Raymi, means love and passion...
For many, eating is a time where you share moments of your life with the people you love. Sharing a meal means sharing your love. In the Torres family, food has always been special. And it’s this love of food and family that led two brothers to embark on a journey which would bring them to New York City to eventually become Executive Chefs at Raymi. A venture that has involved the entire family, and has also welcomed new friends into their circle along the way. Even though their backgrounds are as varied as snowflakes, the common thread is a love for Peru. Destiny had plans for these two brothers to unite and bring their varied experiences and knowledge into the creation of a place that pays homage to their common love.
Growing up, Jaime and Felipe, along with their other siblings, were exposed to many gastronomical experiences. One that stands out for them is the time a young Chef came to their house to cook. Armin, the head of the family, met a young man, Virgilio Martinez, working at Astrid & Gaston in Bogota, Colombia. Over the years they developed a good friendship; Armin invited the young Chef into his home to share his culinary gift with the family, and so he became a welcomed guest in the Torres home on a regular basis. Curious, Felipe and Jaime would watch and help Virgilio’s cutting vegetables, stirring pots, and happily performing any other tasks they were asked to do. Soon they became passionate about this vocation. According to the Torres family creating a dish is a form of art. Back then the young chef couldn’t imagine how greatly he was influencing this family with a love for Peruvian food. This young Peruvian-born Chef is now the owner and chef of Central in Lima. At the time he was barely 20 years old, but his talent was clear. The Torres boys loved having him cooking in their home; watching and learning from him, not fully realizing that they were learning from a man who is now one of the most renowned Chefs in the world.
Felipe and Jaime Torres, Executive Chefs
It was around the age of 12 that Felipe Torres decided that he wanted to be a chef. The exposure to culinary arts fostered his creative side, and making a dish and serving it to his family who enjoy food as much as he enjoyed preparing it was very fulfilling. Of course, his family supported his decision, so his career in culinary arts began.
After graduating from New York Institute of Culinary Education and International Culinary Institute, Felipe began a series of stints in New York City, all of them in outstanding restaurants, learning all about how a kitchen runs first hand. These experiences at Eleven Madison Park, Jean George, and Esca, to name a few, ignited a spark: he would love to have his own kitchen to run one day. His enduring commitment to his trade led Felipe down a path that would eventually bring him to Peru.
After spending a few years in Northern Italy to work in a Michelin star restaurant called Il Sole, Felipe began to hear about a new and upcoming cuisine from Peru. Remembering his first inspiration from childhood, his interest peaked, and he set out on an adventure to Peru. Once there, he felt the warmth of the people and how proud they were of this unique cuisine. He knew that this was something he wanted to explore further.
Jaime Torres fell into culinary arts while studying business administration in Colombia. Jaime decided to change his career path to be inside the kitchen just like his brother. Once Jaime found out about Felipe’s trip to Peru, he too decided to explore this unique cuisine as well. Now both Torres boys were making their way through the culinary scene: Jaime managed his way inside the kitchen of Astrid & Gaston in Madrid; Felipe did the same in Peru. It was then that Jaime decided to complement the business side of his studies with his culinary and hospitality knowledge.
As his desire for learning about gastronomy grew, he took up studying in many places around the world including New York City’s Institute of Culinary Education and Instituto de Formación Empresarial de la Cámara de Comercio e Industria de Madrid, where additionally he learned the administration side of the culinary business. With his interest in Peruvian cuisine peaked from his time spent in in Astrid & Gaston in Madrid, Jaime flew to Peru and worked with many great chefs in Astrid & Gaston and La Mar in preparation for his next opportunity. This opportunity arose at Raymi, where new, creative, and passionate Chefs were needed to help build the menu and the concept in order to create New York City’s best Peruvian Restaurant.
Now Co-Executive chefs at Raymi, the two brothers, Jaime and Felipe, are developing with the bio-diverse cuisine of Peru which is on the cusp of a gastronomic revolution. “It is amazing to be part of the growth of this cuisine and truly create and expose others to the native food from Peru.”
Bienvenidos a nuestra casa y buen provecho!