Michael White (chef)

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Michael White
Michael White at James Beard Awards 2010.jpg
White interviewed at the James Beard Foundation Awards 2010
Michael John White

July 14th, 1971 (age 51)
Beloit, Wisconsin
EducationKendall Culinary Institute
SpouseGiovanna White
ChildrenFrancesca White
Culinary career
Cooking styleItalian
Previous restaurant(s)
    • Fiamma
    • Alto
    • Convivio
    • Marea
    • Osteria Morini
    • Osteria Morini NJ
    • Ai Fiori
    • Al Molo
    • Nicoletta
    • Costata
    • Due Mari
    • Vaucluse

Michael White is the former Head Chef and Owner of the Altamarea Group, which is composed of the restaurants Marea, Ai Fiori, Vaucluse, Osteria Morini, Nicoletta, Costata, and The Butterfly in New York, Osteria Morini and Due Mari in New Jersey, and Al Molo in Hong Kong.[1] Marea earned two Michelin stars (in 2019 it was downgraded to a single star[2]) and is a member of the prestigious Relais and Chateaux.[3][4] Ai Fiori has also earned a Michelin star.

In 2021, White left his positions with the Altamarea Group, after decamping permanently to his country home in the Hamptons during the COVID-19 pandemic.[1]


Michael White spent his childhood in Beloit, Wisconsin before enrolling in Kendall Culinary Institute in 1989. Following Kendall, he spent seven years training in Italy at Ristorante San Domenico in Imola, Italy under the culinary guidance of chef Valentino Marcattilii, while receiving additional training in Paris and the South of France.[4][5]

In 2002, he became Executive Chef of Fiamma Osteria, which has since closed, but received several accolades including a Michelin star. In 2006, White published a cookbook entitled Fiamma: The Essence of Contemporary Italian Cooking.

In 2007, White partnered with Ahmass Fakahany to open Due Terre and later Due Mari in New Jersey, both of which also went on to receive awards. He then took control of L'Impero and Alto in Midtown Manhattan, the former of which was rebranded as Convivo; both later received Michelin stars.

Additional restaurants with which White has been affiliated[edit]

  • In September 2008, Ahmass Fakahany and Michael White opened their second New Jersey restaurant called Due Mari in New Brunswick.
  • In May 2009, Fakahany and White opened Marea, which received numerous accolades including two Michelin stars in the 2012 Guide (downgraded to one star in 2019) and three stars from the New York Times.
  • In October 2010, Fakahany and White opened the first Osteria Morini in downtown Manhattan, an Italian restaurant focusing on cuisine from Emilia-Romagna. Two subsequent branches opened in Bernardsville, NJ and Washington DC in 2012 and 2013, respectively.
  • In November 2010, White opened Ai Fiori, a Mediterranean restaurant, at the Langham Place Hotel; the venture received one Michelin Star and three stars from The New York Times.
  • In May 2011, White and the Altamarea Group opened Al Molo in Victoria Harbor, Hong Kong.
  • Nicoletta Pizzeria opened in New York's East Village in June 2012; later branches opened next to Osteria Morini in Bernardsville in 2015 and in the King of Prussia Mall outside Philadelphia in 2016.
  • White and Altamarea opened a steakhouse named Costata in Manhattan's SoHo neighborhood in 2013, which later closed; Altamarea currently uses its brand for a steak delivery service.
  • Chop Shop was another steakhouse, located in London's Theatre District; it opened in September 2013 and subsequently closed.
  • In December 2013, the Altamarea Group opened a pan-Italian restaurant, Ristorante Morini, on Manhattan's Upper East Side; a franchise with the same name was opened that same year in Istanbul's Zorlu Center mall.
  • In September 2015, the Altamarea Group opened its first French restaurant, Vaucluse, on the Upper East Side, which later permanently closed in 2020.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b McCart, Melissa (2021-05-10). "Michael White Is Out at the Altamarea Restaurant Group". Grub Street. Retrieved 2022-04-18.
  2. ^ "From Blue Hill to Marea: Here's Who Won (And Lost) Stars in Michelin's 2020 NYC Guide".
  3. ^ "Michelin Star Recipients - 2013". OpenTable. Archived from the original on January 23, 2013. Retrieved December 31, 2012.
  4. ^ a b "Michael White Bio". Marea. Retrieved December 31, 2012.
  5. ^ "Chef Michael White of Alta Marea Restaurant Group - Biography". Star Chefs. April 2012. Retrieved January 1, 2013.
  6. ^ Warerkar, Tanay (2020-07-10). "Michael White's Upscale Foray Into French Cuisine, Vaucluse, Has Permanently Closed". Eater NY. Retrieved 2022-04-18.

External links[edit]