Napa Stories: Profiles, Reflections, and Recipes from the Napa Valley

by Michael Chiarello

ISBN-10: 1584791160
ISBN-13: 9781584791164
Publication Date: September, 2001
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Publishers Information

About Napa Stories: Profiles, Reflections, and Recipes from the Napa Valley

Publisher Web Link:

The story of Napa Valley winemaking is the story of its people--their triumphs and failures, their passion and commitment, and their ongoing struggle to produce world-class wines. In Michael Chiarello’s stories and profiles, we meet the people who make the wine that gives the Napa Valley its singular reputation. As Chiarello points out, the best wines are more than just grapes, soil, and weather; there is a hint of the winemaker’s character in them. By knowing the stories of the winemakers, we can taste the history and effort that has shaped every glass. Napa Stories profiles some of the most prominent people in the valley--Mondavi, Trefethen, and Duckhorn--as well as some essential Napa characters whose names rarely reach the public. These personal stories reflect the modern history of Napa from the early contributions of André Tchelistcheff, the influential wine consultant, to the current achievements of such winemaking stars as Larry Turley and Tony Soter. More than 150 stunning photographs capture the visual splendor of this remarkable place and highlight its cultural and culinary contributions.

Author Information

About Michael Chiarello

Author Web Link:

Michael Chiarello is an awardwinning chef, Emmywinning Food Network host, tastemaker behind the NapaStyle retail company, highly rated vintner, and noted cookbook author. Throughout his career, Michael has combined his Southern Italian roots with Napa Valley living to pioneer culinary and lifestyle trends. Michael’s ongoing endeavors inspire friends and family to gather around the table and create meaningful traditions in their own lives. Michael incorporates his personal passion for seasonal, sustainable living, into all that he does. From the growers that he supports as chef and owner of Bottega Napa Valley and his product designs for NapaStyle, to his earthfriendly farming practices for his vineyards and the storylines for his Emmywinning Food Network show, Michael shares his unique perspective on what comprises good food and healthy living in an oldworld lifestyle. Download Bio as pdf (includes Michaels timeline history).

The Story

Born in 1962 and raised in the central California community of Turlock, Michael developed his passion for growing, harvesting and cooking from his Italian immigrant mother, who taught Michael the Calabrian traditions of food and family. He followed his dream of becoming a worldclass chef, apprenticing in restaurants at age 14 and eventually graduating from The Culinary Institute of America (Hyde Park, NY) in 1982. After attending the Florida International University’s School of Hospitality and Tourism Management, Michael began his professional career by opening Toby’s restaurant, in Miami, Florida. The restaurant won immediate acclaim and brought Michael rapid success, including being named Chef of the Year by Food & Wine magazine in 1985. In 1986 he was lured back to his Californian roots to design and open Tra Vigne Restaurant in the Napa Valley, where Michael developed an avid following for his unique style of Italianinfluenced wine country cooking and entertaining. He acted as Executive Chef/partner for Tra Vigne and seven other restaurants until 2000, when he left to create NapaStyle, Chiarello Family Vineyards, and focus on his television career. In 2008, Michael officially stepped back into his clogs and chef’s jacket with the opening of his Bottega Napa Valley restaurant, which was quickly named to the Top 100 Bay Area Restaurants (San Francisco Chronicle) and won a critical nod from the Wine Spectator for its wine, list all within 6 months of opening. Bottega is located within the historical Vintage Estates property, which is developed in a 140 year old winery and estate, originally the Groezinger Family Estate. In Summer of 2009, he appears in a new spinoff of the # 1 food show on cable, Bravo’s Top Chef Masters, where he competes against 23 other renowned chefs in an attempt to win $100,000 for charity. (

Cookbooks by Michael Chiarello

Recipe Index

Recipe index coming soon.