Carnevor, a fine dining restaurant located in Downtown Milwaukee, opened in 2006 and has grown into one of Wisconsin’s most acclaimed fine dining restaurant destinations, consistently topping year-end “Best Of” lists. Executive Chef Mario Giuliani’s fine dining menu offers exquisite USDA prime beef and Japanese Wagyu beef. The wine list has more than 785 selections, curated by Certified Sommelier and SURG Corporate Wine Director Joshua Steiner.
Owners Mike Polaski and Omar Shaikh would like to thank you for your interest in Carnevor Steakhouse Moderne. Your dining experience will be of the highest quality.
Chef Mario Giuliani
Carnevor Steakhouse Moderne Executive Chef
Born and raised in Wisconsin, Chef Mario Giuliani realized his passion for cooking while visiting his family in Italy. Through childhood experiences, he learned the finer aspects of superior products, ingredients, and organic gardening. The Italian culture sparked his fascination for cooking. While attending the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Mario developed a strong fondness for cooking, which ignited his culinary career. Mario began working at restaurants such as Z-teca, Oakland Tattoria and Flannery's. Once he became seasoned in this field, Giuliani aspired to work for Milwaukee's Premier Steakhouse, Carnevor.
Carnevor’s acclaimed reputation triggered a desire to enhance his skills by learning techniques used in proficient fine dining restaurants. Chef Giuliani attained this goal; he has been with Carnevor for 6 years and was appointed Executive Sous Chef in 2011. Mario has since had opportunities to serve prestigious clientele, generate innovative cuisines and work with the finest chefs in Milwaukee such as Carnevor’s Executive Chef Jarvis Williams. Working at Carnevor and with SURG owned Hidden Creek Farm, Giuliani has honed his skills in cooking and aging fine meats, utilizing premium products including Wagyu beef and Mangalitsa pork. Mario has also experienced the ground floor development of SURG’s state-certified butcher facility.
Mario’s Italian family and community roots have inspired him to lend his time and services to help contribute to charitable organizations such as the American Liver Foundation, and the Milwaukee JCC with its annual KidShare event. Since joining Carnevor, Giuliani has collaborated with diverse and creative chefs to serve delectable dishes and has exhibited expertise in the education of several aspiring young chefs in Milwaukee. Carnevor is proud to have Chef Mario Giuliani as Executive Chef.
Certified Sommelier and SURG Beverage Director
Joshua Steiner got his start in the restaurant industry more than 16 years ago with goals to develop a deeper knowledge of how to run the front of the house of a restaurant. Joshua honed his expertise over the years by immersing himself in highly respected wine books and maps, executing blind taste tests, and quizzing himself with the help of his wife, Kim.
Joshua describes himself as a lover of all wine and when attempting to choose a favorite, “It depends on where I am and what I am doing. I enjoy all different varieties. I am always down to share a bottle of something extraordinary.” Joshua has visited nearly two hundred vineyards stretching across many wine regions from California to Oregon to Italy.
At Carnevor, Joshua’s passion has helped him create an impressive wine program that hits all price points and introduces people to amazing wines they wouldn't normally find at any restaurant in Milwaukee. With the other concepts in the SURG portfolio, Joshua is implementing wine programs customized to each location that offer guests quality options by the bottle or glass.
Joshua’s determination keeps him focused on new market trends and in tune with his audience when making his wine selections. Now that he’s a Court of Master Sommeliers Level II Certified Sommelier, he’s preparing for his Level III exams.
SURG Pastry Chef
Chef Rachel grew up in Neenah, WI and moved to the greater Milwaukee area in 2008 to be closer to her brothers. After settling in she decided to attend college with a major in Business Management and Photo Journalism. After 2 years into the program, she decided this career path was not for her, and decided to focus instead on something that she had loved doing her entire life- baking!
Rachel attended MATC beginning in 2013 for the Baking & Pastry Arts Program. She enrolled in a class taught by Kurt Fogle, the former pastry chef for SURG Restaurant Group and now partner in Bass Bay Brewhouse in Muskego. During her time spent at MATC perusing her degree, she also worked as an intern in the pastry department at SURG Restaurant Group.
While working with Kurt, she learned how to look at familiar desserts and flavors but give them a modern twist. Before working at SURG, Rachel worked as an Instructor for Wilton specializing in teaching children’s cake decorating classes and a bakery in the town of Port Washington.
At SURG Restaurant Group, we recognize and seize the opportunity to exceed Milwaukee's expectations for dining and entertainment. SURG is headquartered in Milwaukee, with six critically acclaimed venues in the downtown vicinity, including Carnevor, Bugsy's Back Alley Speakeasy, Gouda's Italian Deli, Lucid Light Lounge, SURG on the Water, and The Garden.
With growth comes responsibility, and SURG believes that community involvement is key to forming a long-lasting relationship with Milwaukee and its residents. Having partnered with many charitable organizations and outreach programs, We are dedicated to the continued development and vitality of Milwaukee and its surrounding areas.
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