Roberto Los Banos

Jo McGarry
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Friday - January 05, 2011 Share | | podcast Podcast |

Age: 43

Title: Executive Sous Chef, Hilton Hawaiian Village.

Where were you born and raised? Waialua and Pearl City.

What’s your earliest food memory? Grandma making bread and leaving it on the wall outside our Mokuleia beach house to rise. Another great memory is when I used to go spearfishing with my dad at Mokuleia.

First job in the industry? Old Orson’s at Ward Warehouse - my job was to peel 200 pounds of shrimp and clean 100 pounds of calamari eight hours a day.

What prompted you to start cooking? I became a dad right out of high school and needed a job right away, and so I got the job as prep cook at Orson’s.

You’ve seen some changes at Hilton Hawaiian Village in recent years, particularly at Bali, HHV’s signature fine dining restaurant. Yes, when I was the chef at Bali it was more of a Pacific Rim menu. Today it’s evolved and is now a great steak and seafood restaurant. We have a fabulous chef, Brett Villarmia, who brings a new rejuvenation and excitement to Bali.

Favorite dish on the menu there? Rib-eye steak.

Where do you like to eat when not at work? My mom’s house - I really love mom’s cooking

Do you cook at home? Yes, I prefer simple comfort foods, like oxtail soup. I just made loco moco for my boys this morning.

Best dish? My favorite dish at home is oxtail soup.

What’s always in your fridge? Chili pepper water.

Favorite kitchen tool? A multipurpose Chinese cleaver.

Anything about you that might surprise people? People think I have this really strong chef attitude, but I’m actually a softy inside.


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