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New Casa chef returns to his culinary roots

Mark Triggiano

After spending the last 15 years in corporate dining, Mark Triggiano is returning to his roots as the new chef at Casa Italia.

“I learned so much from working in the corporate world, but garlic and red sauce are in my DNA, so this is like coming home for me,” says Triggiano, who served as both unit and chef manager for Motorola and Compass North America.

It should come as no surprise that his grandmother was a formative influence. While his fellow students at St. Cyprian elementary school in River Grove were muddling through sloppy Joes in the school lunchroom, he was feasting on pastina in brodo and veal scallopini in nonna’s kitchen. “She taught me the value of good food and of making people happy through their taste buds,” he recalls.

After earning an associate’s degree from the Culinary Institute of America in New York and serving as executive chef for Sentry Insurance in Wisconsin for three years, he took over as owner and chef of Pastafina restaurant in Chicago, earning plaudits during a nine-year tenure.

He brings that experience and training to bear on his new position. “You have to know your market,” he says of the family and club events he’ll be servicing. “My mission is to give them the food they love at an affordable price.” (708-345-5933)

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