:: itchefs-GVCI ::

Grana Padano

CPIC Launch Parma 2011: Participating Master Chefs' Profiles


Chef Patron, Forlino, Singapore
President of the Forum GVCI (Gruppo Virtuale Cuochi Italiani - Virtual Group of Italian Chefs)

With over 30 years of culinary experience as head of several award-winning Italian restaurants in Asia, as the legendary Mistral and Grissini in Hong Kong Mario has been a forerunner of genuine, quality Italian Cuisine in Asia. His style of cuisine marries classical Italian flavors and ingredients with contemporary, fine dining presentation and cooking techniques. Or as he puts it: "My style is contemporary but I retain authenticity".


Chef Patron, Salumeria Rosi, New York City

Having been the chef at the mythic Coco Pazzo and then at Il Toscanaccio, Cesare has brought success to several of the Big Apple’s Italian restaurants, such as Beppe and the Maremma. Author of books, host of TV programmes, an expert connoisseur of typical Italian products, he is the Dean of Italian Studies (Italian Culinary Academy) at the International Culinary Institute in New York.


Chef Patron, Bella Napoli, Glasgow

Born in Glasgow, Scotland, Domenico learnt much of his craft from his father, Alfredo, an immigrant from Italy and one of the pioneers of Italian cuisine in the region. Domenico, in his career, has been an untiring promoter of Italian cuisine in the United Kingdom. His restaurant, Bella Napoli, has above and beyond anything else become a Mecca for high quality Italian pizza and he himself a highly esteemed expert in the craft. His experience in pizza is appreciated also at an international level when he is invited to take part in competition juries.


TV Personality and Chef owner of Cucina Paradiso, Buenos Aires

Born in Milan and grew up in Puglia, Donato began his career at L'Antica Osteria del Teatro, Piacenza (Emilia Romagna). A veteran of Italian cuisine abroad, worked in famous establishments in the United States as well as Gianni Versace's personal chef at Casa Casuarina and New York. In Argentina and Latin America, since 2000, he has become a famous chef and host of television programs. He´s the owner and soul of Cucina Paradiso, deli, wine, coffee and more, located in Buenos Aires, and has published successful books that have won important international accolades.


Chef Patron, Murano, London

Angela is one of Britain’s most successful and talented chefs and has won many accolades, particularly during her collaboration with Gordon Ramsay. She has contributed significantly to the spread of quality, genuine Italian cuisine in Britain with her style of cooking, her books, and communications skills (she also writes for The Guardian and for Delicious Magazine). With Ramsay she opened Murano Restaurant in 2008, in Mayfair, serving a modern Italian cuisine, reflecting the roots of Angela’s family, which comes from Bardi, a town in the province of Parma (Emilia Romagna). Since October 2010 Angela is the sole owner of the Michelin starred Murano.


Chef Patron, Passo a Passo, Tokyo

Chef Kuniaki Arima, 39, has been the patron of Passo a passo (step by step) restaurant in Monzen Nakamachi, Tokyo, since 2002. In that year he came back from a 6 year long “tour” of apprenticeship in Italy. In that period he stayed in Bergamo, Firenze, Milano and Tuscany, working in restaurants as well as researching the home cuisine of housewives. From these women he learnt secrets and variations that not seldom appear as not authentic to the superficial observer. Chef Arima has both a great passion for and an impressive knowledge of Italian Cuisine, which he prepares with very selected and natural ingredients.


Executive Chef, Del Posto Restaurant, New York City

At Del Posto, which he runs with partners Mario Batali, Jason Denton, and Joe and Lidia Bastianich, Mark cooks a sensible interpretation of regional Italian “Cucina Classica”, utilizing responsibly raised and locally grown products. Del Posto holds a 4-star rating from the New York Times, and one star from the prestigious Guide Michelin. He has been working with many influential chefs such as Todd English, Scott Bryan and Jean Georges Vongerichten and worked in various successful Italian restaurants (Babbo, Lupa, Otto).


Executive Chef, Gaia Restaurant, Hong Kong

Chef Monti heads the kitchen at Gaia with a fresh and thoroughly modern style of Italian cooking. A native of Rome, Paolo has worked at some of The Eternal City’s most renowned restaurants, including Alberto Ciarla, the famous seafood venue and the Michelin-star Eden Hotel. Paolo also draws on seven years of experience with a number of leading Los Angeles restaurants, notably as sous chef to the legendary Mauro Vincenti at the famous REX il Ristorante, Louise’s Trattoria and the Alto Palato Trattoria.


Chef Patron, Aromi Italiani, Moscow

In Moscow, chef Rongoni’s name name is synonymous of quality traditional Italian Cuisine. He is an orthodox of Italian Cuisine and is against shortcuts and counterfeiting. Born in Milano, Pietro has taught his culinary secrets to the Russians and he has formed a mob of talented young chefs who are now cooking everywhere in Moscow and Russia at large.


Chef Patron, Il Genovese, Sapporo

Giulio has a long experience as culinary teacher, chef in 5 star hotels and restaurant owner. He lives and works in Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan, where he has owned (and cooked in) his Giulio’s Wine Bar, he recently opened Il genovese. Born in Liguria, strongly attached to his native land but open minded by nature, after more than 10 years in Japan, while he cooks only Italian, he has become an expert connoisseur of Japanese cuisine too.


Executive Chef, Tempo, London

A multi-lingual Economics graduate, Japanese born chef Yoshi Yamada has always been in love with Italy, where he has spent 4 years cooking in top restaurants in Naples (2 Michelin star Don Alfonso), Sardinia and Florence. During this time, he was exposed to a variety of regional cooking styles: Southern Italian, Sardinian, modern Italian seafood and rustic Tuscan trattoria cooking, especially meats and breads. Some of his dishes have been described as the “apotheosis of delicious simplicity”. In Japan, he worked for L’Atelier de Robuchon and managed the patisserie section of an exclusive Italian restaurant in Tokyo. In the UK, before Tempo, he has worked at Restaurant Gordon Ramsay in Chelsea, and after joined the Mediterranean Corbin & King’s St Alban.


Chef Owner, Ristorante Riviera, Guayaquil, Ecuador

From 1983, Luigi Passano has been living in Ecuador, first in the desert industry, and then in 1991 he opened the Ristorante Riviera and continued his career as chef/owner of the Riviera and of the da Luigi. A lover of traditional Italian cuisine, he follows the school of the master Gualtiero Marchesi, and his wife and he keep themselves well abreast of current cuisine in Italy by attending professional courses of regional cooking at the Ristorante Alma, Colorno, Province of Parma. He also maintains contact with some of the best chefs in Italy, Alajmo, Berton and Oldani to name some, and in order to maintain the highest of quality, he imports all the salamis, the cheeses, the wines, the tomatoes and the pastas, all those finest of products not produced locally, directly from Italy, and they allow him to distinguish himself with the ‘Italianness’ that his guests so highly appreciate.