Chefs to Watch: David DiBari at The Cookery in Dobbs Ferry


Chef-owner David DiBari

The 411 on The Cookery.

Born: April 30, 1978 in Verplanck.

Grew up: Verplank

Culinary school: Culinary Institute of America

Experience: Windows on the World, Babbo, Patroon, Danube, Five Points, Eastchester Fish Gourmet and Zuppa. Started washing dishes at the Paradise Restaurant in Verplanck at 14.

Cooking style: Driven by treating food simply without pretense while creating neo-nostalgic flavors and textures. It playfully pays homage to sustaining an old-world style of peasant Italian cooking.

Why he’s one to watch: DiBari has already earned his cooking chops (and our praise) with his silky pasta sauces and bold braises. So although he’s definitely right at home among the Old Guard, we think he belongs among the new wave, too, because he never stops innovating. This spring, he started serving the ultimate for adventurous eaters: brains, tongues and bone marrow. That he couldn’t keep these items on the menu means that he’s earned the trust of Westchester diners. That he’s not afraid to keep these diners on their toes means we think he’ll be changing the dining scene for years to come.

Future influence: Right now, I that working with and supporting farmers on the sustainability front is very important. Nose-to-tail eating is part of that equation, and is something I will continue to progress with personally and in the restaurant. We are re-educating society in what was the norm of dining amongst older generations — where people couldn’t afford to buy meat, so they raised their own and ate everything, because it all had moral and monetary value.

Linda Lombroso contributed. Photo by Tania Savayan.


About Author

Liz Johnson is content strategist for The Journal News and, and the founding editor of lohudfood, formerly know as Small Bites. As food editor, she won awards from the New York News Publishers Association, the Association of Food Journalists and the Associated Press. She lives in Nyack with her husband and daughter on a tiny suburban lot they call their farm — with fruit trees, an herb garden, and a yardful of lettuce, tomatoes, onions, shallots, cucumbers, zucchini, radishes, cabbage, peppers, Brussels sprouts and carrots and four big blueberry bushes.

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