Dadi and his family were refugees from Bosnia/ Croatia (former Yugoslavia) , emigrating in 1997. His father and grandfather were also in the restaurant and hotel business. When he graduated from high school, it was a natural to go on to culinary school and don the chef’s toque.
When war erupted in the mid-1990s, a change of venue became the only safe option. Despite the unfortunate circumstances that led to their emigration, Nanut feels lucky to be in America.
Coming from a long line of restaurateurs, Dadi Nanut probably always expected to open his own restaurant one day. It was the Cleveland part that was the twist of fate.
Calling the restaurant business "a genetic tradition" in his family—both his grandparents and great-grandparents were restaurateurs—Nanut attended culinary school in his native Yugoslavia with the full intention of carrying on that tradition.
After 13 years at Rino's Italian Restaurant in Lorain, Nanut opened Ristorante Stella Mia in July 2013 with his wife, Petra, and his parents, Jerry and Adriana. The name comes from the couple's young daughter, Stella, and means "star" in Italian.