Meet Your Chef: Josh Monopoli of Monopoli Man Hospitality
Get to know your Vail Valley chefs
Q: What is your name, where do you cook and what is your official title?
A: My name is Josh Monopoli and I am the owner and chef of Monopoli Man Hospitality, a private chef company bringing the fine dining experience to you in the comfort of your own home.
Q: How long have you lived in the valley and what brought you here?
A: I moved to Vail in fall of 2015, when I accepted a chef position at Mountain Standard.
Q: When did you first realize that you wanted to become a chef?
Support Local Journalism
A: My path to becoming a chef began 20 years ago when I took my first job as a dishwasher at the local family restaurant in my rural Georgia hometown. After a couple of months, I was promoted to pizza cook and the rest is history, I was hooked on cooking!
Q: Who has inspired you throughout your culinary journey?
A: I have found inspiration from many sources throughout my career. From my father, Tony, who cooks only from the heart (you can TASTE it!), to the farmers that create the incredible produce I love to use, and of course the chefs that I have had the pleasure to work with in Vail and beyond.
Q: What’s your favorite spice?
A: Coriander! It adds such an amazing flavor to so many styles of food.
Q: Favorite protein?
A: This is such a difficult question, I love all meat! However, I would have to say that personally I could eat chicken wings every day.
Q: Favorite fruits and veggies?
A: My favorite fruits are peaches and mangoes. Colorado peaches are the best, and this is coming from a Georgia Boy, and I eat mango just about every day. As far as vegetables go, I love corn and cucumbers in the summer and root vegetables, leeks and squash, in the winter. But truly, my favorite produce is whatever is in season and looking good!
Q: Name your carb: pasta, potatoes, rice, polenta, etc.?
A: You’re really asking the difficult questions here! Growing up with an Italian father, we ate a lot of pasta. And I still choose that carb over all others to this day. It’s just so satisfying to my soul (and stomach), and I love to make it for my family and for clients.
Q: What’s your favorite comfort food?
A: Pasta carbonara is probably the top spot, my wife asked for it weekly when pregnant and I was only too happy to oblige!
Q: Is there anything else about you we should share?
A: After years helping one of the most successful kitchens in Vail, I stepped away from restaurant life to find more balance and enjoy time with my family. We have two young children, Ronin (3) and River (1), and I love how my work allows me lots of time to spend with them, while sharing my skills and passion with locals and visitors to our beautiful valley. I pride myself on bringing my guests an elevated dining experience outside of the traditional restaurant setting, without sacrificing service, or forgoing the added touches (like expert wine and cocktail pairings) that make a great dinner even better.
Also worth noting, I love producing my own ingredients, which I think is something unique I bring to the table. From my own vinegars to pickles and ferments, I strive to create as many components from scratch as possible. This reliance on my own pantry drives my creativity, and allows me to extend the season for some of my favorite things, an example would be my Colorado peach vinegar, which adds a punch of summer’s favorite fruit to dishes well beyond harvest time. If you would like to inquire about or book your evening/event, please send me an email to Chef@JoshMonopoliCooks.com or visit my website JoshMonopoliCooks.com.