Marc Leandro has been a Manhattan private chef since 2006, and began his career in San Francisco in 1999, where his first job was to prepare healthy meals and snacks for two young children. Marc’s passion for cooking is rooted in the ethic of local and organic, which he hewed to long before it became a slogan. At farmers’ markets in Newport, Rhode Island, where he grew up, and later in the Bay Area and Normandy, France, Marc learned to source top-quality ingredients, and then transform them into healthful, delicious meals for clients, friends and family, alike. As a co-founder of marc+mark, Marc is sharing his passion for healthful cooking with the families of New York and Los Angeles. Marc is also a new father to twin boys, Max and Otis, and plans to weave this new and exciting experience into the marc+mark repertoire.
Mark Boquist’s extensive experience in the kitchen has left him with refined instincts that elevate the best ingredients into delicious, nutritious food. Mark’s private chef career began when he was hired to make healthy, tasty baby food for a client, whom he stayed with for years. From farms to gourmet prepared food to restaurants and bespoke catering, Mark’s varied culinary education drove him to always bring a balance of practicality, creativity and nutrition to every family he works with. His love of kids and healthful living inspired his decision to co-found marc+mark.
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Mimi Wlodarczyk is a 2006 graduate of the French Culinary Institute, and has studied nutrition and the healing properties of foods for many years. She’s been a rock & roll tour chef, a private chef, and a caterer, with a specialization in alternative health-supportive diets, such a gluten-free, Kosher, paleo, vegetarian, and vegan. Mimi especially enjoys working with children who have special dietary needs, and cooks in ways that kids always enjoy, and parents can feel good about. Mimi is multi-lingual and, in addition to English, she speaks Polish, French, and German. Mimi is a deeply knowledgable addition to the team, and her dedication and passion for healthful cooking are right at home with marc+mark.
Laura Rodriguez is a 2004 graduate of the French Culinary Institute, and has honed her skills at Manhattan’s Little Giant, The Redhead, and at Locavore on Shelter Island. For seven winters Laura served as head chef at the Zamas Hotel in Tulum, Mexico. She has recently served as a culinary consultant, and a private chef, with the aim of providing wholesome and healthy meals made from the finest and freshest ingredients. Laura is also mom to 8-month old Luna who, although she has just started eating solid foods, is already benefitting from mom’s focus on palate-expanding treats that appeal to babies’ love for new tastes and textures. Laura is bilingual and, in addition to English, she speaks fluent Spanish. Laura’s varied experience and attitude and energy make her a great addition to the marc+mark consulting team.
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Cristina Topham brings 15 years of experience in restaurants, recipe development and work as a private chef. She was inspired to cook at the age of 8, when she became engrossed by the programs of Julia Child. She had the opportunity to meet and cook for Julia in 2001 at her only namesake restaurant inside Copia: The American Center for Food, Wine and Art in Napa Valley. Cristina continues to be inspired by Julia’s love of life and cooking daily. She has cooked her way around the world by land, air and sea, in far-flung locales like Sweden, Croatia, and the French and Italian Rivieras. Cristina is committed to working with local, organic, seasonal and sustainable ingredients including meat, fish, dairy and produce and has sourced organic and bio-dynamic purveyors throughout Southern California. Raised in a Lebanese family, her Mediterranean roots come through in her cooking style. She’s also inspired by the cuisines of Morocco, India and Thailand and is experienced in vegetarian, vegan, spa and macrobiotic cooking.
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Mia Morgenstern is a private chef based on the San Francisco peninsula. Her culinary background is as varied as her palate, with experience ranging from work in the kitchen at Chez Panisse, to managing a team of chefs for a Silicon Valley food/tech startup, to appearing on a network television reality cooking competition (The Taste, Season 1), to running her own small catering and events business. A New England native, Mia is nonetheless fully committed to the ethos of California cuisine, shopping all of the local farmers markets for the freshest, most delicious produce available. Mia has a deep love for eating, cooking, and learning about ethnic cuisines, and often infuses her local finds with flavors from India, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia. Above all, her culinary passion lies in providing wholesome and delicious food to all – regardless of age, preferences, or dietary restrictions. Mia’s breadth of experience and abundant talent are a great addition to the marc+mark team.
Tiffany Friedman is a New Yorker by birth, but a Californian through and through. Growing up in her family’s Manhattan restaurants provided Tiffany a bird’s eye view about what works in the kitchen, and from that foundation Tiffany forged her own culinary education, working in Lake Tahoe, Sonoma, and the San Francisco Bay Area. As a private chef Tiffany brings families together, and gives them an opportunity for them to relish each other’s company while savoring home-cooked meals Tiffany has always loved the unique rewards of cooking for children, and is lucky to have a willing tester in her daughter, Phoenix. Tiffany’s experience and passion for family cooking are valued addition to the marc+mark team.