Jenner Tomaska grew up in the southern suburbs of Chicago; at 14, he began his professional culinary career as a cook and dishwasher at a local restaurant. He went on to attend Johnson & Wales in Providence, Rhode Island, graduating with degrees in both Culinary Arts and Food Service Management.
After graduation, Jenner worked in Hilton Head before returning back to Chicago to explore the fine dining scene. He eventually landed in Chicago as a tournant at MK under chefs Michael Kornick and Erick Williams. After two years at MK, Jenner left to join the team at Next, where he was quickly promoted to Sous Chef and then Chef de Cuisine in May 2015.
Jenner was a finalist for the prestigious James Beard Rising Star Chef in 2016. He was promoted to Executive Chef in April 2016. While he favors classic French techniques, Jenner continually exhibits an enthusiasm to build his knowledge and skillset with the dynamic and ever-changing menus of Next.
Chef de Cuisine
Growing up in New York City, Ed has worked in restaurants since he was a teenager. Ed started as a line cook and was eventually named Sous Chef at Vesta Trattoria in Queens before transition to Perilla where he honed his skills under chef Harold Dieterle . In 2013, Ed and his wife Alexis moved to Chicago when he received the opportunity to work at Next,and Alexis received a position at the Aviary. He was immediately recognized for his dedication and passion and in 2015, promoted to Sous Chef and eventually Chef de Cuisine in July 2016.
Benjamin moved to Chicago from San Francisco, where he spent nine years cooking. He came to the Alinea Group to work with the opening of the Aviary as a drink maker. Over the last five years, Benjamin has taken on several roles at the Aviary, in both front and back of the house. Most recently in December 2015, Benjamin was promoted to Service Manager of Next Restaurant.