Like a child in a room full of games, someone already unpacked, someone to fix, something yet to be unpacked. With sparkling eyes and staring at a list of goals to achieve, Riccardo Canella – recently become the restaurant’s chef Gold of the Belmond Hotel Cipriani – is enthusiastic about taking up the challenge. A new home, a residence that is both a school, a gym, a motor of ideas and possibilities for this young boy, former deputy head of Noma in Copenhagen for eight intense years. “I wanted to return to Italy, get closer to those regions that are dear to me and try to bring something different not only for the reality in which I find myself but for the very territory that welcomes us”.
The context in which he now works, that of the historic Venetian hotel, contemplates the great legacy of those who came before him Cinnamon and at the same time an enormous potential to discover and therefore to exploit. “I learn a lot, every day. The team is constantly evolving, the professions to be exercised are different and I finally have the managerial aspects of my profession, the economic side, communication, all approached from the point of view of a large international group”.
The room ofGold. Photo Mattia Aquila
In addition to the restaurant Goldopen exclusively for dinner, a Michelin star with a few elegant tables, Cinnamon he became the director of the whole sector food and drink of the work. It therefore ranges from 24-hour room service, to the snack bar in front of the swimming pool with offers of international and Mediterranean comforting dishes, to the restaurant The marina. The latter has been completely renovated in terms of furniture; for the moment, it is only open at lunchtime with a wide selection of bar à cru organized by the chef and a bar of champagne by the glass.
For those who like to try an immersive experience other than what the lagoon has traditionally hosted, a dinner from Gold it is however a must. The tasting route Become includes eight dishes of meat, fish and vegetables while the second proposal is entirely vegetable, Vegetal. There is no free menu, the dishes are designed to follow one another, a gradual flow of flavors: we like to discuss certain expectations, break the traditional rhythms of service and find ourselves surrounded by a kaleidoscope of shapes and perfumes. Each dish is presented at the table either by the chef or by young assistants (still a little shy to show themselves to the customer but with eyes full of light and passion).
It is a very colorful kitchen, where the imprint No but it is more than tangible, on sight and in the mouth, partly Italianized and adapted to a different context. Between the hotel’s vegetable garden, in the Casanova garden, and the surrounding islands, it is possible to satisfy the overall need for raw materials in quantity and quality by working with many varieties of vegetables, herbs, mushrooms, tubers. The vegetable returns to acquire dignity and status of equal importance compared to meat and fish, wonderful in every bite. “What interests me is the taste. When a customer tastes one of my dishes, that bite has to be explosive, regardless of the research we have put into it and the technique required to achieve it”.
More: Cod with koji, rice waffles with squid ink, oyster leaf, caviar. Below: Zucchini flower in tempura, coffee, lavender & Tartlet with porcini mushrooms, almonds, black truffle
To the left Clams, fermented pasta water, seaweed oil and samphire. To the right Taco of polenta, schie, lemon egg sauce, crusco chili oil, Mexican oregano & Golden drop, celery leaf oil, sea urchins, Venetian curry
Ricardo Canella he likes mushrooms, yeast, truffles, fermentation and everything that contributes, in one way or another, to increase this note of umami which is decisive in many preparations. We then start with Pollen / your made with miso and burnt polenta that presents itself with a forest of herbs, sprouts and aromas from the field. It is drunk with a straw while the nose is lost in the scent of flowers.
Unmasked it is rather a cracker of seaweed and polenta covered with flowers made with a miniature Venetian mask: a small work of art, it is crunchy in the mouth, the petals of flowers caress the lips in a gustatory exercise to which our palate does not is not very accustomed, but who moves and conquers. Biting into the cracker is like letting go of this protective wall and accepting the narrative pact with the chef: lifting the mask to begin a gastronomic journey together in search of taste. Delicate and seasonal, the veniceviche it is made with sliced zucchini from the island of Sant’Erasmo, smoked tomato water, tomato leaf oil, Select bitters and berries harvested from the garden. A small painting to contemplate and eat.
Chioggia scallops in horse broth and burnt lemon powder
Follow the Chioggia scallops in horse broth and burnt lemon powder. Again we are liquid, with a spoon in hand and with the broth acting as a cooking and consistency amplifier. The meat melts in the mouth without dissolving, it is fatty, fresh and meets the chicory with its bitterness which immediately restores the balance. “After searching for weeks, I finally found a supplier who only delivers their catch to a few selected markets. We now have their products here at Goldsays the chef.
Ravioli stuffed with cod tripe, busara broth and spicy oil
In this menu, the protagonists play a prominent role Ravioli stuffed with cod tripe, busara broth and spicy oil, in honor of the island of Burano since the pastry is embellished with orange and black brushstrokes reminiscent of the decorated glass sculptures typical of the island. What to say? It is one of those occasions when gastronomy goes beyond its nature and brings back to the origin, to the soup, to the gestures and to the comfort of the broth which warms and softens a rich and delicious garnish. The vegetarian equivalent of this latter preparation isnavel of venus: a cappeletto filled with almonds and served in a broth of wild lagoon herbs, where the difference is almost lost with a carnivorous garnish.
It is only then, when the dances have already begun, that the bread service arrives. A loaf of sourdough and organic flour, then breadsticks reminiscent of filindeu The Sardinians are such thin, curry-dusted crackers. They complement the oil, produced in the olive groves of Belmond Casole Castle and butter, whose flavor goes beyond the concept and experience of butter itself. It is in fact a butter whipped with yeast toasted on the grill, which somehow closes the circle of the fundamental circularity of the cuisine of Cinnamon: what nourishes us and which constitutes a primary source of subsistence is also a condiment for this same material. Yeast performs this dual function, symbolically performing a sort of Krebs cycle then to a new life.
Bay leaf and saffron rice. Photo Belmond / PA Jorgensen
We move forward with Bay leaf and saffron rice, a tribute to two of the most emblematic figures of Italian catering, Massimiliano Alajmo and Gualtiero Marchesi. With liquorice powder from the famous dish of Alajmo the laurel, more tannic and thicker, is replaced, which blends happily with saffron garnished with a heart of pollen cream and rose oil. The gold leaf that Marquis he used to place rice on top, in this case it is placed below, as a sign of respect and devotion.
At the end of the course there is no meat but the forest, with the Pumpkin “bronsa querta”, or pumpkin slowly cooked on the grill, served with a mushroom and seaweed glaze, polenta oil and the first grilled porcini mushrooms. A splendid dish, with which to have fun and enjoy, immersing yourself in the autumn season and in the complex tunnel of flavors and aromas of the mountain. We close the circle with a fluffy Woodruff ice cream, oyster, goat cheese cream and tarragon oil: enveloping, tasty and totally visionary. An epilogue that is not really sweet but aims to pamper the taste buds in a sweet passage between the salty and the end of the road.
Woodruff ice cream, oyster, goat cheese cream and tarragon oil. Photo Belmond / PA Jorgensen
Even though only a few months have passed Ricardo Canella brags in the house Ciprianiwhat you perceive from Gold it is absolutely the beginning of a period of great identity, determination and progressive evolution. This young boy has a very clear vision and makes it evolve day after day and adapts it to the territory, to its criticalities and beauties, at the time. Particularly fertile, dynamic, almost fanciful times are coming in Giudecca: we look forward to being part of it!