Joe Bastianich in New York City (2011)
September 17, 1968
Astoria, Queens, New York City, New York, US
|Residence||Greenwich, Connecticut, US|
|Alma mater||Boston College (B.A.)|
|Occupation||restaurateur, winemaker, author|
|Relatives||Tanya Bastianich Manuali (sister)|
Early life and education
The son of Felice and Lidia Bastianich, Joseph Bastianich was born in Astoria, Queens, New York City, New York, in 1968, four years before his parents purchased their first restaurant, Buonavia, in Forest Hills, Queens. He was eleven years old when they purchased their second restaurant, Villa Seconda, also in Queens, and thirteen when his parents sold the two Queens restaurants and launched their flagship restaurant, Felidia (a portmanteau of their two first names), on the East Side of Manhattan near the 59th Street Bridge.
Joseph attended Fordham Preparatory School in the Bronx and skipped the eighth grade. He received his B.A. from Boston College. After graduation, he worked as a bond trader at Merrill Lynch on Wall Street, but soon after[when?] abandoned that career route to join the family's restaurant business.
Soon after joining his parents' restaurant business, he convinced his parents to put up the capital and partner with him in 1993 to open Becco (Italian for "peck, nibble, savor") in the Theater District in Manhattan. Like Felidia, Becco was successful. The family opened additional restaurants outside New York City, starting with Lidia's Kansas City in 1993. In 1997 Felice and Lidia Bastianich divorced after 31 years of marriage. His father resigned from the business and transferred his share in the partnership to their two children, Joseph and Tanya.
The following year, Joe teamed up with chef Mario Batali to open Babbo Ristorante e Enoteca. The restaurant earned three stars from The New York Times. Continuing the partnership, the pair opened seven more restaurants in New York City: Lupa, Esca, Casa Mono, Bar Jamón, Otto, Del Posto (in 2005), and most recently (2010), Eataly. In Los Angeles, Bastianich and Batali opened Osteria Mozza and Pizzeria Mozza (which have branches at Marina Bay Sands in Singapore), and in Las Vegas, B&B Ristorante, Enoteca San Marco, and Carnevino. Closer to home, the duo revived the old Tarry Lodge in Port Chester, New York. In 2010, Del Posto became "the first Italian restaurant to receive a four-star ranking in [The New York Times] since Parioli Romanissimo, reviewed by John Canaday in 1974," 36 years earlier.
Bastianich has established three wineries: Azienda Agricola Bastianich in Friuli; La Mozza s.r.l. in Maremma, Tuscany; and in Tritono Mendoza, Argentina. He recently[when?] acquired the Brandini Estate in La Morra, Piedmont, Italy.
With wine expert David Lynch (wine director then general manager at Bastianich and Batali's restaurant Babbo, and a former senior editor at Wine & Spirits), Bastianich co-authored Vino Italiano: The Regional Wines of Italy (ISBN 978-1400097746) and Vino Italiano Buying Guide (ISBN 978-0307406507). In 2005, he was recognized as Outstanding Wine and Spirits Professional by both the James Beard Foundation and Bon Appétit magazine. In 2008, he and Mario Batali were awarded the James Beard Foundation’s Outstanding Restaurateur Award.
Joe's memoir, Restaurant Man (ISBN 978-0-670-02352-3), was released in May 2012.
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- About the Author of Vino Italiano at Random House
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