Nikita Malibu shuttered just a few days ago, and already billionaire Oracle CEO Larry Ellison is trying to revive the massive seaside eatery with some chef star power and a concept makeover. Word on the street is that the likes of Ricardo Zarate (who was unceremoniously tossed from his restaurants), Michael Voltaggio (ink.) and Jeff Mahin (Stella Barra) are on the short list of chefs whom the billionaire is scoping out to helm the new restaurant.
At the moment, Ellison hasn't settled on a chef to run the kitchen, but the huge real estate and expansive patio are sure to draw in at least some interest from name-brand cooks. Oh, and the nearly unlimited checkbook certainly won't hurt a chef with grand aspirations.
Will this be the return of Ricardo Zarate (whose restaurant Picca is still operating at the moment)? Will Michael Voltaggio partner with another super rich person (ink. was done in conjunction with former CAA founder and Disney president Michael Ovitz)? Will Jeff Mahin jump from his afiliation with Rich Melman's behemoth Lettuce Entertain You restaurant group? Let the chef hunt begin for one of the most intriguing restaurant spaces in Los Angeles right now.