Kevin Maher is co-owner of ITA 101, an Authentic Italian restaurant at 20 S. Main Street in Medford, NJ. Kevin is eager to join his friend and business partner, Tony Sparacio, in this new business venture.
Kevin’s passion for food was inspired by his grandmother. From a young age, he watched and tasted, in her kitchen, as she prepared traditional family recipes from their ancestral town, Ascoli Piceno, in the Marche region of Italy.
Upon graduating from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a degree in hotel/restaurant management, Kevin decided to continue his formal training at The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in Hyde Park, NY . After graduating from the CIA in February 1999, Kevin made his way to Lake Maggiore where he apprenticed at Il Sol di Ronco, a Relais and Chateaux resort.
In Milan, Kevin had the good fortune to join the staff at Il Luogo di Aimo E Nadia. Owners, Aimo and Nadia Moroni, originally from Tuscany ,instilled in Kevin the importance of using fresh, local ingredients. Kevin credits Nadia’s high standards (and watchful eye!) during his three year tenure there for his mastery of pasta and risotto.
While at Restaurant Il Calvi , chef Giacomo Montelli’s use of traditional Sicialian ingredients intrigued Kevin. Montelli’s use of citrus, olives, capers and fennel with fresh fish remain a favorite of Kevin. Other highlights of Chef Kevin’s 14 year culinary experience in Italy include his time spent at restaurants La Brisa, Trussardi Alla Scala, and Osteria dei Vecchi Sapori.
In September 2012, Kevin returned to the U.S. and met with Chef Chris Painter in Philadelphia. At Il Pittore (Chris’ restaurant in partnership with Stephen Starr) Kevin prepared his pasta dishes to rave reviews until his departure in July 2015.
Chef Kevin is a native of South Jersey where he and his five siblings were raised and educated in Medford Township. Kevin is an alumnus of Lenape High School class of ’92.