Show 302, December 15, 2018: Valentino Ristorante, Santa Monica

Valentino Santa MonicaAfter an incredible 46-year run Piero Selvaggio’s trendsetting Valentino Ristorante will serve its last dinner on New Year’s Eve.

Valentino is one of the pioneers of modern Italian food in Los Angeles. Valentino also is properly credited with introducing premium Italian wines as part of a deep cellar along with polished, unfussy wine service.

Many talented chefs with very successful restaurants of their own polished their skills earlier in their careers in the Valentino kitchen. This includes James Beard Award-winning Chef Luciano Pellegrini, Angelo Auriana (Factory Kitchen) and Steve Samson (Rossoblu and Sotto.)

Piero launches a new restaurant on the Bay (Mariner’s Mile) in Newport Beach (Louie’s) early in the New Year with El Cholo Proprietor Ron Salisbury. We’ll report on it.

Our own West Coast Prime Meats Meathead, Terry Hanks, along with Restaurateur Piero Selvaggio share some engaging memories.


Show 293, October 6, 2018: Restaurateur Piero Selvaggio of Santa Monica’s Valentino, Planeta wines of Sicily

Piero Salvaggio of Valentino Santa MonicaPiero Selvaggio of Valentino, Santa Monica fame is one of the pioneers of Italian fine-dining in Los Angeles. He also has been one of the visionaries introducing the premium wines of Sicily to the United States. Piero joins us to talk about the noble Nero d’Avola grape grown in Sicily and Sicily’s Planeta wines.

“We travelled through Sicily as on a great wine continent, establishing our estates in five different areas from west to east, seeking our interpretation of them through research into indigenous varieties, including those by now forgotten, and into the suitability of the different terroirs to welcome international varieties as well. We planned to eventually build around each territory a comprehensive system of experience composed of hospitality, cooking, nature and culture. On these elements the history of our company has always been based. This instinct for the future, together with our curiosity to see the world and compare ourselves with it, has guided our choices.”

After an incredible run of 46 years Piero will be closing Valentino this year after celebrating New Year’s Eve. In early 2019 he will be launching Louie’s on the waterfront in Newport Beach. It’s an upscale Italian steakhouse in tribute to Olympian Louis Zamperini. We’ll keep you posted…