The “instinctive cuisine” of Vicenza-born chef Lorenzo Cogo arrives in Venice, at Dama restaurant, an elegant concept of the charming five-star hotel Ca’ Bonfadini, located in the historic Cannaregio district.
A new beginning for Cogo – former enfant prodige of Italian cuisine and for years the youngest starred chef in Italy – who, after the closure of El Coq, has chosen to dedicate himself to this new project, inaugurating a new chapter in his professional career.
Ristorante Dama, whose name recalls the typical Venetian structures supported by briccole – the characteristic wooden poles used to mark the waterways – overlooks the Cannaregio Canal and offers guests an authentic glimpse of daily life in the Serenissima.
The gastronomic proposal curated by the chef gives life to an innovative tasting experience through a combination of unexpected ingredients and techniques, an expression of local excellence on the one hand and, on the other, of his international training.
“It is a great honor for me to have had the opportunity to take part in this project and to be able to give an innovative turn to the gastronomic scene in Venice. – says Cogo – My choice to offer a seafood based menu goes against the trend of the many restaurants in the Lagoon, which tend to offer traditional cuisine. At Dama, I work with fish and produce in the optimal manner and source my ingredients exclusively from local fishmongers and businesses that can provide me with fresh, quality seasonal ingredients.”
This commitment is emblematic of a change in direction and the result of a great deal of research that has led to an idea of cuisine that is halfway between tradition and contamination, in which typical local elements blend with raw materials and oriental techniques, reflecting the chef’s experience.
The menu at Dama restaurant includes two menus, one for breakfast, with sweet and savory proposals, and one for lunch and dinner, of a seasonal nature, with a section dedicated to vegetarian dishes, which tells of the chef’s desire for a Venetian-style cuisine, but with an international flair.
Among the proposals on the menu that give voice to the chef’s provocative and experimental approach are the Carpaccio of amberjack, purple cabbage, horseradish and rosewater; the Risotto of dashi, red shrimp, “rabioso” and pomegranate; and the Roll of monkfish fillet with cardamom and bell pepper XO sauce.
“I have always created instinctive, and often provocative dishes, but here – the chef points out – I want to create a harmony of flavors that makes you feel good and allows guests to be at home. At Dama I offer dishes that are in keeping with the place in which they were conceived, comfortable, but with a well-defined identity, capable of offering an all-round quality dining experience.
The Dama restaurant’s menu is indeed an unexpected and unrepeatable seafood and vegetarian experience, aimed at enhancing local traditions and products in an utterly original way. The guests’ stay is made even more intimate and informal thanks to the interior design of the restaurant, where three tables, created by Riva 1920 using the restored wood of the briccole, are the main feature, allowing guests to socialize and share their gastronomic journey in the name of quality and innovation.