Virtual event


Thanks to everyone that reserved their spots for our virtual event!

Celebrate the flavors of the archipelago all year long by getting the digital cookbook Recetas para Preservar.

Available until December 31*.

cooking Brings us together

Tune in wherever you are to celebrate our local cuisine in harmony with nature.

Join us and get closer to Chef Natalia Vallejo of Cocina al Fondo in San Juan and Chef Jonathan Meléndez of Casa Mono & Bar Jamón in New York as they meet in the kitchen. Both chefs created a recipe for the night and you’ll have the opportunity to cook it with them. They will be alongside the farmer Fernando Maldonado from Finca Carite 3.0, whose crops will be part of the evening’s dish to highlight the connection between the land and the recipes that nourish us. 

Be part of this culinary experience and contribute to the conservation of the islands of Puerto Rico wherever you are.



Opening cocktail with Carlos Irizarry

Para la Naturaleza Presentation

Cooking session and conversation with the Chefs

Closing cocktail with Carlos Irizarry

With your contribution, enjoy local products

A box will be mailed to you prior to the event containing:

  • Puerto Rican coffee
  • A box of guava cookies from Lucía Patisserie
  • Star fruit marmalade by Chef Natalia Vallejo
  • Pure honey from Puerto Rico 
  • Cocktail ingredients
  • Don Q Rum
  • Reusable portable bamboo utensils
  • Reusable tote bag

Registration deadline: Thursday, November 30, 2023

Get ready to cook


Review and download your recipe, purchase the ingredients needed to prepare for the night of the event.


You will receive a box with products made in Puerto Rico and some ingredients for the evening’s cocktails.


Log in to the event and cook with the chefs.


Once you complete your reservation, you will have access to an exclusive WhatsApp group where you can ask the chefs any questions related to the event and chat with other guests. After the event, you will have access to the live video recording with the chefs and their recipe.


Tuna Crudo with Bean Escabeche

* There will be a vegan / vegetarian alternative


Chef Natalia Vallejo

Cocina al Fondo

Natalia Vallejo is a Puerto Rican chef whose unique flavor profile spans the culinary landscape. She studied Nutrition and Dietetics at the University of Puerto Rico before moving to Argentina to study at the renowned Gato Dumas and Mausi Sebess. She’s worked in prominent restaurants all over South America, Latin America, and Europe. In 2019 she opened Cocina al Fondo in Santurce—a restaurant rooted in the traditions and flavors of the Puerto Rican identity, utilizing locally-sourced ingredients from agricultural farms, fishermen, and local producers around the island. In 2020, Vallejo was nominated for “Best New Restaurant” and “Best Chef: South” by the James Beard Foundation but was awarded the coveted “Best Chef: South” in 2023 from the Foundation. 

Chef Jonathan

Chef Jonathan Meléndez

Casa Mono & Bar Jamón
Jonathan Meléndez, originally from Cayey, Puerto Rico, is a leading figure in the culinary world, who currently serves as executive chef at Casa Mono & Bar Jamon in New York City. His culinary passion began in the halls of the Escuela Hotelera de San Juan, after which he began his career at the renowned Budatai restaurant, under the guidance of Chef Roberto Treviño. In search of new experiences, Jonathan headed to the city that never sleeps in 2014, where he landed a line cook position at Casa Mono, an acclaimed Spanish restaurant with a Michelin star. However, life took an unexpected turn when he decided to return to Puerto Rico to start a family. Unfortunately, his plans were interrupted by Hurricane Maria, forcing Jonathan to make the difficult decision to return to New York City once again. Determined to continue his culinary journey, he sought out new challenges and worked at esteemed establishments such as, La Sirena and Momofuku – from renowned chef Dave Chang. These experiences significantly influenced his cooking style, blending his Puerto Rican roots with international flavors. In 2020, Jonathan had the opportunity to rejoin the Casa Mono team, this time as Sous Chef. His dedication and talent did not go unnoticed and in 2021 he was promoted to the position of Executive Chef. Under his leadership, Casa Mono achieved its remarkable thirteenth Michelin star, a testament to Jonathan’s culinary prowess and innovative approach to cooking. With this success he has been able to return to Puerto Rico periodically, with a fresh perspective and a renewed mission, utilizing the local products that Puerto Rico has to offer and serve to his diners. In essence, Jonathan Meléndez’s journey is a story of resilience, talent and a deep love for his culture, which is vividly expressed through his culinary creations.


Fernando Maldonado

Fernando Maldonado

Finca Carite 3.0

Originally from Guatemala, Fernando holds a B.S. in Aquaculture and Business Management from Florida and an M.Sc. in Ecosocial Design from Gaia University. He designed and operated aquaponics systems and managed a municipal garden in Guatemala City. In 2014, he managed the farm at the Punta Mona Center in Costa Rica. Later, he served as the Program Manager of the Global Sustainability Resource Center at the University of California, Irvine. For several years, he was a facilitator and board member for SERES Global, an organization that empowers youth leadership in sustainability in Central America.

In 2018, he moved to his mother’s homeland, Puerto Rico, to start a family with his wife, Arielle, and to pursue the dream of an intergenerational farm project. The farm, Carite 3.0, is situated in the mountains of the southeast and follows a model focused on ecological food production, agrotourism, education, and art. Beyond the farm, he works as a consultant, designing and building school gardens and greenhouses across the island. As an educator, he serves as one of the facilitators for the Josco Bravo Agroecology School and provides technical assistance to Montessori public schools. He enjoys fishing, surfing, and engaging in meaningful conversations centered around enjoying fresh, locally sourced food.


Carlos Irizarry

La Factoría

Carlos Irizarry studied filmmaking at the University of Puerto Rico but found his passion for bartending in New York City in Havana Central in 2011. In 2013, Carlos started working in La Factoría under the mentorship of Leslie Cofresí and Roberto Berdecía, and he became part of the global community of hospitality, collaborating with bartenders, brands, and the bar community in general, throughout Latin America, Europe, the United States, and Asia. In 2016, Carlos started a new role as General Manager of La Factoría and to this date, oversees the project. More recently, Carlos has been working on developing a new location for La Factoría in his hometown of Ponce and building stronger bridges of communication between hospitality workers around the world.

Cooking is a way to conserve who we are