Opulent estates. Palm-lined Rodeo Drive. Lavish hotels and stretch limousines. Look around Beverly Hills, and it’s no wonder this city gets its reputation as an international symbol of the ultimate in luxury. From the galleries and cafes of downtown’s Golden Triangle to some of the world’s priciest real estate in the hills above Sunset Boulevard, Beverly Hills lives up to its glistening reputation. And then we have the exquisite cuisine by the celebrity chefs, of course!
Beverly Hills has plenty of chefs that are famous from the TV shows and appearances that have made them stars in the U.S., and gives you the opportunity to taste the delicious results of their unique cooking styles and their love for the Golden State’s amazing ingredients.
WOLFGANG PUCK AT SPAGO
Experience home base for a true original
Charismatic Austrian-born Wolfgang Puck fused chef and celebrity before there were Food Network mega-stars. Spago, Puck’s signature restaurant launched in 1982, still wows the packed tables (where he stops by after the dinner rush). A snappy makeover by top interior designer Waldo Fernandez adds elegant but comfortably hip style. But let’s not forget the food. Chef Puck’s signature way of bringing unexpected ingredients together in tempting ways hasn’t changed (example: Sonoma Lamb Rack Smoked with Local Rabbit Tobacco), but there is a refreshing new focus on seasonal offerings. Die-hard fans needn’t worry: the decadent smoked salmon pizza is still on the bar and lunch menus. Consider splurging on the unforgettable (and always changing) eight-course tasting menu focusing on ingredients from California.
CURTIS STONE AT MAUDE
First he was famous; now he’s got a restaurant
Even though Curtis Stone has been a chef since the age of 18, he decided to wait for 20 years to open up his first restaurant. In the interim he was quite busy, though—he cooked at some of London’s envelope-pushing restaurants, and has a laundry list of television credits, including The Celebrity Apprentice, Iron Chef America, Top Chef, and Take Home Chef.
In February 2014, Chef Stone decided to take the plunge and open his own restaurant, debuting Maude in Beverly Hills. (It’s named after his “dear granny.”) It’s quite a concept: each month, one item serves as “inspiration” for Maude’s 9-course tasting menu; dining is an intimate experience, to say the least, as the “tiny little restaurant” (as dubbed by Chef Stone) seats no more than 25 guests at a time.
METTE WILLIAMS AT CULINA
Winner, Chef Wanted with Anne Burrell
Focusing on innovative Italian food with a fresh, modern twist, Chef Williams won her current job at this fancy-night-out Beverly Hills destination, part of the Four Season Los Angeles complex, by competing for it on TV. Trained at the Global Culinary Academy in San Francisco, Chef Williams cooked under Wolfgang Puck at Spago and at Postrio in San Francisco before taking the reins at Culina, where she admits that when it comes to creating new recipes, she sometimes dreams them up in her sleep. Sweet dreams, indeed. The restaurant offers a “live” crudo bar menu (settle in at the bar to watch just how fresh the preparation is) and on-point dinner service in a sleek, sexy space that doesn’t feel at all like a hotel eatery. Allow time for drinks in the intimate outdoor area with flickering fire pit; you’ll wish you could transport it “as is” to your own backyard.
THOMAS KELLAR AT BOUCHON RESTAURANT
Winner, James Beard Foundation; creator of world-renown The French Laundry in Yountville, Napa
Bouchon is the third French-style bistro created by renowned Chef Thomas Keller. The name, derived from a specific style of café that existed in the French province of Lyon, hints at classic bistro menu selections like Roasted Chicken, Leg of Lamb and Quiche Lorraine. At the restaurant’s Bar Bouchon, diners may choose from small plate options or oysters from the raw bar, complemented by a glass of Southern California wine or White Apron, a pilsner style beer crafted especially for Bouchon.
For more information visit: www.lovebeverlyhills.com