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Eataly is an Italian multi-level gastronomic mega-store opened in 2012 in the old terminal of the Ostiense Station in Rome. It is both a store, providing high quality products organized in such a way that it looks like an outdoor market, and an open restaurant with seven different food venues. The store provides many food related entertainment opportunities as well. Eataly has just recently opened a second store in Rome, near Termini Train Station.
The brand Eataly is the combination of two English words: ‘eat’ and ‘Italy’. Eataly is about eating Italian food, not simply Mediterranean food. The concept is about living the Italian way: eating excellent food combined with wine, culture and history. As a matter of fact, the company’s manifesto says: ‘by creating and offering the best products, we improve our own lives: that means quality food, quality drink and ultimately quality time.’
Slow Food entrepreneur Oscar Farinetti opened Eataly’s first store in Turin in 2007. Today, its main goal is still to demonstrate that high quality products can be made available to everyone: ‘easy to find and at affordable prices’.
Initially, Eataly’s brand was born by combining a number of small companies operating in the food and wine trade in the Piedmont region. The brand’s website says: ‘since its first opening, Eataly has been able to offer the best artisan products at reasonable prices by creating a direct relation between producers and distributors, and focusing on sustainability, responsibility and sharing’. Eataly recreates the experience of the market and re-establishes a direct connection with food producers.
The Roman store opened in 2012 and has since become not only a destination to acquire groceries, but also a place where Romans spend time with friends and enjoy meals in one of the eateries. In addition to the store and eating opportunities, cooking classes with some of the best Italian chefs are offered in the Ostiense mega-store.
Besides its focus on high quality agricultural products, the company also strongly believes in values such as sustainability, responsibility and sharing. Eataly cares about communicating the faces, production methods and stories of the people and companies who produce the food and wine found in the store. In its manifesto the Eataly Company says: ‘we love high quality food and drink. We love the stories about it, the people who produce it, the places it comes from’. They also add, ‘we share with you the stories of the people and places behind all that we offer. The more you know the more you enjoy.’