A glass structure houses the kitchen of starred Chris Oberhammer, counter-current chef
We are at the entrance to the Val di Landro and in the background stand the 3 Cime di Lavaredo, symbol of the Dolomites.
The magical landscape tells stories of the past, in what was once the park of the Grand Hotel Dobbiaco.
A structure full of charm, built by the Südbahngesellschaft in 1878 with the aim of exploiting the new railway line that connected Vienna to Innsbruck.
Destination of the international “jet set” over the years, after the two world wars it went into ruin … Today the structure houses the Euregio Gustav Mahler Dobbiaco Dolomiti Cultural Center and the Foundation’s Guesthouse, the Alta Pusteria music school, the Tre Cime Visitor Center, the “Jugenddienst Hochpustertal” and the Youth Hostel.
But that’s not all: inside the evocative park of the former Grand Hotel there is a glass structure that reflects the sunlight.
A microcosm of true beauty that tells the Dolomites through the kitchen.
A meadow of herbs and wildflowers surrounds Tilia, Chef Chris Oberhammer’s 1 Michelin Star restaurant, Tilia is the Latin name of the tree “Tilio”.
In the house that belonged to the chef’s family, in Santa Maria, a hamlet of Dobbiaco, there is one of the oldest lime trees in the area, planted by Chris’s great-grandfather.
“It is part of my roots, of my origin. Throughout Europe, the lime tree is a symbol of friendship and fidelity, of stability and honesty, of long-lived familiarity.
The Tiglio represents a safe place to feel protected.
So I chose to call my restaurant TILIA, a welcoming and positive place for my guests “.
Eclectic, tattooed, whimsical and passionate chef, Chris Oberhammer loves the land, South Tyrol.
A passion born as a child when he loved being curious behind the stove; touch the raw material in the various seasons and see its transformation in the kitchen.
“I have dedicated my whole life to cooking. Cooking is life.
I have respect for the small local producers I work with and for the product that passes through my hands.
Precisely for this reason it is my great concern to always make something truly special, highlighting the flavor of the product itself “.
So Chris tells himself, with his contagious smile.
And how can we not be infected by so much passion that he puts into every creation of him? A kitchen that is a union of modernity and simplicity.
A gastronomic proposal that praises the product, really paying close attention to the theme of seasonality … At the Tilia, a gastronomic proposal aimed at enhancing the territory is staged.
We are in fact in the heart of the Unesco heritage of the Dolomites. A rich culture that “must not be lost” but must be valued as well as local products.
The chef tells me that his role as chef is to preserve this heritage because we are part of it with body and soul. We must maintain and protect what is important to us to avoid that all the beauty we are surrounded by is lost over time.
This thought of protecting the territory and enhancing its excellence has found expression in the chef’s new project. It is “MONS by Chris Oberhammer”, a project born on the themes of sustainability, regionality, respect, honesty and environmental awareness.
MONS is synonymous with all of this. MONS is the Latin name of the mountain. It is the vision of the chef and of his entire team.
A principle that accompanies all their actions on a daily basis: from the Tilia kitchen to everything that is done outdoors.
“MONS is honestly sustainable”, explains the chef who defines sustainable “adapting a menu based on the harvest in the garden, using ingredients directly from the farms in the immediate vicinity and using nature in a conscious way”.
Involving customers and enthusiasts or onlookers in events that allow you to come into direct contact with nature, the territory and local producers.
It is a connection between people, nature and food such as picnics or mountain walks with a gourmet stop. Tilia is living the mountain, its territory, its peaks.
It is the rediscovery of ancient flavors and traditions: a corner of beauty where you can find yourself on a journey through the Dolomites, away from the unbridled daily routine.
It is an expression of a time and a space that, through food, becomes nourishment for the soul.