Fort Lauderdale, FL
James Beard Award-winning chef, Mark Militello, is often credited with putting South Florida on America's culinary map. Militello is recognized for creating contemporary American cuisine that has Italian, Asian and Caribbean influences. At the Atlantic, he is responsible for launching a new signature restaurant in the space presently occupied by Trina in addition to overseeing all culinary operations for the hotel’s poolside café, catering and room service functions.
Militello opened his first restaurant – Mark's Place – in North Miami Beach, Fla., in 1988. It earned rave reviews and just two years later, Food & Wine named him one of the "10 Best Chefs in America." In the ensuing years, he operated four other namesake restaurants in South Florida: Mark's Las Olas in Fort Lauderdale, Mark's Mizner Park in Boca Raton, Mark's South Beach on Miami Beach and Mark's CityPlace in West Palm Beach.
Most recently, Militello created menus for The Office in Delray Beach, Fla., and prior to that was part of the team that opened 1 Bleu at One Resort & Spa in Bal Harbour Village, Fla., formerly known as The Regent Bal Harbour.
Locally, Militello is revered as one of the “Mango Gang” – a group of Miami-area chefs who revolutionized the South Florida dining landscape in the late 1980s with their flavor-forward food sensibility that married modern and classic cooking with chef-driven menus that changed daily and showcased tropical fruit, regional vegetables and fresh local seafood.
A Texan by birth, Militello studied at Marquette University in Milwaukee and earned culinary degrees from both New York State and Florida International universities. In addition to the James Beard Award for "Best Regional Chef" in the Southeast, he received two “Golden Dish” awards from GQ magazine, and a "Distinguished Restaurant Award" from Condé Nast Traveler, among other accolades. Militello and his wife and children and live in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.