• Certified Piedmontese

Benjamin Maides: Head Chef at Casa Bovina

Updated: Jun 8

Nationally Recognized by the James Beard Foundation, Chef Benjamin Maides is bringing his talent to Casa Bovina. He sparked an interest in cooking when, as a child, he watched his mother and grandmother cook. One of James' strongest memories from his early childhood in Switzerland is the wood fire that his grandmother used to cook and heat her home. His passion for quality ingredients grew there as well. Swiss cuisine focuses on having the highest caliber of products to go into their food while steering away from anything processed. This philosophy has left an impact on Chef Ben's cooking career and life.

Chef Ben attended culinary school in Omaha from 2004-2006. After working in some seasonal restaurants in Aspen and Vail, Chef Ben landed the opportunity to train at Bouchon in the Napa Valley. Bouchon is owned and run by Thomas Keller, a world-renowned Chef that Chef Ben says he looks up to, especially when it comes to philosophies about food.

To expand his culinary expertise, he continued traveling around the country and the world, working for highly-rated restaurants in California and Italy. These are where he broadened his horizons on fine dining, tasting menus, and fresh pasta. Chef Ben then returned to Omaha, where he opened Au Courant Regional Kitchen to showcase his signature personal style of cuisine.

Chef Ben focuses on finding the best and highest quality ingredients to feature in his dishes - a big reason he enjoys cooking. Chef Ben also enjoys creating an enjoyable experience for diners.

Using this quality farm-to-table approach is an aspect that Chef Ben brings into his personal and professional lifestyle. He and his family apply this principle through their farm, where they live in Omaha. On their farm, they mainly focus on tomatoes of the heirloom variations, especially the uncommon varieties. They would like to continue to grow and expand into even more uncommon and less well-known tomato varieties. Above all, their focus is the way their products are cultivated.

Chef Ben is now excited to be the Head Chef at Casa Bovina under Certified Piedmontese. Casa Bovina will bring the flavors of a modern Italian Steakhouse in a rustic and refined atmosphere. It will bring together the prestigious meats of Certified Piedmontese with other quality ingredients that Chef Ben either makes or spends time finding. To get these artisan products, Chef Ben sorts through research, connects with local producers, tastes, and works with each product before deciding whether or not to use them in his cooking.

When it comes to the dining experience Chef Ben doesn't just care about the food, he also cares about the furniture. In his free time, he also enjoys woodworking. Chef Ben's passion for this is creating functional furniture that will be well-used and could enhance the experience of a meal, like a dining room table. His favorite type of wood to work with is locally milled Black Walnut.

For the home chef, he recommends this advice, "Cooking is repetition: the more you do it, the better you get at it."

With all of this, we know that Casa Bovina is getting a well-recognized Chef that will only serve the absolute best food possible.

If you are in or around the Lincoln area, Casa Bovina is a private dining restaurant that offers a dining experience unlike any other, booked by reservation only.

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