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A Florida Dwelling Match for a Pasta Queen—or At Least, the ‘Italian Martha Stewart’

Nadia Caterina Munno is the self-proclaimed The Pasta Queen. It’s a title she’s used over the previous three years to build up a mixed 6 million followers on varied social media platforms, the place she posts boisterous, typically ironic movies of herself prancing round in her huge, blue metal and brass residence kitchen, making Italian meals and laughing at others’ makes an attempt at making Italian meals.

However Ms. Munno, 40, is aiming a lot increased than TikTok superstar. “I need to be the Italian Martha Stewart,” says Ms. Munno. “Every part is in movement to do exactly that.” She already sells The Pasta Queen branded copper cookware in collaboration with Ruffoni on her web site and at William Sonoma (the place the seven-piece set prices about $1,900), and now she is in talks a few frozen meals line, a tv deal and increasing right into a broader vary of textiles, homewares and trend. Her cookbook made the New York Occasions Bestseller checklist in November and he or she’s engaged on a second one.

Identical to Martha Stewart, who is thought for her picture-perfect estates in locations like Connecticut and Maine, Ms. Munno makes use of her home as an vital contributor to her picture as a home goddess. In her movies, she showcases components of the 7,821-square-foot, eight bed room, six toilet mansion she and her husband, Brook Zimmatore, 41, purchased in Clearwater, Fla., for $1.1 million in 2016.

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The stately, French provincial-style property was inbuilt 1920 for Charles Spence, a Michigan-based businessman. Situated on a quiet, leafy road lined with mansions within the Harbor Oaks neighborhood, it was at one level used as housing for nuns; what’s now the primary bed room was a spot for worship, with pews and fluorescent lights, says Tricia Priest, whose mother and father Al and Jeanne Priest purchased it for $65,000 in 1972 and transformed it again to a single household residence. In 2007, the home offered for $1.8 million, in line with public information. 

By the point Ms. Munno and Mr. Zimmatore discovered it, the home had been empty for nearly two years after the proprietor left for California, says Martha Thorn, a real-estate agent with Colwell Banker who had the unique itemizing. The market was down in 2015, but it surely was nonetheless “a heck of a worth,” she says. “When a home sits empty for that lengthy, it reveals.” A part of it had burned and there was mould and termites all over the place, says Ms. Munno. When the value dropped to $1.15 million from $1.25 million, they jumped on it, regardless that they’d been near closing on a unique home within the neighborhood, says Ms. Munno. 

It took a $1.2 million, 10-month renovation involving a whole overhaul of the plumbing, electrical and sewage methods—together with an infusion of huge portions of Italian marble, tiles and furnishings—to get it to its present state. All of the fireplaces, flooring, crown-molding, exterior finishes and home windows had been restored.

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Despite the fact that the renovation occurred pre-The Pasta Queen, the point of interest was the kitchen, now following a $250,000 renovation, a large, virtually 400 sq. foot, brilliant room created by combining two rooms and eradicating an 18-foot wall that held up a lot of the second and third tales of the home. It required constructing two separate partitions and a metal beam to deal with the load of the eliminated load wall. 

Within the heart is a $135,000 customized island by Florence, Italy-based firm Officine Gullo. It’s ocean blue metal with brass trim, with a double oven, six burners, a pasta cooker and an identical hood. The kitchen flooring is weathered Italian marble, there are copper pots and pans made in Italy’s Piedmont area hanging all over the place; ceramic jars are full of wood spoons and rolling pins—all deliberately from Italy, says Ms. Munno. 

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A big formal front room with a playroom and a proper eating room are on both facet of the primary entry hallway, which extends the size of the home and has a black and white chess board marble flooring and brilliant work. The third flooring is the place her household (her father, her brother, her mom and plenty of cousins) keep once they go to from Italy, typically for weeks at a time.

A lined outside patio with white sofas, wicker chairs and a beadboard ceiling results in a swimming pool. Above it, reached by a black spiral stairway, is an 800-square-foot balcony that holds an outside eating space. 

Ms. Munno, carrying one in all her signature shut becoming Dolce & Gabbana attire, with crimson cherries on leopard print, solely eats pasta for lunch—and solely about 100 grams (one cup)—5 days every week. (At the moment she had zucchini and spinach risotto from a brightly painted handmade ceramic bowl at her residence’s kitchen desk.) For dinner she eats very flippantly—simply greens and legumes and no carbs, she says. Ought to she be caught on a desert island with only one meals? Lasagna.  

Ms. Munno was born and raised in Rome, however when she was younger she and her brother would spend months yearly serving to out on her grandfather’s farm, harvesting wheat, corn, tomatoes and grapes. Situated in Santa Maria Capua Vetere in Southern Italy, the farm has been in her household because the late 1700s, and at one level included a pasta manufacturing facility.

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When she turned 14, Ms. Munno says she misplaced curiosity in working round within the filth and as an alternative stayed in Rome along with her mates, moving into theater, modeling and taking opera singing classes. Via her music connections, she met members of a British jazz band, who invited her to go on tour and promote merchandise. She moved to London in 2002 to work for the band and to check communications. She needed to be taught English. “I knew I had an even bigger plan,” she says.

Via mates within the band, she met Mr. Zimmatore, who’s British however who lived world wide, together with Florida, when he was rising up. They married in 2003 and began an organization collectively in 2007 in London, shifting it to Clearwater in 2015 to be nearer to shoppers. Known as Huge Alliance, it creates and distributes content material to amplify company executives’ private manufacturers. 

The corporate’s identify was created by Ms. Munno: “The frequent denominator for Nadia is that all the pieces needs to be large,” says Mr. Zimmatore. (He jokes that he too is changing into greater, because of all of the pasta round the home.)

In early 2020, Ms. Munno went on TikTok to take a look at what one in all her daughters (she and Mr. Zimmatore have 4 kids, ages 4-15) was watching, meaning to delete the app if it appeared inappropriate. She got here throughout a video of somebody making lasagna in what she says was a “blasphemous” method. She saved exploring and located “loads of Italian People cooking pasta dishes incorrectly,” she says.   

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Ms. Munno started posting her personal TikTok movies, typically along with her brother within the background, typically bordering on slapstick, cooking pasta from her household’s recipes and exhibiting exaggerated, mocking reactions to different peoples’ recipes. She has since expanded to Instagram, Fb and YouTube and trademarked the persona of The Pasta Queen—a reputation she got here up with as a result of she felt, given her household’s background proudly owning a pasta manufacturing facility, that she ought to “dominate the area of cooking pasta.”

The pandemic had loads to do along with her success, says Ms. Munno: folks had been caught at residence with their households and watching cooking movies was a solution to join. She says she found this throughout her e book tour this previous fall, when hundreds of readers confirmed up, many telling her their Covid tales.

Ms. Munno applies the identical methods to her new profession as she did in her management branding and content material amplification work. She seems to be at detailed analytics and metrics and spends hours monitoring reactions to her content material. “Loads of it has to do with simply listening to folks,” she says. “I attempt to perceive what’s vital to them.” 


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