Samba Grille is full of surprises lately. First, they changed their churrasco-focused menu to a la carte and now they've parted ways with chef Cesar Rodriguez. In his place, they've promoted former sous chef David Guerrero to head up the kitchen.
What's really intriguing about chef Guerrero, other than his previous job as head saucier at Philippe Restaurant + Lounge and his South American roots is his recent struggle with paralysis from a brain tumor that affected his sense of taste. Here's more details on his recent illness.
In 2010, Guerrero was diagnosed with a brain tumor on his right frontal lobe and underwent surgery, which left him partially paralyzed on his left facial extremity, and suffering from seizures. He had to undergo extensive therapy to regain sensation to his taste buds, which he still struggles with today.
“As a result of the paralysis, I basically had to learn “tastes” all over again, which for a chef is very difficult as you can imagine,” said Guerrero. “This process has really enhanced my understanding of flavors and how they work together, which I think makes me a better chef.”
In addition to new executive chef David Guerrero, Samba Grille has added new dessert menu from "newcomer" Alejandro Bremont. Some of the new desserts include a milk and coconut custard natilla; Ecuadorean sweet empanadas; and cake roll, with sweet goat cheese pionona.