Chef Mario Medina
Executive Chef, Malaga
Spending many childhood days in the kitchen with his mom in Chihuahua, Mexico, Chef Mario Medina developed a deep passion for food that inspired his journey of one day becoming an executive chef. After serving as a cook in the U.S. Navy, where he rose to the top of his culinary classes, Medina enrolled in The Art Institute of California, Orange Country, where he graduated (with honors) with a degree in Culinary Arts.
Medina began his career as a chef in various restaurants throughout southern California, but he credits his work as Lead Line Cook at Charlie Palmer as the job that propelled his career. “I learned the importance of quality product and technique,” he explains. In 2009, Medina was recruited by a former co-worker to work in the kitchen at The Bazaar by Jose Andres in Beverly Hills, California. In October 2010, Medina moved to Las Vegas to open Jaleo by Jose Andres with a promotion to Sous Chef. While living in Las Vegas, Medina had the opportunity to work with renowned chefs like Huber Keller, Michael Mina, and Gordon Ramsay.
In August 2012, Medina followed his dream of living in Austin by accepting the Sous Chef position at Shawn Cirkiel’s Parkside. Cirkiel then recruited Medina to join the team at Chavez as Chef de Cuisine for the restaurant’s launch in October 2013. After just over a year at Chavez, Chef Medina accepted the Executive Chef position at Malaga with the opportunity to create an entirely new menu full of his own inspiration, creativity, and attention to detail.