September 10 - 14, 2012
The 5th annual Harrisburg Restaurant Week will take place on Monday, September 10 through Friday, September 14.
The event will showcase many of the fine dining establishments throughout downtown by featuring a 3 course menu for $30.
Reservations may be made in advance by calling the individual restaurant.
"One of my earliest memories of cooking was sitting on my grandfathers kitchen counter as a boy helping him make sticky buns. I found it interesting, fun and rewarding and it has since been my career. After attending the Academy of Culinary Arts in Mays Landing, NJ, I worked in Harrisburg at Felicita Resort and Spa. Starting as a banquet and prep cook, I worked my way up the ranks over a period of almost six years to eventually take over as head chef, overseeing food production throughout the property. In October of 2005, I was hired as the Executive Chef of the newly opened Cafe Fresco Center City in the heart of Harrisburg's 'Restaurant Row'. The restaurant's goal was to become the area's premier metropolitan eatery featuring an eclectic Asian-American inspired culinary theme. Blending American ideas with ingredients from Thai, Japanese and Chinese cuisines with a mix of modern and traditional techniques. Cafe Fresco offers diners the opportunity to enjoy interesting, fresh, uncomplicated, handmade fresh dishes in a cool, trendy atmosphere that rivals what can be found in larger cities. The restaurant has consistently received awards from local groups and publications since it's opening. Awards such as Best Downtown, Best Place to be Seen, Best First Date, Best Martini, are far from unusual.
I enjoy demonstrating my talents and have cooked in and won quite a few local competitions of varying styles, some for benefits such as the American Cancer Foundation and the Leukemia-Lymphoma Society and Carlisle Learning Center. I truly enjoy being a part of such events because they force you to combine your raw talent with your imagination, in a very short amount of time, all while under the pressure of the clock. These events really do show what you're made of. Really, it all comes back to the desire to make food that people are interested in and love to ear. That's what I do!
Thank you and I hope to see you this 'Restaurant Week'!"
Chef Travis Mumma
York native Jason Viscount did not always dream of becoming a chef. However, his life had always been influenced by fine cuisine and the food service industry. By the time he needed to decide upon a career, Viscount didn’t hesitate to attend the Restaurant School of Philadelphia where he fully developed and nurtured his passion for food.
After graduation, Viscount returned to central Pennsylvania where he spent time in some of the best kitchen this area has; the Yorktowne Hotel, Hotel Hershey’s Circular Dining Room and The Golden Sheaf at the Hilton Harrisburg.
In 2006 Viscount helped to open BRICCO to rave reviews. The restaurant quickly earned many distinguished awards and became the "place to be" for local foodies. Bricco’s most significant classification was received when it was selected to become a member of DiRōNA, Distinguished Restaurants of North America, an honor that fewer than 800 restaurants have earned in North America, Canada and Mexico since the organizations conception twenty years ago.
Today, Viscount enjoys the title of Executive Chef/General Manager of Bricco and all of the responsibility and creative freedom that comes with it. Viscount’s zeal for fine food is not put on the back burner when he exits the restaurant. At home, you’ll find he still loves conjuring up many of his own recipes and traditional family favorites for his wife and family to enjoy.
Stock's on 2nd
Carley's Ristorante & Piano Bar
Chef Matthew Poorman, Born and raised in Harrisburg Pennsylvania, began his culinary career at the age of 14. Starting as many young professionals do in this industry of Culinary Arts, he began working as a Dishwasher. He found a love for the true enjoyment of food and all that it encompasses. He grew from a dishwasher to now and most currently the Executive Chef of Stocks on Second, Inc. He is a graduate of the worlds premiere culinary college known as the Culinary Institute of America, Based in Hyde Park, New York, from the Associates and Bachelors degree Program. He also completed an additional teaching certificate position at one of the five student ran restaurants open to the public. Throughout his tenure in the industry he had the opportunity to work at many fine-dining establishments. A few distinguished establishments such as the Hotel Hershey of Hershey Pennsylvania, Aroma Osteria of Wappingers Falls, New York and Caterina De Medici of the Culinary Institute of America located in Hyde Park, NY.
