Heinz Beck has all the odds against him. He is German, cooks Italian, and makes healthy and balanced food in a fine dining restaurant. It requires courage, talent, but above all, a lot of love and determination. He left his country in 1994 and fell completely in love with Italy and the Mediterranean diet. His cuisine is a love letter to the country that he has adopted as his own.
Research is an essential part of his work. The chef acknowledges Italian classic cuisine, but also goes deeper into the concept of the Mediterranean diet. He has studied the important health effects of a balanced diet. At La Pergola, nutritional aspects are taken into consideration by Beck when he develops his dishes: “ I don’t want only to offer a lovely dinner, but also a healthy experience!”
He endeavours to stage ingredients in the best way using modern technology as a tool, and not as a priority in his kitchen. This is not a cuisine with extreme avant-garde experiences or one that is purely classic. It offers surprises and comfort without challenging the palate with unexpected flavours and textures. It is unique, luxurious but not pretentious, and some of the dishes are simply perfect!
A perfect dish: Crispy courgette flower with caviar, quail egg, shellfish and a saffron shellfish cream sauce
La Pergola is located within the fabulous hotel Rome Cavalieri, part of the exclusive collection of the Waldorf Astoria, and the restaurant and hotel share one common philosophy – perfection in service. From the concierge of the hotel, to the waiters in the restaurant, this is a place where comfort is taken seriously.
Hotel Rome Cavalieri - the perfect stage for the unforgettable La Pergola, the restaurant of chef Heinz Beck in Rome
The restaurant opens only for dinner. The staff is like a big family, and have been working with the chef for many years. They care about the place, enjoy their jobs, and are highly qualified professionals.
Heros De Agostinis Junior, Davide Pezzuto Junior, Heinz Beck and Emiliano Pascucci
You can feel that from the moment you enter La Pergola! They make you feel as if they trulyenjoy your presence, communicating with you as much as you wish, without being intrusive. Above all, you have the constant feeling of being surrounded by people who love their work, something that you don’t often find nowadays!
Umberto Giraudo and Nino Tarallo
There is an a la carteoption, but if you choose the tasting menu (6 or 9 courses), get ready for an evening of indulgence and happy surprises! Creative canapés, light starters and perfectly matched champagne and wines, often from small producers.
Marco Reitano, the Chef Sommelier arrives with two menus – water and wine. The wine menu is impressive, but the water menu even more so! Beck is a wine expert, and the harmony between food, wine and water is for him as important as the food itself. In the menu you can find the best of the season, highlights of the regional producers, and some signature dishes from the chef that have become famous around the world. His fagotelli a la carbonara is a masterpiece, combining conceptual simplicity, artisan work, and perfection in execution. Three elements that signify Beck’s work.
Heinz Beck is a chef who is present every day in his kitchen. He rarely takes part in events and congresses: “The kitchen is the priority for me. I love to cook. That is the reason why I became a chef!”
The cuisine of Heinz Beck is both elaborate and emotional. For the chef, this is not a contradiction.
A visit to La Pergola will end with a desire to return. This is a place to fall in love and one to remember. But, do not underestimate his apparently ‘non avant-garde approach’. There are many exciting surprises to make the hearts of gourmets and foodies beat faster! Even the most adventurous ones!
Luciana Bianchi is an Italian–Brazilian journalist, book author and trained chef with a background in Molecular Science. A frequent traveller and food researcher with more than 20 years experience in the field, she has worked in Michelin-starred restaurants, cooked for celebrities, interviewed most of the best international chefs, and has published work in 12 countries. Luciana is a member of the Guild of Food Writers UK, a writer of the Identità Golose Food Guide, and one of the authors of APICIUS. www.twitter.com/lucianabianchi | www.instagram.com/lucianabianchi