Kneading Dough

Meet Head Chef Michele.

At Vinoteca, our people are one of our hero ingredients. Their heritage, their stories and their experiences all influence the food they bring to the table.


Head Chef Michele Romano is no exception, celebrating his traditional roots and love of exploring the world through his own unique brand of classic-meets-contemporary Italian.


Michele was born and raised in Pompeii, and at 14 secured his first job at Antichi Sapori, a trattoria in nearby Salerno. This is where he first discovered a fascination for food, which was encouraged through at-home cooking sessions with his nonna.


A few years later, Michele began hospitality school, venturing south to gain experience over a busy hotel’s summer season before returning to Salerno to work at the famous Da Nando pizzeria for two years.


Upon completing his studies, Michele won a prized position in a Michelin 1-Star restaurant, Tenuta le Trabe, where he continued to refine his traditional techniques and learn from experienced chefs.


After just six months, Michele followed his superior who opened southern Italy’s first teppanyaki restaurant. And it was here that he began explore different flavours and expand his understanding of food. Unsurprisingly, this dramatic culinary shift was an injection of inspiration and soon evolved into an eagerness to travel the world.


Michele spent two years in London before his heart drew him back to his home country where he enjoyed two career-defining seasons, one at Capri’s famous Quisisana Hotel and another at a Michelin 2-Star experience on the Amalfi Coast, Il Faro di Capo d’Orso.


In 2017, Michele’s adventurous spirit and ambition brought him to Australia. He continued to push his personal bar, gaining prestigious experience at the renowned Vue d’Monde, which motivated him to want to elevate and evolve his own country’s cuisine.


Today, Michele’s distinct culinary style blends this worldly experience with his first and deepest love—classic Italian cooking. As Head Chef at Vinoteca, he curates seasonal menus which showcase his signature style when each ingredient is at its best.


Experience Vinoteca.