Up and Coming Chefs

As wonderful as the chefs in PR are now, there will some wonderful new ones soon!

Chef Felipe González is heading up the new Culinary Arts Certificate Program at the University of Puerto Rico, Carolina. Chef Felipe got his BA in Hotel and Restaurant Administration at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, Mass.; an Associate’s degree in Culinary Arts from Johnson & Wales University in Providence, Rhode Island.  He has worked with Emeril Lagasse in New Orleans at NOLA’s Restaurant, and learned Indian cuisine to work as chef de cuisine at Tantra Restaurant in Old San Juan.

When Felipe wanted to learn pastry arts and boulangerie, he learned French and studied at Ecole Gregoire Ferrandi in Paris, also gaining more experience at Potet & Chabot, a Parisian catering business.

The Puerto Rico Hotel & Tourism Association has awarded a scholarship to Chef Felipe to pursue an Executive MBA degree at Universidad Interamericana in Puerto Rico.

Other current scholarships that have been awarded for 2014 include : Christian Castro at Johnson & Wales, for an Associate’s degree in Baking and Pastry; Andrés Lugo to Interamericana for a Master’s Degree in Marketing; Melanie Pabón to Johnson & Wales for an Associate Degree in Baking and Pastry; and Joseph Rosa to Culinary Institute of America for a Bachelor’s Degree in American Food Studies: Farm to Table Cooking.

Friends told me they recently had a lovely dinner at Salt Gastrobar, at the Howard Johnson’s Isla Verde resort. Chef Rene Marichal provides a “multisensory experience” with a comfortable dining room and unique  combinations of food leading the list.They said to be sure to try one of the delicious Himalayan Salt Block Platters: either fillet, scallops or shrimp served on a block of salt.

Salt Gastrobar is open from 10am to 5pm on Sunday; 4pm to 11pm on Monday through Wednesday; and 4pm to midnight on Thursday through Saturday. It’s at Howard Johnson Isla Verde Hotel; 4820 Isla Verde Avenue. Their telephone number is 787-919-7575.

Remember, make somebody happy; make reservations for dinner!

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