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May 18, 2024

Chef Matteo assumes the helm at Andaz Delhi: Curating a menu for the Indian palate

As far as Italian food is concerned in Delhi, the bar just keeps getting higher. Recently Andaz Delhi announced the appointment of Chef Matteo Fracalossi as their new executive chef. His culinary expertise spans over three decades across the globe. He has worked all over the world including Russia, Qatar, Italy, Vietnam, Malaysia and Saipan, giving him an insight and expertise into cuisines from around the world.

He has also worked with Chef Antonio Cannavacciuolo at the famed Villa Crespi in Italy, where during his tenure, the restaurant was awarded with two Michelin stars. LuxeBook deep dived into a conversation with the chef about his role as head chef and curating a menu to suit Italian palates. Excerpts:

Q. Tell us about assuming the role of Head Chef at Andaz Delhi after your experience in different hotels under the Hyatt brand around the world.

Taking on the role of Executive Chef at Andaz Delhi is truly an exciting transition for me. Having had the privilege of working in a variety of hotels under the Hyatt brand around the world, this opportunity allows me to bring a range of international culinary experiences and flavours to the heart of India. Andaz Delhi’s commitment to embracing local flavours and ingredients resonates perfectly with my culinary philosophy, and I’m excited to contribute to the vibrant food scene here.

 

Q. How have you curated the menu here to suit Indian palates?

Curating the menu at AnnaMaya to appeal to Indian palates has been an exciting aspect. While remaining faithful to the core of the modern foodhall, I’ve integrated elements that appeal to India’s wide and refined palate. The menu combines a combination of worldwide inspirations with a keen understanding of local preferences, providing an internationally inspired and locally rooted culinary experience.

 

Q. Tell us about your experience under Chef Antonino in Italy at the Michelin Starred Villa Crespi.

My time working with Chef Antonino at the Michelin-starred Villa Crespi in Italy was nothing short of life-changing. It was during this remarkable period that I honed my culinary talents and developed a deep respect for the art of gastronomy. Chef Antonino’s mentoring played an important role in establishing my cooking style, emphasising precision, originality, and an unwavering commitment to excellence.

 

Q. How have your travels and experiences from around the world inspired your cooking?

Travelling and sampling different cuisines from around the world has been a constant source of inspiration for my cooking. Each location has permanent imprints on my culinary style, allowing me to create meals that are a harmonious blend of global flavours. My encounters with different cultures have enriched my perspective, influencing the way I approach ingredients, techniques and the overall dining experience.

 

Q. Since Annamaya is a multi-cuisine restaurant, what are your plans for it?

As a multi-cuisine restaurant, my goal for AnnaMaya is to enrich the dining experience by introducing unique and culturally varied meals. My aim is to offer a dynamic menu that celebrates the diversity of global flavours while remaining relevant to the local culinary tapestry by embracing the concept of a modern foodhall. One can expect a culinary journey that crosses borders and celebrates culinary diversity.

 

Q. Favourite cooking tip?

My favourite culinary tip is to constantly value the ingredients and its quality and freshness. When each component is carefully chosen and handled, a meal can truly shine. Additionally, embracing creativity in the kitchen, being open to experimentation, and enjoying the cooking process are other important factors for me that contribute and elevate the final results.

Q. Favourite food to eat?

My mom’s gnocchi with homemade pesto sauce.

Anushka Manik

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