José María’s dream

José María Ruiz: Entrepreneur, chef,
sommelier, viticulturist, wine-cellar owner,
entrepreneur, a dreamer.

José María’s dream

José María Ruiz: Entrepreneur, chef,
sommelier, viticulturist, wine-cellar owner,
entrepreneur, a dreamer.

President of Grupo José María, which includes ‘Gastronomía José María’ (‘restaurante José María’, ‘José María Eventos’, ‘Cochinillo Viajero’, la granja ‘Agrocorte Gourmet’ y la nueva finca) and ‘Alma de Carraovejas’ (‘Pago de Carraovejas’, ‘Ossian, Vides y Vinos’, ‘Milsetentayseis’, ‘Viña Mein’ and ‘Emilio Rojo’).

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE

José María Ruiz Benito is one of the greatest exponents of Segovian gastronomy

He exemplifies the balance between respect for the traditions of the ancient Castilian innkeepers and the way traditional cuisine has innovated to suit the modern palette.

With a solid professional grounding going back as far as the Sixties, when he passed through the varying sections of a range of restaurants, from the kitchen to the dining room, in his early years José María Ruiz showed leanings towards an in-depth study of the world of wines as sommelier.

As early as 1972 he already excelled in this field, being selected to represent Spain in the first world sommelier contest, organized by the International Office of Vine and Wine in Milan (Italy), where he obtained the bronze medal with a diploma of Honour and the title of international master of cups, competing with professionals from 32 countries.

Showing his constant desire to make improvements to his business, and attracted by the possibilities he felt the Ribera del Duero region presented.

In 1987, it was with great excitement that he embarked on a project to create a model vineyard plantation in Peñafiel, including a production winery, which would then give rise to the prestigious “Pago de Carraovejas”, wines, which harmonize so well with the dishes that come out of his kitchen.

This exciting project boasts a well-cared for plantation that is considered exemplary, measuring 160 hectares, with Tinto Fino (Tempranillo), Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot wine varietals. The winery is located in the centre of the estate, and is equipped with the most modern and advanced processing and aging techniques.

It was in 1982, that he decided to go it alone, opening up the restaurant “José María”, in Cronista Lecea street, bang in the old quarter of the city of Segovia, next to the Plaza Mayor, with the definite intention of revamping the traditional cuisine of the region, using creativity and a personal touch to adapt the local products of Segovia to new trends, basically maintaining the naturalness of the flavours and aromas that were typical of each dish.

To turn his suckling pig into the benchmark Segovian dish par excellence, he decided to create his own breeding farm, where he embarked on his first scientific studies on cross-breeding and what nutrition the mothers needed in order to obtain a raw material of exceptional quality.

In 2002, this tireless effort in search of product excellence would lead him to obtain, together with other collaborators, the “Guarantee Mark” seal for Segovian roasted suckling pig (PROCOSE), a trademark officially granted and registered by the Ministry of Agriculture. José María Ruiz Benito is the chairman of PROCOSE.

In 2013, the Ossian project was also linked to the family group, meaning that the Segovian area of ​​Verdejo would now be chosen by José María to produce wines with a clear Burgundian influence, and yet upholding the purity of the Verdejo in all its lines.

Ambivium restaurant was inaugurated in 2017, the gastronomic space of Pago de Carraovejas winery that offers modern an innovative cuisine that honours tradition and fresh, local ingredients.

In December 2018, José María acquired the ‘Agrocorte Gourmet’ farm, eager to achieve excellence and offer prime quality ingredients, and as an opportunity to supervise every stage of our suckling pigs’ breeding process, so as to comply with the requirements of the Guarantee of Quality Denomination (Denominación Marca de Garantía). We’ve been investing more in research, development and innovation by studying porcine genetics in order to develop their specific genetic characteristics.

Two new wineries were inaugurated in 2019:, Milsetentayseis, a centenary vineyard in Ribera del Duero and Viña Mein · Emilio Rojo, home to Ribeiro wines.

