The journey of Alessandro Borghese 4 Restaurants (every Sunday exclusively on Sky and streaming only on NOW) from Umbria, where it crowned the best restaurant along the oil route (the interview with the winner), sets off again towards Calabria on one of the most beautiful coastal stretches in Italy, from Pizzo Calabro to Nicotera, passing through Tropea and the views overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea. Pino with his Sunset Beach Club won the challenge and won the title of best restaurant along the Costa degli Dei.
the interview with the winner
What do you think was your trump card?
We won for our simplicity and genuineness, we were simply ourselves and this rewarded us. It was teamwork that won: we have fantastic guys who gave their all, people who have been collaborating with us for some time and also new entries who faced the challenge with pride and the desire to win. It is above all thanks to them that we made it.
Among the criticisms received, which was the most constructive?
The most constructive criticism was on the excessive simplicity of the pasta with spring onion. Very good. What should have been a criticism was a reconfirmation of the strong point of our cuisine: simplicity.
The best compliment?
The best compliment I received was from Alessandro Borghese: “You are a smart and humble boy, I see a good future for you “Pinuzzo”, you deserve it… And you know that I see far!!!”.
How did the idea of excluding some traditional dishes from the menu come about?
Our restaurant has a double soul: at lunch it is a seaside resort and most of the customers are swimmers looking for a quick but quality lunch break. And for them we keep the classic dishes, such as spaghetti with clams. In the evening we transform into our true nature, a modern cuisine that seeks to overcome the clichés of Calabrian cuisine. Furthermore, due to the size of the kitchen we cannot have huge menus and we have to concentrate our efforts on a few courses. Which among other things we often vary based on seasonality and the creativity of our chef Dario.
The dish from your childhood that you would never give up?
Spaghetti and sujaca (beans), with Pachino cherry tomatoes and a bit of ricotta, made by grandmother Rosa “a Gajeca” (nickname), cooked in a crock on the embers and turned with the wooden “cucchjara”!
What do you think your customers appreciate most?
Tropea is an important tourist center in Calabria, so many customers are passing through, and despite this they return more than once in the same week. Why? For the certainty of finding fresh, genuine products at the right price in a breathtaking location. You should try to see the sunset from the terrace.
You are a motorcyclist who loves speed, but in a restaurant you need calm and a lot of patience, how do you reconcile the two things?
The restaurant, like any company, is a team effort. It’s true that I like running alone, but to go far we have to move together. I am never calm and have never been, but my most trusted collaborators have learned to follow me, and it is they who manage to calm me down. The patience? My children teach me, after all an entrepreneur is a good family man…
The mosquito is your nickname, where does it come from?
They compare me to a mosquito because I move knowing everything about everyone, not only the things one does, but also the things one thinks. I always manage to slip into situations where I smell business.
What’s your next dream to come true?
I can’t say it out of good luck, in fact I’ll say it here, I come from the hotel world and my secret dream has always been to create a hotel chain. Who knows, one day… Today, however, I am very happy with what I have achieved in these years, I can’t sit still, I’m a mosquito, and my next destination is Bologna. We’ll see you there again maybe: it looks like 2023 is really our year, the year of the Sunset Holidays group.