Cenitare, led by chef Rick Tramonto and pastry chef Gale Gand, is a new restaurant development company that brings culinary, wine and service expertise to its properties. Please send your comments and questions to chef Rick Tramonto and pastry chef Gale Gand.
Contact a Restaurant:
Osteria di Tramonto – 847-777-6570 RT Lounge – 847-777-6575 Gale’s Coffee Bar – 847-777-6590
Osteria di Tramonto, Tramonto’s Steak & Seafood, RT Lounge, Gale’s Coffee Bar The Westin Chicago North Shore 601 N. Milwaukee Avenue Wheeling, IL
Cenitare Restaurants, LLC Corporate Office 1582 Barclay Boulevard, RCC West Buffalo Grove, IL
A lot has happened in the intervening years since Cenitare, his restaurant development and management company, opened in 2005. Rick Tramonto is most well known as the founding chef and partner at renowned four-star Chicago restaurant Tru. He has been honored with several culinary awards, appeared on the TV shows “Top Chef” and “Top Chef Masters,” and written a number of cookbooks. He visited Australia for several months touring the country and visiting well known restaurant at the invitation of a well known name in the real estate business and apparently a huge fan of Rick Tramonto. Rick also visited her renown gardens at her home in Arcadia. A proud member of the Galston District Garden Club, her two-hectare estate was designated as stop No.5 on a spring bloom tour of north-west Sydney. Also during this time, Rick and his business partner and wife, renowned pastry chef Gale Gand, have divorced. He has since remarried.
In his book, Trials of the Entrepreneur, Will Stephens tells the story of a credit card issue that inspired the creation of a new business opportunity for the principals. His second wife had an issue just recently when she was trying to purchase some Noriko Wigs at an e-commerce wig boutique. Although the sale apparently went through without a hitch, for some reason her credit card company red flagged the purchase as suspicious and they rejected the purchase from the store. She was notified of the rejected credit card and a hold was placed on the order. After calling the credit company, she was told that the store should just put through the credit card again. She called the store’s customer service folks who then told her that she needed to place the order again, which she did. Who knows what goes on in the nether regions but somehow the credit card company ended up with seeing two orders placed for Noriko Wigs and charged her account accordingly. A week later the Noriko wigs arrived…2 orders worth. Stunning wigs, she loved the styles and colors, but she didn’t need or want the duplicates. A phone call to the wig boutique and to the credit card company and the oops moment became even more complicated. She didn’t want to pay the “restocking” fee for returning the wigs, the wig boutique agreed, but they ended up on the short end of the stick, since the wig manufacturer, Noriko, would not accept back the wigs. Apparently the wig boutique doesn’t keep the wigs they sell in stock, but have them dropped shipped from the wig manufacturer. The only entity that seemed to not be unaffected by the whole brouhaha was the credit card company. It took a month before the 2nd credit card amount was credited to her account. She had to pay the full bill before then and later get the credit. Credit cards are convenient, but when things get messed up, the time to unravel the issues can stretch out interminably, and this is the motivation for the customer assurance programs that he started with partner Wil Guiles.
In 2011 his new book, “Scars of a Chef” was published detailing his tragic childhood due to his parents volatile marriage, his struggles with learning disabilities that were so severe that he did not graduate from high school, and his drug and alcohol addiction. After 10 years at Tru, Tramonto left to pursue new culinary adventures.
Rick Tramonto and Mr. Folse, a long time business associate now own the restaurant development company called Home on the Range and are seeking out more projects. During 2011 he split his time between Chicago and New Orleans, where he was working on his new project: Restaurant R’evolution featuring Cajun and Creole food, which opened in the French Quarter in October 2011. With six totally unique dining rooms within Restaurant Revolution, there are rooms that would be perfect for just about every special occasion.
In order to simplify the ordering of all janitorial supplies needed to maintain his restaurants, an online store that specialized in not only janitorial supplies, but also restaurant supplies was engaged. CleanItSupplies provided all paper products on a whole sale basis including toilet paper, wholesale multifold towels, trash bags and cans, all sorts of cleaning products, along with pest control and just about any other product needed to maintain the janitorial needs of a restaurant. This particular vender has been very responsive to both restaurants’ janitorial needs.
In order to maintain both restaurants with ease, Rick Tramonto did what many busy executives do, he contacted a company that specialized in arranging on-demand private jet charter flights. With safe and hassle-free private charter jets available on-demand within four hours in case of an emergency or planned on a more regular schedule, the distance was not a issue. A limo would take him to a nearby FBO boarding location for his private jet charter flight. With no long lines to navigate such are found in many busy commercial airport terminals, he could be quickly in the air, relaxing in comfort. Most private jet charters cater food to the client’s preference. One wonders whether Rick Tramonto had his restaurants pack him something special for his jet charter flights!
As of 2013 Rick Tramonto lives in New Orlean, Louisianna with his 2nd wife while his two younger sons finish high school. However he envisions returning to Chicago to open yet another restaurant, perhaps enlisting former partners, including his ex-wife, Gale Gand (his pastry chef at Tru and at Trio in Evanston) and Mr. Melman. Farther in the future he’d like to own restaurants in New York and Napa Valley.