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The Italian Final of the Panettone World Cup was held in Milan. We were also on the press jury with celebreMagazine. Seven pastry chefs have qualified in Milan and will participate in the international final to be held in Lugano next November.

Milan is the undisputed capital of Panettone, the great leavened cake that started from here to conquer over the centuries pastry chefs worldwide. On 20 February, the Italian finals of the Panettone World Cup were held in Milan, in the historic Palazzo Bovara, home of the Circolo del Commercio di Confcommercio Milano. The great international event aims to compare the best artisan productions of the leavened cake par excellence.

The 32 pastry chefs selected during the three selection events South, North and Centre, organised respectively in Reggio Calabria, Robecco Sul Naviglio and Pistoia, challenged each other. In the end, thanks to the judgement of a technical jury, made up of great names in pastry making and international cuisine, and a press jury, the panettone cakes and their respective pastry chefs who deserve the final test, at the world level, were identified.

Specifically, the technical jury was composed of: Iginio Massari (Jury President) Master and founder AMPI; Angelo Musa, MOF Pâtissier; Debora Massari, Master AMPI and food technologist; Diego Rossi, Chef of Trippa Milano; Davide Malizia, Pastry Chef, World Champion Artistic Sugar; Gian Battista Montanari, Maestro AMPI and consultant; Roberto Rinaldini, Maestro AMPI and member Relais Dessert; Jose Romero, Pastry Chef, teacher and trainer; Luca Poncini, Pastry Chef; Fabrizio Galla, Maestro AMPI and member Relais Dessert, qualify for the international competition: Salvatore Tortora, Marigliano – Naples Valerio Santi, Pizzighettone – Cremona Massimiliano Lunardi, Quarrata – Pistoia Fiorenzo Ascolese, San Valentino Torio – Salerno Gianfranco Nicolini, Porto Recanati – Macerata Damiano Pagani, Dello – Brescia.

These names were joined by a seventh element: Antonio Losito, Nibionno – Lecco, nominated by the press jury, composed of Nadia Toppino and Roberta Schira; Rossella Contato; Alessandra Favaro; Federica Artina; Ezio Zigliani, journalist and food communicator; Claudio Burdi; Barbara Giglioli. Presenting the panettone cakes to the jurors were the youngsters from the Maestro Martino Association of Villa Terzaghi, the cookery school and didactic restaurant that has already played a leading role in the Northern Selections of this competition.

Giuseppe Piffaretti followed the entire event in Milan in detail, from the opening to the final award ceremony: “The Finale Italia is the top event for the competition. I would like to thank all the participants, the technical jury, the press jury and the technical committee for their valuable work. Special thanks go to our sponsors, Agrimontana and Molino Dallagiovanna, who support us and make this event possible, and to all the partners who are present”.

The Region of Lombardy’s collaboration with Confcommercio and the Maestro Martino association is increasingly close and effective, with the single objective of promoting this region’s excellent products. It represents a historical and cultural wealth and an important economic engine capable of enhancing the value of entire territories on a global level. It is also because of this link that Fabio Rolfi, Lombardy’s Regional Councillor for Agriculture, Food and Green Systems, was present at the Milan event, a spokesman in this case for a region that opens up to the world thanks to one of its symbolic products and an initiative with an international scope: “Panettone manages to keep intact a centuries-old tradition and at the same time represent one of the certainties for the future of Italy. Therefore, it is right and proper to thank the organisers and all those who helped to make this event possible, even in such a complicated period.

The appointment is in Lugano next November to decide the best Panettone, this time worldwide and absolutely outside the Christmas context!

Article edit by Nadia Toppino

Food, Wine & Hospitality Consultant

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