Cooking is truly a lifetime passion for culinary artist Paul Matthews, the Corporate Chef and Director of Operations at Ciao Bella as well as our sister company Nagoya Japanese Steakhouse & Sushi. Like many in the restaurant industry, Paul started as a dishwasher in high school and quickly realized his passion for food service was much more than a summer job. Since then, he has held nearly every position in various restaurants, gathering a wealth of knowledge along the way.
While living and cooking in northwest Ohio, he met owners Mel and Barb Ayers and developed a lasting friendship. After visiting Port Clinton in 2012 and learning of the Ayers’ intentions to build Ciao Bella, Paul, along with his wife and 3 children, decided that it would be the perfect place for he and his family, as well as provide a challenge and adventure for his culinary career. “Personally and professionally, it was a great relationship from the start,” Mel said of his connection with Paul.
“I view my position as an honor and a great responsibility to utilize my skills to enhance our guests’ sensory experiences,” said Chef Paul. “I describe cooking as an exercise of equilibrium; a delicate balance of the flavors, visual arrangement of colors and shapes, and the extensive research required in finding the perfect ingredients.”
Paul is looking forward to unlocking his vault of recipes and bringing his own creations to Ciao Bella. With his rich history and commitment to excellence, we are very proud to have Paul as part of the Ciao Bella family.