I hail from the vibrant culinary heritage of Puebla, Mexico, where the kitchen was my earliest classroom, thanks to my grandmother and aunts. As a child, I was captivated by the art of cooking, reveling in the sights and tastes of the incredible dishes they prepared. Little did I know that this early fascination would evolve into my lifelong passion.
In my early twenties, I embarked on a journey to New York City, aspiring to make my mark in the world of culinary arts. Though my initial attempts met with challenges, my determination led me to Connecticut, where I found myself washing dishes in a cozy Fairfield restaurant. This unassuming start was the catalyst for my culinary adventure.
The magic of cooking quickly became apparent to me. The thrill of creating something new and distinct, followed by the sheer joy of savoring the results, was irresistible.
After years spent in the trenches, starting as a dishwasher and eventually ascending to the role of a line cook, I realized the importance of formal training and the necessity of exploring diverse cultures and techniques. My culinary quest took me along the picturesque West Coast of the United States, where I sought to broaden my understanding of various cuisines. I honed my skills at renowned establishments such as Gibsons Italia in Chicago, The Mark by Jean-Georges in New York, G’ios Italian and Cena’s restaurant in Tampa Bay, and the iconic steakhouse, The Forge, in Miami, among others.
Collaborating with the industry's best chefs served as the crucible for my culinary identity. Through these experiences, I meticulously crafted my style and mastered the intricacies of French, Italian, and Latin cuisines.
Returning to my roots in Connecticut, I assumed the role of chef for the upscale Mexican restaurant group, Cb5, with establishments in Greenwich and Norwalk. I also lent my expertise to Red Lulu and Lolitas, where I amalgamated my Mexican heritage with the diverse techniques I'd acquired over the years. My culinary journey led me to kitchens like D’ Pietros in Westport, Artisan restaurant in Southport, and The Cottage by Bryan Lewis, a revered figure in Fairfield County's culinary scene.
For the last six years, I had the privilege of serving as the Executive Chef at Pearl at Longshore in Westport and Pinstripes BBB Restaurant in Norwalk, CT. With over 15 years of experience in the restaurant world, I am thrilled to embark on a new chapter in my career and life.
My commitment to culinary excellence remains unwavering, and my mission now is to introduce you to a fusion of classic and modern Italian cuisine with a distinct Hispanic twist. At ILL Pelicano, expect a modern interpretation of timeless Italian dishes, crafted with fresh, top-quality ingredients. We aim to make this your premier destination for exceptional Italian dining.