Eataly enlists ahead of San Jose’s food market opening

SAN JOSE – Eataly, a new Italian food market preparing to open in San Jose’s Westfield and Exhibition Center, seeks to hire hundreds of workers for what could be a Silicon Valley destination attraction.

But the food, which aims to take advantage of the curiosity and innovation that are part of Silicon Valley DNA, is looking for employees for a wide variety of roles, said Rafaela Pieroli, head of Eataly in North America.

“We are enlisting,” said Piarulli, Eataly North America’s chief operating officer. “We started the recruitment engine at full speed. The construction is close to completion.”

Eataly’s food market plans to recruit more than 300 workers to work at the nearby Valley Fair location.

“It takes a small army to run a flag position like this,” Pieroli said in an interview with this news organization.

A large variety of employment opportunities are expected to be available for recruits.

“There are jobs available in all areas, servers, general managers, floor managers, chefs, chefs, culinary talent at all levels,” Pieroli said. “We are pleased to expand the size of our team in the US”

Eataly is holding an employment fair on Friday, April 15, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the first floor of the mall, Pieroli said.

“You can work in an area where you can develop a passion for what you do,” Pieroli said. “People want to do something they love. The jobs put our employees in touch with what they love, food. We can win, we can cultivate, in all this passion. People are looking for a purpose.”

The food market will operate on three floors at the Valley Fair. The dining hall will include 45,000 square feet.

“Bringing Eataly illustrates its desire to become a destination-focused mall,” said Bob Stadler, chief executive of Silicon Valley Synergy, a land use consulting firm. “It competes with Santana Row and needs to differentiate itself.”

The unique nature of Operation Eataly – a culinary experience that is more than a restaurant, more shops, more a place to learn about food – could create a new destination for San Jose.

“This will be a very successful lottery,” Stadler said.

But the food is set to open sometime “over the next few months,” Pieroli said, though he has not suggested a more precise time frame.

“We will have two huge restaurants, a whole market, a fresh food counter, a seafood counter, a selection of cheeses, a selection of pasta,” Piroli said.

No matter where people go in the multi-tiered institution, they will be able to see food or drink products.

“You will have such a feeling of being surrounded by lots of food, both in quantity and quality,” Piroli said. “The heroes of Eataly are our products.”

The Eataly experience in this area is designed to be immersive, he added.

“You’ll see artistic products, you’ll see talent, you’ll see people touching food, you’ll see the action involved in producing and presenting food,” Pieroli said. “Our kitchens will be visible. You will see how pasta is made, how bread is made.”

Eataly executives believe the location at Valley Fair – and Silicon Valley – is a great location.

“Valley Fair is a phenomenal center,” Pieroli said. “It’s right in the center of Silicon Valley. People are just drawn to this shopping center. It’s updated, renewed and expanded. It’s pristine and contemporary.”

Eataly also believes it can take advantage of the culture of innovation in Silicon Valley, a unique economic area whose employees have unleashed countless breakthroughs in advanced technologies.

“It’s an innovation that meets curiosity about food,” Pieroli said. “We are excited about staying in Silicon Valley because of the education and sophistication that surrounds us. So many people in Silicon Valley are interested in learning. This is a great platform for us.”

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