Q&A: Ambar’s Carlos Larrea

From 50 Best Restaurants 2017: Interviews with the front of the house

Ambar Carlos Larrea
Photo by Rey Lopez

Age: 19

Title: Food runner; training to be a server and barista at Baba, Ambar’s sister concept, a coffee shop by day and cocktail bar at night located in the basement.

Favorite dish: Grilled pork neck sandwich on the brunch menu.

Career goals: “I’d like to make some money and open a bar of my own in my country.”
Larrea was born in Ecuador, lived in the U.S. during elementary school, moved back to Ecuador and then returned to Virginia after high school. It was then that his dad cut his hair into a Mohawk. “I got out of school and wanted to try a new me.”

On holding hot plates: “You get used to it. You become stronger.”
And when there’s a customer in the way, “I just resist it. I give them their time, say ‘excuse me’ maybe, but I never complain.”

[Related: Ambar Review]

(50 Best Restaurants 2017November 2017)