Chef Umberto Bombana is a native of Bergamo in Northern Italy; he was trained at Centro di Formazione Alberghiera, apprenticing under the talented Ezio Santin at Antica Osteria del Ponte, now a Michelin-starred restaurant outside Milan. 1983, he joined the famous Rex Il Ristorante in Los Angeles, where he was lauded for his simple yet refined regional cooking. Adding to his foundation were stints in the kitchen with other top chefs such as Gianfranco Vissani, Michel Rostang and Pinuccio Alia.
In January 2010, chef Bombana returned with his most distinctive and personal project ever, namely 8 ½ Otto e Mezzo Bombana, and was his most fanciful masterpiece yet. Like Fellini’s movie, it is destined to be an unforgettable experience for anyone lucky enough to embark on the maestro’s artistic journey with him. After only a few months, the restaurant has been awarded two Michelin stars, with the third arriving in December 2011. 8 ½ Otto e Mezzo Bombana became the first Italian restaurant outside Italy to receive this recognition until today.
Bombana loves Italy and he often uses his contemporary culinary creations and his inventive recipes—which are a real love story among ingredients—to talk about his country. He does not limit his choice to only Italian products, as he loves searching and sourcing products from all over the world.