Born in Peru, Virgilio Martinez has taken London’s culinary scene by storm as Executive Chef at LIMA. The restaurant represents Peru’s recent gastronomic expansion and showcases it with authentic, seasonal and fresh produce, encompassing Peruvian flavours and ingredients in a clean and contemporary style.
Chef Virgilio completed his diploma at Le Cordon Bleu in 1998 and travelled the world to experience the diverse range of cuisines in countries such as France, Italy, South East Asia and New York from within the kitchen. He returned to Peru as Executive Chef of Gaston Acurio’s restaurant Astrid y Gaston and became responsible for the restaurant’s openings in Madrid and Bogota, paving the way for Peruvian cuisine in Spain and Europe.
Upon returning to Lima he opened his own restaurant Central, inspired by the Peruvian Andes, the abundant Amazon and the trends of the Pacific coastline. Chef Martinez focused on using fresh produce with clean, contemporary design so that his dishes encompass the country's nature and boast its abundance of ingredients. The restaurant made its way up the list of The World’s 50 Best Restaurants, and is currently number 1 in Latin America's 50 Best, and number 4 in the world.
In 2012, Virgilio returned to London to open LIMA in partnership with the Gonzalez brothers, which aims to showcase Lima to the world as the gastronomic capital of the Americas. Within 14 months of opening LIMA won its first Michelin star.
Describe your culinary philosophy in 5 words
Sensibility, passion, comitment, connection, exploration, unknown
What is your aim?
Share whats happening in this blessed territory,
What is your greatest inspiration?
What three things would you take to a desert island?
Two knifes and an empty book with thousands of papers,
- #1 | Central | Latin America's 50 Best Restaurants, 2015
- #1 | Central | Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants, 2014
- #4 | Central | The World's 50 Best Restaurants, 2015
- #15 | Central | The World's 50 Best Restaurants, 2014
- 1 Michelin Star | LIMA
- 'Best New Restaurant' | LIMA | Craft Guild of Chefs Awards
- 'Best New Latin American Restaurant' | LIMA | Time Out Eating & Drinking Awards
- 'One to Watch' | LIMA | National Restaurants Awards
Ca. Santa Isabel 376
(511) 242 8515
31 Rathbone Place
+44 203 002 2640