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Michelin Star Winner Daisy Ryan Named Chef for Upcoming Santa Barbara Wine Auction


Delmar León, the Los Olivos-based painter, will be this year’s Featured Artist.

August 22, 2022 (Santa Barbara, Calif.) – Restaurateur and philanthropist Chef Daisy Ryan – co-owner of Bell’s in Los Alamos and Bar Le Côte in Los Olivos – has been named the Santa Barbara Wine Auction’s 2022 Featured Chef and will develop the menu for the black tie gala this November.

“My fellow vintners and I are more than just fans of Chef Daisy’s amazing food,” says Jessica Gasca, the Santa Barbara Vintners Foundation President, and Story of Soil owner and winemaker. “We are inspired by how she gives back to our community as both a trailblazing business leader, and a philanthropist with her charity, Feed The Valley, that works to fight food insecurity in the Santa Ynez Valley. We are excited to partner with her for this year’s gala.”

The Santa Barbara Vintners Foundation (SBVF) is founded on the ethos “Grounded in Giving,” and the biennial Santa Barbara Wine Auction is the nonprofit’s main fundraising event. This year’s event will be held Nov. 11-12 at the Ritz-Carlton Bacara in Santa Barbara. It will be emceed celebrity Auctioneer Billy Harris. Grassini Family Vineyards is the 2022 Vintner Honoree.

All moneys raised will go to SBVF’s longtime philanthropic partners, Direct Relief, the Santa Barbara-based international humanitarian organization, and Community Health Centers (CHC), which provides medical services to Santa Barbara’s farmworker community.

The last auction, held in February 2020, proved essential to the CHC’s pandemic efforts. Money raised at the gala contributed directly to the CHC’s 39,515 free vaccinations, the opening of the Los Alamos clinic in April 2022, and the expansion of the CHC’s mobile clinic program.

A native of the Santa Ynez Valley, Ryan graduated from the Culinary Institute of America and spent several years working in some of New York City’s preeminent kitchens, including Gramercy Tavern, Chef’s Fare and Per Se. She and her husband Greg returned to the West Coast, where she helped open The Line Hotel in Los Angeles before heading to Austin to oversee the beverage program for McGuire Moorman Hospitality. In 2018, the couple permanently relocated to California’s Central Coast, opening Bell’s in Los Alamos, and launching their company, Companion Hospitality. Companion Hospitality now includes, Bell’s, Bar Le Côte, Priedite Barbecue in Los Alamos, and a new beer and wine bar, The Other Room, opening this fall.

Since opening Bell’s, Ryan was named a Food & Wine Best New Chef and the restaurant was named to Esquire’s Best New Restaurants list. In the fall of 2021 Bell’s earned a coveted Michelin Star.

The SBVF is also pleased to announce Delmar León will be the Auction’s Featured Artist. Born and raised in Venezuela, León is a self-taught painter based in Los Olivos. She began painting when she was 9 years old, in a unique community where an unlikely combination of art, mysticism, and Catholicism formed the fabric of her daily life. León is emerging as one of the most intriguing artists working today. Each of her paintings evokes a distinct and often strong emotional response in the viewer. Her work is often described as mystical and otherworldly.

León’s paintings will anchor all printed and digital materials for this year’s Auction and will be featured prominently at the event in November.

More details are forthcoming regarding the exciting auction offerings and entertainment to be featured at the event. 

For sponsorship opportunities, more information and ways to get involved please visit SBWineAuction.org.

About the Santa Barbara Wine Auction

The Santa Barbara Vintners Foundation is the philanthropic arm of the Santa Barbara Vintners. The biennial Santa Barbara Wine Auction is the Foundation’s marquee charity event. Since its inaugural gala in 2000, the Auction has raised more than $5 million for humanitarian organizations, including its longtime beneficiary and partner, Direct Relief. The 2022 Wine Auction will mark its 12th year of gathering together to support, strengthen and give back to its community. https://sbwineauction.org

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