“I believe in putting my love and passion for food and service on every plate. Dirty® is my style of living and my style of cooking. It’s a combination of love, life, passion and a way of being. Love and share!"

Ian Russo’s cooking reflects a mixture of his culinary experiences and an impressive range of flavors and styles. He fell in love with cooking and kitchen life as a teenager, working at an IHOP in his hometown of Brooklyn, New York. Preparing himself for a career to match his passion, he graduated from New York Technical College’s School of Hotel and Restaurant Management and set off on a series of adventures in professional kitchens around the world.

He held positions at New York’s La Reserve and Le Chantilly (as sous-chef), absorbing as much as he could. Like many young chefs, Ian set out to travel the world to hone his craft and to learn the many cuisines and techniques of cooking. Wanting to work with the masters, he made a pilgrimage to France, where he trained at legendary chef André Daguin’s Hôtel de France, in Gascony. On his days off, Russo, using his Michelin Guide, would take buses or hitchhike to top eateries in Europe. Within a year, he’d enjoyed a meal at every three-star rated restaurant in France, Switzerland and Spain.

With the help of French friends who served as translators in his interview, Ian successfully landed an internship with master chef Michel Guérard. He went on to work at other top restaurants, including Comme Chez Soi in Belgium and France’s Georges Blanc.

Russo then returned to New York City and the St. Regis Hotel, and as sous-chef helped open Gray Kunz’s Lespinasse, which served Asian-accented French cuisine. Wanderlust struck again, and after a year he headed west—way west, to Hawaii.


There, he learned a completely new style of cooking—Hawaiian fusion cuisine—from Roy Yamaguchi, at the famed Roy’s.

Ian returned to New York with his new skills and worked as the poissonier (master fish cook) at Bouley until he was offered the top spot at Pelago, preparing Mediterranean-influenced cuisine.

Ian once again traded his east-coast life for the sunny shores of Hawaii. This time, he served as executive chef at the “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” proclaimed “Most romantic restaurant in the world”, the award-winning Michel’s in Honolulu. He returned once more to the east coast to run the stoves at Café Nuovo in Providence, RI.

After years in top-rated kitchens, Chef Russo was lured back to New York, this time to Manhattan’s Upper East Side, where he opened his eponymous restaurant, IAN. It was there that he crafted his signature Dirty Drunken Rib-eye, which was honored with New York Magazine’s “Best Steak in the City” Award. He used similar innovation in his newest culinary creation, the Dirtyburger®, which has received critical praise.

In a city known around the world for its cheesesteaks, Ian’s signature DIRTY Cooking® style became a culinary force on the Philadelphia food scene. There, he perfected his style and planted the seeds for what was to come, the first fully branded Dirty restaurant.

Opened in the fall of 2013 in Plainview, Dirtyburger allows the lucky residents who live on Long Island (although we’ve had customers drive all the way from New Jersey) to experience Ian’s signature creations, and all of the tastes on his constantly evolving menu. It truly is the result of an ongoing journey of a lifetime.