Photo Credit: Peter Pioppo

Iacopo Falai
68 Clinton St
New York, NY 10002
(212) 253-1960

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Iacopo Falai
FALAI | New York

When Iacopo Falai accompanied his mother to the mayor's office in his native Florence and told her of his aspirations to work at Enoteca Pinchiorri, which was was located in the same building, she didn't take him too seriously – it's rare that one's first kitchen experience is in a three-Michelin-starred establishment. But the kitchen had faith in Falai. Soon he was making the breads and pastries daily. It was here that his philosophy of making everything in-house – from bread to pasta – really took root. After four years in Florence, Falai consulted for Matsuya in Tokyo, and collaborated with legendary Chef Michel Bras and Chocolatier Michel Belin of Fauchon, before returning home to Enoteca Pinchiorri as Executive Pastry Chef. In 2001 Falai ventured across the Atlantic to serve as the Pastry Chef of Le Cirque and Osteria del Circo, followed by a turn as Executive Chef of Bread Tribeca. Finally at his own eponymous restaurant on the Lower East Side, Falai has brought a pastry chef's sense of precision and a cuisine chef's sense of spontaneity to classic Italian cooking.


Hudson Valley Foie Gras Cannoli, Candied Taggiasche Olives, and Salty Spicy Valrhona Xocopili Chocolate Sauce
Chef Iacopo Falai of Falai – New York, NY
Adapted by

Yield: 5 Servings


  • 10 pieces of filo dough, cut into 3½-inch by 7-inch rectangles
  • 50 grams of melted butter
  • Stainless steel cylinder (3½-inch long, ½-inch diameter)

    Foie Gras Mousse:
  • 685 grams of Hudson Valley foie gras
  • 1 quart milk
  • 100 grams ice
  • 50 grams melted butter
  • 30 grams cognac
  • 20 grams simple syrup
  • 3 grams white pepper
  • 3 grams pink salt
  • 5 grams salt

    Black Candied Olives:
  • 1 quart of water
  • 1500 grams sugar, divided into three 500 gram portions
  • 750 grams black Taggiasche olives, pits removed

    Chocolate Sauce:
  • 400 grams milk, heated to 194°F
  • 250 grams Valrhona Xocopili chocolate

    To Serve:
  • 55 grams dried figs, skin only, brunoise
  • 70 grams candied black olives, brunoise
  • 750 grams foie gras mousse


For the Cannoli:
Brush each piece of filo with melted butter. Place the cannoli mold on the beginning of the piece of filo dough and wrap it to the end. Make sure the end of the filo dough is on the bottom of the cannoli. Brush the top again with melted butter. Cook at 400°F in a convection oven for around 6 minutes. Remove cannoli from mold while it’s still warm. Keep in a dry container.

For the Foie Gras Mousse:
Cut the foie gras in half the night before and soak it in one quart of milk and 100 grams of ice to clarify the veins. The next day, dry the foie with a piece of paper, and put in the robot coupe. Add melted butter, congac, simple syrup, white pepper, and salt. Puree and season to taste. Pass the mix through a tamis.
Note: You should be able to get about 750 grams of mousse.

For the Candied Black Olives:
Rinse black olives in cold water. Over low heat, combine olives, water, and 500 grams of sugar. At the first boil, add the second portion of 500 grams of sugar. Stir with spatula to make sure the sugar melts properly. After a couple hours, add the third portion of sugar. Keep the pot on the stove with the pilot light on for one night. Take out the olives and put in the dehydrator for one night at 100°F.

For the Chocolate Sauce:
Bring the milk to boil and pour on top of the chocolate, whisking well to blend.

To Assemble and Serve:
Pour 30 grams of chocolate sauce into a clear box. Blend foie gras mousse with fig and olive brunoise. Fill each cannoli with 20 grams the foie gras mixture and dip in the chocolate. Serve two chocolate dipped cannolis per plate.

Wine Pairing:

Capitel San Rocco, Rosso Del Veronese “Ripasso,” Tedeschi, 2003

   Published: September 2006