Mauricio Giovanini

Born in Cordoba in Argentina, Mauricio Giovanini studied at a local French gastronomy college. In 2003, shortly after relocating to Spain and settling in Marbella, he and his wife Pia took the plunge and opened their rst restaurant, “Messina”. The tiny original premises occupied a humble side street corner, hidden in the old town away from the tourist shops and orange trees. With barely enough room for 20 patrons, word of Messina’s innovative fare spread fast nonetheless throughout the region’s established restaurant scene. A self-taught chef is a rare nd indeed yet Mauricio is just that. Not for him the usual training ground of a stint in some famous svengali’s kitchen. Mauricio has always been his own boss on his own turf. A brave choice, perhaps, but ultimately one which has allowed him to develop unique skills.

In this age of high prole culinary posturing, an emerging chef might struggle to forge an identity. Having already found his feet among his peers, Mauricio’s eureka moment came when he toyed with the development of essential vegetable juices.

Mauricio knows that the source of avour of all vegetables lies in their natural moisture. Once coaxed from the esh of their host, these essential juices are used to enhance some of his existing preparations, creating a sensory panorama of concentrates, meringues, creams and broths. Ground-breaking stuff, certainly, and an unexpected early trademark for Mauricio, but what next? Mauricio currently works with natural thickeners made from dried fruit and collagen extracted from sh and various kinds of meat. By combining these elements and altering their respective proportions, he makes his own gelatins which can be adjusted to create countless different textures.

This was the work Mauricio presented at Madrid Fusion 2017, arguably the world’s most important gastronomy exhibition and where his show of expertise was lauded as one of the highlights of the event.

With Messina repeatedly hailed by the national press, Mauricio has a long list of awards to his name. The greatest recognition of his work thus far, however, is without doubt the Michelin Star awarded to Messina in the 2016 Guide and renewed once again in 2017.