Valentino: At the Emperor’s Table
1. The simplest of foods are not only the best but healthiest. Is that the reason you frame your simple divine recipes with exquisite and lavish table settings?
Today is possible to have great looking food and very good one with the healthiest ingredients. We don’t have to use sugar and butter to make great desserts. We can have amazing pasta with kamut or rice pasta. I would not live without pasta myself.
2. What do your table setting and haute couture have in common?
I don’t know in other designer’s case. I believe that you can put a lot of quality and care in your recipes as you can do in a beautiful dress. But cooking is so much more fun and easier than couture!
3. What is the secret to collecting for table setting?
I love nice china and tablecloths. Some are antiques and some are simple modern chic plates. Imagination is needed more than money sometimes.
4. How many houses do you have and are the table settings that you collect for each different from each other?
Few houses and if I like one set of china I can have the same everywhere but I tend to keep the more antique china where there are more important dinners like in New York or Paris. Of course in the mountain or on my yacht table setting is much more relaxed and modern.
5. What is the secret to being a great host as you’re legendarily known?
I don’t know if I am really a great host. There are so many great people who know how to entertain with style but also with a sense of relaxed elegance. I don’t like dinners to be too formal.
6. How does one hone their sense of style,taste and entertaining? Can it be learned?
I was a very young assistant designer in Paris in my twenties and I started to see and learn. In these great French houses you never stop learning and refining your style.
7. What do the emperor’s dogs eat from?
Ceramic bowls like any dog. And healthy food too, of course.