The reason for the profile is the recent opening of his Chicago restaurant Mercat a la Planxa. Garces was mentioned along with fellow chefs Marcus Samuelsson, Laurent Gras and Terrance Brennan — all of whom have opened new Chicago restaurants in 2008.
But what about our hometown chef? Here’s what the Sun-Times had to say:
Garces graduated from Chicago’s Kendall College with a degree in culinary arts, but built his hefty resume in New York and Philadelphia at award-winning restaurants.
“I’ve been wanting to get home for 13 years,” Garces says. “Chicago’s come to the forefront as a very modern culinary town. Along with Grant [Achatz of Alinea] and others who work here in town, that’s transformed [this] from a meat-and-potatoes town to a culinary mecca.”
At his two spots in Philadelphia, Tinto and Amada, Garces took bold approaches to Spanish cuisine. He’s taking it farther at the 162-seat Mercat a la Planxa, with grilled-to-order meats and seafood at center stage.
For research, Garces and his team made a pilgrimage to Barcelona, Spain, to sample food inside the city’s famed Mercat de la Boqueria and local tapas joints.
Sounds good to us.
Their kind of town [CST]