According to Eater.com less than 30% of restaurants across Europe including Italy, the UK and Ireland employ female chefs in their kitchens.
Meet Chiara Pavan from Verona who is looking to change that trend.
“I dream of a future in which there will no longer be such gender distinctions – especially in the kitchen” Chiara sincerely tells us.
The young female Italian Chef heads up the Michelin starred restaurant Venissa in Mazzorbo, Veneto and was just nominated for The Best Female Italian Chef in Europe 2019 category at The Love Italian Life 2019 Awards Ceremony taking place in Dublin later this year.
Last year L’Espresso which was founded in 1978 and is the most respected annual restaurant guide in Italy awarded Chiara the best chef of the year prize.
Chiara, born in 1985 went on to study philosophy at the University of Pisa. At the age of 20 she began working in the kitchen then after graduating she made it a lifestyle choice by beginning her culinary studies at ALMA. This is the world renowned International School of Italian Cuisine in Parma founded by Gultiero Marchesi who is regarded as one of the greatest Italian chefs in history.
The young chef went on work in some of the most respected kitchens in Italy including two years at Zum Löwen Tesimo in Alto Adige and then as a sous chef at the two Michelin starred Da Caino in Tuscany. The Tuscan restaurant is led by Valeria Piccini who is another female powerhouse in Italian fine dining since taking over the kitchen in the 1980s.
Then in 2016 the owner of Venissa Matteo Bisol approached Chiara where she joined as an executive chef. The cuisine of Pavan is dominated by the rich choice of natural ingredients located in the town of Mazzorbo where the restaurant is based with a rich farming history. Just beside the town is Sant’Erasmo known as “the vegetable garden of Venice”.
From fresh pumpkin to sunflower seeds, carrots, wild fruits, porcini mushrooms and black truffles – it is a food playground for Chiara to source her recipes from. Referred to as the ‘Venetian Lagoon’ – a long wooden bridge connects the island of Burano and Mazzorbo making it a magical place that is so close to frenetic Venice but is ultimately so refreshingly different because of the peaceful ambience it embodies.
By using artisan products from local farmers and producers Chiara has crafted her own identity by fusing her own unique style, energy, and passion into her innovative dishes at Venissa.
Here is the exclusive interview between Chiara and The Love Italian Life Awards: