It's now known who Strategic Hospitality has tapped for the third iteration of The Catbird Seat, as the restaurant group has announced that longtime Chicago chef Ryan Poli will take the helm. Poli replaces current chef Trevor Moran, who in September was announced as Rene Redzepi's pick to lead the charge on the reconceptualization of his world famous Copenhagen restaurant Noma.
Poli had been on a bit of a hiatus as of late, having abruptly vacated his executive chef position at Mercadito Hospitality's Tavernita, Barcito and Little Market Brasserie in Chicago in October of 2013 to travel, "reconnect, reset, and get back to cooking." But he recently turned back up in the Windy City, running a series of pop-up dinners that just finished up this past weekend.
Poli's hiring continues the deep relationship between Strategic Hospitality and the Chicago restaurant scene. Josh Habiger (the group's current culinary director and half of the opening executive chef team at The Catbird Seat), Rene De Leon (executive chef at Le Sel), Enoch Simpson (sous chef at Le Sel) and Alex Reed (GM at Le Sel) are just a few of Strategic's team members that cut their teeth in Chicago.
Moran's last day at Catbird will be Dec. 21, with the restaurant taking their usual winter holiday break, reopening under Poli on Jan. 20, 2016.