DONNA SCALA


Proprietor and Chef, Bistro Don Giovanni - Napa, CA


As owner of Bistro Don Giovanni, Donna Scala blends key elements of creativity, design and commitment to quality that make the Bistro a unique dining experience.

Donna grew up surrounded by the family hotel/restaurant business in Virginia. Her grandfather, of Greek descent, had several different types of restaurants, which inspired her to follow in the family footsteps. Donna spent a year in the South of France studying her culinary craft and returned in 1982 to open a gourmet food store with a French/Italian flair in Sausalito called Donarcy's, featuring pastas, soups and gourmet food-to-go.

Coinciding with Donna and Giovanni's pairing up, Claude Rouas of the well-known Auberge du Soleil asked them to put together an Italian restaurant for a Yountville location. The Scala's created and named the Piatti Ristorante concept. After six years with Piatti Ristorante, Donna and Giovanni decided to branch out on their own and in 1993 they opened Bistro Don Giovanni, specializing in rustic Italian and southern French food.

Donna Scala is passionate about her creations, and only uses the finest ingredients from local purveyors as well as vegetables and herbs from the restaurant's gardens. The Scalas also produce their own olive oil from the olive trees located on the property.

In 1995 Donna and Giovanni opened Scala's Bistro in the Sir Francis Drake Hotel in San Francisco. The year it opened, Scala's Bistro was named "Best New Restaurant" nationwide by Food and Wine Magazine, and Donna Scala received the distinguished honor of "Best New Chef."

After five years, Donna and Giovanni left Scala's Bistro to concentrate all their energies on Bistro Don Giovanni where you'll find them daily tending Napa Valley's finest and most popular eatery.

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