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Leonor Espinosa

“Gastronomy is a driver of economic and social development. Cooking is a transformative tool."

Leonor Espinosa is a renowned Colombian chef. She is the owner of LEO, a restaurant that tells the story of Colombia’s biocultural heritage through native species, customs and traditions. Thanks in part to this innovative concept, LEO is the only Colombian restaurant on the 2019 World's 50 Best Restaurants list.

Throughout her career, she has been able to unite tradition, memory and creativity. Her culinary style elevates the popular and indigenous side of Colombian flavours, combining contemporary art with field research, anthropological vision and immersion in Colombia’s various regions.

Espinosa holds degrees in economics, advertising and plastic arts. In 2008, her passion for gastronomic research inspired her to establish the Leo Espinosa Foundation, FUNLEO, with the mission of identifying, vindicating and promoting the culinary traditions of Colombian communities. FUNLEO has become a strong supporter of traditional Colombian cuisine and its environmental richness. Today, it works to protect ancestral culinary knowledge by empowering and training local chefs.

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