Mauro Golmarvi, Proprietor
Mauro Golmarvi, with over 25 years of experience as a chef, founded Assaggio Ristorante in 1993. As the owner, Golmarvi manages all aspects of the restaurant’s operations, from menu development and execution, to staff training, budgeting, and serving as the restaurant’s proud maitre d’. Golmarvi’s role in the restaurant is that of a true host. He welcomes guests as if they were visiting his own home, while supervising the kitchen, and ensuring that the food’s quality and consistency never varies.
A self-taught chef, originally inspired by his mother, Golmarvi began his career as a prep cook in Rome, Italy. In 1984, he brought his passion for Italian cuisine to the United States, where he served as chef at La Fontana and Il Florentine, both in San Francisco. Golmarvi also worked at Valeriano in Napa Valley, prior to moving to Seattle. Before opening Assaggio, Golmarvi served as executive chef at Saluté in Citta in downtown Seattle and Calabria in Kirkland, Washington.
Golmarvi received a bachelor’s degree in economics and political science in Italy. In his spare time he enjoys spending time with his wife, Karen and traveling. He regularly visits various provinces in Italy, always on the lookout for new ideas.
Chef Golmarvi’s Philosophies on Cooking
Golmarvi is focused on high quality, authentic Italian cuisine with an emphasis on the North Central Adriatic region. He goes shopping each morning at the Pike Place Market for fresh fish and takes regular trips to Italy to stock his wine collection. Golmarvi’s ultimate goal is to have the salt and pepper removed from the tables entirely; the food being left seasoned just as it is “in the old country”.
Golmarvi says his theory on creating rich, flavorful sauces is simple, “The burners in Assaggio’s kitchen are never turned off,” he says. The sauces simmer throughout the night, never heated at too high of a temperature or boiled to damper the taste.
“Food is an art, and we are the artists,” says Golmarvi, in emphasizing the importance of having respect for food in cooking. “In Italy, we truly cherish food and take cooking very seriously.”
When asked what he considers the biggest compliment to his cooking “Scarpetta!” Golmarvi proclaims. In Italy this expression means for the plate to come back to the chef completely clean. “The highest praise you can give a chef in Italy is to take a piece of bread, the size of one’s heel, and finish off any remaining sauce. Then the plate is returned to the chef with everything having been eaten,” Golmarvi explains.
History and Profile
Assaggio, meaning “to taste” was created from a dream Chef Mauro Golmarvi had in his youth. The entire restaurant, from the high ceilings, to the Michaelangelo-inspired are on the walls, were recreated to match the image that he had dreamt about so many years before.
Local artist, Janice Warren, is responsible for executing Mauro’s vision with elaborate wall murals, creating the authentic, Italian bistro feel of Assaggio. The following are all Michaelangelo replicas found in Assaggio, with the exception of Uffzi, which is by the artist, Lippi:
• Creation of Adam — above the kitchen
• Creation of Adam and Eve — south side of the dining room
• Holy Family — north side of the dining room
• Creation of Earth — on the ceiling in the north side of the restaurant
• Ladies of Justice — above the archway, dividing the dining room
• Creation of Moon and Water — on the ceiling in the south side of the restaurant
• Joann — above the entry
• Uffzi — on the back wall of the restaurant’s south side
2010 4th Avenue
Seattle, WA 98121