He exemplifies the balance between respect for the traditions of the ancient Castilian innkeepers and the way traditional cuisine has innovated to suit the modern palette.

With a solid professional grounding going back as far as the Sixties, when he passed through the varying sections of a range of restaurants, from the kitchen to the dining room, in his early years José María Ruiz showed leanings towards an in-depth study of the world of wines as sommelier.

As early as 1972 he already excelled in this field, being selected to represent Spain in the first world sommelier contest, organized by the International Office of Vine and Wine in Milan (Italy), where he obtained the bronze medal with a diploma of Honour and the title of international master of cups, competing with professionals from 32 countries.

It was in 1982, that he decided to go it alone, opening up the restaurant “José María”, in Cronista Lecea street, bang in the old quarter of the city of Segovia, next to the Plaza Mayor, with the definite intention of revamping the traditional cuisine of the region, using creativity and a personal touch to adapt the local products of Segovia to new trends, basically maintaining the naturalness of the flavours and aromas that were typical of each dish.

Showing his constant desire to make improvements to his business, and attracted by the possibilities he felt the Ribera del Duero region presented.

In 1987, it was with great excitement that he embarked on a project to create a model vineyard plantation in Peñafiel, including a production winery, which would then give rise to the prestigious “Pago de Carraovejas”, wines, which harmonize so well with the dishes that come out of his kitchen.

This exciting project boasts a well-cared for plantation that is considered exemplary, measuring 160 hectares, with Tinto Fino (Tempranillo), Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot wine varietals. The winery is located in the centre of the estate, and is equipped with the most modern and advanced processing and aging techniques.

To turn his suckling pig into the benchmark Segovian dish par excellence, he decided to create his own breeding farm, where he embarked on his first scientific studies on cross-breeding and what nutrition the mothers needed in order to obtain a raw material of exceptional quality.

In 2002, this tireless effort in search of product excellence would lead him to obtain, together with other collaborators, the “Guarantee Mark” seal for Segovian roasted suckling pig (PROCOSE), a trademark officially granted and registered by the Ministry of Agriculture. José María Ruiz Benito is the chairman of PROCOSE.

In 2013, the Ossian project was also linked to the family group, meaning that the Segovian area of ​​Verdejo would now be chosen by José María to produce wines with a clear Burgundian influence, and yet upholding the purity of the Verdejo in all its lines.

Ambivium restaurant was inaugurated in 2017, the gastronomic space of Pago de Carraovejas winery that offers modern an innovative cuisine that honours tradition and fresh, local ingredients.

In December 2018, José María acquired the ‘Agrocorte Gourmet’ farm, eager to achieve excellence and offer prime quality ingredients, and as an opportunity to supervise every stage of our suckling pigs’ breeding process, so as to comply with the requirements of the Guarantee of Quality Denomination (Denominación Marca de Garantía). We’ve been investing more in research, development and innovation by studying porcine genetics in order to develop their specific genetic characteristics.

Two new wineries were inaugurated in 2019:, Milsetentayseis, a centenary vineyard in Ribera del Duero and Viña Mein · Emilio Rojo, home to Ribeiro wines.

In January 2020, he acquired an estate to host big events as an answer to our clients’ large events and requests.

José María Ruiz has been a contributor to newspapers and magazines specializing in cuisine, he has participated on forums, at conferences, congresses and on opinion boards. The cuisine of José María Ruiz has travelled throughout Spain and the world making presentations and hosting workshops, where his work with suckling pigs and the results of his breeding farm have met with acclaim.

 

SOME OF HIS ACHIEVEMENTS

Awards and Distinctions

MILÁN, 1971

THE BRONZE MEDAL WITH A DIPLOMA OF HONOUR AND THE TITLE OF INTERNATIONAL MASTER OF CUPS

BARCELONA, 1983

NAMED MEMBER OF THE CHAINE DES ROTISSEURS, HE IS CURRENTLY THE BAILIO DE CASTILLA Y LEÓN.

1985

HE IS APPOINTED A NUMBERED ACADEMICIAN OF THE ACADEMY OF TASTAVIN DE SANT HUMBERT.

