StarChefs Announces 2021 Miami Rising Stars

StarChefs, the national restaurant industry magazine known for annually recognizing the top culinary talent nationwide, announces the 2021 Miami Rising Stars and launches Rising Stars Restaurant Week, a two-week campaign (beginning March 17) that spotlights the Rising Stars and incentivizes guests to enjoy the winners’ signature dishes and beverages. The 2021 class includes 20 Rising Stars, recognized by StarChefs for their culinary strength, in addition to their charitable contributions to Miami and ability to navigate, lead, and inspire during one of the industry’s most challenging times.

Since 1995, StarChefs has supported the restaurant industry by offering resources and a close-knit network for restaurant professionals. The StarChefs’ Rising Stars program began in 2003 to honor up-and-coming chefs and hospitality professionals who represent the vanguard of contemporary American dining nationwide.

Nominations for StarChefs’ Rising Stars come from Rising Stars alumni, the StarChefs editorial team, local epicurean media, and the general public. Four times a year, the StarChefs team meets with more than 100 nominees in a featured city. After months of tastings and interviews with chefs, pastry chefs, bartenders, sommeliers, and artisans, StarChefs selects a group of Rising Stars Award Winners. The 2021 Miami Rising Stars will be the 71st class of Rising Stars and the fourth from South Florida.

The StarChefs Rising Stars Restaurant Week is a two-week campaign that spotlights each of the 2021 Miami Rising Stars. Guests can celebrate the StarChefs Rising Stars by experiencing the signature dishes, wine pairings, cocktails, and baked goods that wowed the StarChefs team.

When guests post a Rising Stars’ dish or drink on Instagram during Rising Stars Restaurant Week, they will be automatically entered to win either a $100 gift card to that Rising Stars establishment. To be entered to win the $100 gift card, guests must tag @​StarChefs​ and #StarChefsRisingStars on an Instagram story or in-feed post.

The StarChefs Miami Rising Stars Restaurant Week runs from March 17 to 31. For more information, visit ​

2021 StarChefs Miami Rising Stars Award Winners:

Recognizes chefs whose leadership is boldly advancing the restaurant industry
Presented by S.Pellegrino

  • Nando & Valerie Chang | Itamae

Recognizes professionals who are deeply connected to the local culinary community, dedicate their
time to community outreach, and are ultimately a catalyst for involving members of the culinary
community in important initiatives. Presented by Kikkoman USA.

  • Jamila Ross & Akino West | Rosie’s Miami

Celebrates a creative, well-executed, growing restaurant concept

  • Monica “Mika” Leon | Caja Caliente


  • Michael Beltran | Ariete Hospitality Group
  • Luciana Giangrandi & Alex Meyer | Boia De
  • Tristen Epps | Red Rooster Overtown
  • Jon Nguyen | Tran An
  • Pablo Zitzmann | Zitz Sum

Presented by Butter of Europe

  • Samira Saade | Bachour



  • Jason & Melanie Schoendorfer | Babe’s Meat & CounterBaker
  • Matteson Koche | El BagelRoaster
  • Sergio Boppel | Great Circle Coffee

Presented by Wines from Spain

  • J.C. Santana | The Bastion Collection

Presented by Campari

  • Will Thompson | Jaguar Sun

Presented by Montague

  • Randy Alonso & Chris Hudnall | Lost Boy Dry Goods


  • Michael Schwartz | The Genuine Hospitality Group

For every signature Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae sold during the Rising Stars Restaurant Week,
StarChefs will donate $1 to local nonprofit Feeding South Florida. Presented by TCHO Chocolate.

  • Alissa & Jeremy Frice | Frice Cream

Rising Stars Supporters:
S.Pellegrino, True Aussie Lamb, Vnlla Extract Co., Symrise, Butter of Europe, TCHO Chocolate, Niman
Ranch, Kikkoman USA, Wines from Spain, Fresh Origins, Lone Mountain Wagyu, Montague,
Centerline by Hobart, Campari, Buffalo Trace

Local Partners:
Mamey Miami, THesis Hotel, Feeding South Florida