Capellini and Clogs
You can't see them in the picture, but Steve DiFillippo is wearing clogs. The telltale sign of a foodie. He says he wears them with his tuxedo at black-tie galas. The telltale sign of a crazy-obsessed foodie. The kind of foodie who frets over the size of gnocchi or redesigns floor plans once, twice, thrice, and more, all to ensure there's no bad seat in his restaurant.
That restaurant would be Davio’s, which, if you haven't heard of it, means you've not been living in these parts or you don't eat. Because everyone knows about Davio’s. It has outlasted scads of new-big-thing eateries for 28 years. Ask Steve why, and he'll say sure, it's about the tremendous food, but it's mainly about how guests are treated — like royalty. (Joe! We haven't seen you since last month! Your favorite sauvignon blanc is right on the way!) Which is how Steve felt back as a youngster cooking side by side with his mama in Lynnfield, whipping up Portuguese and Italian family recipes. Food was something special to him since the first bite of his nanna's Kobe meatballs. From then on, this captain of the Lynnfield High School football team was taste-testing rare meat and savoring whole lobsters — in secret, thank you. No linebacker stud would do such a thing.
But a restaurateur and food entrepreneur creating an empire would. And that is what Steve is working on now: two new Davio’s will open in the next few months in Chestnut Hill, Lynnfield and New York City, joining the string in downtown Boston, Foxborough, Atlanta, and Philadelphia. Steve's hand-made spring rolls are sold in 40 states in 3,000 retailers. Finally, this fall, Steve will roll out his first cookbook, It's All About the Guest: Exceeding Expectations in Business and in Life the Davio’s Way, offering family- and guest-annotated recipes as well as words of wisdom on entertaining and hosting. Clogs, sadly, are not included.