Curtis Stone Talks New Beverly Hills Restaurant
By Lesley Balla
August 27, 2013
Photo by: Lesley Balla
One of the biggest nights of the Los Angeles Food & Wine weekend was the Live on Grand event, and not just because Gavin Degraw was performing. Curtis Stone, current host of Top Chef Masters, played host, and at least for the hordes of women that walked up to him for photos and autographs (almost all women, very few, if any men), that was the reason to be there. The tall handsome Aussie was perfectly at home on the red carpet, at his sold-out cooking demo, in his booth where he helped garnish and serve ceviche, and on the stage where he introduced the band. Stone has confirmed that he's opening a restaurant in Beverly Hills, in the former Pici Enoteca space on South Beverly Drive, and was kind enough to stop drizzling olive oil and sprinkling salt for a moment to talk TCM and tell us about the still-unnamed spot.
Zagat: The show’s going well so far this season.
Curtis Stone: It sure is. We’re in season five, we’re in episode four or five at the moment, and it’s flying. Everyone’s loving it. It’s an incredible season. We shot it here in LA, which is really special. It’s an incredible food scene down here, so it was a lot of fun.
Zagat: Are you surprised at who has left so far and who hasn’t?
CS: There are so many good chefs. We lost Richard Sandoval in week two. The guy’s got 30-odd restaurants. I mean, you don’t get there by accident. You get there by talent, and you’re good and a hard worker. You never know how the competition is going to shake out. Sometimes it’s just that passion and determination that’s required.
Zagat: What are you serving today?
CS: So it’s a chile ceviche with avocado mousse with Asian flavor. So soy, sesame, coconut, ponzu. Very Asian influenced, but a ceviche.
Zagat: Tell us what we can expect from your new LA restaurant. Is this your first in the States?
CS: Yeah, it sure is. I want to do a different ingredient each month, and we’ll do seven or eight courses around that one ingredient. So it’s a tasting menu. So the start of the year we’ll line up the different ingredients and we’ll cook with them. We’ll show the ingredient at its best.
Zagat: Do you have a name for the restaurant yet?
Zagat: When will we see it?
CS: Either at the end of this year or right at the start of next year.
Zagat: Since you’re living here, favorite local restaurant right now?
CS: In Culver City there’s a place called Waterloo & City. I just love eating there.
Zagat: When you get out of town, where do you love to visit and why?
CS: Chicago. There’s just so much going on there from a food perspective.
Zagat: Why open a spot in LA?
CS: Truthfully? It’s a beautiful food scene, but most importantly I fell in love with a gorgeous girl from LA who just happens to live here.
Zagat: Well, that happens.
CS: Yes it does! I couldn't be happier here.