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March 22, 1991 - Image 70

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1991-03-22

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Sunday, March 31
11:00 to 7:00


Enjoy Easter Sunday
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19000 Hubbard Drive • Dearborn, MI 48126 • 336-4900


FRIDAY, MARCH 22, 1991

Chef Speaks From Experience
When He Thanks U.S Soldiers


Local Columnist


e wears an American
flag pin on his lapel
. . . and he's proud . . .
The marquee outside his east-
side restaurant says, "God
Bless Our Troops."
Nino Chiuchiarelli can be
called anything but a syn-
thetic flag waver . . . He's
been there . . . knows what
war is like . . . can relate to
the guys 'n gals who serve in
the Persian Gulf . . . and what
they might have gone
through if the conflict hadn't
Talking to Nino, you
wonder why he isn't a harden-
ed veteran of the Vietnam
War . . . He shies away from
talking about the "Nam
Days," but there's no mistake
that a lot of emotion is pent
up within him.
Two years after Nino came
to the United States from Ita-
ly, he was at Ft. Knox for
basic training . . . then to Ft.
Benning jump school . . . Ft.
Bragg with the 82nd Air-
borne . . . Panama Canal for
jungle warfare school . . . and
19 months with Special
Forces in Matrang, Vietnam.
When Nino arrived in
America, his first job was at
Biffs on Woodward and Six
Mile while attending Osborne
High . . . Those who
remember this Biffs can
thank young Nino for many of
their delicious hamburgers
. . . He was the night cook.
Today, Nino Chiuchiarelli is
celebrating the second an-
niversary of his own
restaurant on the northwest
corner of 13 Mile Road and
Hayes . . . Nino's Ristorante.
It took us 22 minutes to hit
the Hoover-Schoenerr exit off
1-696 . . . and another five to
reach Nino's, a free-standing
building with seating for 167.
The banquet room is being
turned into one of the very
few wine bars in Michigan .. .
serving 24 different vintages
by the glass from a dispenser
. . . plus another seven by the
glass and a wine list of over
200 . . . It will be called
"Nino's Cantina."
Nino can count 33 years in
the restaurant business .. .
beginning as a busboy at the
Cabillino Bianco in Abruzzo,
Italy . . . He came here as a
16-year-old and when 18
began a six-year hitch with
Uncle Sam.
When he returned from ser-
vice, Nino went to work for
Mario's on Second in Detroit

as cook, waiter, etc. . . . In
those days, everybody at
Mario's had to know five
things . . . how to wash
dishes, bus tables, bartend,
cook and wait tables.
Then it was to Pine Knob as
maitre d' and tableside
master cooking stylist for Joe
Locricchio and Gary Francell.
After a year at the North-
field Hilton with the Frankel
family, Nino managed the
banquet department at their
Somerset Inn on W. Big
Beaver in Troy.
From the Frankels, Nino
went on his own . . . with
highly gratifying results .. .
When hosting in front or do-
ing tableside cooking, the
very gracious Nino is a most
pleasant gent saying "thank
you" all evening to customers.
He is from the old school of
restaurateuring . . . there
seven days a week . . . prefer-
ring to run the place himself
rather than have others do it
for him . . . People say Nino is
old-fashioned, but this is his
preference and customers ap-
preciate it.

He and 23-year-old son Joe
do all the tableside
cooking .. .
Joe also taught Stan and
Judy Frankel's son, Aaron,
the guitar . . .

This is a cozy place . . . very
unpretentious . . . a former
Shenanigans . . . with
burgundy linen tablecloths
and light brown triangle cloth
in the center . . . The beige
booths are heavily-padded
with earthtone print curtains
between them . . . and three
of the four walls fully mir-
rored . . . No put-on here .. .
just down-to-earth at-
mosphere with very polite
service to help accentuate
Nino's cuisine.

Nino's is rated among the
best restaurants in
metropolitan Detroit . . . with
experience a major keyword
. . . plus the "old-fashioned"
but really good way of "If you
want things done right, do it
yourself, or show people how
it should be done."
Executive Chef Jeff Kay
worked with Master Chef Jeff
Gabriel at Grosse Pointe
Yacht Club . . . There's Gil
Marzi from France . . . Sous
Chef Steve Johnson . . . and
Sous Chef Magnus Cundblad,
whose last job was at the
Swedish Embassy in Algiers.
Nino trained all in his way
of authentic Italian cooking.
Sherrie Beatty, dining room

manager, was formerly a
hostess at the London Chop
This Vietnam Special
Forces veteran turned
restaurateur loves his work
. . . and serves pure logic for
a personal menu . . . "Love
food, wine and people and
you'll have a successful
Nino Chiuchiarelli has
followed his own credo to the
the grand piano performing
his impressive repertoire of
hits with the help of a
32-piece orchestra.
This will be what more
than 1,500 people expected at
the ninth annual black tie
dinner gala by Michigan
Cancer Foundation will see
. . . May 4 . . . at the Westin
He is among the country's
most accomplished and

Nino was with the
Special Forces in

respected composers . . .
credited with helping revolu-
tionize popular music.
But his legendary musical
contributions are matched on-
ly by a genuine concern for
others . . . Together with his
long-time musical compa-
nion, Dionne Warwick, Burt
Bacharach has actively sup-
ported research into the
causes and treatment of AIDS
and help for its victims.
More than $1 million in
proceeds from the 1986 Gram-
my Song of the Year, "That's
What Friends Are For," which
he co-wrote with wife-lyricist
Carole Bayer Sager, was
donated to AmFAR, the
American Foundation for
AIDS Research.
Four years ago, AmFAR
awarded a grant to resear-
chers in Michigan Cancer
Foundation's department of
chemistry . . . It was the first
to synthesize the drug, AZT
. . . now used almost ex-
clusively worldwide in the
treatment of AIDS.
Honorary chairmen of the
ninth annual dinner by MCF
are Lloyd and Maurcine
Reuss . . . Jan and Pat Hart-
mann are dinner chairper-
sons . . . WDIV-TV anchor
Mort Crim, who always does
such a fine job, will again be
the evening's master of
Patron tickets are $400 per
person and entitle guests to

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