Chef Mario Medina – USA

La Jolla, CA, USA

Name: Chef Mario Medina Age: 33 Nationality: Mexican Country of Residence: USA
1. Your Restaurant/Business:
Finch’s Wine Bar & Bistro, La Jolla, San Diego, USA.
2. About Your Kitchen:
Mediterranean with an international touch.
3. Your Favorite Chef Works Item:
The stylish chef coats like the Amalfi Signature Series.
4. First Job:
La Terraza Italian Cuisine in La Jolla, San Diego, USA.
5. Your Favorite Cookbook:
I’ve been featured in San Diego Chef’s Table (Lyons Press 2013) by Maria Desiderata Montana.
6. Your Awards:
Personally, I haven’t won any awards, but with Finch’s we’ve received numerous accolades from the community including Best Wine Bar for three years straight.
7. Your Cooking Inspiration:
I am driven most to create dishes people will enjoy, focusing on the presentation, flavors, and aromas of the dish.
8. Your Speciality Dish:
I make a Cioppino Linguine with a spicy twist from Fresno peppers to an Italian favorite.
9. Favorite Dish To Eat:
Chilean Sea Bass in a pozu marinade with wasabi mashed potatoes.
10. Weirdest Thing You Ever Ate:
Maguey worms. I had them in tacos in Puebla, Mexico. They were delicious.
11. Favorite Ice Cream Flavor:
Mamey Sapote, a common South American fruit.
12. Favorite Drink:
Michelada, a traditional Mexican beer cocktail, with Bohemia lager, tomato juice, and lots of lime.
13. Favorite Wine:
Davis Bynum, 2012 Jane’s Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir.
14. Who Would You Most Like To Cook For:
All of my customers. Hands down.
15. Who Would You Least Like To Cook For:
I actually think it’s always great to cook for others. Everyone has their own preferences, and I enjoy the challenge of meeting their standards.
16. Favorite Things To Do When Not Cooking:
Swimming and playing soccer.
17. Your Latest Project:
Cooking for Cancer. Six chefs, all friends, get together to cook for a good cause, the Healing Foods Kitchen Program at Moore’s Cancer Center here in San Diego.
18. Favorite City and Why:
San Diego. I’ve been here for 18 years and I still can’t get over how beautiful it is.
19. Your Greatest Indulgence:
Buying chef coats!
20. Your All Time Best Culinary Tip:
If you like cooking, love it. Love what you’re making as if you yourself would be eating it.

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