Richard G. Garcia, Military Chef To Civilian Chef
Joining the U.S. Marine Corps. One would picture fighting in the trenches and being surrounded by the sights and sounds that too many of our young men and women are surrounded with these days. But not me. I walked into the recruiting office in 1998 knowing I wanted to be not only a Marine but a 3381, food service specialist.
Ever since I was a young boy, cooking was a passion. All chefs say their passion is food, but my passion went beyond that, food was the building block that led to my love of creating, tasting, visualizing, and the service that I want to provide my guests that enjoy my food. The military was the last place that one would think to look for a talented young Chef. However, the basic culinary skills that I acquired at the U.S. Army food Service school in Ft. Lee Virginia were skills that propelled me to where I am today and where I plan to take my future.
Pictures (L to R) Lance Corporal Yosbel Millares, Rich Garcia today (right), Staff Sgt. Jesus Camacho
My mind was already trained to adapt and overcome to any situation, to lead when need by and to follow orders or it could be your life. Aside from the loss of life, I find that the Kitchen is much like a battlefield, and the rank structure in many kitchens reflect the military style of the chain of command procedures. Therefore, with all this in place I could really focus on learning the advanced culinary skills I have in place and the open mind to know that the learning will never end no matter how high in the chain of command I may reach.
Born in Central America to my American mother and Guatemalan father I have traveled the Latin American culinary scene, I lived in Miami, FL. Where the Caribbean influences I picked up have taken my culinary mind to places one dreams of being. In addition, growing up the majority of my life in Boston MA, well let us just say my palette is stretched a lot further than most at my age of 25. The cuisine that I am so precisely trying to master is one that I believe will bring many flavors of the world to where I choose to be.
Today I am currently the Sous Chef of the Hatherly Country Club.. I have worked with great Chefs like David Cardell, from Boston's Caliterra, I was the sous chef for Bluewater where I got to experience the freshest seafood in the Northeast, I was really able to create and my food was tested and approved in the extremely hard to please Marshfield MA.
I am now ready to start my journey on my own. Itching to break out from the shadows of the great chefs that have taught and continue to teach me. I am aware though that discipline and patience will pay off in my future. My time to be in command will soon come, and the world will experience my cuisine. I will remain a humble culinary soldier until this day comes, and when it does, I only hope that my hard work and unique training style pays off.