Gino's Olde Marco Trattoria
Gino’s Olde Marco Trattoria
1095 Bald Eagle Drive, Marco Island. Phone: 389-4368.
Summer Hours: 5 to 9 p.m.; Tuesday through Sunday; closed Monday.
Began working at present restaurant?
In December, four years ago.
What is it about food that made you decide to cook for a living?
It’s my passion. I love to combine various foods and create something beautiful that also tastes good.
What was your first restaurant job?
Here at Gino’s. I’m from Guatemala and came to visit my brother, who works in another restaurant on Marco Island, and I decided to stay.
How long have you been cooking professionally?
What is the most unusual dish you ever cooked?
So far our customers haven’t asked for any unusual items that aren’t on our regular menu or daily specials.
Are you planning changes to your menu for the summer season?
Yes, we’re offering several interesting things on different days this summer besides our daily happy hour 2 for one special from 5 to 6 p.m. On 2 for 2 Tuesdays you can purchase two large one topping pizzas for only $22. We’re also featuring coupon specials for Family Wednesdays with a free meal for children under 12 for each paid adult entrée, and also a Pool Party and Super Sunday specials.
What is the most popular dish on your menu?
Pizza’s are a good seller. Our dough is home-made on premises daily, and hand tossed with choice of classic, signature and specialties toppings. Also, the daily specials I create are very popular with our customers.
What is one food that you’ll never eat? Why?
Meatballs (embarrassed laugh) made with too much garlic — I can cook it but I won’t eat it.
Who would you like to cook a meal for? Why?
My family, especially my mama in Guatemala. I would like to cook a traditional dish — Pepian — it’s a thick, spicy stew made with tomatoes, cumin and sesame paste that’s served with rice.
What is your most essential cooking implement? Why?
Going back to our popular pizza’s it would be our commercial cheese shredder. Can you picture preparing all that cheese on a hand shredder?
What is your favorite TV cooking show?
“Hell’s Kitchen” isn’t on now but I also enjoy watching “Ace of Cakes.”
What would you like to be doing if you weren’t a chef?
Someday, I would like to be a great and famous chef.
What annoys you most in the kitchen?
Our kitchen is tiny and it annoys me when people use the kitchen as a pass-through instead of going through the dining room.
What do you enjoy most about your profession?
The chance to be creative and cook dishes that our customers enjoy eating — I really enjoy making the dishes I create every week for our daily specials.