He’s been cooking all his life (having a French mother will inspire that). At 20, he was hired by renowned Cleveland chef Parker Bosley and was promoted to Sous Chef within 6 months. Parker was his mentor for several years.
In 2002, after returning from internships with esteemed French chefs Christian Constant in Paris and Michael Richard in Washington, DC, Mike opened South Market Bistro, a small eatery in rural Wooster, Ohio, that specialized in seasonal, chef-driven, locally sourced menus… it was farm-to-table before that term was even introduced.
He then opened The City Square Steakhouse in September of 2008 across the street and transitioned from Executive Chef to Restaurateur. Offering hand-cut steaks, fresh seafood and pastas and an impressive bar, the Steakhouse also served locally sourced burgers – which he noticed were quite popular.
He decided to pursue a burger bar concept for his next venture, and in 2011, Mariola opened the first RAIL in Akron, OH. Specializing in locally sourced burgers, Ohio craft beers and hand-dipped milkshakes, The RAIL now has additional locations in North Olmsted, Canton, Strongsville and Dublin.
When not building new restaurants, Mike and his wife relax by raising their 4 kids, sheep, horses, dogs and cats on their hobby farm in Wooster, Ohio.