The NTH Degree Club Private Dinner At Sartoria Restaurant & Interview With Francesco Mazzei
20 September 2018
In January The Nth Degree Club hosted a private dinner at Sartoria, a stylish Italian restaurant in the heart of London’s Mayfair on Savile Row which is the home of the chef Francesco Mazzei. Guests enjoyed a menu of Crab salad “brown and white,” horseradish & blood orange, Tortelli, burrata, truffle & aged Modena balsamic vinegar plus dessert of Homemade pistachio cake. Here we share all the images from this special evening where we chatted to Chef Patron Sartoria, Radici, Fiume Francesco Mazzei.
The NTH Degree Club: Where are you from and where did you grow up?
Francesco Mazzei: From Calabria (South Italy) and that’s where I grew up.
The NTH Degree Club: When and how did your passion for food start?
Francesco Mazzei: My family has always been in the food industry, in particular pastry and ice cream, so growing up surrounded made my passion for food start from a very young age.
The NTH Degree Club: What is the first dish you created?
Francesco Mazzei: A strawberry birthday cake for my younger sister.
The NTH Degree Club: Do you have any special memories from the kitchen when you were growing up?
Francesco Mazzei: I remember spending a lot of time cooking with my mum and my grandmother. All family gatherings were food related. I remember making sausages, salumi etc all together. These are days I will never forget.
The NTH Degree Club: Where did you do your training and what was your first job?
Francesco Mazzei: My first job was a the age of nine at my uncle’s ice cream shop. Then I went to catering school for five years.
The NTH Degree Club: What advice would you give to aspiring chefs?
Francesco Mazzei: Work hard, be humble, put your head down.
The NTH Degree Club: What can we expect if we visit your current restaurant?
Francesco Mazzei: Real Italian fair, great service and wine, seasonality and the best of Italy outside Italy that you can find.
The NTH Degree Club: Tell us about your signature dishes.
Francesco Mazzei: My signature dishes talk about myself and where I come from and what inspired me. For example, black cod with liquorice is inspired by the region I come from but also my trip to Asia. The burrata tortelli with nduja is a full experience of Italy from North to South (best pasta, best burrata filling, best Grana Padano, best balsamic, best nduja), a dish that I would recommend to anyone visiting Sartoria.
The NTH Degree Club: Where do you think food trends are heading for 2019?
Francesco Mazzei: Going back to the roots – less is more, simple food, seasonality.
The NTH Degree Club: If you could cook with one other chef, who would it be?
Francesco Mazzei: I do a lot of collaborations these days, especially for charity, but if I could pick one chef would have been Paul Bocuse.
The NTH Degree Club: If you could create a menu for four famous people (alive or dead), who would they be, and what would the menu be?
Francesco Mazzei: Four people: Paul Bocuse, Luciano Pavarotti, Sophia Loren, Pope Francis. Menu: Four course menu: Scallop with salsa verde, Burrata tortelli with nduja, Cod with liquorice, Zabaglione
The NTH Degree Club: If you could eat anywhere in the world, where would you go for a special meal and what drink would you pick to go with it?
Francesco Mazzei: Japan is definitely on my list – I would like to go to the fish market with Yoshihiro Murata get the best fish ever and eat fish like there is no tomorrow and wash down with sake.