Norman Van Aken on cookbooks, mental health, and his education in Latin food

This is part 2 of Mike Beltran's sit-down with renowned chef Norman Van Aken. In this portion of the chat, the two talk about Norman's experience publishing books, mental health issues chefs deal with, and the time Norman passed on participating in Top Chef Masters.

Norman Van Aken is one of the most celebrated and consequential chefs in the country. Widely regarded as the founder of new American cuisine and a pioneer of "fusion," Norman has led renowned restaurants, published numerous books, and a nominee for and winner of countless awards, including an induction into James Beard Foundation’s list of “Who’s Who in American Food and Beverage" (where he's the only Floridian chef on the list).

Norman also happens to be among Michael Beltran's mentors. Mike refers to Norman as his "culinary godfather."

Follow Norman Van Aken on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

Listen to Norman's radio series, "A Word on Food."


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Nicolás Antonio Jiménez is the founder of DADE. When he's not working on this site, he's the senior editor of Cigar Snob Magazine, an internationally distributed lifestyle magazine.
Nick is also a Miami native, Cuban-American, and graduate of the Missouri School of Journalism.