Millennium Park | Sept 23 - 25
One of the most decorated, respected, and charismatic chefs in the world, Todd English has enjoyed a staggering number of accolades during his remarkable career. He has been recognized by several of the food industry’s most prestigious publications, established one of the best-known restaurant brands in the nation, published four critically acclaimed cookbooks, and produced his own TV show for PBS.
In the spring of 1991, English caught the culinary world’s eye when the James Beard Foundation named him their National Rising Star Chef. English followed through on that promise, as the James Beard Foundation subsequently named him Best Chef in the Northeast in 1994. Nation’s Restaurant News named English one of their Top 50 Tastemakers in 1999. In 2001, English was awarded Bon Appetit’s Restaurateur of the Year award and was named one of People Magazine’s 50 Most Beautiful People. Todd also has been named to the James Beard Foundation’s Who’s Who in Food and Beverage in America.
Todd English began his cooking career at the young age of 15 when he first entered the doors of a professional kitchen. At 20, he attended the Culinary Institute of America and graduated in 1982 with honors. He continued to hone his craft with Jean Jacques Rachou at New York’s La Cote Basque and then relocated to Italy where he apprenticed at the well-established Dal Pescatore in Canneto sull'Oglio and Paracucchi in Locanda dell'Angelo. It was in Italy that Todd, drawing from his Italian heritage, developed his unique style and approach to cooking. English returned to the United States at 25 and was asked to be the Executive Chef of the award-winning Northern Italian restaurant Michela’s in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He served there as an executive chef for three years, garnering high praise from both the press and the public.
In 1989, Todd opened his first restaurant, Olives, a 50-seat storefront in Charlestown, Massachusetts. It drew immediate national and international applause for English’s signature interpretive Mediterranean cuisine; it was voted Best New Restaurant by Boston Magazine, has been honored as Best Food and Top Table by Gourmet Magazine, and was consistently named Boston’s #1 Favorite Restaurant by Zagat. English went on to establish Olives as one of the most prestigious culinary brands in the nation, opening additional locations at The Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas, Atlantis in the Bahamas, and in Santa Fe section of Mexico City, with the latest opening In The Venetian Village at The Ritz Carlton in Abu Dhabi.
English has created an astonishing list of successful restaurant concepts. Following the success of Olives, English created Figs, a more casual sister restaurant concept that serves traditional and eclectic pizzas and handmade pastas, and for which English was awarded the “Hot Concept” award from Nation’s Restaurant News. There are currently five Figs locations: two in the greater Boston area, one in Laguardia Airport, and the most recent 2 locations abroad in the Middle East, Figs Kuwait located at the 360 Mall and at the Avenue Mall in Kuwait. Todd English Enterprises also includes Tuscany at Mohegan Sun in Connecticut, which serves Italian inspired foods and pays homage to his Italian roots; Bonfire, a steakhouse with locations in New York’s JFK and Boston’s Logan airports that is a celebration of ranch cooking around the world; and his seafood concept, blueZoo at the Walt Disney World Resort’s Dolphin Hotel.
In February 2010 English brought his first pub concept to Crystals CityCenter in Las Vegas with Todd English P.U.B. Summer 2010 brought the opening of the highly anticipated, European- inspired Todd English Food Hall located at the iconic Plaza Hotel. English also opened his first French-inspired Brasserie Ça Va, located in the Intercontinental Hotel in New York City’s theater district. In 2012, English expanded his Olives’ Restaurants abroad to Mexico City and then at Atlantis in the Bahamas in 2013. In addition, he opened up a second location of the Todd English P.U.B. in Birmingham, Alabama. In 2013. In 2014, English opened MXDC, his first Mexican restaurant in Washington, D.C. and a second Todd English Food Hall in Manila. English’s reach abroad is growing with 2 new concepts opening in the Philippines: Pound, a fast casual burger concept and Hook, a seafood endeavor.
English has also gone on to establish himself as a successful television producer and host. In 2007, his international travel and cooking series, Food Trip with Todd English, which features Todd exploring the globe in search of new local flavors and techniques, debuted on PBS. The series has garnered him two James Beard Awards as well as an Emmy nomination. English has also starred in the national public television series, Cooking Under Fire and The Food Network’s Opening Soon, and is a frequent guest on such shows as Top Chef, Iron Chef, The Today Show, Martha Stewart Living, Good Morning America, CBS This Morning, Live with Regis and Kelly, Extra, The Meredith Viera Show among others.
Todd has authored the critically acclaimed cookbooks, The Olives Table, The Figs Table and The Olives Dessert Table, published by Simon & Schuster, and his fourth book, Cooking in Everyday English, the A,B,Cs of Great Flavor at Home published by Oxmoor House. In 2005 he debuted his line of cookware and lifestyle products, The Todd English Collection, breaking electronic retail records in the houseware category. The Todd English Collection featuring Todd English Titan cookware is now available on EVINE Live. In addition to cookware, the Todd English Collection line will feature kitchen tools, small appliances, cutlery sets, and other housewares and lifestyle products.
English is also a celebrated host and chef for high-profile entertainment events. In 2005 English was the Executive Celebrity Chef for MTV’s Video Music Awards in Miami, and he has hosted events for The Superbowl, Sundance Film Festival, Fashion Week, The Tony Awards, NASCAR, and Dinner In White and is a regular participant in the South Beach Food and Wine Festival, Sun Wine Fest, Swan Dolphin Food and Wine weekend, Flavor Napa to name a few.
A dedicated philanthropist, Todd is very involved with several local and national charities including Susan G. Komen, Big Brother, the Anthony Spinazzola Foundation, Community Servings, Share Our Strength, the Boys and Girls Clubs, Volunteers of America, Food Bank of NYC, Feeding America, Autism Speaks, City Harvest, Keep Memory Alive, Family Reach, Men with Heart, Men Against Breast Cancer, Maureen’s Haven Shelters, and Bakes for Breast Cancer where he is a honorary board member. Most recently, Todd formed The Wendy English Breast Cancer Research Foundation in honor of his sister.