Executive pastry chef Meg Galus has departed Boka Restaurant Group after six years with the high-profile restaurant group. Pastry sous chef Kim Mok, who worked alongside Galus at both Boka and at the Park Hyatt, will take over the post. Galus announced her departure last month over Instagram.
Mok, who grew up in Lincolnwood with a father who worked in the restaurant industry, is a graduate of the French Pastry School and has also been with Boka group for the past six years. Her first task as executive pastry chef will be to build new teams at Boka and Alla Vita, the upcoming Italian restaurant replacing Bellemore in the West Loop. “I’ll be flexing my creative muscles at Boka and eating LOTS of gelato at Alla Vita,” she says in a newsletter sent Tuesday.
After an amicable parting from Boka with the good wishes of her bosses and colleagues, Galus is striking out for new adventures: this winter, she’ll be leading a culinary tour of Vietnam with Modern Adventure, a travel company that hires experts in different fields to guide travelers around the world. The week-long trip is all inclusive, costs $4,750 per person, and departs in February.
Galus joined Boka in 2015, and during her tenure she was the opening pastry chef at Momotaro, Swift & Sons, and Cold Storage in Fulton Market. She was most recently the executive pastry chef at Boka in Lincoln Park and Somerset in Gold Coast. She’s also won an armload of awards and has twice been named a finalist for Outstanding Pastry Chef by the James Beard Foundation; more importantly, she’s created dozens of beloved desserts, including an oatmeal cream pie that, in the words of food writer Michael Nagrant, “pwned Lil’ Debbie.”
And in other news...
— Tyson Foods, the largest meat company in the U.S., has decreed that all its employees be vaccinated for COVID-19 by November 1 in order to prevent another wave of infections like the ones that disabled the production lines last year, according to a report from Bloomberg via Crain’s. Tyson has about 1,100 employees in the Chicago area, spread across offices in the West Loop, Downers Grove, and a Chicago production facility. New employees will need to be vaccinated before their start date, and front-line employees will receive $200 once Tyson verifies their vaccination status.
— Whole Foods has announced a $9.95 Prime delivery fee starting August 30 in several markets, including Chicago. Previously, delivery was free for orders over $35, according to Crain’s. “This service fee helps to cover operating costs, so we can continue to offer the same competitive everyday prices in-store and online at Whole Foods Market,” the company explained in a notice sent to shoppers last week. Grocery pickup remains free.