Cesare Casella

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Cesare Casella
Born (1960-03-01) March 1, 1960 (age 57)
Lucca, Italy
Education Culinary Institute Ferdinando Martini, Montecatini, Italy,
Website http://www.cesarecasella.com/
Culinary career
Cooking style Italian

Cesare Casella (born March 1, 1960 in Lucca, Italy) is an Italian chef, restaurateur, writer, consultant and educator. He is the owner and executive chef of two Italian restaurants in New York City and an expert in Tuscan Italian cuisine.[1] He currently holds the position as the Dean of Italian Studies at the International Culinary Center in New York City, which is also home to The French Culinary Institute.[2] Casella is the founder of the Italian Cooking School by Cesare Casella that strives to teach about the true meaning of Italian culture and cooking. He owns and operates the Republic of Beans, which imports Italian heirloom beans.[3] He also serves as a consultant to upscale distributing companies for salami and Italian food trattorias.

Casella’s signature style includes a piece of fresh rosemary in his shirt pocket.

Personal life[edit]

Casella learned the trade at Vipore, the trattoria owned by his parents, Rosa and Pietro, outside of Lucca, Italy.[4] At age 14, Casella enrolled in the Culinary Institute Ferdinando Martini, in Montecatini, Italy, despite his parents wishes. After graduating, he worked in his parents' trattoria in an effort to transform Vipore from a local favorite into both a regional and international destination. He began developing his trademark herbal cuisine, thanks in part to a garden with over 40 types of aromatic herbs, and updating traditional Italian recipes with new ideas and twists.[5] By 1991, Cesare had earned Vipore a Michelin Guide star and a reputation that attracted clients from Henry Kissinger to Tom Cruise.[6]

Casella believes being Italian is not about the kind of food you eat or the fashion you wear. It is about a lifestyle that embraces simplicity, knowledge and enjoyment of life.[7] He now lives with his wife and daughter in New York City.

Professional career[edit]

Since its opening, Casella’s salumeria has been met with a number of accolades and good reviews, including the honor of “Best Meatballs” in New York Magazine,[8] a notable “Dining Brief” by The New York Times' Frank Bruni, and four stars by Time Out New York and the magazine’s “Critic’s Choice” award.

Casella has appeared on “Daniel Boulud’s After Hours” playing host and guest chef. In 2007, he received the Food Art Magazine’s Silver Spoon Award for outstanding achievement in the culinary field.[9]

Chef Casella’s previous endeavors include the critically acclaimed Italian restaurant Maremma, located in Manhattan’s West Village that opened in 2005. New York Magazine named Maremma one of the Top 5 “Best New Restaurants” in New York City in 2006. .”[10] At the end of its first year, Maremma was honored with 3 stars from Forbes Magazine, naming it one of the best restaurants in the country. Food critic Adam Platt deemed Maremma to be one of the “Best Places to Eat In 2007,” [5] and Cesare’s lamb meatballs gained notoriety, claiming the #1 spot in New York Magazine’s “Best Meatballs” in New York City.

Casella launched the “Republic of Beans” shortly prior, an Italian import company of heirloom beans, grains and spices.,[11] in order for him to recreate some of his favorite Italian dishes and my signature dishes with authentic ingredients.

When Casella arrived in New York City in the early 90’s, he desired to propose his Tuscan style cooking to the American public. His early career included being named Executive Chef of Coco Pazzo in New York City in 1993. Soon afterwards, he launched its sister restaurant, Il Toscanaccio. He opened his first solo New York restaurant, Beppe, in honor of his grandfather, Giuseppe Polidori in March 2001. .[4][12] Beppe earned critical praise and commercial success for its authentic, rule-bending Tuscan cuisine.

Culinary Schools[edit]

In 2006, the International Culinary Center, previously known as the French Culinary Institute,[13] appointed Casella as the first dean of Italian Studies in both New York City and Parma Italy. Casella designed and wrote the curriculum for the joint programs and continues to oversee the training of all chefs and instructors involved. The International Culinary Center School of Italian Studies, formerly known as The Italian Culinary Academy, launched in October 2006 in New York City and in January 2007 in Parma[14] 3.

In spring 2011, Casella launched The Italian Cooking School, a program in which he leads authentic culinary tours across Italy . Promoting a deep education in, and understanding of, Italian cuisine, ingredients and culture[15] as well as a video project that will document his culinary travels through Italy.[16]


Casella has written several books including: True Tuscan (Morrow 2005), Italian Cooking for Dummies (Wiley 2002), and Diary of a Tuscan Chef (Broadway 1998).

Introduction to Italian Cuisine, is his forthcoming book which will be the textbook for the Italian Culinary Academy.[17]

Guest Appearances[edit]

Casella has become a regular television personality with his infamous and charismatic Italian flair.[18] Appearances include:

The Secret Life Of, After Hours with Daniel Boulud, Top Chef, ABC’s Nightline, FOX News, New York 1, The Martha Stewart Show,[19] Iron Chef America, Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations, The Best Thing Ever, FOX 5's Good Day Café.


  1. ^ "Chef Cesare Casella of Salumeria Rosi-Biography". starchefs. Retrieved December 26, 2011. 
  2. ^ "Dean Cesare Casella". The International Culinary Center. Retrieved December 26, 2011. 
  3. ^ "Home". Cesare Casella's Republic of Beans. Retrieved December 26, 2011. 
  4. ^ a b Lee, Matt and Ted (February 11, 2004). "Cesare Casella; Where 'Duck à l'Orange' Is a Canard". The New York Times. Retrieved March 2, 2011. 
  5. ^ a b "Cesare Casella". cookstr. Retrieved December 26, 2011. 
  6. ^ "About Cesare Casella". cesarecasella.com. Retrieved September 9, 2011. 
  7. ^ "Home". Cesare Casella. Retrieved 36 December 2011.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  8. ^ "Best of New York: Eating". NY Magazine. 
  9. ^ "About Cesare". Italian Cooking School. Retrieved December 26, 2011. 
  10. ^ "Best of New York: 2006". NY Magazine. 
  11. ^ "Exclusive Interview: Chef Cesare Casella". Italia Living. Retrieved December 26, 2011. 
  12. ^ Burros, Marian (June 20, 2001). "A Seasoned Team and Tuscany". The New York Times. Retrieved March 2, 2011. 
  13. ^ "School of Italian Studies". International Culinary Center. 
  14. ^ "School of Italian Studies". The International Culinary Center. Retrieved December 29, 2011. 
  15. ^ "Q&A with Cesare Casella". Restaurant Girl. Retrieved December 29, 2011. 
  16. ^ "The Italian Cooking School". Retrieved December 29, 2011. 
  17. ^ "About Cesare Casella". Cesare Casella. Retrieved December 29, 2011. 
  18. ^ "Press". cesarecasella.com. Retrieved September 9, 2011. 
  19. ^ "Cesare Casella on Martha Stewart". youtube.com. Retrieved February 2, 2012. 

External links[edit]