Victoria Cosford has been cooking all her life – but it took a trip to Italy in her late 20’s to transform passion into profession. She fell in love with an Umbrian chef who trained her to take over the kitchen of his restaurant in the centre of Florence and even when they broke up she stayed on, working with other chefs in other restaurants for the next few years. All this is the subject of her first book, ‘Amore and Amaretti: A Tale of Love and Food in Tuscany’, published in 2010 by Wakefield Press and launched that year at the Byron Bay Writers Festival.
Victoria has been living in the Byron Shire for the last 16 years, much of it spent working for The Byron Shire Echo, where she was initially working as an advertising sales rep. before writing news stories. Her Food Columns – one a week pumped out for over ten years – were one of the more popular sections of The Echo. For eight years she was regional restaurant reviewer for Fairfax’s annual Good Food Guide, several years reviewing pub restaurants for the now defunct SMH Good Pub Food Guide as well as reviewer for the Brisbane Good Food Guide. She was also co-writer for Sample magazine for the several years it ran, contributing stories on local far north coast farmers and producers.
These days she works as a personal chef, bakes cakes, does occasional catering, writes about food and travel, and teaches Italian cooking, She also writes a wine blog for the website of Code38, Jeff Toering’s state-of-the-art wine knife (or waiters friend), which involves the pleasurable task of interviewing sommeliers the world over and finding out what they love to drink. Victoria holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Canberra’s ANU in languages – French, Italian, German, Dutch and English – and speaks Italian fluently. She spends a large proportion of the time thinking about what to cook and what to write!