Chris Oberhammer Defines South Tyrolean Cuisine at Tilia Restaurant

You will have to give up your dusty hiking boots and shorts to casual elegant clothes when you venture into the door of Ristorante Tilia, a Michelin-starred restaurant in the heart of the Dolomites. The restaurant is housed in a small modern glass and steel structure in the middle of the park of the former Grand Hotel Dobbiaco where Chef Chris Oberhammer and wife Sommelier Anita Mancini welcome their guests. Five tables with subdued tones of ecru of carpeting and upholstery, black metal and wooden tables fill up the glass-enclosed dining room while colorful paintings and sculptures made by the chef himself zhuzh up the place. A true artist to the core, Chris spends his time creating his artworks when not in the kitchen.

Natural colors and textures affect the chef's cuisine as he meticulously works on the ingredients with the technical knowledge he learned in France. The ingredients he prefers are procured locally. Meat comes from South Tyrolean farmers whom he knows personally, fish are sourced from trusted fishermen while the vegetables are harvested straight from his own garden. He believes in simplicity and respect and this reflects on how he works on the ingredients, unadulterated as much as possible to take out the best of their best qualities. 

As a chef whose goal is to renew, improve and surprise, Chris has attained these three important aspects of his culinary career, in fact, even surpassed them with overwhelming attainment with the collection of accolades that he has received throughout his years of cooking. Having been interested in cooking from his youth, he forewent his passion in the Emma Hellensteiner Hotel and Alimentary Professional School in South Tyrol then took apprenticeships important hotels in the region which he soon left for more experiences at the Michelin-starred restaurants in Belgium and France namely La Maison du Boef, La Villa Lorraine and L' Ecaillier du Palais Royal. The most formative years had been his exposure at the restaurants in the French Riviera while working as a Chef de Partie alongside Alain Ducasse at the three Michelin-starred restaurant Le Louis XV in Monaco was the culmination of his culinary experience.

Chris opened Tilia in 2001 in the historical Ansitz Baumgarten in Vintl in South Tyrol along with his wife Anita who handles the dining room and from its opening, he has received numerous awards for his work including being the one of the Best 9 Restaurants in Northern Italy in 2004 and Emerging Restaurant of 2005 in the "Besser Essen und Reisen" of the Atlas Group. And in 2007, a Michelin star arrived. When 2010 arrived, Tilia moved to its new home in the premises of the Grand Hotel Dobbiaco where its steel and glass ambience blends harmoniously with his artworks the aesthetically modern cuisine that Chris enchants his guests with.

Chris co-founded Culinaria Tirolensis along with three other top chefs Markus Holzer and Josef Mühlmann as well as sommelier André Cis from South Tyrol. It is an association that strives to promote the regional cuisine which concentrates on the cultural and gastronomical landscape of East Tyrol and the Val Pusteria. And in 2018, they published their first book.

The menu has three options for every course with prices ranging from: Appetizers (€28 to €35), First Course of Pasta and Risotto (€30 to €35), Main Course of Fish and Meat (€39 to €45), and Desserts (€17). Tasting Menus for the whole table are: Three Courses (€70) with optional Wine Pairing (€30), Four Courses (€85) with optional Wine Pairing (€42), and Five Courses (€95) with optional Wine Pairing (€48). The dishes in the tasting menu starting from the amuse-bouche to the dessert were remarkably prepared with critical attention to aesthetics and depth of flavors. Notably good are the Braised Ox in Red Wine, Dark Potatoes and Carrots wherein the meat is exceptionally tender with pronounced balance of flavors as well as the Sole Flan with Dinkel Wheat from Waldermeisterhof Farm Drowned in Bouillabaisse Sauce.

Ristorante Tilia

Via Dolomiti, 31/B
39034 Dobbiaco (BZ), Italy
Tel: +39 335 8127783
Opening times: Wednesday to Sunday (12:00 to 14:00) / Tuesday to Saturday (19:00 to 23:30)