GIFTING: Who is Adriano Rampazzo giving his book to this Christmas?

The illustrator behind Signature Dishes That Matter tells us about his year, and who is on his gift list this season
Adriano Rampazzo
Adriano Rampazzo

Like a lot of people, in 2019 Adriano Rampazzo has loved food and worried over politics. However, Rampazzo has a little more to love and hate than most. The Brazilian-born artist and chef worked and trained in London, before returning to São Paulo to work as an illustrator. For much of the past year, Rampazzo has been working on the beautiful, detailed pictures in our new book Signature Dishes That Matter. However, all that poring over classic dishes hasn’t entirely distracted him from the rise of populist politics in Latin America. Read on to find out about his highs and lows for 2019, as well as who has made his Christmas list this holiday season.


Spherical-I Green Olives, Ferran Adrià and Albert Adrià, elBulli, Spain, 2005
Spherical-I Green Olives, Ferran Adrià and Albert Adrià, elBulli, Spain, 2005

What inspired you most this year? Definitely working on Signature Dishes That Matter. It was great to work for over five months drawing food, which is my favourite subject matter. I spent a lot of time researching the dishes prior to start working on the drawings, watching videos, reading articles and looking at photographs. It was very inspiring, and I learned a lot. It made me really hungry though! It was a bit sad to look everyday to all that amazing food, and not actually eat it.

What annoyed you most? The rise of a fascist government in my country, and all that’s happening in Latin America at the moment. It is just really sad that in 2019 we still need to debate such basic things, but the fight continues. On the professional side, although working on a major publication in the beginning of the year, it’s been tough getting decent commissions more recently. Finding this constant flow of jobs has been really hard in the past two or three years.

What was your personal highlight? Again, Signature Dishes. It makes me happy to see nearly 250 of my watercolours in a big hardcover book that just looks beautiful, and involves so many great people.


 Peach Melba, Auguste Escoffier, Savoy Hotel, United Kingdom c.1893.
Peach Melba, Auguste Escoffier, Savoy Hotel, United Kingdom c.1893.

What can we expect from you in 2020? I’d love to continue working in amazing projects like Signature Dishes was. Of course, as an illustrator, I can work drawing pretty much anything. However, I just really like drawing food. I’m always looking for commissions and collaborations, that’s the freelance life! I have plans to start working on a book about everyday food and how people relate to it. It is a mixture between a comic book, portraits of food and people and some recipes. I’ll try to get it published in 2021. Another thing I’d love to do is to work on a book by one of the many chefs involved in Signature Dishes. So many of them are still working full on, so working in depth with a few of them would be really amazing. So chefs, if you’re reading this, let’s make a book!

Who will you give your Phaidon book to for Christmas? I gave a copy to my mom, because of her unrestricted love and support. I also gave a copy to a friend who owns a restaurant, she’s really into cookbooks, and she really liked it.


Signature Dishes That Matter

Do you know someone really into cookbooks, great food, or great illustration? Then give them a copy of Signature Dishes That Matter this Christmas! This gorgeous book reveals the closely held secrets behind the world's most iconic recipes - dishes that put restaurants on the map, from 19th century fine dining and popular classics, to today's most innovative kitchens, both high-end and casual. Curated by experts and organized chronologically, it's both a landmark cookbook and a fascinating cultural history of dining out. Buy it here.

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Phaidon is the premier global publisher of the creative arts with over 1,500 titles in print. We work with the world's most influential artists, chefs, writers and thinkers to produce innovative books on art, photography, design, architecture, fashion, food and travel, and illustrated books for children. Phaidon is headquartered in London and New York City.
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