Chef Marvin Antonio Torres of Caffé Milano
January 25, 2020
A graduate of Unitec The Global University and Colegio Culinario Sampedro of Honduras, Chef Marvin Antonio Torres of Caffé Milano dedicates his expertise to the refined and punchy flavors of Italian cuisine, much to the delight of Naples diners. He started out cooking for the well-heeled of Miami under the mentorship of Chef Christian Testa of La Gloutonnerie before moving to the west coast and developing the fine dishes that keep local diners returning to Caffé Milano. Keep reading to find out more about Chef Torres and what guests at his restaurant can expect when they sit down to a sumptuous Italian meal.
Q. What is your culinary background?
A. Ten years ago, I began my career as a chef in Miami specializing in Italian food and flavors. I have covered many cultures and flavors and feel that the one thing that separates my food is the personalization of every dish.
Q. What inspired you to become a chef?
A. Everything started when I moved to the United States. It was the beginning of my life. I wanted to be different and customize dishes and flavor profiles. I thank God every day for the opportunities coming to America.
Q. What brought you to Naples?
A. I have travelled all over the world because of my life as a chef. In Miami, the company I worked for gave me the freedom to create and expand and then moved me to Naples.
Q. Your career started in Miami and you made the rounds at hot spots like La Gloutonnerie with Chef Christian Testa, as well as working as executive chef at The Alley and Villa Azur Restaurant & Lounge. How would you describe Miami’s dining culture?
A. My culinary career was molded in the hands of Christian Testa at La Gloutonerie restaurant and I’ve also worked with Laurent Tourondel at The Betsy Hotel. There are many great chefs in many different famous restaurants in Miami. Miami is multi-cultural, a mix of different flavors from around the world like Italian, Latin, Mediterranean, where food is rich in flavor and deep in tradition and heritage.
Q. How does it compare to Naples?
A. The local Naples culinary theory is based on flavor. My style is deeply rooted in Italian traditions, but we combine and tailor the flavors to fit the palate of our guests.
Q. Coming from Miami, did you have to change anything about your own sensibilities to cater to Naples diners?
A. I always give my best. There is no change in the customization of my plates, but our Naples diners’ very good reviews and gracious compliments have encouraged me to raise the bar for the dishes I am now preparing in our kitchen.
Q. Tell us about your signature low-calorie pizza dough, skizza.
A. Skizza is a Caffé Milano specialty; it’s a crispy crust with an emphasis of flavor and unique toppings.
Q. Which dishes are you particularly proud of ?
A. I’m proud when I make everyday dishes spectacular. I try new recipes of everyday menu items to turn them into something new, noteworthy and delicious.
Q. What do you find challenging?
A. My challenge is to elevate my dishes so that diners feel attracted to certain flavors and don’t shy away from others. I hope to emphasize the authenticity of our fresh ingredients, combined with our culinary skills, to make flavors “pop off the plate.”
Q. Who or what are your greatest culinary influences?
A. My dearest influence is Christian Testa; Laurent Tourondel and my best chef is Gordon Ramsay.
Q. What has been one of your favorite culinary experiences?
A. Living and working in Miami defined me as a chef. It’s where I opened new restaurants and developed my cooking style.
Q. What are your favorite culinary resources (books, blogs, etc.)? How do you keep your dishes relevant?
A. Any Gordon Ramsay cookbook. To be an innovator in today’s culinary world, you have to be adventurous and be willing to take on the challenge of perfecting any dish. Any recipe, when well executed, can be a defining moment in a chef’s career.