LaBelle Winery Taps Acclaimed Chef Peter Agostinelli as Culinary Director
A familiar New Hampshire winery has a fresh new face on the culinary team.
LaBelle Winery recently announced their new culinary director, Peter Agostinelli, a celebrated leader in the industry. With more than 20 years of expertise and experience, Agostinelli is a great complement to the talented culinary team at LaBelle’s.
Founder Amy LaBelle emphasizes the value of working with talented industry professionals. “Acquiring top talent is paramount,” she says. “Peter’s expertise in the industry and depth of knowledge and experience will allow him to continue to elevate LaBelle’s culinary-related programs to a place we’ve always envisioned them going — and then some.”
Agostinelli’s job will be two-fold: overseeing LaBelle Winery’s food and beverage operations at its locations across the state, and helping co-owners Amy LaBelle and Cesar Arboleda with their goals of crafting the most creative, excellent and approachable menus in New England — in hopes of providing the best possible dining experience to their guests.
“His passion, creativity and commitment to excellence align with our mission of graciously accommodating customers by offering unparalleled experiences and outstanding wine and food. We are immensely pleased to have Peter at LaBelle’s culinary helm and so proud to bring this excellence to our community,” LaBelle continues.
LaBelle Winery’s company encompasses many locations across the state, including two restaurants, banquet facilities, a specialty market, catering and meal services, artisan culinary products and specialty beverages.
Food has always been an important aspect of Agostinelli’s life — starting with spending time in his grandfather’s kitchen. While his cuisine is grounded in Italian culture, it is complemented by global flavors and techniques.
Agostinelli says he’s excited to bring his passion for New England cuisine coupled with global influences back to southern New Hampshire. “I’m looking forward to marrying LaBelle’s award-winning wines with exciting new dishes, and some culinary classics,” he says.
With an extensive background — including experience at several critically acclaimed restaurants in Greater Boston and New Hampshire — Agostinelli will bring great insight to the winery.
“My love of food stems from my love of the ingredients used to prepare it,” Agostinelli says. “A perfect tomato or a beautiful piece of pork inspires me. When you are given the gift of something that so many people have had a part in growing or raising, it is the responsibility of the chef to do something with that item to honor it.”
Amy LaBelle founded LaBelle Winery in 2005, after leaving her job as a corporate attorney. After several years, in order to expand production, she and her husband, Cesar Arboleda, moved the winemaking operation to a barn behind their home. There, LaBelle produced award-winning wines for over four years, before moving to the winery’s current location in Amherst, New Hampshire, that includes a restaurant, a wedding and event venue, an art gallery, a retail store and tasting room and an on-site vineyard.
In September 2017, LaBelle Winery’s Portsmouth tasting room and retail store opened. They have several exciting new openings coming up this year — LaBelle Winery Derry will open an event center and golf course in April, Americus restaurant and LaBelle Market will open in May, and the Tasting Room will open in July.