Over 40 Wineries will attend the first Rioja Wine and Tapas Festival in Chicago. Attendees of the festival will get a chance to meet with the winemakers and the best importers representing Spain's most prominent wine region. Combined with more than 30 chefs from around the country - this is a show-stopping showcase for people who love for Spanish culture. Check out the list below.


Bodegas AGE | Muriel | Viña Eguia | Fernandez de Pierola | Carlos Serres | Vivanco | Bodegas Valdemar | Ramón Bilbao | Bodega Classica | Bodega Maetierra Dominum | Muga | Marqués de Cáceres | Bodegas Riojanas | Franco Espanolas | Campo Viejo | Ysios | Marqués de Vargas | Montecillo | Ontañón | Soto de Torres | Valenciso | Martinez CortaMarqués de Carrión | Bodegas Basagoiti | Marqués de Riscal | Bodegas Palacio | Beronia | Casa Primicia Finca Valpiedr | Familia Martinez Bujanda | Raquel Saenz Sacristan | Rug Vino | Castillo de Cuzcurrita | El Coto | LANBaron de Ley | Faustino | Bodegas Bilbainas | Bodegas Tarón

We expect over 30+ chefs will be in the house cooking at the first Rioja Wine and Tapas Festival in Chicago over the James Beard Awards weekend. Attendees of the festival will get a chance to meet and eat some of the best bites showcasing their love for Spanish cuisine and tapas. The list below will continue to grow with information on each of the participating chefs.

Francis Derby - NYC - The Cannibal

"Its always good to spend some time cooking some Spanish inspired food. Brings me back to my time spent in San Sebastián as a young cook.” Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Tertulia | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Mugaritz

Michael  Sullivan - TN - COCHON 555 (Formerly of Blackberry Farm)

"Every time I get invited to do an event involving things I care deeply about, such as morcilla, iberico, paella, and whole animal presentations, I can't hesitate. Better yet, I am able to support the James Beard Foundation while celebrating Spain's most prominent region with some of the best chefs in the country.” Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Tertulia | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Arzak

Michael Santoro - NYC - Andaz 5th Avenue

"Spanish food is some of my favorite food of all time. The flavors are bold, the techniques are exciting, and the country is beautiful. I'm proud to bring my experience of cooking and living in San Sebastián to this event.” Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Tertulia | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Mugaritz

Anthony Sasso - NYC - Casa Mono y Bar Jamon 

"I can't think of a better event to be a part of than one that will be showcasing all that Spain has to offer in one of the most incredible event spaces in New York. I'm especially looking forward to sharing this experience with some impeccable wine producers, chef friends that I respect enormously, and others that I'll get the chance to meet for the first time, all over a healthy amount of Jamon, Rioja wine, and tapas. "The Rioja event is the perfect vehicle to showcase all that Spains most influential wine region has to offer with an amazing culinary lineup and an enthusiastic following that gets better every year." Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Palo Santo & Casa Galicia | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Can Flores

DANIEL OLIVELLA - Austin - Barlata Tapas & Bar

"I am very eager to be part of an event that spot lights Spain's culture, gastronomy, cuisine and wines. It is an honor to collaborate with fellow spanish chefs in a common vision to promote the flavors of Spain in America." Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Barlata | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Susquet D' Admirall

DESPAÑA - Fine Foods From Spain & Chorizo Manufacturers

"Despaña is excited to support this special event where our chef friends, collaborators and colleagues continue to be inspired by ingredients and flavors from Spain. A perfect match will be made with the fantastic pairings of the wines of Rioja, so what more could we ask for?"

Katie Button - NC - Cúrate

"As the chef of a Spanish restaurant in Asheville, NC, I am excited to get together with chefs from all over the country to participate in an event highlighting Spanish cuisine and the wines of Rioja, and to demonstrate that Spain and Rioja are well represented in the USA...including Asheville, NC." Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Jaleo | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Tickets

David Cordua - TX - Américas

"Honored to be representing Houston and its diversity here. Looks like a great time!" Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Bazaar | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Mugaritz

