WHEN the sun doesn’t shine in southern Italy, there is one major comfort. The food. I was reminded of this over the weekend during a trip to Sardinia since it was warmer, sunnier and less windy in London than it was there. And it wasn’t warm in London. Or sunny. Or particularly still.
If there is one particular type of food that provides comfort when the weather chips are down, it has to be a really brilliant, dripping, fresh, milky, bright white pool of mozzarella being moulded into bulbs stuffed with buratta. And, as it was this weekend, mozzarella being squeezed and pressed into the shapes of little piggies, baby rattles and anything else you can think of.
Welcome to the white ‘n’ cheesy world of Mozz’ Art, a restaurant that will open along with the rest of Promenade du Port, a summer pop-up parade in super-ritzy Porto Cervo near Olbia. Along with Fingers, the too-chic-for-its-own-good Asian restaurant from Milan, Mozz’ Art will be the main culinary focus of the Promenade, which is full of design shops, galleries and boutiques. The venue consists of a “mozzarella maker corner”, where you can see and eat the fresh cheese just made in wild shapes, the “restaurant corner” where the chef prepares different mozzarella-based dishes and “the boutique of mozzarella” where you can buy fresh products, recipes and artisan products.
The lack of good, creamy mozzarella in London is a notable flaw in our foodscape. The cheese has to be fresh to be staggering, and we just don’t do it fresh like the Italians. So in a city full of Italofiles, Mozz’Art struck me as just the kind of place that would go down a treat (if rumours prove right, we may, in fact, be getting one in Hertfordshire).
As the wind blustered and we hunched over our cheese, there was another consolation: the Mozz’Art guys decided to serve it with with Siberian caviar. A toothpick of lemon-sprinkled buratta, a blob on the wrist of caviar, and an asparagus spear. Great combo. Who needs sun anyway? www.promenadeduport.com