UK restaurant chain owner Carluccio dies

TV chef dubbed 'Godfather of Italian gastronomy'

(ANSA) - London, November 9 - Antonio Carluccio, TV chef and founder of the popular British chain of Italian restaurants of the same name, has died at the age of 80.
    Salerno-born Carluccio, dubbed the Godfather of Italian gastronomy, opened his first eatery in London in 1981 and went on to form the Carluccio's Caffe' chain across the UK. He got an OBE in 2007 after years of appearing on TV.
    Jamie Oliver, who worked in Carluccio's first restaurant before becoming a household name, paid an emotional tribute to the master chef on Instagram.
    "Hi guys, with great sadness I've heard that Antonio Carluccio passed away this morning.
    "He was my first London boss at the Neal Street restaurant 25 years ago which was an institution and Mecca of wild mushrooms where I had the pleasure of working for him.
    "He was such a charismatic charming don of all things Italian!! Always hanging out the front door of the restaurant with a big fat Cigar a glass of something splendid and his amazing fuzzy white hair." Oliver credited Carluccio for getting him "hooked" on pasta and said that he found him "so very inspirational".
    "I also had the pleasure of making and producing his TV show the Two Greedy Italians with his life long best friend and partner in crime @gennarocontaldo who were hilarious together!!" he added.
    "He was an amazing food ambassador that will be sorely missed.
    "My love goes out to his partner Sabina his family and his dear and close friends on this very sad day. Viva Antonio Carluccio. Cook a feast up there mate."