If Dubai today is a city with a burgeoning Italian Cuisine, to the point of hosting its World Summit, the most important Italian culinary event outside Italy, it’s also due to people as Andrea Mugavero, Executive Chef of Roberto´s, the high successful Italian restaurant. For many years Andrea has been a pioneer of quality Italian Cuisine in Dubai and the UAE. Before Roberto’s he was the Chef of Bice in the Hilton Hotel, one of the first Italian restaurants in the Emirates, which opened in the first years of the current century.
”It was another Dubai, not the New one of nowadays”, remembers Andrea, “we had to introduce almost all the good Italian ingredients, there was very little here”. Chef Mugavero arrived here after four years in Istanbul and two in Marbella (Spain), always with the Bice group. He was still young but had plenty of experience: from the first jobs in his native Sicily he went to Montecarlo, where had the responsibility of the first brigades.
One of the secrets of Andrea´s career is the harsh days of his youth: “My family didn’t swim in gold, I had to start to work very early, very hard and learn quickly”, says Chef Mugavero. With the years he achieved the skills and the wisdom that made him eventually one of the most relevant “educators” to authentic and quality Italian Cuisine in Dubai.
“At Bice the most important food lovers in town were regular clients”, he proudly points out. It has been that clientele of gastronomic opinion leaders that created the basis for the boom of Italian Cuisine in the Emirates. Between those customers who loved Andrea´s cuisine – a tasty combination of dishes from Tuscan, Southern Italian and Sicilian cuisine – there was also the owner of the future Roberto’s, who wanted Andrea as both a partner and chef founder of the Restaurant.
Once again Andrea didn’t betray the expectations: Roberto’s is today at the forefront of the quality Italian cuisine in town and at the same time is one of busiest restaurant in town as well. “That’s our challenge”, says Andrea, “even with 6-700 customers daily, our levels of quality are of the highest”. The secret? “First of all, our kitchen team, in which chef Luca Signoretti has a very important role, and then, the quality of ingredients: we use only the best from Italy”.
True to his role of a “father” of Italian cuisine in Dubai, Andrea has been an enthusiastic supporter of the Summit . “Since the first moment chef Luca Signoretti told me about it, I thought that the Summit is something important for Dubai and it represents the future Italian Cuisine here”, the chef concludes