Wednesday, August 4, 2010

New Tru Chef Joins 'Taste of the Nation' Lineup

Tru Executive Chef/partner Anthony Martin (Photos: Tru)

The new executive chef/partner at fancy four-star Tru loves Lil’ Wayne, rides a hog to work every day and once waited four-and-a-half hours at Kuma's Corner for a Black Sabbath Burger (topped with blackening spice, chili, pepper Jack and red onion).

So it is no surprise that the 29-year-old Anthony Martin—who turns 30 on Sept. 23—is adding a bit of spice to the menus once ruled over by former executive chef Rick Tramanto.

Make no mistake. Dude's got some pretty big shoes to fill, as Tramanto helped put Tru on the culinary map with former executive pastry chef Gale Gand. But as a fearless former visual artist whose fascination with architecture creeps ever so often into his creations, we have no doubt he'll succeed.

Chef Martin's white sturgeon "caviar," with avocado and house-made hazelnut crackers, is the dish he'll serve at "Taste of the Nation."

Since assuming the executive chef position earlier this spring, Martin spends approximately 14 hours a day in the kitchen, so that leaves little time to participate in charity events. But he managed to sneak away in May for a few hours to work the room at Food & Wine's annual Toast of the Town at the Field Museum. He treated guests to his signature appetizer of white sturgeon "caviar," which sits atop a creamy avocado puree, and is accompanied by house-made hazelnut crackers.

The dish went over so well with guests that he decided to do it again for Share Our Strength's annual Taste of the Nation benefit, taking place 7pm August 12 at the Aragon Ballroom. It'll be one of many passed hors d'oeuvres served that night.

Martin will be joined by a number of local chefs and mixologists, who will serve "street food"-style appetizers and hand-crafted cocktails. The list is impressive all right, including the likes of chefs Laurent Gras (L2O), Mindy Segal (Hot Chocolate), Jimmy Bannos, Jr. (The Purple Pig) and David DiGregorio (Osteria via Stato), plus bar stars Bridget Albert, Lynn House (Blackbird) and Charles Joly (The Drawing Room).

Tickets range $95-$225 and can be purchased here.

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