03 May Cristina Bowerman on state of art italian cusine
Born in Cerignola – in Puglia, south Italy – Chef Cristina Bowerman is not the typical Italian woman, nor the typical Italian chef. Instead of hewing to merely traditional Italian dishes, she found it much more interesting to innovate her native cuisine using outside influences. A visit to the United States sparked this desire. After studying foreign languages and then graduating with a law degree, she moved to San Francisco, where she worked at Higher Grounds coffee shop. The multitude of ethnicities in the city served to inspire her to pursue a culinary career.
After reading about Elena Arzak’s success, and realizing that women did have a place in the professional kitchen, Bowerman moved to Austin, Texas, where she attended Le Cordon Bleu. She then worked at several restaurants, including the prestigious Driskill Grill. But the lure of home drew Bowerman back to Italy, where she first worked at Convivio Troiani and then later opened Glass Hostaria and the experimental gourmet chef & bakery Romeo in Rome.
Because of her constantly curious approach to cooking— to seek inspiration anywhere, be it the grocery store, the street, or another restaurant—has led to a constantly evolving menu and she has contributed to Rome’s modern transformation. And her innovative take on regional Italian fare garnered her two forks from the Gambero Rosso guide and a Michelin Star in 2010,the only woman for that year.
Her “history” and that one of the restaurant Glass became a case study at Bocconi University in the 2010 program, since several years she is director and professor of cooking courses at various Italian and foreign schools. Awarded to Identity Greedy, 2013, Cristina continues to cultivate her passion for cooking and she always studies with a particular attention to the application of science in cooking.
Photo credits: Brambilla-Serrani.