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Chef Alex Garcia

A Cuban native, Garcia's family taught him to appreciate the simplicity of ingredients and the power of conviviality centered around the table. After graduating from the Culinary Institute of America, Garcia worked alongside Chef Douglas Rodriguez at the inventive Yuca restaurant in Miami. Committed to expanding the reach of Nuevo Latino cuisine, the two chefs opened Patria in New York City in 1994. Rave reviews, including three stars from The New York Times, followed.

In 1998, Garcia opened Erizo Latino, a 65 seat Latin seafood restaurant, in Soho. When the opportunity to open a 150-seat Latino restaurant on the Upper West Side became available, Garcia jumped at the chance to launch Calle Ocho. The always popular location has been going strong for thirteen years. With both restaurants, the local and national media were impressed thus establishing Garcia as a culinary leader of Latin America cuisine in New York.

Garcia's engaging TV guest appearances ultimately landed him a regular series, "Melting Pot" on the Food Network. Soon after, Garcia wrote In a Cuban Kitchen, which was published by Running Press, and was designed to broaden an appreciation of the country through its unique blend of flavors and cooking techniques.

From leading the kitchens of Patria, Erizo Latino, Calle Ocho, Barrio, and MAMBO Catering to hosting "The Melting Pot" on the Food Network, this chef, restaurateur, TV personality and author has dedicated his career to the education and celebration of Latin culture specifically through its cuisine.

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