Years of Participation
Chris was a semifinalist for the James Beard Award for Outstanding Chef in 2019 and was named Robb Report‘s Chef of the Year the same year. Chris’ first cookbook, Cook Like a Local: Flavors that Will Change the Way You Cook—and See the World, was published by Clarkson Potter in September 2019 and was nominated for a 2020 James Beard Foundation Book Award. In 2023, Chris launched a TV show Eat Like a Local on Houston’s KPRC-TV, where he tells the stories of Houston’s rich and diverse food and beverage scene. He also hosts an onstage conversation series, Table to Stage, with the biggest names in food and beverage.
Chris began his fine dining career at Brennan’s of Houston, where he spent seven years in the kitchen and then ran the wine program for two. He left Brennan’s in 2006 to open Catalan Food & Wine, which was named one of Esquire’s Best New Restaurants in America that same year.
Chris’ foundation Southern Smoke has distributed more than $10.9 million directly to people in the food and beverage industry in need via the Emergency Relief Fund.