To celebrate the 60th anniversary of Italy’s entry into the United Nations, the Italians are celebrating with—what else?—food and wine. The Italian Food Festival, running from Dec. 7 to Dec. 11, showcases authentic Italian ingredients prepared by world-renowned chefs.
The chefs, who were chosen by the gourmet food franchise Italia di Gusto, will prepare lunch at the Delegates Dining Room at the United Nations over the course of five days.
The chefs include: Filippo La Mantia, whose Sicilian cuisine—using neither garlic or onions—is served at his restaurant Filippo La Mantia Oste e Cucoco in Milan; Sonia Balacchi, who was crowned Queen of Pastry, being the first woman chef to win the World Pastry Championship in 2012, with her famous chocolate cake Cassiopea; and Michele Biagiola, who earned a Michelin star.
On the menu, expect Trofie al Pesto, Chickpea Minestra, Burratine, Umbria-style Porchetta, Turbot Filet with anchovies and caper sauce, panna cotta, cassata, and cannoli.
Balacchi, said last week that half of her dessert menu would be devoted to well-loved classics such as the Sicilian cannoli and tiramisu, and the other half to her own creations. Pressed about her favorite dessert, Balacchi mentioned millefoglie with chantilly, from northern Italy.
Antonio Gaetani, president of Italia di Gusto, said there are 4,700 local traditional food items throughout Italy. Many of these are unknown to the American public and remarkably have been produced the same way as they were hundreds of years ago. The products undergo a strict process of selection. Italia di Gusto has a retail store in Ridgewood, N.J., with plans to open another in New York City in the future.
“Please come and see and taste and test all the things that the world envies about Italian production, Italian lifestyle. It’s a way of being. It’s our manners, the smells, the sounds, everything that has to do with being Italian,” Gaetani said.
Italy’s culinary culture was inscribed by UNESCO as Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2010.
Italian Food Festival
Delegates Dining Room at the United Nations
46 St. & 1st Ave.
New York, NY
Reservations available at 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. only.
$34.99 per person