There are many reasons we have to look forward to the opening of FOO’D by Davide Oldani (chef and owner of Michelin-starred D’O in Milan) at Shangri-La at The Fort this weekend. High on that list would be our now favorable proximity to a plate of his famed risotto Milanese, because no one cooks risotto quite like him—not even your best friend’s nonna. And lest we forget his signature caramelized onion tart topped with 24-month aged Grana Padano warm mousse and cold ice cream, finished with Maldon salt.
But perhaps what may interest Manila’s dining class the most about his new opening in partnership with Foodee Global Concepts led by the father and son tandem Rikki and Eric Dee—the names behind the successful Todd English Food Hall and Tim Ho Wan—is the chef’s ability to deliver remarkable gastronomic POP creations at accessible price points. The 50-seater restaurant with an adjacent cocktail lounge is, for now, a la carte only offering three and four - course tasting menus that begin at P800. The initial offering consists of the cipolla caremelata, the Spring chicken and prawn with veal jus entree, and the house's special dessert, a lemon curd served with dehydrated meringue, cacao crumble, curry almonds, and lettuce gelato.
At his restaurant D’O, his brand of Cucina Pop, where he serves seasonal menus that reflect his culinary ingenuity, has gained worldwide fame not only because of its high quality gourmet offerings but also due to the democratic pricing he has been able to achieve. Oldani’s refined technique—learned in part from his mentors Gualtiero Marchesi, Michel Roux, and Alain Ducasse—along with his playful sense of style, as evidenced by his use of self-designed tableware such as wine glasses with uneven rims and a passe-partout, better known locally as a “spork,” has become part of the restaurant’s spirited allure. His winning business model has become so popular among restaurateurs, that it has even been the subject of a Harvard Business School case study.
Chef Davide Oldani
Catapulted recently to poster boy fame as an ambassador of Italian cuisine for Expo Milan 2015, Oldani has been cooking at his simple and cozy 40-seat trattoria for over a decade, and his Manila opening marks his first international venture. Despite its off-center location in Cornaredo, a small town outside of central Milan, a table at D’O has been one of the most difficult reservations to secure that side of Italy. In 2014, he opened a café at Milan’s Malpensa airport and last summer, he opened a fancier, Piero Lissoni designed-space, adjacent to his original dining room that has doubled his seating capacity.
Open for lunch and dinner with dinner reservations at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. only. Ground Floor, Shangri-La at The Fort, Taguig; 950.8492; 0917.7114469