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Rencontres sur la Riviera / Encounters - Riviera Magazine

Rencontres sur la Riviera / Encounters

Mamo
L’AMI DES STARS

Pépino Mammoliti, dit « Mamo », tout en galéjades et sensibilité, a créé en vingt-six ans un restaurant aussi célèbre que ses illus- tres invités. Sa trattoria chaleureuse, le « Michelangelo », ancienne cave des Domaines Ott, Mamo, l’autodidacte parti de zéro, l’a conçue à l’image des souvenirs de son Italie d’origine où les odeurs de plats mijotés de
« sa grand-mère » se mélangent aux moments de convivialité. Très rapidement, l’Hôtel du Cap-Eden Roc lui envoie ses clients stars qui préfèrent rester sur place plutôt que de filer à Monaco. Sa première table est un rêve : Bill Cosby, John Collins, Kirk Douglas et Roger Moore. Mamo est un peu stressé, mais sa cuisine authentique séduit dès la première bouchée. Depuis, son restaurant est devenu un véritable défilé de célébrités qui se sentent ici « comme à la maison ». Magic Johnson y a organisé son 25e anniversaire de mariage, Jay Z et Beyoncé se régalent de pizzas à la truffe, Mamo s’est même rendu chez eux à New-York y cuisiner sa spécialité de « raviolini à la truffe » en présence de Madonna et Rihanna. Il est devenu ami avec Jean-Paul Belmondo, à qui il sert un gâteau d’anniversaire à chacune de ses visites « juste pour rigoler », ou avec Georges Clooney, Robert de Niro et Johnny Hallyday, avec lesquels il peut partager une cagette de fruits après une délicieuse épaule d’agneau grillée au feu de bois ou un savoureux « vitello tonatto ». Son fils Mike est aujourd’hui a la tête du « Mamo » new-yorkais qui connaît un grand succès et de la version parisienne ouverte depuis un an. Avec tout ça, pas question de perdre la tête, il le dit lui-même : « Les étoiles sont dans le ciel, les macarons chez Ladurée, les fourchettes sur les tables ».

THE STARS’ FRIEND

Over the last 26 years, the compassionate and bubbly Pépino Mammoliti, nicknamed “Mamo”, has created a restaurant that is as famous as his illustrious clients. Starting from scratch and entirely self-taught, Mamo opened his friendly trattoria, the “Michelangelo”, in a former Domaines Ott wine cellar, designing it as he remembered his native land of Italy where the aromas of his grandmother’s slowly cooked dishes combined with convivial moments. Shortly after opening, the Hotel du Cap-Eden Roc sent him its star-guests who preferred to stay in the area rather than going to Monaco. His first table was memorable: Bill Cosby, John Collins, Kirk Douglas and Roger Moore. Mamo was a bit stressed but his authen- tic cuisine was loved as of the first mouthful. Since then, his restaurant has become a favourite haunt for the famous who feel “at home” here. Magic Johnson even organised his 25th wedding anniversary here, Jay Z and Beyoncé adore his truffle pizzas. Mamo has even been to theirs in New-York to cook his speciality “raviolini à la truffe” in the presence of Madonna and Rihanna. He has become friends with Jean-Paul Belmondo to whom he serves a birthday cake on each of his visits, just “for a laugh”, as well as with Georges Clooney, Robert de Niro and Johnny Hallyday, with whom he shares a crate of fresh fruit after a delicious shoulder of lamb cooked over a wood fire or a flavoursome vitello tonatto. Today, his son Mike is at the helm of the New York “Mamo” which is also a huge success, and of the Parisian version, opened one year ago. But none of this has made him lose sight of reality… as he says himself: “the stars are in the sky, the macarons at Ladurée, and the forks are on the tables”.

Par Dorothée Marro

www.michelangelo-mamo.com


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