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Jun 14, 2012
Last month, we celebrated Mother's Day by honoring a mother/daughter chef team. This month, we're toasting the father/son team of Michael and David Cordúa for Father's Day. Nicaragua-born father Michael is widely seen as a pioneer of South American cuisine in the US. A James Beard Foundation award semi-finalist, the self-taught chef was named one of America's "Top Ten Chefs" by Food & Wine. He's also the only Texas chef to be inducted into Food & Wine's Hall of Fame.
Michael's first restaurant, Churrascos, was the first upscale Latin American-style restaurant in America when it opened in 1988. Esquire magazine called it one of the "Best New Restaurants in America." In 1993, he opened Américas, a high-concept restaurant showcasing the diverse cuisines of North America, Central America, and South America. Esquire named this one "Restaurant of the Year."
Houston-born son David began working as a dishwasher in his father's kitchen when he was 15, where he developed his own love of the culinary world. After earning diplomas in both pastry and cuisine at the famed Cordon Bleu in Paris, David refined his own personal cooking style in restaurants in France (including the two-Michelin-starred La Tour D' Argent) and California. He's now back home in Houston, working with his dad as Executive Chef of their seven award-winning restaurants, which go from high-end dining to family fast food, all with Latin and pan-Latin flavors.
In April, the father and son team went to New York to prepare a special meal at the James Beard House. It was Michael's third time cooking there, David's first. And it's just the latest accolade bestowed on this Character Approved father/son duo.
[Image: Johnny Hanson]