Tag Archives: Noriyuki Sugie

Modern Global Tastings

Marcel Vigneron at BreadBar’s Hatchi Series

Marcel Vigneron at HatchiMy two biggest pet peeves in life are ungratefulness and arrogance. If I meet a person, and he (or she) continually shows signs of either, I’m quick to cut and run.

When I initially met chef Marcel Vigneron in the Bazaar’s kitchen last year, I thought he was full of arrogance. So much so, that the first thing I said to him (after a cocktail or two) was, “I hated you on Top Chef”.

If you’re not familiar with the show, Marcel was the runner-up (to Ilan Hall) on Top Chef season two, and his “character” was the one that I think most viewers loved to hate (including me). He was young, cute, super talented and the other cheftestants on the show didn’t like him much either. On TV, Marcel seemed overly cocky, arrogant and quietly obnoxious.

When I think back to our first meeting, I’m still horrified with my behavior. How could I judge a person by his “performance” on a REALITY show? I told a complete stranger that I HATED him. That’s a powerful word, in real life or not. And to top off my ill-mannered introduction, I asked to take a picture with him (he kindly obliged). Talk about ARROGANCE (on my part)!

Great Chefs of L.A. 2009Thankfully, Marcel and I are now friends, and I’ve apologized for that first meeting several times. He is absolutely one of the sweetest and most accomplished chefs around, and what came off as “arrogance” on TV was simply CONFIDENCE. It’s such a shame that the Bazaar didn’t appreciate his talent or patience. He quit recently and has been busy filming a pilot for SYFY, while also managing his Modern Global Tasting Catering Company.

Luckily, we food lovers got to experience an entire evening of Marcel’s cuisine at BreadBar’s recent December Hatchi event. The menu theme, was not surprisingly, the same as his catering company, “Modern Global Tastings”. Modern techniques included spherifications, sous vide and foams (just for us lucky Top Chef fans perhaps?). Global Tastings took our tastebuds around the world in one evening, and the cost was just $8 for each plate!

Hatchi at BreadBar is a “unique venture featuring a different guest chef every month preparing an original, one-night-only suite of eight plates, including six ’savory’ dishes and two ’sweet’ creations”. Hatchi means number eight in Japanese: 8 Plates offered at $8 each. Quite the bargain for what you get, and I try to attend each one.

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBiteMarcel’s guest chef Hatchi dinner was rather poignant, because this was one of the few times the general public got to taste HIS FOOD. Our table was filled with fellow foodies and friends including Marcel’s good pal, chef Ben Bailly (of Petrossian). Ben and Marcel previously worked together at Joël Robuchon, and it was hilarious watching them discuss each plate (sometimes whispering) throughout the evening.

As the night came to a close, the exhaustion was apparent on Marcel’s face, but more importantly… so was the pride, because it was all about HIS concept, HIS menu, HIS food (which was all phenomenal). I felt so grateful to be part of the delicious experience, and can’t wait for what’s next!

Modern Global Tastings:

“The edible alchemy presented here is a food movement representation intended to not only express a culinary philosophy but also to evoke a conscious perception of the natural shape and flavor of substances, colors, and textures that exist within the earth and have been interpreted by your sorcerer composer. May your appetite grow and your belly be satisfied.” ~ Marcel Vigneron 

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite
Pomegranate Blueberry Spherification (Amuse Bouche)

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite
Hamachi Sashimi: Espelette, Momo Chan, Kumquat, Salicornia

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite
Dayboat Scallop, Cauliflower Couscous, Kinome, Seaweed

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite
Langostine Ravioli: Tom Kai, Avocado Wrapped Mango, Petite Basil, Basil Seeds, Coconut Milk Powder

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite
Lyonaise Salad: Frisee, “Nesting” Egg, Bacon, Sherry Vinaigrette, Endive

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite
Broth being poured over MisoHoney Black Cod, Nasturtium textures, Sesame oil powder

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite
MisoHoney Black Cod, Nasturtium textures, Sesame oil powder

