Our masters of Culinary Arts

Some information about our teachers: their work experience, their qualifications and publications.

Cristina Blasi and Gabriella Mari are co-founders and directors of the School of Culinary Arts Cordon Bleu Florence, and have been the two pillars of the school since the very beginning.

They became qualified teachers at Cordon Bleu Rome, are members of the "Commanderie des Cordons Bleus de France" as well as sommeliers and expert tasters of extra virgin olive oil. 

Two great teachers: overflowing with enthusiasm, Cristina, who will guide you along a learning journey you never thought possible. Gabriella, a safe harbour, who will enhance your learning experience in every single lesson. 
Cristina Blasi

Cristina Blasi

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A dynamic and enthusiastic teacher, though she loves Tuscan cooking, Cristina is open to the novelties of the cooking world. As she likes to keep up with the latest trends on the cooking front, Cristina is a keen follower of the culinary arts and innovative techniques. What is more, Cristina is the one and only expert in pastry arts and in the visual aspects of food presentation (decoration and the use of special food plating utensils)
A perfect teacher seeking new culinary challenges and experiences.
Gabriella Mari

Gabriella Mari

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A Florentine through and through. Though incredibly fond of fine Italian cuisine for its taste more than its visual presentation, Gabriella is extremely curious and interested in the historical, cultural and traditional aspects of gastronomy.
She is specialized in traditional dishes, and meat, pasta and bread making are her main areas of culinary expertise. She is able to convey her passion for the history of cooking, for eating well, and also for the scientific aspect of food. She is responsible for the cooking programmes for foreigners.
A perfect teacher, passionate about her work, and always supportive of her students.      
Emilia Onesti

Emilia Onesti

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Emilia Onesti was born in Novara in 1966. At the age of two she moved to Florence with her parents - her father, who was from Novara but with parents from Emilia Romagna, and her mother, who was from Florence but with parents from Mantova.

After years of helping her maternal grandmother in the preparation of homemade pasta, her passion for cooking became evident in 1983, with the first edition of the magazine Grand Gourmet. The study of cooking remained Emelia's second priority during her classical high school education and her studies in Architecture, and during this period she used her culinary skills to prepare meals and parties for private clients. After graduating in 1992, her culinary interests led her to manage the restaurant of a tennis club on the outskirts of Florence. She worked there for two summer seasons (1993 and 1994) together with Fabio Onesti (her brother, and sommelier), Livia Braini and later also Cristina Castelli.

Her interests turned mainly to Middle Eastern cuisine, a passion born in the 1990s with her first of three trips to Turkey. For Emilia, every Middle Eastern holiday was simply an opportunity to study the region's gastronomy - from Maghreb to Egypt and Syria.

During her stay in Paris in 1996, Emilia had the opportunity to study French and International cuisine.

Since 1997, she has collaborated with Cristina Blasi and Gabriella Mari at their Scuola di Arte Culinaria Cordon Bleu Florence, initialy as a secretary and later as a teaching assistant. From this collaboration several new courses were created: Cucina del Mediterraneo (1998), Aperitivo e Antipasti (2000) and Primi Piatti Regionali (2001). Together with Cristina and Gabriella, Emilia has also worked on the publication of the books "Enciclopedia della cucina mediterranea" (Mondadori, Milano 2004), "La pasta fatta in casa" (BrioLibri, Firenze 2004) and "Pasta Italia" (McRae Books, Firenze 2005).

Her cooking studies have expanded into other areas, such as the research of new techniques for the enrichment of gastronomic traditions in Italy and other countries. Her studies have been enhanced thanks to her unending passion for cookbooks that she has been collecting over the years from every corner of the world. Alongside her collaboration with Cristina and Gabriella, she has published the book Gelato (BrioLibri, Firenze 2007) together with Carla Bardi, and is working as home economist for a book on Italian cuisine (to be her next publication). In addition, together with Luigi Corbacella, Emelia has been managing a website about cooking since 2007.
Claudio Nardello

Claudio Nardello

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Claudio has always been a chef - as a teenager he would cook for his friends the fish and seafood caught together - and he has not stopped ever since!

After working for a time in the software and textile industries, in 2000 he decided to turn his passion for cooking into a career. In 2001 he worked as a personal chef in Prato where he prepared nice meals in his clients' homes. In 2003, he moved north and worked in the difficult and demanding city of Milan, where he found quite a following. There he ran the restaurant "Superstudio", owned by photographer Fabrizio Ferri, and received critical acclaim from the Milanese. In 2005, he moved back to Tuscany's capital, Florence, where he became the Executive Chef at "La Bacca Rossa". This small, charming restaurant is in the center of Florence, and it's cooking focuses on fresh fish and sea food. In 2007 the restaurant was declared "Best New Restaurant Of The Year", and mentioned in many Florence restaurant guides as a top 10 dining spot.

