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interview • March 28th, 2022

Interview with Stefano Di Gennaro


Stefano Di Gennaro is owner-chef at restaurant Quintessenza. After his culinary education at Hotellerie Institute of Molfetta in 2004, Stefano worked in various kitchens across Italy. In 2011 his dream came true when he opened the doors of Quintessenza restaurant. At Quintessenza he draws gourmets from near and far with his creative Italian cuisine and delicious seafood dishes. It’s no wonder his culinary creations were awarded a coveted Michelin star. We asked the chef some questions about his culinary inspiration, his favourite ingredient, and a whole lot more.

Stefano, how would you describe your cooking style?

A cooking style that has respect for the region but develops without squeezing itself within limits and definitions. A refined but intelligible cuisine, which strikes the eye and the throat for simplicity, and knows how to take some liberty between new flavours and exciting combinations, without being bizarre.

What's your favourite dish to make?

I love making lamb torcinelli (stuffed lamb intestines), and Gallipoli red prawns. These dishes are always present on the menu as they embrace my beloved Puglia. From the north, we have the torcinelli made with lamb, and from the La Gallipoli area in the south, the delicious red shrimps.

What is your favourite ingredient to work with?

My favourite ingredient is extra-virgin olive oil. The olive oil evokes a special state of soul and brings back important memories of my training as a chef.

I enjoy working with, many local artisans

Stefano Di Gennaro


Who is one of your top suppliers or producers?

There are different suppliers I enjoy working with, many local artisans. We love producers who they get their hands dirty every day, between commitment, passion and dedication. I strongly believe in the concept of collaboration and synergy.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced in your culinary career?

The challenges are daily my colleagues would say, and they have a good reason. However, to this day, nothing striking has challenged me.

Which gastronomic trend are you excited about the most?

I am a big fan of the green and sustainable trend. Enhancing the elements that the earth gives us fascinates me. I strongly believe in this trend, looking at my little children supports this.

If you could only eat one dish for the rest of your life, what would that be?

My mom's baked pasta, I leave it to you to guess why.

What’s one thing in the area that your guests absolutely need to see or do?

I would recommend guests to visit the majestic Cathedral of Trani, one of the few places where you can overlook the sea. Then continue with the whole port and historical area, it’s a beautiful place.

Thank you, Stefano.

Book your table at restaurant Quintessenza

Try chef Stefano Di Gennaro’s creative Italian cuisine for yourself at restaurant Quintessenza in Trani, Italy. You can make your lunch or dinner reservation through our website, for an unforgettable gastronomic experience.

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