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1 Viale Piave, Milan, Italy
THE POPULARITY OF MOLECULAR MIXING has seen many pretenders jump on a bonkers beverage bandwagon. Granted this has occasionally been to its detriment with a minority of ham-fisted lunatics making headlines as they underestimate the dangers and harm customers – and, indeed, the craft. But there remains a select global guard of masters of the art, and Nottingham Forest owner Dario Comino is one such.
Comino presents himself as a ‘bar chef’, and has taken culinary knowhow to the glass in such spectacular fashion that his establishment is rightly regarded as a global imbibing institution. He has approached his drinks recipe with reverence and respect for heritage, but injected techniques that bring new intrigue into Milan’s mixed drinks. His Aperitivo Spritz is often held up as an example, with Comino’s take on spheriphying the drink earning him plaudits.
Meanwhile, his enthusiasm for his trade is one of the many reasons he deserves his acclaim as he works hard to educate and celebrate his craft.
What global bar trekkers discover at the bar might seem a little incongruous – the décor is in stark contrast to the cocktail concepts with dark woods and hanging nautical knick-knacks providing a Polynesian vibe. But it’s a glorious juxtaposition for the uninitiated, and as lab-style glassware makes its way out on trays there can be no disguising the fact that, on the other side of the bar, Comino and his team’s curiosity for flavour and aroma influence everything on the menu. To be in the bar is to be a lab rat, but it’s not like Comino is spraying perfume in your eyes or trying to grow an ear off your back, so to sit and drink here is an experiment everyone needs to embrace.