Restaurant News

Massimo Bottura opens a new restaurant

With the Italian chef's new restaurant launching as part of the Gucci Garden in Florence, the long lunch could be back in vogue.

By Maggie Scardifield
Chef Massimo Bottura

With the Italian chef's new restaurant launching as part of the Gucci Garden in Florence, the long lunch could be back in vogue.

Ever wondered what a Gucci-approved burger would be? Meet the Emilia. The patty is cotechino, the cheese Parmigiano-Reggiano and the name behind it is Massimo Bottura.

Earlier this month, the Italian fashion house opened The Gucci Garden Galleria in Florence. It's part museum, part boutique, and home to a stunning 55-seat restaurant brought to life by Bottura, the owner and chef of Osteria Francescana in Modena, currently ranked number two on the World's 50 Best Restaurants list.

The Charley Marley dessert

The Gucci Garden is the next chapter of the Gucci Museo, originally opened in 2011, and spans two floors and six rooms at the historic Palazzo della Mercanzia. You'll find Gucci Osteria da Massimo Bottura on the ground floor of the Galleria. It's a jewel-toned dining room painted a bright shade of green with Instagram-friendly velvet banquettes and rose-printed crockery.

Bottura's all-day menu aims to "wield you into new orbits of taste". The star ingredients of his home region of Emilia-Romagna get their moments in the spotlight: Parmigiano-Reggiano made into a cream for tortellini, say, and balsamic vinegar spiking the mayonnaise on the Emilia burger, along with salsa verde.

But there are also references from further afield. Take the fried corn tostada topped with bonito, chipotle mayonnaise and hibiscus powder. It's a nod to the Mexican heritage of Karime Lopez, the Osteria's chef de cuisine. "This dish is one of the most representative of the cultural crossovers at Gucci Osteria," says Bottura. "Our kitchen interacts with everything we see, hear and taste."

Bonito tostada

There are cold cuts of culatello, mortadella and more, steamed pork belly buns and even a hotdog. A risotto combines scampi and mushrooms - "where the forest meets the sea." Come dessert you could opt for a Spritz sorbet or sour-cherry cheesecake, perhaps, or go large with the Charley Marley: chocolate gelato, vanilla-orange mascarpone and three kinds of hazelnut - cake, cream and crumble. It's named after Bottura's son.

Gucci Garden Galleria's cinema

Next door to the restaurant are two large retail spaces where visitors can shop for everything from classic loafers, horse-bit accessories and luggage, to postcards, music boxes and maps of Florence. There's also a 30-seat cinema lined with red velvet, which screens experimental film, and, upstairs, a display of archival Gucci pieces that date back to the 1920s.

While the fashion world isn't known best for long lunches, Gucci Osteria might just change their minds.

Gucci Osteria da Massimo Bottura, noon-8.30pm daily, Piazza della Signoria 10, Florence; The Gucci Garden Galleria, 10am-7.30pm daily (last entry 6.30pm), tickets are eight euros per person, with 50 per cent donated to restoration projects in Florence.

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  • Author: Maggie Scardifield