Chef Jessie Ayala
A simple passion
I have simple passion. Great food. My personal belief is that you can create delicious food using very simple ingredients. The key is what ingredients you use, not how many. While my schooling tought me French cuisine and cooking, I lean towards Italian and Mediterianian flavors in my cooking. I love to add in different elements to make each dish unique.
My passion for food started in high school. My home economics teacher recognized my potential and invited me to chaperone a tour of the South Seattle Community College Culinary Arts program. I enrolled the next quarter and started on my food adventure. While attending Culinary School, I gained experience working at the Columbia Tower Club, Chandlers and The Crab Pot in Seatte. Once I completed the program I was offered a position as the chef at my aunt's Bed and Breakfast in Prosser, WA. This concpet was well ahead of it's time. I was able to create French style cuisine and work with local wineries to make wine pairings. At the time, Prosser only had around 4 wineries (it now has somewhere in the neighborhood of 35). While there, I was voted Lower Valley's Favorite Chef. Since then, I have built my reputation on quality and flavor. My wife and I opened our own restaurant in downtown Prosser in 2010. Tuscany Downtown served rustic bistro style Italan cuisine. We specialized in wine and food pairings and made great partnerships with the local wineries. While we decided to close the restaurant in 2013 we continue to be passionate about the food we created and the relationships we formed with the local businesses, residents and tourists.
After returning to the Prosser area on several visits, we realized how missed Tuscany Downtown is. People crave the simple but impactful flavors. So, we decided to bring those flavors back in the form of a mobile bistro and catering company. That is how Ciao Wagon came to be. In 2020 we were approached and committed to the idea of opening a restaurant in the new Osprey Point Marketplace going in at the Port of Pasco once construction is complete. We are still committed to this and plan to open Ciao Kitchen as a casual fine dining restauraunt and full bar.
In 2020 I was diagnoed with COVID Pnuemonia and spent 2 months in the hospital and in an induced coma for some of that time being on a resperator. I was given a a very dim prognosis and the oppurtunity to recieve ECMO as an experimental treatment. After recieving that treatment, my recovery began. While in the hospital, all I had was time to think. My passion for food was renewed and refreshed. I was mentally making recepies and plans for the future. Recovery has been difficult but rewarding as I have had much to be grateful for and much to look forward to. In the summer of 2021 we were approached by a local building owner about possibily opening a location in downtown Pasco. We thought this would be a fantastic oppurtunity to offer some of our favorite Ciao Wagon dishes on a regular consistant basis to our customer base. Ciao Trattoria was born. The Trrattoria is a fresh food served quickly concept with the ability to eat in.