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Emilio's Tapas - Chef Crispin

Because of its upscale and classic style, Emilio’s Tapas Sol y Nieve in Streeterville is a perfect place to enjoy good food and good company. This high-profile tapas restaurant lies steps away from Navy Pier and offers beautiful outdoor seating on one of the best patios in the city, along with a hand-crafted bar and elegant dining rooms. It’s a wonderful place to see and be seen while you share the delicate, simply-prepared hot and cold Spanish small plates that inspired media outlets to dub owner/chef Emilio Gervilla “the Tapas King.” Sol y Nieve serves up relaxing lunch breaks, after-work specialty cocktails, or leisurely and luxurious dinners. It also gives guests a dreamy Spanish experience right in the heart of Chicago.

Sol y Nieve is located at 215 E. Ohio St. just east of the Magnificent Mile — close to tourist attractions, Chicago landmarks, and nighttime hotspots. Under the watchful eye of Chef Emilio, Sol y Nieve continues to win awards and recognition from Zagat’s, Chicago Magazine, Food Industry news, and other media outlets. Sol y Nieve regularly holds events such as flamenco demonstrations, wine dinners, tastings, and live Spanish music. It also offers ever-changing daily specials, and can provide private dining or event planning for corporate outings as well as social gatherings.

Visit Emilio’s Tapas online at www.emiliostapas.com or call 312.467.7177 for additional information.

Meet Chef Emilio

Chef Emilio Gervilla, a native of Granada, Spain, has long been known as Chicago’s “Tapas King.” He’s responsible for putting Spanish small plates on the map locally, and he continues to oversee daily operations at his two Emilio’s Tapas restaurants, in Chicago and Hillside.

Emilio comes by his love for Spanish cuisine honestly. He spent an idyllic youth nurturing his passion for cooking at his grandfather’s Granada-based bakery and tapas bar. His early love for food developed into a lifelong career path; he completed several chef apprenticeships throughout Spain, adapting recipes from each region to create his own unique take on tapas.

In 1973, Emilio brought his enthusiasm for the flavors of his homeland to the United States. Between 1980 and 1988, he blended Spanish flavors and American tastes for several restaurants under the ownership of Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises. Under Emilio’s influence, LEYE opened Cafe Ba-Ba-Reeba in 1985. As chef there, he introduced Chicago to its first Spanish tapas bar and became directly responsible for the concept’s growing popularity. In doing so, Emilio achieved his personal dream - to head his own restaurant, where he could introduce people to his personalized style of Spanish cooking.

In 1988, Emilio took his dream a step further by opening the first tapas bar with his name on it. Emilio’s Tapas Restaurant in Hillside was soon packing in the crowds with simply-cooked small plates that feature complex Mediterranean- and New World-inspired flavor profiles. The buzz surrounding the place was so positive that in April 1999, Emilio opened a more centrally-located eatery, Emilio’s Tapas Sol y Nieve, in the Streeterville neighborhood. His restaurants are still consistently listed among the best in the city.

Today, the Chicagoland culinary scene is rich with Emilio’s influence. But that doesn’t affect his food and restaurant philosophy. The chef remains dedicated to providing guests with fresh, delicately-blended flavors, even after 27 years of continual operation. Both locations offer entertainment and culinary excitement, with dishes that meet every dietary need from vegetarian to gluten-free. Naturally, the food must also meet Chef Emilio’s high standards for quality, freshness, authenticity, and taste. He always offers city-sophisticated dishes at country prices, and his restaurants provide a pleasant and upscale ambiance, indoors or out.

Nor does his high profile affect his love of his daily routine. You’ll still find Emilio working the line, and you may see his wife, Ann-Marie, engaging with guests in the dining room.

Emilio continues to do what he loves best, and he’s all about sharing - both his food, and his passion for the food.

AWARDS

CRITICS CHOICE, TOP 25 RESTAURANTS OF CHICAGO
CHICAGO MAGAZINE
Five years straight

SILVER PLATTER AWARD FOOD INDUSTRY NEWS
IN RECOGNITION OF BEING SELECTED BY CHICAGOLAND RESTAURANTEURS
AS A FAVORITE PLACE TO DINE
Five years straight

ONE OF AMERICAS TOP RESTAURANTS -- Rated Excellent
ZAGAT'S
Six years straight

ONE OF CHICAGO'S TEN BEST NEW RESTAURANTS
CHICAGO MAGAZINE
Year opened

EL COTO DE RIOJA PAELLA PARADE WINNER OF THE TOP HONOR
"CROWD'S CHOICE PAELLA PARADE PLEASER"
Two years straight

REVIEWS

"If there's such a thing as Chicago's Tapas King, the crown belongs to Emilio Gervilla"
--Anne Spiselman, Crains Chicago Business

"Emilio Gervilla does not just sell Spanish tapas food as a trendy profit maker.
He sells it as part of a healthy way of life." 
--Dimitra DeFotis, Daily Herald

"This restaurant offers an unforgettable culinary vacation to a delightful part of the world that
Chicago area diners are not often able to visit without a passport."
 --Ann Ambrosia, Pioneer Press