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RESTAURANT TEAM

Executive Chef Raul A. Del Pozo

Executive Chef of Lightkeepers at The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami, Raul A. Del Pozo was born and raised in Miami, FL. He discovered his passion for cooking while exploring the beautiful fishing waters off the Florida coast, and then began working in Miami’s fine dining scene at Cindy Hutson’s restaurant Ortanique. Realizing passion, Del Pozo enrolled in Johnson & Wales University where he perfected his culinary form.

Over the past 10 years, traveling up and down the Eastern United States, Del Pozo has worked with some of the world’s greatest restaurateurs and ran some of the country’s highest praised restaurants. From Le Bouley and The Restaurant Daniel in NYC, Aria in Charlotte, North Carolina and stages with Alinea in Chicago, he has learned from, and worked with, some of the industry’s leading visionaries.

Del Pozo’s cuisine is progressive and modern, ever evolving and pushing the envelope daily. His previous restaurants have been awarded numerous accolades including AAA 4 Diamond Award and The Golden Spoon Award; in addition to serving as Brand Ambassador for the country of New Zealand at Star Chefs. Del Pozo has unquestionable insight on the whimsical and magical, and can’t wait for the opportunity to showcase his visions at Lightkeepers.


General Manager Justin Wilson

General Manager Justin Wilson, originally from Washington State, grew up in Naples, Florida. He attended Florida State University and while pursuing a degree in finance, he developed a passion for food, fine wine and bespoke cocktails which evolved into a career in the hospitality and food and beverage industry.

He began his career at The Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes in 2003. His proven ability to lead and motivate the workforce allowed him to move up in the ranks through various food and beverage leadership positions to include Restaurant Manager and Director of Banquets. In the midst of this, he founded Inno-Cepts, LLC, a restaurant management and consulting firm in Orlando, which he owned and operated from 2006 to 2008 where he focused on revitalizing the historic Church Street Station venues in Downtown Orlando.

Ready for a change of scenery, Wilson transitioned to Director of Restaurants at The Ritz-Carlton, Fort Lauderdale in 2013 where he oversaw the concept and development of Burlock Coast Seafare and Spirits oceanfront restaurant. His strategic business leadership skills in the development and implementation of the luxury hotel’s iconic brand, led him to oversee the development of The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami’s latest concept, Lightkeepers Coastal Cuisine and Crafted Cocktails. With nearly 15 years of experience under his belt, it’s no doubt Wilson will be an integral part of making the restaurant a successful addition to the brand and community.


Sommelier Jorge Mendoza

As a child growing up in the seaside city of Viña del Mar, Chile, Jorge Mendoza learned the beauty of pairing delicious wine with the perfect culinary accompaniment at the family dinner table. The Chilean appreciation of lingering at a bountiful table filled with food and wine chosen specifically for their compatible qualities sparked an interest in wines for Mendoza that would lead him to embark on his journey as a future wine steward.

After graduating from the National School of Hotel Management in Santiago with a degree in food and beverage, Mendoza moved to Miami to begin a career in the hospitality industry with Marriott International. He then went on to continue his education at Florida International University, earning a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Science degree in Hospitality Management. While studying the aromas and notes of wines, he honed his skill of analyzing and tasting wines, directing his talents into studying the art of a sommelier’s work. Learning more about the trade at various gourmet restaurants and fine hotels in the area, he began his career at The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami in 2001, where he eventually acted as sommelier at Cioppino, the resorts former upscale restaurant.

Regular travels through renowned wine regions from Burgundy, France to Tuscany, Italy serve as continued inspiration for Mendoza in his love of fine wine. As a result, he holds a Foundation Level Sommelier Certificate, Court of Master Sommeliers Certificate, Advanced Certificate Program for the Wines of France and Italy (with honors) and an Advanced Level Sommelier Certificate. Mendoza shares his vast expertise with aspiring sommeliers and aficionados as an instructor with the US Sommelier Association. Now, as sommelier for the oceanfront restaurant and bar, Lightkeepers at The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami, Mendoza uses his passion and skills to tell a complete story through food and wine pairing.