El Sol Mexican Restaurant
Juan is a native of the Guadalajara region of Mexico. Like many great chefs, he has a natural talent for creating innovative dishes that adhere to the cooking styles of his native country. Juan has poured his heart and soul into the dishes featured at El Sol Mexican Restaurant with classic Mexican dishes such as mole poblano and camarones a la diabla, as well as his own personal creations, such as Bistek Guadalajara and Tilapia Jalisco. His focus on fresh ingredients is easily noted in his food presentations at El Sol, including lesser known produce items such as nopales (cactus paddles), which garnish several of the meat dishes at El Sol.
Qui Qui Musarra
The key ingredients of a successful and masterful chef are experience, innovation and a dedication to honor one’s heritage. Chef Qui has the perfect combination of a strong Italian family, culinary diversity and creative bent to present unexpected surprises in every dish. Her ethos is to practice sustainability, buy local and organic, fresh in-season ingredients and support the farm to table approach by personally selecting all foods that enter the kitchen. Professionally unrivaled, in-demand and always on the cutting edge, her approach to creating perfectly presented and palate-pleasing Italian and Mediterranean cuisine is due to her innate unique style and keen eye to detail. Suffice it to say, that her talents provide diners the least expensive way to travel the world. Always on the floor to get feedback, her wit is knife sharp, so be prepared for a show of shows as she offers you the finest of culinary adventures.
From studying Spanish literature at Vassar College in New York, to earning a degree in Political Science at Marymount College in New York City, it was the Culinary Arts degree from the Culinary Institute of America that rang the dinner bell. Upon graduation, she was cheese buyer at the first Dean & Deluca location in New York City, followed by an apprenticeship at the Caribe Hilton in San Juan, Puerto Rico. From there she held executive chef positions at some of Spain’s finest restaurants, before heading back to stateside where she spent years as chef for several of Washington, D.C.’s best dining establishments. After a lengthy stint as personal chef onboard a private yacht that cruised from Mexico to Panama, she returned again to open Pasta Art at the Broad Street Market in Harrisburg, Soon thereafter, she landed at Mangia Qui and the rest is history which is still in the making.
Central Pennsylvania native Robert Dacko’s passion for food began at a young age. Growing up in a family with a strong Italian and Ukrainian heritage, both sides of Dacko’s family cooked traditional dishes of their homeland from scratch regularly. No doubt this influences his cooking style to this day.
After graduating from The Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York in 1999, Rob moved backed to Central Pennsylvania and took a job as a Sous Chef at Empire Restaurant and Bar in Carlisle, PA. Serving a seasonal, globally influenced menu in a fine dining atmosphere was the perfect job for Rob, exposing him to many new ingredients, and cooking techniques that would serve him long into his career. After two years at Empire Rob relocated to Philadelphia, and began a nine year stint with Starr Restaurants. Starting as a line cook at the award winning Mediterranean restaurant Tangerine, Dacko worked his way up the ranks at Starr Restaurants. First as a Sous Chef at Tangerine, and ending as the Executive Chef of Butcher and Singer Steaks and Chops. A classic American Steakhouse which has been regarded as one of the city’s best since its opening in 2008.
Since moving back to Central Pennsylvania in 2010 Rob has taken on the position of Executive Chef of Home 231, a small restaurant in downtown Harrisburg, serving contemporary home style cooking in a comfortable, relaxed environment. Dacko intends to utilize as much produce, dairy, and meats as possible from the regions small farmers. Developing relationships with small growers and purveyors is something Rob feels strongly about, and takes a lot of pride in. Focusing on simple presentations of food with well developed flavors, and using ingredients that make sense is what Rob strives for.
The Golden Sheaf
Chef Matthew Stallings came to realize at a very young age that the culinary industry was calling to him. After graduating from South Western High School in Hanover, PA, Stallings went on to receive his formal education at the Pennsylvania Culinary Institute in Pittsburgh. It was there that Chef Stallings fully developed and nurtured his passion for food. His hard work and dedication to the culinary arts helped him to stand apart from the rest of his class and was sought out to join the team at the Hilton Harrisburg.
