Posted on Apr 17, 2013 under Archives, Chefs, Interviews |
Chef Stefan Richter
Chef Stefan Richter was born in Finland, but spent the majority of his childhood in Germany where he began culinary training in his early teens. He worked his way through various European and Asian kitchens. In 1998, he joined master chefs Grant McPherson, Sotta Kuhn, Jacques Torres, Jean Philip Maury, and Marc Poidevin as part of the creative team for the opening of the Bellagio Hotel, Resort & Spa in Las Vegas as Executive Sous Chef. Since then, Stefan has moved to Santa Monica where he reimagined LA Farm into Stefan’s at LA Farm, serving New American cuisine with European flair. Stefan has also opened the restaurant group, Stefan’s Restaurants, which includes a full-time catering and event company and three steak houses in his native Finland.
I sat down with Stefan at his restaurant and we chatted about his experiences on Top Chef, his food philosophy, and his upcoming projects – burger restaurants.
Posted on Apr 07, 2013 under Archives, Interviews, Other interesting people |
Born in Vienna, Norbert Wabnig and his family moved to New Orleans in 1955, but returned during summers to Vienna, where he apprenticed in the kitchen of his uncle Franz Blauensteiner’s restaurant, Gausthaus au Stadt Paris. After graduating from the University of New Orleans, Wabnig moved to Los Angeles to pursue a music career with his band Wendell Nightfall Troupe. To support himself, he took a job at what is now The Cheese Store of Beverly Hills, which he later bought in 1978.
The Cheese Store of Beverly Hills is amazing. I was lucky to sit down with Norbert, literally break bread and talk about cheese. Here is our chat:
Posted on Mar 31, 2013 under Archives |
Last week my friend and chef in training Travis and I visited the brand new steakhouse at The Langham in Pasadena. The Royce | Wood-Fired Steakhouse is helmed by Chef Anthony Zappola, who has more than eight years of experience with Tom Colicchio’s Craft Restaurant Group.
The menu features a selection of USDA Prime Cuts, Australian Wagyu and Kobe-style Japanese Beef prepared over a wood-fired grill with White Oak and seasonal wood. There is also a nice selection of fresh, seasonal seafood, vegetables and side dishes. The blue and white décor reminded us of a less trendy version of The Bazaar’s blanca room.
Here is what we sampled:
I started out with a nice dirty martini, Trav had a Manhattan with extra cherries. Both were a great way to start off a steakhouse meal.
Our appetizers started off with a nice warm kale salad with smoked bacon and blue cheese and a steak tartar with a tabasco vinaigrette.
warm kale salad
Next came two more appetizers, a nice Wagyu beef carpaccio with spicy radishes and seared yellowfin tuna with aged soy and cucumber.
Wagyu beef carpaccio
seared yellowfin tuna
Next came our meat entrees, a perfectly cooked ribeye and our fave of the night – the Wagyu beef brisket with a soy ginger bordelaise. We both agreed the brisket was the star of the evening.
We also sampled a nice plate of Hawaiian blue prawns with candied peanuts and chiles.
We also sampled a nice plate of vegetables and some homey mac n cheese with tasso ham.
mac n cheese
Our last course was dessert. We chose the chocolate cake with a vanilla milkshake side. Yum.
The Royce’s Red Wine Room serves as a destination for pre- and post-dinner drinks, with wine tasting classes and a small plates menu. The Royce also offers a new communal dining experience, perfect for individual diners seeking a more casual spot, and it will continue to feature an exclusive chef’s table for guests to enjoy a multi-course dining experience. Manager Matt Nathanson was nice enough to show us the awesome wine rooms at The Royce.
Manager Matt Nathanson shows us the wine room
The Royce Wood-Fired Steakhouse is located in The Langham, 1401 South Oak Knoll Avenue in Pasadena. Reservations can be made at 626/568-3900.
Posted on Mar 25, 2013 under Archives |
Montage Beverly Hills
I recently visited Scarpetta at the Montage Beverly Hills to sample their upcoming Easter brunch for a story I am doing for The Daily Meal. My friend Nick and I enjoyed a variety of beautifully displayed delicious food.
Scarpetta’s seasonally inspired Easter brunch menu includes fresh local ingredients and clean earthy flavors that elevate modern Italian cuisine. Chef Alex Stratta’s courses include snow crab legs, polenta waffles, short rib agnolotti, green and white asparagus, and slow poached eggs with lobster hash and truffle hollandaise. Here is a sampling of what we enjoyed.
tomato mozzarella salad
The spaghetti and prime rib were our faves.
mac n cheese
sausage and bacon
The Cheese Store of Beverly Hills had an extensive display of delicious cheeses on display.
Norbert was on hand and created a special cheese plate for us.
my seafood plate
The dessert area was stunning. So much to choose from.
orange panna cotta
mini key lime pies
We had a great time enjoying all the wonderful food at Scarpetta’s Sunday brunch.
me and nick, bellini and mimosa
Make your Easter Sunday brunch reservation today at Scarpetta, $95, located at 225 North Canon Drive, Montage Beverly Hills, 310.860.7970.