CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER / OWNER
Martin Cardenas came to the United States in 1977 and started working as a dishwasher at El Torito Restaurants in California. He spent the next few years opening more than a dozen Mexican restaurants all over the country for this large company. Martin then moved to the hotel industry where he became a banquet chef, then executive chef and later opened a hotel and restaurant in the keys for the same company. After opening and running so many restaurants for others, he decided it was time to do it himself.
Chiles Mexican Restaurant & Cantina was born, in January 1988 and was such a success that he received an offer to sell that he could not refuse. Martin moved to Miami Lakes in 1990 and opened Cancun Grill. While running Cancun Grill, Martin found time to go to Johnson & Wales University, to complete his degree in culinary arts. In 2004, Martin wished to learn about other culinary cultures so he spent time in Italy learning to cook authentic, Italian food. He spent time in Elba, Luca, Pisa, Florence, Bolzano, and Piedmont because he felt this was the only way to really learn about Italian cooking. The result of this sabbatical is Italy Today, a second, unique, and successful restaurant.
Italy Today is also located in Miami Lakes. He also opened a catering company in 2010 called Crazy Fork Catering, also located in Miami Lakes, which has taken off like a rocket. Any day of the week, if you stop by Cancun Grill or Italy Today, you will most likely run into Martin enjoying a meal with anyone of his clients, who he calls friends.