In the summer of 2008 Claudio decided to go back to his favourite job as a private chef. He prefers small groups and likes to take care of his guests in the most special way, personally selecting each dish. He promotes himself under the name of "The Sea At Your Home" given to him by a journalist from the aromas of the sea in his cooking. Since the end of 2008 he has also started a collaboration with the Scuola di Arte Culinaria Cordon Bleu in Florence, teaching cooking at a professional level to students of the Professional Program. Claudio perfectly combines his passion for cooking with the most advanced cooking techniques.

From the beginning of 2010 until July 2012, Claudio was Executive Chef of Fellini. Claudio managed the restaurant's opening, and designed its entire menu and cuisine.

Since July 2012, he has been Executive Chef at the restaurant Magnificenza Le Pavoniere. Fish in abundance, that goes without saying!
Palmiro Bruschi

Palmiro Bruschi

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Palmiro Bruschi was born in Sansepolcro on August 31 1967 and is married with three children. He and his wife, Pina, are fully qualified in this sector of the catering business and ensure that the ice cream products are made with both skill and quality. Since the beginning, Palmiro Bruschi has been an assistant to the ice cream Grand Masters in "Arte Dolce" in Rimini and "C.a.s.t. alimenti" in Brescia Professional Center, where he obtained his Diploma of Merit. In February 1994 he achieved the title of No.1 Italian Champion Ice Cream Maker and in March 1997 he became a Member of the Italian Ice Cream Academy. Furthermore, he has contributed to the opening of numerous ice-cream parlours not only in Italy but also abroad and is a qualified teacher for the production of homemade ice cream. He has also appeared on many Italian T.V. programmes: Uno Mattina, Linea Verde, Festa di Classe, Gelato al Limone, La Vecchia Fattoria, Trenta Ore per la Vita, l'Italia in Diretta, Cucinone, La prova del Cuoco and on Gambero Rosso and Alice...

Articles have been written about him and his expertise in: Gambero Rosso, Topolino, Il Sole 24 Ore, Auto d'Epoca, Sale e Pepe, Buon Appetito, Gelato Artigianale, Pasticceria Internazionale, Madia, Gola, Dolce e Salato etc.. Italy Daily (International Herald Tribune) and so on. With his well-known "CARRETTINO" he has taken part in a variety of important events "Giro d'Italia", the "Mille Miglia", the "Transalpinica", the "Salone del Gusto" in Turin, the "Rally of Bianchine", Eurochocolate in Perugia in Rimini, in Switzerland and in the Opening of the Gateway of the Republic of San Marino, etc.. He also worked on the "Costa Classica" Cruises.

A very important moment for Palmiro Bruschi was the invitation to take part in the Renaissance Banquet, as representative of the Art of Italian Ice Cream, at the Festival "Italy in Japan 2001" held in the Imperial Hotel Tokyo, with the presence of members of the Japanese Imperial family. Since then he has assisted in "BELLA ITALIA" exhibitions in Melbourne, Nice, Hong Kong and Dubai. In 2010 he begins a cooperation with industrie IFi in the project "AFFRESCO" and with "BREAK AND GO".
Vito Mollica

Vito Mollica

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Was born in Avigliano in 1971
* Centro Di Formazione Professionale, Casargo, Italy
Obtained the Certificate as Commis De Cuisine issued by the
Professional Training Institute
* Associazione Sommelier Italiana
Obtained the certificate of 1st degree and 2nd degree Course as
* Etoile Institute, Venice, Italy
Food Cost Course
* R.E.C. Membership to the Italian Registry of the Commercial Shopkeepers

Sept '07 (pre-opening) - present : Four Seasons Hotel Firenze, Italy (Executive Chef)
Oct '00 ( pre-opening) - Aug '07 : Four Seasons Hotel Prague (Executive Chef)
Sep '99 - Oct '00 : Four Seasons Hotel Milano, Italy (Sous Chef De Cuisine)
Mar '98 - Aug '99 : Four Seasons Hotel Milano, Italy (Junior Sous Chef)
Nov '96 - Feb '98 : Four Seasons Hotel Milano, Italy (Chef De Partie)
Nov '95 - Oct '96 : Cafe Royal - Grillroom (1 Star Michelin), London, (Demi Chef De Partie)
Aug '94 - Oct '95 : Jolly Hotel Carlton, Caruso Restaurant, Amsterdam (Chef de Cuisine)
Jan '93 - Jul '94 : Jolly Hotel Plaza, Genova, Italy (Sous Chef)
Oct '91 - Dec '92 : Jolly Hotel Milanofiori, Milano, Italy (Chef De Partie)
Jul '91 - Sep '91 : Relais Des Alpes, Madonna Di Camiglio, Italy (Chef de Partie)
May '89 - Jun '91 : "Mauro" Restaurant, Milano, Italy (Chef De Partie)
Feb '89 - May '89 : Gama Hotel, Milano, Italy (Commis De Cuisine)
Oct '88 - May '89 : Don Antonio's Restaurant, Manchester, England (Commis De Cuisine)
Jun '88 - May '89 : Est Est Est Restaurant, Knutsford, England (Commis De Cuisine)
Oct '87 - May '88 : Gama Hotel, Milan, Italy (Apprentice)
Jun '87 - Oct '87 : "Principe Di Piemonte, Viareggio, Italy (Apprentice)

