May 11, 2021
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Best Chefs in Los Angeles

A chef is a trained professional, proficient in various food preparation methods, skills, tools, and ideas. Many chefs specialize in a particular cuisine and receive formal training from an institution or gain experience by apprenticing for a qualified chef. 

How Big Is It? 

According to data gathered by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are a total of 21,370 chefs currently working in the state of California. 

Different Types Within the Industry 

A chef has several responsibilities in the kitchen, often including planning the menu, the food budget, sourcing and purchasing supplies, preparing the food, and ensuring that the quality and service are up to par. Thankfully, there are different types of chefs to take on these jobs:

Executive Chef: Recognized as the Chef de Cuisine, the Executive Chef is the position many who enter the culinary industry aspire to become. Considered as the managers of the kitchen, they handle practically everything that happens inside it. 

Sous Chef: Next in the kitchen hierarchy, a Sous Chef is the assistant of the Executive Chef. To a lesser degree, the Sous Chef has similar responsibilities to the Chef de Cuisine only on a smaller scale.

Senior Chef: His or her primary task is to create a particular menu that they’re known to specialize or excel in. Formally called the Chef de Partie, they’re in charge of directing the prep work that the kitchen staff must do.

Pastry Chef: Tasked primarily with creating cakes, pastries, bread, chocolate, and so on — a Pastry Chef often leads a group of bakers, chocolatiers, and other dessert specialists. They make sure that desserts are created to pair well with other menu items prepared by the Executive Chef.

Interesting Statistics 

The average American has been known to eat out 4 to 5 times a week. That’s about 18.2 meals eaten out of the home monthly. 

Fun Facts 

Did you know that you can eat 23 karat gold for dessert? The world’s most expensive dessert can be found in New York’s Serendipity 3. If you have $25,000 to spare, try the Frrrozen Haute chocolate ice cream sundae from their menu.

On the other hand, Singapore’s street food vendor Hawker Chan sells the world's cheapest Michelin-star meal — for as little as $2.25.

History of Chefs  

In early civilizations, chefs were often employed by kings, aristocrats, and priests. Culinary institutions, however, are a modern innovation. It wasn’t until the late 1800s when the first cooking school was established — The Boston Cooking School in 1879. It provided groundwork, standardized practices, and recipes for other schools to follow.

