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Our Chef

Chef Orlando Amaro was born in Barquisimeto Venezuela.  He found his passion for the world of gastronomy growing up in a diverse culinary environment. With an Italian grandmother who was a pastry chef, Amaro had the constant influence of delicious dishes. A at young age, Amaro would cook for his friends and was always intrigued with different combinations of unique flavors.  At 20, chef Orlando followed his passion to Mexico where he  enrolled in the Culinary Institute of Mexico.
 
Soon after, he took an executive chef position at Hilton Hotel in Barquisimeto, and received a 5 star recognition as the youngest Chef at the Hilton Caracas Venezuela. In Caracas, he received a Diploma of Completion in Creative Cooking and Japanese Cooking from Takihro Hatanaka.  Amaro was also the winner of El tenedor de Oro (Golden Fork 2000) from the Venezuelan Academy of Gastronomy.  Still eager to grow, he began at Restaurant Arzak in San Sebastian, Spain. Working with Chef Juan Mari Arzak, Amaro learned to mix Spanish tradition with modern kitchen technology to provide new experiences at the table.
 
Soon after he came to the United States in 2002, he opened Biscayne Bay in Miami Beach.  Amaro was given the opportunity to utilize his skills from Europe, when he became the Executive Chef at Blue Moon Restaurant and Lounge.  He identified South Florida natural resources as a fountainhead for unique culinary combination and invented and explored the possibilities of juxtaposing fresh local fish and tropical fruits.  His efforts quickly gave Blue Moon the title of one of the “best restaurants in Miami”, a recognition given by The Miami Herald.
 
Amaro then took his talents to Caramelo Restaurant in Coral Gables in 2003.  After two years, Amaro became the Executive Chef at Deauville Beach Resort in Miami.  In 2007 Orlando opened a new restaurant in Lafayette, Louisiana “Pamplona Tapas Bar and Restaurant “.  Within three months, it became the best restaurant in the city.  After two years in his position, Amaro trained Craig Crosby to replace him as Executive Chef when he left to travel Europe.
 
In 2009, Amaro worked under the direction of Chef Ferran Adria at El Bulli in Girona, Spain.  FERRA ADRIA has being called the world’s greatest chef. Gourmet Magazine refered to Adria as “The Salvador Dali of the kitchen ” His restaurant “El Bulli “was recently named best restaurant in the world by the prestigious Magazine. El Bulli is Adria’s world renown flagship molecular gastronomy restaurant.   Amaro gained priceless knowledge in fine dining and application as well as new techniques and unique ingredients in the use of immersion circulators, hydrocolloids, methocells, and modified starches – all have been proven to inspire the most creative and incredible new dishes.
  • House of King Magazine (Miami, FL), Cover & Main article, 2006
  • Socialite Magazine (Miami, FL), Cover & Main article 2006
  • Chef of the Year 2005 (Miami, FL), Miami Restaurant Association
  • Best New Fine Dining Restaurant 2006 (Miami, FL), Miami Restaurant Association
  • Top Ten Restaurant 2006 (Miami, FL), National Zagat Dining Guide
  • Top Chef 2009 (Louisiana), 10/12 Magazine
  • Best Paella 2010 (New Orleans – San Fermin), New Orleans Festival
From his roots in Venezuela to his experiences in Spain, Chef Amaro brings a new culinary culture to SW DC.
 
He wishes you the best and that you enjoy your meal and experience at Station 4.

Our Owner

Med Lahlou is the owner of five popular restaurants in Washington, DC: Station 4, Lupo VerdeTunnicliff’s, and Ulah Bistro. A native of France, Med began traveling throughout Europe with his family at an early age nurturing his interest and aptitude for diverse languages, cultures, while refining his palate. Med’s love and understanding of European cuisine is a reflection of this extensive exposure and his international parents, a French-born mother and Moroccan father.

At age 16, Med moved to Washington, DC with his family, and by age 21, he was working at Stoney’s. After managing Stoney’s for over a decade, he became co-owner. Lahlou’s passion for opening and owning restaurants did not stop with Stoney’s as he soon expanded his restaurant group in 2001 to include Tunnicliff’s in the Eastern Market area. A haven for both residents and politicos alike, Tunnicliff’s attracts guests with its accessible menu, friendly service and popular heated patio. Saturday and Sunday brunch always attracts a line out the door, and is a tradition at the restaurant.

Next came Ulah Bistro in 2006, which is a trend-setting spot in the hip U Street corridor. The restaurant’s chic two-level interior gives way to an open kitchen along the back of the first floor. Guests enjoy an elegant New York-style lounge area on the second floor, which is popular for private parties.

Lahlou was approached by the Arena Stage group, who recently opened the largest theater in Washington, DC along the Southwest Waterfront, about opening a restaurant. The Arena Stage management and patrons were frequent guests of Ulah Bistro when the theater was located in the U Street neighborhood. Med decided to accept the challenge of providing accessible fine dining near Arena Stage at their new waterfront location and Station 4 became a reality in June 2011. Lahlou’s fourth restaurant and most personal endeavor to date, Station 4 brings a new level of restaurant to the emerging waterfront district with modern American bistro cuisine in a stunning environment.

Med is a young and talented restaurateur with an ever-expanding horizon. Always striving to offer high quality experiences to patrons, he is a good example of the American dream come true and Washingtonians can look forward to his future endeavors.

Staff

Owner
Med Lahlou 

Managing Partner
Maryna Masciandaro

Chef
Orlando Amaro

Manager
Ivana Kavaja

Assistant Manager
Joseph Canelon

Assistant Manager
Mehdi Benchekroun