Chef Carlos Altamirano
Carlos Altamirano is a name familiar to many in the Bay Area. From his renowned San Francisco neighborhood eatery to a Michelin-star garnering establishment in Half Moon Bay, and to his sought-after fleet of Peruvian food trucks, Carlos Altamirano is a chef whose talents truly span the culinary spectrum. Prior to starting his own culinary empire, Chef Altamirano trained under some of the Bay Area’s most renowned chefs, including Reed Hearon of Rose Pistola and Restaurant Lulu; Bob Helstorm of Grand Café and Kuleto’s; Dave and Ann Gingrass of Hawthorne Lane; and Bradley Ogden of One Market Restaurant.
After honing his skills with these experienced chefs and restaurateurs, Chef Altamirano decided it was time to combine his culinary expertise and his Peruvian roots. It was in January 2004 that Chef Altamirano and his wife Shu Dai opened the doors to their very first Peruvian restaurant, Mochica, on Harrison Street in San Francisco’s SOMA district. The restaurant quickly gained a dedicated following for its authentic yet contemporary take on the Latin American dining experience, and its success saw Mochica expand and move to larger location in Potrero Hill in the fall of 2014. Following Mochica’s success, the Altamirano family opened Piqueos, a popular Peruvian tapas bar, in Bernal Heights in 2007. Then in 2009 they established La Costanera, a contemporary Peruvian restaurant that offered the coastal cuisine of Latin America from a stunning location overlooking the Pacific Ocean north of Half Moon Bay.
The one thing that remains consistent from plate to plate and table to table is the authentic and flavorful nature of his creations. Chef Altamirano was born and raised in the mountainous coastal region of southern Peru. There, he developed an innate appreciation for Latin American culture and cuisine. Over the years, the chef has developed a reputation for creating unforgettable dishes, using innovative techniques and always insisting on cooking with only the finest and freshest ingredients. In 2010, Chef Altamirano founded Alta Farm in Half Moon Bay, a single-acre plot dedicated solely to producing the spicy rocoto variety of pepper, a foundational ingredient of Peruvian cuisine. Previously available only as a frozen import from South America, the rocoto pepper, grown from seeds brought in directly from Peru, is liberally utilized at Parada and all other Altamirano Restaurant Group properties.
Chef Altamirano has established himself as the Bay Area authority on extraordinary Peruvian cuisine. His restaurant in Half Moon Bay, La Costanera, garnered a Michelin star in 2011, 2012 and 2013. The demand for a unique take on traditional Peruvian food has fueled his efforts to open more locations. Look out for new restaurants opening up near you in the coming months.