top of page


Author photo of Mona Talbott.


mona talbott

Mona Talbott, along with her partner Kate Arding, is the Co-founder and Culinary Director of Talbott & Arding Cheese and Provisions, a premier culinary destination in New York’s Hudson Valley.

Mona’s culinary career began in the reforestation camps of British Columbia. For five seasons, she worked as a cook in these camps, the camaraderie and verve of feeding a crowd fueling her fledgling passion. In 1993, she formalized her training when she graduated with
highest honors from the Western Culinary Institute in Portland, Oregon.

After completing her studies, Mona interned and was then hired to cook at Chez Panisse Cafe. The Berkeley restaurant, already a celebrated culinary institution, would become foundational to her career. It was here that she learned an invaluable philosophy that continues to guide her today: the beauty of simplicity and a reverence for provenance. The Chez Panisse ethos prized food beyond the plate, spotlighting the

farmers, foragers, and makers as well as the rituals of gathering around the table and it was this sense of interconnectedness that further propelled Mona on her culinary path.

After five years in Berkeley, she traveled and worked in restaurants in Paris, Bordeaux, and Brittany, France further embracing the straightforwardness of cuisine à la bonne femme. When she returned to the States, she established herself as a private chef and caterer to a laudable group of clients in New York City. It was also at this time that she visited and
became enchanted by the Hudson Valley.


In 2006, Alice Waters chose Mona to be the Founding Executive Chef of the groundbreaking Rome Sustainable Food Project at the American Academy in Rome. Mona set out to build a kitchen program that would nourish and support the work and conviviality of the Academy’s community while guided by the Roman table—flavorful, seasonal food that spoke of its source. The purpose of the program was twofold: feed the Academy’s members and use the
kitchen as an educational nexus.


During her five year tenure at the Academy, Mona penned two cookbooks, Biscotti and Zuppe: Recipes from the Kitchen of the American Academy in Rome. She’s also featured in Coco: 10 World-Leading Masters Choose 100 Contemporary Chefs (Phaidon) and has contributed to the New York Times, Bon Appétit, and Saveur among others.

In December 2014, Mona and Kate opened Talbott & Arding, a cheese and provisions shop with an in-house, by-scratch cafe and bakery. The prepared and housemade larder foods are a culmination of what Mona has learned over the years: thoughtful, nourishing, yet sophisticated food that celebrates craftsmanship and seasonal ingredients. With the opening
of the new Talbott & Arding location, Mona will be able to focus on her other passion—education—by launching in-person and online classes as well as food demos and workshops.

Mona and Kate are at work on a forthcoming book.

bottom of page