Discovering the city of Bologna has never been so sweet so far. The reason comes from a recent grand re-opening that has hit the town's center, we are talking about the "Mercato di Mezzo" which means The Middle Market, located in the heart of the city. What is it exactly? It's the brand new Mecca for foodlovers opened after years of restructuring, coming from a cooperation of different national brands, learders in the food market, now totally re-newed displaying a variety of typical EmiliaRomagna's product available for tastings, lunchs and dinners to locals and tourists.
In particular this time we will focuse on the sweet side of the market. With an exclusive interiew to the Patisserie Chef Gino Fabbri, explaining the project behind the " Central Station of Sweetness" : the only spot inside the food hanger that offers every kind of sweet delicacies.
Let's go to the discovery of EmiliaRomagna immersed in rivers ganache, praline and sorbets, feeling fortunate children in the chocolate factory with golden tickets to all of you.
The quadrilatero (quadrilateral): famous area located in the heart of town, nestled between the pedestrian Via Drapperie and via Pescherie Vecchie and Via Clavature, is home to a building of 740 square meters, with a structure plant from the nineteenth century, returned to Bologna's citizen after 6 years of closure. From Friday 11th of April flourishes echo of the tradition that has kneaded the tasty offers featured and provided by the various exercises of the historical center in the vast gastronomic and multisensory proposals all gathered under the covered Mercato di Mezzo.
A square of culinary paradise on three levels, restored by the urban-chic design. The scent is exciting once stepped inside the crowded door, the aroma of coffee, bakery, craft beer.
From the plate of tortellini, grilled fish 'til centrifuged fruit and vegetables, a riot of sparkling taste that will enhance your palate with the finest local products.
The sweetness hub is the Central Station of Taste, almost a station of sugar taste where to gather to cover with honey the taste buds, entrusted to the multi-decade wisdom, since 1965, of the pastry chef Gino Fabbri.
Triple countery with a confectionery soul, with different identities: The taste of coffee, the taste of pastry and taste of ice cream. Located in front of haute pâtisserie delicacies of various sizes, from miniature cake to fruit pies through pizzas and croissants to the macarons, all signed by a territorial symbol of excellence.
Fabbri is a guarantee of quality and high standard of technique and sophistication combined with the tradition.
Internationally renowned chef, pastry chef of the year in 2009 and elected President of the the Academy of Italian Master Pastry Chefs, which is part of from the 1996.
The project was born from the synergy of big business and "small" food artisans, we asked directly to the craftsman of these creations of edible art, engine of Central del Taste.
TER: Chef, what is the basic concept behind the project?
G.F. : It 's a different proposition from what has been until now the world of pastry, in this case in Bologna. I liked the project because it was developed into an innovative idea: to create in something very old (the building) something new.
TER: What ingrendient have you brought into the project?
G.F. : I asked my family, which for me has always been the base, with my eldest daughter who have believed in this project, very challenging, with a bar, pastry and ice cream position, is going to touch three spheres of proposals without compromising the quality side, is the desire to maintain both a balance and a high standard level.
Family, tradition, and generational passing of the baton to give space to young people. "It 's good to make room for the younger generation if they have stirrings, and will, new ideas, they need a reality allowing growth."
TER: How is Bologna located in the panorama of Italian pastry gastronomy?
G.F. : It 's a reality in line, there are new forces that are coming forward, I like to support, the spaces are there, and my opinion is that the more supply and quality is there then the more you can engage your audience.
It 's a product of cooperation of regional excellence. The shops in the quadrilateral does not penalize one another but enhance each other. Because tourists as the local inhabitant feels comfortable where they can choose and they are willing to move to the recall of a quality product.
TER: In the bakery lies study, science, computing. What is the alchemy to perfection?
G.F. When I speak of sensory analysis, I mean something that reminds us of the aromas, flavors and that is related to our historical memories. And the impact of the aroma that becomes emotion, memory.
When I'm on the jury I have to overcome my gustatory pleasure, the subjective, and give a technical opinion, is when you offer something different to the people.
TER: Do you have a favourite recipe?
G.F. : I always say that when I can eat the homemade ring-shaped bolognese cake, because I can eat it with milk in the morning and in the evening with wine. It 's a memory of childhood, of my family.
TER: Your bakery is more scientific or emotional?
G.F. : I always prefer to be emotional, the perfect dessert is the one that at first taste gives you an emotion, otherwise with only technique is not well done.
TER: Could you suggest a recipe for Easter?
G.F. : I would say to bring a traditional "Colomba", without candied fruit, maybe stuffed with a cream that reminds the classic trifle.
Gino Fabbri reminds us with a warm smile that the culture of the art of pastry has its roots in the tradition, in the uniqueness of the products.
And his pastry shop, is like him, coming from other times, with an eye to modernity, one step back to home cooking. His cakes are morsels of pleasure that recall thinking of grandmothers and of counter dirty with flour and egg, while maintaining a sublime aesthetic refinement.
The creaminess of the traditions of Emilia-Romagna blend into the gourmet haute cuisine's horizon, because perfection is always a fusion cuisine, a warm hug between memory and experimentation.
If you already have a feeling of mouthwatering the Mercato di Mezzo is waiting for you every day until midnight :)