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SAVOR Out restauranteur Bruce Bozzi Jr. brings changes to Palm Chicago
DISH Weekly Dining Guide by Ashley Collins
2018-08-20

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Bruce Bozzi Jr., executive vice president of The Palm Restaurant Group, is the fourth-generation descendant of a company that his great grandfather co-created.

With 22 locations in the US and two in Mexico—including one in Chicago's downtown area, at 323 E. Wacker Dr.—recently underwent renovations last year and re-opened its doors in April. The new renovations feature additions to the design, artwork, menu and more. The Palm Chicago has been a part of the city for more than 30 years, and still continues to deliver exceptional experiences and classic cuisines—and patrons might see a famous star or two.

"We've been in Chicago for over 22 years and this is our second location. Arestaurant after a certain x amount of time needs some tender love and care," Bozzi said.

The Palm Restaurant Group began its journey in the heart of New York during the 1920s, when two Italian immigrants originally created a restaurant that served lunch and dinner and was a favorite of cartoonists and writers from the local newspaper syndicates. As an Italian restaurant, it first opened offering similar dishes, later adding steak, beef and seafood options to the menu. As its popularity grew, the next opened in 1972.

Celebrating 92 years of service, the restaurant group continues to be operated by members of the Bozzi and Ganzi families since its founding in 1926 and upholds The Palm's philosophy when it first started: "Treat guests like family, serve great food, and always exceed expectations."

"I am very proud of the tradition that my family and the Ganzi family carried on—delivering great service and building relationships it's pretty awesome," Bozzi told Windy City Times. "I feel honestly really proud to keep the family business going."

Currently in California, Bozzi said he spends a lot of his time in the restaurant working the floor and engaging with customers during lunch, along with his social-media component. In 2011, Bozzi created the radio show "Lunch with Bruce," during which he features a different well-known individual to have lunch and casual conversation which sparked after his interview with his good friend Andy Cohen.

"I have a really great time doing what I love to do which is, eat and talk," Bozzi said.

Along with working in the restaurant, Bozzi also assists in directing the company's marketing, culinary, and human resource teams. The future for The Palm Restaurant Group is growing and the company is currently looking at new cities to explore and share their hospitality culture. With appearances on the The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon and "All of the above with Norman Lear" the restaurant is constantly gaining exposure which is leading to new ideas.

After asking Bozzi who he would have dinner with living or dead he named Marilyn Monroe, former President Barack Obama, and Harvey Milk. Bozzi Jr. is a true restaurateur who believes that the start of a great experience is to eat and have a good conversation. He strives to deliver great customer service to his guests while working alongside his team who helps develop creative marketing strategies, menu changes, artwork detail, and more.

More information on the history and locations of The Palm Restaurant Group can be found at ThePalm.com .

Sidetrack holds MOMosa Benefit for Equality Illinois

On Aug. 18, Sidetrack Video Bar hosted the sixth annual MOMosa benefit in support of Equality Illinois. The event featured an eclectic brunch menu and a special martini mixing class by Grey Goose Vodka ambassador Emile Chaillot.

Equality Illinois board member and event organizer Kevin Hauswirth said of the event, "We decided to do something for all the moms of gay kids who support us. My mother told me that she supports all these events but she never meets any other moms of gay kids. So we decided to have a brunch to bring out the moms and support a worthy cause."

—Vernon Hester


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