Chef Spotlight Stage Schedule
12:30pm Greg Lipman – Piastra
1pm Comedian Kurt Green performs
1:30pm Jaime Vicente – Taqueria Tsunami, Stockyard Bugers and Bones and Forno Vero
2pm Young Voices United performs
2:30pm Andre Gomez – Porch Light Latin Kitchen
3pm Join in for a community square dance
4pm Hector Santiago – El Super Pan
Performances by Dejavu in between cooking segments.
Hosted by Chef Raul Thomas!
Born and raised on the beautiful island of Puerto Rico, Andre brings his pan Latin flavors and hospitality to the table every day. After finishing High school, he moved stateside to pursue his hospitality and yet to be found culinary dreams. He was able to attain bachelors in Hospitality Administration from Lynn University and a Bachelors in Culinary Management from the Art Institute of Ft Lauderdale. After meeting his wife Ashley, they moved to Smyrna as part of her job relocation. He started working at Canoe with Chris Hall and later moved on to work at Nava for the Buck head Life Restaurant Group. HIs next stop working as Executive Chef for the acclaimed Kevin Rathbun, which he looks up as mentor, Andre was able to gain the experience that fortified his lifelong dream of being a business owner. in November 2015 he opened his “dream job” Porch Light Latin Kitchen.
Andre lives with his wife Ashley and 3 children Andre Ryan, Alexander and Addison in Smyrna.
Originally from Boston, Chef Greg Lipman learned about food at a young age when he first learned the phrase, “Food is love”. Greg started to learn to cook from his mother, Betty, and took culinary classes in high school. After training at New England Culinary Institute in Montpelier, Vermont, he worked in various restaurants in the Boston area where he developed his specialty of Italian Cuisine. Around age thirty, he trained with a classically trained French chef on a small yacht while sailing over a third of the way around the world. Shortly after the trip, Chef Greg moved to Atlanta and began working at Maxim Prime at the Glenn Hotel in downtown Atlanta. He then worked as the Chef at Alon’s Bakery and Market as well as other restaurants before finding the location which became Piastra.
Chef Hector Santiago was born in Puerto Rico. Nearly 25 years ago, he took his first culinary job cooking in the San Juan kitchen of his mentor, Chef Giovanna Huyke. Under her advisement, Chef Santiago attended the Culinary Institute of America in New York. Following graduation, he trained in the kitchens of the Greenbrier Hotel in West Virginia, the Manhattan Ocean Club, Stony Hill Inn in New Jersey, and Heartland Brewery.
Fast forward to 2001, when he moved to Atlanta and opened his restaurant Pura Vida—a highly regarded Latino tapas restaurant. For over a decade, Chef Santiago traveled, explored and cooked, bringing the authentic flavors and ingredients of his beloved Latino America to Pura Vida. He researched and expanded his technique with stints in the kitchens of renowned international chefs, including José Andrés, Wylie Dufresne (WD~50) and Andoni Luis Aduriz. As Chef-Owner of Pura Vida, Santiago was a three-time, James Beard Foundation “Best Chef of the Southeast” Semifinalist, and has also been named as Star Chef’s Rising Star of Atlanta in 2011 and had a spot on Bravo’s Emmy-winning show, “Top Chef Las Vegas” (Season 6). In 2015, Santiago and his pupils, Chefs Pedro Matos and Luis Guevara, officially opened El Super Pan at Ponce City Market, which has received accolades in VOGUE, Travel + Leisure, Eater, The Local Palate, CNN, Thrillist, USA Today, Travel Channel, Food Network, Zagat, Food & Wine, and many more. In 2018, he opened a second El Super Pan location at The Battery Atlanta.
El Super Pan is a classic Latin kitchen- highlighting all the bold and rich flavors of Cocina Criolla- a beautiful melody of Caribbean Indigenous food, Spanish and African cuisine. Our inventive takes on tropical cocktails lead our guests through time in the Caribbean- highlighting rum flavors from both Puerto Rico and Cuba.
Born and raised in Puerto Rico, Chef Jaime Vicente has over a decade and a half of culinary expertise, stemming from his passion for cooking that began at an early age. He became the Regional Training Chef for Brinker International’s Macaroni Grill – initially working under the guidance of Chef Scott Kinsey. He graduated from culinary school, La Gordon Bleu, obtaining a Culinary Arts Degree, while working at Morimoto’s in Orlando.
In 2017, Chef Jaime relocated to Atlanta to become the Executive Chef for Fork U Concepts, a company created and owned by his former Chef, Kinsey, and wife, Alexis Kinsey.
As Executive Chef, Jaime oversees new menu item roll-outs and execution for all brands (10+ locations) of Fork U Concepts, including Taqueria Tsunami, Stockyard Burgers & Bones and Forno Vero Neapolitan Eatery & Drinkery. His international experience, passion and keen eye for perfection leads the brands forward as they continue to expand in new markets.