Stefano Martinelli

Sous Chef and Chef Patissier

Finding Perfection in Calmness

When one thinks of the world’s Michelin-starred kitchens, terms like calmness and serenity are seldom mentioned. However, these are exactly what Stefano Martinelli contemplates as he heads to his workplace at GOLVET. Cooking is where he finds his peace. For him, the kitchen is a place where everything is in order, and he prepares the highest culinary delights step by step in a harmonious sequence with his team. The young Italian is at peace with himself, something you can sense from the first moment.

The fact that Stefano found his way into the kitchen is actually pure coincidence. In Italy, he attended a high school for five years, which included regular internships. Originally, he was rooted in service. “At the bar, you always have an open ear, you develop relationships with guests. I loved being in constant contact with different people. The social component makes service a great workplace,” Stefano recalls today. In his fourth year, however, his teacher sends him to a hotel that is not looking for a waiter but needs support in the kitchen. A mistake that turns out to be an absolute stroke of luck. “As a chef, I make people even happier. Good food makes you happy!” says Stefano. He worked as a chef in Italy for nine years, where he made it to sous chef. His workplace is the Palagina, a historic hotel not far from Florence. However, since the hotel is only open in the summer season, he comes to Berlin for the winter season in 2015 – and stays.

The Chemistry of Patisserie

Stefano Martinelli

He works for two years at The Mandala Hotel, where he meets Jonas. The Mandala is also the creative space of Thomas Yoshida, the renowned 2-star patissier, who sets new standards in the world of desserts and fine dining with his fabulous creations. Stefano’s fire is ignited; he desperately wants to learn from the great master. So, on his days off, he goes to him, helping as an intern for almost two years. Patisserie is chemistry for Stefano. It’s about the perfect combination of textures and flavors, the right temperature and firmness, in short: the perfect state in which different flavor essences come together and merge into unforgettable taste experiences. In patisserie, for Stefano, everything is exactly where it should be. It is precision in perfection. Different flavors are perfectly matched to create a well-rounded taste experience. “Everything must be well-rounded. The perfect dessert should hit all the taste buds and leave a pleasant feeling in the mouth,” explains Stefano.

When Jonas becomes Executive Chef at GOLVET, he is looking for a patissier. For Stefano, it’s the long-awaited opportunity! He starts as a Demi Chef de Partie, soon becomes Chef de Partie, Junior Sous Chef, and finally in June 2022, Jonas’ deputy in the kitchen and thus Sous Chef. The two are an inseparable team, both in the kitchen and outside.

Sommer Stefano and Jonas

“Stefano is characterized by an incredible thirst for knowledge. He always strives for new ideas and approaches. He is practically my second head and now like a brother to me. We drive to work together in the morning and back home together in the evening, as we live just two cross streets apart,” reports Jonas. Competitive thinking? None at all.

In the kitchen, Stefano has free rein when it comes to desserts. As with the rest of the menu, ingredients and seasonality determine the choice. The patissier also likes to use self-pickled products such as sakura flowers or mimosa blossoms to give his dishes a special touch. He tends towards light desserts and new interpretations of classics like Kaiserschmarrn as ice cream or baked in a small form. His favorite dessert? “Tiramisu!” The Italian doesn’t have to think long. “It combines different flavors wonderfully. The bitter note of coffee meets the incredible creaminess of mascarpone.” Another example of the delightful chemistry of patisserie