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Virginia Iovine-Turner (Chef)

Virginia Iovine-Turner was completely uprooted when her family moved to Papamoa for a lifestyle change. She had never lived far from her family, relying on her parents help with the children, while she pursued a corporate career in Wellington. When her children, Marco and Bianca, were 6 and 2, she became convinced that she needed to be more of an accessible mum, so she looked for income from what she had learnt as a child "tied to my mother's apron strings". Virginia's mum loved to cook, so why not introduce others to genuine Italian cuisine?

Her first class was an impromptu one with a group of girlfriends while her mother was staying. Her class had such fun making gnocchi together, they didn't want to leave. She started with classes for kids but their mothers wanted to learn, too! Soon she was gathering groups of happy women around her big bench to absorb the love of the kitchen - the Italian way.

In addition to conducting classes, Virginia also holds demonstrations at Venus around the Bay of Plenty and have a Column with the Weekend Sun. She says she is inspired by the enthusiasm of the many 'foodies' she meets.

Click here to check out Virginia's page.