Italy – Top Chef

Mauro Uliassi

Senigallia - Marche

Mauro Uliassi 2023 09 25 20 48 10

A talented chef who has poured heart and soul into the success of his restaurant, “Uliassi”, officially confirmed by the Three MICHELIN Stars. But excellent food is not the only goal; innovation closely follows in the Lab where Mauro and his team test new ideas.

Mauro Uliassi was born in 1958 in Senigallia. His parents, Franco and Bianca Maria, owned a bar, where he began helping out alongside his sister Catia, positively interacting with the public from a young age. This grassroots upbringing would be fundamental in developing his style, which has always remained faithful to the values of democratic, understandable avant-garde for everyone, centered on the client.

Initially, he enrolled in a technical institute, but quickly realized it wasn’t for him and transferred to a hotel management school, where he would return for many years as a professor. Over time, he became passionate and grew convinced that this was his path. He started working summers as a bartender on the Riviera Romagnola, followed by some time in France. It was while working at “Fauchon” in Paris that he met his wife and future mother of his children, Chantal.

At the insistence of his mother Bianca, Uliassi opened his first venue in Senigallia in 1986, “Pizzeria da Mauro”, but left after just three months. Four years later, in 1990, he tried again, acquiring the current “Uliassi” restaurant, located on the velvet beach of Senigallia. His training was unique for the time: no big names on his resume, but various experiences, often in hotels with solid chefs, beyond academic foundations. Then one day, he learned about the existence of “ElBulli” from an article by Davide Paolini and immediately packed his bags. “I was shocked by the ability to reinterpret the ingredients and the energy of the cuisine. For me, it was a radical change in perspective on everything I had seen, the stimulus to experiment and try new ways to express the product.” It was 1998, and nothing would ever be the same again.

In the beginning, it was a humble restaurant, where you could enjoy honest seafood cuisine in a convivial and relaxed atmosphere managed by Catia, complete with draft wine. However, this was enough to fill the restaurant: hard work, a desire to do well, and the choice to reinvest all profits in the business. Thus, in 1994, the first unexpected MICHELIN Star arrived, which he initially did not fully understand. But it encouraged him to continue investing and raising the bar. In 2008, the second Star arrived, and in 2018, the restaurant was consecrated with the third Star while already firmly at the top of all Italian guides and advancing in the world rankings. The avant-garde culinary research always seeks connections in shared taste memories.

The secret to maintaining creative tension also lies in the Lab, which takes place for forty days inside the closed restaurant each year. Here Mauro leads a team composed of his most trusted collaborators, such as his brother-in-law Mauro Paolini, Luciano Serritelli, and Yuri Raggini. They proceed with all-encompassing brainstorming before moving on to testing at the stove. For inclusion in the menu, the chief's approval is essential, but the creative process is collective and brings the energy of pluralism to the meal, always in harmony. And this is not the only uniqueness of the house. Here, the balance between private and professional life has been pursued from unforeseen times, with three months of closure a year, making the brigade extraordinarily stable. Uliassi also chose not to open other venues, such is their commitment to achieving excellence and consistency at the tables.


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