Growing up in a large Italian family in Memphis, TN, Andy’s love affair with cooking and being in the kitchen started young. Once he met Michael at Christian Brothers High School where they were both students, he knew he had found his culinary soulmate. After graduating from University of Mississippi, Andy attended Johnson and Wales University in Charleston, SC and the Italian Institute for Advanced Culinary Studies in Calabria, Italy. His formative training as a chef, along with Michael, was the opportunity to work under master French chef Jose Gutierrez at lauded Chez Philippe in Memphis, TN.
In 2008, Andy and Michael opened Andrew Michael Italian Kitchen, a love letter to their Italian roots and Memphis childhood, which garnered them their first James Beard Foundation nomination. Their second eatery, Hog & Hominy, was touted as one of the best new restaurants of 2013 by Bon Appetit, GQ and Southern Living. This was also the year they were named Best New Chefs by Food and Wine, their cookbook Collards & Carbonara: Southern Cooking, Italian Roots was published, and they received their second James Beard Foundation nomination for Best Chef Southeast.
In 2015, Porcellio’s Craft Butcher opened to showcase their take on old-school butcheries and heritage meats. The pair’s first hotel offering Josephine Estelle in the Ace Hotel in New Orleans opened in 2016. That year also saw the opening of Catherine and Mary’s, a downtown Memphis spot inspired and named for their Italian grandmothers. Gray Canary in the Old Dominick Distillery in the South Main Arts District in downtown Memphis was their sixth concept.
The celebrated chefs’ seventh restaurant, Bishop, is now opened in the historical Central Station Hotel. As their first departure from Italian cooking, this French restaurant takes them back to their culinary start, where they honed the thoughtful cooking style and familial company culture for which they are known.
They started the Andrew Michael Foundation last year to help organize how the company can give back to our community. Ticer said. “For the charity, we wanted to do something locally to help provide kids in Memphis with nutritional meals. The Healthy Pantry program through the Mid-South Food Bank does that, and we’re so thrilled to use these dinners to help support it.”
Restaurant group rooted Italian Southern food inspired by both of our grandmothers
The backbone of every city and the culture of every town stems from entrepreneurship. Without the support from the community, entrepreneurship wouldn’t be possible. Michael and I always try to give back as much as possible in return for the constant support we receive from the community. I believe that it is our obligation to take care of our community the way that they take care of us. The everyday exchanges and reciprocal relationships built in our community is what makes being an entrepreneur so fulfilling.
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