Dazed Digital

Rome / Italiano

Il Cattedra

March 21, 2012

A local spotlight on one of the most institutional figures of the Roman contemporary dolcevita

  • Text by Satellite Voices

Guest Feature by Giulia Ruberti

Alessandro Cattedra is a Roman staple; he organises all sorts of events and runs "Il Fico" - Rome’s hot spot where you can eat, drink and be seen. He has been living and working in Rome all of his life and loves it. 

Satellite Voices: Alessandro what ties you so much to Rome?
Alessandro Cattedra: First of all it’s the most beautiful city in the world. It's allure is so strong that problems seem to fade away, especially from Spring to October. I don’t agree with people saying that it’s too slow, that there are no prospects. Rome actually offers many possibilities but one must put a little effort into discovering them.

SV: Give us some tips on what to do/see when in town
Alessandro Cattedra: Rome is full of secret places that not even the people living here know about. For example, there is this one restaurant in La Garbatella (a quintessential Roman district) called Li Scalini di Marisa that is run by women only: daughter, mother, aunt and grandmother. It’s in the courtyard of an amazing building. The food is great but you need to know the password in order to eat there.

SV: Which is?
Alessandro Cattedra: “Down with men."

SV: What about the nightlife?
Alessandro Cattedra: I love house parties. Otherwise my favourite club is Vicious, which in a way has a homely feel to it. I’m not into the big DJ scene; I tend to prefer more spontaneous environments. What makes Rome cool is that it totally lacks in cool. It’s an easygoing and lazy place and this makes it unique. You can relax; go spend some time at the park.

SV: Do you have a favorite one?
Alessandro Cattedra: Villa Panfili. In fact my dream is to do something within a park but it’s not easy. I would like to create an environment that includes music, sport, wellbeing and food, maybe by setting up a permanent structure. It’s all still in my head.

SV: You run a restaurant, and food has come up various times during this interview. Are you a food lover?
Alessandro Cattedra: Yes. Cooking is a big passion of mine. I love to invite people over for dinner and take good care of them. I never separate from my minipimer, even when travelling.

SV: Can you give us a recipe? Something easy for all those that - like me - don’t cook and have no clue what a minipimer is.

Pasta al pesto “Cattedra style” (recipe for 6 people):

- Pesto (don’t buy a cheap one!) 
- Pulp of 3 oranges
- 1 handful of almond
- 1 handful of pecorino romano
- A few salt-packed capers  
- Whilst the pasta is cooking, get some of the cooking water and blend it with the pesto
- When the pasta is ready mix it with the pesto and the other ingredients and that’s it. Or as I usually say to my guests “Senti che ti magni” (in Roman slang, "Feel what your eating"). 

SV: And with which wine would you serve it?
Alessandro Cattedra: A rosé, that reminds me of bucolic times.

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