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite
Vadouvan Lamb: Flavors of Tzatziki, Lavosh, Pickled Onion, Sumac

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite
Grass Fed “Corned Beef”: Sous vide short rib, Textures of Corn, Saul’s Pastrami, Black Trumpets

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite
Souffle, Green Chartreuse with Orange Peel ice Cream with Almond Struesel

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite
Tiny chocolate curry and passion fruit Macaroons

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite
Cubed Vanilla Marshmallows

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite
Cocktail: “Coke in Manhattan” Bourbon, Carbonated Coca Cola Spherification (so fun!)

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite
Popcorn cooked in liquid nitrogen (aka “Dragon’s Breath”)

BreadBar Century City
10250 Santa Monica Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90067
310 277 3770

Dining Date: 12/17/09
At our table: Charles from 1HundredMiles, Robert, Andrew, Bob from TheBaubShow, Hanh from HungryHungryHanh, Charles from @EpicureImports, Chef Ben Bailly from Petrossian

Check BreadBar’s website for upcoming Hatchi events

More of my visits to Hatchi dinners

At the Bazaar, MyLastBite.comFollow
@MarcelVigneron on Twitter

Marcel’s Bio on Top Chef


Marcel Caters for Exposed Book Launch Event w/ Jessica Alba

Chef Ben Bailly, Petrossian

The Bazaar by Jose Andres

Marcel’s autograph for my niece (& nephew too)

Check back soon for website info & details on Marcel’s Modern Global Catering Company

More Hatchi Photos on Flickr


Filed under Eating Out, Food Events (festivals, classes, etc.), Hot Chefs

She’s Truly Scrumptious!

Chef Waylynn Lucas at BreadBar’s Hatchi Series

I’m not a huge fan of desserts. I like sweet AND savory dishes, but when it comes to the end of a great meal, I’d rather settle into a daring cheese plate and a few bites of fruit. My husband Peter on the other hand is, in fact, a DESSERT FREAK and he’ll even eat chocolate with his morning coffee if we have it in the house.

I used to eat desserts just because Peter ordered them, but since we dine out so much, I simply had to cut back on something (and it wasn’t going to be cocktails!). It came down to this: If I don’t absolutely LOVE and CRAVE it, I’m not wasting calories just because it’s there.

Cake is what you make it! MyLastBite.comFor my birthday last March, my sister even made me a meatloaf & mashed potato cake. When I first opened the cake box, I thought it was a mistake! My family knows I don’t have a sweet tooth, so I was doubly shocked to see the beautifully decorated dessert. It turned out to be the best birthday meat cake EVER!

So, since I’m not a dessert connoisseur, why in the world would I sit down for an evening of just DESSERTS at BreadBar’s Hatchi? Well… because I happen to be a SUPER fan of pastry chef Waylynn Lucas.

If you dined at the Patisserie at The Bazaar by José Andrés during the first nine months of opening, then you probably tasted Waylynn’s amazing creations. My favorites were the “Nitro Coconut Floating Island”, “Beet Meringue with Berries”, and white chocolate POPROCKS! For these special dinners out, I definitely have at least a taste of the exquisite desserts offered.

Bazaar Coconut Island, MyLastBite.comWaylynn is not only a talented pastry chef, but she’s also an absolute delight to be around. During each visit to the Bazaar (15 when I stopped counting), she always spent a little extra time with my family and friends whenever we ate in the Patisserie. My niece and nephews have even elevated her to “Wonka Status”, because when they speak about Waylynn, it’s like they’re talking about the fictional candy maker. Although I’d personally describe Waylynn as more like “Truly Scrumptious”, the beautiful (and charming) daughter of the candy factory owner in “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang”!

At a recent BreadBar Hatchi guest-chef event, Waylynn presented a menu titled, “Favorite Childhood Flavors in a Sophisticated New Way”, and it did not disappoint. We invited four, sugar lovin’ friends to join us for the sweet feast and there were “oohs and aahs” all around the table.

