At only 34, Jose Garces has established himself a leader in creating modern interpretations of Latin cuisines. His ease at combining various cultures is rooted in his background born and raised in Chicago by Ecuadoran parents.
After graduating from culinary school (where his final project was a traditional-modern tapas restaurant much like Amada) he apprenticed at La Taberna del Alabardero in Marbella, Spain. From there, he went to New York City, working in the elite kitchens of the Four Seasons, The Rainbow Room and Bolivar, before serving under chef Douglas Rodriguez, the oft-cited godfather of Nuevo Latino cuisine, at Chicama and Pipa. Rodriguez chose Garces as his Chef de Cuisine for Alma de Cuba, the Philadelphia restaurant he opened with maverick restaurateur Stephen Starr, who who quickly recognized Garces' talent and promoted him to Executive Chef, not only at Alma de Cuba, but also at El Vez, where Chef Garces created the modern Mexican concept and menu.
He has become a key visionary of the movement to reinterpret classic traditions in ways that are modern and exciting, while still retaining its cultural authenticity. Chef Garces has been featured in New York Times, Bon Appetit, Travel & Leisure, Esquire, Food & Wine and Conde Nast Traveler, among many other publications.
Books:The Latin Road Home, October 2012
Latin Evolution, October 2008