Chef & Co-Owner
Antonio Vidal, chef and co-owner of Ranch 616, began cooking at a young age. Born inBellflower, California and raised in San Antonio, Texas, Antonio loved playing football;his grandmother’s house rule was that he had to help her make dinner before he couldplay. In time, Antonio’s love of cooking eclipsed his love of football.At sixteen, Antonio began his career as a cook at Po’ Folks, an American familyrestaurant chain. Following high school graduation, he worked as a chef in San Antonio,Texas at the Holiday Inn Riverwalk, followed by the Hyatt Regency, Sheraton Posada,and the American Orient Express—a train that went from D.C. to San Francisco. Antonioalso did consulting work for the Gage Hotel in West Texas, the 8.0 in Fort Worth, Texasand the Flying Fish group in Dallas, Texas.Antonio eventually moved to Austin, Texas to open Central Market and then moved toFort Worth, Texas to become executive chef at Michaels, a restaurant specializing incontemporary ranch cuisine.In 1998, Antonio became co-owner with Kevin Williamson and chef at Ranch 616 inAustin, Texas. Ranch 616 offers innovative cuisine that encompasses flavors from theGulf of Mexico to the border towns of Texas. Along with prime cuts of Texas beef andchicken, the restaurant serves whole fish and other fresh seafood daily.Antonio’s culinary influences include the chefs he has worked with, such as Chef JuliaChilds, Chef Susan Spicer, and Chef Paul Prudhomme. He has traveled all over thecountry to food and wine festivals cooking for and representing organizations such as theNational Pork Board and the Texas Department of Agriculture. Antonio has also visitedEl Salvador and Guatemala representing the U.S. Meat Export Federation on numeroustrips and is a Texas Beef Council Chef.When Antonio is not in the kitchen, he enjoys playing sports and cooking for his friendsand family. He lives in Austin, Texas.