Waylynn at Hatchi, MyLastBite.comI tasted each of the eight dishes, and my two favorites (I had seconds!) were the “Lemon Meringue Pie” and “PB and J”.

The best part, for all of us, was that each of Waylynn’s creations took us right back to our childhoods (with even just one bite). It was a wonderful evening of laughing, sharing memories AND great cocktails too!

As a kid I dreamt about having just desserts for dinner (didn’t we all?), so it was a real treat to have the talented and truly scrumptious Waylynn Lucas make this grade-school dream come true.

“Favorite Childhood Flavors in a Sophisticated New Way”
by Chef Waylynn Lucas

Waylynn at Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
Strawberry Shortcake: Nitro Frozen Vanilla Custard, Fresh Strawberries, Vanilla Genoise, Thai Basil

Waylynn at Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
Lemon Meringue Pie: Fresh Berries, Cookie Crumble, Pop Rocks

Waylynn at Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
Creamsicle: Vanilla Bean Ice Cream, Mandarin sorbet, Buttermilk Cake

Waylynn at Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
PB&J: Peanut Butter and Jelly Filled Beignets, Milkshake Shooters

Waylynn at Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
Bao Zhong and Kenya Gichathaini (palate cleansers), Molten Chocolate Cake with Banana Brulee Pudding and Hazelnut Praline with Milk Sorbet, Candies.

Waylynn at Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
Fudgesicle: Frozen Chocolate, Mint Sponge, Peppermint Glaciers

Waylynn at Hatchi, MyLastBite.comg
Pudding: Twisted Milk Chocolate, Coffee Ice Cream, Toffee

Waylynn at Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
Candy, Candy, Candy: Lollipops, Caramel, Marshmallow, Pate de Fruit, Bonbon

Waylynn at Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
Old Fashioned: Maker’s Mark, lemon and orange essence, Angostura’s aromatic bitters.

Waylynn at Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
Waylynn at Work

Waylynn at Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
Peter and Waylynn

If you missed Waylynn at Breadbar, you can visit her at the Penthouse, in Santa Monica (in the Huntely Hotel). Website

About Hatchi:
Hatchi at BreadBar is a “unique venture featuring a different guest chef every month preparing an original, one-night-only suite of eight plates, including six ’savory’ dishes and two ’sweet’ creations”. Hatchi means number eight in Japanese: 8 Plates offered at $8 each. Check BreadBar’s website for upcoming Hatchi events (link below). 

Pastry Chef Waylynn Lucas, MyLastBite.comBreadBar Century City
10250 Santa Monica Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90067
310 277 3770

Dining Date: 11/19/09
Sweet even spent with: Jayson, Devon, Ram, Mark & Noelle! 

All my Hatchi Visits

All my Waylynn Photos on Flickr

Mentioned Above:

The “Truly Scrumptious” Song! 

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

Willy Wonka

The Bazaar by José Andrés 


Filed under Eating Out, Food Events (festivals, classes, etc.), Hot Chefs

BREADBAR’s Hatchi Series: 8 for $8

What is Hatchi?

Voltaggio @ Hatchi, MyLastBite.comA little background (by LA Weekly):
“The Hatchi series, a collaboration between Breadbar and chef Noriyuki Sugie, began this past June and showcases a guest chef the last Thursday of each month. The series menu features 8 small plate courses at $8 a dish–“hatchi” means 8 in Japanese–and guests order a minimum of three dishes. The chefs, who are picked for their rising-star talent, are given a budget and must stick within it; Sugie is on hand to mentor, watch, and (one hopes) taste a few dishes. The previous chefs to run the floor were Debbie Lee (The Next Food Network Star, now at Gyenari), Michael Voltaggio (now chef de cuisine at The Langham) and Santa Barbara-based private chef Roberto Cortez.”

I love these “guest chef” dinners, and do my best to attend each one. So far I’ve been to three (links below), and highly recommend it! It’s just a really comfortable and inexpensive way to try out a chef’s new menu.