October 2007 : Restaurant "Fat Duck" Bray, UK (*** Michelin Stars)
March 2003 : Restaurant "French Laundry" Yountville, Napa Valley, California (*** Michelin Stars)
October 2002 : Restaurant" Kong Hans Kaelder" Copenhagen, Denmark (* Michelin Star)
September 2000: Restaurant "El Bulli", Cala Motjion, Spain (*** Michelin Stars)
15th to 30th July'98 : Les Elysees du Vernet, Hotel Vernet, Paris, France (** Michelin Stars)
1st to 15th July '98 : Le Jardin, Hotel Royal Monceau, Paris, France (* Michelin Star)
Sep '96 - Nov '96 : "L'Albereta Of Gualtiero Marchesi. Erbusco, Italy (*** Michelin Stars)
Feb '96 - May '96 : "Marco Pierre White" Restaurant, London, England (*** Michelin Stars)

Achievements and Awards
Comune di Firenze 2012: Premio "il Porcellino" della citta' di Firenze
Guida dell' Espresso Italia 2013: Premio Pommery " Il miglior piatto dell'Anno"
Guida Michelin Italia 2012: premia il Ristorante Il Palagio con 1 Stella
Guida dell'Espresso 2012: premia il ristorante Il Palagio con 2 Cappelli 16,5/20
Premio Arco 2010: Premiato dal Comune di Avigliano Regione Basilicata
Ampolla d'oro 2010: premiato dall'Enoteca Italiana di Siena
Conde' Nast 2009, Ristorante Il Palagio Hot table List
Gallivanter's Guide 2007: Chef's Editor's choice awards
Distintivo d'oro della Camera di Commercio Italo/Ceca 2007
Zagat guide 2003/04/05/06/07: Allegro Restaurant # 1 Restaurant in Prague
Hotels Magazine 2005:Restaurant Allegro: The 10 world's Best hotel dining rooms
Grand Restaurant guide 2005/06/07: Restaurant Allegro: # 1 Restaurant in Prague
Der Feinsmecker Magazine 2002/03/04/05/06: Allegro Restaurant Best restaurant in Prague
Conde' Nast 2002, Allegro restaurant Hot table List
Czech Hotels &Restaurants: Best Hotel Restaurant 2002/03/04/05/06
Marco Stabile

Marco Stabile

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Marco Stabile born in 1973 in Pontedera, Tuscany, he has quickly risen to prominence in Italy.

He developed his skills of subtle invention whilst working in, and contributing to, some of Italy's finest kitchens, including the famed "Baghino" in Prato, "Il Salotto del Chianti", the Antinori-owned "Osteria di Passignano", the Beringer Blass-managed "Cavaliere del Castello di Gabbiano", "Il Paese dei Campanelli" and "Il Chiasso dei Portici" to name a few.

His final stepping stone before opening Ora d'Aria, where he is both resident head chef and co-owner, remains his work at "Arnolfo" in Colle Val d'Elsa (Michelin **) as the right hand man to the incomparable Gaetano Trovato.

Marco is an occasional and warmly welcomed teacher at some of the Italy's most celebrated culinary schools, such as those in Jesi, Montecatini Terme and "Academia del Gusto" in Arezzo. He also remains a committed supporter of, and collaborates with, the prestigious group "Les Jeunes Restaurateurs d'Europe".

The talented work of chef Stabile over these last few years in Florence did not go unnoticed abroad either: the last accolade being his prestigious and very recent appointment by a group of Italian investors/entrepreneurs as the sole non-resident Executive Chef of "Toscana Divino"; a very ambitious and innovative, new "restaurant-cum-fashion showroom" concept (all under one roof) in Miami- hopefully, the first in a series - to promote the Italian lifestyle in general and, more in particular, the "excellence" of Tuscany in and across the United States in years to come.
Duccio Pistolesi

Duccio Pistolesi

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I am a chef and since 2001 I've been working in the restaurant sector. I finished my studies at the hotel management school in Florence IPSAR Buontalenti in 2005. While I was at school I did an internship in the restaurant Tenda Rossa, a 2 ** Michelin star restaurant (November 2002 until April 2003), and another one in the Spring of 2004 at the Golf Club Ugolino. After the Diploma I worked at Osteria di Passignano, where I gained a great deal of experience. After I decided to increase my experience in various International businesses around the world.

