Landing in Capri with love: Manuel, Stash and the contemporary cuisine of Calamore
Long ago Stash, the singer of The Kolors, during a trip to Abruzzo, had lunch in my restaurant “Le frit c’est chic” and, delighted by the things we prepared, said: “I want to take this project to Capri”.
It seems the beginning of a novel but instead it is the beginning of a great adventure: Calamore, a place that offers seafood dishes with a contemporary concept. The idea was born from the meeting between Manuel D’Alessandro and Stash: to develop a new brand of authenticity that puts first the quality of raw materials. A fast and dynamic format, but at the same time not a trivial one, which enhances the products of the territory through a menu of fish, combined as you prefer: from salmon to cuttlefish noodles, from anchovies to seafood salads… “Ours“, Manuel tells us, “is a kind of modern gastronomy. The concept is to give the opportunity to enjoy seafood as quick meals, to share in front of one of the most beautiful sunsets on Capri“. The menu designed for Calamore is located halfway between tradition and discovery of contemporary flavors: “We offer a line of seafood sandwiches, stuffed with cod, octopus carpaccio, tuna, salmon and much more. Not only: we have created a sort of revisitation of the traditional “cuoppo”, to bind us to the Neapolitan tradition, but keeping our idea of not serving fried food to customers. This is how the “Cuoppoke” is born, a poke of Venus rice or cereals topped with fresh fish. The idea is that it should not be our kitchen to adapt to this dish now that it has become fashionable, but the poke itself must be adapted to approach our tradition. To date, it is one of the most appreciated dishes among our proposals!“
But why choose the island to start this new adventure? “We came on holiday to Capri thanks to the friendship between Valerio Pagano and Stash, who have been working together for a long time and are the artistic directors of That’s Amore Capri 2023; Valerio was the glue between us and the island. As for the name we gave to our business, there is a curious anecdote behind his choice: we were in the car and, on the way back from Milan, Stash on the highway said: “You don’t know how much I would eat a squid skewer right now, I would stop right now to get one!“. So I said, “This is true love for “calamaro”!“… And that’s how the name Calamore was born. We immediately noticed how it is a name that has appeal and it’s just right for Capri, a place with many fascinating views, an island that inspires love at 360°”.
Obviously, the main dish of Calamore’s proposal is the squid skewer, which gave its name to this culinary experience, halfway between restaurant and street food; but you can also enjoy octopus or cuttlefish salads, marinated, besides some proposals not from the sea… However, all fast, true and authentic dishes.
“We do not aim for a specific target with Calamore; and from these first days of opening, we found that everyone likes the project. On the other hand, Capri is an effective test, since from here the whole world passes by. The people of Capri welcomed us very warmingly, perhaps because ours is an authentic proposal; but we also succeeded with foreign tourists. The next step? Who knows… we would like to take Calamore to other Italian and foreigners squares, but also replicate on the island, open a shop in Anacapri… For us this was a great starting point, and we are full of ideas and energy to move forward with our project“
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