Photographer: Roberto Rocco
Interview by Marianna Di Tommaso
Aptitude meets in Miami with Giuseppe Cipriani whose name has written
the history of the famous Italian reastaurants around the world.
Cipriani Miami is the Florida base of a long history that begins with
Harry’s Bar in Venice, Italy, where the Cipriani family started in the
hospitality business in 1931.
So much has been written about you and your family and their history of success. Tell me something about your family that nobody knows.
Maybe not everyone knows that there is a brand new representative of our family’s fifth generation named after our first restaurant in Venice.
What would you say is the largest reason behind Cipriani’s success?
I don’t think there is one big reason but rather many components. Hard work and passion for four generations now, a style that does not impose, simple flavours served with love, a happy and relaxing atmosphere, and some luck.
What is your favorite dish?
The list is long and it depends on the mood and the situation. I can go from a typical Venetian dish like seppie in nero (squid in its own ink) to the most simple, but fantastic Norwegian crab with a touch of olive oil, and I can tell you that a perfectly cooked pasta al pomodoro always makes me happy.
What is your favorite place to travel to and why?
I typically try to open restaurants in cities that I like since I then have to spend quite some time in them. Recently, I have become very fond of Ibiza. There is some understated freedom and wonderful atmosphere in this naturally beautiful island that makes me want to spend as much time as I can there. Also Punta del Este where I can relax for a few days every year, that is a luxury!
Is Italy doing better after the big recession that started in 2008?
I think it’s improving but there is still a long way to go.
Tell us what you find to be the most obvious difference between serving American and Italian customers.
Considering that it is thanks to an American customer that my grandfather opened Harry’s Bar in 1931, I can say for sure that they are equally generous and they can both have a good soul.
Your son is now working at Miami’s Cipriani. Is he loving it here? Describe the relationship you have with him. Actually both my sons Maggio and Ignazio are involved in all the projects that we do. They are based in New York and travel to the various locations. The relatonship I have with them is of great respect and I try not to interfere with their decisions, even if we might think differently at times. They opened both Cipriani Downtown Miami and Mr. C Beverly Hills mostly on their own and I have to say I am very proud of them and of the results they are achieving. Miami has been growing so fast in the past few years.
What is your perception of this city?
Miami has become more and more international, with great hospitality offers, cultural richness, events throughout the years and many new vibrant areas that are developing every day.
What is your next goal, and your future plans?
We have a lot on the plate at the moment, both in the States and abroad. We are opening a restaurant in Mexico City at the beginning of May, one in Dubai at the end of the year, we are discussing other projects in Miami and Ibiza. This said, my goal is to keep doing what I am doing and having fun doing it for as long as I can.