Most Vancouverites will recognize the name Umberto Menghi, the critically-acclaimed chef behind some of Vancouver’s best Italian restaurants. Turns out, recognition for him goes much further than the city limits. Today, the restaurant Giardino announced that Menghi will receive the Order of the Star of Italy.

This prestigious award is to recognize expatriates or foreigners who make an ‘outstanding contribution to the promotion and preservation of Italy heritage abroad’. Who are some past winners? Well, Frank Sinatra is on the list, as well as the current Princess of Monaco.

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Menghi was recognized for being an ‘ambassador of the finest Italian cuisine in Vancouver and British Columbia at large’. Plus, he runs a cooking school in Tuscany, Italy that showcases his devotion to Italian cuisine. Basically, he’s earned the nod of an entire country for his efforts.

And we couldn’t be happier for him! Congratulations, Mr. Menghi, here’s to many more years of enjoying your delicious food. Heck, maybe we’ll even order up a few pasta dishes this weekend.