Tune in or Stream August 7
The history of Haitian immigration to Miami is deep and layered. Food serves as a way for the community to celebrate together and helps educate the region about its culture. From the tropical, tangy soursop ice cream and the spicy, nutty mamba spread to soupe joumou and deep-fried pate korde, Marcus eats his way through Haiti’s culinary classics while embracing the detailed history — and music and art — of Haitians in the city of Miami.
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Marc Baptiste’s career began just after he graduated from New York Technical College with a BA in graphic design and advertising, when he was invited to shoot collections in Paris and New York. Since the early aughts, the New York-based photographer has shot portraits for public figures including Pharrell Williams, Barack Obama, Solange, Sofia Vergara, Lupita Nyong’o, and Janelle Monae. Additionally, Baptiste’s career has included promo shoots for HBO, spreads for Vanity Fair and Marie Claire, and covers for Elle magazine. Born in Port Au Prince, Haiti, and a Brooklyn, New York, local since the age of 9, Baptiste says his love for Haiti is in all his work.
On a trip to Miami when he was in his teens, Serge Toussaint hid from his family to avoid having to take the bus back to their home in Queens, New York. On that trip Toussaint painted a mural for his uncle’s fabric store, and immediately found what he wanted to do for the rest of his life. Today, Toussaint’s murals can be found all over Miami-Dade County, but the muralist and sign artist is most known and beloved around Miami’s Little Haiti. Toussaint, who grew up in Haiti until he was 12 years old, is perhaps most proud of his Barack Obama and Martin Luther King Jr. murals.
Cynthia “Chef Thia” Verna moved to the United States from Pétion-Ville, Haiti, when she was 21. In Haiti, Verna grew up in a well-to-do family, studied under local chef Reginald Koury, and even opened her own restaurant at 17 years old. Verna enrolled in Miami’s Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Institute as soon as she arrived in the Magic City, leaving behind a job at now-shuttered Club Med along the Haitian Riviera. After graduation, Verna found herself in a residency with the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company. Today, she owns a private catering service out of Miami called Chef Thia’s Cuisine.
Where Marcus Visited in Miami
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Meet Marcus Samuelsson
Marcus Samuelsson is the acclaimed chef behind Red Rooster Harlem, Ginny’s Supper Club, Marcus at the Hamilton Princess & Beach Club in Bermuda, Norda Bar & Grill in Gothenburg, Sweden, and in 2017, Red Rooster Shoreditch in London and Marcus B&P in Newark. He has thrilled the food scene with a blend of culture and artistic excellence, first catching the attention of the culinary world at Aquavit. During his tenure as executive chef there, he received an impressive three-star rating from The New York Times, the youngest person ever to receive such an accolade. Continue Reading