After nearly three decades of cooking in the kitchens of some of the most esteemed restaurants in the world, Chef Scamardella’s most recent endeavor is Corporate Executive Chef of Tao Restaurant.
Born and raised in an Italian-American household in Brooklyn, New York, Chef Scamardella received many of his culinary values from his heritage. With a father who grew up on a farm in Naples, Italy, fresh ingredients were mandatory, even in New York City. It was not long before a young Chef Scamardella saw his family’s old world cuisine given a new home.
The pairing of old and new is forefront in Chef Scamardella’s work. In a market that is saturated with Asian fusion restaurants, Chef Scamardella is able to use first-hand experience from his travels to set him apart from the competition. His travels to Tokyo, Bangkok and Hong Kong influenced him greatly, exposing him to a deep cultural respect for food and tradition. His trip to Hong Kong even gave him the inspiration for a new curry creation of roasted rack of lamb with green massaman curry that has quickly become a Tao staple.
Scamardella has truly had good fortune as a chef; with one opportunity seamlessly transitioning into another. He began his studies at New York City’s Technology Institute where Scamardella mastered the business of hotel and restaurant management. At the same time he acquired his culinary skills through work experiences at French restaurant Plaza Hotel and later Le Cygne. Working under Sous Chef and mentor Daniel Boulud at Polo Restaurant, Scamardella honed his skills with one of the world’s true master chefs.
Scamardella paved the way to distinction early; receiving his first two-star rating from the New York Times as Executive Chef at Vanessa’s restaurant. Scamardella went on to work for the owner of Vanessa’s restaurants in other locations including Ganni and Hoexters Market. Scamardella, as chef and partner, had a large hand in the success of the opening and driving concept behind Carmine’s and later Virgil’s BBQ and Gabriela’s Mexican. After nearly 15 years with his hands in several successful projects, Scamardella left the kitchen to consult for restaurants such as The Strip House, Harrah’s Casino, and Cessca.
Chef Scamardella’s experiences have cultivated into an exciting opportunity for both Scamardella and Tao Restaurant. Serving Tao in midtown, Tao Downtown, Tao in Las Vegas, Lavo New York, Lavo Las Vegas, and Arlington Club, Chef Scamardella’s food could easily get lost in the crowd; it is his respect for the history of Asian and Italian cuisine combined with his attention to detail that set his menu apart from the rest.