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“Osteria Francescana is Italy’s most celebrated restaurant. At Osteria Francescana, chef Massimo Bottura takes inspiration from contemporary art to create highly innovative dishes that play with Italian culinary traditions. It’s an approach that has won him three Michelin stars and the number one place on the World’s 50 Best Restaurant list. “

Massimo Bottura is winning in every way, which, as anyone is the restaurant industry knows, is nothing short of miraculous. Thin margins, intense competition, and an ever evolving and volatile market make being successful in the food industry an enormous task that overtakes even the most talented and experienced chefs and entrepreneurs. But there are a few, like Massimo, that navigate the culinary squalls with poise and championship. And today we are going to look at his approach in an effort to derive repeatable strategies and tactics that anyone can take and implement into their model.

Vision

The first thing that is obvious is that Massimo has a tremendous passion for food and a clear vision for the impact he wants it to have on the world that extends much further than just running a world-class restaurant. Bottura’s vision drives him to manage what has to be an overwhelmingly intense schedule and lifestyle, but it makes the entirety of his model and artistic expression function with a coherence and efficiency that most completely miss. Without a clear vision, for your food, culture, and legacy, it’s impossibly difficult to execute without loss and waste. 

 

Impact

The next thing I see that drives Massimo’s success is his passion for making an impact. Massimo is sharing his vision in every possible way, whether it be by building the world’s best restaurant, shooting a Netflix special, or publishing his book “Never Trust a Skinny Chef”, Massimo is doing all he can to create a platform for himself to share his ideas on food and cooking. His passion for innovating the fine dining experience, ecological consciousness, feeding the needy with kitchen surplus, and building communities of the next generation tortellini rollers is reaching people on a very deep, emotional level. Massimo is having an impact on the culinary world that creates a connection to his brand you cannot buy. People are invested in his success because he is invested in theirs, and it is having a tremendous impact on his business and his legacy. 

 

Creativity

“Massimo Bottura is the Jimi Hendrix of Italian chefs… he takes familiar dishes and classical flavors and techniques and turns them on their heads in a way that is innovative, boundary-breaking, sky kissing, and entirely whimsical, but ultimately timeless, and most importantly, deliciously satisfying.” —Mario Batali

 

I think this speaks to Massimo’s genius and craft in a way that leaves most aspiring chefs stumbling. A lot of ambitious chef’s take creative liberties with their food and its traditions, but often times they forget that, first and foremost, the food needs to be palatable. The creative process, the desire to do something new, innovative, even provocative, often overtakes the objective of serving a good, satisfying meal. The culinary world craves new experiences, and it will reward you handsomely for them, but first it demands that they taste good. 




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