Chef/Culinary Personality/Restaurateur/Cookbook Author
Chef Fabio Viviani has possessed a passion for food since his childhood growing up in Florence, Italy. At age 11, Viviani worked nights at a local bakery (since he was too young to officially join the staff) and during his teenage years, held several positions in the restaurant industry, even serving under the mentorship of Simone Mugnaini, an iconic figure in the Italian restaurant industry.
Between his training in Italian and Mediterranean cuisine at IPSSAR Saffi and working with culinary luminaries such as Alessandro Panzani and Saverio Carmagini, Viviani owned and operated five restaurants in Florence, a farm house, and two nightclubs by the time he was 27. Although a well-respected businessman in Italy, he was ready for a change and in 2005, Viviani moved to Ventura County, CA, where he opened Café Firenze in Hollywood.
Teaming up with one of Chicago’s most innovative restaurant consulting groups, Dine|Amic, Viviani went on to open Siena Tavern in Chicago in 2013, receiving accolades from Michigan Avenue and Chicago Tribune, to name a few. 2014 saw the debut of both Mercato by Fabio Viviani, a quick-service Italian concept with branches in Chicago and San Diego, and Fabio Viviani Wine Collection featuring wines from his two wineries in California. In 2015, Viviani continued to make a name for himself in Chicago by opening Bar Siena and also Prime and Provisions, a steakhouse. The following year, Viviani expanded beyond Chicago to open Osteria by Fabio Viviani at the LAX Delta Terminal and several other Mercato by Fabio locations in Detroit, Tempe, Phoenix, Cleveland, and Benton Harbor. Moreover, he purchased a lobster fishing company in Maine to launch a home seafood delivery service called Lobster by Fabio in late 2016. Early next year, 2017, Viviani will open Portico by Fabio Viviani in the Del Lago Resort & Casino in Tyre, New York.
Perhaps best known for his television debut on Bravo’s hit reality series Top Chef- earning the “Fan Favorite” title – his on-screen appearances have propelled him to become one of the fastest growing household names in the country.
In addition to competing in Bravo’s Top Chef All Stars and starring in the spinoff, Life After Top Chef, Viviani has appeared as a recurring guest on television shows such as Good Morning America, The Rachael Ray Show, The Talk, Hallmark Home & Family, The Chew, Good Day LA, Access Hollywood, and countless Food Network Shows such as Cutthroat Kitchen: All-Star Tournament, which he won.
Off-screen, Viviani is a regular headliner at global food events and festivals. He has his own lines of cookware and culinary gadgets, and has been a proud spokesman for international brands such as Arnold Premium Breads, Bialetti Cookware, Bertolli, and Legends of Europe. He has authored three successful cookbooks: Café Firenze Cookbook, New York Times Best-Seller Fabio’s Italian Kitchen and Fabio’s American Home Kitchen and is planning to release his fourth cookbook, 30-Minute Italian, in Spring 2017.
Among Viviani’s other passions, he also has a knack for business. A prolific tech investor and business speaker, not only has he delivered over 300 keynotes in the past 7 years, but he has also featured at several Fortune 500 companies’ corporate functions to share expertise in branding, social media, and marketing.
Most recently, Viviani launched his Know-How Leadership Academy, an online educational platform with guides and courses for small businesses and entrepreneurs. Providing business tools and courses for free, Viviani hopes to educate talent and provide the necessary tools for success.