CHEF & STAFF
CHEF & OWNER
This is Chef Giovanni Rocchio, owner of Valentino, Fort Lauderdale, Florida. His father, Tony, opened the original Valentino in a near-by South Florida suburb in 1974 and it was clearly evident young Giovanni was interested in food service. He learned basic culinary skills and the dexterity necessary to work efficiently. He understood the importance of using fresh, high quality ingredients, providing consistent recipes and fine service with respectful hospitality, all vital elements of a luxurious restaurant operation. Giovanni took pride in challenging himself, increasing his knowledge to reach higher levels of cooking. He traveled, worked and trained at some of the finest restaurants in New York and Italy.
In 2006, Giovanni returned to Florida to open a new Valentino restaurant near downtown Fort Lauderdale. The restaurant became a steady success, though in a nondescript location, it was the best kept secret of local foodies. Six years later, longing for more space including a full service bar, Chef Giovanni with companion, Elke Quintana, and his able team built the ALL NEW Valentino that today delivers a culinary essential to South Florida dining.
CHEF DE CUISINE
Valentino Cucina Italiana, the premier destination for Innovative Cuisine with a Modern Italian Twist, is pleased to announce that it has hired Jimmy Everett as Chef de Cuisine. In his new role, Everett will be working closely with Giovanni Rocchio, Chef and Owner of Valentino Cucina Italiana and will handle the day-to-day operations of the restaurant including logistics, staffing, ordering and new culinary projects. His extensive experience in the restaurant industry has made him a perfect choice for Chef de Cuisine of Valentino Cucina Italiana. Jimmy will continue to provide Valentino's guests with the unparalleled food and service they have come to expect from our restaurant.
Everett, originally from South Florida, started his culinary career at the age of fifteen at Atlantis Country Club in Lake Worth, Florida. He attended the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York and graduated in 2005 with an Associate Degree in Culinary Arts. During his studies at the Culinary Institute of America, Everett accepted an internship at American Seasons in Nantucket, Massachusetts where he was introduced to fine dining and discovered a passion for food, wine and excellent service. Upon graduation, Everett returned to American Seasons as a line cook to further his knowledge of regional American cuisine. After two seasons in Nantucket, Everett relocated to New York City to work for Daniel Humm, Chef and co-owner of Eleven Madison Park which was a recipient of three Michelin stars.
While at Eleven Madison Park, Everett experienced a high volume upscale restaurant which allowed him to hone in on his culinary skills. He then took a position at WD~50 where he worked closely with Chef Wylie Dufresne. At WD~50, he not only had the opportunity to express and experiment with many food ideas, but he had the support to develop new techniques and flavor combinations.
Two years later Everett joined former co-worker, Jared Gadbaw and Chef Michael White to open Marea, also in New York. There, Everett met Chef Giovanni Rocchio who was a guest chef-in-residence at the restaurant. The two chefs remained in contact.
As Executive Sous Chef at Marea, Everett helped build the kitchen staff and the restaurant received two Michelin stars, as well as many other awards. His dedication at Marea led him to lead the Altamarea Group in opening their first international restaurant, Al Molo in Hong Kong. As the Executive Chef at Al Molo, Everett experienced the challenges of catering to a foreign clientele while maintaining company's standards. After leading Al Molo to success, Jimmy traveled throughout the Caribbean and North America and eventually ended up in California where he opened Sonny's Hideaway, an intimate 40 seat restaurant featuring modern American cuisine.
In 2014, Everett relocated to Boca Raton, Florida with his wife and son. Recognizing Chef Jimmy Everett's talents, Chef Rocchio invited Everett to join the Valentino Cucina Italiana team.
Having worked in fine dining for more than 16 years, London brings a wealth of knowledge to Valentino where he has worked as a server for four years. When London isn’t working at Valentino, he is a private race car coach and competes in monthly races. He is one semester away from completing a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management from Florida Atlantic University.