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Our Instructors

Cucina Director

Jennifer Wolfe Webb

Jennifer, a veteran culinary educator and food business consultant, directs the Cucina. Jennifer learned to cook from her mom, Char, and in cooking schools from Nantucket to New Orleans. She earned her culinary diploma from the Western Reserve School of Cooking and has worked as a food writer, caterer, event planner, and restaurant chef. She has taught in a number of venues including a cooking school in her home kitchen, Western Reserve School of Cooking, and Loretta Paganini School of Cooking. Jennifer’s passion is introducing people to the pleasures of good cooking, good food, and good wine. She loves to cook rustic Italian and French food, drink champagne, shop farmers’ markets, and eat barbecue.

 

Cucina Culinary Instructors

Jerry Risner

Jerry Risner is the Executive Chef at Gervasi Vineyard.   He manages multiple kitchens here and a large staff cooks and dishwashers.  Jerry’s passion for cooking began while watching his grandmother prepare memorable homemade meals as he was growing up. He earned a culinary degree from Sullivan University in Louisville, Kentucky, where he worked at the James-Beard-Award-winning restaurant, Azalea.  Jerry went on to cook at the renowned Woodlands Resort near Charleston, South Carolina. He apprenticed with Browne Trading Company, one of the most highly regarded seafood purveyors in the country, and then sought out internships at some top restaurants around the country.  Jerry returned home to Stark County to become the sous chef at Brookside Country Club. He joined Gervasi in 2010, and in 2011 received the American Culinary Federation (ACF), Akron/Canton Chapter Restaurant Chef of the Year award.  Jerry recently earned the prestigious Certified Executive Chef® Award from the ACF.  This recognition is not only a benchmark for personal and professional achievement but has also become recognized as a standard of excellence in the food service industry.

 

Meg Feller

A Canton, Ohio, native, Meg has worn a number of different hats in the food service business for 20 years. She currently owns Lemon Leaf Catering, specializing in elegant events, custom cooking classes, and private dinner parties. Earlier in her career, she relocated to Breckenridge, Colorado and then returned to Ohio to work at Glenmoor Country Club and Mustard Seed Market in Montrose. It was during this time that she realized her passion for cooking. She studied in the University of Akron’s Culinary Arts Program and has become is a self-taught pro at the grill.

 

 

Scott Fetty

Chef Scott Fetty has been the executive chef at The Inn at Honey Run in Millersburg, Ohio since January 2010. Previously, Scott was a chef/instructor at the Pennsylvania Culinary Institute and Le Cordon Blue in Pittsburgh and was sous chef at The Duquesne Club in Pittsburgh, rated the #1 private city club in the country.  He has earned over 20 gold medals in culinary competitions around the country and internationally, having won 6 gold medals at the 2004 and 2008 Culinary Olympics as a member of TEAM USA. Scott has competed and studied in Switzerland, Luxembourg, Germany, and France and was selected as the ACF Pittsburgh Chapter’s Chef of the Year for 2005. He has been featured on local and regional television, as well as public television and the Food Network. Scott judges and mentors student culinarians in competitions and for scholarships.  He has donated his time and culinary skills to charities, including the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, The American Humane Society, and the American Liver Foundation.

 

Anne Haynam

The owner of On the Spot Gourmet, a personal chef company, Anne also teaches and shares her lifelong love of cooking in an array of other specialized food events such as interactive cooking parties, culinary team building, tasting menu dinner parties at venues around northeast Ohio. Anne is a graduate of the Western Reserve School of Cooking and formerly worked as a pastry chef at The Great Lakes Baking Company. She has a passion for international travel and the culinary traditions that allow food to be a vehicle for exploring the world.  She team-taught a class at Hiram College titled “The Art of Making Dough” where students explored entrepreneurship and international baking traditions while starting a campus bakery.

