Carmel Magazine

Holiday 2017

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Owner David Fink Executive Chef Aaron Rayor t's easy to see why Aaron Rayor followed a deployment with the U.S. Marines with a career as a chef. His belief in "esprit de corps" (spirit of a unit) implies devotion, loyalty and a deep regard for tradi- tion—convictions of every great chef. Rayor took over the kitchen at Carmel's standout Cantinetta Luca in mid- 2017, fresh off a forged-in-the-fire stint at Bestia, one of the hottest restaurants in Los Angeles. Bestia specializes in creative, regional Italian comfor t food—the perfect training ground for everything fresh Cantinetta Luca. Rayor's tour of duty through Afghanistan and Africa really taught him the basics. "You definitely learn discipline," Rayor says. "and how to work with people." When he left the military, he joined the CIA—the one without the intrigue. Trained at the Culinary Institute of America, Rayor served an externship at acclaimed sustainable restau- rant Blue Hill at Stone Barns in New York. An exper t in charcuterie and someone who, according to Luca owner David Fink, "lives and breathes Italian food," Rayor has all the chops. And for that we can all cry, "Oorah!" —Larry Harland I Photos: Kelli Uldall 170 C A R M E L M A G A Z I N E • H O L I D A Y 2 0 1 7 Veal Tongue Crostini, Tonnato, Pickled Shallots, Arugula and Parmesan Dolores between Ocean and 7th Carmel • 831/625-6500 good taste Dolores between Ocean and 7th Dolores between Ocean and 7th Cantinetta Luca

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