Best Chefs in Los Angeles
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1. Brandon Kida
Name Search / Names starting with B / Brandon Kida
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Profession/Category: Pastry Chef
Experience: 15 years
Interesting Accomplishments: Through his leadership, the Clement at the Peninsular Hotel received four stars in 2015 from the Forbes Travel Guide. How Did He Get His Start?: Owner and Executive Chef of Hinoki & the Bird, Brandon is a graduate of New York’s acclaimed Culinary Institute of America. He started his career at the Peninsula Hotel New York, which he still continues to do today while running his own restaurant.
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2. Isa Fabro
Name Search / Names starting with I / Isa Fabro
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Profession/Category: Pastry Chef
Experience: 15 years
Interesting Accomplishments: She was the first Filipino to be invited to join the lineup of food booths at the Coachella festival, and has since been asked to join festivals all over the world. How Did She Get Her Start?: A graduate of Loyola Marymount University with a degree in film and philosophy, she initially worked for Capitol Records in her 20’s. Due to a series of events, she found herself with a new job halfway through culinary school. She worked for 7 years in the fine dining industry before making a switch from savory to pastries.
Links: Website LinkedIn
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3. Dominique Crisp
Name Search / Names starting with D / Dominique ...
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Profession/Category: Executive Chef
Experience: 11 years
Interesting Accomplishments: He now works as a chef and partner of the basque-inspired bistro, Saso. How Did He Get His Start?: Born and raised in his family’s vineyard in Oregon, by age 15 he was already working in kitchens around his neighborhood. After high school, he moved to France where he honed his culinary techniques and the art of French hospitality. His first shot as an executive chef was in LA where he worked for two years before starting at Saso
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4. Carolyn Hessel
Name Search / Names starting with C / Carolyn He...
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Profession/Category: Sous Chef
Experience: Estimated 4-5 years
Interesting Accomplishments: Her peers praise her work ethic and skills in the kitchen. How Did She Get Her Start?: Still considered fairly new to the industry, Chef Hessel began her career in public relations. After university, Carolyn found herself working in the food industry and has never looked back. She graduated with a degree in Culinary Arts at the Johnson & Wales University.
Links: LinkedIn
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5. Nyesha Arrington
Name Search / Names starting with N / Nyesha Arr...
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Profession/Category: Executive Chef
Experience: 19 years
Interesting Accomplishments: She’s regularly featured in various publications and has partnered up with many large companies (Facebook, Nike, etc) to advocate for her culinary vision for the world. How Did She Get Her Start?: Having been exposed to diverse culinary flavors by her grandmother as a young child, California-born Nyesha spent little time between high school and culinary school. Nyesha completed her culinary education at The Art Institute of California in Los Angeles.
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6. Christina Olufson
Name Search / Names starting with C / Christina ...
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Profession/Category: Pastry Chef
Experience: 9 years
Interesting Accomplishments: After years of working as a pastry chef, Christina now co-owns Bossie’s Kitchen — a dining establishment that focuses on organic and seasonal farmer’s market offerings. How Did She Get Her Start?: Christina credits the Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Pasadena for her education.
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7. Lord Meynard Llera
Name Search / Names starting with L / Lord Meyna...
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Profession/Category: Executive Chef/Sous Chef/Senior Chef/Demi Chef/Pastry Chef
Experience: 10 years
Interesting Accomplishments: After working for a string of the most celebrated kitchens in LA, he is now following his dreams via his pop-up restaurant that creates authentic Filipino food. How Did He Get His Start?: The Culinary Institute of America is where Lord chose to pursue his education. Born in the Philippines, he moved to the United States in 2004 to study culinary arts.
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8. Kriss Harvey
Name Search / Names starting with K / Kriss Harvey
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Profession/Category: Pastry Chef
Experience: 16 years
Interesting Accomplishments: He’s held pastry positions in the leading establishments across the United States. How Did He Get His Start?: Recognized for his talent as a pastry chef, specifically as a chocolatier, Chef Kriss trained under many of the world’s most highly respected chefs. His career began at the Cacao Barry Chocolate Academy where he was taken under the wing of Master Chocolatier Pascal Janvier. He later moved to Paris to learn more about French pastries from legendary pastry chefs.
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9. Minh Phan
Name Search / Names starting with M / Minh Phan
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Profession/Category: Executive Chef/Sous Chef/Senior Chef/Demi Chef/Pastry Chef
Experience: Estimated 15-20 years
Interesting Accomplishments: She currently owns and runs a widely successful pop-up called Porridge + Puffs. How Did She Get Her Start?: A Los Angeles native, she started out her career in the kitchen of a fine dining establishment in NYC. She eventually moved back to her hometown to dabble in a few noteworthy establishments there, though she spent many years in documentary filmmaking.
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10. Armando De La Torre Jr.
Name Search / Names starting with A / Armando De...
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Profession/Category: Chef/Restaurateur
Experience: 10 years
Interesting Accomplishments: Since the inception of Guisados, it has been featured in countless TV shows, as well as in travel and food publications. The most notable recognition, according to Armando, is from Conde Nast Traveller where Guisados was named as one of the top restaurants in the world. How Did He Get His Start?: A Business Administration graduate from Loyola Marymount University, Amrnado has no culinary education. His main experience in the food industry was working in restaurants as a teenager. Guisados was born in 2010. Though not a technically trained chef, he’s recognized by many in the industry for his contribution to the L.A. food scene. He has since added George’s Burger Stand to his growing number of business ventures.
Links: Website LinkedIn

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