Made by Memphians: Franco's Italian Kitchen

Mar 17, 2019 396

BY: Jennifer Biggs

Franco Contaldo knows there’s an easy way to ruin a good Italian dish. “People use too much garlic,” he said. “You want to taste it, but you don’t want it to overpower everything else.” When he makes pesto, he doesn’t even put garlic in it. Before you think him a madman, give his Pesto Delicato recipe at the end of this article a try, and have a look at the video to see how quickly we prepared it. And don’t worry – the final dish gets a bit of garlic. It just doesn’t go in the pesto.

Contaldo is Italian by way of Chicago. The brutal winters were finally too much, and a few years ago he and his wife, Sherry, moved to Memphis, closer to her Covington hometown. In Chicago, Contaldo owned a chain of pizza restaurants. As he expanded through 11 states, he started taking his employees and franchisees to Italy for trips to learn about the food.

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