Marcello is a first generation Italian American, South Philly born and raised. His mother hailed from Bisenti in Abruzzo and his father’s family is from Calabria.
He began working in kitchens at a very young age, paying his dues as a dishwasher and working his way onto the line a few years later. He has two decades of restaurant experience and began Valente’s in 2017 as a mobile vending and catering outfit with the goal of transitioning to a brick and mortar location.
He does not want to set the culinary world on fire, nor is he in the business to win James Beard awards. He is motivated by the desire to keep the memories of his family’s matriarch’s alive through food and build a lasting business that he can someday leave to his children.
Jamie Png has worked as a cheesemonger, cheesemaker, and cheese educator in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. An Australian transplant, Jamie earned a masters in Food Studies from NYU, and is based in Philadelphia. She loves visiting other cheesemakers and getting to know their products, and is excited to share some of her favourites with Valente’s customers. Some of the cheese businesses she’s worked for include Di Bruno Bros, Cherry Grove Farm, and Cheese Journeys. Jamie was also part of the opening crew of Valley Shepherd Creamery’s Meltkraft in Reading Terminal Market, where her hand-stretched fresh mozzarella was chosen as the Philadelphia Inquirer’s cheese of the month.
Jonathan was born and raised in Haddon Twp, NJ, where he was the youngest of 3 children and the only boy. He was raised on the Italian cuisine of his grandmother, Florence D’Anna, and his father.
He began working in restaurants at the age of 15, starting as a dishwasher and working his way up to a cook. He opened and worked for Grand Lux Cafe in Cherry Hill, where he was certified in all of the prep and line stations. He then moved onto Catelli Duo taking a position as the Head Line Cook and graduating to Sous Chef. Before taking time off to explore South Korea, he joined the American pub, Otts in Medford, as the Chef and Kitchen Manager. Upon returning to the States, he was named the new Sous Chef of Valente’s.
Most recently, Arnab Maitra worked as a Sous Chef at Porta. Previously, he cooked at Osteria and was a Sous Chef at Pizzeria Vetri. Occasionally, he still moonlights for Vetri. He is the Chef and Partner at the mobile pizza business, Pizza Crime, which can be seen at Farmers Markets across South Jersey.
He studied Culinary Management at the Art Institute of Philadelphia.