Chef José Andrés
The Pioneer of Groundbreaking Avant-Garde Cuisines
Considered as the pioneer of Spanish tapas in the USA, internationally-recognized Chef José Andrés is known for his innovative and groundbreaking avant-garde restaurants. At the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, the renowned chef runs three different restaurants – China Poblano, E by José Andrés and Jaleo.
About Chef José Andrés
José Ramón Andrés Puerta was born on July 13, 1969 in Mieres, Spain. He started his culinary career when he interned at the world-famous El Bulli Restaurant in Catalonia, Spain with friend, mentor, and equally-famous Ferran Adrià. He worked in El Bulli for three years from 1988 to 1990.
In 1991, José came to the US to work at El Dorado Petit in New York City and just two years after helped opened Jaleo with Rob Wilder and Roberto Alvarez. The three of them head up one of the first commercially and critically-acclaimed tapas restaurants in the US, therefore setting the standard for other tapas restaurants in the country.
Countless accolades for Chef José Andrés followed in the years after – took over Cafe Atlantico in 1995, opened the 2nd Jaleo restaurant in 2001 and in 2002 created and opened Zaytinya in Washington D.C., an innovative mezze restaurant inspired by Turkish, Greek, and Lebanese cuisines. Zaytinya marks the chef’s extraordinary skill in avant-garde culinary cooking. One year later, José was awarded his first James Beard Award for Best Chef in the Mid-Atlantic and in 2004 Chef of the Year by Bon Appétit Magazine which recognized his expertise on the success of Jaleo, Zaytinya and Cafe Atlantico.
In 2006, the chef’s rising influence in the culinary world made him create ThinkFoodGroup with culinary partner Rob Wilder. ThinkFoodGroup oversees Chef José’s restaurants and culinary endeavours and later ballooned as a famous dining concept creator in Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, Miami and Puerto Rico.
It is in 2010 when Chef José Andrés brings his culinary mastery to Las Vegas and opened Jaleo, China Poblano, and E by José Andrés in the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. The very same year, José Andrés gave a lecture on culinary physics at Harvard University as part of their new course, “Science and Cooking.”
Perhaps one of the highlights of Chef José Andrés career is being named by TIME Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2012. This is not only because of his culinary expertise and avant-garde style but also because of his founding of World Central Kitchen, a humanitarian organization that aims at providing practical solutions to end hunger and poverty in some parts of the world. Besides this, Chef José is an active volunteer at D.C. Central Kitchen where he gives job training for the homeless, an entrepreneur, a teacher, an artist and author of several cookbooks including A Taste of Spain in America and Spanish Dishes for the American Kitchen. Indeed, the renowned chef is bigger than any kitchen can contain.
He appeared in several TV Programs like The Ellen Show and spoke at Ted Talk with his talk: creativity in cooking can solve our biggest challenges. Chef José is also a teacher at George Washington University teaching the course, “The World on a Plate: How Food Shapes Civilization.”
In 2014, President Barack Obama named him an Outstanding American Citizen by Choice and in January, 2015 opened China Chilcano which is a modern Peruvian restaurant showcasing Chinese and Japanese culinary influences. The restaurant further stabilize Chef José’s mastery in avant-garde culinary vision.
The Culinary Miracles of Chef José Andrés
CBS Network of America featured Chef José Andrés in 60 minutes hosted by Anderson Cooper. The show mentioned the chef’s humble beginnings: coming to America from Spain with nothing more than 50 bucks in his pocket and a set of cooking knives in his bag. These days, he is nothing less than a genuine American success story with restaurants under his name opening from coast-to-coast. The chef’s enormous personality is charming Americans to do changes in their eating habits. Yet, what really made Chef José Andrés famous is his avant-garde approach to cooking.
“Eating has to be fun,” shares the chef, “it has to be a social event but where you have fun, where you are relaxed.” The chef’s dishes are cutting edge and each comes with a story that only Chef José Andrés can describe in passionate details. Respected food writer Rachel Reichl answers, “expect wonders,” when asked what to expect in Chef José Andrés’ cooking.
Chef José Andrés is also one of the pioneers of molecular gastronomy, a cooking technique that embraces science and technology, one that deconstructs food by separating ingredients and re-combining them in certain ways to create cutting-edge and flavorful culinary results.
This 60 Minute episode was posted in Youtube on August, 2010 and also showed a little bit about the chef’s volunteer work. His passion in helping the people who can’t come to his restaurants is both convincing and heart-warming.
Read more about Chef José Andrés
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