1985

THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT, TOURISM AND COMMUNICATIONS AWARDS HIM THE PLAQUE OF TOURISM MERIT.

TORINO, 1990

JURY OF THE INTERNATIONAL KITCHEN COMPETITION
«IL TOCCO BIANCO» OF IFGT.

1998

INTERNATIONAL GASTRONOMY AWARD C.E.A.

2007

SEGOVIAN ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR AWARD, AWARDED BY THE SEGOVIAN BUSINESS FEDERATION.

2007

“CECALE DE ORO” AWARD FOR CASTILLA Y LEÓN
FOR HIS PROFESSIONAL CAREER

2010

“EARTH OF SEGOVIA” PRIZE FOR THE BEST ENTREPRENERIAL TRAJECTORY AWARDED BY THE SEGOVIAN CENTRE IN MADRID

2015

“ROYAL SEAL OF THE CLOTHS” AWARD FOR CORPORATE EXCELLENCE AWARDED BY THE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY

2016

“CASTILE AND LEON BUSINESS FAMILY” AWARD, FROM THE FAMILY BUSINESS ASSOCIATION OF CASTILE AND LEON.

2017

EX AEQUO AWARD FROM SALÓN DE GOURMETS

2017

SPECIAL GUEST OF PALADAR GASTRONOMIC FAIR IN PARAGUAY

2018

GOLD STAR AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE FROM THE INSTITUTE OF PROFESSIONAL EXCELLENCE

2018

NATIONAL HOSPITALITY BUSINESS AWARD FROM THE SPANISH CONFEDERATION OF HOSPITALITY BUSINESS

2018

CAREER LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD FROM SPANISH NEWSPAPER ‘EL MUNDO’

SOME OF HIS ACHIEVEMENTS

Awards and Distinctions

MILÁN, 1971

THE BRONZE MEDAL WITH A DIPLOMA OF HONOUR AND THE TITLE OF INTERNATIONAL MASTER OF CUPS

BARCELONA, 1983

NAMED MEMBER OF THE CHAINE DES ROTISSEURS, HE IS CURRENTLY THE BAILIO DE CASTILLA Y LEÓN

1985

HE IS APPOINTED A NUMBERED ACADEMICIAN OF THE ACADEMY OF TASTAVIN DE SANT HUMBERT

1985

THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT, TOURISM AND COMMUNICATIONS AWARDS HIM THE PLAQUE OF TOURISM MERIT

TORINO 1990

JURY OF THE INTERNATIONAL KITCHEN COMPETITION «IL TOCCO BIANCO» OF  IFGT

1998

INTERNATIONAL GASTRONOMY AWARD C.E.A.

2007

SEGOVIAN ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR AWARD, AWARDED BY THE SEGOVIAN BUSINESS FEDERATION.

2007

“CECALE DE ORO” AWARD FOR CASTILLA Y LEÓN FOR HIS PROFESSIONAL CAREER

2010

“EARTH OF SEGOVIA” PRIZE FOR THE BEST ENTREPRENERIAL TRAJECTORY AWARDED BY THE SEGOVIAN CENTRE IN MADRID

2015

ROYAL SEAL OF THE CLOTHS” AWARD FOR CORPORATE EXCELLENCE AWARDED BY THE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY

2016

 “CASTILE AND LEON BUSINESS FAMILY” AWARD, FROM THE FAMILY BUSINESS ASSOCIATION OF CASTILE AND LEON.

2017

SPECIAL GUEST OF PALADAR GASTRONOMIC FAIR IN PARAGUAY

2018

OLD STAR AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE FROM THE INSTITUTE OF PROFESSIONAL EXCELLENCE

2018

NATIONAL HOSPITALITY BUSINESS AWARD FROM THE SPANISH CONFEDERATION OF HOSPITALITY BUSINESS

2018

CAREER LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD FROM SPANISH NEWSPAPER ‘EL MUNDO’

Do you know our Director Rocío Ruiz?

In her biography you will know a little more.

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