Archives for Interviews category

Interview with Chef Susan Feniger

Posted on Aug 13, 2012 under Archives, Chefs, Interviews | No Comment
Chef Susan Feniger

Chef Susan Feniger

Susan Feniger is one half of the popular “Too Hot Tamales” along with her longtime business partner Mary Sue Milliken. Almost 30 years ago, the two chefs opened CITY. Next came Border Grill in Santa Monica, California and Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, and then the Latin themed Ciudad in downtown Los Angeles and the Border Grill Truck. With the opening of Susan Feniger’s STREET in Hollywood in 2009, the celebrated chef launched her first solo venture.  Feniger’s dream of creating a unique restaurant inspired by the authentic flavors of street food was fulfilled. A veteran of 396 episodes of “Too Hot Tamales” and “Tamales World Tour” series, Feniger also co-authored five cookbooks with Milliken–City Cuisine, Mesa Mexicana, Cantina, Cooking with Too Hot Tamales, and Mexican Cooking for Dummies.   Her new book is Susan Feniger’s Street Food.  She has been on the board of the Scleroderma Research Foundation for 17 years and also serves on the board of the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center.  I sat down with Chef Feniger to discuss her new book, STREET restaurant, and her philosophy on cooking.


Interview with Chef Bernhard Mairinger of BierBeisl, Beverly Hills

Posted on May 17, 2012 under Archives, Chefs, Interviews | No Comment
Chef Bernhard Maringer

Chef Bernhard Mairinger

At the age of 15, Austrian born Bernhard Mairinger began his formal culinary training as the Commis de Cuisine at Austria Classic Hotel Aichinger, a four star Resort & Spa where he worked during his tenure at the respected culinary academy Höhere Bundeslehranstalt für Tourismus Bad Ischl.

He continued to work his way up the ranks at various restaurants and resorts throughout Europe, including Hotel Alex in Zermatt Switzerland, Ashdown Park Hotel near London, and Hotel Zürserhof, one of Austria’s top ski resorts of the Arlberg. This seven year journey led to Mairinger’s entry into the Michelin star world, in his position as Chef Tournant for Da Gianni in Mannheim, Germany.

At 23, Mairinger was recruited by the Patina Restaurant Group to serve as Chef de Cuisine for Patina at the Hollywood Bowl, Nick & Stef’s Steakhouse and, most recently at Patina, the company’s Michelin star flagship restaurant, which was also rated four stars and named Best Restaurant of Los Angeles in 2010 by the Los Angeles Times.

At 27, Chef Mairinger brings Los Angeles its first taste of authentic Austrian fare with the opening of his restaurant BierBeisl, his highly anticipated solo debut to LA’s dining scene.

In February 2012 shortly after the restaurant opened Mairinger was named to Zagat Guides’ 30Under30 list honoring the rising stars of the Los Angeles culinary scene.  After a  tasting dinner of some delicious Austrian fare, I sat down with Chef Mairinger to chat about his love of traditional Austrian food, see pics at and the opening of BierBeisl.


Interview with Joe Bastianich

Posted on Apr 20, 2012 under Archives, Chefs, Interviews, Other interesting people | No Comment
Joe Bastianich, cover of his new book Restaurant Man

Joe Bastianich, cover of his new book Restaurant Man

I caught up with restaurateur, winemaker, and host of MasterChef US and MasterChef Italy Joe Bastianich on the new redesigned set of MasterChef in Culver City.

Bastianich, along with partners Mario Batali and his mother Lidia Bastianich – has established some of the country’s most celebrated restaurants in New York, Las Vegas and Los Angeles including Babbo Ristorante e Enoteca, Lupa Osteria Romana, Esca, Casa Mono, Bar Jamόn, Otto Enoteca Pizzeria, Del Posto (New York),  B&B Ristorante and Carnevino (Las Vegas)  and Pizzeria Mozza and Osteria Mozza (Los Angeles). The beginning of 2011 marked Bastianich and Batali’s  first overseas venture with the opening of Osteria and Pizzeria Mozza in Singapore.

In summer 2010, Bastianich again partnered with his mother and Batali, as well as Italian retail pioneer Oscar Farinetti, to bring Eataly, the largest artisanal food and wine market in the world, to New York.

Additionally, Bastianich operates three wineries in Italy and one in Argentina.   He has authored several books on wine, including the award winning “Vino Italiano” with Sommelier David Lynch.

Bastianich is an accomplished author whose passion for the culinary arts has been recognized with professional awards from Bon Appétit magazine and the James Beard Foundation.

I talked with Bastianich about his love of food and wine, MasterChef US and Italy, and his upcoming memoir, “Restaurant Man,” scheduled for release on May 1, 2012.


Interview with Chef Suzanne Goin

Posted on Nov 24, 2011 under Archives, Chefs, Interviews | No Comment
Chef Suzanne Goin

Chef Suzanne Goin

A few days ago I headed west to The Gourmandise School of Sweets and Savories and Venokado at Santa Monica Place to attend a booksigning, cooking demo and wine tasting from one of my favorite LA chefs, Suzanne Goin.  I sat down with Chef Goin shortly before the demo to talk about her many restaurants and her latest venture (with partner Caroline Styne), The Larder on Maple Drive in Beverly Hills, a quick service cafe serving up breakfast and dinner.

One of Los Angeles’ most beloved chefs, Suzanne Goin cooks with a palette of colors and flavors that showcase the best farmers and producers from the Southern California markets. In all three of her restaurants, Lucques, A.O.C., and Tavern, her passion for seasonal cooking is reflected in her ever-changing menus and artfully presented dishes.  Her artistry has earned her numerous accolades including Food & Wine Magazine’s Best New Chefs of 1999, the James Beard Foundation’s Best Chef: California in 2006, and four nominations for the national Outstanding Chef Award in 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011.  Her restaurants have been praised by Gourmet magazine, Bon Appétit and Los Angeles Times (which awarded Lucques three stars).