OMG A New Yorker Is Coming to The Peninsula!
So a sous chef at Eleven Madison Park, that's like, what in Chicago terms? Rick Bayless plus Grant Achatz and Graham Elliot and a garde manger to be named later? But even then, it's not really the same, is it, because after all... it's not New York.... We're not mocking The Peninsula or its newly-hired chef, Lee Wolen, here, but rather the second city attitude that has the press swooning that someone from Eleven! Madison! Park! is coming to Chicago. We have all due respect for EMP, Phillip Foss tells us that their cookbook is the shizzle (we don't expect to be making anything from it ourselves any time soon), but let's look at where else Lee Wolen has worked. He worked at Butter under Ryan Poli in Chicago, and at Moto which is also, let us doublecheck, in Chicago. Why, it's almost as if he had an impressive resume from Chicago before he worked in New York that got him his job at 11MadPa or OneoneMork or whatever its acronym is. So we welcome him back to the restaurant town second to nobody's city, congratulate him on his steady rise which has now landed him in the lead spot at the hotel that gave us Graham Elliot and Curtis Duffy, and look forward to what he does once his menus officially debut in September at The Lobby, which has replaced gone-for-good Avenues as the lead dining venue in the property.