Stewart Woodman back in town, hopes to fix kitchen at Lela

Stewart Woodman is back in town.

Stewart Woodman is back in town.

We thought we'd seen the last of him. When big-deal, big-personality, big-attitude chef Stewart Woodman exited his Workshop at Union project last year, he high-tailed it out of town to a Rochester restaurant, saying he was "moving on for good."

We were under the impression that he'd had enough of the Cities and all of the drama and dust-ups surrounding his work. 

Well, it looks like he can't stay away. He's back in town, but this time in the 'burbs. He's accepted the executive chef position at Lela, the high-end Italian and crudo concept at the Sheraton Bloomington. Lela got off to a strong start, then hit some serious bumps when its opening chef, John Mullen, departed early in the project. It will be interesting to see if Woodman can right the ship. When we reviewed it earlier this year, signs of big trouble were written all over it. 

In any case, it's a high-profile move for Lela, and seems like proof that the company is serious about setting things straight. That is, of course, if the talented but excitable and peripatetic chef can keep the flames set to low. We'll keep an eye on it. 


5601 W. 78th St., Bloomington