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170 Wine & Spirit Purveyors • 70 of San Diego's Top Chefs
Celebrity Chefs • Cooking & Wine Tasting Classes
Big Bottle Auction • Continuous Food and Wine Tastings
Over 800 Wines • $50,000 Chef of The Fest Competition

Suzette Gresham
Owner/Executive Chef of Acquerello

san diego wine food festival chef Suzette_Gresham image

Born in California, of French heritage, Suzette holds several degrees including an A.S., A.A. She is also an Honors graduate from a Culinary Apprenticeship Program.

Having achieved many "firsts," Suzette was the first female Chef's Apprentice to accompany the U.S. Culinary Olympic Team to Frankfurt, Germany in 1980. She was also the first to return four years later, as an individual competitor, to win a Bronze medal of her own.

After being the first Junior Member of the local ACF chapter, "The Chef's Association of the Pacific Coast," and Chairman of the same group for three successful terms, she was elected to the Board of Directors, and held various positions.

Suzette has been the recipient of many awards in the Culinary Arts Competition arena. She was honored in San Francisco with a Grand Award, and a Best of Show in Tucson, Arizona. One of few women to be elected "Chef of the Year" by the local ACF, she also is the holder of the prestigious Antonin Careme medal.

Most of her experience had centered around hotels and airlines, until she met her current partner, Giancarlo Paterlini…and together they opened their restaurant, Acquerello, in July of 1989.

Suzette's style of cuisine showcases Italy's simple but elegant approach to time-honored, traditional dishes, as well as the more modern, interpretive applications. Acquerello has received much recognition for its fine Regional Italian cuisine, expansive wine list, and attentive service. The restaurant has received 2.5 stars out of a possible 3 in the San Francisco Chronicle, as well as a rave review by Carolyn Bates of Gourmet Magazine. In the March 1997 issue of Wine Spectator Magazine, Acquerello was named the number 2 Italian restaurant in the United States.

Now in its 21st year, Acquerello continues to stay in the front line of evolving cuisine. The restaurant was featured on Check, Please! Bay Area in April of 2009, and has continued to receive outstanding reviews from many publications, including Zagat, San Francisco Magazine, and Bon Appetit Magazine. Most recently, in August of 2009, Michael Bauer of The San Francisco Chronicle wrote a memorable piece in honor of the restaurant's 20th anniversary. Finally, in October of 2007, Acquerello received its first Michelin Star, and remains a Michelin starred restaurant today.

After 25 years of cooking, Suzette still enjoys teaching and has been involved in Draeger's Culinary Center for a number of years. Her articles and recipes have been featured in various magazines, including her article on Italian style ragu in the November 2000 issue of Fine Cooking Magazine. She is a contributor to several cookbooks, and has packaged a series of Crostini toppings for the retail market. Suzette has also performed as a Guest Chef aboard the Seabourn Cruise line.

Acquerello continues to be involved in all the major food events held in San Francisco, including The Golden Glass and SF Chefs. Suzette continually contributes to the Industry through her involvement with the local culinary schools. To date, 50 externs have successfully passed through Acquerello's kitchen. Her goal is to continue learning and growing within her profession, passing along whatever knowledge she can to those who follow.

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San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival
World of Wine Event, LLC
1393 North Cuyamaca
El Cajon, CA  92020

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