Former Catbird Seat executive chef Ryan Poli is back in Nashville, according to a press release. After almost a three-year hiatus, when the chef trekked through Asia and landed a position working in Bali, Poli returns to the Nashville dining scene — where he’ll be overseeing and reimagining all things culinary at the Bobby Hotel downtown.
Poli will transform all four culinary and cocktail concepts at the Bobby “before the end of the year”. The Bobby first opened in spring of 2018 — a mashup of country and urban appeal, crowned with a rooftop bus and sitting atop Bobby’s Garage by Printers Alley.
Born and raised in Chicago, Poli has spent over 20 years in the restaurant industry, working with Jean Banchet of Le Francais Restaurant and Thomas Keller at The French Laundry, before moving to Spain to work under Chef Sergi Arola at La Broche. Poli returned home to the Windy City in 2005, where he took on executive chef roles at highly recognized restaurants, Butter, Perennial, and Tavernita, respectively - each earning coveted awards within the culinary industry. In 2013 he picked up and staged with other notable chefs across the globe, studying under Rene Redzepi, Dan Puskas, and Dan Hunter, among many others. He debuted in Nashville in 2016, taking the helm of the Catbird Seat. During the pandemic, the chef returned to Music City often to visit friends and family and says he fell in love with the city all over again.