The life of a professional chef is all about experimenting with food, creating new recipes, expressing their creative vision, and crafting memorable experiences for people. Moreover, what sets them apart is their passion, discipline, knowledge, work ethics, and the level of sensitivity that’s on their palate.
This month as the world’s going to celebrate International Chefs Day on October 20th, we caught up with an outstanding Chef Consultant to know what inspired him to follow his passion and the lessons he has learned in the process – Cristian Marino.
Cristian Marino, Italy
Gifted with the right mix of knowledge, interests, skills, and an exemplary spirit, Chef Cristian Marino was born in Milan and raised in Calabria, Southern Italy.
Cristian has been a force in a culinary revolution for years now, but not necessarily in a way that ignites the sweeping movements. Chefs like Gordon Ramsay and Carlo Cracco have influenced thousands of acolytes (and also copycats), but Cristian’s handwork is of a more private and an idiosyncratic strain: He cooks food that’s about Italy and family, history, memory, perfect taste and art, yes, but ultimately his eclectic platings and flavor combinations reflect the miasmic workings of his own mind, especially in a place where he is currently in – Dubai.
“It doesn’t matter how huge your earlier business was, must be aware that you could fail. But you don’t need to be afraid of failure and don’t be afraid of trying again. I think all my life I have bitten off more than I can chew, but somehow I’ve managed to hold it all together. However, I am less complacent that way.”
Cristian is arguably the most well-regarded Chef Consultant, who began his career in Calabria, Italy, where his parents’ used to run a restaurant. Cristian was born in Milan and had spent his life in Calabria, Italy until he was 17. He had pursued his higher education at Hotel Institute Maggia School in Stresa, which is considered the best hospitality school in Northern Italy. After gaining enough experience, he had set out to create a unique mélange of global ingredients and cooking styles in different countries, especially in a country like the United Arab Emirates.
Cristian‘s commitment to cuisine and to the avant-garde has led it to defend the dialogue between the countryside and science, and that’s a total dialogue.
With experience of more than 20 years and in more than 30 different countries, Cristian is now aware of what people from different countries like to eat. He has also worked in Silversea – a 6-star cruise ship as well as in different hotels including Marriott, Intercontinental, and Radisson Blu. Now with his base in Dubai, his plan is to bring a unique blend of experiences globally personalizing and giving his ‘signed’ menu custom made for the specific country and their customers.
And there’s more to know…
“I want to use my skills and knowledge to help standalone restaurants and F&B outlets in hotels. Moreover, I also want to help underperforming venues and help them overcome the losses they made during the pandemic,” told Chef Marino in an interview.
“Moreover, I had also worked in Indonesia just before the pandemic situation. And also I was the preopening Executive Chef for a 4-star and a 5-star hotel and also for the largest ballroom in East Java, Indonesia for the Marriott hotel chain,” added Cristian Marino.
Cristian describes his cooking as “compressing passion into tempting edible bites.” However, it’s much more than that, of course — more like a complicated, and sometimes contentious, conversation with not just the history of Italian cuisine, but also the Italian relationship with food. Cristian does so by re-engineering the perfected recipes that he had learned at his parents’ restaurant. His cooking is both a love letter to his country and an overthrow of the rigidity that can just hold it back.