After joining the kitchen staff at The Optimist earlier this year, Pasquale “Pat” Pascarella is officially running the show. Pascarella has taken over the executive chef position, reports Atlanta Magazine.
Pascarella comes to Atlanta from Norwalk, Conn., where he served as chef and owner at Italian restaurant Bar Sugo since October 2012 (he still owns the restaurant). He’s also spent time at Mario Batali’s Esca and Eric Ripert’s Le Bernardin in New York City. At The Optimist, Pascarella plans to change the menu often, with as many as six to 10 new dishes on a daily basis, according to Atlanta.
Craig Richards, director of culinary for Ford Fry Restaurants, was running the kitchen at Fry’s Westside seafood house on an interim basis. Richards took over for Wesley True, who served as The Optimist’s executive chef for about a year, from August 2015 to August 2016.