Tripveel sat down with Executive Chef Robert Vargo of LeMont Restaurant in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Where did you grow up and where have you traveled to that has helped inspire and shape your cooking philosophy?
I grew up in Johnstown, Pennsylvania and my mom inspired my interest in cooking. She made all kinds of great meals with poultry and beef.
Tell our readers an interesting fact or two about yourself.
I am the father of three great sons. Also, I became a cook in the Army. I was the Personal Chef to General Norman Schwarzkopf during the first Gulf War. When I returned home from military service, I attended the Pennsylvania Culinary Institute in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and then, began my professional career at LeMont Restaurant.
Tell us about your absolute favorite food and why readers should try it if they haven’t already.
My favorite food is pasta. I love it!
What are three ingredients that you simply couldn’t live without?
The three ingredients that I cannot live without would be salt, pepper and basil... and not in any particular order!
We love the art behind plating. What do you love about designing the perfect dish?
The perfect dish is all about eye appeal. It's an art and a work in progress. It's ever-changing!
Tell us about one of the most creative dishes you’ve created?
My most creative dish is one that I make for my sons: Chicken Pasta Aioli Sliders. Our family loves them!
Share your most recent awards and accreditations with us!
LeMont Restaurant's recent awards include a 2017 Wine Spectator Award of Excellence, 2018 OpenTable Diner’s Choice Award and The Knot’s Best of Weddings.
What are some of the latest trends you’re seeing in top restaurants across the globe?
The latest trend in restaurants... two words: gluten free.
What’s your favorite cocktail or liquor?
My favorite drink is Wild Turkey American Honey Bourbon.
What do you love about being Executive Chef at LeMont Restaurant in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania?
I love everything about being the Executive Chef at LeMont. The people in Pittsburgh are like family to us at the restaurant. We love exceeding the expectations of all of our guests, especially our visitors who fall in love with our great city of Pittsburgh!