Award-winning chef. Successful restaurateur. Iron Chef judge. Social media star. Donatella Arpaia has done it all. Still her favorite thing to do is working in the kitchen, creating inspiring dishes using the freshest, most authentic ingredients—including Galbani® cheese. Explore her latest menu ideas and learn tricks of the trade from this inspirational entrepreneur.
“My life has always been filled with Ispirazione Italiana. My parents came to America from Naples, so my Italian heritage has always played a key role in my life. As a child, I spent my summers in Italy, close to my grandfather’s olive farm. I can still remember all of the fresh flavors; the figs picked right from the trees, cauldrons of bubbling tomato sauce, and of course, the magnificent cheese.
My father was a restaurateur, so I literally grew up in the restaurant business. He didn’t want me to follow in his footsteps, so I became a lawyer—but I couldn’t deny that my heart was still in the kitchen. So I left the courtroom and opened my first restaurant, Bellini, at age 25. I went on to culinary school, and to launch other award-winning restaurants—I even earned a coveted Michelin star! Today, I am proud to be the Founder of Prova Pizzabar and a judge for Iron Chef America and The Next Iron Chef on Food Network.
I became a Galbani® customer after a blind taste test. I had my kitchen manager do a cutting, and I specifically asked not to be told which brands I was tasting. When I tried Galbani cheese, it tasted like the summers that I spent in Italy. I loved the fresh, milky flavor of the Galbani Fresh Mozzarella. And I especially appreciated that it was made with all-natural ingredients, with no whiteners or artificial colors.
Serving natural products is important to me, so Galbani cheese was the perfect fit for me and my restaurant. To learn more about why I choose Galbani cheese, click here.
I still travel to Italy often. I love to visit with my relatives and even record them making traditional dishes, so I can share the beloved recipes that have been in my family for generations. Keeping my cooking authentic is important to me, and I am proud to incorporate that into my role with Galbani cheese. When Galbani asked me to become an ambassador, I couldn’t say no. It’s a brand that I have come to know and trust. ‘Galbani vuol dire fiducia’ – ‘Galbani, it means trust.’ It’s a motto I heard often in Italy and it’s something I truly believe. I am proud to share my heritage, my ideas, and my passion for great flavors as a spokesperson for Italy’s #1 cheese brand.”