With over two decades of hospitality experience, Mark Sparacino has a wealth of knowledge in the food and beverage business locally, nationally and internationally. Initially attending the University of Loyola for a degree in marketing, Spracino soon set his sights on a new career path and decided to pursue his passion for cooking.
Sparacino’s years of hands-on food preparation is augmented by years of class work locally as well as at the esteemed Culinary Institute of America in Napa Valley. He spent his early years cumulating front and back of house experience from popular Chicagoland restaurants including Avanzare and Topo Gigio, before starting his own catering company, Traveling Fare, in 1994.
After honing his culinary craft and growing his business acumen, he opened Sparacino’s — his first namesake Italian restaurant that graced the charming Oak Park neighborhood in 2001. Shortly after, Chef Mark commenced his second project and opened Prosecco as Owner and Chef in River North’s lively and bustling atmosphere.
At Prosecco, Sparacino merges his love for Italian cuisine, aptitude for cooking, and inspiration from his travels to create a menu of regional Italian favorites with bold flavors and worldly ingredients. His deep passion for cooking, entertaining people and his first-hand knowledge of how to run prosperous hospitality businesses has been the guiding light for Prosecco’s success.
Mark has joined the Fame team as the Executive Chef Partner, spearheading all culinary elements of this exciting new project.
Chef de Cuisine
Born and raised in Chicago, Darryl Williams had an inkling early in life that he wanted to be a chef. He grew up watching his grandmother cook and, starting at age 13, started to shadow her in the kitchen, learning everything he possibly could.
Williams attended Le Cordon Bleu where he focused on French techniques; after graduating Darryl completed an externship with renowned chef Mark Sparacino at his River North restaurant Prosecco. Over the next few years Williams continued to hone his skills with positions at popular Windy City restaurants GT Prime and RPM Seafood. The father of two always stayed connected to Mark Sparacino, who had become mentor and inspiration to Darryl. When Sparacino joined Fame as the Chef Partner he tapped Williams to join the team as Chef de Cuisine.
Williams is thrilled to be part of Fame’s culinary team and is proud of the opening menu, which is described as eclectic. His favorite things on the menu are the Smoked Stuffed Medjool Dates and Grilled Lamb Chops with Balsamic & Rosemary Glaze – both of which he says are “must order” items for all Fame guests!
Outside of the kitchen, he enjoys spending time with his two kids, listening to music and playing basketball.
Fame Supper Club offers modern American fare, classic cocktails, and live music under one roof. The bi-level concept will feature an elevated dining experience on the first floor, and on the second floor a nightclub & private event space.
The first floor boasts a dramatic yet, intimate vibe: dark lacquer floors, textured wallpaper and plush seating. Decadent chandeliers and thin strips of intelligent lighting create an intriguing, sexy juxtaposition. A long, contemporary bar featuring gold panels and stone white top occupies the east side of the space, while the remainder of the room is reserved for dining.
Solo & duo musicians and DJs with accompanying instrumentalists, including violinists and trumpetists, will be on hand each evening to entertain guests.
A curation of local art compliments the interior geometric patterns and decor. The exterior mural is a first time collaboration between Miami’s Adrian Avila and Chicago’s Daniel Dot. The synergy between Avila’s music-inspired figurative forms and Dot’s linear expression reimagines the spirit of the Art Deco era.
Chef Partner Mark Sparacino (chef/owner of beloved River North restaurant Prosecco) created Fame’s dinner menu. While Chef Mark is primarily known for his handmade pastas and Sicilian-style seafood, his culinary expertise reaches far beyond his Italian roots. .
Fame’s beverage menu and bottle service program will feature original recipes for classic cocktails, large format cocktails and Instagram-worthy presentations. Drinks like Lady In The Ashes and The Real McCoy pay homage to the 1920’s and prohibition culture – the era that inspired much of the first floor restaurant’s decor and design. The staple cocktail at a traditional supper club, The Manhattan, will be smoked tableside with bourbon soaked wood chips.
This Fall, Fame’s second floor nightclub will open and offers an intimate environment where guests can enjoy world class DJ’s, bottle service and dancing until late hours. A rotating lineup of local and national talent will create an infectious, high-energy atmosphere.
The 3,700 square foot nightclub features three lounge areas, a state-of-the-art Funktion One audio system and an immersive pixel mapped lighting. The second floor of Fame will be available for private events ranging from birthdays and bachelorette parties to corporate events and charity galas.