No More Le Cordon Bleu, Tipping Troubles at Pok Pok and Pre-Made Truffle Risotto: This Week in Food

No More Le Cordon Bleu, Tipping Troubles at Pok Pok and Pre-Made Truffle Risotto: This Week in FoodEXPAND
Le Cordon Bleu

Fig & Olive Gets Heat Over Pre-Made Food

Upscale Mediterranean restaurant chain Fig & Olive, which has eight locations across the country including one in WeHo, has been under fire this week after an investigation by Washington City Paper revealed that many of its high-priced dishes, such as a $26 truffle risotto, were previously pre-made in a Long Island commissary kitchen and shipped cross-country to be reheated and served.

Andy Ricker Talks Tipping With Playboy

After scraping the Tock reservation system and partial tipping charge at his new L.A. restaurant, Pok Pok chef Andy Ricker discusses some of the larger problems currently facing the restaurant industry, namely the wage gap between front- and back-of-house workers. It's a worthwhile read on many of the frustrations that restaurant owners face, both in L.A. and other parts of the country.
 
Le Cordon Bleu Shuts Down Schools

One of the country's better-known cooking schools will be shutting down all of its 16 U.S. locations (including two in the L.A. area) at the start of 2016. Le Cordon Bleu, which was founded in Paris in 1985, says it's been affected by new regulations that limit federal funding to for-profit schools, which means it will no longer be a viable business. The school's alumni include Julia Child, Mario Batali and Nancy Silverton, but in recent years the school has faced scrutiny over the value of its job placement services.

#AlmaProblems

Ari Taymor aired his grievances this week in a Munchies story titled "How Being Named the ‘Best New Restaurant in America' Hurt My Business." The decorated young chef blames elevated expectations in the wake of coverage by Bon Appetit, which he believes led media and diners to criticize his restaurant unfairly. Meanwhile, Taymor is currently cooking at his pop-up residency at the Standard in Hollywood.

In Local News:

  • Casbah Café in Silver Lake closed its doors this week after two decades in business, but the more surprising news was the acerbic open letter that laid blame on the neighborhood's growing "corporate culture."  

  • After opening a well-received location in Costa Mesa, East Coast imports the Halal Guys are bringing their meat-and-rice platters to Long Beach with a new store to open on Jan. 2.

  • Los Angeles Magazine has some uplifting news about L.A.'s iconic hot dog stand Tail 'O the Pup. Two locations of the historic business are expected to open next year in Beverly Grove and downtown.

Tweet o' the Week

Celebrating the Holidays and the Best of 2015:

Where to Eat Christmas Dinner in L.A.

Where to Eat New Year's Dinner In L.A.

The 10 Best New Restaurants in Los Angeles 2015

The 10 Best New Bars in Los Angeles 2015

In Memoriam: The Saddest Restaurant Closings of 2015 (in Haiku Form)

The 5 Best L.A. Breweries That Opened in 2015

5 Fool-Proof Gift Ideas From L.A. Weekly Critic Besha Rodell

10 L.A. Cookbooks That Make Perfect Gifts for Foodies


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