Chef Angelo Sosa ’97, Food is an Integral Part of my Life

“I began to realize that food was an integral part at an early age. I entered The Culinary Institute of America at the age of 18.”—Angelo Sosa ’97
“I began to realize that food was an integral part at an early age. I entered The Culinary Institute of America at the age of 18.” —Angelo Sosa ’97

 CIA Alumni Bio

Angelo Sosa is executive chef/co-owner of Manhattan restaurant Añejo Tequilaria y Restaurante with two locations, one in Hell’s Kitchen and one in Tribeca, specializing in serving unique tequilas and traditional Mexican fare. The Tribeca outpost includes Abajo, a Mexican cantina-speakeasy within the restaurant, offering ingredient-driven cocktails and a small bites menu. He is also owner of Sosa Consulting Group.

The Best Mentors

After graduating from The Culinary Institute of America with high honors, Chef Sosa went to work on the line for Christian Bertrand at the four-diamond Stonehenge Restaurant & Inn in Ridgefield, CT, and later served as Chef Bertrand’s sous chef at Acqua when it opened in 1998 in Westport, CT. The following year, Chef Sosa was referred by Chef Bertrand to work with Jean-Georges Vongerichten, his future mentor. After two and a half years, Chef Sosa left to take an executive sous chef position at TanDa, located on New York’s Park Avenue. A year later, he returned to Chef Vongerichten’s employ at the Ocean Club at Dune restaurant in the Bahamas. Chef Sosa then went back to New York to serve as executive sous chef at Jean-Georges before joining the opening team for Spice Market, also as executive sous chef. In 2005, Chef Sosa became the executive chef at Yumcha in the West Village, where his interpretation of modern Chinese cuisine gained widespread acclaim. Later that year, he turned his attention to consulting for top restaurants such as Stephen Starr’s Buddakan, Masaharu Morimoto’s Morimoto, and Alain Ducasse’s Spoon.

A Place of His Own

In 2009, Chef Sosa launched his first restaurant, the fast-casual concept Xie Xie, and quickly earned’s New York’s Rising Star award for “Best New Restaurant Concept.” In 2010, he was cast as a Season 7 “cheftestant” on Bravo’s hit reality show Top Chef, and later competed on Top Chef All-Stars. It was as the show drew to a close that Chef Sosa launched Social Eatz, a gastropub whose menu reinterprets New York City staples with flavors from across Asia. Within just seven months of opening, Social Eatz was named Best Burger in New York City (and shortly after that, best in the nation) in’s readers’ choice poll. Chef Sosa next focused his attention on the West Coast, consulting on a menu revamp at the iconic Malibu Inn and joining SmithHouse Tap and Grill as consulting chef. In January 2012, he made his triumphant return to the East Coast with the award-winning Añejo Tequilaria y Restaurante, which offers his modern take on traditional Mexican cuisine.

His first cookbook, Flavor Exposed: 100 Global Recipes from Sweet to Salty, Earthy to Spicy, was released in 2012. His second book, Healthy Latin Eating: Our Favorite Family Recipes Remixed, was written in collaboration with TV and radio personality Angie Martinez and released in January 2015.

Chef Angelo Sosa majored in culinary arts at The Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park. He is the executive chef and co-owner of Añejo Tequilaria y Restaurante in New York City.