Valentina Harris

food&wine writer

Valentina Harris is the most noted UK based authority on Italian food and food culture. Descendant from the noble Renaissance family Sforza, Valentina is the youngest of a large Anglo Italian family. Her education began at the St. George’s English School in Rome. After qualifying with 2 diplomas for teaching and cooking at the Scuola di Alta Cucina Cordon Bleu Roma in 1976, Valentina moved to London and began to work as a private chef and in a variety of different restaurants and situations, establishing herself as an absolutely authentic Italian chef. Her philosophy has always been about sourcing the best available local, seasonal ingredients and then doing as little as possible to them in order to allow their own flavours and textures to shine.

Valentina now divides her time between teaching; planning and running events involving food, wine and cookery; her consultancy to hotels, restaurants, and retail outfits; writing; broadcasting; running cookery holidays in Italy or France and teaching many U.K. based Italian cookery courses. Valentina’s skill for food styling also means she works regularly with various award winning food photographers.

In 2013 Valentina is also producing and hosting several Food Festivals on London’s famous Southbank, including The Chocolate Festival, the Cheese and Wine Festival, The Real Food Festival and The Alchemy Festival. Her culinary autobiography, Fiori di Zucca, will be published in June 2013 and has already attracted the attention of much of the international media.

For details of Valentina’s  books, cookery courses, catering or consultancy services go to

Valentina lives by the sea in Somerset, her refuge from a very busy life, with her dog Chef.

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Events in past editions