Darlene and James, the new owners of Cote d’ Azur, moved to Naples so they could be near their son and his family.
James was trained in small restaurants in New Jersey, San Diego and San Francisco. He attended the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco. James worked with many pioneers of California Cuisine such as Jeremiah Towers and Alice Waters of Chez Panisse.
He also worked with Andre Mena, a protégé of Paul Bocuse, in San Diego after completion of his culinary degree. Later he was hired as Chef de Cuisine at the Hotel Del Coronado in San Diego. After 11 years as working Executive Chef at the Del Coronado, he, his wife Darlene and son Tom moved to Monterey California. As Executive Chef of the Monterey Plaza Hotel and Spa for 20 years, James hosted many annual food events featuring world-class chefs for Pebble Beach Wine and Food, Masters of Wine and Food and the Cooking for Solutions event at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Some of the chefs James has hosted over the years include Sam Choy, James Dodge, Wolfgang Puck and Thomas Keller among many others.
James and Darlene are very happy to be living in beautiful Southwest Florida. Especially since they own, what they believe to be, one of the finest restaurants in the area.
We first dined at Cote d’Azur with family and immediately fell in love with the restaurant. It took us back to our early days working in small French restaurants. Being able to meet new friends and see how they enjoy the food is an amazing experience. The joy of happy guests is what cooking is all about. At Cote d’Azur it’s always been something very special. Darlene and I are so happy to be able to carryon that tradition.
Come and visit Cote d’Azur, enjoy the time together and share some great food and wine. “Every meal together should be a sweet memory.”