Michael Voltaggio at Hatchi
Voltaggio @ Hatchi, MyLastBite.com

Robert Cortez at Hatchi
Cortez @ Hatchi, MyLastBite.com

Remi Lauvand at Hatchi
Lauvand @ Hatchi, MyLastBite.com

Waylynn Lucas at Hatchi
Waylynn at Hatchi, MyLastBite.com

Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi
Marcel Vigneron at Hatchi, MyLastBite

Upcoming Events: 1/28/10 Ricardo Zarate
Chef at Mo Chica
Hatchi Theme: Peru Much Gusto

voltaggio top chef

BreadBar Century City
10250 Santa Monica Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90067
(310) 277 3770
WebSite (check for upcoming Hatchi dinners)

Follow BreadBar on Twitter @BreadBar_LA

Mentioned above:

LA Weekly

Chef Noriyuki Sugie


Chef Voltaggio – Dining Room at the Langham

Chef Lauvand – Cafe Pierre

Chef Roberto Cortez

Chef Debbie Lee – Gyenari

voltaggio married wife girlfriend michael voltaggio’s top chef


Filed under Eating Out

Remi Lauvand – Hatchi Dinner

My first taste of chef Remi Lauvand’s food was back in February of 2008, when he was chef de cuisine at Michel Richard’s Citrus at Social in Hollywood. Peter and I ate there several times before chef Lauvand left in August of the same year.

Chef Remi Lauvand, MyLastBiteThe very first dish I ordered at Citrus was the Mosaic, a “Carpaccio of Surf, Turf and Earth”. It was so beautiful (and of course delicious) that I didn’t want to touch the plate at first. I also remember seriously annoying the diners next to me with my continuous photo-taking (I’m better at it now).

Peter’s favorite dish at Citrus was actually dessert. A chocolate (and if I remember correctly, hazelnut) layered cake with a crunchy layer called, the Kit Kat Bar.

On September 24th, chef Lauvand was the guest chef for “Hatchi at BreadBar” in Century City (see below for more info). Peter and I met up with a few friends and slid into a semi-private booth inside the restaurant. We loved the coziness of our table, but unfortunately many of my photos were awful because it became too dark (even with the help of iPhone lights)! My apologies to chef Lauvand, and also my thanks for a truly wonderful dinner.

Chef Remi Lauvand’s Hatchi Dinner
Endless Summer

Lauvand @ Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
House Cured Tasmanian Trout: Charentais Melon, Tarragon & Lemon Hatch Pepper Relish

Lauvand @ Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
Crisp Pork Belly Salad: Parsnips, Jalapeno Sauce

Lauvand @ Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
Foie “Parfait” Pain D’epices, Black Mission Figs

Lauvand @ Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
Top: Barramundi, Lady Peas, Watercress, Prosciutto, Basil Jus. Bottom: Handmade Farfalle, Octopus, Chicken Oysters, Tomatoes

Lauvand @ Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
Top: Mini Tropezienne, Santa Barbara Pistachios, Chocolate Cracker. Bottom: Penryn Orchard Pear, Crepe Sofia Goat Cheese, Young Walnuts

No photo of Slow Cooked Veal Breast, Carrottes Rissolees, Arugula (too out of focus)

Lauvand @ Hatchi, MyLastBite.com
Hatchi at BreadBar is a “unique venture featuring a different guest chef every month preparing an original, one-night-only suite of eight plates, including six ’savory’ dishes and two ’sweet’ creations”. Hatchi means number eight in Japanese: 8 Plates offered at $8 each.

BreadBar Century City
10250 Santa Monica Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90067
310 277 3770
WebSite (check for upcoming Hatchi dinners)

Dining Date: 9/24/09
With Krissy, Charles & Robert 

Chef Lauvand on Twitter @Reminou

Where is chef Lauvand now? At Cafe Pierre in Manhattan Beach!

L.A. Times writes about Remi Lauvand’s new menu

More about Chef Lauvand

Citrus at Social Website

Roberto Cortez, Hatchi dinner

Michael Voltaggio, Hatchi dinner


Filed under Eating Out