For the past twelve years, Chef Stallings has been working to grow his skills as a chef and to develop the team around him. His soft spoken presence and hands-on technique in the kitchen is a style that demands respect from everyone that comes in contact with him. Stallings took a two year leave from the Hilton Harrisburg and helped Chef Jason Viscount open the award-winning Bricco, at the corner of Third and Chestnut Streets in Harrisburg. Stallings assisted in the development of the Mediterranean menu that launched Bricco to the top of Pennsylvania’s culinary greats. During Stallings’ brief stint at Bricco the restaurant received many accolades including Harrisburg Magazine’s “Best New Restaurant.”
Chef Stallings returned to the Hilton Harrisburg in 2007 to take on the duties of Chef de Cuisine of the AAA Four Diamond award-winning restaurant, The Golden Sheaf. Daily, Stallings enjoys the challenges of the restaurant business. His passion lies in the task of fusing modern and traditional methods of cuisine to create new yet familiar experiences for the customers. While at the Hilton Harrisburg, he has had the pleasure of learning from great chefs to include Chef Jean-Marie Lacroix, CMC Ken Arnone and Chef Walter Shieb of the Greenbrier Resort and former White House chef. He believes their influence has helped to make him a well-rounded, passionate chef.
Joseph loves food. He enjoys talking about it, purchasing fresh quality ingredients, cooking them, and seeing how content and satisfied people are after enjoying a fulfilling meal. Joseph is a chile head! People fear the food he cooks for himself. He grows many of the world’s hottest varieties of chilies in his garden. He will eat lava, at least that’s what he’s been told!
Mesarick also loves beer. He likes to cook with beer, and sometimes he even puts it in the food. McGrath’s is a Mecca for Hop-Heads and they try to incorporate the malted beverages in the fine foods that they cook.
Joseph has been cooking most of his working career. From managing a Little Ceasar’s Pizza right out of high school to opening and running the Appalachian Brewing Company right out of college.
Joseph has a double Associates degree in Culinary Arts and Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Management from Harrisburg Area Community College. He trained under and owes most of his gratitude to Chef Michael Kelly from what is now Felicita (Anthony’s at Blue Mountain, then). That is where he gained his love for all things exotic and gourmet. From Thai spiced Kangaroo to pheasant confit, he truly learned to cook food there. As a child, Joseph traveled to Spain to visit his family and was eating foods that most kids only got to see on Fear Factor.
Joseph Mesarick has worked for several Downtown establishments over the years. He worked at the FireHouse for several years, opened Fisaga’s, opened Cantone’s Downtown (Now Zia’s at Red Door). Before working downtown he was the Sous Chef at the Lantern Lodge and Convention Center in Meyerstown. Bon Apetite.
Appalachian Brewing Co.
A native to central Pennsylvania, Katie Murphy began her culinary career at the age of 15. She started her career cooking steaks at a local steak house in Hanover, Pa. This is where she discovered her passion for cooking and enrolled in culinary school in 2002. While in culinary school, she was a full time Sous Chef at a fine dining restaurant called Patty and John’s where she was taught many techniques that she still uses to this day. In 2004, Katie graduated from The School of Culinary Arts at YBI with an Associates Degree in Culinary Arts and Restaurant Management. From there, she began working for the Altland House Corporation. This experience granted her the opportunity to run the kitchens of established facilities such as Penn National Golf Course, Ski Round Top, and The Altland House of Abbottstown. Today, Katie enjoys creating menus and specials as part of the kitchen management staff at Appalachian Brewing Company, Harrisburg. Her creativity is sparked from her ability to work with fresh and local ingredients. She also loves to create unique recipes that incorporate our handcrafted beers and sodas. We hope to have you as a guest for her specialty menu that will be available during Harrisburg’s annual restaurant week!!