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The Guidelines




1. Preamble

Unioncamere with the operational support of IS.NA.R.T. (National Institute of Research on Tourism, a Chambers of Commerce company) with the aim of enhancing the Italian restaurants abroad, ensuring compliance with quality standards typical of Italian hospitality, has promoted the project “ITALIAN HOSPITALITY, ITALIAN RESTAURANTS IN THE WORLD”.

The Coordination Committee, a body of governance of the project, has defined and is maintaining this Technical specifications laying down the requirements that the Italian restaurants abroad must meet in order to obtain the label "Italian Hospitality, Italian Restaurants in the World".

2. Purpose and field of application

The guideline is general valid at the international level; it consists of the following 10 rules, and is:

  • Identity and Italian Distinctiveness
  • Reception
  • Mise en Place
  • Kitchen
  • Menu
  • Gourmet Offer
  • Wine List
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Experience and Competence
  • PDO and PGI Products

Each rule is declined into specific requirements that are described below.

There are five essential requirements (KO), which if not met result in failure to release the label. The essential requirements identified in the text in bold, concern gourmet offer, hospitality, wine, extra virgin olive oil, experience and expertise of the chef.

3. Requirements

  • Identity and Distinctiveness

    a. Interior is well kept and recall Italian tradition through the presence of distinctive elements (pictures, photos, furnishings typical of Italy and of Italian design).
    b. The restaurant has developed specific means of communication, also in Italian language (eg. website, brochures, etc..) to express the Italian identity of the restaurant (such as the bond between the caterers and Italian territory, a description of type of cuisine, the presence of Italian chef or a chef who got cooking training in Italy, indicating the origin of the Italian products used, etc. ..).
    c. The restaurant is listed in national or international guides.
    d. The restaurant promotes gastronomic culture and tradition through specific initiatives such as theme nights, wine tastings, books presentations, magazines, cookbooks, guides, etc...
    e. There is a space dedicated to the promotion and / or purchase of PDO and PGI in which it is also possible to receive information.
    f. The name recalls the Italian origin of the restaurant

  • Reception

    a. The restaurant must have at least one person able to relate with customers in Italian. (Essential Requirement - KO)
    b. The staff is easily identifiable and able to explain the main characteristics of Italian traditional dishes.
    c. The restaurant has separate areas for smokers and nonsmokers and wardrobe / hanger available to customers.
    d. The area outside the restaurant is neat, clean and illuminated.

  • Mise en place

    a. The mise en place (plates, dishes, cutlery, table linen) is of design and / or Made in Italy.
    b. There are several types of glasses used in relation to the type of beverage served and cutlery - not plastic - depending on the type of dish served.
    c. The dishes are porcelain.
    d. The tablecloths, if any, is clean, not damaged and not repaired.
    e. There are decorative elements on the table (eg. flowers, candles, ornaments).

  • Kitchen

    a. In relation to the dishes in the menu, the kitchen has adequate equipment and personnel.
    b. The kitchen is in view of the customer.

  • Menu

    a. The name of the courses included in the menu is also in Italian language.
    b. The menu is divided into categories of food (eg starters, first dishes, second dishes, etc).
    c. The menu is prepared using materials and graphics of quality.

  • Gourmet Offer

    a. The percentage of traditional Italian dishes and recipes should not be less than 50% of the total dishes on the menu. This ratio should be reached with the significant contribution of each type of course. (Essential Requirement - KO)
    b. The main products used for the preparation of Italian cuisine on the menu (eg pasta, canned vegetables, cheese, etc..), are of Italian origin.
    Note: If you can not find Italian products because of specific prohibition of importation or very unfavourable conditions (eg customs duties, etc. ..) the restaurateur has to highlight the references to restrictive measures and / or national laws that prohibit the use of these specific products.
    c. The restaurant offers cheese and sausage of Italian origin.
    d. The restaurant offers Italian espresso.

  • Wine list

    a. The wine list must contain Italian wines PDO or PGI (DOC, DOCG, IGT) not less than 30%. However there must be at least 5 Italian wines PDO or PGI. (Essential Requirement - KO)
    Note 1. The requirement may be excluded for the restaurants located in foreign countries which have imposed an outright ban of importation, as in the case of some Arab countries.
    Note 2. In case of very unfavourable marketing conditions, which will be highlighted by the caterer, the requirement of 30% can be excluded. However, it must be verified by the prevailing presence of Italian wine than any other European competitors (France, Spain, etc. ..) and in any case must be at least 5 Italian wines PDO or PGI.
    b. The wine list includes Italian sparkling wines.
    c. The wine list shall indicate the PDO or PGI, the name of the winery / producer and the region of origin.
    d. The restaurant offers liqueurs and spirits of Italian origin.

  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil

    a. The restaurant must offer, for a dressing, only extra virgin olive oil DOP / IGP of Italian origin and Italian extra virgin olive oil. (Essential Requirement - KO)
    b. Italian extra virgin olive oil is used in the preparation of dishes.
    c. The customer can choose between several Italian extra virgin olive oils or PDO / PGI products of Italian origin.

  • Experience and Competence

    a. The chef must be qualified for the preparation of dishes and Italian recipes through at least one of the following requirements (Essential Requirements - KO):
    - professional certificate of Italian cooking obtained at an institution of repute;
    - training at a restaurant in Italy for not less than 6 months;
    - experience in Italian cuisine, even in an Italian restaurant abroad, not less than 3 years.

    b. The staff has participated in the preparation of meals to retraining activity on Italian cuisine.

  • PDO and PGI Products

    a. The cuisine offered includes the use of Italian PDO and PGI products for food preparation or serving.