Lidia Bastianich Net Worth: A Journey from War-Torn Yugoslavia to American Success!

Born on February 21, 1947, Lidia Giuliana Matticchio Bastianich is a well-known Italian-American chef, restaurant, author, and television host. Since 1998, Bastianich, who specializes in Italian and Italian-American cooking, has regularly contributed to cookery programs on public television.

Lidia Bastianich Net Worth

The American chef, restaurateur, and writer Lidia Bastianich is worth $16 million. Working as an Italian cuisine specialist chef has contributed to Lidia Bastianich’s wealth. Since the late 1990s, she has frequently appeared on food shows.

She has also hosted a number of her own programs, including “Lidia’s Italy” (2007–2010), “Lidia Celebrates America” (2011–2018), and “Lidia’s Kitchen” (2013–2020).

Tanya and Joe, Lidia’s children, are her business partners, and she owns multiple Italian restaurants around the United States, including Becco and Del Posto in Manhattan.

In addition to publishing her memoir, “My American Dream: A Life of Love, Family, and Food,” in 2018, Bastianich is the author of multiple cookbooks, including “Lidia’s Italian-American Kitchen” (2001), “Lidia’s Family Table” (2004), and “Lidia’s Commonsense Italian Cooking: 150 Delicious and Simple Recipes Anyone Can Master” (2013).

Lidia Bastianich Net Worth

Lidia Bastianich Early Life

On February 21, 1947, Lidia Giuliana Matticchio was born in Pula, Pola, Italy. A few months later, the town was renamed as Istria County, Croatia. With her mother Erminia, father Vittorio, and brother Franco, Lidia was raised in the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (where the family’s last name was altered to Motika).

In 1956, Lidia and Franco fled with their mother to Trieste, Italy. After crossing the border at night, Vittorio soon joined the rest of his family, and the family resided briefly with Nina, Lidia’s aunt, who was a cook. At the time, the family resided in the Trieste refugee camp Risiera di San Sabba.

The Motika family immigrated to the US after their claim for displaced persons was accepted after two years. In 1958, the family moved to North Bergen, New Jersey, and then to Queens, New York. Lidia used to work part-time at the bakery owned by Christopher Walken’s father when she was a teenager.

Lidia Bastianich Philanthropy

Lidia supports the Adopt-A-Future program of the United Nations Association of the United States of America and is a member of the non-profit groups Women Chefs and Restaurateurs and Les Dames d’Escoffier.

In addition, Bastianich has thrown benefit dinners for the UN Development Fund for Women and BoysGrow, two groups he supports. Lidia has participated in the Italian American Committee on Education and is a member of the Distinguished Board of the National Organization of Italian American Women.

Lidia Bastianich Personal Life

At her sixteenth birthday celebration, Lidia met Felice “Felix” Bastianich, with whom she got married in 1966. Son Joseph was born in 1968, and daughter Tanya followed in 1972. After Lidia and Felice separated in 1998, he gave Joe and Tanya ownership of his business interests.

Felice passed away in 2010. 2011 saw Maria Carmela Farina file a $5 million lawsuit against Lidia, claiming the chef enticed her to relocate from Italy to the United States with the promise of a $600-a-week position managing Bastianich’s restaurants and television ventures. Farina took care of Lidia’s elderly neighbor for six years without receiving compensation, in contrast to the promised work.

Because Bastianich had provided Farina with accommodation and board in addition to health insurance, the claim was dismissed in 2012. However, in 2014, a Manhattan appeals court restored the case, finding that Farina was entitled to payment for her services.

Lidia Bastianich Awards and Accolades

Lidia was honored with the “Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America” James Beard Award in 1996 as well as the Woman of the Year/Innovation Award, Restaurant Category, from the Women’s Institute of the Center for Food and Hotel Management in 1987.

Her other honors from the James Beard Foundation include “Best Chef in New York” in 1999, “Best Outstanding Chef” in 2002, and Best Cooking Show for “Lidia’s Italy” in 2009.

In addition, she received Best Special recognition for “Lidia Celebrates America: Home for the Holidays,” “Lidia Celebrates America: Holiday for Heroes,” and “Lidia Celebrates America: Homegrown Heroes” in 2016, 2017, and 2018, respectively.

In addition to her three Taste Awards—the Pioneer Award in 2012 and 2016 for “Lidia Celebrates America” and the Best Food Program Television award in 2017—Bastianich won Daytime Emmys for Outstanding Culinary Host in 2013 and 2018. Senator George Onorato named her “The First Lady of Italian Cuisine and Restaurants in the United States” in 2002.

She has also won the Sandretto Re Rebaudengo Foundation’s StellaRe Prize (2017), the Culinary Institute of America’s Master of the Aesthetics of Gastronomy Award (2019), and the Premio Artusi from the Scientific Committee of Casa Artusi (2019).

Lidia Bastianich Real Estate

Lidia and her mother, who is a widow, have been in a 3,624 square foot home in Queens, New York’s Douglaston area for more than 30 years. On the land, Bastianich raises an abundance of herbs and vegetables. It should come as no surprise that the house has a sizable kitchen—Lidia used the almost 500 square foot area to film some of her early TV series.

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