Through HMSHost International, Autogrill makes its entry to China with Bistrot, the concept developed in collaboration with the University of Gastronomic Sciences (Unisg) in Pollenzo.
Bistrot Century Ave, in the Pudong business district offers genuine Italian dishes including handmade pizzas and pastas, freshly baked breads, locally grown vegetables and carefully selected traditional products. In a market like China – increasingly interested in the world of food – “eating Italian” and “drinking Italian” have become status symbols, especially in the biggest metropolises such as Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai.
And it is in big metropolises in fact where Italian cuisine – which has always been appreciated and imitated – adapts to typically oriental tastes to bring about ‘fusion’. This is why is Bistrot is offering local food with recipes including local ingredients and adapting the food experience for its new Shanghai customers. The menu features many traditional Italian recipes (such as pizza) revisited to suit Chinese culinary customs (horizontal meals with soft, digestible foods and a strong focus on food safety), while service too has been restyled, with table service only, for example.
As in all Bistrot locations (more than 20 in airports, motorway service areas and high streets worldwide), HMSHost International will be working with local suppliers that share Bistrot’s passion for healthy, sustainable and fair trade food. One of these suppliers is “The Rainbow of Hope”, a platform that supports local farmers and fosters ecologically sustainable farming practices that don’t use chemicals. With these and other locally sourced products HMSHost International intends to support local communities whilst maintaining the authenticity of Italian cuisine and also putting down strong roots in China.
To continue exporting prestige Italian know-how worldwide, the entire training programme for the exclusively Chinese store staff took place in Italy, partly in Autogrill’s ‘Spazio Fucina’ (the Group’s Research & Development unit at the Rozzano HQ) and partly at its ‘Mercato del Duomo’ Bistrot in Milan.