Executive Chef/ Owner

Chef Simon Restrepo

If there is anyone to demonstrate that small steps can lead to great success, it is Executive Chef Simon Restrepo of Vello Restaurant & Bar. Simon has been working with culinary icon Lydia Shire as her Protégé since he first came to Boston as a 16-year-old Colombian immigrant in 1989.

After meeting Lydia Shire in 1985 in Colombia and coming to America to live the "American Dream", Simon started his journey as a dishwasher at her restaurant, BIBA ("Back in Boston Again") 

In 1989, Restrepo committed to a culinary career. Hard work and perseverance paid off as he made his way from various kitchen stations, including " Bread Dough" to "Garde Mange" to "Grill." and became a Sous Chef and For over three decades, Simon has been by Shire's side as she opened one hit after the other, including Excelsior, Pignoli, Locke-Ober and Towne Stove and Spirits.

In 2004 Simon Left Excelsior and opened Siblings Rivalry Boston as Sous Chef . Simon says "working with the Kinkead Brothers was such an experience - two chefs, two menus , and two knowledge banks!"

In 2008, Restrepo helped Lydia open the award-winning Scampo, the dynamic first floor restaurant in Boston's Liberty Hotel. Currently, he heads the bustling kitchen. In addition, he was been a key contributor in making Scampo one of Boston's "Best New Restaurants" in America, named by Esquire magazine (2008). His dedication and creative talent in the kitchen keep Scampo as busy as the first day when it opened.

Simon enjoys traveling to events across the country including The James Beard Foundation Awards in New York City and Meals on Wheels in Los Angeles.

In 2020 our world entered the historic Covid Pandemic. Simon still decided in the spring of 2021 to open up his own restaurant, named VELLO, after the nickname that someone in his past would call him ("Hey Vello ,How are you doing?") Simon takes his Italian background from the knowledge he has learned from Lydia and so many other great Chefs. He offers comfort dishes like the one minute steak with soft grits or braised short ribs with beet vinaigrette & potato gnocchi. Simon's vision gives us flavors from the Italian & Mediterranean cuisine , but also infuses his Colombian roots. 

"We Are Family and We Welcome You to Vello. " Said by Simon