Compliments of the Chef with Tony Priolo

Compliments of the Chef with Tony Priolo

This week, Chefs Feed met up with renowned chef Priolo at his restaurant, Piccolo Sogno, in Chicago's River West.

December 6, 2013
CF: I'm best known for my _______ style of cooking but I can make one hell of a _______. 
TP: Italian; matzo ball soup 

CF: A few words your sous chef would use to describe you. 
TP: The best (crazy) chef ever. 

CF: What are you most excited about right now in your restaurant? 
TP: All of the great squashes and pumpkins that are coming into season. One dish I'm using them in is rosticciana, or braised beef short ribs, over squash purée with sautéed greens, red wine, and aromatic fall vegetables. 

CF: Which chef would you drop everything to stage with? 
TP: I'd love to spend a day with Giuliano Bugialli in Italy. He's an Italian cookbook author and he's created some amazing books. If not him, it would be my grandmother, knowing what I know now. When I was younger, I'd visit her every day after school and watch while she made everything from scratch. 

CF: Insider tip from the kitchen for diners. 
TP: When dining out, keep in mind how long things take to cook. For example, a whole fish might take 30 minutes. 

CF: Message to professional food critics. 
TP: It's best to hold off on reviewing a restaurant until it gets its footing. Try and wait a little while. A kid can't walk right away, right? It's the same thing for a restaurant. 

CF: One piece of advice for aspiring young chefs. 
TP: Never give up. Don't get discouraged with the long hours and the fact that you'll be working when everyone else wants to go out. 

CF: Is there anything you don't like? 
TP: I pretty much love everything and there's not much I won't cook with. Well, except for bugs. 

CF: Thick or thin patty? 
TP: Thick. 

CF: Go-to shift drink? 
TP: A 312 beer at Cobra Lounge. 

CF: What's for family meal tonight? 
TP: Chicken, salad, and pasta. We actually do a different combination of this every day.