Plating Excellence: World-class food for 600+ by BOKA Catering Group Executive Chef Giuseppe Tentori

A master of simple, exquisite cuisine, Chef Giuseppe Tentori has earned critical acclaim in Chicago’s culinary scene after moving from Milan, Italy to the states at 19. Chef Tentori was named “Best New Chef” by Food & Wine magazine in 2008, he has received numerous nominations for "Best Chef: Great Lakes" by the James Beard Foundation, three-stars from the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Sun-Times and four-stars from Time Out Chicago. Under Tentori’s leadership as executive chef at BOKA Restaurant, BOKA earned four Michelin-stars in a row, solidifying the restaurant’s status as one of Chicago’s most sought-after tables. Soon, Chef Tentori will reprise his role as Head Chef of Red Jacket Optional (RJO) for a third year.


Chef Giuseppe Tentori


Chef Tentori and BOKA Catering Group first served RJO during Chicago Children’s Choir’s 60th anniversary season, creating a fine dining experience for a record-breaking evening of $1.25 million raised for CCC. His imaginative cuisine coupled with his admiration of CCC make RJO a noteworthy experience for our attendees: “I love that Chicago Children’s Choir is such a unique organization and what they’re doing for the children is very amazing.”


The first course at RJO 2017. (Photo: Marcin Cymmer)


Last year’s inspired meal at RJO included a first course of red and yellow tomato, mozzarella mousse, endive, radicchio and balsamic pearl followed by an entrée of short ribs, grits, grilled broccolini, roasted carrot risotto tart, whipped ricotta and grilled vegetables finished with a carrot sauce. This menu takes time to prepare, so we asked Chef Tentori how he and his team coordinate a masterful meal for each of our 600+ guests at RJO:

“People think catering is very easy, but there are a lot of moving parts,” Chef Tentori explained. For RJO, some of these challenges include: ordering the food, coordinating the restaurants to cook the food and scheduling nearly 50 chefs and 100 servers from the BOKA Restaurant Group to staff the event. Before Chef Tentori and his team can even begin preparing the evening’s fare, they must transform a portion of The Geraghty into a working kitchen.

Chef Tentori’s team puts the finishing touches on the dessert for RJO 2017. (Photo: Marcin Cymmer)

The place settings at RJO 2017. (Photo: Marcin Cymmer)

Chef Tentori and his BOKA Catering team work extremely well together each year to prepare a meal of the highest quality for our guests at RJO and he looks forward to another fantastic gala in support of Chicago Children’s Choir.

Lisa Salazar