Tim Dacey - FL - Capa at Four Seasons Orlando

"It's an honor to participate in this festival with so many renowned chefs, all with a focus on Spanish cuisine & Rioja wine. It's always inspiring to be surrounded by the talent of so many chefs from around the country, and I hope to bring some inspiration back to Capa, our Spanish influenced steakhouse at Four Seasons Resort Orlando." Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Casa Mono | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Biko

Carlos Gaytan - IL - Mexique

"I love tapas, they are my favorite food group" Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: cafe iberico | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: mugratiz

Tim Graham - IL - Travelle

“It is so much fun to be cooking Spanish inspired food in Chicago. To have it tied to Rioja wine is a double bonus. If it’s wine, and it’s red, I’m down! Not to mention slamming it with delicious roasted beasties.” Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Casa Mono – those guys kill it daily | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Tickets in Barcelona

Kurt Guzowski and Thomas Rice - IL - TÊTE Charcuterie

"We are huge fans of Cochon and James Beard Foundation so the opportunity too become a part of this event in the first year of James Beard Foundation in Chicago is a great honor for us." Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: salero | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: have yet to find

Adam Halberg - CT - Barcelona Wine Bar & Restaurant

"At Barcelona Wine Bar and Restaurants, we serve small plates of fresh, locally sourced and intensely flavored food, based in Spanish tradition. We are also one of the largest purchasers of Spanish wines in the US, and feature over 40 Riojas, both classic and modern, on our wine list. So we are delighted to participate in a festival that celebrates what we prepare, serve and share with our guests on a daily basis. It is an honor to join other chefs for the finale of Rioja Week and to support culinary scholarships at the James Beard Foundation." Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Barcelona Wine Bar! Then Tertulia, NYC | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Casa Montana, Valencia

Joe Heppe - IL - Oak & Char

"When I was asked to participate in the Rioja Wine and Tapas Festival during the first chicago James Beard Gala Weekend, I was like 'yea'..but really I was like 'hell ya!'" Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Mercat a la Planxa | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Tickets

Rob Levitt - IL - The Butcher & Larder

"Nobody knows how to eat better than the Spanish, and, of all the world wide variations, Morcilla is my favorite blood sausage. Put it all under one one roof with some of the best wines in the world and that's my kind of party!" Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Vera | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: The little, nameless bar in Malaga with all the hams hanging over the bar and the croquettes cooked in the hearth

John Manion - IL - La Sirena Clandestina

Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Vera | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Tancat, Buenos Aires

Sarah McDonnell - IL - Trellis

"Honored to be asked to participate in Rioja Wine & Tapas Festival. Looking forward to a day immersed in the food, wine and culture of Spain right here in Chicago." Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: cafe iberico | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: n/a

Cory Morris - IL - Rural Society

"Spanish cuisine is full of flavor and history. I've always loved how endless the flavor combinations are, and how Spanish cuisine has influenced so many cultures. The Rural Society team is excited to share a traditional and authentic Spanish dish with an Argentine twist, and pair it with some tasty libations." Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Toro | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: El Fuego Negro (San Sebastian, Spain)

Greg O'Neill - IL - Pastoral Artisan

"If I had to live on one cuisine alone based on diversity, flavor and creativity, it would be the food of Spain.  Plus, Spanish artisan cheese, olives and jamon are an addiction!"  Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Salero | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Estadio 

Jeff Parkin - Bar Pastoral

"I'm honored and excited to participate in this festival with such talented chefs and to work with such great products." Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Salero | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: N/A

Nathan Sears - IL - The Radler

"Cooking the most succulent pigs to serve with traditional paella just makes sense to me, especially when chefs come together to make it a great night for everyone involved!" Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: jaleo | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: arzak

Sarah Simmons - NY - Birds & Bubbles

Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Huertas | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Tondeluna

Joshua Whigham - DC

"I am more than excited to share my experience of Spanish cuisine through this festival. Spanish food is rooted tradition with a playful edge." Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: Jaleo | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: Etxebarri

Rachel Dow – IL - The Betty

"I am very excited to showcase the depth of Chicago's culinary talent under the umbrella of such a well respected foundation. We have such a supportive and awesome culinary community in this city. To be the host city for this collaborative event is right in line with our midwestern hospitality and a chance to show the rest of the country how we do. It also helps that we are great at eating and drinking." Favorite Spanish Restaurant in USA: avec | Favorite Spanish Restaurant: elBulli RIP