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The Faena Questionnaire: Francis Mallmann


Our rendition of the Proust Questionnaire is our unique take on the famous parlor game that gained popularity, although it was not originally created, by Marcel Proust, the renowned French essayist and novelist. Proust held the belief that by responding t


Dreaming dreams, no mortal ever dared to dream before. –Edgar Allan Poe

Our master of seven fires, Francis Mallmann, hailing from the Bariloche region of Patagonia, stands as South America’s most celebrated chef. Raised in a household where the essence of cooking revolved around everlasting fires, Mallmann’s childhood kindled a deep fascination for the culinary arts. This early passion led him to pursue formal training in the realm of French cooking. Despite achieving acclaim in the culinary world, Mallmann eventually found himself disenchanted with the world of fine dining. Restlessness drove him back to his origins—cooking with the primal element of fire. He merged French techniques with this elemental approach, intensifying and enriching the flavors and textures of his creations. Embracing simplicity, he often relies on just a handful of ingredients and concise cooking methods.

With Mallmann at its helm, Los Fuegos offers an authentic South American dining experience, complete with an outdoor fire kitchen, rooted in the traditional asado (outdoor barbecues). The fire kitchen has been custom designed by the renowned chef to fuse his many fire-cooking techniques into one extraordinary kitchen, and it is the first of its kind in an urban environment. Mallmann has designed a large, custom-built wood oven, the “piano,” a grand-scale grill of bespoke design that is being crafted in Texas, planchas and hooks from which to hang fish and meat from, as well as a section dedicated solely to cooking in ashes. Additionally, Mallmann has designed special cooking utensils exclusively for the Faena fire kitchen made from materials ranging from copper, wood, and iron to porcelain, marble, and stainless steel.


What is your idea of perfect happiness?

Patagonia (Argentina)

What is your greatest extravagance?

Basmati rice and red cabbage salad

Which living person do you most despise?

Age taught me to silently and calmly, stay away from those feelings

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?

I feel comfortable with whom I am, bad and good.

What or who is the greatest love of your life?


When and where were you happiest?

Every dawn on my own

What is your favorite occupation?


What do you consider the most overrated virtue?

Fake kindness specially when it’s adorned by a smile

On what occasion do you lie?


What do you dislike most about your appearance?

I think my ears are growing 😊

What is it that you most dislike?

The emptiness

If you could choose what to come back as, what would it be?

A pianist

What is your most treasured possession?


What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?

Not understanding your surroundings

Where would you like to live?

At home

What is your most marked characteristic?


What do you most value in your friends?


Who are your favorite writers?

Wystan Hugh Auden and James Joyce (for the last paragraph of ‘Ulysses”, it resumes my life)

Who are your heroes in real life?

The children

What is your greatest fear?

To miss my children

What is your motto?


Which talent would you most like to have?


Which living person do you most admire?

A music composer

What is the trait you most deplore in others?

Fake smile

What is your favorite journey?

Driving with my Chu Loren through Patagonia

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?

‘I’ll think about it’

What is your greatest regret?

Not marrying the city of Paris, I’m too old now.

What is your current state of mind?

In haste for love

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

My silence with the people I love

Who is your favorite hero of fiction?

The Little Prince

If you could change one thing about your family, what would it be?


What do you consider your greatest achievement?

My patience