In Verona, an iconic 1950s gas station houses a restaurant with cocktail bar inspired by the world of café racers, where everything is "custom", from the interior to the gourmet burgers.
Special & Mr Martini was born in Verona in 2016, from the union of the world of Nicola Martini, aka Mr Martini, and the cosmopolitan energy of his son Matteo, both in love with London, Rock’n’Roll and good food.
Since 1994 Mr Martini has been a point of reference for the “special” world, and in particular café racer, since he fell in love with a Harley at a very young age and began to shape unique pieces in his atelier, starting from the base of a Triumph, an icon of British motorcycling, giving life to beautiful, fast bikes with an unmistakable style. Many of the custom designs he made can be admired today, just like real works of art, in the Special & Mr Martini restaurant.
We are what we build. Simplicity, passion, freedom, madness and constant commitment are the ingredients of our life and of this place.
Housed in an old service station, everything inside is inspired by the world of bikers, from the furnishings, created entirely starting from original spare parts and motorcycle parts converted for “domestic” use, up to the menu, thus making Special & Mr Martini a truly unique place in Italy.
Both the food and wine proposal and the mixology are, in fact, inspired by the “biker” culture and an international cuisine that enhances the typical dishes of pubs and diners, from hamburgers to ribs, up to the most popular pasta recipes abroad.
A Rock’n’Roll menu, therefore, but of the highest quality, evidenced by the care with which each supplier is selected, favoring local producers for fresh raw materials and meats coming exclusively from non-intensive farms, where animals grow and live freely, such as a selection of rump and shoulder of beef reared in the wild in the pastures of Lessinia.
The bakery products also come from local bakeries, which use top-quality stone-ground flours, live sourdough, long leavening, and great attention is paid to the organic, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan world with © Beyond Meat, an innovative vegetable and natural burger, gluten-free and soy-free.
On the menu, we find appetizers such as pata negra, fried and tartare, greedy first courses such as Cacio e Pepe Gold with pecorino romano, Sarawak pepper and red prawn tartare from Mazara del Vallo, gourmet burgers, selected meats such as ribs in BBQ sauce or Wagyu diaphragm, and various fish main courses.
Even the mise en place is one that is never forgotten: from the Diesel with Seletti cutlery in the shape of workshop tools, to the “jerrycan” bottles up to the bolt-shaped glasses.
The same quality placed in the raw material is also dedicated to the wine list which counts on collaborations with the best wineries in the area, such as Le Vigne di San Pietro which for Special & Mr Martini has created the special Vedo Doppio label. Excellent drinks, small works of art such as the V-12 cocktail created by bartender Romesh based on gin Engine, Timut pepper, celery, basil, lime, and served in a glass Engine customized Mr Martini (which is complimentary).
In addition to the dining room and the outdoor terrace featuring cascades of lights, Mr Martini on the lower floor houses an original private “workshop” room also available for dinners or private parties.
To stay updated on the many events organized by the restaurant, just follow Special & Mr Martini on social networks. In particular, on Tuesdays do not miss the Special Burger Nights based on original gourmet burgers served in collaboration with the wines of wineries chosen from among the youngest and most qualitative realities of the area.
The term “café racer” was born in the 1950s when groups of young people began to customize their motorcycles (only from the post-war period they become, in fact, within everyone’s reach) by removing comfort and accessories to make them lighter and faster, as well as for an aesthetic factor. It is the era of the birth of Rock’n’Roll and young riders find themselves outside the “cafes”, such as the famous Ace Cafe in London. It is the beginning of a new way of experiencing the motorcycle that combines aesthetics with the concept of freedom and lightness. Exactly the spirit that still breathes today at Special & Mr Martini.