Seared Bass with Corn Polenta and Tomato Compote
Make This Recipe From Tony Quartaro of The Bristol in Chicago, IL
Tony Quartaro can count on one hand how many days off he’s had since becoming chef de cuisine at The Bristol in Chicago last April.
Quartaro left his position at Fedora in New York City, moving to the Midwest to be closer to his fiancée’s family. They’ll marry next week, then, according to Quartaro, “I’ll have six consecutive days of vacation” for his honeymoon in the British Virgin Islands.
A native of Ames, Iowa, the 28-year-old chef started his career in Lawrence, Kansas, then moved to San Francisco, working first at Nopa and later at A16, where he met chef Nate Appleman; when Appleman left San Francisco to open Pulino’s, he invited Quartaro to join him. As at A16, at Pulino's he gravitated toward whole animal butchery and pasta making, two skills he uses daily at The Bristol.
For Sous Chef Series, he made a memorable midsummer dish that hints at his Iowa roots and as well as his interest in Italian food, cooking polenta in corn milk and accompanying it with a crisp-skinned piece of black bass.
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