I was born and raised in Puerto Rico. At 18 years old, I decided to take a risk and pursue my passion for food. I moved to the United States and started my culinary career. I owe my career in the culinary arts to my aunt. As a kid, I would go to her house and help her gardening fresh...Read More
I was born and raised in Puerto Rico. At 18 years old, I decided to take a risk and pursue my passion for food. I moved to the United States and started my culinary career. I owe my career in the culinary arts to my aunt. As a kid, I would go to her house and help her gardening fresh herbs, fruits and vegetables she grew in an open area on her roof. She would then cook with me using the ingredients we grew straight from her garden. Her lifetime passion for fresh, locally grown foods truly fueled my interest in cooking from a very young age and has driven my overall cooking style.
I began my tenure in the United States the way many others begin their career – by paying my dues. In 2003, I started as a line cook working breakfast, lunch, dinner shifts for high volume events at the Ft. Lauderdale Convention Center. In one short year the next opportunity had presented itself—this time at Mr. Jackson’s Steakhouse—where I went on to become the Lunchtime Chef for one of Las Olas Boulevard’s most established steakhouses.
Two years later, I moved to South Carolina to assume an Executive Sous Chef position. After a year in the quiet Greenville, SC, I found myself yearning for the city life and decided to bring my talents to Todd English’s Blue Zoo at The Walt Disney Swan & Dolphin Resort in Orlando, FL. Three years later, I was offered the Executive Chef position at Todd English’s New York restaurant, Olives NY at the W Hotel in Union Square. Olives NYC was subsequently purchased by Gerber Group. Gerber Group appointed me to stay on as Executive Chef to launch and run their new restaurant concept, Irvington Bar and Restaurant. I also planned and opened two other Gerber Group restaurants while simultaneously running Irivington- Mr. Purple at The Indigo Hotel and Campbell at Grand Central Station.
Fast forward to today, I reside in Miami and have been at the helm of the James Beard Award Winning Chef Richard Sandoval’s Pan-Latin restaurant, Toro Toro. For the past 3 years I have been the Executive Chef and oversee all culinary activities while drawing on the bold and innovative Pan-Latin infused flavors that make Toro Toro the unique Miami dining experience it is.Read Less