Iron Chef Mario Batali's Restaurants
Raised in Seattle, Mario's initial career path had him studying the golden age of Spanish theater at Rutgers University. Soon after graduating he took his first bit of culinary training at Le Cordon Bleu in London, from which he withdrew almost immediately due to a "lack of interest." An apprenticeship with London's legendary chef Marco Pierre White and three years of intense culinary training in the Northern Italian Village of Borgo Capanne, (population 200) gave him the essential skills and knowledge to return to his native US, anxious to plant his orange-clogged foot firmly in the behinds of the checkered tablecloth-Italian restaurant establishment.
Among his many accolades, Mario was named "Man of the Year" in the chef category by GQ Magazine in 1999. In 2002, he won the James Beard Foundation's "Best Chef: New York City" award and in 2005 the James Beard Foundation awarded Mario "Outstanding Chef of the Year." Mario is also one of the recipients of the 2001 D'Artagnan Cervena Who's Who of Food & Beverage in America, a prestigious lifetime achievement award.
Mario Batali has created a thriving restaurant empire and has established himself as a top restaurateur. Together with his partner Joe Bastianich, he operates seven New York City hotspots, including Babbo Ristorante e Enoteca and Del Posto - two wildly successful restaurants that have each been awarded three stars by Frank Bruni of the New York Times. Mario is also the chef/owner of five other enormously successful restaurants in New York City. Lupa Osteria Romana, Esca, Casa Mono, Bar Jamón, and Otto Enoteca Pizzeria.
The duo’s first west coast venture, in collaboration with Nancy Silverton is Osteria Mozza and Pizzeria Mozza in Los Angeles. Sharing the corner of Highland and Melrose Avenue, the former features a center island mozzarella bar, where fresh mozzarella is made all day, every day.
Mario and Joe recently journeyed to Las Vegas to open B&B Ristorante and Enoteca San Marco in the Venetian Resort Hotel and Casino. Their latest project is Carnevino – an Italian steak house opened in January of 2008 in the Palazzo Hotel, adjacent to the Venetian.