Executive Spa Hotel: where taste meets luxury in Fiorano Modenese's trendiest destination.

La Redazione
copertina ok evento fiorano modenese

In the most exclusive dining spot between Fiorano and its surroundings, an experience that amplifies taste: the Executive Spa Hotel in a two-day total gourmet, from the 6-handed dinner to the Spa moment.

The hotel and the restaurant 

Fiorano Modenese is certainly not a tourist hub like those topping the list in Emilia. However, for the past couple of years, it has been among the top choices. Fiorano is on the lips of those in metallurgy, ceramics, and automotive industries. Its proximity to Maranello and the Ferrari myth is just a few minutes away. There's another reason why it's on many people's minds – for having the most exclusive dining spot in and around Fiorano: the EXECUTIVE SPA HOTEL.

alto ristorante e bar

The name lacks romanticism, territoriality, and design, yet this 4-star superior hotel is a kind of magic box for those seeking quality. From the outside, it looks like a large trapezoidal skeleton, a product of the non-adventurous design wing of the '70s. Let's create something solid, with edges. That’s the reason why you enter, what makes this hotel not one of the many stamped business hotels. High-end restaurants are usually found in hotels in tourist or charming natural locations. Here, they just are. And this year, both present restaurants are listed in the Michelin Guide.

ALTO Ristorante Sala tramanoto Fabrizio cicconi
@Fabrizio Cicconi

The EXÉ Restaurant, led by Chef de Cuisine Paolo Balboni, represents the more classic face of the dining offer. Cuisine tied to traditions and the local area. However, don't expect a trattoria atmosphere. The venue is elegant and modern, with well-spaced tables, and the service is handled by a youthful staff. Recently, the offer extends with a dedicated barbecue space. Paolo Balboni doesn't hide his art in meat cooking and barbecue-style seasonings.

EXE ristorante reference Fabrizio Cicconi
@Fabrizio Cicconi

On the top floor, there's a dual offering that would even make nearby Modena and Bologna envious. Calling it a rooftop might be a bit overpromising, but what's there fully lives up to expectations. On one side, ARIA, the cocktail bar where you can enjoy a convivial moment with the classic Italian aperitivo and an exclusive selection of drinks.

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rooftop fiorano modenese hotel

On the other side, ALTO, the fine dining restaurant led by the young chef Mattia Trabetti, where the Emilian territory is filtered through hypermodern techniques and a blend of tastes that lean more towards acidity. The restaurant's ambiance is adorned with objects and lighting designed by Barber & Osgerby for Flos and Gio Ponti for Richard Ginori. A chef table, which we've dubbed the chef window, allows two people to dine while overlooking the kitchen—a truly special point of observation and interaction.

mattia trabetti

The Spa

In addition to catering for sustenance, at EXECUTIVE, there's a whole floor dedicated to physical and mental "nourishment." The SPA is the ideal place to regenerate body and mind. Saunas, Turkish baths, sensory paths with chromotherapy are some of the offerings. Aesthetics also receive great attention, with the possibility of booking nail care services, hair removal, face, and body treatments with high-tech equipment.

spa fiorano modenese

We took advantage of a 30-minute relaxing massage, during which a professional made us lose track of time and space. The staff's professionalism is exemplary, always aiming to create the maximum comfort for customers, primarily with kindness and discretion. In our case, they asked about the intensity level of the massage. We suggested going for a medium-rare. There's also a well-equipped gym in a modern space with up-to-date equipment - not trivial - open to external guests, where you can engage in functional training, athletic preparation, core stability, and toning. All these specialties are coordinated and supervised by a personal trainer. Within such a standard container, with such an organizational name, it's the ideas that make the difference.

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Certainly credit goes to the director Francesco Corradi, who took risks and consistently offers something new for regular customers and anyone seeking fresh input to spend quality time. One of these ideas is the content of the second part of the narrative.

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The 6-Hands Dinner

In the kitchen, Mattia Trabetti has a Josper charcoal oven, while Paolo Balboni on the ground floor has just set up a station and a room to dive into with flame and charcoal. The concept of a six-hands dinner called for fire and direct cooking.

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It's natural that the third chef for the event could only be a firemaster like Errico Recanati, someone who has been steering his Michelin-starred restaurant at these temperatures, well before the trend of grilling and smoking emerged - essentially a throwback to the past. 

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The most unexpected choice fell on the wine pairing. The On Fire dinner had Veuve Cliquot as its partner. The Maison's champagnes accompanied each dish.

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Errico Recanati played with a variation of his famous spherical gnocchi stuffed with hare in salmi. The pairing with Veuve Cliquot Extra Brut Extra Old, made from reserve wines alone, convinced everyone with the balance and depth that both reflected on each other. Germano's Finanziera, eels, and grill-cooked morels was the most extreme dish of the evening, in terms of umami intensity. The Veuve Cliquot Vintage 2015 struggled to match its intensity.

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Chef Balboni had the most delicate pairing, with Veuve Cliquot La Grande Dame 2008, a legendary champagne in one of its legendary vintages. The choice fell on an "assembly" of boiled cuts, cooked on the BBQ, and plated like a hare royale.

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The clean entry of the sweet and smoky sauce and meat paired well with the structure and elegance of the Dame. Chef Trabetti's dessert Chestnuts, Pumpkin, and Chocolate, truly delightful, was paired with another gem from the Maison: the Vintage 2002 in Magnum format, created to celebrate the 250th anniversary.

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The next morning, in the breakfast room, Carlo Cracco's artisanal panettone awaited us as a preview of the Christmas atmosphere and as an energy breakfast for the visit to the Ferrari Museum in Maranello. The event concluded with lunch at ALTO. Mattia Trabetti presented a greatest hits selection from his restaurant menus, showcasing great technique and depth. The Emilian territory was filtered through Nordic aromas where acidity was the common thread in all the dishes.

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An extended acidity, the result of taste extraction. Memorable were Mushroom, Walnuts, and Parmigiano, and Royal Mallard, cardoncello mushrooms, and roasted green tea. For this journey, the wine offering exclusively featured wines from Emilia-Romagna, among which stood out the Sangiovese Superiore Mutiliana Acerreta 2020, confirming Modigliana's terroir as suitable for exceptional wines.

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