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New Orleans, LA /

Ana Castro was raised in Mexico City by her grandmother. In her grandmother’s kitchen, Ana’s curiosity awoke, not only about food’s sourcing and preparation, but also about the healing properties that a meal cooked with love and passion can bring to those who share a table. Inspired, Ana pursued a formal culinary education and then spread her wings.

She has travelled and cooked around the world, from India to Denmark, New York to New Orleans. Since laying down roots in Louisiana, Ana has worked her way up from line cook to sous chef to executive chef. In 2021, Ana opened Lengua Madre with a desire to express Mexican cuisine through her lived experience. Under her leadership, Lengua Madre was a semifinalist for the 2022 James Beard Foundation’s Best New Restaurant award and was included in both The New York Times’ 2021 “Restaurant List” and also Bon Appetit’s 2022 “50 Best New Restaurants.” She was named one of Food & Wine’s “Best New Chefs” in 2022 and went on to become a 2023 finalist for the James Beard Foundation’s “Best Chef: South.”

Ana is thrilled to start the next chapter of her career with Acamaya as, for the first time, both chef and owner, alongside her best friend and sister Lydia Castro, who will helm the front of the house.