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Chicago Gourmet - bio: Luis Avila
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Luis Avila

Midtown Kitchen & Bar

Luis grew up on the Gulf Coast in Veracruz, Mexico, surrounded by a culture rich in tradition. At a young age, Luis began doing multiple jobs in the kitchen of his Grandfather’s authentic cocina. This gave Luis a little taste of the restaurant industry, which was all he needed to realize that he truly wanted to pursue a culinary career.


In 1992, hungry for bigger challenges and promises of a bright future, Luis came to the United States where he made Chicago his home. Shortly thereafter, Luis began started training under the tutelage of celebrity Chef Rick Bayless at the famed Frontera Grill where he learned all aspects of Latin cuisine. Driven by his passion for cooking along with a steadfast work ethic, Luis moved his way up through the ranks and found himself educating the slew of young professionals joining the ever-expanding Bayless team.


Now proud to call Restaurants-America home, Luis has spent 19 years as a key employee, developing many up and coming talents through the company’s various concepts. He is now the creative Executive Chef at Midtown Kitchen + Bar in Chicago where he has been able to make the menu his own by introducing a contemporary take on American cuisine with a Spanish twist. When Luis is not cooking or developing imaginative and inspired menus, he is a full time family man with three children.


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