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The Beautiful, Messy, Delicious Meaning Behind Being a Chef in Los Angeles

Plus a Downtown beer party, bygone diners, and a weekend Southern brunch

Curtis Stone Profile
Curtis Stone at Gwen
Wonho Frank Lee

The chefs of this city

Jonathan Gold has penned some mighty prose on what it means to truly be a chef in Los Angeles these days. The LA Times piece points to underrated leads like Gary Menes of Le Comptoir, doing nightly, limited, produce-driven service from a small space in Koreatown, as one example of the endless melding of ideas this city comes up with. There’s also street food culture, the modern Filipino and Mexican food movements, and places like Kali that feel as if they couldn’t exist anywhere else in the universe.

As Gold put it in his previous review of Side Chick in Arcadia, this city excels as giving diners the thing that chefs have actually wanted to eat themselves all along. Big, bold, flavorful plates of hot fried chicken, thoughtful arrays of raw fish from Shunji, or simple tacos, always tacos. Saying you’re a chef in Los Angeles is like vaguely saying you cook non-regional Mexican cuisine: There’s just more to the story here.

Another look at beer

Yorkshire Square Brewing gets another media look, this time from the LA Weekly. Writer Sarah Bennett talks with head brewer Andy Black (previously of MacLeod) about true English pub beers, with the unique hand-pulls, low ABV, and all.

Make it official

Downtown’s kitschiest bar is ready for its big reveal, following a few weeks of softly serving customers pints. Bernadette’s is having a full-on grand opening party this coming Sunday, and you should get down there for the drink specials (but stay for the cabinet game Tapper).

#thedumbestbarinLA is about to be the grandest, openest bar in LA! Sunday 5/7, 12p-2a

A post shared by Bernadette's (@weekendatbernadettes) on

A taste of Taiwan

You can find plenty of Taiwanese flavors spread across greater Los Angeles if you’re willing to look, especially when it comes to snacks. KCRW offers a look at five of the best Taiwanese bites out there, and where to find them.

RIP Ships

LA Mag has a great nostalgic look back at Ships, the long-gone diners that once had a hold on greater Los Angeles. Sporting some serious Googie architecture and a Jetsons-like space theme, the place was for its time a true destination for all.

Thai feasts

A Northern Thai feast is coming to Ayara Luk in Westchester this Saturday, running from 10 a.m. to noon and including favorites like khao soi, larb, and loads of other dishes. There will also be a chef demonstration and lots of other fun stuff included in the $80 price tag.

Rice Bar’s next play

Downtown’s Rice Bar is expanding its repertoire, in a way. Chef Charles Olalia is partnering up with nearby neighbor the Los Angeles Athletic Club for a spring menu that will include plenty of Filipino flavors, but in a different package than the tiny Rice Bar. Marcos Tello will also be updating the drinks side of things.

Brunch in Beverly Hills

Citizen is launching brunch this weekend in Beverly Hills, offering locals a look at everything from housemade cinnamon rolls to a big $44 Southern food plate that includes fried chicken, brioche french toast, ham, grits, and more. There are drinks too, from boozy sweet tea to tiki takes you might not expect.

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