Expert chef Andres Cadiente dead at age 97

Posted: Friday, September 27, 2002

JUNEAU (AP) -- Andres Cadiente left the Philippines in 1929 for a new life halfway around the world. He spent most of it in Juneau, raising nine children and developing a reputation as an outstanding chef.

Cadiente died Friday in Juneau at the age of 97.

Just before his 90th birthday, Cadiente told the Juneau Empire he was born to cook. He recalled roasting sweet potatoes as a young boy on his family's farm in the Philippines.

In his early 20s, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and began working as a cook on a base near Manila. His military service earned him a visa, and at age 24 he moved to California.

He worked as a chef in the 1930s, and eventually became the head chef at the Hollywood Tropics Restaurant.

When he came to Juneau in the early 1940s he immediately set his sights on the position of head chef at the Baranof Hotel because it was the biggest, classiest hotel in the region. By the mid-1950s he was running that kitchen.

In 1963, Cadiente retired from the Baranof and became the head cook on the state's first ferry, the Malaspina. Around the age of 70, when he was still working on the ferry, he went to school and earned his G.E.D.

He also produced a cookbook of international cuisine called ''El Mundo'' -- The World. The book was bedecked with flags and was dedicated to war veterans.

After he retired from the ferry system in 1976 he went to work feeding a crew of 225 oil and pipeline workers in Prudhoe Bay. Still energetic when he retired from that job, he went to college and earned an associate's degree.

A funeral was scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Friday at the Cathedral of the Nativity. Burial services will follow at the Evergreen Cemetery.

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