by Lucas Raven
Born and raised in San Cesario di Lecce, a small town near Lecce city in the Apulia region, the South of Italy, Chef Davide Calo brings a wealth of experience to his new role as head chef at Ms.Jigger, an Italian restaurant and social magnet at Kimpton Maa-Lai Bangkok. His passion for food and cooking started when he was young, peeking over the kitchen counter as his grandmother prepped and prepared for the family.
What inspires you every day?
Everything come to my life daily inspires me to create new dishes. I can find inspiration from everywhere. Walking on the street market around Bangkok, spotting new ingredients or produce, talking to my family or friends in Italy.
What are the signature dishes that you created for Ms.Jigger?
-Caprese salad with black buffalo mozzarella, cherry tomatoes, basil and balsamic reduction
-Tortelli with foie gras, strawberry reduction and parmesan air
– Risotto with pecorino cheese and black pepper, red prawn tartare, capers powder
-Baked Toothfish, topinambur velouté, crispy fennel and sugar snap peas.
Where did you begin your Culinary journey?
I started my culinary journey in my hometown in south Italy, San Cesario di Lecce (Apulia region). My passion for food and cooking started since I was young, peeking over the kitchen counter as my grandmother prepped and prepared for the family.
If your menu was a story book, what kind of story would it be telling?
A classic tale story with an unexpected ending (mean traditional Italian dishes in a modern twist)
What’s your personal favorite dish on the menu?
‘’Homemade tagliolini pasta with seabass, black olives, capers, cherry tomato slightly spicy’’ because it reminds me of my home
Has cooking always been your passion?
Since I was a little kid, climbing the chair to look while my grandmothers were cooking in the kitchen, trying to catch all of their culinary secrets.
Please share your top tips for aspiring chefs out there
I believe that being a Chef is not an easy job, lots of sacrifices and pains. But if you have the passion for this job, nothing can stop you. Therefore do what you love to do and, most importantly, always do what makes you happy.
What do you love most about Ms. Jigger?
Everything… Ms.Jigger is my second home! Working with passionate and hardworking team – not only chefs but also service team as well as bartenders. I love how we blend between restaurant and bar here, I believe with Narrative cocktails and beverage programming in Ms.Jigger elevate the whole guest’s culinary experience to the next level.
Describe Bangkok in one word:
*A personal note from the editor: Must try Ms.Jigger’s signature narrative cocktails. You can thank me later.