Friday, November 4, 2011

Acclaimed Chef Shawn Cirkiel to Open New Southern Italian Eatery in Central Austin

Acclaimed Chef Shawn Cirkiel to Open New Southern Italian Eatery in Central Austin:
Featuring Traditional Italian Dishes and Modern Favorites, Olive & June to Open in Spring 2012

Celebrated Austin Chef Shawn Cirkiel is drawing from the culinary influences of his travels, the warm traditions of family and some of his most fond childhood dinner memories with his newest restaurant: Olive & June. A Southern Italian-style restaurant named for his grandmother and his wife’s grandmother, Olive & June is scheduled to open in early 2012 at 3411 Glenview Ave., in the striking, spacious building that formerly housed El Arbol.   
 Chef Cirkiel’s parkside restaurant in the heart of the Sixth Street entertainment district has been delighting Austinites with his award-winning take on clean, upscale American cuisine since 2008. And, more recently, Chef Cirkiel won acclaim when he opened backspace, his authentic Neapolitan pizzeria located behind parkside.
 With Olive & June, Chef Cirkiel is again sure to please, offering dishes that play on well-loved Italian flavors and ingredients. The Olive & June menu is also a tribute to family dining, and is somewhat influenced by the fun-loving family dinners Chef Cirkiel enjoyed as a child in the Italian-American neighborhood of the South Bronx, where his father grew up. Menu specialties at Olive & June will highlight local, seasonal ingredients and will include Southern and some Northern Italian favorites like fresh, handmade pasta dishes and entrées such as baby lamb and delicate polenta; a mélange of mint, capers and olive oil atop grilled swordfish; an updated traditional meatball made with roasted eggplant and breadcrumbs; as well as a variety of piccoli piatti, small plates packing lots of Italian flavor; and antipasti dishes featuring Italian appetizer staples such as cured meats, cheeses, olives and vegetables.       
Sunday evenings at Olive & June are family nights, and the menu will solely feature piccoli piatti and family-style entrées ideal for sharing on the restaurant’s patio, which will be lined with colorful, blooming flowers and beautiful greenery reminiscent of the Southern Italian coast. Saturday and Sunday brunch service will be added to Olive and June’s offerings soon after the restaurant opens, and the restaurant’s third-floor office space will be renovated to allow for a special private dining area.
Chef Cirkiel will lead the Olive & June kitchen, and continue to run parkside and backspace as well, with the help of Chef de Cuisine Justin Rupp and Pastry Chef Steven Cak. General Manager Harlan Scott will manage all three restaurants. 
Olive & June is located at 3411 Glenview Ave. in Central Austin. Serving Southern Italian-style cuisine handmade by renowned Chef Shawn Cirkiel, Olive & June is set to open in early 2012.

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