Oscar Ibarra

From family to food, Oscar had two driving influences on his affection for cooking: his grandmother and father. Throughout childhood, he spent most of his time with his grandmother helping in the kitchen. When she could no longer cook, his father assumed the responsibilities with Oscar by his side. It was during this time that his interest in Italian cuisine peaked. Wanting to make pizza or pasta from scratch but neither of them knowing how to, Oscar and his father experimented with techniques, seasonings, and flavors to learn together. He pursued a degree in culinary arts at Instituto Suizo de Gastronomía y Hotelería in Puebla, Mexico. During this time, Oscar undertook internships throughout Mexico, worked for a catering company, and cooked at the university's restaurant to complete his scholarship. Upon graduation in 2014, he moved to the states for a year, where he interned as a cook at The Big Cedar Lodge in Branson, Missouri. In 2016, he joined The Little Nell's culinary team. Beginning as a cook, Oscar worked his way up to supervisor, junior sous chef, chef tournant, and now to his current role as chef de cuisine of Ajax Tavern. "Ever since I started culinary school, I dreamed of being called Chef. Now, every day at work, everybody calls me Chef, as if I have lost my name. I like it!" Aspen has become his home away from home with a small-town feel, striking views, and mountain access year-round. He particularly appreciates the off-season, which allows him to travel home and enjoy time with his family. Outside the heated kitchen, Oscar relaxes by watching movies, reading, and doing puzzles. One day, he aspires to open a restaurant of his own.


Ajax Tavern

685 E Durant Ave
Aspen, CO 81611


(970) 920-6334 (970) 920-6334


11:30 am - 9 pm | Daily

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