289: Becoming a person of value with Chef Dustin Valette


This is a two-part interview starting with Chef Dustin Vallette and ending with his Brother Aaron Garzini. Dustin Vallette and Aaron Garzini are the co-owners of Valette Healdsburg.

The vision for their restaurant came into the frame over 15 years ago while at their farther’s house enjoying a glass of wine.

They both went on their own way, Dustin learning the back of the house, Aaron learning the front of the house, only to reunite and bring their vision to reality. Since opening Valette in 2015 they have received incredible accolades from around the industry.

Show notes…


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The Conversation

  • Know what you want and go after it with a vengeance.
  • Have a vision, right it down, and set goals that will get you there.
  • Become a person of value. Knowledge is power.
  • Empower your people.
  • Make the most of your time.

Career Challenge or Failure

  • You need to hold your food to a standard of excellence.
  • The only way you know your food is excellent is if you taste it.
  • When Dustin was on the line he forgot to taste his food, and the chef came down hard on him when it was over seasoned. “An assumption is never good enough.” You need to know the food is right.

Knowledge bombs

  1. Which “it factor” habit, trait, or characteristic you believe most contributes to your success?

    • His ability to push it.
  2. What is your biggest weakness?

    • Patience.
  3. What is one piece of advice you have for leading others?

    • Be the person in front and set the example.
    • work harder, longer, and better than everyone else.
  4. What’s one question you ask or thing you look for during an interview? 

    • Higher people that want to be better than you.
  5. What’s a current challenge? How are you dealing with it?

    • Sourcing good quality products.
    • educate people.
  6. What’s one thing (besides food) your restaurant does well and separates you from other restaurants?

    • Hiring people who want it.
  7. What’s one book we must read to become a better person or restaurant owner?

  8. What’s one piece of technology you’ve adopted in your restaurant and how has it influence operations?

    • Excel Spreadsheets
  9. With all the knowledge you have now if you could go back in time and give your past self one piece of business advice, What would it be and why?

    • Push it harder
  10. What is one question you think should be added to this interview?

  • What are the keys to success
    1. Make a game plan for the next day
    2. Wake up and have a snap to your step
    3. Push yourself every day
    4. Ask yourself how you can be better than everyone else
    5. Know you downfalls and improve them

Contact Info


Thanks for Listening!

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Huge thanks to Chef Dustin Valette for joining me for another awesome episode. Until next time!