Diego Munoz, Astrid y Gaston, Lima, Peru

 With Diego in his restaurant Last year I was fortunate to dine twice at Astrid y Gaston in Lima, Peru, recently honored as the top restaurant by Restaurant Magazine’s 50 Best Restaurants of 2013 in Latin America and savor chef Diego’s delectable cuisine. His food is perfection, flawlessly executed and exquisite in detail with a complex…

Elena Arzak, Arzak Restaurant, San Sebastian, Spain

With Elena and Juan Mari Arzak This week I opted out of traveling to the  Madrid Fusion , the annual much hyped international food event that will have its inaugural session  on Monday and have since been getting in touch with friends and chefs I was to meet while there to let them know my…

Andoni Aduriz, Mugaritz, San Sebastian, Spain

I always loved chocolate macarons till I came across the macaron de caza in Chef Aduriz’s kitchen at Mugaritz restaurant in San Sebastian. Six months later in Mexico City at Mesamerica I saw this version of a macaron being fed to unsuspecting audience members invited on stage and watched the reactions when they heard “fresh…

Chef Sebastian Mazzola of 41°, Pakta, and El Bulli

My young friend Sebastian is off on another culinary journey to Mexico, Peru, Denmark and then California for inspiration, rest and to add to his repertoire of stunning plates and flavors. Last time I was in Barcelona with him in October  while he was the creative head of the Ferran and Albert Adria group of…

Virgilio Martinez, Central Restaurante, Peru and Lima, London

Looking back at the last year and my 200 plus dining experiences near and far from my home in California I can say that the one country, the people and the cuisine that has thoroughly captivated me is Peru. I was in Peru twice in a short span of five months and am now contemplating…