Chef and restaurateur Gennaro Contaldo was born on 21 January 1949 in the village of Minori on the Amalfi Coast. Having left Italy in 1969 he learned the trade at Antonio Carluccio’s Neal Street restaurant in Covent Garden. Between 1999 and 2009 he ran his own Passione restaurant at no. 10 Charlotte Street. The chef’s cooking style, combining his liking for game and fungi with the use of seasonal ingredients and herbs, was reflective of the Amalfi Coast where young Gennaro grew up (Passione was awarded ‘Best Italian Restaurant 2005’ by the Tio Pepe Restaurant Awards). In April 2003, Contaldo published his first book entitled Passione which is dedicated to the Amalfi style of cooking. It won the ‘Gourmand World Cookbook Best Italian Cuisine Book’ for 2003. A number of other cookbooks followed. Jamie Oliver is Contaldo’s protégé.