These days, we're seeking comfort more than ever. Comfort in the company of loved ones. Comfort in our homes. And, of course, comfort food. When we want something to seek solace in, Italian food is our natural go-to, which is why we love Domenica so much. One of Amsterdam's most special spots, Domenica serves up delicious food with laid-back vibes. What more could you want? We chatted with the mastermind behind it all, Flavio Ghignoni Carestia. Keep reading to get all the juicy details!
gloobles: Domenica has become one of our favorite places in Amsterdam. What was the idea behind it?
Flavio: Ciao! Domenica is a city-bistro focused on fresh Mediterranean cuisine & specially selected continental wines. Our concept is simple: a laid-back ambiance where the interaction between guests, service staff & kitchen play a crucial role in the enjoyment of the restaurant experience.
gloobles: Sounds like exactly what we need right now! So, have you always been into food?
Flavio: Growing up in a classic Italian family, I was brought up with a classic Italian reverence for good cooking that is celebrated around a table with friends & family. After university (I have a diploma in macroeconomics) when I was 26, I followed my dream and attended a famous cooking school in Rome. After that, I moved to Holland, where I became the chef of a famous Italian restaurant in Amsterdam called Toscanini. Finally, Domenica opened its doors in December of 2018!
gloobles: Pretty cool you have a degree in macroeconomics! We can imagine that comes in handy when running a restaurant. What do you think sets Domenica apart from other places in Amsterdam?
Flavio: A unique location, with a terrace on the Noordermarkt and a view of the Prinsengracht. Daily fresh ingredients combined to create exciting, modern, Mediterranean comfort food, with a nod to the Italian classics. An outstanding wine menu, including a large selection of champagne at approachable prices. A friendly environment where the needs of each guest are always taken into consideration.
gloobles: Everyone who dines at Domenica always feels like part of the family. What do you think of the food scene in Amsterdam in general?
Flavio: We happily noticed a yearly improvement in dining in Amsterdam. We believe that as the quality increases, so will the positive feedback industry-wide.
gloobles: We've noticed that change too, and we are thrilled about it. If you’re not dining at Domenica, where do you like to eat in Amsterdam?
gloobles: It's hard to choose just one, no? How do you source your ingredients?
Flavio: Freshness is the key element. We work as organically & locally as we can. Sometimes it's hard to keep track of all our suppliers, but it is worth the effort!
gloobles: It really shows in the quality of your food, so it is totally worth it! What’s your favourite restaurant in the world?
Flavio: Difficult question. The most mind-blowing was Noma in Copenhagen, where I ate in 2014, or Mario Uliassi's overwhelmingly good fish restaurant in Senigallia - he managed to transform a beach hut into a 3-Michelin star restaurant while maintaining the original character. The place where I’d always like to return, however, is my grandmother's Christmas table: no offence to anyone!
gloobles: Oooh we can imagine your grandmother was a fantastic cook. What’s on your travel bucket list?
Flavio: Slovenia & Burgundy.
gloobles: Where do you see Domenica in 10 years?
Flavio: Exactly where it is now! Noordermark 7, Amsterdam ;).
gloobles: It will stand the test of time! Ok, last one. If you could dine with anyone in the world at Domenica, who would it be and why?
Flavio: Being an emigrant, I miss my family sometimes. Two of the most important ladies in my life, my aunt Laura & my sister Irene, haven’t visit the restaurant yet. I would love to see them in Domenica as soon as possible. Maybe they will after reading this article!