Beyond a simple restaurant. Franco Nuschese, founder and owner of Cafe Milano in Washington, received the “Ambrogino d’oro” award from the mayor of Milan Giuseppe Sala today. For more than thirty years, Nuschese, originally from the South of Italy, has worked in his cafe in Georgetown, one of the most iconic neighbourhoods of Washington. The cafe has never been a simple Italian restaurant. It quickly became a restaurant for kings, queens, heads of state, diplomats, politicians, journalists and lobbyists, united by their passion for Italian cuisine.
- The Ambrogino d’Oro is the highest honour awarded as a sign of gratitude by the City of Milan to those who “have made a special contribution to the city”, as the official page of the City of Milan states.
- Each year, 70 awardees are chosen by the Bureau of the Milan City Council although the mayor has the right of veto. The award ceremony takes place on 7 December on the feast of St Ambrose, the city’s patron saint.
- Cafe Milano carries “Milan” not only in its name but also in its mood. The Cafe reflects Nuschese’s experience in Milan in the 1980s and his aspiration to combine fashion and food.
A cafe for the political elite. All American presidents since Bill Clinton, except Donald Trump, have been his guests. The New York Times called it the White House restaurant. For Page Six, it is the “second White House cafeteria.” Every four years, the administration changes, but Cafe Milano is still the restaurant of American power. Mr Clinton had said that the difference between politicians and Nuschese is that the former has a mandate that expires, while Franco’s cafe never does.
The secret? Making people feel at home. Nuschese’s restaurant has always guaranteed privacy for its iconic guests. He made a reputation by offering a high-quality service while keeping the attention of the media away.