Mark Mendez leaving Carnivale
Mark Mendez, the chef of the mega Jerry Kleiner restaurant Carnivale (702 West Fulton Market, 312-850-5005), will be departing September 1, "to pursue his dream of opening his own restaurant," according to a press release. David Dworshak, the current executive sous chef, will move into the executive chef position, and Mendez will stick around through the summer during the transition. Dworshak has spent the last six years at Carnivale. Previously, he worked at Spring, Harvest on Huron and Stephanie Izard's Scylla. In the press release, Dworshak adds, "I will continue Chef Mendez’s love for food, passion and creativity.” Mendez's focus on quality local product, as well as his strong internet presence, gave a sense of integrity and a reputation for great food to a restaurant whose mere scale could have allowed it to be written off as an anonymous party factory. I'm sure I'm not alone in my eagerness to follow Mendez's personality and food to wherever he ends up next.