Chef Mario Huante

Executive Chef, Owner

Chef Mario Huante began his culinary career washing dishes, when he was about 14, in a small restaurant in Burlington, Vermont where he was born and raised. After the thrill of moving up from dishwasher to “putting the sauce on the spaghetti” wore off, Chef Mario went to Culinary school at both Johnson and Wales in Providence, RI and finished his school education at the New England Culinary Institute in Essex, VT in 1989.

His initial career took him from Vermont, to Rhode Island, and then on to Florida where he worked as a Banquet Chef and Supervisor. Eventually, he made his way to North Carolina where, after working for an upscale catering company, he had an “entrepreneurial seizure” and began his personal chef career in 1998.

He began just as most traditional personal chefs do: he brought all of his pots and pans to his clients homes where he would prepare their weekly meals (always from scratch), fill up their refrigerators with his freshly prepared fare, and then depart. As demand for his services grew, it just became impossible to cook ‘in-home’ for everyone he needed to cook for and in September 2002, he moved into a commercial kitchen in the lower level of a historic home in Cary, NC and became the only personal chef service to deliver meals directly to their clients. As demand grew greater still, he moved into a larger commercial kitchen just off Lake Boone Trail and the beltline, down the street from Rex Hospital where we now operate a full service Catering Business as well as Personal Chef Service since approximately August of 2005 and Chef Mario’s Inc as you know it now was born.

Chef Mario has always had a deep desire to help people maintain a healthy lifestyle through cooking and has since specialized in “Healthy Familiar Cuisine”, which puts a healthy twist on old, familiar favorites while employing a ‘One Ingredient Approach’ to all of his cooking .

“I just wanted to say that [Chef] Mario’s meals are so flavorful and delicious, each and every one and I love his kale! I’m so happy I found this service! Thank you,”
Cher

Personal Chef Client, Raleigh

Holly Hopkins

General Manager

Holly has been with us since 2016 and has seen Chef Mario’s through some big changes in her short time here! The world of Catering and Personal Chef has really changed over the years and Holly helps us keep ‘rolling with the times.’

You can find Holly spending time in the kitchen baking up a storm as our on-staff Pastry Chef or making deliveries so she can have face-time with our clients or ringing up cafe clients or at her desk working on menus, correspondence, inquiries, and all the other details that go into making a business run smoothly.

Holly has years of hands-on training in all aspects of management, customer service, baking, cooking, and over-all kitchen work. She works diligently to be sure that Chef Mario’s keeps moving along making our clients happy with delicious food and on-point Customer Service. While she may be over-booked with work, she will never miss an opportunity to smile and say ‘Hi’!