Congreso Internacional de mujeres gastronomía y medio rural


Viviana Varese makes a stand for traditional cooking

David Salvador


The Michelin-starred Italian is visiting FéminAs to announce her new restaurant and a focus: direct, traditional cooking.

Italian Viviana Varese (Salerno, 1974) was at the last day of the FéminAs congress on Wednesday to voice her support for local produce and proximity cooking. That is just what she does at her Viva* restaurant in Milan, with a certain amount of leeway, but this will not be the case at her new venture, a restaurant in Noto (Sicily) which will only be open during the summer season". “Now I'll have two souls, an urbanite soul in Milan and a soul in the deserted village of Noto. I'm happy”.

It will open in May as the WVillaDorata Country Restaurant, "and it will have the true flavour of Sicily". “I've been in haute cuisine for twelve years, with a lot of stress and a huge workload, and now I want to slow down a little and cook local, instinctive recipes", simple, "traditional" meals where "fire-cooking will be very important". She will be doing this at her new premises next to a biological biodynamic plantation with over 1,500 lemon plants, almonds etc. "and I'll get as much as I can out of them".

She had already focused on local produce and nature a few years ago when she opened her restaurant in Milan with a new gastronomic and decorative appeal, and found incentives during the pandemic. This has now taken her to another level with a non-permanent "direct" restaurant, where she will be working intensely with cactus or fig leaves, as demonstrated in several recipes at FéminAs.