Restaurateur Javier Ramirez of Alter - Biography

Miami, FL

October 2016

Javier Ramirez is a Venezuelan-born, Miami-based economist who spent 20 years as a hedge fund risk manager before deciding to formally join the hospitality industry. Although he had been channeling his culinary interests on his blog GourmandJ, taking photos of food wasn’t enough to fuel his passion for gastronomy. In 2014, he teamed with friend Leo Monterrey and Chef Brad Kilgore to open Alter in Miami’s emerging Wynwood arts district. Alter quickly became a local favorite, winning The Miami Herald’s “Restaurant of the Year,” a Johnson & Wales University ZEST Award for “Best New Restaurant,” and was a semi-finalist for James Beard’s “Best New Restaurant.” Kilgore also was nominated for James Beard’s “Rising Star Chef of the Year,” and won a StarChefs Rising Stars Award in 2016.

In 2015, Ramirez joined internationally renowned Pastry Chef Antonio Bachour in the opening of Bachour Bakery + Bistro. Ramirez is also backing the opening of another StarChefs Rising Stars Award winner, Phuket Thongsodchareondee’s Cake Thai Kitchen. Javier still posts photos on his food blog, and even won a Miami New Times award for “Best Food Instagram” in 2015. Ramirez is married, plays recreational tennis, and prefers to make restaurant reservations before booking his flights.