Gustavo Rios named Executive Chef of Solbar at Solage, Auberge Resorts Collection - Insights
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Gustavo Rios named Executive Chef of Solbar at Solage, Auberge Resorts Collection

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Gustavo-Rios
Gustavo Rios

Framed by the soft ridges of the nearby mountains and sprawling Napa Valley vineyards, Solbar at Solage, Auberge Resorts Collection is thrilled to announce the appointment of Gustavo Rios as executive chef. 

Rios has over 20 years of experience working at luxury properties and some of the best restaurants in the U.S., including a previous stint of seven years at Solbar where he mastered his culinary skills. During his previous tenure at Solbar, he played an integral role in achieving the Michelin star award with the team that successfully launched the restaurant and inspired top selling dishes that became menu mainstays making the restaurant one of the most sought-after dining destinations in the region. In his new role, Rios will draw on his deep, longstanding relationships with top Napa Valley farmers and winemakers to further elevate the food and beverage program as well as oversee all culinary operations on property including Solbar restaurant, the heart of this Calistoga resort and a neighborhood hot spot.

“We are delighted to welcome Chef Rios back to Solage to lead the culinary team and continue his legacy as one of the most respected chefs in the region,” said Donald Stamets, General Manager, Solage, Auberge Resorts Collection. “With his proven track record of success at Solbar and bringing restaurants to the forefront of the dining scene here in Napa Valley coupled with his warm spirit, contagious energy and creativity, Chef Rios was the perfect candidate for this position and it has been a joyful homecoming for him and the resort.”

Set within Calistoga’s lush landscape, the alluring dining venue also known as “Calistoga’s living room” is an inviting culinary destination where locals and travelers return to enjoy the vibrant atmosphere and sophisticated luxury while indulging on soul-filling Napa cuisine in a lively indoor-outdoor space. In 2010, the restaurant was awarded its first one-Michelin star rating and received this coveted award for seven consecutive years while Chef Rios was on the team. During his time at Solbar, Rios advanced from chef de partie to executive sous chef and chef de cuisine.

Prior to his return to Solbar, Rios joined forces with Solbar veteran, Chef Brandon Sharp to create the concept for Calistoga-based French bistro, Evangeline where he also served as the executive chef and helped open the restaurant in 2015. He also held culinary leadership roles at Michelin star-rated, Bouchon Bistro in Yountville, AAA Five Diamond property, The Inn at Little Washington in Virginia and at the award-winning Peninsula Beverly Hills.

“Solbar is home for me, and when this opportunity presented itself, it was an easy decision to return and further elevate the experience as one of the very best,” said Rios. “It is an honor to work with such an incredible team of culinary experts and I am excited to get back into the kitchen that taught me so much about creating thoughtful dishes that bring guests and neighbors together at our table.”

Inspired by California cuisine and Napa Valley ingredients, Rios is re-creating comfort with ever changing menus featuring seasonal dishes that celebrate bold flavors through elevated comfort cuisine that embraces the liveliness of Solage. Utilizing both the sophisticated yet cozy indoor dining room and warm outdoor terrace that features a 20-foot fire pit and views of the landmark pool, Rios will enhance the guest experience through soulful cuisine that will incorporate his Latin background, innovative methods that showcase his experience in European cooking, along with exceptional guest service. Guests will also have the option of delighting in prix-fixe tasting menus that include wine pairings, showcasing some of the top local and world-renowned wineries including Chateau Montelena, Eisele Vineyard & Knights Bridge. For intimate and bespoke dining experiences, the Atrium, a private glass-walled dining space within Solbar will be available for private dinners and events for small groups, which will also include a thoughtful menu written by Chef Rios.

When he is not at Solage, Rios enjoys spending time with his wife and daughter as well as trying new cuisines and local restaurants.

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