MORINI AT ALBA
Alba Vineyard and The Altamarea Group have partnered together to create a truly unique food and wine experience! Together with Alba's enduring commitment to producing quality wines matched with Altamarea's unparalleled culinary creations; the result is a food and wine lovers haven where the kitchen meets the farm. (Weekends only from April - November and special Chef Dinners)
MEET THE CHEFS
MICHAEL WHITE,CHEF & OWNER
Although Michael White’s soulful, flavorful interpretations of Italian cuisine indicate otherwise, Michael is in fact a Midwesterner who spent his childhood in Beloit, Wisconsin. By whim or intuition, White decided to enroll in Kendall Culinary Institute and then secured a position in Chicago’s Spiaggia. He studied for seven years at the acclaimed San Domenico in Imola before returning to the United States. In 2007, White partnered with Ahmass Fakahany to open Due Terre and Due Mari in New Jersey. One year later, Fakahany and White officially formed the Altamarea Group to open Marea, which garnered three stars from The New York Times, and holds two Michelin stars. From Marea, Fakahany and White extended their culinary vision and opened Michelin-starred Ai Fiori; Osteria Morini restaurants in Soho, New York; Bernardsville, New Jersey; and Washington, D.C.; Vaucluse, their French brasserie on Park Avenue, New York; and Nicoletta Pizzerias. Outside the United States, Altamarea has properties in London, Istanbul, and Hong Kong.
BILL DORRLER, EXECUTIVE CHEF
Chef Bill attributes his commitment to highlighting fresh and seasonal ingredients to his youth, growing up in Flemington, NJ. As a young man, Bill spent his days working on a nearby farm, picking fresh produce and utilizing the season’s bounty to bring family and friends together.
Bill graduated from Saint Joseph University in Philadelphia in 1994 with a degree in Accounting. But his passion for food persisted and after two years of working in an office, Bill walked into Café Cucina, in Bridgewater, NJ, and asked for a job. He started off at the pasta station, working the line. In less than a year, Bill assumed the role as the restaurant’s Sous Chef.
A few years later Bill left New Jersey and moved back to Pennsylvania to join the team at the William Penn Inn, in Gwynedd, as Chef de Cuisine. He spent the next four years leading and developing a team in the Inn’s hallmarked establishment. By 2004, Bill turned his attention to authentic Italian cuisine, and then moved on to become the Executive Chef at Harvest Restaurant Group’s Ciao, in Basking Ridge. Bill’s commitment to fresh ingredients and new passion for Italian food were a match.
In 2007, he was recruited by the Altamarea Group to lead their New Jersey Italian restaurants, working very closely with Chef Michael White. As Executive Chef, Bill helped open Due Terre in Bernardsville (now Osteria Morini NJ) and Due Mari in New Brunswick. Each restaurant was rated “Best New Restaurant in New Jersey” and received rave reviews from The New York Times, and top marks from The Star Ledger. From New Jersey, Bill was promoted to head the new and exciting kitchen of Osteria Morini in SoHo. His straight-from-the earth-cooking philosophy naturally compliments the approachable cuisines found at each restaurant he oversees.
Spending his youth in Morristown, New Jersey, Kevin grew up harvesting fresh produce and dairy at his grandparent’s farm where he learned the essence of using local ingredients in innovative recipes.
KEVIN KNEVALS, CHEF DI CUCINA
Kevin was introduced to Southern Italian cuisine by Bruno Brita of Portofino’s Restaurant. He was soon offered the unique opportunity to travel and work in the Emilia Romagna region of Italy. It was here and under the guidance of Michelin Star chefs, Gualtiero Marchesi and Gianni D’Amato at Il Rigoletto that Kevin fell even more in love with Italy’s culture and regional cuisine.
After returning to New York and graduating from the Culinary Academy, Kevin joined the Altamarea Group at Due Mari in New Brunswick, New Jersey under the supervision of Chef Michael White and Executive Chef Bill Dorrler. After two years in New Jersey, Kevin helped open Osteria Morini in New York City before being promoted to Chef de Cuisine at Due Terre in Bernardsville, which later became Osteria Morini New Jersey.
Kevin’s depth and knowledge of Emilia-Romagna and his extensive Italian training made him the most natural fit and talent to recreate Osteria Morini in Bernardsville with Bill Dorrler, Michael White, and the entire Altamarea Group team.