Chef Luis Arce Mota of La Contenta - Biography

New York, NY

September 2017

After emigrating from Mazatlán, Mexico to the United States in the 1990s, Luis Arce Mota began his career in hospitality as a dishwasher at famous, family-style Times Square restaurant Carmine’s. As a graduate of Cordon Bleu in Paris and the Culinary Institute of America, he gained formative experience under such New York City chefs as David Bouley, Michael Lomonaco, Michael Romano, and Cesar Ramirez before opening his West Village eatery Café Condesa, and later, Ofrenda, where he continued to mine his heritage. 

With over 20 years of restaurant experience under his belt, in 2015, Mota debuted La Contenta, a Lower East Side bistro spotlighting traditional Mexican ingredients and using classic French techniques. Dishes include stuffed chiles with succotash, grilled hanger steak with chimichurri, and shrimp enchiladas with Oaxaca cheese and chipotle salsa.