A cooking class that was created and owned by a world-renowned chef is how the students of Doing Business in Italy spent their Friday morning class field trip. My classmates and I visited Fabio Bongianni’s Fabiolous Cooking Day located in the city of Rome. The focus of the field trip was to learn more about a specific small to medium sized enterprise; a topic that was discussed extensively in class.
In the beginning of the class the marketing manager discussed the inspiration behind the creation of the company. She explained Bongianni, the chef and creator of the cooking school, is most known for his restaurant, That’s Amore, located in Rome. With his prior experience of a very successful Italian restaurant, that competes in a very competitive market, Bongianni wanted to create Fabiolous Cooking Day; a cooking class for people interested in learning how to make authentic Italian cuisine. She stressed the success of Bongianni’s company was attributed to his ability to conform to changing consumer demands. Fabiolous Cooking Day truly listens to the market and adapts the services in response. “Meeting customer demand is the key to our success” explained Sara Portioli, Marketing Manager and this topic was illustrated to the students in class prior to visiting the school.
We were able to experience one of Bongianni’s pasta cooking class; making several different types of pastas. We started with making the dough by mixing the flour water and eggs. The chef and his assistants helped us make the perfect pasta dough. We then shaped the dough into three different styles of pasta: fettucine, cavatelli, and ravioli. I learned that precision is key when making the pastas. Too much flour could make your dough too dry which therefore, could not roll into the shape you wanted to. Once we made the pastas we left it up to the chefs to cook and finish the pastas with the three different sauces. The sauces were very traditional Italian sauces: a meat sauce, marinara, and a cream sauce. The day finished with the savoring of our pastas while we enjoyed the delicious Italian cuisine.

Business students learn about the business of pasta

It was very interesting to be able to see the topics that we discussed in class come alive through this cooking class. In particular, given the importance of the tourist industry in the Italian economy, it was interesting to see how the company has been able not only to offer the service locally, but also to “export” it in an innovative and creative manner. A truly wonderful experience.

By: Niki Marino, Student, "Doing Business in Italy”, Fall 2017