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Legends chef appears on morning TV show

Bridget Keating | Thursday, April 27, 2006

Legends of Notre Dame – a facility that serves as a restaurant, bar, alehouse, club and concert venue – can now include television set in its list of uses.

South Bend’s WSJV Fox 28 news station has recently teamed with Legends chef Giuseppe Macerata in its three-hour long “Wake Up!” morning program. Legends general manager Aaron Perri said the collaboration began when the show asked Macerata to appear on a St. Patrick’s Day cooking segment. “Wake Up!” has welcomed the Legends chef a total of four times.

In anticipation for last week’s Blue-Gold weekend, Macerata said he whipped up Blue and Gold wings in addition to tailgate favorites on a grill outside the restaurant. Other segments on the show have featured themed meals showcasing Legends special dishes.

“It’s a great situation because they fill a segment and we get tons of publicity,” Perri said. “We are a campus restaurant and our goal is to be craveable and successfully compete with the chain casual dining rooms like Houlihan’s and Friday’s.”

Macerata began his career at the University ten years ago. After advancing through the chef apprentice program and serving at various campus venues – including the Morris Inn – he landed a position at Legends.

“I enjoy a challenge and making anything – as long as it’s done well, is healthy and nourishing,” he said. “[At Legends] we look anywhere and use every possible resource for new ideas. We have excellent signature dishes that showcase our kitchen’s ability.”

Macerata, whose career began at his father’s pizza shop in Michigan, said his local fame has spurred jovial phone calls from friends and family – and customers have responded positively as well.

“To see a dining room full of people having a good time and enjoying their meals is what we strive for,” Perri said.

Although the morning program can lengthen the days for Macerata and Perri to nearly 16 hours, both said the television project has been an enjoyable experience. Perri said Legends would continue to collaborate as long as Fox 28 is willing.