Hand in hand, step by step
A bond is one so unified that you nearly cease to see it. Ciccio and Gabriella – the chef and the woman of Duomo – are this way, like boiling water or an ironed napkin. A seamlessly understated way to approach the ingredients, to examine them in order to let them shine. The ability to observe things and people; instinctive and attentive; decisive but never in haste, with a sustainable outlook and clear perspective.
A bond is when you stay together for a project that is greater than you; that confines you to a certain place, sealing you within a story every single moment of each day.
The story is that of Sicilian cuisine: characterized by many influences, conscious of its roots and yet free to transcend them, safeguarding tradition and upholding experimentation. Sicily: island of islands, a continent in and of itself – as big as some North European countries – an island world, at home in Ragusa Ibla.
What I do
‘I’m a cook. I transform products into food using all five senses with an inclination for taste and touch. Tasting and touching creates and evolves first impressions. Then the mind comes into play, but not before there is a direct contact…a certain physicality.’
It is from this idea of physicality that Ciccio Sultano’s cuisine is always moving between sea and land, memories of home and travels abroad, high culture and popular culture, a monumental past and present, encompassing heart and mind, always with a certain finesse. ‘We are not scared of change, because our roots run deep.’ In loving an ingredient comes a desire to transmit feelings, because one who loves, loves out of respect.
Inside the dish
‘In my kitchen and inside my dishes are natural elements and human elements. Products are selected with obsessive care, in cooperation with the worthiest names in agriculture and food. These relationships have been founded, sustained and promoted resulting in a trusted network. Like good wine, quality begins first in the vineyards and then the cellar. “I uphold three elements above all others: oil, wheat and salt. Without them I wouldn’t be Sicilian, or a chef. They give value and sense to my logo.’