My passion for cooking is based on making the guests happy, and making simple but good food where all my passion and professionalism is visible.

My style of cooking is based on the history of the area where I was born and on the Italian fine tasting of food. I am able to adjust to the needs of the structure and the indications of the direction and I do everything the chef and the general manager want for their restaurant, and I'm always ready to bring my experience and my ideas, if required, to increase the business and the quality of the food.
Guido Mori

Guido Mori

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He was born in Florence on April 1st 1978

He graduated in Chemistry at Università degli studi of Florence. He has worked in the glass-ceramic industry, in the water technology and in the food chemistry.

He has got the diploma for Basic General Cooking and Advanced International Cooking at Scuola di Arte Culinaria Cordon Bleu of Florence. He teaches scientific cooking and food chemistry.

He is a teacher of the OpenLab project at Università degli studi of Florence.
Silvia Martinez

Silvia Martinez

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She is a specialised biologist in health and nutrition security 
High School Diploma (scientific branch)
Degree in Biological Science
Two-year Master's Degree  Alimentazione Clinica e Applicata. Specializzation in Nutrition. Syntonie Florence 2011
Organizzation and food safety management (HACCP) in food companies (2002 to present)
Consulenza per l'organizzazione e l'attuazione di piani di autocontrollo presso svariate imprese private nel settore alimentare (sia artigianali che industriali) (2002 ad oggi)
Collaborazione con il Centro Servizi Tecnici Soluzione S.r.l. di Firenze per valutazione di rischi per salute e sicurezza sul lavoro (D.Lgs 81/08) in aziende operanti diversi settori; consulenze in campo biologico, in particolare per autocontrollo igienico sanitario (metodologie HACCP) (2002 ad 2009)
Collaborazione con Confesercenti Versilia per valutazione di rischi per salute e sicurezza sul lavoro e consulenze in particolare per autocontrollo igienico sanitario (metodologie HACCP) (2002 ad 2008)
Collaborazione con CNA di Pistoia per autocontrollo igienico sanitario (metodologie HACCP) (2006 ad oggi)
Iscrizione all'Ordine Nazionale dei biologi n° 053195 sez. A
Partecipazione a convegni, congressi e seminari relativi ad autocontrollo, HACCP, controllo di qualità, Eco Audit (1999 ad oggi)
Annamaria Cacioli

Annamaria Cacioli

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Annamaria Cacioli was born in 1969. She attended the faculty of Political Sciences (International Relationship) at the University of Florence where she graduated in 1994.

From March 2013 she has been a professional A.I.C.I (Italian Cooking Teachers Association) cooking teacher.

Main work experience:
Since 2008 she has been teaching at the International School"Lorenzo de Medici", and she teaches "Current trends in Italian Cuisine" and "Food of Italy"
Since 2009 she has been a cooking teacher at the professional cooking school "Scuola di arte culinaria Cordon Bleu" where she teaches pastry, chocolate, pizza, cooking techniques and Italian cuisine.
Since October 2013 she has been teaching "Tools and technology in the kitchen", which is part of the International Degree course held at "Scuola di Arte Culinaria Cordon Bleu".
Marco Ottaviano

Marco Ottaviano

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Marco Ottaviano was born in 1951 in Rome where he graduated in Bilogical Science and where he works as a researcher at the National Institute of Health.
He has gained a lot of experience in multinational companies in the pharmaceutical and medical equipment fields. In 1994 he arrived in Florence named in the SMA (Segnalamento Marittimo Aereo).

After this experience, with other partners he founded a company for the production and marketing of high-tech equipment for the rehabilitation sector. But the old passion for gelato, which began as a child when he came into contact with the grandfather's bar gelateria, could no longer wait.
After two years devoted to the study of modern production of artisan gelato, he opened, with his wife Cinzia, a gelato shop in the historic center of Florence "Il Gelato Gourmet ".
Passion and an obsessive search of ingredients are the strength of his activity. In a short time his shop was appreciated as one of the best gelato shops in Florence.

Today it is the first ice cream shop in Florence in the ranking of Tripadvisor, and is inserted from the blog Dissapore among the 100 best artisan gelato shops in Italy.

Marco Ottaviano is often quoted in international blogs for his top quality gelato.

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