The Cuban-American restaurant owner passed away in his sleep on Saturday night from a suspected heart attack.
La Cubana, the restaurant he opened in June and was the executive chef of, took to Instagram to share the news about their ‘sadness at the sudden loss’.
‘On behalf of the La Cubana family, with heavy hearts, we are deeply saddened to share the passing of our beloved Executive Chef Carl Ruiz,’ La Cubana lovingly wrote in the caption of a photo of Carl.
‘No words can fully express our sadness at the sudden loss of our dear friend and brother. ‘Beyond his immense culinary talent, Carl’s larger-than-life personality never failed to entertain, enlighten, and uplift every person he encountered along his #Ruizing adventures.
His fierce intellect and infectious humor knew no bounds.’ ‘He was a mighty force of down home Cuban cuisine, and lived life to the fullest, just as he cooked — with “dancing always” as the most important ingredient.
Here at La Cubana, Carl paid proud tribute to his Cuban roots each night, and it is here that Carl’s legacy, undeniable spirit and passion for his culture will live on. We hope we make you proud, Carlito,’ the statement read.
They also took the opportunity to announce they’re honouring the celebrity chef with the establishment of a charity foundation.
La Cubana added: ‘To honour the work you loved so much Chef, La Cubana will continue your work in establishing The Carl Ruiz Scholarship Foundation for aspiring chefs.’
Carl Ruiz appeared alongside fellow celebrity chef Guy Fieri in Food Network shows such as Guy’s Grocery Games and Guy’s Ranch Kitchen.
Guy wrote on Twitter on Sunday night: ‘I’m heartbroken that my friend chef Carl Ruiz is gone.
I have no words to describe what a great friend he was to me and my family. His ability to make me laugh and smile under any circumstances was only outshined by his talent as a chef.’
He then tweeted: ‘Over the years, I’ve met a lot of great people but a friend like Carl is one in a hundred million. Carl ’The Cuban’ Ruiz will forever live on in my heart and in those of all who loved him.’
Food critic Troy Johnson also shared his condolences on Twitter: ‘Good buddy of mine is gone. He made people laugh who’d forgotten how to laugh.
He set rooms on fire. ‘He was the match and the kerosene. The smartest and lovable-ist asshole I knew.
This one gutted me.’ Food Network’s Alex Guarnaschelli tweeted: ‘This man was somehow fatherly, comforting, wise, reckless, brilliant, wickedly funny & unique all in 1.
My life will be lonelier without him. Love you Carl. I’ll make sure no one puts pineapple on pizza best I can without you here.