PITTSBURGH, Aug. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- AIRMALL® USA, the leading airport concessions developer in North America and operator of the AIRMALL at Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT), joined Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald, the Allegheny County Airport Authority, United Concessions Group, The Paradies Shops and celebrity Chef Michael Symon in marking the grand opening of Bar Symon at PIT on Monday August 20, 2012 at 10:00 a.m. The ribbon-cutting ceremony and program took place at the restaurant, located in the airport's Center Core.
"It is only fitting that Iron Chef Michael Symon would choose Pittsburgh, the Iron City, and the Pittsburgh International Airport as the site of his first airport concept," said Fitzgerald. "Since its opening in 1992, the airport has been a pioneer in air service and concessions, and it remains a key economic driver for western Pennsylvania. The addition of Chef Symon's restaurant propels the airport to even greater heights, and we're thrilled to officially welcome Chef Symon's restaurant to our airport."
"This fall, Pittsburgh International Airport will celebrate its 20th anniversary," added Brad Penrod, CEO, Allegheny County Airport Authority. "As we look forward to this milestone, we also reflect on the many accomplishments that have enabled this airport to maintain its enviable leadership position within our industry. The opening of Bar Symon is certainly an exciting chapter to add to the airport's 20-year history."
"At AIRMALL, we are always looking for opportunities to showcase the talents of cutting-edge chefs who know how to please the most discerning palate," continued Jay Kruisselbrink, vice president of development, AIRMALL USA. "We anticipate that Bar Symon will become a destination for travelers coming to and from our city and a hallmark of the unique, high-quality dining concepts offered by the AIRMALL at Pittsburgh International Airport."
Michael Symon has wowed audiences nationwide with his exuberant cooking style and currently serves as a co-host of ABC's "The Chew." He has also earned the title of Food Network's "The Next Iron Chef" and has inspired home cooks with his popular cookbook "Live to Cook: Recipes and Techniques to Rock Your Kitchen." At Bar Symon, diners can sample Chef Symon's creative twists on comfort food classics, all made with the freshest ingredients from local purveyors. Signature dishes include the Lola Burger topped with a fried egg and pickled red onions; Lola Fries with sea salt and fresh rosemary; and several varieties of baked macaroni and cheese. The restaurant offers a fun and relaxed atmosphere where travelers can unwind and enjoy a great meal. Its interior was designed to reflect a sense of history and authenticity while capturing the traditional, relaxed feeling found in the classic cafes and breweries of France.
During the grand opening for Bar Symon, travelers and attendees enjoyed samples of the restaurant's inventive cuisine. In addition, a select number of travelers that visited the restaurant received complimentary autographed cookbooks from Chef Symon.
"It's very exciting to see my first airport restaurant come to fruition," said Symon. "My hope is that travelers will sense my love of food and cooking when they dine at Bar Symon."
Bar Symon is a joint venture operated by United Concessions Group and The Paradies Shops.
"We are proud to partner with various key stakeholders in the airport concessions industry to introduce new, fresh and exciting concepts such as Bar Symon while continuing our mission of delivering first class dining experiences to today's traveler," said Gregg Paradies, CEO of The Paradies Shops. "We're additionally pleased to have worked collaboratively with United Concessions Group and Chef Symon to launch Chef Symon's first airport restaurant in Pittsburgh."
Founded in 1992, the AIRMALL at PIT pioneered the developer model for airport concessions across North America by introducing "Regular Mall Pricing... Guaranteed." Passengers pay no more for goods and services at the AIRMALL than they would pay at a comparable nearby store or restaurant.
For the past several years, the AIRMALL at PIT has taken first place among U.S. airports in the food, shops and amenities category in Conde Nast Traveler's Annual Business Travel Awards.
AIRMALL® USAis the developer and manager of the retail, food and beverage operations at Pittsburgh International Airport, Boston Logan International Airport (Terminals B and E), Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport, and Cleveland Hopkins International Airport. The leading airport concessions model in North America, AIRMALL USA continues to boast among the highest per-passenger spends on the continent and consistently receives accolades for innovation and customer service. AIRMALL USA is owned by Prospect Capital Corporation, a leading New York investment company founded in 1988. For more information on AIRMALL USA, visit www.airmallusa.com.