 

 

Kathy Lehr

An educator, restaurant consultant, and bread expert, Kathy was mentored by French Chef, Danielle Forrestier (Julia Child’s bread consultant) and has been teaching cooking classes for 22 years. Along with training from several national bread authorities, she also trained with Kiko Denzer and has built a wood-fired oven in her backyard from which she teaches bread-making classes. Kathy is an expert in helping people understand the chemistry of bread making, thus building confidence and the ability to bake perfect breads every time.

 

 

 

Matthew Ridgway

Matthew attended DCT International Hotel and Culinary School in Lucerne Switzerland, Le Cordon Bleu in Paris and London, and Greystone Culinary Institute of America in St. Helena, California. Currently he is the Executive Chef and Dietary Manger at Hennis Care Centre in Bolivar.  Matthew has worked as Chef Production Manager at Heinen’s Fine Foods in Cleveland and as the Executive Chef at Atwood Lake Resort.  He served as chef with Princess Cruise Lines Land Division in Denali National Park, Alaska and has cooked in National Park lodges around the country including Yosemite, Glacier (in Northwestern Montana), and Katmai (in Alaska).  Matthew also spent two years in Garmisch Partenkirchen, Germany where he worked as a chef preparing food for the Marshall Centre School of Democratic Relations for former Soviet Block Countries and their dignitaries.

 

Bob Sferra

Creating with food is Chef Bob Sferra's passion. Bob was born into a big Italian family, and cooking symbolizes everything he loves. A marketing-business degree from John Carroll University paved the way for his culinary career. As a chef's apprentice, he helped Parker Bosley create The Cleveland Restaurant School. Bob attended the Cooking School at the Ritz-Escoffier in Paris, and won a scholarship to attend L’Ecole Lenotre in Plaisir, France. He earned a Grand Diploma in Pastry Arts from The French Culinary Institute in New York City and returned to Cleveland to serve as the pastry chef at the Inn at Turner’s Mill in Hudson, executive chef at The Harp-Irish Pub, chef at The Foundation House on the main campus of the Cleveland Clinic, and culinary director for a local culinary arts center.  Bob is currently the Executive Chef Consultant for Trevarrow, Inc., northeast Ohio’s leading Wolf and Sub Zero appliance distributor. He is the chef/owner of Bob Sferra Culinary Occasions, his six-year-old culinary and events business, and just opened the Better Occasions gourmet pastry shop in South Euclid, Ohio.  Bob has made multiple television appearances and is a published food writer and culinary consultant.

 

Bev Shaffer

Bev is a chef, food and travel writer (she authored the popular Ask Bev column that appeared in the Cleveland Plain Dealer), author of five cookbooks (her latest, CAKES to Die For!), and culinary instructor. She is a frequent and popular television and radio guest, cooking on all Cleveland network stations and public television. Chef Bev was formerly the director of the cooking school for Mustard Seed Markets, has developed more than 10,000 recipes on a wide variety of subjects, and was invited to cook at The James Beard House in New York City, among many other culinary accomplishments. She is currently the Recipe Development and Nutrition Coordinater and Chef for Vitamix Corporation.  Links to her blogs, Gadget Freak and Eat Plants can be reached through her website, www.bevshaffer.com.

 

 

Carla Snyder

After a semester studying in Europe, it became obvious to Carla that a large portion of the world didn't eat to live, but lived to eat. With a BA in journalism in hand, she began a 30-year culinary journey as a caterer, cooking school teacher, artisan baker, food writer, corporate culinary event planner, cookbook co-author of 5 books and blogger at www.ravenouskitchen.com. Her cookbook The Big Book of Appetizers, co-authored with Meredith Deeds, was nominated for a James Beard Award, and their 300 Sensational Soups was chosen by Good Morning America as one of the top 10 cookbooks of the year in 2009. Carla’s most recent release is an ebook with an app titled Serves Two.

