THE STORY OF TORTELLO
Born and raised in Italy, Dario Monni has been steeped in the rich food culture of Italy from an early age. In his hometown of Venice, Monni learned the art of preparing handmade pasta from his “nonna” while listening to stories of his grandfather’s specialty foods store. His summers were spent with relatives on his father’s side in rural Sardinia, where his family worked as shepherds, cheese-mongers and butchers, imparting onto him the deep-rooted value of the region’s unique rituals, pristine ingredients and simple dedication to an authentic craft.
Monni and Gray enlisted Chicago dining scene veteran Duncan Biddulph (The Publican, Lula Café, Rootstock Wine & Beer Bar)to lead Tortello’s culinary program as the concept’s Executive Chef. Like the Italian cooking tradition, Biddulph brings with his strong connections to local purveyors and a passion for high-quality ingredients and craft. He’ll be backed by Lilla Simone, a visiting sfoglina (pasta maker) who runs Puglia’s Clubdelle Orecchiette, as well Italian chef Davide Nardelli visiting from northern Italy. Together with Simone’s expert technique of handmade pasta by rolling pin and Nardelli’s extensive experience around Italy, Biddulph partners with Midwestern purveyors including Yuppie HillFarms of Wisconsin and Green Acres Farm of Indiana to present a rotating counter-service menu of handmade pasta using Monni’s original family recipes.