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A Chinese-Italian Collaboration Dinner Comes to Manhattan

The latest wave of Italian cuisine mash-ups includes a San Pellegrino-sponsored dinner with chefs Wendy Cacciatori and Christine Lau at NYC’s Nonna Beppa on June 12.

Christine Lau and Wendy Cacciatori

Christine Lau and Wendy Cacciatori will cook together at a San Pellegrino Italian Chinese dinner at Nonna Beppa in NYC on June 12, 2024.

Well, you can’t say we didn’t see this coming. Earlier this year, Appetito predicted that “Italian Culinary Crossovers” would be one of the top 10 Italian Food and Drink trends for 2024, and the phenomenon shows no signs of slowing. The latest and most intriguing example comes next week in New York City, where Italian chef Giancarlo “Wendy” Cacciatori and Asian-American chef Christine Lau will collaborate on a San Pellegrino Italian Chinese Dinner at Nonna Beppa in SoHo in Manhattan.

The menu for the unique dining event includes an enticing menu of dishes that lean mostly Italian but with Chinese ingredients introducing perhaps unexpected flavors. For example, a pasta course will take linguine and clams into new territory with the addition of fermented black beans, a traditional Chinese way to add umami to a dish.

San Pellegrino and Acqua Panna initiated the dinner, bringing together two accomplished chefs with loyal followings. Cacciatori is chef-owner of the host restaurant, Nonna Beppa, as well as Via Emilia 9 in Miami Beach. Both restaurants focus on the cuisine of Emilia-Romagna, Cacciatori’s home region (he’s from Bologna). Thanks to a recent video with Harper’s Bazaar, Cacciatori is now known in part for being Gisele Bünchen’s favorite chef. 

Lau, meanwhile, was the opening chef behind Kimika, one of the first restaurants in New York to focus on Ita-Meshi, a mix of Italian and Japanese culinary ideas and flavors. Born and raised in the Bay Area to parents from Hong Kong, she moved to New York to study at NYU, then found her culinary calling working at top Manhattan restaurants including Alto and Bar Basque. Since leaving Kimika, she has consulted and serves as chef at Chino Grande in Williamsburg, with a mix of Chinese-American and Latin flavors and dishes.

For the Italian Chinese dinner, Cacciatori and Lau will serve a three-course menu plus snacks for the table for $125 per person (not including beverages). Reservations and the full menu are available on Resy.

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