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Cassy Vires

Chef Cassy Vires
Photo © Jennifer Silverberg

Restaurant: Home Wine Kitchen, Table (Read a review)

Location: Maplewood, MO; St. Louis

Why She's Amazing: Because she channeled her love for throwing dinner parties for friends into a full-time career, serving delicious, inspired New American dishes.

Culinary School: The Art Institute of Houston

Background: Ernesto's Wine Bar, Viking Cooking School (St. Louis)

Quintessential Dish: Boar chop with sumac, caramelized onions and brussels sprouts

On Being a Female Chef: "I always really struggled to make my way into the kitchen. Growing up in a small town, putting a female in the kitchen wasn't at the top of most chefs' lists, but my mom told me, 'You're my daughter. You're a fighter. You're going to go to culinary school and knock those doors down.'"

Double Threat: Vires was nominated for a James Beard Foundation Award—for her writing as a columnist for Feast magazine.

Wine List: All glasses on Vires's list are $8; all bottles, $30. She wanted patrons to pick based on preferences, not price.

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Congratulations to Nicholas Elmi, winner of Top Chef: New Orleans, the 11th season of Bravo's Emmy-Award winning, hit reality series.

Already looking forward to next year (June 19-21, 2015)? Relive your favorite moments from the culinary world's most sensational weekend in the Rocky Mountains.