New West’s Award-Winning El Santo Announces New Executive Chef, Bar Manager


The GOODS from El Santo

New Westminster, BC | New Westminster’s award-winning contemporary Mexican restaurant el Santo is thrilled to welcome a new Executive Chef and Bar Manager to their team and owner Alejandro Diaz is excited for what they will bring to the table. Samuel Fabbro, who has been with el Santo as Sous Chef since its conception, has been promoted to Executive Chef with renowned bartender Vanessa Coupar being brought on as Bar Manager.

Samuel Fabbro spent four years at iconic Vancouver restaurant Cin Cin mentoring under Andrew Richardson, as well as time at Raincity Grill. He was also the Sous Chef at Cocktails and Canapes in Gastown, the official caterer of both the Deighton Cup and TEDX Talks. Having been with el Santo since opening, he explains, “I liked the design and atmosphere of the restaurant, read their menu and noticed they focussed on all local ingredients, something I value highly as well. I have a passion for Mexican cuisine and wanted to add my spin as the Sous Chef. I am thrilled to be taking on my new role as Executive Chef and continue to grow what makes el Santo so successful and loved.” Fabbro will be working on creating menus that are even more local, focussing on specific Pacific Northwest ingredients while using Mexican flavours and techniques; the farm to table mantra will continue with him leading the kitchen.

Vanessa Coupar has had her share of experiences working at some of the most renowned locations across BC, including Mission Hill Winery named one of the top five restaurants in the world by Travel and Leisure Magazine. From this experience, she fell in love with wine taking WSET 3 which landed her at Kelowna’s acclaimed RauDz Regional Table. Known for being one of the pioneers of the Farm to Table movement in BC, it was here that Coupar’s passion for the movement began. After moving to Vancouver from stints in the Okanagan, she landed at one of Vancouver’s best wine and cocktail bars, Uva, where she worked and trained under Sabrine Dalliwahl, Vancouver Magazine’s 2017 Bartender of the Year. While at Uva, she nurtured her bartending craft and when the Bar Manager role became available at el Santo, Coupar jumped at the chance. “New West is an incredibly vibrant, diverse and interesting neighbourhood, she says. “When I came into el Santo’s doors, I knew Alejandro was onto something special. The food is amazing, he has the most incredible back bar, and agave collection, and I saw that there was a lot of potential to elevate the cocktail program as well.”

Since openings its doors in 2015 el Santo has prided itself on supporting local merchants, and both Fabbro and Coupar share this passion. Both the bar program and food menu are a reflection of the fantastic ingredients of the Pacific Northwest, with a Mexican twist.

Owner Alejandro Diaz says that he is “looking forward to seeing what Samuel and Vanessa bring to the flavours and culture of el Santo. They are both experts at what they do and we are very happy to have them on board creating delicious new recipes. The pairings they will come up with are sure to be a hit.”

Starting on Thursday July 20, guests can expect to see a special feature sheet with dishes inspired by summer ingredients, paired with fresh and light cocktails, like the Verde Picante that features Tequila, Ancho Reyes Lacquer, and the beloved house made Verdita. With special menu items like wild boar rubbed and roasted in traditional Mexican spices, topped with garlic scapes, beet tops, and sunflower sprouts, all sourced from one farmer, guests will be wowed by Fabbro’s and Coupar’s creations.

Be sure to visit el Santo at 680 Columbia Street and get a taste of contemporary Mexican cuisine.

For more information, visit



 680 Columbia St, New Westminster, BC V3M 1A8
Telephone: 604 553 1849  | Email:
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Hours: Sunday to Thursday 11:30am – 10pm & Friday, Saturday 11:30am – 11pm


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Alejandro Diaz- Owner
Sam Fabbro – Executive Chef
Vanessa Coupar – Bar Manager



Taking home Gold for best Latin restaurant at this year’s Vancouver Magazine Awards, el Santo is located in historic New Westminster, British Columbia, at 680 Columbia St. Open seven days a week, el Santo offers menu items that will intrigue all taste buds. With vegan and gluten free options and a kid’s menu, el Santo showcases both the diversity of Mexican food and the fresh, local, and sustainable ingredients of the West Coast in creative dishes and a welcoming dining room.

Check out our ever-changing menu filled with contemporary Mexican cuisine and more about our story at

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