Where has Chef Mike Carrino been? Hot From The Kettle has the answer. Lackawanna Railroad Station!
For the past several months Chef Michael Carrino, formerly of Passionne, has been working on one of the most historical restaurant projects in New Jersey. The renowned chef plans to open his new restaurant concept this summer at the historic Lackawanna Railroad Station, located at 1 Lackawanna Plaza.
"The Lackawanna Railroad Station was built in 1912 and designed by William Hull Botsford, a 25 year-old architect who died on the Titanic before construction began. He also designed stations in Basking Ridge, Hopatcong, Watessing, Bloomfield and Hoboken to name a few. The station also accommodated one of the original tracks featuring the electric train."
We spoke with Mike in the summer regarding the closing of Passionne. In our interview, Chef Carrino stressed that Passionne was not going out of business, but rather seeking a larger space where he could grow his "soapbox."
And a larger soapbox it is - with a liquor license! According to the preliminary press release, the new restaurant, will feature "non-pretentious Modern American Cuisine with a devotion to seasonal, local ingredients served by some of the most knowledgeable staff in the state." The name of the new restaurant will be released soon.
The project symbolizes a dual resurrection, not only of the railroad station, but also of Carrino. Chef Carrino has been a longstanding proponent of sourcing local products and is very active in the charitable community. I could think of no other chef more deserving - or more promising - to take on a project of this import and magnitude.
Stay tuned for an exclusive Hot From The Kettle video detailing the restoration of Lackawanna R.R. Station. Visit the Gallery for more pics.