Spotlight Series – Dolce Vita
Quisine’s Spotlight Series takes an inside look at the food and beverage industry by speaking with the folks who know it best – restaurant owners, chefs and managers. This time around, we get the inside scoop on Dolce Vita by talking to chef Giorgio Maggioni.
Dolce Vita is located in the Mandarin Oriental hotel at Marina Square. The restaurant and chefs are focused on delivering food that retains the spirit of traditional Italian cuisine.
Tell us about one of the funniest experiences you had in your restaurant
It’s always a fun time in Dolce Vita for everyone, but at the same time, it’s also about finding a balance between knowing when to have fun and when to be professional. That ensures we deliver a memorable epicurean experience for our guests.
What made you choose this line of work? What/Who inspires you?
My grandmother and mother are my two biggest sources of inspiration. During my early years, I always found myself spending time in the kitchen. That is what sparked my passion for the culinary world. Since then, I’ve pursued studies in the culinary arts, but I am also keen on exploring various cuisines and working alongside chefs across the world.
Where do you see the future of dining out or the restaurant scene in general?
The prospects of the culinary scene look bright and promising. People have become more adventurous in exploring new places to dine and eat out. With the evolution of marketing and online platforms, more and more people are able to try new cuisines and explore a medley of gourmet selections. Singapore is a great example of this. That’s because we are home to a diverse selection of food cultures, including hawker food fares and fine dining options.
Is there a dish on your menu that you’re most proud of and is there a story behind it?
Our new Squid Ink Spaghetti with red prawn, Amalfi lemon and gold leaves. This dish is inspired by my summer trip back to Italy, where I had the opportunity to indulge in a variety of amazing dishes across various regions. As I passed the Amalfi Coast, I was amazed by the refreshing flavours and tastes of their organic lemons. Further down South towards the lovely town of Positano, I was spoiled for choice with their fresh seafood produce. This is a fond memory that will remain close to my heart. On my trip back to Capri, a region famed for its upscale shopping and luxury, I knew that I had to include a gold leaf as a final touch.
If you could sit down for a meal at your restaurant with any two people in the world, who would you choose and why?
My parents. It has been a decade since I’ve been away from home and I know that they would be proud of all that I have achieved so far. There comes a moment in time where all you require is a short break to relax with your loved ones. This is especially so for chefs like myself, who dedicate the majority of our time to the kitchen.