2016 Talent
2016 Talent
Dean Eliacostas
Real Urban Barbecue

Dean Eliacostas is the Executive Chef at Real Urban Barbecue, located in downtown Highland Park, Vernon Hills and Oak Brook. Chef Dean...MORE

Brian Enyart
Dos Urban Cantina

Dos Urban Cantina is a restaurant inspired by the boldness and bounty of Mexico. The menu is an original interpretation of Mexican... MORE

Halyna Fedus
Shokolad Pastry & Café

Halyna originally from Ternopil Ukraine became a Chicagoan in the mid-nineties. She began her culinary career in Europe and continued... MORE

Paul Fehribach
Big Jones

Born and raised in the rolling, forested hills of Southern Indiana, Paul Fehribach calls the small town of Jasper home and vividly recalls... MORE

Christopher Fennell

Christopher Fennell grew up in the Western suburbs of Chicago and studied philosophy and English before enrolling in Kendall College... MORE

Andy Foo
Imperial Lamian

Since joining the Imperial Group, Chef Kok Lam “Andy” Foo proved to be a vital leader in both the creative and culinary development... MORE

Phillip Foss
EL ideas

Phillip Foss, Chef and Owner of EL ideas, turns preconceived notions of elite dining upside down with his restaurant hidden on... MORE

Jo-Marie Frigo
Nonna Santi's Biscotti

Jo-Marie Frigo, owner of Nonna Santi's Biscotti, supplies Chicago with traditional, Italian biscotti, based on her Nonna's recipe from... MORE

Dirk and Terry Fucik
Dirk's Fish and Gourmet Shop

Dirk Fucik has been in the fish business for 42 years. Thirteen years ago, Dirk and his wife, Terry opened Dirk’s Fish & Gourmet... MORE

Jose Garces
Garces Group

Renowned Latin-American chef Jose Garces translates his rich cultural traditions and culinary vision into personal dining experiences... MORE

Lorena Garcia

Venezuelan-born restaurateur, TV personality, TV producer and published author Lorena Garcia is currently one of the country’s leading... MORE

Mario Garcia
720 South Bar

Chef Mario’s inspiring culinary career path with the Hilton Chicago started on May 13, 1996, where he served as a Food Runner/Pot Washer. A short... MORE

Robert Garvey
Robert's Pizza Company

Robert Garvey, a New York native, has been an entrepreneur, business owner, playwright, teacher and most recently, certified... MORE

Chris Gawronski
Acanto / The Gage

As executive chef at Acanto and The Gage, Chris Gawronski brings inherent talent and genuine passion to every dish he creates. Growing up... MORE

Carlos Gaytan

Chef Carlos Gaytan’s culinary journey has been one of hard work, persistence and dedication. Having arrived in Chicago in early 1991, he began a career at Sheraton North Shore Hotel, quickly...MORE.

Mindy Gohr
Bittersweet Pastry Shop

Pastry Chef Mindy Gohr attended Le Cordon Bleu Chicago where she mastered classic techniques and recipes and earned a degree...MORE.

Mauro Gomez

A native of Argentina, Chef Gomez began his training at the tender age of 12, working in the kitchen at his family's restaurant trained...MORE.

Cameron Grant
Osteria Langhe

Cameron Grant has striven for the last 15 years to excel in creating food and managing kitchens, starting with his University cafeteria...MORE.

Sarah Grueneberg

Since her childhood cooking with her grandparents on their ranch in Victoria, Texas, Sarah Grueneberg knew she was destined to work...MORE.

Dennis Gutierrez

Dennis Gutierrez currently serves as Chef De Cuisine at River North’s casual neighborhood restaurant and bar, Kinmont. His first experience... MORE

Carla Hall
Co-host of ABC's The Chew, Restaurateur, Author, and Chef

Carla Hall is a co-host of ABC’s popular lifestyle series “The Chew,” seated alongside restaurateurs and “Iron Chef America” stars Mario Batali... MORE

Jason Hammel
Lula Cafe

Jason Hammel, along with his wife Amalea Tshilds, is the chef and owner of Chicago’s, Lula Café in Logan Square. Known for vibrant flavors... MORE

Cedric Harden
III Forks Steakhouse

Growing up in a family of deep Southern roots Chef Cedric Harden's passion for food sparked at a very early age. When Chef Harden was....MORE

Jim Heflin
Hopsmith Tavern

Jim Heflin attended the University of Illinois at Champagne/Urbana as well as the Cooking and Hospitality Institute of Chicago. Since then...MORE.

