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Chef Marc Quiñones is no stranger to people asking him where his inspiration comes from. He’s been interviewed in Forbes Magazine and Albuquerque Business First, has appeared on a variety of local newscasts, was interviewed for the Colt Balock show, and most notoriously, he’s been on Chopped and Cutthroat Kitchen. All of this has sometimes cast him in the light of “celebrity chef” but Chef Marc is reluctant to say that is who he is. He’s far quicker to say his family and his heritage affect his identity more.

“Being Puerto Rican, I could either do music or food, and food is where my heart is.” These were the ideas he repeated as we spent hours chatting about where he’d come from and why he’d chosen MÁS Tapas y Vino at the Hotel Andaluz in downtown Albuquerque. “I have a great space here: a great room, great support, and great ownership. We can make great food in this restaurant.” That is proven through the many awards Quiñones has received in just the last few years. Most recently, he was selected as an Edible New Mexico Hero for his work with local produce growers and the community, and with a variety of awards displayed throughout his office, it is clear that Quiñones isn’t slowing down. He believes that he is “in the perfect environment to showcase New Mexico’s foods and to incorporate flavors from around the world.”

Quiñones recently competed in New Orleans where he earned third in the nation for his Green Chile Duck Fat Oysters, a dish that has coastal and desert origins. “I’m so proud of this award. I was up against fantastic talent from all over the country, and these flavors came alive for me in this competition.”

Chef Marc is quick to identify the people who have supported him as he’s grown as Executive Chef through several venues in New Mexico, proud to have landed at Andaluz. “Some of these guys have been with me for years, some for more than a decade. I owe them for a lot of my success.” This translates to his attitude toward the guest experience, and his desire to make great food for the guests who travel to downtown Albuquerque, and for those who live here. “It’s never about me, it’s always about the guests.” He recognizes that his competition in Albuquerque and in New Mexico is stiff when it comes to what is available to eat. “Whatever a guest wants, we are going to do our best to make it happen. Serving good food is always an opportunity to make the guest smile.”

Chef Marc has fun playing with his food, and it shows in his seasonal variations on dishes on the MÁS menu. Albuquerque’s Restaurant Week has given Chef Marc a new lease on experimenting with exciting dishes like the Dinosaur Bone-In dinner plate that is truly an undertaking in cooking and eating. Spring will bring some new adventures in food for Quiñones and Andaluz, and we look forward to serving you.

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If you enjoyed reading our post, we recommend you taste the extraordinary dining experience Hotel Andaluz has to offer.

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