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Firestone Walker Hires in Venice, Gordon Ramsay Dines at Sotto, and More News

Plus the real reason L.A. keeps getting snubbed by the James Beard Foundation.

Bar Mateo at Zinc Cafe, Arts District
Bar Mateo at Zinc Cafe, Arts District
Elizabeth Daniels
Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

McConnell’s (finally) opens in Studio City

Though it’s been a long time coming, it seems that McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams has indeed landed their second location in Studio City as of today. Ownership reached out late last night to say the unveiling was a go, nearly one year after first announcing the Ventura Place location. Go get some ice cream when the sun starts shining again.

Does LA really want that James Beard Award?

Besha Rodell at LA Weekly offers a pretty interesting and compelling argument about L.A. and it’s so-so relationship with the James Beards. Turns out we don’t have a great track record of winning them, just getting nominated — but that might have more to do with tourism, funnily enough, than the food itself. Check out the piece for more.

Firestone Walker hires up in Venice

It’s come that time: Firestone Walker Venice is close enough to opening that they’re actually hiring staff. That’s usually the last step in the equation, which means the bar should be dropping sometime in March, likely. Want to work for them yourself? They’ve got a ton of open positions right now.

Gordon Ramsay hits Sotto

Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay hit up Sotto last night for a meal with friends, per this Instagram post. Not a bad way to spend a night, indeed.

Dinner with the dudes at @sottola

A photo posted by Gordon Ramsay (@gordongram) on

Let Roo run your night

LAist gives some love to new startup Roo, which is currently live in L.A. but has plans to take over the world. The idea is that Roo acts as a real-time barometer of coolness, telling you which restaurants and clubs are poppin’ off and which ones might be duds.

Beverly Hills Brownie Company calls it quits

No more decadent brownies for the Beverly Hills crowd, as the neighborhood-named Brownie Company has decided to shutter. That's per Toddrickallen, who says the quiet shutter seemingly came out of nowhere, and that there's no other current tenant lined up for the address.

Zinc Cafe does a bartender’s challenge

The drinking side of Zinc Cafe in the Arts District is called Bar Mateo, and that’s where bartenders will be rocking a competition called 86’d through the entire month of March. Done in collaboration with the Loft and Bear folks, the plan is to put bartenders head to head every Sunday from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. in a variety of competitions using unknown ingredients or special tricks. Judges pick, and one winner is crowned at the end of the month.