Chef Jomar Rios Berly recently joined SeaWorld Orlando as their new executive chef. Born in Puerto Rico, Chef Rios Berly has a long history stemming from his work in Miami at restaurants and hotels. He recently spoke with us about his background and experiences as well as future plans for food and beverage at SeaWorld Orlando.
Ricky Ly, Tasty Chomps: What is your inspiration for becoming a chef?
Chef Jomar Rios Berly: My inspiration comes from a young age, when I started cooking with my grandmother, in addition to this I discovered a career that I never stop learning and being able to transmit happiness through food and impact and help the lives of many people in a positive way.
What are your favorite food memories growing up?
One of my memories since I was little is picking fresh ingredients to cook at home, I remember picking cilantro directly from the ground and combining it with a good stew or simply making a sauce.
What are some favorite lessons you learned that helped you become the chef you are today?
I always learned from anyone, no matter the position or age and race. I worked with good chefs as well as with very bad chefs and this helped me develop and be the humble person I am today, I have always liked helping others and being a mentor, motivate and help people reach their next level .
Favorite dishes at Seaworld right now?
I don’t have a specific dish since I like that we are changing recipes and in each event we come with different things and a different flavor from the others, but I always like to put a little bit of my story in each recipe or dish that I make
Upcoming plans for Seaworld for food and beverage?
Seven Seas next year we’re coming with new recipes since this is the biggest F&B event at SeaWorld and maintain the reputation we have but beyond that my goal is to exceed expectations and do memorable things for each guest who visits us.
Favorite comfort food to make at home?
One of my favorite comfort food is when the Christmas season comes and I can mention several options from this: Arroz con gandules and Roasted Pork, Pasteles de Yuca (this is something similar to tamales but in Puerto Rico we use yuca or plantain and we wrapped in banana leaf), and Pumpkin Flan!
Thank you Chef!