Jeremy Fox promises 'the Prada of beets' at new LA restaurant
Fox’s new place, Birdie G's, will pair comfort dishes with the finest vegetables Californian farms produce
Jeremy Fox first made his name cooking at Manresa, chef David Kinch’s highly regarded farm-to-table restaurant in a Los Gatos, California. It was also the place where Fox learned to love vegetables.
“The produce coming into the kitchen from Cynthia Sandberg’s 22-acre Love Apple Farms fuelled serious creativity among the chefs,” Fox says in our new book, The Garden Chef.
“Herbs, flowers, and vegetables would arrive in the kitchen, hours after being harvested at their absolute peak. And when you’ve seen first-hand the experience and patience that has gone into growing a plant, you don’t want to waste a single bit of it. You want to highlight it; you don’t want it to play just a supporting role on the plate.”
Now, as he prepares to launch his own LA restaurant, Fox is focusing once more on the plants on the plates. The new venture will be called Birdie G’s, and will open in June in Santa Monica, Los Angeles County.
The name pays tribute to his daughter, Birdie, and his grandmother, Gladys. Birdie G's cuisine will be American, and will draw on Fox’s Jewish roots, as well as his childhood penchant for comfort food; Salisbury steak, moules frites, and pot roasts will all feature.
However, vegetables will also play a big part. Fox and his fellow chefs will cook sunchokes (Jerusalem artichokes), peas and fava beans when they’re in season, as well as more esoteric varieties.
“He is, for example, using Badger Flame beets, which he says are like the Prada of beets,” says Food & Wine magzine. “The seeds come from Dan Barber’s Row 7, and Aaron Choi of Girl and Dug Farms grows the super-sweet beets locally for Fox.”
That might sound like a showy bit of veg for so casual and comforting a restaurant. But Fox is confident this high-quality produce won’t interrupt the dining experience.
“What’s important to me is that the restaurant should be what as many people as possible want to eat without feeling like you’re just playing to the crowds,” he says.
To find out more about how the world’s most prominent chefs are turning their attention towards the vegetable patch, and working great produce into their cooking, order a copy of The Garden Chef here.