Chef at Tosca
When you smilin’, when you smilin
The whole world smiles with you ©
I do believe in good fortune and good people. I believe I am a good person. My mom told me so.
My name is Pino Lavarra and I am happy to do the things I do. I lead the kitchen in the legendary Ritz-Carlton in wonderful Hong-Kong.
My family comes from the Southern Italy. It is a sunny piece of Earth with hospitable people and bright colors. I was surrounded by friends, family and nature. This cocktail taught me to love life, enjoy its treasures and share my inner world with them.
My mom was a true Italian mom you might have seen in old films. She cooked as if sang an amazing song. And each time it was a new story. I percepted every single move she made, every ingredient she used and even the prayers she whispered. Probably that is why I am a chef of a super restaurant. Who knows.
I visited culinary school and worked as pizzaiola for 3 years. I was young and hungry to get new knowledge, new friends and a million cash. Joking of course.
I was called to civil army and cooked for the highest military men there. Was it scary? No! I was curious and bold. And still I am.
So, with my mom’s blessing and God smiling I started my long way to the kitchen Olympus. 30 years have passed in a sec! Can you imagine? 30 years of food experiments, ups and downs, new tastes and old places. Half of this period I am a Chef.
I worked in London. Great time of great errors. Now I can tell about them with laughter. But that period I should rather call a tournament. I worked in Michelin-starred restaurants and they really gave me life lessons and priceless experience.
In 2001 I returned to Italy to head a small hotel kitchen in Amalfi.
Although being a son of Italy, I love other lands as well. They attract me with their cuisine diversity, culture and history.
My heart belongs to Italian cuisine. Pizza, pasta and traditional desserts are 3 ground-holding points for me. I always have a secret place for them in my menu. That is why my restaurant guests get surprises every day.
Now I live in China and it seems like it will never stop surprising me. Now I own 2 Michelin stars and do not plan to give up. New professional horizons are still calling me. And it does not matter which language you speak. The food language will unite people all over the world. I will do my best for spreading this idea.
Dish on photo – Roasted langoustine with green beans pure, their cookies and veal trotters.
I’ve chosen this dish because I got inspired by a humble dish from the Cucina Povera.
I did a lot of experiments and research using premium ingredients. Such as giant langoustine and seasoning it with black truffle vinaigrette. I have lifted this dish to a completely different level.
The Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong
Level 102, International Commerce Ctr.
1 Austin Road West
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Phone: 852 2263 2270
Relive the passion and enchantment of one the world’s most beloved operas through the inspired cuisine of Tosca. High ceilings, stately fountains and majestic chandeliers lend a Romanesque feeling to this stylish dining destination, open for lunch and dinner. The innovative Italian menu features improved favorites and thrilling interpretations of the region’s notable cuisine, and an open kitchen allows guests an even more theatrical dining experience.