In 2011, Kowalczuk moved from Atlanta back to Pittsburgh where he was born and raised. To his amazement, what had been a shot & beer town had suddenly become one of the countries fastest growing markets for food and beverage in the country. Pittsburgh had become a world class destination from a dirty coal and steel town. Kowalczuk quickly launched his Art of Mixology series in downtown Pittsburgh first at the defunked Bossa Nova then onto Olive or Twist a local hot spot in the cultural district.
After many years of success with the Art of Mixology Educational Series, The Cocktail Chef branched off and teamed up with organizational specialist Randi Strunk to establish LunyPop Industries LLC in hopes of taking the Cocktail Chef brand to the next level. From 2014 to the end of 2016, Steven and Randi focused on executing sold out mixology classes in Pittsburgh's most popular bars, intermixed with consulting projects including: four RBG grill restaurants in four Park Inn hotels, Presidents Pub in Washington PA, as well as two mixology events and a speaking engagement for 180 executives/managers of Pittsburgh's Parkhurst Dining.
2017 turned out to be our best year to date with consulting for Arlecchino Ristorante & Alla Famiglia as well as a full calendar of events ranging from home mixology parties, corporate team-building events, and a massive Holly Ball event for SouthPointe Golf Club which turned into a full calendar of 2018 events. With all the new services and products available, Lunypop LLC started to DBA (doing business as) Steel City Mixology in order to create an umbrella for all of our offerings.
As of 2018 our business has grown significantly since we appeared on Pittsburgh Today Live to feature our newest service called Craft Bar Pop Up in early spring. With a full calendar of SPGC events, custom mixology events, craft bar service, cooking demos, happy hour events and pop ups, we had just enough time to finish the Alla Famiglia project and start preparing for the next major consulting job to be announced in early 2019.
Stay tuned for the big announcement! Cheers.
Steven Kowalczuk, a.k.a The Cocktail Chef, began his cocktail career in Pittsburgh's Southside nightclub Nick's Fat City in 1993 before moving to Atlanta, GA. in 1996. As the premiere city of the south with continuous growth since the Olympics, Atlanta proved to be the perfect testing ground for the chef's cutting edge creations. As one of Atlanta top cocktail designers, Kowalczuk worked with both Buckhead Life Restaurant Group and Concentrics Hospitality at many of their famous Atlanta concepts where he was repeatedly hailed as one of the top mixologists in the city.
Kowalczuk's award winning work has been featured in print, on the web & television. As a season one contestant on Masterchef with Gordon Ramsay, Steven left for Los Angeles in 2010 to film the hugely popular MasterChef USA. The Cocktail Chef has been featured in three filmed video series for eHow.com, and has been written up in National Restaurant News, Nightclub & Bar Magazine, and InStyle magazine. A highlight of Kowalczuk's career was being chosen as one of the Top 100 mixologists in the U.S. for the Grand Marnier Mixology Summit hosted in Vail Colorado, both 2008 & 2009. In the later part of 2008, with over 20 years in the industry, education became a main focus for Kowalczuk and soon after he created the wildly popular educational series entitled the Art of Mixology in which he teaches aspiring mixologists from all over the country how to mix gourmet libations like the professionals. During this time, The Cocktail Chef produced three television pilots all themed around cocktails, spirits, and the life of a mixologist.