Marc Randazzo's Cooking School of Hard Knocks

Categories: Chef Interviews
Photo by Riki Altman
Marc Randazzo left the boxing ring for the kitchen. And he never turned back.
[This just in: Beginning tonight and running through December 23, bring your Fighter movie ticket stub to Randazzo's and get a free set of 'balls. Meatballs, that is. And we promise they'll be bigger than the ones you may already have.]

Okay, we'll admit it. We were a little scared to interview Marc Randazzo, co-owner and chef of Randazzo's Little Italy in Coral Gables. Not that we assumed he's the type to slug a girl, but heck, the guy won 29 of 31 fights (16 knockouts, one loss, and one draw) as a pro boxer and he supposedly never faltered after being Tasered by the Miami police four times in a row last year, so... Let's just say we didn't want any of our questions to piss him off. Yet we didn't hold back.

Though he spends nearly every day elbow deep in cheese, olive oil, and breadcrumbs, the guy looks like he's still in training, too. (Rumor has it his diet consists of proteins and vegetables only.)

But somehow, even in the midst of all the Godfather posters, crazy checkered tablecloths, and photos of Randazzo in boxing gloves, he manages to put diners--and interviewers--at ease. Read what he had to tell us. Or else.

New Times: What's your culinary background?

Marc Randazzo: I used to cook for my family. That was my chore. My brother used to take care of the house and the yard. His job was actually harder. My dad used to critique me every day. I learned trying to please him. I watched my mother and my grandmother cook. I had to have dinner on the table by 5 o'clock. By the time I was 12, I was doing full dinners.

I liked to see the way good food pleased people. Though my dad was hard to please: 'This is too salty, this is greasy.' At least he was honest. Then I was a professional boxer. I was a sparring partner for Evander Holyfield. I became a light heavyweight WBA Champion. I had a good career. I fought professionally from 1988 to 1994.

Location Info

Randazzo's Little Italy

385 Miracle Mile, Coral Gables, FL

Category: Restaurant

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