Dina is a restaurant in Gussago – in the province of Brescia, in Franciacorta – offering desserts (and “non-desserts”) with interesting names like “Come una volta”, “Ma che cavolo!” and “C’è qualcosa che non quaglia” (which literally mean “Like in the olden days”, “What the heck!” and “Something’s off” – though so many plays on words are lost in translation). It even has cryptic menus titled “Cuoco Buono” (“Good Cook”) and “Cuoco Post Fuoco” (“Post-fire Cook”), and one dish known as “Agnello nella bocca del lupo” (“Lamb in the Wolf’s Mouth” – “in bocca al lupo” being an expression similar to “break a leg”).
All of these verbal acrobatics are a quiet invitation to either embrace the unexpected or ask for explanations. When he opened the restaurant a couple of years ago, owner Alberto Gipponi committed to tuning in to his clients’ wishes – encouraging patrons to be light and free in their choices. Indeed, while “Dina” was Gipponi’s grandmother, we could say “light” and “free” are the real keywords of the philosophy the brings to the table (pun intended!).
Born in Brescia in 1980, Gipponi began his career far from the kitchen: after graduating in Sociology, he was an assistant professor at university and dedicated time to both music and charity work. However, cooking was always a great passion of his (an “obsession”, he claims), which he pursued with determination even when life seemed to lead him elsewhere.
After working for starred chef Massimo Bottura for some time, honing his skills, he was able to open “Dina” and it was – as he states in the restaurant’s website – a dream come true.