Antonio Cecconi - well known as “The Italian Gourmet” - brings nearly four decades of authentic Italian cooking experience to the table.
Born and raised in Sardinia, that picturesque, charming mountainous island west of Italy, Antonio learned to cook where most good chefs begin - in his mother's kitchen. After coming to the United States, Antonio managed an Italian restaurant in Pennsylvania before being recruited by Pillsbury to be part of their new Minneapolis-based product development team. After six years with Pillsbury, Antonio launched his first restaurant, Bravo! establishing a firm reputation in the Minneapolis food scene. By introducing authentic Italian cuisine with Bravo!, he received widespread acclaim followed by numerous consulting engagements; The Darden Restaurant Group (the parent company of the Olive Garden restaurant chain), Carlson Companies, Brinker International, and other major companies relied on his creative expertise. Antonio's also the author of the Betty Crocker Italian Cookbook series.
Today Antonio operates a very successful corporate and home catering business (The Italian Gourmet) in the greater Minneapolis / St. Paul area, where he has resided since 1979. Because he loves to personally share his passion for Italian cuisine, Antonio regularly teaches cooking classes both in local schools and cooking stores, including Sopra Sotto!
Antonio is still active in creative consulting for a number of national food companies, including General Mills and Dakota Growers Pasta Company, where he draws on his passion and knowledge of Italian cooking to develop new products and innovative menu ideas.
Twice yearly trips to Italy continue to inspire Antonio's gastronomic creativity and enable him to research new food ideas and stay abreast of Italian cooking as it continues to evolve.
Begin today to share Antonio's love of Italian food - whether savoring his delectable offerings at lunch or an event, delighting your palate (and those of your family or friends!) with one of his simple, mouth-watering recipes, or learning his secrets personally in one of his classes or in the comfort of your home with family and friends.
Let Antonio bring a taste of Italy to you.
The Shops at University Square - Downtown Rochester, MN - PH: 507-252-5522
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