Partner and Chef, The Stanton Social and Beauty & Essex
Chef Chris Santos has over twenty years of experience honing his culinary craft as an Executive Chef in New York City's hottest restaurants. From the cult classic Wyanoka, which Sam Sifton described as "sexyand outrageously flavorful," to the famed Time Caf and award-wining Latin restaurant, Suba, Santos' distinctive career has been synonymous with unparalleled success.
In 2005, Chef Chris Santos introduced the world to his unique brand of communal dining with his debut restaurant, The Stanton Social. Inspired by Santos' own world travels, The Stanton Social's multi-cultural menu, designed for sharing, made for experiential dining with cuisine as delicious as it was entertaining. The New York Times praised his innovative talent in which he tweaks traditional classics with an "infectious playfulness." In 2007, he was named Star Chefs Rising Star Chef and began developing a sister-restaurant to his first smash hit.
In December of 2010, Chris welcomed Beauty & Essex to the Lower East Side. With an operational pawnshop entrance, the breathtaking design transforms the turn-of-the-century townhouse into a seductive, bi-level restaurant and lounge with a twenty-foot skylight and dramatic crystal chandeliers. The bigger space commands a larger, slightly more sophisticated, menu including bountiful Raw Bar offerings, creative twists on classics such as "Jewels on Toast," Tomato Tartare, Duck Confit Chilaquiles and a selection of Dry Aged Prime Meats anchored by the show-stopping Bone-in Ribeye and the award winning Beauty & Essex Lamb Burger. Since opening, Beauty & Essex was named OpenTable's Hottest Restaurant in America in both 2012 and 2013, and both The Stanton Social and Beauty & Essex were recently included in a poll of the country's Top 100 Restaurants based on feedback from 5 million users.
Throughout his career, Santos has appeared as guest chef on NBC's Today Show, CBS's Early Show, The Martha Stewart Show, and The Rachael Ray Show. Most famously, he is a resident judge on the Food Network's most popular hit series Chopped and recently became a City Harvest board member. Santos has served as a repeat Guest Chef at The White House and Camp David, and has been a brand ambassador for Jagermeister and Morningstar Farms.
2015 is gearing up to be the biggest year of Santos' already impressive career. Aside from his ongoing tenure as a judge on the Food Network's hit show "Chopped" and his exciting partnership with Chef'd, Santos has three ambitious new restaurant projects slated to open by Summer 2016, which will finally expand his unique brand to a West Coast audience in Los Angeles and Las Vegas, as well as bring a new concept to his home base of downtown NYC at 199 Bowery. His first personalized entry in a line of new and exciting sauces recently became available to consumers and he has begun work on his highly anticipated first cookbook.
Learn More About Chris Santos
If you've participated in the Festival before, what is your favorite SOBEWFF memory to date?
When they announced me as the co-winner at the Q. Afterwards we were walking down Collins Avenue with the trophy and everyone screaming, "The Champ is here!" to visit Josh Capon the Burger Bash Champion.
If you could cook with anyone in the world, who would it be?
Always my mom.
I never leave home without my: