Menus a no-no in Mau­r­izio’s new place

Guardian Express - - NEWS -

THEY say a change is as good as a hol­i­day and after 30 years in hos­pi­tal­ity, chef Mau­r­izio Di Ciano is liv­ing by that motto.

In a bid to re­main fresh and recharge his bat­ter­ies, Di Ciano is clos­ing down Perth’s Mau­r­izio Restau­rant in September after 17 years and open­ing No Menu in High­gate.

The Ital­ian-born chef, who has worked around the world in­clud­ing Lon­don and Switzerland, said he was keen to move from fine din­ing to be­spoke style.

Mau­r­izio started out in 2001 at the back of the cur­rent Fitzger­ald Street build­ing with no sign and just serv­ing lunch, be­fore de­mand saw an ex­pan­sion to din­ners on week­ends.

The busi­ness then moved to the front of the build­ing in 2004 after some ren­o­va­tions.

Di Ciano said he had seen many changes through­out the years and he was pre­pared to adapt.

“From when I first ar­rived in Aus­tralia to to­day we’ve seen some changes; we’ve seen ups and downs with the econ­omy and changes in peo­ple’s pal­ette,” he said.

“We don’t want to be a bor­ing restau­rant, which we have prob­a­bly been in the past, where for three or four months we have had the same menu.”

He said the shift from fine din­ing to be­spoke style came from cus­tomer de­mand, which wanted a ca­sual ex­pe­ri­ence.

“We mainly did fine din­ing be­fore, but I have found now that there’s a slow down on fine din­ing,” he said.

“High­gate is a busier sub­urb with more foot traf­fic and you can go more than once a week be­cause it is af­ford­able.”

The menu will change daily, dic­tated by what fresh pro­duce is avail­able on the day.

Di Ciano said some pres­sures would be al­le­vi­ated for him­self and staff, but oth­ers may be in­tro­duced.

“We are go­ing to play with dif­fer­ent dishes; each day one of the dishes would be the pro­tag­o­nist to of­fer as the dish of the day, but nev­er­the­less we will have other choices,” he said.

“It will add pres­sure on day by day re­search and chang­ing and mov­ing the stock, but also it will re­duce pres­sure be­cause with a set menu you can have up to 40 dishes, and some of them don’t move and you have to make them move.

“With be­spoke, we are look­ing at 20 dishes, maybe even 15.”

He said the change was as much about keep­ing up with de­mands as it was strik­ing a healthy work life bal­ance for him­self.

Pic­ture: Martin Ken­nealey d473314

Chef Mau­r­izio Di Ciano cel­e­brates his new restau­rant.

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