Top Chef’s Fabio Viviani Partners with Johnsonville for ‘Dinner Is Served’
Nearly two years ago, a fire destroyed Johnsonville Sausage’s production plant in Watertown, Wis. Fortunately there were no deaths or injuries, but over 100 employees’ financial stability could have been affected. Instead of laying off its employees during rebuilding, management at Johnsonville made the noble decision to keep its Watertown plant workers on the payroll and still cover benefits during the reconstruction process. All Johnsonville asked was that the employees commit to volunteer service in the Watertown community and attend educational training at other Johnsonville sites.
As Johnsonville rose from the ashes, management chose to thank their Watertown employees in a unique way. They partnered with celebrity chef, restaurateur and cookbook author Fabio Viviani, of “Top Chef fame,” to prepare a gourmet Italian meal made with Johnsonville’s products. A young Johnsonville employee was chosen to fly to Los Angeles to train with Viviani to help prepare the meal. The story is documented in Dinner Is Served, an unscripted reality series that captures the personalities behind the experience. Excerpts from the series can be seen here, along with recipes and cooking videos.