We love our Chef Sandy DiGiovanni who works with us to create and execute some of the most memorable menus you can imagine in addition to giving her signature touch to her very popular cooking classes here at The Culinary Center. Here’s her story…
She was born with a silver measuring spoon in her mouth and wrapped in swaddling aprons. With a restaurateur for a mother and an Italian baker for a father, she was destined for the kitchen. By the age of 7, Sandy had a job peeling potatoes and making French fries at her mother’s drive-in restaurant, Stack’s Drive In. “I was the richest 2nd grader in town,” Sandy recalls. She continued to help run the family business and in 1985, at the age of 37, she took the reins completely. Sandy eventually decided to explore other paths, and closed her mother’s restaurant.
“I put a Gone Fishin’ sign on the door, locked up the joint, and never looked back,” she said.
In time, Sandy realized that cooking was ingrained in her and could no longer be ignored, so in 1993, she started Food Art Catering. After a successful six years in business, Sandy decided to close up shop. She took a 15 year “food hiatus” before auditioning for NBC’s America’s Next Great Restaurant, along with 20,000 other contestants. She took 5th place!
“Sometimes when you keep running away from something, you end up where you started,” explains DiGiovanni. Chef Sandy, who is also a contributing writer for Edible Magazine, is our Chef de Cuisine at CCKC and teaches a wide variety of cooking classes, bringing her own unique style of culinary education to the public.