John Hogan is a fixture of the Chicago culinary community. With over 30 years of expertise working in some of the city’s most notable kitchens, he has been recognized for both innovative haute cuisine and perfectly executed simple fare with his signature twists.
Hogan was born and raised in Chicago. His love of food began at a young age when he would watch his mother prepare dinner for his family. Hogan would sit in awe as his mom made béchamel sauce or Welsh rarebit, paying attention to every detail. In his teens and early twenties he would dine out at Chicago’s finest French restaurants and then recreate at home, which led to his enrollment at Dumas Pere cooking school in Glenview, Ill.
After graduating cooking school, Hogan tended the copper pots at Chicago’s bastions of French and American cuisine, including the four-star Everest, Kiki’s Bistro, Le Perroquet, L’Escargot, and Park Avenue Cafe. When Hogan was executive chef at Kiki’s Bistro, the eatery was named the favorite restaurant of Chicago chefs in a survey conducted by Chicago magazine. Hogan began gaining national attention when he opened up Savarin, a unique French/Parisian restaurant, which was named one of “America’s Top 50 Restaurants” by Travel + Leisure, one of the “Best New Restaurants” of 1999 in Chicago magazine, “Best Restaurant of 1999” by Esquire, and restaurant reviewer Phil Vettel of the Chicago Tribune named Hogan one of the top 10 chefs in Chicago.
In 2001 Hogan then joined Glenn Keefer as executive chef where he developed a menu of Chicago-style dishes based on American classics, creating an iconic Chicago restaurant. Keefers was named best in Chicago for steak by the food network and top 10 steakhouses in America by Playboy Magazine. In January 2014, Hogan left Keefer’s to serve as executive chef at Chef Tony Mantuano’s first non-Italian restaurant River Roast, located along the iconic Chicago River. Hogan and Mantuano have been friends for over 20 years and enjoy collaborating on the contemporary American tavern fare menu.