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Virgilio Martinez

   2017    Art
Virgilio Martínez is the chef/owner of Central, a restaurant in Lima, Peru that currently sits at number four on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list. After a decade spent cooking in kitchens around the world, Martínez only found his true identity as a chef when he began exploring the different regions of his native Peru, from the ocean to the Andes. While some chefs are obsessed with a 'sense of place,' Martínez strives to offer his guests a sense of many places — entire ecosystems over the course of a tasting menu.
Martínez always had an adventurous spirit, but growing up in Peru during the 70s and ‘80s meant that many parts of the country were closed off to him. As a teenager, he learned that pursuing a career in the kitchen would allow him the freedom to travel all over the world. The chef ended in charge of a restaurant in Madrid. This is really where Virgilio started to develop his experimental style. Martínez decided to leave Spain to go and work on opening his own restaurant in Peru. He decided to explore the idea of cooking dishes based on altitudes and ecosystems. Martínez runs Central’s kitchen with his wife, Pia León. They developed the altitude-based menu concept together. Martínez’s sister, Malena, has a science background, so he brought her on as part of the team to explore different terrains in search of ingredients that they could use at the restaurant. Virgilio remarks: 'We use 180 ingredients, and 50 percent of them are unknown.' The altitude-themed tasting menu was introduced in 2012, and the following year, Central landed at the bottom of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list. Two years later, it soared to number four.
Series: Chef's Table

Cooked: Earth

   2016    Culture
All cooking is transformation, and in that sense, it's miraculous, it's alchemy. But of all the different transformations we call cooking, fermentation is the most miraculous and the most mysterious. And that's because it doesn't involve any applied heat at all. Discover how microbes help turn raw ingredients into delicacies like chocolate and cheese as Pollan tackles the mysterious process of fermentation.
Series: Cooked

Did Cooking Make Us Human

   2010    Culture
We are the only species on earth that cooks its food - and we are also the cleverest species on the planet. The question is: do we cook because we're clever and imaginative, or are we clever and imaginative because our ancestors discovered cooking? Horizon examines the evidence that our ancestors' changing diet and their mastery of fire prompted anatomical and neurological changes that resulted in taking us out of the trees and into the kitchen.

Cooked: Fire

   2016    Culture
As he tries his hand at baking, brewing and braising, acclaimed food writer Michael Pollan explores how cooking transforms food and shapes our world. In the first espisode, with help from Aboriginal hunters and a barbecue pit master, Pollan shows how fire shaped human gastronomy, and weighs our duty to the animals we eat.
Series: Cooked

Cooked: Water

   2016    Culture
Michael Pollan looks to the kitchens of India for a lesson in the value of pot cooking and examines the consequences of eating highly processed food.
Series: Cooked
Dinosaur Planet
Dinosaur Planet

   2003    Science
Reel Rock
Reel Rock

   2014    Culture
The Life of Mammals
The Life of Mammals

   2002    Nature
Chased by Sea Monsters
Chased by Sea Monsters

   2003    Science
The Wehrmacht
The Wehrmacht

   2007    History
Catalyst
Catalyst

   2017    Science
Everything and Nothing
Everything and Nothing

   2011    Science
The Story of China
The Story of China

   2016    History