Food Network icon Michael Chiarello died on Friday, September 6, after suffering an allergic reaction leading to anaphylactic shock, his restaurant group said. The celebrity chef was 61.
“We deeply mourn the loss of our beloved patriarch Michael,” his family said in a statement obtained by The Wrap. “His culinary brilliance, boundless creativity, and unwavering commitment to family were at the core of his being. He brought people together through the joy of shared meals, fostering lasting memories around the table.”
What were Michael Chiarello’s achievements?
Michael was born on January 26, 1962. He hosted shows on PBS and the Food Network, and appeared on Top Chef, Top Chef Masters and The Next Iron Chef. According to his website, he “has been acknowledged by the Culinary Institute of America, IACP, Food & Wine Magazine, and many more for his success as both a Chef and restaurant professional. He has developed over 10 restaurants, including his hugely popular and critically acclaimed Bottega Restaurant in Yountville, California (Napa Valley); his new Spanish restaurant Coqueta on Pier 5 in San Francisco which earned a glowing 3.5 star review from the San Francisco Chronicle and was a finalist in the 2013 James Beard awards for Best New Restaurant; and his first in California, Tra Vigne, of which he was executive chef/partner until 2000.”
“Named Esquire magazine’s “Chef of the Year” for 2013, Chiarello made his mark by combining his Southern Italian roots with the distinctive hallmarks of Napa Valley living. From his earliest childhood experiences – created around his mother’s California kitchen with his extended Italian family of butchers, cheesemakers and ranchers – Michael Chiarello dreamed of becoming a chef one day. Decades later, he has realized his dream, and much more.He is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park, NY,” the website adds.
What did the Gruppo Chiarello restaurant group say?
Michael died at the Queen of the Valley Medical Center in Napa, California, surrounded by family and friends, New York Post reported. The Gruppo Chiarello restaurant group said in a statement after his death, “Chef Michael Chiarello’s passion for food and life will forever be etched in our kitchens and our hearts. While we mourn Michael’s passing, we also celebrate his legacy that continues with his restaurants, Bottega, Coqueta (San Francisco and Napa Valley), and Ottimo.”
Michael wrote several books, including Bottega: Bold Italian Flavors from the Heart of California’s Wine Country, At Home with Michael Chiarello: Easy Entertaining, and Michael Chiarello’s Casual Cooking.
Two former servers accused Michael of sexual harassment in 2016. However, a rep called the allegations unfounded, and Michael settled the lawsuit out of court in 2017.