The Apprentice's Journey

Born into a large Italian family food was a focus as Edward grew up. All things family and gatherings involved around a simple thing called food. The food that was cooked with love and care had the house full of aromas that made on hungry always. Edward knew his calling but not the journey that awaited him.

Chef Ed's History

Born into a large Italian family, food was a focus as Edward grew up.

All things family and gatherings involved around a simple thing called food. The food that was cooked with love, and care had the house full of aromas that made us hungry always.

Edward knew no matter where he would eat around the world, no matter what kitchen he was cooking in preparing for a high-level competition, exclusive wine dinner or large buffet his memories and roots would go to his moms and nonnas kitchen and the food he grew up on.

Edward went to the first culinary trade of its kind and then continued his studies in Germany, Italy and France. His first job in a kitchen was a pizzeria. But not just any pizzeria, the famous Frank Pepe’s apizza on Wooster Street in New Haven.

His apprenticeship would take him to various restaurants, bakeries and hotels. His career really launched when he started working for hotel and catering giant in Britain TrustHouse Forte.

He initiated and led major changes and rebuild at the famed Westchester Country Club in New York. His leadership and “Culinary Pride Program” made Westchester the first private club to be recognized for its restaurants, events and culinary program globally as well as in the USA.

Edward spent much time traveling all over the world and learning his craft which would prepare him for taking the Certified Master Chef Exam at the Culinary Institute of America a ten-day exam with a 65% failure rate. He passed the ten-day exam and never looked back. Edward is a past National President for the American Culinary Federation, World Vice President for the Chefs and Cooks Societies. He has received recognitions and awards around the globe for his contribution to the industry and leadership. Upon his numerous awards and accolades he recently won the American Culinary Federations 2021 Innovation award and the 2021 Golf Kitchen’s Most Outstanding Chef for private clubs.

Edward became ACF National USA Culinary Team manager and team chef from 2000 -2008 bringing home numerous gold medals and awards. The highlight was winning the World Hot Food Championship in 2004 defeating 32 other nations and taking third overall in the world. He has won over 36 gold medals in competitions including winning one gold medal in every category including pastry.

He was invited to Macau as the guest chef for a week for his up close and personal wine dinner to a American BBQ for the Hong Kong and American embassy event.

Key Career Capstones

Chef and Vice President
Le Cordon Bleu North America

Gold Medal and World
Championship Culinary Olympics
Germany
2004

Passing the
Master Chefs Exam

First Book Published
Five more to Follow

Executive Chef at
Westchester Country Club

First American Chef to give
keynote at Chinas Chef Festival
and winning gold medal in Beijing.

Connect

Follow me to stay in the loop on what’s new with Chef Leonard