Aldo Vitale, the celebrated and award-winning Chef / Owner of Aldo’s Ristorante Italiano, is no stranger to the kitchen or to Italian cuisine.
Born in the southern region of Calabria, Italy in 1945, Aldo was raised in a family of skilled artisans who taught him the importance of pride in one’s work. It was during his apprenticeship in his father’s woodworking shop that Aldo acquired his family’s traditional sense of fine craftsmanship and attention to minute detail. True to his native Italian roots, however, the kitchen was the center of daily life in Aldo’s home and it was there that he found the inspiration to feed a lifelong passion for the culinary arts.
After emigrating to the United States in 1961 at the age of sixteen, Aldo enlisted in the US Army and found himself stationed back in his native country — this time, in the Tuscan region surrounding Florence and Siena. Fueled by his passion for authentic regional Italian cuisine, he honed his culinary skills in Tuscany and the surrounding areas and in the process befriended many leading Italian chefs and restaurateurs.
When he returned to the States, he began his long and successful culinary career as a chef and restaurateur. It was while serving as executive chef at a prosperous Baltimore restaurant in Little Italy that he established his distinction as a master of simple yet sophisticated cuisine from his native Italy. In 1981, Aldo moved to rural Maryland to open his pioneer venture in full service dining. The next decade was filled with great success not only at the restaurant but also with “La Pasticceria Aldo,” a wholesale bakery Aldo opened in 1993 that prepared and distributed delectable baked desserts to many prominent national accounts such as Nordstrom cafes and Dean & DeLuca.
Today, Aldo owns and operates Aldo’s Ristorante Italiano in Baltimore, Maryland. His insistence that a comfortably elegant decor reflect and complement his culinary philosophy led to an eleven month, multimillion dollar construction project in which Aldo himself participated. Calling upon the skills he learned from his father, Aldo crafted all of the restaurant’s intricate woodwork, including the beautiful mahogany bar. The construction transformed two abandoned brownstones in to what has been called “a polished, romantic space” and “the most sophisticated restaurant in Little Italy” by Southern Living magazine.
In his “spare” time Chef Aldo enjoys teaching the techniques and methods of his unique and subtle style of cuisine to aspiring chefs at the restaurant and a special events. On a local and national level, he has shared his culinary philosophy and expertise with such print and broadcast media as The Food Network, Southern Living Magazine, The Baltimore Sun, Baltimore Magazine, and all of the major local television stations.
As Chef / Owner, Aldo can often be found in the kitchen of Aldo’s Ristorante Italiano creating and preparing sensational dishes for the restaurant’s Guests, a task he performs on a daily basis.