Executive Chef Aaron Dreilinger brings a unique worldly flavor and presentation to his cuisine, combining flavors from years of travel in Southeast Asia, India, Australia, and elegant twists on American Slow Food. Originally a student of sustainable agriculture design, he later graduated from Johnson and Wales University, served with many of Miami’s top chefs. Chef Aaron creates a Michelin restaurant quality experience outside the confines of restaurant walls. With a strong focus on South-Florida’s rich resources and the growing farm-to-table movement, Aaron continues this tradition of pushing the limit in exciting ways in presentation and flavor. Highlights of Aaron’s career include Slow Food Snail of Approval, Sous Chef for Quattro Gastronomia in South Beach, four years with several Michelle Bernstein projects, director of nonprofit Earth Learning Foundation’s Community Food Works, Executive Chef of Chef David Catering and most recently the Corporate Executive Chef at Celebrity Cruises. On numerous occasions Chef Aaron has had the honor of hosting President and Mrs. Obama, as well as President Bill Clinton during their visits to Miami. He supports many charitable causes and organizations in our community, including The Miami Children’s Museum, UM Medical School, The Children’s Bereavement Center, and The Everglades Foundation. He presently sits on the Board of Slow Foods Miami. Aaron has taught classes at Aragon101 for the last four years.
Rafaella Sargi is simply passionate about food. She loves eating.She loves cooking and says: “I also love cleaning up the kitchen because it means I can start cooking all over again!” After spending 10 years working in creative copywriting and graphic design, Rafaella decided to change her career and pursue her passion. She studied Baking and Pastry at Le Cordon Bleu and now she’s able to channel her artistic talents into delicious and beautiful creations that satisfy her husband, their two sons, their circle of friends and now, you. Rafaella’s cuisine is based on herMediterranean background. She always uses fresh ingredients for simple, genuine and sunny recipes.
Chef Alexandra Golovac has been intrigued by the world of gastronomy since a young age. Food is her work and passion. Teaching culinary classes to children and adults brings her immense amount of joy. After graduating from the University of Miami in psychology Alexandra went off to Boston University for a Masters in Gastronomy Food Studies and her culinary degree. This educational experience offered her a a chance to work and cook with Chef Jacque Pepin and in James Beard Kitchens. Since graduating Alexandra has been dedicated to culinary education and nutrition, subsequently receiving her certification in Fitness Nutrition. After starting two business in the food industry she decided that culinary education was her passion and mission. Since then Chef Alexandra has devoted her career to teaching the incredible field of cooking, nutrition, and gastronomy.
Chef Pablo Zitzmann, a native of Bogota, Colombia, has spent more than a decade cooking at Miami's finest restaurants, including Nobu, Michelle Bernstein’s Sra. Martinez, and the Matador Room. As Sous Chef at the Edition, Zitzmann worked alongside acclaimed Michelin 3-star chef Jean Georges Vongerighten. Zitzmann is currently working on opening a new Asian-centered concept restaurant in South Miami. The new restaurant, created in partnership with the owners of the popular Uvaggio Wine Bar in Coral Gables, will focus on dim sum and modern Chinese food with Pan Asian sensibilities. Given his training in acclaimed restaurants in Hawaii and Hong Kong, this latest venture is a natural fit for Zitzmann.
Colombian native, Natalia Garcia discovered her passion for the culinary world at a young age. She joined Le Cordon Bleu of Culinary Arts to pursue her passion for cooking. This newfound passion for discovering cuisines from around the world lead her to Spain where she mastered many techniques working at the Sofitel hotel. In 2009 she moved back to Miami and began working at Spanish restaurant, Solea and years later worked at The Rusty Pelican as Executive Sous Chef. In 2011 she joined the Corporate Offices of Royal Caribbean, heading up the menu, recipe development and implementation for the fleet.
The best piece of advice Chef Santiago Gomez ever received is to, “Cook with love”. The Mexico City native’s love is driving him to define a new line between traditional and modern Mexican cuisine. Gomez’s interest for cooking sparked while he was working for a local seafood distributor. While making deliveries to various restaurants, he became curious about the kitchen and began observing chefs at work. This inspired him to go to culinary school and in 2007 he graduated from one of Mexico City’s top culinary academies – Centro Culinario Ambrosia. Gomez decided to further expand his knowledge and enrolled at the renowned Hofmann in Barcelona, Spain. There, Gomez honed his culinary skills. He was then drawn to sunny South Florida where he took a position at NOBU in Miami under the auspice of executive chef Thomas Buckley. A year later, Gomez was transferred back home to launch the opening of NOBU in Mexico City where he worked with re- nowned chef Nobu Matsushisa. His journey since then had the fortune to create and develop the kitchen of Cantina La 20 in Mexico City rescuing and positioning again the Cantina’s in Mexico, likewise he worked together with the renowned chef Edgar Nuñez in SUD777 (Latin America’s 50 best restaurants), in 2012 he went to New York City, where he did a stint at the critically-acclaimed, two-star Michelin restaurant, Daniel by renowned chef Daniel Boulud. As a pioneer of modern Mexican cuisine in Miami, Santiago has positioned Cantina La Veinte among the best restaurants in Miami Named: “Best Mexican Restaurant in Miami New Times”, “Best Mexican Restaurant in Zagat”, “Best Latin Restaurant in Zagat”, “31 Best Mexican Restaurant in America by Thrillist”. After the great success of Cantina, early 2017 Gómez opened his most recent restaurant Tacology “One of the best restaurants in Miami 2017 by Zagat” in which he takes tacos as an inspiration and transforms a traditional Mexican Taqueria in a Restaurant. In 2014 was recognized by Travel & Leisure as “An Ace Young Mexican Chef.” In 2017 he won the Iron Fork Miami title, He’s been a featured chef at the annual Food & Wine Festival (2016-2017), as well as various events at the American Airlines Arena, Marlins Stadium. Gomez regularly appears on Univison’s Despierta America, Telemundo’s Que Rico Con Kiko and Sabor Latino, NBC Six in the Mix and more. In 2017 he created the successful non-profit event “Recipes For Change” with renowned chefs from Latin America.