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Wednesday, September 27, 2023


Chilean chef to exhibit skills

Chef Vittorio Torricelli will blend fresh herbs, cilantro and chili to share a couple of Chile’s best dishes with students today at Oberholtzer Hall’s residential restaurant.

Through Aramark’s International Guest Chef Exchange, Torricelli, a native of Santiago, Chile, will exhibit the skills he learned from his ancestors and the ideals of cooking they honed prior to the advancement of technology. Torricelli plans to prepare his culture’s appetizing baked pino turnover, baked vegetable turnover and flank steak marinated in a Chilean sauce called pebre.

"My famous dish is called Pulnay. It is a dish made up of a variety of seafood, chili, potatoes and sausages," Torricelli said through a translator.

Torricelli was born into a family with six brothers and sisters, and two of his siblings also became chefs. To nurture his passion for cooking, Torricelli studied at Incat, a technical school in Santiago, Chile.

"I was born to cook because my father was a cook, and my Italian heritage allowed for me to grow up in an environment that loved food," Torricelli said.

The International Guest Chef Exchange Program is designed exchange culinary ideas through the chefs and allow them to share tips from around the world. In total, there are 26 International Guest Chefs participating in the program. Thirteen are from the U.S. and another 13 represent U.K., Ireland, Belgium, Germany, Spain, Mexico, Chile, Japan, Korea and China.

"Mission one for Aramark is to be the best team and work together as one team across all business units, domestic and internationally," said Food and Beverage Director Demetre Souras.

The program has divided the U.S. into eight different regions, each with a corresponding corporate office. Chef demonstrations are spearheaded from the corporate office which want to interact with chefs from all across the world. In the previous year, Southern Methodist University hosted the International Chef Exchange event in the South region.

Chefs from Scotland, Chile, and Mexico will tour the U.S. for two weeks in early October. The representative chef from Scotland will visit the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and Eastern region, the chef from Mexico will visit the West and Midwest regioin, and Torricelli will visit the South, Southeast and Southwest region.

Souras said the demonstration will allow Hotel and Restaurant Management students to broaden their career perspectives and that it will emphasize the importance of a degree in hospitality.

"It shows the students the potential to grow in the United States or internationally if they desire to; it excites the students to see the possibilities. They have to see someone, where he is coming from, how he can grow internationally and grow in that direction," Souras said.

Torricelli joined the Chilean chapter of Les Toques Blanches, a chef’s association, this year. In addition to serving many Chilean government ministers, he has also participated in many culinary competitions. In 2000 and 2001, he placed third in a Chilean culinary competition and second in 2002. Torricelli will also cook from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday at the Moody Towers residential restaurant.

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