Since she’s been cooking professionally, Lorena Garcia has been focused on bringing the flavors of Latin cooking--one of the great cuisines of the world –to a wider audience. Her global, fresh and highly flavorful take on Latin Cuisine offers a modern fusion of classic techniques with Latin ingredients. Her life as chef, entrepreneur, cookbook author, media personality, cookware designer and restaurateur has been a celebration of the cooking and passion for food that she grew up with in her native Caracas, Venezuela with the international flavors and culinary techniques she amassed as a young chef working in some of the world’s finest restaurants.
Lorena's newest and most ambitious restaurant project has landed her on the world famous Las Vegas Strip. CHICA at The Venetian is a stunning celebration of Latin American cooking and hospitality showcasing flavors, influences and techniques from Venezuela, Peru, Brazil, Argentina and Mexico combined and reimagined in Lorena’s distinct global style. With Chica, Lorena has joined the ranks of the world class chefs on Restaurant Row at The Venetian including Thomas Keller & Emeril Lagasse –and now her photo proudly lives between them as the first woman chef on the “Wall of Culinary Titans” outside The Venetian.
As one of the country's top celebrity chefs best known for her television roles on Top Chef Masters, America’s Next Great Restaurant, and multiple shows on Telemundo, Lorena has also published two bestselling cookbooks. Though she originally studied to be a lawyer, she realized she had different calling and enrolled in cooking school. She graduated with a Bachelors degree in culinary arts from Johnson & Wales University and recently received an honorary doctorate in culinary arts. She took her first job as an apprentice at the Ritz in Paris, and then worked her way through Italy, Japan, Korea, Thailand, and China amassing an arsenal of classical techniques and hard-core restaurant experience.
In July 2002, Lorena opened her first solo restaurant, Food Café followed by Elements Tierra in Miami’s Design District. In 2011, she moved her restaurants into the airports (currently at MIA, DFW and ATL)--offering travelers Lorena Garcia Cocina, a healthier take on traditional Latin cuisine. Lorena also operates, the Lorena Garcia Culinary Loft in Miami which is available for private events as well as film and television production.
Lorena’s passion and energy land her regularly on television. Fans know her from her appearances on HSN, showcasing her fresh and modern line of cookware with a splash of Latin flair known as the Lorena Bella Kitchen Collection. Along with her appearances on Bravo’s “Top Chef Masters” and “Top Chef All-Stars,” NBC ‘s “The Biggest Loser” and “America’s Next Great Restaurant,” she has also been featured on the CNN special documentary “Latinos in America” and as a guest on such talk programs as The Talk, The Chew and Today. Her recipes have been featured in publications such as People Magazine, Cosmopolitan, Vogue, Saveur, and she has been profiled in business magazines including Kiplinger’s and Entrepreneur.
Chef Lorena always finds time to give back and her “Big Chef, Little Chef” as a comprehensive non-profit program was developed to help children and their families take control of their eating habits and, ultimately, their lives.
You can find her at www.ChefLorenaGarcia.com and follow her on Facebook (LorenaGarciaOnline), Twitter (@LorenaGarcia) and Instagram (@ChefLorena).