If there was ever an example of a man who understands the benefits of delayed gratification, the sacrifice and daily grind day in and day out for years, it would be the owner of Michael T’s in New Hartford, Michael Trunfio.
It’s been a decade since I stopped working for the man but I still swing my his restaurant every chance I get.
He gave me the opportunity as a bus boy, takeout and salad preparer, cook, and the sous chef. Working under the equally brilliant, Chef Visalli, who is now a doctor. He have me the freedom to create my own dishes which was something I took much pride in.
Mick knew how to hustle. With three young daughters to support, he put in his 20 years at the post office while simultaneously working behind the stove and running the business end of the family restaurant he took over from his father. The man never stopped. Working till 5 sorting mail then hustling over to the restaurant for service.
Did I mention that the food is amazing? Of course it is. Serving up classic Italian American dishes as well as many house specialities. What makes it so amazing is it’s simplicity. The combination of a few high quality ingredients in a conscientious way to create something delicious. I and many consider their Chicken Riggies and Utica Greens the best. But don’t overlook the fish fry, the chicken franchaise, or Haddock Gianna.
When I see Mick now,. I see a more relaxed, light hearted version. When I see pictures on Facebook, he looks to be enjoying life a little more. He is also able to focus more on expanding his business with the addition of the ever popular food truck.
Mick…if you read this. Thank you for the opportunity all those years ago. The experience you gave me was invaluable.