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Visiting Santa Fe

2017 March Santa Fe Chef Martin Rios a James Beard Finalist

March 24, 2017: Santa Fe Chef Martin Rios is a finalist for the 2017 James Beard Awards in The Best Chef Southwest category. Chef Martin of Restaurant Martin is up against Steve McHugh of San Antonio’s Cured, Hugo Ortega of Houston’s Hugo’s, Steve Redzikowski of Denver’s Acorn, Bryce Gilmore of Austin’s Barley Swine, and Jianyun Ye of Houston’s Mala Sichuan Bistro. The James Beard Foundation announced the finalists on March 15.

“The judges have for this category alone, approximately 1,000 great chefs from which they can select only a very few,” said Chef Martin. “To be recognized by our peers in this way is a huge honor for our entire staff who work so hard every day to provide our guests the highest quality dining experience that they expect and deserve from a Santa Fe restaurant.”

Randy Randall, Executive Director for TOURISM Santa Fe, agreed and said, “Santa Fe is a small town, especially compared to the big cities where the other Southwest nominees come from, but we have numerous former James Beard nominees and winners and we are world-renowned for the highest culinary excellence. Chef Martin, who has been nominated eight times and is long overdue for a victory, is a shining star in our community and we salute his ongoing accomplishments.”

Restaurant Martin is the embodiment of a 20-year dream to create the perfect balance of refined and comfortable dining. Chef Martin and his wife Jennifer envisioned a certain ambiance where people from the community as well as Santa Fe’s many visitors could enjoy Chef’s award-winning progressive American cuisine.

Martin and Jennifer are long-time Santa Feans with a commitment to locality. Martin volunteers for Cooking with Kids and Jennifer is president of The Horse Shelter. This family-owned restaurant caters not only to visitors but to the Santa Fe community.

Chef Rios, a native of Guadalajara, grew up in Santa Fe and started in the restaurant business as a 17-year-old dishwasher. He eventually worked his way up to executive chef at several restaurants and hotels. He received his formal training at the Culinary Institute of America and supplemented that with experience and training in some of the world’s most honored restaurants and with well-known culinary masters.

The James Beard Awards 2017 winners will be announced on Monday, May 1 in Chicago.


Media Contacts:
Cynthia Delgado
Tel: 505 955 6212

Carlyn Topkin / Matt Sessions
Lou Hammond Group
Tel: 212 891 0214 | 212 891 0228
Email: |

Restaurant Contact:
Jennifer Rios
General Manager/Owner
Tel: 505 820 0919

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