Due Cucina is as Italian as it gets; offering fresh, simple dishes at an affordable price. The Village at Totem Lake will be the duo’s second location and is slated for a late December 2020 opening. It is located at 12670 120th Avenue NE, Suite 170, Kirkland WA 98034.

When friends Davide Macchi and Filippo Fiori opened the first Due Cucina in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood in 2016, the impetus was to celebrate their Italian heritage through the food and recipes cooked for generations by their families.  That meant making their pasta by hand each day; seeking the finest local ingredients from trusted sources, even though they may come at a higher price; and deploying technology for self-service, speedy ordering.

Macchi and Fiori have been friends for years, attending school together in Italy’s Tuscany region. Following high school, they each worked summer jobs as waiters in London.  After University, graduate studies took Fiori to Canada, then China, where he completed a Ph.D. in nuclear science and technology at Tsinghua University. While there he taught Italian cooking classes and even appeared regularly on a television cooking show. Macchi’s undergrad degree came from the University of Bologna, followed by an MBA from MIT’s Sloan School of Management.

Says Macchi: “We appeal to foodies and discerning diners who love Italian food but don’t want to break the bank to eat it. They can taste the depth of flavors and authenticity of our dishes, which they crave. We have always known that our vision for Due Cucina and our strategic plan called for replication and expansion. We think that high volume, urban and suburban locations are the right fit for our growth. The profile of the tenants at the Village at Totem Lake are the right mix of like-minded quality brands that share our sensibility. The outdoor-oriented design of Totem Lake and the demographic diversity of Kirkland will draw a wide range of age groups.”

As Executive Chef, Fiori takes great pride in the techniques and ingredients he deploys to create their authentic Italian meal experience. Many of the recipes used at Due Cucina are passed down through generations and come from the owner’s parents and grandparents. “Cooking is an integral part of my Italian DNA,” he says. To that end, Fiori holds firm on deploying the principals of the slow food movement. He aims to foster the preparation and eating of locally-sourced foods and celebrating Italian heritage and culture within a fast-casual format.  A stickler for tradition, everything is made from scratch at Due Cucina but the bread. And once space permits, Fiori will make their focaccia and other bread, too. Pasta, handmade throughout the day and a mainstay of the menu, motivates Fiori to direct his attention toward finding exactly the right sustainably processed flour. He purchases prime cuts of meat from regional ranchers and grinds it to create his special blend of pork and beef for Bolognese ragú. Instead of purchasing, he cures his pork to create guanciale-an Italian cured meat prepared from pork jowl and ages the meat for two months in a dedicated refrigerator.

Emerging Concepts, Fast Casual, News