Italians in London | Italians in London Serena de Filippis
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# 19

Serena De Filippis

Photo and concept by © Rob Venom 2022

I was born and raised in the beautiful city of Naples, and I think every little part of me reflects my origins: my energy, my frankness and my solarity. At the age of 18 I moved to Rome, a city that I love and that I still consider my second home, to study law. I graduated and became a criminal lawyer (barrister). This was my job until I moved to London, in 2016.
My hobbies are baking (which is now my job), photography and traveling. I love animals, cats in particular (I have 2 here and 2 in Naples).
What do you do in your life in London?
When I decided to move here in London, I made a life and career change. I quit my job as a lawyer to indulge my strong baking passion. That’s why I founded DOLCE, my startup – it’s an e-commerce through which I sell Italian home made pastries – and enrolled in the International Culinary school Le Cordon Bleu.
What is the reason to leave Italy and come to London?
I left my country – that I adore – because I was not happy with how my life was going on. I was feeling frustrated by my job (I was underpaid and exploited), sick of the corruption in the world of work (you need a recommendations for everything), and my personal life was a mess. So I decided to take a leap of faith and I came here.
What were your best and worst experiences in London.
My best experiences in London are all professionals. Since I came here I had the chance to do whatever I wanted and get wherever I wanted, without knowing anyone and counting only on my skills and capacities. One of the best choice/experience in my life since I’ve been here it has been going to Le Cordon Bleu.
There aren’t really worst experiences, just little things of the British mentality and way of living that I really do not understand.
I asked you to choose a place in London that you like or you are tied to, what was your choice and why you made it?
My choice was the area in which I live – Angel. There are small streets in this borough with small cafés that I really like. They are more “bite-sized” (a misura d’uomo), not crowded, quite. Then all along the canals, close to the water. I miss my sea.
During your early times in London, did you have any problem?
I didn’t. But I think this is mainly because I had my boryfriend here already. He lives in London since 2006.
What do you think about this project?
I’ve found it really interesting, that’s why I agreed to be part of it. And I am really curious to see the final result.
How do you think you could support and promote Italian culture? 
Italian food is one of the best in the world (the best one, for me). Our culinary heritage is priceless
and it’s part of our culture. With what I do, I try to promote the traditional Neapolitan/Italians
pastries – giving them a new, modern twist. Also it’s a way to let British aware of the fact that it is
possible to have a delicious cake without eating 3 kg of butter and sugar!
But there is more than that: my ambition is to bring here the idea/concept that Italians have of food.
It doesn’t simply means “eating”, but “taking care of someone”, “sharing” experiences with your
beloved ones. Here people don’t have the habit of having dinner together at home with friends and
eating all together, with some good wines and delicious pastries. Or having a tray of pastries at the
end of your Sunday lunches…