The Alchemy of Beauty: Chef Bottura redefines the right elements
Massimo Bottura knows how to mobilize, but it’s his vision that brings people together. In the Chef’s words “You’ll only see imperfection if you don’t look with poetic eyes.”
Building bridges through food begins with a shift in perspective, a willingness to break through barriers, and an intention of coming together to learn from each other. A talent for forming connections is like having an eye for beauty – it is knowing where to find value, starting with how to look. With the right optics, beauty can be found everywhere and according to chef Massimo Bottura, it is a precise alchemy of elements that transform the ordinary, into poetry around us.
During a particularly warm spring amidst the grassy plains in Modena, Italy, a group of makers, Founders, Chefs, entrepreneurs and other leaders from around the world were brought together by a passion for food and a collective curiosity to experience a more complete view of Massimo Bottura’s world, and get a glimpse of what makes him the master culinary storyteller he is. The Chef’s mythical private estate, Casa Maria Luigia, was an idyllic setting to melt into the mood of slow-living, a key element of Bottura’s philosophy.
Lined with trees and surrounded by manicured gardens, Casa Maria Luigia includes a cozy state of the art communal kitchen with a fridge filled with freshly prepared and locally sourced goodies for guests, made with produce grown on the property. Music floats from the music room, with walls lined from top to bottom with records, playing the chef’s favorite jazz artists like Charlie Bird Parker and Miles Davis. Bottura’s childhood friend Marco Bizzarri has made sure the estate is trimmed from wall to ceiling with Gucci’s finest pieces from the brand’s home collection, mixed in with classic and modern furnishings from famous designers like Eileen Gray, and Mies van der Rohe, mixed in with original frescos across the ceiling and contemporary art against original exposed brick walls.
Convening with other like-minded individuals of all ages and backgrounds, the hosted experience is more than a moment to reflect, but also a challenge to redefine beauty and explore purpose. A unique mix of perspectives ignites creativity and drips inspiration that affects each person deeply and differently.
Each guest is multi-faceted in their talents and interests, and full of stories of their own. A modest award-winning author pulls a guitar pick from his pocket from his equally famous heavy metal band, that Rolling Stone called “Pulp Fiction at its breeziest best.”. A demure,3 Michelin Star chef and an American Latina luxury real estate Director chat about living between Chicago and Miami on the way to meet Massimo Bottura for inspiring discussions over wine in his art gallery and garage. A space that houses his favorite Ducati motorcycles and Ferraris, the area doubles as an art gallery with original pieces covering the walls. A professor from University of Berkeley and a talented 20-yr old cook, passionate about the craft, brought to meet his culinary idol, mingle alongside a street-wise youth activist pastor, and an empathic New Yorker – a self-described bridge-builder, while Massimo revs engines and hearts in the background.
The guests are companions on a journey to rediscover the elements of beauty according to Massimo Bottura with moments designed to create discussion. A personal journey as much as a shared one, the impact of the experience goes far beyond getting to eat at the famed Osteria Francescana and even beyond the words he uses to describe his craft. An exclusive invitation leads to the gem of Bottura’s heart, the tortellini-making school and kitchen, Tortellante. A culinary lab with a mission, the organization employs and trains autistic teens in the culinary field, preparing them for the workplace in a bright setting, with a devoted multi-generational staff and clientele, committed to providing equal opportunity for the Autistic community.
An experience that invites reflection and transformation, each moment and stop along the way is a walk through Massimo Bottura’s vision, unraveling the elements of his belief that, “beauty changes your perspective on life”.
Extraordinary people, assembled for the shared purpose of discovery and learning, is no ordinary occasion. What makes the experience last is how it becomes a part of each person that was there, and what it inspires them to be in the future.
As the seasons change this November presents an opportunity to join a Hosted Experience with Massimo Bottura. This journey of transformation through culinary advocacy, slow living, and a new approach to learning with Massimo Bottura is an all-inclusive itinerary organized by Satopia Travel. Guests can join by submitting a booking application directly to Satopia Travel on their website, groups are small to create an intimate experience and often fully booked well in advance.