At the age of 17, Tony moved to Melbourne to join his elder brothers Paul and Peter at Royal Arcade restaurant Luciano’s. He then moved on to start an apprenticeship at The Stokehouse, St Kilda in 1997 where he learned the culinary craft alongside well known Chefs such as Michael Lambie, Paul Raynor, Jean Gorde Allen and Justin Pola.
Tony began working with Robert Cunningham after his apprenticeship and worked his way up to junior Sous Chef. During this time, Tony established his love for Chinese and Southeast Asian cuisines, which he explored while travelling through the region in 2002 and again in 2009.
Tony moved on for a stint at Ezard in the CBD before moving back to St Kilda to work with Chef Michael Lambie once again at Circa. The two developed a great friendship which continued when Tony joined him at Taxi Dining Room in Federation Square in 2004 and at the age of 26 was appointed Head Chef. At the end of 2009, Tony – under Taxi Dining Room’s same umbrella company, Sovereign Hotel Group – opened Barkers Wine Bar & Bistro in Hawthorn, where his Modern Australian gourmet cuisine challenged the notion of ‘pub grub’ and brought a gastro pub experience to the local area.
After a successful 12 months at Barkers, Tony returned home to Taxi to takeover the role as Executive Chef. Despite training in traditional French and British cooking techniques, Tony’s breadth of experience in the different cuisines of the world has led to him continuing his signature gastronomic style of Modern Australian.
Since his return to Taxi Tony has led a number cooking classes at South Melbourne Market and the Queen Victoria Market and made several media appearances including Channel 10’s The Circle, Channel 9’s Postcards, The Age Epicure and many more. He continues to work closely with local producers to source quality, seasonal produce. Tony has well and truly made his mark on the menu, and Taxi Dining Room as a whole.