Pat Bruno, Former Chicago Sun-Times Critic, Passes Away

The long-time restaurant critic in the Chicago food scene died Tuesday

Former Chicago Sun-Times restaurant critic Pat Bruno passed away Tuesday night after a three-year battle with brain cancer. Bruno was 79.

The longtime writer and personality in the Chicago food scene was known for his love for Italian food and pizza, the Chicago Sun-Times reports, penning five cookbooks under the name Pasquale Bruno, with one dedicated solely to pizza.

Bruno got his start in college in Vermont, working as a waiter, cook, bouncer, and bus driver, then spent four years in the Air Force before working with Sears in Chicago. He eventually became a partner in a chain of cooking stores called Cook's Mart. Through his career, Bruno hunted for truffles, had some lemonade with Elvis, and taught Oprah to toss pizza dough.

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"I never had a chance to break bread with the man," ABC 7's food reporter Steve Dolinksky told Time Out Chicago, "but what I wouldn't have given to go on a pizza binge around town with him."