Prestigious certification attests to the authenticity of Ravello, helmed by Executive Chef Fabrizio Schenardi of Torino, Italy

At the 6th annual “A Taste of Piemonte” Italian celebration at Ravello at Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort, December 7-8, 2023, Executive Chef Fabrizio Schenardi was presented with a special honour: Ravello was recognized with “100 Percent Italian Taste Certification” at the Platinum Level, the highest rank. Ravello is the first restaurant in the United States to receive this designation, bestowed upon by the Milan, Italy based ITA0039 100% Italian Taste Certification organization, which uses ASACERT assessment and accreditation to inspect, evaluate, and determine the rating.

Raffaele Trovato, Director and Vice President of Italian Food Style Education (IFSE) Culinary School, presented Schenardi with the award in person at Ravello. "I strongly wanted Ristorante Ravello to obtain this important certification; I greatly admire Chef Fabrizio Schenardi’s work and the commitment he put into bringing the authentic Italian cuisine to the US for many years,” says Trovato. “The Four Seasons company supports him in this, allowing him to do an excellent job, which is truly important. I'm delighted that Ravello has obtained the highest honour: the Platinum-level certification. This is a testament to how well Fabrizio and his staff are doing. It is certainly a well-deserved recognition and knowing that Ravello was the only restaurant in the entire US to achieve it makes this acknowledgment even more precious. Fabrizio is a true worldwide ambassador of Italian cuisine, as he has consistently demonstrated, and now ITA0039 has certified this."

Over the past several months, Ravello underwent an inspection process to review its menu, ingredients, wine list, and even the personnel. To qualify for a 100 percent Italian Taste Certification, Ravello must meet criteria including offering flour, oil, sauces, dairy and meat products of Italian origin; a traditional Italian menu with descriptions in both Italian and English; a wine list with a higher proportion of Italian wines; at least one staff member of Italian origin and with Italian language fluency working in the kitchen; and a demonstrated effort to promote Italy, not only the cuisine, but also Italy as a destination.

“I am extremely proud that Ravello received the highest level of recognition for Italian Taste Certification,” says Schenardi. “Since the restaurant opened in 2014, my team and I have focused on giving our patrons the most authentic Italian experience they can enjoy. It thrills me that Ravello is now recognized on a global scale as one of the premier Italian dining experiences available in the world. I am truly thankful for the support of the IFSE team and Italian officials who reviewed and attested to Ravello’s authenticity through this distinguished Platinum Level certification.”

Schenardi, originally from Torino, Italy, has long established relationships with acclaimed culinarians and product vendors throughout his home country. He has sourced many of Ravello’s ingredients, including flour, olive oil, cheeses, tomatoes, wine and more, from Italy. Each year, Schenardi works closely with IFSE to host “A Taste of Piemonte” event and culinary training, featuring staff education and industry seminars, and a special dinner highlighting the white Alba truffle. His years of dedication to promoting the Region of Piemonte have helped to raise awareness of not only the cuisine of Piemonte, but also the allure of the destination. In addition to staff education/training, and a special industry night event, the team also presented a six-course dinner featuring the white Alba truffle from the Region of Piemonte. This event, on December 8, 2023, was the sixth collaboration with Schenardi at Ravello - each year a true highlight for both Resort guests and locals, who highly anticipate the exceptional white truffle celebration.

“The certification recognized to Ravello restaurant confirms the attention of Italian restaurateurs abroad to the quality and authenticity of Italian food,” says Fabrizio Capaccioli, CEO of ASACERT and creator of the certification protocol ITA0039.  “There is a growing awareness of the need, even by Italian restaurateurs around the world, to represent their cuisine as authentic. We will continue to certify those in the world who have decided to invest in our country, and those who want to continue to look at Italy as an engine of universal culture, including through Italian restaurants around the world."

Thomas Steinhauer, General Manager and Regional Vice President of Four Seasons Resort Orlando, notes that since its inception, the Resort has made culinary excellence a key pillar to the guest experience and Resort identity.  “When I had the opportunity to meet Fabrizio Schenardi, I knew that he would have not only the vision and drive, but also immense passion for the role and the people skills needed to develop an amazing team,” says Steinhauer. “We are honoured to be recognized with such a prestigious award for Ravello and are very proud of the culinary culture Fabrizio’s leadership has created."

Culinary Talent

In addition to Schenardi, who brings an extensive background in Italian cuisine and experience at restaurants around the world, Schenardi oversees a talented team of culinarians at Ravello. Mario Angel Arredondo is the Ravello Sous Chef.  Originally from Mexico City, Arredondo brings extensive experience with Italian cuisine, working for two Michelin star rated restaurants in New York, Ai Fiori restaurant and Marea, a James Beard Award winning restaurant. Arredondo also served as sous chef at Tavola, the signature Italian restaurant at The Cloister at Sea Island, Georgia.

Additionally, Executive Sous Chef Matthew Vonderembse is key to Ravello’s success. Vonderembse has been a part of the Four Seasons Resort Orlando team since pre-opening, first starting in Capa as a Cook, moving up to Chef de Partie, Sous Chef, Restaurant chef of Ravello, and Outlet Chef, serving across all outlets. Recently, he was promoted to Executive Sous Chef, working closely with Schenardi overseeing all restaurant and banquet operations.

Executive Pastry Chef Rabii Saber is a twice-nominated James Beard Award semifinalist for Outstanding Pastry Chef. Saber, who holds expertise in chocolate artistry, is known for his intricate chocolate sculptures and exquisite, flavourful desserts, including the Tiramisu Classico and the Stracciatella Tortoni Cake in Ravello.


About Ravello

Ravello is the Resort’s modern Italian restaurant, serving pizza, bread and pasta made entirely from scratch, and numerous Italian specialties. Guests love Schenardi’s housemade limoncello and charcuterie, and the delicious fresh pasta. In June 2022, Ravello received a recommendation in the first Michelin Guide for Miami, Orlando and Tampa, while sister restaurant, Capa, on the Resort’s 17th floor, is rated one Michelin star. The restaurant is open nightly for dinner, and daily for breakfast; reservations are recommended. Contact 407 313 6161 for dining reservations and more information.

About IFSE

IFSE is the only cooking school that is acknowledged by the General Secretary of The Italian Republic, referred to as the most innovative school of Italian cuisine. The school safeguards and promotes Italian nutrition and excellence through training courses, conferences, conventions and more. IFSE collaborates with food experts, nutritionists and agronomists of international acclaim to promote high quality education and focus on the health-related aspects of food. Students are trained in the principles of healthy cooking and the Mediterranean diet.