Aeolian Report: Ludovico De Vivo and the cuisine of Capofaro


It is impossible to recount the cuisine of the Capofaro Malvasia & Resort on the island of Salina, one of the loveliest structures of its type in all of Italy and property of the Tasca d’Almerita family, without stating an important premise. Having one’s own raw materials to work with is a privilege which few in the restaurant field enjoy. Not merely wine, therefore, but cereals, vegetables, legumes, fruit, and spices as well.

But in this case the Resort has gone even further. The garden is situated within the Resort itself, available and directly utilizable by the guests for marvelous juices and for vegetable extracts from a centrifuge; further away, below the hills, there are two and half additional acres (an entire hectare). Collaboration with high level artisans such as Giovanni Abagnale of the Gerardo Di Nola pasta firm, whom we met precisely at Capofaro, give further impulse to the work, based as it is on seeds and soil

A seaside vacation on an Aeolian Island, accordingly, can be transformed into a full-immersion gastronomical experience with therapeutic repercussions in terms of psycho-physical health: wine, nature, the sea, and sport, all working together for well being. The Resort extends over a certain area: built in an Aeolian style and with 15 acres (six hectares) all around it, it counts twenty rooms, all with their own terrace and a view. And, in addition: a fresh water pool, tennis courts, a cocktail bar with a panoramic terrace right over the sea and a view of Panarea and Stromboli, an area for relaxation and a massage center in a garden cottage. Scooters and automobiles can be rented to better explore Salina and the Aeolian islands, and it is also possible to take a sail on the Don Felipe yacht.

Ludovico De Vivo

Ludovico De Vivo

To return to the house cuisine, the supervision of the Capofaro “food project” – in addition to the responsibility for other areas of the resort once high season is over – has been entrusted to Ludovico De Vivo. This chef, originally from Campania, from the province of Salerno to be precise, has had extensive international experience which includes stints at René Redzepi’s Noma in Copenhagen, the Chalet Peak and the Schweizerhof is Saas-Fee in Switzerland, Heston Blumenthal’s Fat Duck in London, the Grand Hotel in Amalfi, and Oliver Glowig’s restaurant at the Capri Palce Hotel on Capri.

The dishes have been created to go with the Aeolian summer, and they are light and very Mediteranean. High quality but not an unlimited series of choices: five hors d’oeuvres, four starters, five second courses, and five desserts. We can cite: the shashimi of amberjack (yellowtail), apples, Avola almonds and basil ice cream; the tartare of Modica beef with caviar of snails from the Madonia mountains and a cream of sheep’s milk and capers; thick Gragnano spaghetti with parsley water, cooked and crude mackerel, and crispy bread; saddled sea bream in the crust of black olives and Swiss chard; albacore in a sauce of red onions, pine nuts, and raisins along with a reduction of Capofaro Malvasia wine flavored with rosemary. To finish the meal: an Aeolian tiramisu with a cream-filled chocolate, sweet biscuit ice cream, a coffee ice, and a hint of capers; or a white chocolate mousse with fresh peas. Particular mention should be given to the patisserie and, above all, the bread. Soft and with a crisp crust, it is home made with the proper leavening.

The four course tasting menu costs €60 , while the series of four wines to taste with the various courses costs €30. We obviously suggest that you focus on the wines of the proprietary estates of Mozia, Etna, Regaleali, and Salina, but the wine list does not restrict itself solely to the production of the Tasca d’Almerita family and includes lovely bottles from Sicily, Italy, and abroad. The table service, supervised by the elegant and highly capable Vincenzo Saladino, is impeccable and the wine service is equally high level.

Tenuta Capofaro
Via Faro, 3
98050 – Salina Isole Eolie (ME)
tel. +39 090 98 44 330/1
mob. +39 338 63 33 999
fax +39 090 98 44 339


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