Francis Mallmann’s Uruguayan Hotel is a Calm Culinary Paradise
Chef Francis Mallmann’s move to Uruguay’s rustic Garzón has transformed the one-time ghost town into a jetset hideaway. In 2004, the acclaimed Latin American culinary talent eschewed the glitz of his 1884 and Los Negros establishments (located in Mendoza and José Ignacio, respectively) to open El Garzón, a boutique hotel and epicurean restaurant. “I always thought it was a horrible little place,” says Mallmann, “but over the years I began to see it had huge potential—it had very nice bones.” Thanks to Mallmann’s thoughtful development, Garzón has caught on among discerning travelers, and the Rothschild family has snapped up property nearby. Photography duo Andrew and Gemma Ingalls were given free rein throughout the luxe guesthouse and kitchen, where the cuisine is distinguished by the Andean technique infiernillo ("little hell")—delicacies are cooked on iron griddles between two wood fires, and often include homemade olive oil and fresh herbs from the on-site garden. With plans to add new suites to the hotel, Mallmann sees El Garzón as a long-term project, one he plans to develop in keeping with the area’s seductively lazy pace.