2019 Houston Rising Star Game Changer Chef Jonny Rhodes of Indigo

2019 Houston Rising Star Game Changer Chef Jonny Rhodes of Indigo

517 Berry Rd
Houston, TX 77022



For Jonny Rhodes, cooking is about culture. While serving in the United States Marine Corps in Afghanistan, he shared his culture (and a taste of home) by cooking on the barbecue pit for his fellow marines. Upon returning to the states, he devoted himself to cooking full time and enrolled in culinary school at the Art Institute of Houston. After graduation, he spent time in the kitchens of Michelin-starred Gramercy Tavern in New York, Forbes five-star restaurant Inn at Dos Brisas in southeast Texas, and Houston’s beloved Oxheart. In 2016, Rhodes began a pop-up inspired by Southern African American cuisine called The Jensen Chronicles, named after Rhodes’ childhood neighborhood. Wanting to learn more about African American history, Rhodes went on to get his bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Houston-Downtown.

In 2018, Rhodes and his wife, Chana, opened 13-seat Indigo in Houston’s Lindale Park neighborhood. Through rotating five course tasting menus, Rhodes pairs each dish with an educational moment in African American history. Eater Houston named Rhodes “Chef of the Year” and, in 2019, he was a semifinalist for the James Beard “Rising Star Chef” award. Indigo was named the eighth “Best New Restaurant of 2019” by Food & Wine magazine, and Rhodes will be opening an encore to Indigo serving classic soul food at a nearby establishment in 2020.