About the Chef
Kenten Marin brings an international flair to Kenten's S.M.A. that marries well with the foods of roots that stretch from the Southern U.S. to Latin America – and the many cultures that have intertwined with them. Marin was born in Green Bay, Wisconsin and moved to Peru at age one-and-a-half and grew up with his grandparents. “From the time I was age five, I would cook with my grandma, who always told me I would work in the kitchen, but I thought I had ‘better’ plans,” laughs Marin.
Before leaving Peru at age 18, turned down a job offer from Peruvian chef and ambassador of Peruvian cuisine, Gaston Acurio, to work at his restaurant Astrid & Gaston. After going to school and completing multiple degrees, Marin decided to go to culinary school and discovered it was his true passion. His grandmother was right!
Marin received an Associate in Arts, Culinary Arts from The Art Institute of Houston, a certificate from the French Culinary Institute in New York City, and completed an internship at Mugaritz in Errenteria, Spain in May 2012. His varied work experience includes kitchens in Lima, Peru, and Tokyo, and notable Houston restaurants including Underbelly, Brasserie 19, Stella Sola, Plonk and Holley’s Seafood.
To say he has “cooked” the globe would be accurate!
Almost two years ago, Kenten moved from Houston to San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, with a job offering to open the kitchen at Hotel Amparo, where he was part of the team of a small luxury hotel that took first place in Mexico and second in the world according to Travel & Leisure magazine 2020.
He is now Executive Chef and Owner of Kenten's S.M.A.
Marin’s culinary philosophy is, "dishes are not finished until they return to the dish pit empty".
In his free time, the chef enjoys the outdoors, traveling, music, and (of course) eating.