Born and raised in Querétaro north of Mexico City, Karime López‘s arrival at the helm of Gucci Osteria Florence is the latest stage in a dynamic and meaningful culinary voyage. Hers is a truly personal journey that began when a young Karime discovered the playful language of food as she closely observed her mother cook the family meals as a child. From there, her passion for food flourished and led her to work in some of the most prestigious kitchens all over the world, from Spain to Mexico, Peru, and Japan, before finally landing at Gucci Osteria Florence in 2018.
Karime López met Taka Kondo in 2014 during a culinary performance in New York. In the following years, they grew closer and married in August 2016. Today, as Co-Executive Chefs of Gucci Osteria Florence, their story has manifested in a unique, culinary interpretation of modern Italian cuisine that they have named ‘Nuove Memorie’ (New Memories). It encapsulates seasonal dishes that can be likened to a “capsule collection,” a true vision of imagination, magic, color, and enchantment, nourished by their intertwining cultures, personal memories as a couple, and life-changing travels. Notable dishes from the new menu include Viaggio in Messico, which relives a special Mexican ‘mole’ tasted on one of their trips to Puebla; Schiacciata con l’Uva, which offers a truly visionary, outsider interpretation of the typical Florentine cake; Cannolo che Voleva Diventare un Cannellone, recalls Taka’s early days in Italian kitchens and his confusion between ‘cannolo’ and the ‘cannellone’ as well as the Midday & Midnight Spaghetti, that creates a path between Peru and Italy, marrying ceviche from Mexico and Peru that is eaten only during the day and the classic Italian spaghetti eaten at midnight. Their unique perspective allows them to approach the sometimes-cumbersome traditions pertaining to Italian cuisine with a certain lightness; one of appreciation and respectfulness whilst non-linear and innovative.