Perry Hendrix

Perry Hendrix’s penchant for fresh local ingredients and calm demeanor make him perfectly suited for avec and Blackbird. Although Hendrix is at home in the kitchen...MORE.

Nate Henssler
Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab

Interestingly enough, Nate credits PBS and a lack of alternative programming for sparking his interest in cooking. "Growing up in rural...MORE.

Kevin Hickey
The Duck Inn

Chef Kevin Hickey joined the Rockit Ranch Productions team in 2013 as the new Chef/Partner of Bottlefork and The Duck Inn as well as...MORE.

Wilfrid Hocquet

With over 15 years of international experience in Paris, New York, Monaco, and Saint Marie, Wilfrid Hocquet joins FIG & OLIVE as Executive Chef. French born...MORE.

John Hogan
River Roast

Chef John Hogan is a fixture in the Chicago culinary community. He started his career at four-star Everest, Kikki’s Bistro and the... MORE

Luke Holden
Luke's Lobster

Luke was born and raised in Cape Elizabeth, a small town on the coast of Maine. He spent his sunny summers lobstering in his hand-made skiff... MORE

Sandra Holl
Floriole Cafe & Bakery

Sandra Holl graduated from the University of Colorado with a BA in French but decided to go to culinary school after tiring of working...MORE.

Trevor Hoyte

Executive Chef Trevor Hoyte, trained in the style of Classical French Cuisine with a modern contemporary approach, as he marries those... MORE

Stephanie Izard
Girl & the Goat / Little Goat Diner / Duck Duck Goat

Stephanie Izard was born in Chicago, Illinois. She grew up in Stamford, Connecticut, and attended the University of Michigan followed... MORE.

Paul Katz
Old Town Pour House

As the corporate executive chef for Bottleneck Management, Paul Katz oversees the culinary programs at all restaurant properties... MORE.

Jon Keeley
Gemini Bistro

Executive Chef Jon Keeley brings a breath of fresh air into Gemini Restaurant Group. With a career spanning multiple styles of cuisine... MORE.

Matthew Kerney
Longman & Eagle

A native of Plainfield, Kerney began working at restaurants as a busboy, quickly working his way into the kitchen. In Chicago, he got... MORE.

Brian Key
Hugo's Frog Bar & Fish House Chicago

A Chicagoland native, Key started working in restaurants at the age of 13, washing dishes and working the fry station at a Chinese restaurant... MORE.

Jeremy Kiens

Chef Jeremy Kiens was born and raised in Washington State, an area renowned for fresh seafood, an abundance of market fresh produce, and... MORE.

Bill Kim

Award-winning Chef Bill Kim was born in Seoul, Korea and immigrated to the United States at age 7. His first formal kitchen duty – roasting... MORE.

Shaun King
The Dawson

Shaun King was named executive chef of The Dawson in late 20214. With a resume encompassing modern American, French and Japanese... MORE.

Josh Kulp
Honey Butter Fried Chicken / Sunday Dinner Club

In fall 2013, after eight years of running a highly successful underground Chicago supper club, Josh Kulp and Co-Chef/Managing Partner Christine... MORE.

Ed Lee
Chung Jung One Gochujang Sauce

Chef Edward Lee is the chef/owner of 610 Magnolia, The Wine Studio & MilkWood in Louisville, KY and the culinary director for Succotash in Maryland. He has received multiple finalist nominations for the James Beard Foundation Awards...MORE.

Dylan Lipe
Blackwood BBQ

Born and raised in Du Quoin, Ill., Dylan Lipe has always been inspired by the personal connection food can create with otherwise complete... MORE.

Aaron Lirette

A Chicago native, Aaron is responsible for developing GreenRiver's menu with new twists on simple, comforting American dishes, as well... MORE.

Francisco Lopez
New Rebozo

Francisco Lopez, known as Chef Paco is the Chef/Owner of one of The Best Authentic Mexican Restaurants in Oak Park and Chicago land... MORE.


Millennium Park   |   Sept 26 - 30