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Julia Helton

Chicago, IL, United States

Head chef at Village Tap


Born in Nashville, Julia quickly moved to Memphis in search of Dusty Springfield but was late by a few years. Disillusioned by the age of 6, she left the state after Elvis died. Drifting aimlessly around the country finding solace in regional cuisine Julia vowed to learn to cook. Iowa offered steak and unbelievable empanadas. It snowed the year she was in Michigan. Oregon hosted the kind of Asian food she had never before been privy. Back in the south she toured North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Tennessee, sampling all the kinds of BBQ offered. She spent a year in France under the guise of “student” but all she really did was pester the little old ladies for recipes. Upon return to the States she declared herself unfit for school and found a French ex-pat willing to mentor her in the mysterious ways of the Cordon Bleu. After years of training, and a four year tenure under Pano Karatosis in Atlanta, she returned to her home in Nashville. A few years later she bought her very own place, The Family Wash, and was content. Soon another rock death forced her to reexamine at her life. “James Brown ruined my Christmas!” she wailed. Four months later she sold her little restaurant and opened a catering firm specializing in fantastic affairs for the Nashville crowd.  Having done all she could in Nashville, to Chicago she moved where she is head chef of Village Tap, private chef and photographer. See her work at thejuliakitchen.com.


Chicago, IL, United States