La Cucina Caldesi team

Meet some of the people behind the scenes

Katie Caldesi

Katie Caldesi

Favorite Italian recipe: Roast quail on saffron and Porcini risotto

Favorite place: At her friends Livia & Nello's farm in Gracciano, Tuscany

Katie has immersed herself in Italian cookery since she met Giancarlo 14 years ago. Now she eats, drinks, speak Italian and loves to teach the skills and tricks she has learnt.

Giancarlo Caldesi

Giancarlo Caldesi

Favorite Italian recipe: His own Tuscan ragù on fresh tagliatelle

Favorite place: Florence as it is the centre of culture

Giancarlo loves to visit food markets to source fresh produce, it reminds him of his childhood when he was sent by his mother to fetch vegetables from the nearby fields.

Stefano Borella

Stefano Borella

Favorite Italian recipe: Osso Buco with risotto milanese

Favorite place: Parma

Stefano has worked in many establishments over his career including “San Lorenzo”, “Savoy Hotel”, “Churchill hotel”, “Mayfair hotel”, and presently “Caldesi” restaurants. He has a passion for patisserie and Italian food which comes from his father who was Head chef at San Lorenzo. He is a former winner of the Awards of excellence in pastry in 1997 and a member of the Academy of culinary arts. Having been involved with all of the Caldesi’s projects including Katie Caldesi’s latest cookery book the “Italian cookery course”, Stefano has a wide knowledge and genuine love of Italian food.

Matteo Berghella

Matteo Berghella

Favorite Italian recipe: any oven baked pasta cooked by my mum, even better if it's my grandmother's.

Favorite place: Florence – I've been there so many times and I just love it.

Matteo, the manager of La cucina Caldesi, has been in the restaurant trade since he was 13 years old, working at La Cucina Caldesi suits him very well as he loves food, advising customers and loves to talk!

Visiting Chefs

We are lucky enough to have a regular flow of visiting chefs, all from different walks of life and yet all with the same uniting passion for Italian cuisine, each of them bringing something different to our school.

Carolina Català-Fortuny

Carolina Català-Fortuny

Favorite Italian recipe: Risotto

Favorite place: Florence

Carolina is originally from Spain, where she worked as a teacher for many years. Cooking and food were always major passions for her and eight years ago she retrained as a chef at the world renowned “Le Cordon Bleu” cookery school. Her career as a teacher in Spain and as a chef in London have pleasantly come together at Caldesi, where she works as the coordinator of la Cucina Caldesi and teaches as one of our in-house chefs.

Ursula Ferrigno

Ursula Ferrigno

Favorite Italian recipe: freshly made papparedelle with mushrooms & truffle

Favorite place: Minori, full of childhood memories

Ursula has been teaching for twenty years up and down the country and abroad. She has written seventeen cookery books, as well as writing for numerous food magazines including Taste Italia, American Gourmet and Olive.

Ursula feels if you love something it is instinctive to share and this is why she relishes teaching so much. She finds pasta making fun to teach as well as real Italian bread with crust and crumb and flavour; and adores nothing better than teaching her students how to make an array of national and regional breads from ciabatta and focaccia to volcanic stromboli.

Valentina Harris

Valentina Harris

Favorite Italian recipe: Risotto and pasta

Favorite place: Anywhere by the sea

My food philosophy is to source the best available local, seasonal ingredients and then do as little as possible to them to create food that is authentic, honest and appealing. I enjoy teaching these principles in all my classes at La Cucina Caldesi.