A maze of white, pale yellow and grey narrow roads and terraces crowded with travellers, hosts and guests. From the distance, they look like tiny little ants. In the morning, the sound of copper green bells wakes up this island that looks like a living nativity…
It’s been an atypical May in Italy this year with abundant and steady rains and unpredictable Northern skies. We decide to escape it and get on a direct flight from Milan to Mykonos. We land on a Thursday afternoon. There’s a pale sun in the sky and a light wind is blowing. At the end of our week on the island, we will have got to know this wind very well. To understand the direction and the strength of it is something you learn fast and that creates complicity between you and the island…
We only discovered it this spring, one day we were sitting at a bar with some new friends chatting about Meraviglia places. We tried it almost immediately and from that day on we’ve got a new favourite address in town. We’d like to take everyone there: sisters, friends, dads and mums. For a relaxed breakfast, a Sunday lunch or an after-theatre dinner. Pasta Madre is a joy that deserves to be shared and here are a few reasons why. Bread and croissants are made only with mother yeast.Pasta is always made fresh in the morning with ancient grains flours. All ingredients come from Sicily and from a greengrocer from the South of Italy. The atmosphere in the kitchen makes you feel part of an extended family. You’ll fall in love with the Chitarrine pasta with fava beans (or green peas) pesto. The beef meatballs are cooked within lemon leaves. You cannot make up your mind on what’s your favourite dessert. And finally, because Pasta Madre is a dream came true. It’s Francesco and Laura’s dream and we never get tired of listening to their story.
by Massimo Temporiti
The tomatoes come from Pachino or Vesuvio, the pistachios from Bronte, the fontina cheese from Pila, the ricotta and the cheese for the cheesecake (prepared ad hoc) from Syracuse. The vegetables are from his garden where he cultivates produces typical of the Lombardy region during summer and of Liguria during winter. When Massimo tells you about his restaurant, his blue eyes light up while he takes you through a journey across Italy to discover the most genuine flavours of the country. Sicily and its aromas are the main inspiration for his recipes. When plates come out of his kitchen it often feels like they are coming directly from there.
by Polina Liarostathi
Polina is an Interior & Product Designer born in Athens, currently living in London. Design is present in every aspect of Polina’s life and her RSS list with design blogs and magazines is constantly growing, feeding her endless need to stay updated about the world of creativity.
“El fenn” means “art” and this riad is full of it. It’s a place where time stops. From the red streets of Marrakech you enter the medina and at first your eyes struggle to adjust to the darkness of the rooms you walk through. But then, you’re back to the light, in the shaded garden at the centre of the building. In the square-shaped, deep and tall patio, the vegetation rises up to the blue sky and houses birds that have found here their paradise. There are turtles walking on the marble and coming to greet you by lightly hitting their head against your feet. This space, where you arrive and will keep coming back to, is like an open-air living room where to meet before heading toward other corners of this magical and intimate house…
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Before it opens its doors to customers, Marit Beemster’s dining room is a sea-green box with only a few tables and tidy chairs waiting to be occupied and disarranged. Wildflowers bow over the tables, coloured glasses shine, while birds and owls pretend to be alert. In a time when eating out doesn’t necessarily mean going to a restaurant, it’s a joy to discover Marits, home restaurant in the East side of Amsterdam. It’s just like eating at a friend’s house, with a 3 courses menu made with local and organic ingredients. Strictly no fish or meat.
Think of a black shiny piano in the hallway; a white marble sundial hanging over the door of your room; airy light blue on the walls of the House of the Wind; a shell-shaped stoop next to a big eucalyptus tree where to hide the keys when you leave your room; a white terrace and a small sun-kissed private patio; a blue indigo dome with a white cross; a swimming pool touching the blue horizon of the Caldera’s water; a bronze woman’s head with straight nose, motionless, her hair gathered on the back of her neck and her chin up toward Nea Kameni, the youngest volcanic island of the archipelago. In Santorini, you’ll find a collector so generous and confident that she shares her art with her guests as they were part of the family. Meraviglia is the privilege to own for a few nights the keys of this home-museum, wake up in the morning, order your room service and eat breakfast with silver cutlery, a selection of impeccable French croissants and pain au chocolat, and red grapes. Get ready for a once in a lifetime experience.
by Vittoria Bortolazzo
Vittoria always dreamt of making “haut patisserie” ice cream. She has a passion for quality, respect for top-notch, carefully sourced ingredients and a great imagination when combining flavours. The dream became reality when 23-year-old Vittoria found a small parlour a stone’s throw away from Corso Buenos Aires in Milan. This became the home of Gelato Giusto. Vittoria’s youthful exuberance is reflected in the unusual and edgy names of her ice creams – such as Matcha Green Tea and Raspberry, Basil Flower. Yet her cv is long and includes renowned names – Le Cordon Bleu, William Curley, Ladurée, Lenotre, Valrhona. Well done Vittoria!
by Melina Chomata
Melina is the executive chef of Vinsanto restaurant at Vedema and Charisma restaurant at Mystique, both on the magical Cycladic island of Santorini. In recent years, Santorini has truly come into its own as a world-class culinary and wine lover’s destination, thanks no doubt to hard-working, creative individuals like Melina. She received a very tempting offer from the owners of Vedema 15 years ago and never left. So talented yet so down to earth, Melina is discreetly weaving her culinary magic. Inspired by lost ancient recipes and the archaic settlement of Akrotiri, Melina has designed an exclusive series of innovative, neo-Greek lunch and dinner menus based on the island’s unique products: famed fava bean, one-of-a-kind white eggplant, cherry tomato, zucchini, capers and sweet Vinsanto wine. Proof that simplicity often lies at the heart of gastronomic brilliance can be found in her signature dishes.
by Kalia Konstantinidou
Kalia is the energetic, stylish co-owner of Vedema and Mystique, both on the mesmerizing Greek island of Santorini. If you happen to be visiting the ultimate Mediterranean culinary destination that is Santorini, make sure to stop in. There you might find Kalia, who can fill you in on all of Santorini’s hotspots – from must-see sightseeing like the ancient settlement of Akrotiri to a small, family-run winery that offers personalised tours, the best restaurants and hippest stores in the capital Thira, as well as her favourite galleries and art shops in the isolated village of Oia, the spot to watch the sun set gloriously into the Aegean.