Canzonetta Named Finalist in Bon Appetit Favorite Chef Contest

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The owner-chef of Bistro 1907 is a finalist in Bon Appetit Magazine’s Favorite Chef contest.

Mark Canzonetta says that if he wins, he will use the $20,000 prize to launch a business incubator for aspiring local restaurateur-chefs.

The winner of the contest will be determined in a series of public online voting. Votes can be cast for Canzonetta HERE.

“I am honored and taken aback,” Canzonetta says of his nomination.

He is one of 15 finalists who were selected by the magazine. Voting for the first round ends Feb. 25. Then, the 10 top vote-getters will vie against each other in public voting from Feb. 25 to March 4, followed by the top five, March 4 to 11. The winner will be announced April 8.

In addition to the $20,000 prize, the winner will also be the subject of a feature article in Bon Appetit Magazine.

Canzonetta has long wanted to launch an incubator.

“When I was young and I started my first restaurant, I wasn’t a businessman and it took me a long time to become one,” he said. “All young entrepreneurs need a mentor in the harsh reality of this industry in order to make a profit, and it would be great to tutor one or two people [at a time].”

Details haven’t been ironed out, but he expects the incubator would be in a separate location near Bistro 1907, located in the DoubleTree by Hilton hotel in downtown Youngstown, and would involve other local chef-owners.

In his statement to Bon Appetit, Canzonetta said the incubator would give young entrepreneurs a place to “nurture” their restaurant concept.

“It’s been a goal of mine for the last few years, and it’s finally time to make it a reality,” he said in the statement. “I’ve had the opportunity to learn many lessons as a chef and restaurant owner – the hard way. It would bring me great joy to share what I have learned with others in order to make their paths easier.”

A native of Warren, Canzonetta is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N.Y., He  has worked as a chef for Food Channel celebrity Guy Fieri, helping him open more than 30 restaurant projects across the country.

Canzonetta told Bon Appetit that his signature dish is Papardelle Bolognese. “It just takes me back to a time in my life when Sundays were dedicated to food and family,” he wrote. 

Canzonetta opened Bistro 1907 in 2017. 

Lauren Lindvig, co-founder of Bliss 360 Marketing who handles publicity and marketing for Canzonetta’s Bistro 1907, nominated the chef in December. The magazine looks at every aspect of a chef-owner and their business, she said, before selecting the finalists.

Bliss 360 has created tabletop cards that will be placed inside the restaurant. Each card has information about the Bon Appetit Favorite Chef contest and a QR code that allows diners to vote for Canzonetta.

Copyright 2024 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.