Chef John Salazar is the owner and executive chef of JA Salazar Catering. A native Texan and third-generation Houstonian, Chef Salazar started his professional career with the Westin hotel group and studied under Chef Carl Walker at Brennan’s.
During his tenure as the Executive Chef at Michaeline’s on West Alabama, Chef Salazar received high praises and esteemed recognition for his New American Fusion cuisine and artistry in plate presentation. He was named one of the top 30 Chefs in the City by Inside Houston magazine, and F&B industry’s 35 top young talents. The Urban Latino magazine featured many of Chef
Salazar’s award-winning recipes in their Sabor column. In the articles,
Chef Salazar was regarded as one of “the finest Latino chefs in the
country,” as well as “the city’s most renowned culinary architects.”
Between 2001 and 2003, Chef Salazar was the Executive Chef at Minute Maid Park, home of the Houston Astros. He oversaw daily operations in all kitchens, VIP suites, and the exclusive Diamond Club. His strong background in fine dining proved to be invaluable in charity functions and other important events held at Minute Maid Park, where the guest lists often included Hollywood celebrities and key political players.
Following his post at the Minute Maid Park, Chef Salazar was recruited by the Pappas corporation to lead their research & development team. He also consulted on many other restaurant start-up projects and held
kitchen management positions at the Houston Country Club, the Houston
Club, and the Sugar Creek Country Club. In 2012, Chef Salazar opened the brand new BBVA Compass Stadium as their first executive chef. He was responsible for menu developments for the Chicago-based Levy Restaurants at many of their sporting venues, including Toyota Center.
Well respected by his peers, Chef Salazar was elected president of the Professional Chefs Association, American Culinary Federation Houston Chapter, and held the position for
three terms. When he is not busy at work, Chef Salazar enjoys teaching cooking classes and judging culinary competitions.