Executive Chef Junior Merino, a pioneer of nouveau mixology and the visionary behind the fusion of culinary and mixology arts, now proudly serves as the Executive Chef & Master Mixologist at M Cantina. With an illustrious career spanning commercial ventures, global partnerships with top spirit brands, renowned restaurants, and international recognition, Chef Merino's name, "The Liquid Chef," stands as a beacon in the mixology world.
Rooted in a multicultural culinary upbringing, Chef Merino's passion for blending diverse flavors ignited at an early age. His journey from baker to beverage manager at Roth's Westside Steakhouse in New York, while concurrently pursuing education and language skills, set the stage for his exceptional career. At just 15, Chef Junior crafted an award-winning wine list and became a member of the Court of Master Sommeliers' Guild of Sommeliers. His inventive cocktails, including the iconic "Coming Up Roses," earned him acclaim.
Establishing "The Liquid Chef" in 2002, Chef Merino's venture initially focused on cocktail consulting and high-end catering but soon expanded into a global mixology empire and culinary sensation. He successfully introduced cocktail programs in diverse settings, from theme parks like Epcot Center to cruise ships and airlines. Collaborations with industry giants like Symrise and NTC Marketing, along with signature cocktails for renowned establishments worldwide, attest to his unparalleled creativity. Chef Merino's portfolio includes collaborations with celebrities like Oprah Winfrey, Justin Timberlake, and Michael J. Fox, as well as recognition from prestigious organizations like Star Chefs and Bartender Magazine.
His dedication to the craft led to the creation of The Liquid Lab, a hub for research and education. From this innovation, Alchemix emerged as the world's premier mobile school of mixology, inspiring bartenders worldwide. As "The Official Ambassador of Gastronomy & Tourism, & Promoter of Mexican Beverages" recognized by the Mexican government, Chef Merino crafted the official cocktail of Mexico, "El Angel."
His commitment to excellence extends to his proprietary product lines, Dainzu and Chef Merino Chef Merino Products, offering a comprehensive range of mixology essentials.
M Cantina, under Chef Merino's guidance, quickly soared to culinary stardom, earning accolades and making its mark as a go-to destination for gourmet-inspired Mexican street food.
An advocate for sharing knowledge and expertise, Chef Merino's contributions have been featured in renowned publications and media outlets worldwide, solidifying his status as a trailblazing figure in the culinary and mixology world.
Join us in savoring Chef Junior Merino's artistry and innovation at M Cantina, where every sip and bite is a testament to his culinary mastery.