His origins, linked to traditional cuisine, are what led Javier Estévez to make offal his star ingredient.
At the age of 35, he has devoted more than 15 years to gastronomy. After studying at the Hospitality and Catering School of Galicia for two years, he worked in Madrid in the kitchen of the Hotel Villa Magna (5* Grand Luxe), and at the El Cenador de Salvador (one Michelin star). He later worked at Tragabuches (one Michelin star) in Málaga, at El Bohío (one Michelin star) in Illescas (Toledo), at Pepe Vieira (one Michelin star) in Sanxenxo (Pontevedra), at La Calma (Salamanca), and at Villena (one Michelin star) in Segovia.
From 2010 to 2016, he worked at El Mesón de Doña Filo in Colmenar del Arroyo (Madrid) together with Julio Reoyo, his ‘gastronomic father’, who introduced him to the mysteries of recipes for offal, scraps and other ‘less elegant’ variety meats.
During those years, he participated twice in the Chef of the Year competition, winning, on both occasions the Premio Aperitivo Codorníu y and, the second time he took part he came third in the final at tercer puesto en la final de Alimentaria 2012, after winning in the semifinal where he represented Castilla-La Mancha and Madrid.
He also works as a culinary consultant: at the end of 2012 at Pura Tasca, in the Dominican Republic, the following year – along with Julio Reoyo – at La Finca de Jiménez Barbero, and recently as gastronomic director of the LAVACA Group. He has occasionally consulted for groups too, such as La Musa and La Rumba, both in Madrid.
The leap to fame he has become well-known after participating in 2013 in the first edition of the Spanish version of Top Chef, where he came fifth.
In 2015 he set up La Tasquería de Javi Estévez de Javi Estévez as an original establishment whose aim is to revive a typical culinary tradition of Madrid. He has made offal fashionable by offering it in an elegant, fun and different way with a laid-back, casual touch, and which, in just a few months, has become one of the capital’s must-try restaurants.
This venture has earned him various prizes, such as the 2016 Upcoming Chef award at the international gastronomy congress of Madrid Fusión and The Best Restaurant for Traditional Food at the eighth edition of the ABC’s Salsa de Chiles awards, and he won the Most Innovative Idea at the 1st Gastronomy Awards of Madrid in 2016 as well as a special mention for the Best Newcomer Restaurant at the 13th Metrópoli Gastronomy Awards. His initiative has received Bib Gourmand status from the Michelin Guide, a promising recognition that predicts an ascent to the culinary Olympus, and his first M from the 2018 El Mundo Metrópoli de Madrid Guide.
Enthusiastic by nature, in June 2017 he set up – along with Carrusel Deportivo of the Cadena Ser TV channel – a new gourmet sandwich project called John Barrita to design World Cup Sandwiches for the World Cup 2018 held in Russia.
Praised by food critics and the public alike, he has been named ambassador for the M Producto Certificado seal, the face of Knorr Professional stock bases, and he is a regular protagonist at forums and congresses in countries such as France, the USA, Hungary and Russia. His original creations have aroused interest in prestigious media outlets, such as The New York Times, and on TV programmes with Andrew Zimmern, as well as on George Foreman’s reality-travel show Better Late than Never.
In 2017 he returned to television as the host of Play Chez on RTVE’s digital channel. More recently, the website Booking.com chose him to write ‘The 2018 Guide to Essential Gastronomic Destinations’.
In 2019 the prestigious MICHELIN SPAIN AND PORTUGAL GUIDE awarded him 1 Star for his work at La Tasquería de Javi Estévez. In 2020 he gets the renewal and in 2021 he has seen all his efforts rewarded, in a very complicated year, by renewing the Star again.