Video: Chef Ryan Poli talks Tavernita, seagans and cutting up 500 pounds of salmon; plus The Lobster Zone

September 14, 2011

Six months ago, chef Ryan Poli announced he was leaving Perennial to open, along with the people who brought Mercadito to Chicago, a new restaurant called Tavernita.

The soon-to-open restaurant (it's now doing the time-honored Chicago tradition of waiting for permits) will, says Poli, feature a Spanish-inspired menu (with Latin influences), small plates and an overall vibe aimed at "engaging people at the table with one another."

On his way to becoming an "A-List" chef in Chicago, Poli cut his teeth doing everything from hacking up 500 pounds of salmon to working at the famous French Laundry in Napa Valley.

Here, he talks about his career, how chefs are inspired and why his girlfriend's "seagan" diet drives him a little crazy.

 

IN OTHER NEWS . . .

Was up at The Brat Stop in Kenosha on Monday. It's one of those places where the sign promoting CHEESE is bigger than the sign with the actual store/restaurant name. They have your standard brats, Polish and . . . cheese soup. But, then, they also serve lobster. It's only $2 — if you catch 'em yourself. Beats a stuffed animal.