Dress for Success
Chic downtown San Antonio restaurant hosts showcase for women chefs
Update: An earlier version of this story listed the date of the dinner as July 23. The dinner actually takes place on July 13.
Ask male chefs about their inspiration, and you’ll hear a common refrain — their moms, grandmothers, and aunts inspired their love of cooking. It’s a peculiar contradiction. While female personalities like Molly Baz and Emily Kim tend to dominate the home cooking space, restaurant kitchens are still dominated by males.
According to research from job site Zippia, only 20 percent of head chefs at American restaurants identify as women. The cultural implication is clear — serious cooking is the domain of men, regardless of the actual gender breakdown of culinary school classes.
Downtown’s Landrace is already committed to disrupting that disparity with a woman-led leadership team, including executive sous chef Michelle Velez to general manager Tamara Quilliam.
The July 13 edition of its A Night at the Chef’s Table dinner series will further drive the point home with Velez hosting three of San Antonio’s most accomplished woman chefs for a four-course feast and welcome cocktail reception.
Executive chef Steve McHugh will take a backseat as Velez welcomes television personality and cookbook author Diana Barrios Treviño, the proprietor of San Antonio’s Los Barrios restaurant group. Pastry phenoms Alba Ayala and Jessica Philpot of Extra Fine will join to ensure a sweet ending.
The pairings will keep with the theme by focusing on selections from women-led brands. The presentation is no mere stunt. A recent winner of Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence, Landrace has built a wide-ranging list that showcases under-represented BIPOC and women producers.
Tickets to the one-night-only event are available for $150 online. A quarter of the proceeds will benefit the empowerment nonprofit Dress for Success.