To me, the best part of being a chef and wine sommelier, is to use what I am most passionate about to offer the greatest pleasure for my dining guests to experience. My ability to enrich people’s lives by sharing food and drink with friends and loved ones gives me the most joy in my life.
My love for cooking began at the age of 12, cooking for my family using mom’s Better Homes and Gardens cookbooks and watching Julia Child on TV for additional cooking tips.
While in high school, I became chef saucier at the age of 17 while working in a high end steak and seafood restaurant. I’ve had the opportunity to work and apprentice alongside many great chefs, culinary Olympians, Food and Beverage directors and wine sommeliers who taught me the values and instilled the discipline needed to be successful in the Food and Beverage industry.
After graduating high school, I enlisted in the military and served in the U.S. Army for 4 years. The Army College Fund helped me enroll at The Culinary Institute of America. Upon finishing culinary school, I traveled extensively throughout the Mediterranean and Caribbean, learning to cook with flavor and flair using many different herbs and spices I discovered to enhance the quality of the dishes I prepare.
While working and honing my craft as a chef, I achieved certification from the American Culinary Federation as Chef de Cuisine. While writing dinner menus, I learned about food and wine pairings which led to my achieving status as level one wine sommelier through The Court of Masters. Years later, I became level 2 which I hold today.
Many residents of Polk County know me from Arabella’s ristorante in downtown Winter Haven, where as your wine sommelier, I strive to provide the ultimate dining experience by using my knowledge, skill and most of all, my passion for dining excellence, that gives my guests the most satisfaction.
As your Personal Chef, here is what I bring to your table: In-home tableside dinners for up to 12 people where each course is prepared from scratch in front of you and your guests. These dinners include, but are not limited to, wine dinners, family dinners, intimate romantic celebrations, brunches, cocktail parties and bar-b-cues.
Wine dinners feature all courses prepared from scratch, tableside, along with a wine chosen specifically to be paired with each course.
Brunches in your home will accommodate up to 25 people complete with a charcuterie grazing table and hot food items prepared hot and fresh from scratch in front of your guests. Champagne included!
I also offer grazing tables for weddings, private events and get togethers. I have charcuterie boards available for pick up or delivered right to your door.
I offer many other in home dining and entertainment plans to bring joy, happiness and many wonderful memories to you and yours.
So let’s all eat, drink and be merry!
Serving all of Polk County.
“Food brings people together. It’s humans most basic need and one of life's greatest pleasures. The ability to move people with food is my greatest pleasure and passion.”