Staff

Executive Chef / Owner: Jim Fiala

Jim honors his classical French and Italian training at both of his restaurants and is always looking for ways to incorporate this with farm fresh ingredients into simple, beautifully-prepared food. A St. Louis native and graduate of Parkway West Senior High, Jim received a B.B.A. from Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University in 1987.  His love for cooking began while he worked in the kitchen on the Clipper Cruise Line.  He went to San Francisco and attended the California Culinary Academy and then graduated in 1992.  In 1997 after working in restaurants in San Francisco, Chicago, New York City and Puerto Rico, he returned to St. Louis. In 1998, Jim opened The Crossing Restaurant, followed by Acero’s opening in 2007. Jim and his wife Melissa, another St. Louis native, have three children – Lily, Luke and Sam.

Jim Fiala

Manager: Adam Gnau

Adam was born in St. Louis and raised in suburban Chicago and suburban Omaha. He attended the Cooking and Hospitality Institute of Chicago. On a trip to St. Louis in 2004 to visit his sister, he met Jim Fiala who hired him to cook at Liluma in the Central West End. Later, he worked at The Crossing until 2007, when he became chef there followed by being named chef at Acero in 2008. In the last year, Adam has been our Front of the House Manager, bringing an exceptional approach to the restaurant with his previous background. Adam’s family at home includes his wife Anna and their sons Augustus and Oliver. Along with his family, Adam enjoys float trips, fishing and golf.

Chef: Eric Gibbs

Eric was born in St. Louis and grew up in Webster Groves and South City. His culinary interests started early, at age 15. After having lived in Key West and Chicago, Eric discovered that he was eager to return to his hometown. He began working at local restaurants Frazier’s, Tangerine and Kitchen K before aligning with Jim Fiala in 2008 at Liluma and eventually, Acero. Eric has a passion for technique and enjoys experimenting with different seasonings to bring the flavors of Italy to the dishes he serves our guests every night at Acero. On a personal note, Eric is happily married to Julie, has a son he adores, and loves Volkswagens and retro vehicles.