Chef Evan Behmer, a Chicagoland native, grew up in a food-loving family—whether it was cooking up the day’s catch on fishing trips with his dad, or enjoying a traditional Polish meal at family get-togethers with his mom’s side of the family. After majoring in fine arts at the University of Illinois at Chicago, Behmer decided to combine his artistic talents with his love for food and went on to pursue the culinary arts post-graduation.
Since joining Mercat a la Planxa's culinary team in 2012, Behmer's industrious nature lead to his rapid rise through the ranks, from line cook to chef de cuisine overseeing day-to-day operations at the restaurant, a position he assumed in early 2015. At Mercat, Behmer applies his eye for artistry and attention to detail to every dish that comes off the line. Like any artist, Behmer takes his work very seriously and treats each dish he creates as his own masterpiece.
Under the tutelage of Mercat's Executive Chef Jose Garces, Behmer honed his expertise in cooking authentic Catalan cuisine. In lieu of a formal culinary education, Behmer takes every challenge as an opportunity to learn and grow.
“I feel extremely fortunate for the opportunity I’ve had to work with Chef Garces and to produce food from a region known not only for its quality ingredients, but for its celebratory dining customs,” says Behmer.
With Behmer in the kitchen, diners at Mercat now have even more to celebrate.