I have been an enthusiastic reader since childhood. My nightstand is piled high with novels and memoirs, and I love escaping into new worlds through the pages of a book. About ten years ago, I decided to try my hand at composing a story myself, and I wrote our first Old St. Nick children’s book. Writing those stories each year has become one of my favorite professional endeavors, and I’m flattered and humbled that the Old St. Nick books have found their way onto so many of your shelves.

VIETRI celebrates its fortieth anniversary this year, and the milestone has prompted me to reflect on the adventures, challenges, triumphs, and learning experiences of the past four decades. It has been such a wild and wonderful ride, and a couple of years ago, I started to feel the pull to share more of my journey. My career has been so full and rich, and I am so grateful that it has allowed me to experience another country and culture to the extent to which I’ve been able to learn about and love Italy. I wanted to pay tribute to what has made Italy so special to me– its beauty, its cuisine, its style, and most importantly, its people. And so, I decided to recount my memories of the past forty years through the lens of relationships and food– and Italy on a Plate, my memoir and cookbook, was born. 

A labor of love, this book took nearly two years to write, edit, and publish. It is a collection of stories about the dear friends who have made Italy such a special place for me. I share how I met them, my favorite memories with them, and the lessons they have taught me. These friends have kindly shared their favorite recipes, and I can attest to the fact that all are sensational. I had the best time writing this book, laughing with these featured friends about our various escapades and antics, and learning how to prepare these dishes. Just like VIETRI, this book was an adventure, and I hope you will enjoy reading it and cooking from it as much as I enjoyed creating it. 

Italy on a Plate is available for preorder now. Sign up here to ensure you get a copy first!