ICA: Garces vs. Medina
After a week off for the Super Bowl, ICA is back with another new episode. This week Mexico City native Julian Medina enters Kitchen Stadium to challenge the master of Latin food, Iron Chef Jose Garces.
Chef Julian Medina first learned to cook alongside his father and grandfather while growing up in Mexico City. When he was 17 he apprenticed at Chef Alejandro Heredia’s Hacienda de los Morales. But two years later he followed his growing interest in French cuisine to Les Célébrités, one of the most famous French resutaurants in Mexico. It took him just three years to rise to sous chef.
In the mid-nineties he came to the attention of fellow Mexico City native Richard Sandoval who was just starting to build his empire of 17 restaurants in four countries. Sandoval liked what he saw in the young chef and shipped him off to New York to be the Chef de Cuisine at Maya.
While working in the Big Apple, Medina earned his culinary degree at the French Culinary Institute. Having mastered both Mexican and French cuisine Medina ventured into Asian fusion as the executive chef as SushiSamba, a NYC eatery blending Japanese and South American flavors. Medina moved to Miami to open SushiSamba7 before returning to Sandoval’s employ as a corporate chef developing menus for several restaurants.
Today Medina has his own growing restaurant empire with Toloache (Maiden Lane and also W. 50th St.) and Yerbabuena (23 Ave. as well as Perry St.). Chef Julian brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to Kitchen Stadium but will it be enough against Iron Chef Garces? We shall see.
Judges for Battle: Mexican Chocolate were John O’Hurley, Karine Bakhoum, Michael and Rick Mast. This makes the fifth time some form of chocolate was the secret ingredient.
Click HERE for the outcome.
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