Photo: Medici Kitchen and Bar / Facebook
Photo: Medici Kitchen and Bar / Facebook

BANGKOK — The Thai-Italian Chamber of Commerce announced Tuesday night 52 restaurants out of approximately 1,000 nationwide that have passed strict authenticity criteria.

The third, 2020 edition of the “Guidebook to Italian Cuisine,” unveiled Tuesday, lists 52 restaurants in Thailand that have passed rigorous testing by Italy’s tourism branch, such as using 100 percent Italian olive oil and recipe authenticity.

“It’s a pleasure to get this award, and I’m very proud to be able to give this food to Thai people,” Manuelo Pintore, chef at Peppina said at the Tuesday night awards ceremony.

Pintore said he was especially proud of Peppina’s Neapolitan pizza: “we follow all the steps, the rules and regulations to make certified, authentic Neapolitan pizza,” he said.

Of the 1,000-or so self-proclaiming Italian restaurants in Thailand, the list of 52 is approximately amounts a success rate of 5 percent.

Although the second edition was only announced in February, the Ospitalia Italiana project, which certifies authentic Italian restaurants worldwide based on metrics set by Italy’s National Institute of Research on Tourism, announced the 2020 lists earlier than expected.

The guide tests for authenticity rather than taste: requirements include a good restaurant layout, grammatically correct Italian menu names, use of Italian extra virgin olive oil, a lack of “fusion food” such as tom yum kung or durian pizza, and so on.

Some restaurants dropped off of the list, such as Terraza Italian Restaurant at Pathumwan Princess Hotel, and Pasta Pasta at Jomtien Beach in Pattaya.

The 2020 edition also included their first listing of a non-Pattaya restaurant in Chonburi: Luna Bianca Diciotto, as well as three new Phuket restaurants, and a new award each for Chiang Mai, Pattaya, Hua Hin, and Koh Samui.

Here’s the full list, with new additions in bold.

Bangkok

Antonio’s the Italian Experience, Appia, Attico, Calderazzo on 31, Ciao Pizza Ristorante, Da Vinci, Enoteca, Favola, Galleria Milano, Gianni Ristorante, Il Bolognese, IO Italian Osteria, La Bottega di Luca, La Buca, La Scala, La Scarpetta, La Tana, La Tavola & Wine Bar, Lenzi Tuscan Kitchen, Medici Kitchen & Bar, Mio Food Art, Nonna Nella, Opus Wine Bar, Peppina, Porto Bello, Prosecco, Rossano’s, Sensi, Theo Mio, and Zanotti Il Ristorante.

Chiang Mai

Dan Antonio, Piccola Roma Palace

Chonburi

Luna Bianca Diciotto

Pattaya

Italian Osteria

Phuket

Acqua, Bocconcino, Da Maurizio Beach Side, Kudo, La Carbonara, La Gaetana, La Scala, L’Opera Ristorante Italiano, Portofino, Rossovivo, Vero Italian Trattoria

Hua Hin

Andreas, Da Mario, La Grappa

Koh Phangan

Fabio’s, Valentino Restaurant & Wine Bar

Koh Samui

Gusto, Pepe Nero

The third edition won’t be out until early 2020, but the 2019 one is still on sale for 380 baht at Kinokuniya, OpenHouse, some branches of Tops Supermarket, and Asia Books. The book also features helpful guides to enjoying Italian cuisine, wine and recipes for each restaurant’s signature dish.

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