Chef Tony Blankenship, Rio Chama
A passion for cooking and travel inspired Chef Tony A. Blankenship to begin his career at age 19 as a dishwasher in a small town in Illinois. Inspiration led to the open road; he began a journey across America, working an array of kitchen jobs along the way. Refining his techniques in restaurants from Nevada to New Orleans to the Florida Keys, he eventually attended cooking school at the Arizona Culinary Institute in Scottsdale, Arizona. In 2003 he moved to New Mexico. His experience with every level of responsibility in kitchen work, combined with his appreciation for authentic technique and culinary tradition, enabled him to work with the various food and beverage programs at Hotel Santa Fe, Encantado Resort, and the The Club at Las Campanas. After cutting his chops he became Executive Chef at Rio Chama.