Updated with new opening date for Sant’olina, Friday March 12.

Chef Niki Nakayama joins MasterClass today to teach Modern Japanese Cooking and share her innovative take on the traditional culinary artform of kaiseki with fresh California ingredients. Joined by her sous chef and real-life partner, Carole Iida-Nakayama, chef Niki will honor the core philosophies behind the centuries-old multi-course style of dining and share how the order, composition and seasonality of your dishes can be designed to slow the mind and attune the senses.

April marks the 10-year anniversary of the opening of her Michelin-starred restaurant n/naka and at a time where many indoor dining restrictions remain in place, Chef Niki’s class  on the streaming platform offers the unique opportunity to apply the techniques behind some of her most intricate dishes in the comfort of your own kitchen. Classes include everything from bone broth and Japanese pantry essentials to modern rockfish sashimi and Japanese rice traditions.

“Cooking is about more than food,”  Nakayama said in a press release.  “It’s about inviting people in, welcoming a shared moment and appreciating the ideas and philosophies behind what makes Japanese food so wonderful.”

And for even more inspiration for cooking at home with the masters, the Jacques Pépin Foundation releases “Cook with Jacques & Friends Video Recipe Book: Volume Two” on Tuesday, March 9, featuring more than 40 chefs and bartenders including L.A. chefs Antonia Lofaso, Brooke Williamson and Josiah Citrin. Each contributor submitted a video and recipe so readers/watchers are able to cook alongside the contributor. The Video Recipe Book is available to all Jacques Pépin Foundation members and membership starts at $40/year. The Jacques Pépin Foundation supports free culinary and life skills training through community based organizations like Kitchens for Good in San Diego and Food Shift/Earth Island Interview in Northern California.

Sant’olina (Kathryn Ballay)

Led by the culinary team of  Michael Teich, David Johns and SLAB’s Burt Bakman, the h.wood Group is bringing a new pop-up restaurant to the rooftop of the Beverly Hilton on Friday, March 12. Sant’olina will feature  Mediterranean cuisine including mujadarra, haloumi, cauliflower tabbouleh, chickpea matbucha, lemonfish crudo, zucchini keftedes and harissa cured salmon with sprawling rooftop views. 

dineLA is still in full swing, and The Original Farmers Market is offering lunch for $15 daily from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. through Sunday, March 14.  Some of the options include a two-taco combo with agua fresca from Trejo’s Tacos Fritzi Coop is offering their buttermilk fried chicken sandwich alongside mac & cheese gobblers, and The French Crepe Company has custom 4-ingredient crepes Available for open air dine in, order for pickup or delivery.

What’s Popping Up is a weekly column in the LA Weekly that explores all that’s new in food and drink

Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting LA Weekly and our advertisers.