Vincenzo Cucina Italiana
What’s your morning routine?
Every morning is different for me, but I have to say one thing that stays the same is my morning routine, with my family. I hang out with my children, then I go to the gym, go back home get ready and the restaurant life begins . Regardless of what the day consists of, I know that will always be something that was not on my schedule to deal with. But this is the restaurant business.
What inspired you to be a chef?
I was born into it. My parents had a mom and pop when I was born. In fact, this led to be my first job working in the kitchen with my Dad. So, I guess you could say my Father and Mother inspired me.
Who’s your mentor?
My father – Shadowing him in his little kitchen since I was 10 years old instilled in me the love for food, eventually leading my entering the culinary arts. But I never stop looking to stay up with the times. Since my family is all Italian, the conversations are always about the latest trend or who makes a dish this way or that way.
Describe your formal training.
It would be, old school. Although I went to culinary school, I pretty much learned all the essentials from my father. All my training has been hands on since a very young age, and most of my knowledge is by experience in the kitchen.
What has been the best day in the kitchen?
My best day of course was the opening of Vincenzo Cucina Italiana in 2014. Since then, every day is great day for me. Every day I am focused to improve and create to bring Vincenzo Cucina Italiana to the highest level that it can be. We have been getting recognized by the Sentinel voters several years so basically, I know that I am doing something right. I would like to add that I am grateful to our guests for appreciating what I do, and to continue to patronize my restaurant.
How do you end your day?
With my family. My wife waits up for me and we have a little alone time and if I am not too tired watch our favorite shows.
You have already two locations in Orlando, do you have any other plans for the future?
Never stop growing! We have Ciao Italia Ristorante on Westwood Blvd since 1991. It’s the landmark of International dr. My father is still hand on in the kitchen with my brother and sister managing. My goal is to eventually open more restaurants. Currently, I want to enjoy my children since they are very young but, in few years, who knows!
What advice would you give to aspiring chefs?
Stay true to good food, it will never go out of style. Be humble and take the business serious. Its hard work but it will give back.
8255 International Dr., Orlando, FL 32819