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World Chef Exchange | Mexico City

Presented by Tourism Vancouver, Air Canada, The Westin Bayshore, and CACAO Vancouver

January 21
First seating 5:30pm
Second seating 8:30pm


We are going global again! We've reached out to our friends in the culinary community and have invited them to Vancouver. Five of the world's culinary best will be in our city for a series of delicious collaborations with some of our own city's top talent.

An small intimate setting faces off with cultural flair and exuberance in this exciting pairing of Latin American culinary influences. Join us in welcoming Mexico City's Jair Tellez, and Miami's Nidal Barake for this collaborative dining experience curated by Executive Chef Jefferson Alvarez and the team at Vancouver's newest Latin restaurant, Cacao.

Jair Tellez's craftsmanship and talent as a chef and restaurateur, together with Nidal Barake's credentials designing and delivering culinary experiences to the public guarantee an unforgettable dining experience.

The Vancouver World Chef Exchange is a project initiated and produced by Tourism Vancouver, and sponsored by Air Canada and the Westin Bayshore hotel. The exchange shares Vancouver's culinary story with the world, and brings the world's great restaurant cities closer together by sharing ideas, experiences and talents through collaborative dining experiences.


*All Inclusive - includes multi-course dinner, beverage pairings, tax, gratuity and ticketing fees.

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About Chef Jefferson Alvarez

Self taught chef, Jefferson Alvarez left his home country of Venezuela at age 16 for Ottawa, where he attended Le Cordon Bleu Ottawa Culinary Institute. His wanderlust and ambition shortly took him to Toronto to work at Centro under illustrious chefs David Lee and Mark Thuet.
Determined and hard working, chef Alvarez decidedly absorbed as much knowledge around Toronto and had experiences at Pangea, Adega and Scaramouche, Canoe under famed chef Anthony Walsh, Aquavit and Morimoto. Alvarez took his first Executive Chef role at Tomi-kro.

Chef Alvarez has now become synonymous with amazing creativity and culinary expression, creating unique dining experiences, full of imagination and passion. In 2013, Jefferson because Executive Chef at Gastown's Secret Location. Most recently, he launched his own restaurant, Cacao, in Vancouver's Kitsilano. Its kitchen represents a progressive and fresh Latin American menu, created with a sinuous, steady hand and a focus on high quality, regional ingredients.

About Chef Jair Tellez

Growing up in the border town of Tijuana, Jair Tellez was raised in a melting pot of combined American and Mexican influences and as a result he often struggled to identify with his cultural roots. In 1999 he opened Laja in Valle de Guadalupe, where he set out to invent a cultural and culinary identity that would be unique to his self.

Today, Laja is an international success armed with a healthy manifest of clientele who are more than happy to make the special journey and celebrate destination dining at its finest. Tellez attended he French Culinary Institute, which led to an apprenticeship at Daniel. He returned to open Merotoro in México City in 2008. Following his success, he opened Amaya in 2016 in the rising Colonia Juarez neighborhood.

Jair is not only a talented chef, but also a regular speaker and contributor for the most important food events and publications worldwide.

About Nidal Barake

Nidal is the co-founder and Director of Gluttonomy, an innovation agency that reinvents the future of food businesses, building and implementing conceptual and business strategies for cooks, restaurants and brands.

Nidal directs his passion for food and the culinary world in his blog and app Yo Culinario, where he shares his experiences around the world, and is a regular contributor for printed and online publications his sharing food and travel experiences. He keeps his more than 100k followers informed of his whereabouts and latest food wonders. He also combines his work and passion by participating in conferences around the globe, speaking about food innovation, technology and entrepreneurship.