 

 

Victoria Todd-Smith

A culinary educator, caterer, and chef for more than 25 years, Vicki spent many years in Europe and Asia before returning to the United States in 2000. She has had the honor of cooking for such luminaries as the late Benazir Bhutto, Anderson Cooper, Ken Burns, and the former Foreign Minister of Japan. Additionally, during her years in Asia she was the caterer of choice for many ambassadors and other members of the diplomatic corps. Upon her return to the United States, she accepted the position of Senior Executive Chef and Food and Beverage Manager at the Professional Education and Conference Center of Kent State University. Subsequently, she became Market Kitchen and Catering Director for Mustard Seed Market and Café in Solon and went on to run corporate dining for Jones Day law firm in Cleveland. At present Vicki works for a worldwide manufacturing company as the Executive Chef of their executive lodging operation.

 

Jodi and Brian Wilson

Growing up in ethnic households where gardening and "putting up" was a given, Jodi and Brian Wilson come from an authentic line of canners and preservers.  After 25 years of marriage, they can often be found on any given Friday night either preserving or consuming the fruits of their garden (along with a bottle of wine and frequently some good friends).  Over the years, they have honed their canning skills and can soundly report that canning is not to be feared and is actually lots of fun--with delicious results!

 

 

Cucina Wine Instructors

Andrew Codispoti

As the winemaker at Gervasi Vineyard, Andy aspires to produce elegant wines of the highest quality that will complement gatherings of family and friends. An Italian immigrant, he humorously links the beginning of his winemaking career to the age of four when he stomped grapes in his birth town in southern Italy.

The family owned several small vineyards in the area and over time the winemaking traditions of his father and mother exposed him to the art of old world winemaking.  After retiring from a career in the bearing industry, Andy joined the Gervasi team and has responsibility for all phases of making Gervasi wines, from vineyard to bottling—and planning for future growth. In Gervasi’s first two harvests, their wines have been awarded three medals by the Ohio Wine Competition.

 

Abraham McCune

Currently the Wine Steward and Service Coordinator at Gervasi, Abraham began his career in the service industry at the age of 20 as a bartender in Sydney, Australia, where he also helped to open the very first Outback Steakhouse. He has worked in the restaurant business since then, including stints at Carrabba’s and at 91 Wood-Fired Oven. Abraham recently completed and passed his Advanced Wine and Spirit Education Trust Level 3 Certificate. In all the phases of his career, Abraham’s passion for learning has remained constant. He loves exploring new wines and reacquainting himself with familiar ones.

 

 

Todd Steiner

As the leader of the enology program at Ohio State University and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, Todd focuses on enhancing wine quality and consistency for the Ohio grape and wine industry. In addition to his enology research projects, he co-organizes the annual Ohio Grape and Wine Conference, coordinates the annual Ohio Wine Competition, organizes educational workshops, and consults with wine producers. Todd has helped develop the groundwork for the Ohio Quality Wine Program and has been honored in being asked to judge in numerous national and international wine competitions throughout the United States. He recently served on the Board of Directors for The American Society of Enology and Viticulture– Eastern Section.

 

TOUR THE WINERY

Public and Private Tours

Experience Gervasi and learn more about the wine making process while taking in the breathtaking views. Learn More →

GV EVENTS

Music, Art and More!

Enjoy live music on the Piazza, stroll the Farmer's Market for local produce and experience Gervasi Vineyard. Learn More →

LEARNING EXPERIENCES

Cucina Culinary Classes

You'll dive in and get cooking with personalized instruction from one of our experienced chef instructors, and create a meal that you'll sit down to enjoy with a glass of wine.

Wine Classes

Whether you're new to wine or a long-time wine enthusiast, we have classes that will stimulate your palate and your thinking about wine.

JOIN THE CLUB

Become a Member and Enjoy the Benefits of Loyalty Rewards

Become a GV Club member and sign-up for loyalty rewards to receive cash rewards on every pucharse you make at Gervasi Vineyard.Learn More and Sign Up →

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