Josef opened Bäco Mercat in 2011, a concept he developed over several years (the Bäco originally was an off-the-menu, late-night snack for staff and friends).
Josef's career started in New York, where he worked at Daniel, La Côte Basque, and Les Célébrités. He also was executive chef at Meson G and Opus in Los Angeles and previously chef de cuisine at Manresa in Los Gatos, Calif. Josef and Bäco Mercat have been featured in the L.A. Times, the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Food & Wine, and Bon Appetit. He also has been nominated for a James Beard award.
DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS
As a native New Orleanian, Genevieve Hardison grew up in a city that lives to eat. She has carried that passion for food with her always. She has worked in all facets of the restaurant industry from New Orleans to New York and, most recenty, Los Angeles. She is thrilled to be a part of such a vital and creative team.
EXECUTIVE CHEF DE CUISINE
Andy Villaluna was born and raised in Southern California and attended Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Institute in Pasadena. After graduating, he worked at Boa Santa Monica, where he worked his way up the kitchen ranks to become chef de cuisine. In 2010, he worked alongside Josef as sous chef at the Lazy Ox Canteen. After a tenure at Manhattan Beach Post, Andy rejoined Josef to open Bäco Mercat.
EXECUTIVE SOUS CHEF
Anna Lagura was born in the Philippines and grew up in the Bay Area. She graduated from culinary school in Pasadena, but her greatest cooking influences come from her mother. Anna started working with Josef Centeno at the Lazy Ox Canteen and later joined the Bäco Mercat family.