RESERVATIONS: 1-888-PECHANGA ARRIVAL NIGHTS

FRANCESCO DI CAUDO

Pechanga Resort & Casino, the largest resort/casino in the western United States, welcomes Francesco Di Caudo as its new head chef at Paisano’s Italian Restaurant. With nearly 20 years of culinary experience, he most recently worked for three years as the senior sous chef at a renowned Italian dining establishment inside one of Las Vegas’ most well-known resorts. Di Caudo also spent more than six years at a handful of other high end Nevada restaurants, as well as eight years working his way up the gastronomic ladder at restaurants and resorts in Sicily, Venice and Milan, Italy. Guests will find Di Caudo’s Italian fare to consist of extremely fresh ingredients like those available in his home country.

Growing up in Sicily in a family of farmers, Francesco unwittingly started his culinary career when he was five years old. “We followed the seasons as far as what we ate at different times of the year. Because of that, my parents and my aunts and uncles passed on their knowledge in a lot of different areas of cooking,” he says. He recounts that in wintertime, the men in the family would round up several pigs and chickens to slaughter and prepare for food. This introduced him to making prosciutto and sausage. In the fall, his family and surrounding neighbors harvested grapes from their vineyards, crushed and fermented them to make wine. Di Caudo was encouraged to help. His uncle was an expert bread maker so the young chef-in-training learned how to make Italian breads and Sicilian cookies. “My grandmother made fresh pastas from scratch and I would watch her grind the wheat, roll the dough and meticulously cut various shapes. Some of the pastas require more rolling after cutting to make their final shapes. She did it all.” At 13, Di Caudo elected to go to hotelier school to learn about the professional restaurant business and never looked back.

He says authentic Italian food consists of simple, fresh ingredients where each flavor stands on its own. The Temecula area was quite appealing to Di Caudo because it reminds him of Sicily where fresh citrus, tomatoes, wine and other native ingredients are readily available.

Hours of Operation

Sunday, Monday, Thursday:
5PM-10PM
Friday-Saturday:
5PM-11PM
Closed Tuesdays, Wednesdays

Reservations

Reservations are welcome, please call (951) 770-8506.

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