If the name Mario Malváez sounds familiar, it’s because he’s been a stalwart of Mexican food in Singapore since 2012, being the head chef of the ever-popular Lucha Loco and Super Loco joints. Born and bred in Mexico, Mario’s stayed close to his roots, joining the F&B industry in 1998 and going on to open several businesses back home. He also spent some time working in kitchens around the world, joining a cruise company for nine months to travel around the globe and learning more about different cuisines. Along the way, he’s also spent some time in famed restaurants like Gaggan in Thailand and Central in Peru. As such, Mario draws influences from all over the world, but remains pure to the cuisine closest to his heart, which is why we’re excited to host him for the next instalment of Cooking Beats—Raíces on Thursday, 27th April. We find out a little more about him ahead of his session in the kitchen.
How did you get interested in food/cooking?
My parents worked hard to raise my two brothers and me. Mom and Dad would always try to give us the best: sometimes they would bring us to restaurants or street food stalls to discover a new universe of food. During the holidays, we would travel from the mountains to the beach and eat local produce. Sometimes we’d even camp and cook our own food! In Mexico, my folks would take us to local markets with lots of small street food stalls. On special occasions, they would take us to Spanish, Italian, or Japanese restaurants. There is a really interesting mix of culture and immigrants that mesh very well with our flavours. All this slowly created a very strong connection with the new flavours, colours, and aromas that marked my life since I was young.