What are your earliest memories of being interested in food?
My granddad had an animal and vegetable farm just outside of Olbia in Sardinia and we spend many weekends there as a family making pizzas, focaccia and Sunday roasts using the produce grown on his land.
What would you say has inspired your cooking the most?
It is difficult to identify one thing as inspiration. I feel like I am always surrounded by inspiration: whether it is on my travels exploring other countries and cultures, catching up with family & friends over a home-cooked meal or from the incredible products I get to work with every day.
Describe your culinary style.
Contemporary Italian food by using deceptively simple and typical Southern Italian recipes and using the latest cooking techniques to present colourful and flavoursome dishes.
What are your most indispensable ingredients?
For Southern Italian cooking fresh quality produce is key including tomatoes, garlic and olive oil not to forget flour; the key ingredient to make pasta and bread.
What kind of experience do you aim to give guests at L’Anima?
Serve nutritious food, simply cooked using only the finest seasonal ingredients, presented in a warm friendly atmosphere where hospitality is as important as the meal itself.
How did you devise the spring menu and where did you get your inspiration from?
Spring is the most inspiring season for me as it brings such an abundance of fresh produce providing so much colour and flavour to play with. The season starts earlier in Italy than in the UK which gives us an even bigger array of ingredients to cook with from spiky Sardinian artichokes to juicy Cornish spring lamb.
What would you say has been the most memorable moment in your culinary career so far?
Having the honour of cooking for the Duchess of Cambridge when she attended the Action on Addiction charity gala held at L’Anima last year.
If you could go back in time, what advice would you give your younger self, starting out a career in the world of food?
Devote a lot of time and energy into learning the skills by travelling around the world and working in a variety of establishments and cuisines.
What’s next for you?
I will continue to focus on making L’Anima restaurant the very best it can be.
What’s been your most embarrassing kitchen moment?
In my first job as a chef, I managed to cut off the top of my index finger which resulted in me fainting. You can imagine how much I got teased about this by my colleagues.
What restaurant is currently at the top of your list to dine at?
On a recent trip to Brazil, I had the pleasure of meeting and dining at his restaurant D.O.M. It is inspiring to see what he creates using mainly seasonal and unique natural ingredients from the Amazon.
1 Snowden Street, London, EC2A 2DQ, UK
+44 (0) 20 7422 7000