Dining

Inside Capri's hottest new restaurant

The best place on the Italian island to enjoy sunset

SCROLL
|

Related posts

After setting foot on the isle of Capri for the first time this year, Italian-born Chef Marco Cannata has instantly succumbed to the island’s magnetic charm.

As Regional Executive Chef-Italy at world-renowned Japanese izakaya-style restaurant Zuma, Chef Marco is well acquainted with some of the world’s best eateries, having worked at the likes of Zuma Miami and Oblix at the Shard, Zuma’s sister restaurant. His team recently launched Zuma Capri at Capri Palace Jumeirah–joining and enhancing the hotel’s already rich culinary line-up, including Capri’s only two-Michelin starred restaurant L’Olivo, and the mesmerising Il Riccio beach club–helping this charming location to become the island’s most unforgettable and varied fine dining destination.

Below, Chef Marco tells us why Zuma Capri has surpassed everything he had imagined, his favourite dishes at Capri’s hottest new restaurant and the best table to book for special occasions.

Chef at Zuma Capri at Capri Palace Jumeirah in Italy

 

When was the first time you visited Capri and what made you fall in love with the island?

It was actually Zuma that brought me to Capri for the first time. I went to Capri earlier this year in January to see the restaurant location. We came to Capri Palace Jumeirah’s rooftop - the restaurant wasn’t there yet, it was simply a huge terrace. It was winter, so I knew it would feel different in summer, but the view already said everything. It didn’t matter that there was nothing there. It was simply a breathtaking view.

 

Zuma is a globally renowned Japanese izakaya restaurant brand. What do you think is interesting about bringing Japanese cuisine to Capri?

Zuma is one of a handful of non-Italian restaurants in Capri - there aren’t many. That’s what struck me during my first visit. We knew that many of our customers were already travelling to Capri and we always try to bring Zuma to the places our customers love visiting. So we’ve brought the concept of Zuma to Capri and it really is something new and unique for Capri.

 

Have you created any unique dishes specifically for Zuma Capri?

When you come to Capri for the first time, you see lemons everywhere. Everywhere, literally - in all the restaurants. We always try to source local ingredients and prepare them in a Zuma way so we’ve created two special dishes using locally sourced Capri lemons. The first is a sliced lobster carpaccio with lemon gel and oscietra caviar. Second is a lemon mochi - mochi is a traditional Japanese dessert and we’ve made it with the local lemons. This is also the first time we’ve tried to present the dishes in a different way - both dishes are served on ice with a lemon display to feel more attached to the island.

The outdoor terrace at Zuma Capri at Capri Palace Jumeirah in Italy

What is your favourite dish on the menu and why?

My favourite dish is the Chilean sea bass - it’s one of Zuma’s signature dishes. It’s been on the menu for a long time and remains one of our best sellers. I can’t really explain why I love it but I’ve had many Chilean sea bass dishes in all my time at Zuma and every time I’m happy to have another. I can never have enough–it happens sometimes with other dishes–but the Chilean sea bass with the green chilli and ginger dressing is just perfect.

Which ingredients or techniques are essential for making classic Japanese izakaya dishes?

Ingredients - the list is huge. We focus on sourcing the best quality possible and let the produce speak for themselves. Zuma is inspired by traditional Japanese Izakaya's which serve a mix of different types of dishes under one roof. At Zuma we serve dishes from three kitchens; sushi, the robata grill which is a charcoal grill and the main kitchen.

Many guests enjoy eating locally sourced ingredients, is this important for you too?

Most of our fresh produce is sourced locally and if they’re not from the island they’re sourced from the Amalfi Coast, the Gulf of Naples and the surrounding area. Our meat is supplied from Naples and we source the lemons and our vegetables from the island. You can’t get much closer to the island than this. We still need to use our traditional Japanese ingredients, of course, but we always try to combine them with what the island has to offer.

What have been some of the most rewarding experiences in launching the new restaurant?

As an Italian I’m very proud to have three locations in Italy, Capri is our third location here. Obviously I’m super proud of this. When I used to work in Zuma Miami back in 2014 and I never thought Italian people would understand Zuma’s cuisine, I didn’t think it would work in Italy. And now finding myself in Capri opening our third location, I think about how things change.

Teamwork is also very important for me. For me personally, this is my second opening–I opened in Porto Cervo last year and Capri this year. We put a lot of work into building our team–sourcing the head chef, the sous chef and building on everyone’s strengths to bring the Zuma standard to Capri. When you open a new restaurant there is always stress, you wonder how you’re going to open in time - but everyone puts in a little piece that comes together and this for sure is really rewarding for me to see.

New chef at Japanese sushi restaurant Zuma in Capri in Italy

How does Zuma Capri stand out from other restaurants in the area?

There is nothing quite like it in Capri - the food of course, but also the setting in general, the view and the location. It really is very special.

 

Do you have a favourite table that you would recommend booking in advance for special occasions?

The big round table on the corner, table 30, this table is perfectly located on the corner of the terrace and you have the view of Ischia and Rashida and you see the Gulf of Naples with Vesuvius on the horizon – it’s elevated from the rest of the floor so for me, it’s the perfect table.

Sunset at Zuma Capri at Capri Palace Jumeirah in Italy

 

Book your place at table 30 with our concierge team at Capri Palace Jumeirah on +39 081 978 0111 or info@capripalace.com, or contact Zuma Capri on +39 081 1892 5454 or infocapri@zumarestaurant.co.it.