Larry Mindel & Executive Chef Benjamin Balesteri — Poggio
“At the end of the day, restaurants are my drug of choice...”

On this 41st episode of Menu Stories, we meet Larry Mindel and Executive Chef Benjamin Balesteri of Poggio in Sausalito, California. Mindel is a long-time restaurateur who thought he was retired from the restaurant business after he brought the popular Italian chain, Il Fornaio, to great success. Nonetheless, his undying love for creating restaurants persisted and when the seaside town of Sausalito encouraged him to create a new gathering spot in town, he couldn’t say no.

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The glittering San Francisco Bay from Sausalito The outdoor patio at Poggio overlooks Bridgeway in Sausalito Fresh salmon waits to be grilled on the open flame Crudo appetizer garnished with pomegranate and fresh herbs
Mindel catches up on the local newspapers Chef Benjamin having fun in the kitchen
Chef Benjamin prepares a crudo dish  Larry Mindel of Il Fornaio and now Poggio Trattoria
Chef Benjamin at the fire oven station in Poggio A tartare appetizer is plated by Chef Benjamin Balesteri
The finished crudo appetizer plate, topped with pomegranate Chef Benjamin plates a salmon dish A full table at Poggio Tartare with capers and crème fraîche The grilled salmon is a Poggio favorite Larry Mindel with Executive Chef Benjamin Balesteri Papardelle pasta with ragu connects with Poggio's Italian focus

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