StarChefs Rising Star Gala Honors Miami's Best Wednesday 4/13

Star Chefs Miami Rising Stars Gala

StarChefs, the restaurant industry trends magazine, announces its 2016 South Florida Rising Stars Awards Gala on Wednesday April 13th, honoring up-and-coming chefs and hospitality professionals, who represent the vanguard of the contemporary American dining scene. From the Keys to Jupiter, the StarChefs team visited more than 100 chefs, pastry chefs, bartenders, sommeliers, restaurateurs, and artisans.

And MIAbites readers can score General Admission tickets at a 10% discount by following this link and using RSBLOG as code. And youcan enter to WIN two tickets by visiting MIAbites on Instagram and LIKING and COMMENTING on the StarChef post. 

“Wynwood and the Biscayne Corridor have supplanted South Beach as food destinations—even Coral Gables and Downtown have emerging scenes,” said Antoinette Bruno, CEO and Editor-in-Chief of StarChefs. “It’s a sure sign that locals, instead of tourists, are driving restaurant business, and they’re making it possible for young chefs to build successful, community-oriented businesses.”

“There’s no defining cuisine at the top of the market,” said Will Blunt, managing editor of StarChefs. “Whether it’s traditional Vietnamese or high-end and conceptual, the best food in South Florida is personal. It’s not trendy or derivative—and it has attitude.”

The winners will be honored at the StarChefs Rising Stars Gala on Wednesday, April 13 at Marlins Park, beginning with an awards ceremony at 6:30pm and followed by a tasting gala from 7:15 pm to 9:30 pm. Guests will experience 20 of South Florida’s most exciting restaurants with beverage pairings and cocktails by the winning sommeliers and bartenders, in one location for one night only.

The 2016 StarChefs South Florida Rising Stars Award Winners are:


Alex Chang - The Vagabond Restaurant 
Featured dish: Sweet Bread Milanese, Country Ham, Swiss Cheese Foam, and Mustard

Jimmy Everett - Valentino Cucina Italiana 
Featured dish: Cauliflower Panna Cotta, White Chocolate, Caviar, and Micro Chives

Brad Kilgore - Alter  
Featured dish: Blue Crab Shumai, Thai Green Curry, Culantro, Kumquat, and Rice Crisps

Diego Oka - La Mar at The Mandarin Oriental
Featured dish: Beet-Potato Causa, King Crab, Huancaina, and Salmon Roe

Niven Patel-  Formerly Michael's Genuine  
Featured dish: Jaggery Bacon, Achar-spiced Carrots, Mung Beans, Brown Basmati, and Yogurt

Phuket Thongsodchareondee -Cake Thai Kitchen  
Featured dish: Fried Yellowtail and Choo Chee Curry

Cesar Zapata -The Federal 
Featured dish: Banh Can, Ground Pork, Shrimp, Chinese Sausage, Chiles, and Nouc Mam

Hotel Chef

Rick Mace- Cafe Boulud at the Brazilian Court Hotel
Featured dish: Assortment of Charcuterie featuring Chicken Liver Mousse

Community Chef

William Crandall- Izzy's Fish and Oyster
Featured dish: Hot Lobster Roll and Lobster Butter Bernaise

Pastry Chefs
Presented by KitchenAid

Sylvain Bortolini-  Faena Hotel Miami Beach  
Featured dish: Chambord-Almond Jocund, Raspberry Mousse, and Sablé

Megan Pidgeon -Glazed Donuts  
Featured dish: Key Lime Pie Donut


Rauf Khoffner- Khoffner Brewery 
Featured beers: Riot Blood Irish Red Lager and Cream Head Cream Ale

Steve Santana - Taquiza  
Featured dish: Totopos and Guacamole

Zak Stern- Zak the Baker  
Featured bread: Country Sourdough

Brandon Wells -Wells Coffee Co.                                                                                               Featured coffee: Brazil Cerrado Mineiro

Presented by House of Angostura

Gui Jaroschy - The Broken Shaker
Featured drink: Tequila, Mezcal, Shishito Pepper Vinegar, Lime, Morita Chile Syrup, and Cucumber

Christian Rolon - Regent Cocktail Club
Featured drink: Il Viaggiatore: Fernet Branca, Cognac, Vemouth, Dry Curaçao, Mole Bitters, and Orange Swath

Presented by Wines from Spain

Jeremy Broto-Mur -Cafe Boulud 
Pairings with winners’ dishes

Daniel Toral - 50 Eggs 
Pairings with winners’ dishes

Presented by Edward Don

José Mendín, Sergio Navarro and Andreas Schreiner -Pubbelly Restaurant Group   
Featured dish: Short Rib Gyoza, Black Truffle, White Corn Soy, Sorel, and Parmesan
                                                                                                                                                                     Concept                                                                                                                                             Presented by Kikkoman

Jeff Latulippe - DIRT  
Featured dish: Beet and Goat Cheese Toast

Host Chef
Vince Navarrete - Levy Restaurants                                                                                         Featured dish: VIP Reception Hors D’oeuvres featuring Northern Divine Caviar

Additional awards, the Art of Presentation Award, presented by Steelite International, and the Mentor Award, presented by Vitamix, will be announced at the Gala.

General Admission is $95.00 per person. VIP tickets are $125.00 which includes a private VIP reception with a Cava tasting and Northern Divine Caviar, beginning at 5:45 p.m. Tickets can be purchased on the StarChefs website at A portion of the ticket sales will be donated to Feeding South Florida, a nonprofit food bank that distributes more than 40 million pounds of food per year. More than 98 percent of all donations are put back into the community. Learn more at

***And for the 10% off GA go to this link and use code RSBLOG to order your tickets.  See you at the stadium!