Oscar Lopez
I was born in Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico, but was raised in El Paso, Texas. My culinary journey began when I was just 15, washing dishes in the kitchen. Little did I know this would ignite a profound passion.

The long shifts in the kitchen, the chef yelling and throwing dishes, and the intensity of it all gave me character and fueled my ambition to learn, grow, and explore the world through food.

Then, in May 2018, I discovered that my absent father was a chef like me! Even though I had grown up without a father figure, I realized the passion for cooking was in my blood.

As a young cook, or as we call it in my hometown, a “cocinero,” the kitchen taught me valuable good and bad lessons. I was fortunate to start my journey just after the era of molecular fine dining and locally sourced ingredients, exemplified by places like Eleven Madison Park. So I was lucky enough to jump then, always ready to say “YES, CHEF,” regardless of the situation.

My journey led me to New York City, where dreams came true without needing to wake up because reality is just as dreamlike, where every cuisine was within reach. Surrounded by Michelin-star chefs, emerging talents, and badass chefs, I feel like a sponge soaking up knowledge. Amid the chaos and excitement, one thing was clear: to evolve as a chef, I needed to learn, travel, and bring those experiences back with me.

When I started working in a fast-paced fine-dining restaurant, the cooks doubted me because of my origins. I was tasked with the busiest station on the line, sauté, handling hundreds of orders daily. They tried to put me down, but I persevered and proved them wrong.

Looking to the future, I hope to see changes in the culinary industry towards a healthier environment and an outdated kitchen culture.

What is your favorite street food?


Which restaurant or food stand do you recommend? (Different from yours) (Add its Instagram handle if possible)

Taqueria número 1, clay restaunrant in NYC

What is your guilty pleasure?


What ingredient do you find overrated?

Truffle oil

What ingredient do you think is underrated?

Condense milk

What is your favorite kitchen tool?


What is your worst kitchen nightmare?

The staff walking out