Patrizia di Benedetto, chef
The first female chef in Sicily to gain a Michelin star
Modern but with the intense flavours of traditional Sicilian cuisine. Creative, using the very finest ingredients, their taste exalted by the culinary techniques of haute cuisine: this is what you’ll find in our dishes.
1997 – L’Espresso restaurant guide:
award for best pâtisserie in the Italian restaurant sector
since 2010 – The Michelin Guide
2014 – The Gambero Rosso Guide:
2014 – L’Espresso Guide:
2015 Trip Advisor:
Certificate of Excellence
A female chef in Sicily, a story of courage and determination
“Running a kitchen is certainly very challenging for a woman,” asserts Patrizia Di Benedetto, “despite it perhaps being more instinctive, more natural for us. We women are biologically used to nourishing and looking after the whole family, putting a lot of care into preparing food as we raise our children. My style of cooking is decidedly female, and by female I mean that it’s all about instinct, sentiment, creativity.” In 1991 it really was rare to find a woman in a restaurant kitchen. You might have come across one in a family-run trattoria, of course. But haute cuisine was almost exclusively entrusted to men.”
An established chef, at home and abroad
After years of study, hard work and sacrifices, Patrizia Di Benedetto began to make a name for herself abroad, when in 1997 she worked as a trainee in the Valentini restaurant in Los Angeles. She would later continue her association with the USA, cooking on several occasions in Chicago, New York, Baltimore, Boston, New Haven and Long Island. In 2006, she was the only representative from Italy at the Four Seasons International Cooking Festival in Bangkok, and in recent years she has taken her Sicilian heart and soul to Japan a number of times to cook there.
Beyond the stereotypes
A passion that lead to her gaining her first important recognition in 1997, when she won L’Espresso Restaurant Guide’s prize for the best pâtisserie in the Italian restaurant sector.
“For this reason, desserts are held in high regard here. Like all our dishes, our desserts, biscuits and ice cream are prepared in our own kitchens. It was my ricotta semifreddo with bitter orange marmalade that earned me this award. Among the various desserts inspired by our traditions, I’m always inclined to mention our jasmine curd with watermelon jelly and cinnamon meringue. A dish filled with memories.”
In my own way
in the kitchen
“I tried and tried again, thousands of times. I asked the ingredients for their help. There was a strong bond between me and the produce of my land and my sea. I spoke with the aromatic herbs and spices ….. and they taught me how to get the measurements just right.”
“My cooking originates from the intense flavours and aromas of Sicily, exalted by modern culinary techniques. My “filled with memories” dishes become protagonists of the changes we are witnessing in our habits and in the way we eat. A surprising pairing, an unexpected ingredient, an unusual preparation. But the memory lingers of a dish cooked with love, food that is good for the soul.
Gourmet but healthy
Zero kilometre sourcing
“Eating well and healthily is fundamental today, as we travel more, work hard and have less and less time to sit down at the table. Listening to the needs of visitors to the restaurant, I sense a growing desire in them to become more mindful of health and nutritional values, without renouncing taste.”
Due to the particular attention we pay to our ingredients, we’ve grown to know the places they come from very well, and we‘ve built a relationship based on trust and friendship with the people who produce them. Hence our focus on organic products and the superb offerings of our seas, such as the famous red crayfish of Mazara del Vallo.
Antonio, owner of Bye Bye Blues, is on hand in the dining room to meet and listen carefully to the restaurant’s guests. An expert sommelier, he can advise you on the best choice of wine for your meal. An authority and professional, he looks after our very extensive wine and spirits lists, which change constantly. “Never stop” and “never take anything for granted” are the secrets to Antonio’s success. Since the restaurant opened in 1991, he has broadened his knowledge with high-level work experiences that are worthy of a mention here: after going to the Garten Bar in Salò on Lake Garda to learn from Edoardo Giaccone, one of the greatest Italian collectors and selectors of spirits ever, he flew off immediately afterwards to Santa Monica to his lifelong friend Piero Selvaggio’s 100% Italian restaurant, Valentino. That international touch doesn’t mist his love for his territory, but rather wraps it in that allure and glamour that in Italy we simply call ‘class’.
Yukihiko Matsuguma, sous-chef
Yukihiko Matsuguma has been Patrizia di Benedetto’s sous-chef since 2003. He actively collaborates with her to create a cuisine that lives up to the expectations of travellers, who still feel an impelling need for certainties and memories, however. Therefore every day at this table in Sicily the comfort food offered by reassuring traditional dishes takes on the no fusion Japanese style, in a duel on equal terms. These days an irreplaceable member of forward-thinking Di Benedetto’s team, Matsuguma has embraced the utmost care and attention to detail that goes into and onto every dish.
Restaurant Manager and sommelier
Claudio’s CV is outstanding. Every day he lavishes his expertise gained in Italy and abroad on Bye Bye Blues’ guests, with chivalry and savoir faire. He has worked at “La Pergola”, Rome; “Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni”, Lake Como; “Hotel Suvretta House”, St. Moritz; “Four Seasons Hotel George V”, Paris; “La Côte d’Or”, Saulieu and “Le Luis XV”, Montecarlo, to name just a few. He always aims for the highest standards, group synergy and teamwork at the forefront.