Leonor Espinosa_photos by Juan Pablo Gutierrez B. www.jpgfoto.com @jpgb_

Leonor Espinosa has secured the title of The World’s Best Female Chef 2022 in recognition for her gastronomic excellence.

The chef is the owner of Leo in Bogotá which reopened last year in the Chapinero district of Bogotá, Colombia.

Espinosa first opened the restaurant, originally called Leo, in 2005 which fused modern and traditional Colombian cooking.

Since then the venue has gone on to rank No.46 in The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2021 and has earned the reputation of being the go-to dining destination within the region.

Upon its reopening Espinosa constructed a tasting menu with 100 per cent of its ingredients sourced from within the country.

The concept was inspired by the idea of Ciclo-Bioma which explores Colombia’s varied ecosystems and biodiversity.

“Leonor Espinosa has become one of the most iconic Latin American chefs of her generation, championing both her country’s biodiversity and its cultural diversity like no other,” says Director of Content for The World’s 50 Best Restaurants, William Drew.

“Combining extensive scientific research with culinary innovation, she is a self-taught chef who continues to seek new knowledge, as well as to educate others.”

In addition to her culinary work Espinosa is also known for founding not-for-profit, Funleo, with her daughter and Leo’s Head Sommelier Laura Hernández-Espinosa.

The foundation has helped educate others on the ancestral food knowledge and cooking techniques of indigenous and Afro-Colombian people, all while promoting their health and wellbeing.

“I receive this award with great joy because now my voice can be heard a little more, which will allow me to continue basing gastronomy as a prevailing instrument in the generation of socioeconomic well-being, especially in developing countries,” says Espinosa.

Espinosa was also previously named Latin America’s Best Female Chef in 2017 and has received other accolades such as the Basque Culinary World Prize and the Estrella Damm Chefs’ Choice Award.