Katie Button (Cúrate, Button & Co. Bagels) – Asheville, NC

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Katie Button is at the helm of two restaurants in Asheville, North Carolina – the lively and authentic Spanish experience at Cúrate, the nationally-acclaimed tapas restaurant, and Button & Co. Bagels, influenced by Katie’s upbringing in New Jersey.

Chef Katie took a winding road to open her restaurants in Asheville, first pursuing science degrees at Cornell and earning her master’s degree in biomedical engineering in Paris.

Realizing that a life in Science wasn’t for her, she changed course to the culinary field, starting as a server at one of Jose Andres’ restaurants in Washington DC, volunteering on her days off to work at his avante garde restautant minibar to help prep in their kitchen, since she didn’t have any professional cooking experience.

Being in the kitchen made her realize that it was the place she wanted to be most, so from there, she got a position in the kitchen at New York’s Jean-Georges in their pastry kitchen as an intern.

From there, she moved out LA to work at The Bazaar by José Andrés, and that following Summer, she landed a postion in the pastry kitchen at elBulli, Chef Ferran and Albert Adria’s legendary 3 michelin star restaurant in Spain.

It was there that she met her husband Felix, and together they moved to Asheville to open a restaurant with her parents, where they eventually opened Cúrate in 2011.

The classic Spanish tapas restaurant received instant attention and accolades, from mentions in The Wall Street Journal and the New York Times, and earning status as a nominee for the James Beard Foundation’s Rising Star Chef award in 2014, semi-finalist for Best Chefs in America in 2015 and a nominee for Best Chef Southeast 2018 and 2019.

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