It was a pleasant sunny beautiful Sunday when I found myself strolling down Ravenna Avenue in North of Seattle.
As I was absorbing the warmth of the winter sun, I walked across a small Italian negozio by the name of daPino; I approached the windows and elbowed away the dust to get a glimpse of the Italian world that was inside.
Dangling from the ceiling were Chillis, Wine Bottles sat on the shelves, cheezes and cured meats neatly stacked along the cooler front side and 4 tables laid across the room with Italian styled covers on top of each.
I made a quick maneuver and went around when I found a gentle man speeding out the negozio towards his car; I yelled, in an attempt to alarm him that what I was about to say was very important “Hey, Excuse me! Is this little restaurant open?” “Kind of” he replied “I was here to pick up some sausages”
I looked behind when I eyed another gentleman inside the restaurant and waived “Can I come in?”
“Hi, my name is Sherif and I am very interested to know about your business”
“Would you like a caffee?” He asked.
And this was the start of a very interesting Italian story of Uno Chef Molto Gentile.
daPino came to America in 1972 and started working in the restaurant business where he opened a few ones of his own then worked with SettaBello in Capitol Hill.
After 17 years, he moved back to Italy in 1989 and spent one year in Calabria and 11 years in Lake Como where he perfected his Italian cooking skills, salami making trade, dry cured meats and fresh sausages.
In 2001 he moved back to Seattle, Washington and started working for an Apartment management company when he was making sausages on the side and was introducing them to some Italian Restaurants when some of them bought from him.
In 2004 he opened up his own restaurant in Rainer Valley then moved to Ravenna where he’s been since 2009.