Michael Carroll, Co-Founder & Head Brewer
A native of suburban Chicago, Michael Carroll first began as a certified Chef, graduating from the New England Culinary Institute in Vermont in 1995. Over the past 20 years, he has traveled across the U.S. and world, cultivating his diverse culinary talents and passion for brewing.
Carroll’s ingenuity served to bolster the regionally inspired creations of Nantucket Island’s American Seasons, Cory Schreiber’s landmark farm-to-table menus at Wildwood in Portland and Thomas Keller’s authentic French bistro fare at Bouchon in Napa Valley. Carroll also boasts extensive experience at various restaurants in the Caribbean, prior to joining Alinea’s service team in 2006. He rapidly ascended through the ranks as a food runner and back waiter before becoming the only baker in Alinea’s 10-year history. Carroll’s talents took shape in innovative bread recipes aptly paired with Achatz’s highly progressive cuisine.
In 2009, he chose to pursue his beer brewing ambitions, taking a position as a brewer for Half Acre Beer Co. in Chicago. Since then, Carroll has exhibited a mastery in brewing traditions, and a number of his original recipes have graced the tables of many popular Chicago restaurants, notably including Achatz’s Next Restaurant.
Band of Bohemia fully showcases Carroll’s ability to craft beers that specifically pair with the foods being prepared, adhering to the philosophy that one can create a unique beer that is appropriate, if not essential, to a finer dining experience.
CRAIG SINDELAR, Co-Founder & DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS
Craig Sindelar is a Midwest native, with a distinguished career in the restaurant industry that is comprised of over 20 years of exceptional service experience at a number of award-winning establishments throughout the U.S. and worldwide.
Beginning along the Mississippi Gulf Coast in the early 1990s, Sindelar has showcased his distinctive talents at restaurants across the country and abroad. After establishing residency in Spain in 1998, he served as Assistant Manager at Hotel Castelar in Santander before securing the position of Assistant Sommelier at the Michelin two-star Akelarre Restaurant in San Sebastian. During his European tenure, he was the first American selected by the Spanish Ministry of Work and Social Subjects to attend the respected Hotel-School “Bellamar” in Marbella, Spain – an exclusive school only admitting sixteen applicants each year. In 2003, he graduated with Top Honors as an E.U.-certified Sommelier.
Upon returning to the U.S., Sindelar was integral to the successful opening of the highly anticipated Pluton Restaurant in Chicago in 2004, where he was responsible for managing the wine program and assisting in the orchestration of service. Shortly thereafter, Sindelar was asked to join the opening team for Alinea, Grant Achatz’s internationally acclaimed, Michelin three-star venture, in 2005. Sindelar served as Alinea’s Head Sommelier beginning in 2006, until the opening of Band of Bohemia in late 2015. Sindelar’s personal accolades include:
2006 Jean Banchet Best Sommelier
2007 Mobil Travel Guide “Best of the Best” Service Award
Ian Davis, Executive Head Chef
New York native Ian Davis began his restaurant career as a young 18 year old when a boxing match misfortune required him to take a job as a dishwasher. As fate would have it, a broken hand started a lifelong culinary career. It was two years later that Davis decided to pursue his passion for food and enroll in the Culinary Institute of America (CIA). During his time at CIA, Davis traveled to London for an internship and, after falling in love with the city, stayed for a year to work at the Mandarin Oriental.
Upon returning to the states to finish his degree, he worked part time at NYC's Union Square Cafe, and upon graduation, was offered a chance to work at Jean George from 2008-2010, where he spent a solid two years learning and experiencing a Michelin run restaurant. Chef Ian decided he needed a change and picked a major food city out of a hat, and came to Chicago to work at Michelin starred Tru, and then Blackbird with David Posey. The desire to learn more got the best of Davis, and he traveled back to New York to work at David Chang's Momofuku as Chef de Cuisine from 2013-2016.
Davis' passion for the culinary world expanded when he joined the Band of Bohemia team in 2017. As a firm believer in creating cuisine that "speaks" to guests, Davis draws inspiration from what speaks to him, the true melting pot: New York City. The components that go into each dish at Band of Bohemia are diverse, but the end result is a beautifully married dish that pairs perfectly with their curated beer offerings.
george kovach, lead pastry chef
Growing up in North Carolina, George Kovach fell in love with classic American desserts like peanut butter pie, dirt pudding, Twinkies, and classic cereals- his personal favorite being Fruity Pebbles. Today, Kovach is re-imagining his childhood favorites as lead Pastry Chef of the first ever Michelin-starred brewpub, Band of Bohemia, in Chicago's Ravenswood neighborhood.
Kovach's goal in designing his pastries is to evoke fond childhood memories while enjoying his modern rendition of old favorites. "George adds a playful touch to our menu at Band of Bohemia, always keeping us whimsical and unique," say Band of Bohemia owners Michael and Craig.
Among the many noteworthy restaurants Kovach has worked in are Craft in New York City, TWO, and Entente, both located in Chicago. Kovach was also recently nominated for Eater's 30 Under 30, an honor which few pastry chefs attain.
George Kovach entered the Band of Bohemia team in 2016 and quickly became the driving force behind the pastry program. His ability to create delectably unique desserts is a necessary element in the unforgettable Band of Bohemia experience.
TOM SANTELLE, HEAD OF COFFEE & TEA
Tom Santelle is among numerous Alinea vets to join the team at Band of Bohemia, where he was responsible for innovating the coffee and tea program to match Grant Achatz's highly inventive menu. In addition to Alinea, Santelle's experience includes service at the acclaimed Ellipsis Coffeehouse in Rogers Park.
Under Santelle, Band of Bohemia's coffee and tea program will adhere to the same pairings-based philosophy upon which the team's ambitious concept is based, with the intent to focus on characteristics, such as acid, sugar, minerality and a sense of place to aptly complement both food and beer.
Mario Lopez, Lead Server
Mario Lopez is essential to maintaining Band of Bohemia's outstanding service standards and seamless guest relations in the position of Lead Server.
A core member of Band of Bohemia's opening team, Mario is a Venezuelan native, with deep roots in Boston. He refined his warm, highly approachable service presence and profound knowledge base during his decade-long stint at Josh and Jen Ziskin's La Morra Restaurant in Brookline, Massachusetts before turning his sights toward Chicago to join the service team at Grant Achatz's flagship restaurant, Alinea. He excelled in his role as front waiter, and credits his extreme attention to details and efficient, welcoming service style to his time spent in both cozy, family-run establishments and Michelin three-star environments.
Mario's anticipatory, first-class service perfectly complements the finely tuned talents of Band of Bohemia's specialized culinary and beverage teams -- aiming to offer an unparalleled, pairings-based experience worthy of acclaim and emulation.