NEW ORLEANS — Gary Wollerman, owner of New Orleans’ premier fine dining seafood restaurant GW Fins, was inducted into the Distinguished Restaurants of North America’s Hall of Fame on Monday, September 18th.
Established in 1993, the DiRoNA Hall of Fame has named 64 previous restaurateurs to this esteemed list including legendary restaurateurs Leah Chase and Ruth Fertel. Wollerman is only the seventh New Orleans Restaurateur to receive this distinction. Candidates qualify by having at least 25 years of dedicated service, making significant contributions to the dining industry and their local community.
Wollerman started his restaurant career in 1972 at the first Houlihan’s Restaurant in his hometown of Kansas City. During his 18-year tenure with the company, Wollerman opened and managed numerous restaurants and was named Executive Vice President. He was then hired by Ruth’s Chris Steak House as their Vice President and COO.
Wollerman has established GW Fins as one of the country’s most acclaimed restaurants, consistently included in the Top 10 Fine Dining Restaurants in the US on TripAdvisor. GW Fins’ Executive Chef Michael Nelson was nominated for a James Beard Award for Best Chef in the South.
Wollerman’s attention to detail begins with serving guests the most pristine seafood from the Gulf and around the globe. He personally extols his passionate attitude to ensure that each guest has the ultimate dining experience.
Wollerman has worked tirelessly to create several programs with the specific goal of increasing literacy, self-esteem, and overall education for New Orleans’ youth. He had Little Free Libraries produced and placed outside New Orleans Police Department precincts to forge a positive relationship between New Orleans’ youth and local police officers and established the “Fins Wings For Fins’ Kids” Foundation, where 100% of the proceeds from every order of one of GW Fins’ signature appetizers, Fins Wings, would benefit local youth educational organizations.
Wollerman is omnipresent at GW Fins, welcoming guests, serving food and recommending wines. Many of the staff have worked at GW Fins for more than a decade.
GW Fins is located at 808 Bienville Street in New Orleans’ French Quarter and is open nightly for dinner. Please visit www.gwfins.com