The Wordrobe chats the ‘luxury of simplicity’ with Christoph Bob, Head Chef of the newly Michelin-starred Il Refettorio restaurant on Amalfi’s idyllic coastline
There’s a reason why southern Italy’s Amalfi Coast retains its status as one of the world’s most romantic and alluring destinations – with dramatic stretches of coastline, hair-raising winding roads, breathtaking views and fresh Italian seafood, it’s hard to resist.
Amongst its numerous attractions includes Monastero Santa Rosa Hotel & Spa. Suavely gorgeous, the hotel’s fabulous sea-view restaurant, Il Refettorio, received its first Michelin star in November 2017. We caught up with Head Chef Christoph Bob to find out more about his tastebud-tantalising cooking approach…
What inspired you to become a chef?
I wanted to see the world, learn about different countries and styles of cooking, and do something from scratch.
How did you get into the industry – where did you train?
I began my career in London at Mosimann’s and have worked at many distinguished restaurants throughout Europe including Relais Blu in Massa Lubrense on the Sorrento Peninsula, Grand Hotel Villa a Fetrinelli, in Gargnano, Italy, La Pergola Cavalieri, in Rome and Plaza Athenee – Alain Ducasse.
Do you have any role models?
Frieda Kahlo for art, August Escoffier for cooking and Mahatma Ghandi for living.
What’s your favourite spring ingredient
White and green asparagus which we use throughout the season from April to June.
What can guests expect from the menus at Monastero Santa Rosa?
In keeping with the philosophy of Monastero Santa Rosa, at Il Refottorio we focus on the luxury of simplicity and have a holistic approach to cooking. We use natural unmodified products and Monastero Santa Rosa’s organic garden gives me so much inspiration with its fresh vegetables, and its intensely scented herbs.
It is a creative, inventive and original cuisine, I like to use and enhance the typical products of our coast and hinterland: all kinds of delicious fish and crustaceans, vegetables and herbs grown organically in our vegetable garden, pasta from Gragnano, anchovies from Cetara, and traditional artisan cheese and meat from nearby Monti Lattari.
Why do so many foodies love Amalfi’s food scene?
Nowhere else in the world do the sun and the earth give such a flavour intensity to vegetables, fruit and aromatic herbs. And how about this wonderful sea providing high-quality fish every day.
Describe your cooking style in three words.
Mediterranean, seasonal, less is more – it is all about the product.
Hungry for more? Click here for further details on this gourmet Amalfi getaway