Renowned for its fish, Da Vittorio holds 3 Michelin stars. Opened in 1966 by Vittorio Cerea, it’s now run by brothers Enrico and Roberto in the kitchen and Francesco front of house.
HOW WOULD YOU SUM UP YOUR BOND WITH THE LOCAL AREA?
We love using the expression “Lombard traditions and creative flair”. It’s tradition in the process of evolution.
The products we use are part of our DNA because we know them like the back of our hands, we’ve always eaten them and they form part of our history. Take cheese, for example – this area has more PDO-certified cheeses than anywhere else in Europe. We took a traditional poor man’s dish, Polenta e Taleggio, and created our casoncelli – a typical type of pasta from Bergamo – with taleggio filling served on a sweetcorn puree.
WHAT ARE YOU FAVOURITE LOCAL PRODUCTS?
The excellent Bergamasco salami, which contains a drop of red Valcalepio wine and a touch of garlic; red fruits such as raspberries, blackberries and blueberries, which grow on the hills; endive, which is green when it first grows, but we keep it in the dark to give it a darker colour, crunchy texture and that lovely bitter flavour; Iseo extra-virgin olive oil, which is produced on a tiny scale.
WHERE DO YOU LIKE TO DO YOUR OWN FOOD SHOPPING?
It’s still traditional in these parts for people to keep allotments, so often food shopping means nothing more than walking through the rows of vegetables as if they were shop windows. There are two shops that stand out: Ol formager, which has an incredible range of local cheeses, and Giovanni Cacciolo’s Orobica Pesca, which is one of the best fishmongers in Italy.
LEAVING YOUR STUNNING RESTAURANT TO ONE SIDE, WHAT DO WE ABSOLUTELY HAVE TO TRY IF WE VISIT THE AREA?
These region does a wonderful line in desserts, such as Donizzetti cake, which was invented by a famous Bergamo baker and is made from candied apricots and pineapple. Another one to try is our Gioconda, a dessert we created with gianduia hazelnut chocolate and orange peel. It’s dedicated to our mother.