Portland, Oregon based restaurant owner and award winning celebrity chef speaker Cathy Whims is a culinary leader in the United States. Chef Whims has been nominated for the James Beard Foundation award for Best Chefs: Northwest countless times and was a finalist in 2009, 2010, and 2011.
Chef Cathy Whims got her start studying the culinary arts with Italian cookbook writers and New York Times Bestselling authors, Marcella and Victor Hazan in Venice after graduating college. She later was given the privileged opportunity to train under critically acclaimed chef world renowned Madeleine Kamman at The School for American Chefs at Beringer Vineyards in California’s Napa Valley.
Many would say that celebrity chef speaker Cathy Whims’ culinary career truly started when she began working at Portland’s premier Italian restaurant, Genoa. The formal restaurant was where Cathy made a name for herself, working in the kitchen with Chef Giancinto Albarello and eventually becoming co-owner of the business. After twenty years at Genoa, Chef Whims went out on her own and, in 2005, decided to open her own restaurant with partner, David West which they named Nostrana. The Italian eatery, Nostrana was almost immediately named Best Restaurant of the Year by Portland’s newspaper, The Oregonian. Chef Whims has received national recognition as a cuisine expert in top regional Italian food with mentions in publications like National Geographic Traveler, The New York Times, Bon Appetit, Sunset, and GQ magazines. Chef Cathy also is on the Board of Advisors for Slow Food Portland, an international organization which aims to “preserve traditional and regional cuisine and encourages farming of plants, seeds and livestock characteristic of the local ecosystem”.