4 Female Chefs to Know in LA

All March long we’ve been featuring history-making women in honor of Women’s History Month across our digital and social channels. We want to do that offline and in real life as well, so we’re inviting you out to Winsome on Thursday, March 29th to celebrate female contemporaries making waves right where we are.

Join the Darling team, your peers and make new connections around The Long Table: Los Angeles while engaging in guided discussions and enjoying a delicious meal created by four talented women.

Representing some of the best culinary talent in Los Angeles, here’s who you need to know:

Leslie Mialma

Leslie Mialma

A native Angeleno, Pastry Chef Leslie Mialma brings her diverse background and love for Southern California culture and ingredients to Echo Park’s favorite neighborhood eatery, Winsome. Named one of Bon Appetit Magazine’s 50 Best New Restaurants, her whimsical menu has become known for its global flavors and technique. Signature items include the Matcha Concha, a Mexican sweet bread with fluffy brioche dough inside a matcha candy shell; the Baked ‘Japan,’ containing La Colombe “Corsica” Semifreddo, Miso Butterscotch, and Nigori Sake Fondue; and her ever-changing menu of house made pies which range from vegan coconut to her classic chocolate chess pie.

Kuniko Yagi

kuniko yagi

Chef Kuniko hails from a fine dining background, including Michelin-starred renowned restaurant, Sona, where she was Executive Chef until its closing in 2010. She has also pioneered popular Los Angeles eateries like Comme Ca and Hinoki & the Bird in Century City. She is also recognized as a TV favorite during her time on Bravo’s Top Chef, as well as countless mentions in top publications including Food & Wine, ELLE magazine, Esquire, Bon Appetit, Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Magazine and LA Weekly. Pikunico will be her first project that represents her sentiments of both her past and present. When not at the stove, Kuniko spends her time surfing, knitting and walking her German Shepherd in Venice Beach.

Nicole Rucker

nicole rucker

Nicole Rucker, formerly the Pastry Chef of the Gjelina Group (including G.T.A. and Gjusta), is a chef and author based in Los Angeles and the owner of Rucker’s Pie and Cofax Coffee. She is known internationally for her rustic desserts and has won awards for her homespun pies. In 2012, she won blue ribbons in the National Pie Championship, KCRW Good Food Pie contest and a Star Chef award for baking. She is currently finishing her first cookbook, due to be published in 2019 by Penguin Random House, as well as preparing to open her debut bakery and restaurant, Fiona.

Shirley Chung

After immigrating to America from Beijing for college, Chef Shirley Chung worked in Silicon Valley before deciding to follow her passion for food. Classically trained in French and Italian cuisine, she worked and opened restaurants for Thomas Keller, Guy Savoy and Jose Andres. After she opened CarneVino as Chef de Cuisine for BBHG, CarneVino earned multiple awards for Best Steak House internationally. Prior to being a finalist on season 11 of Top Chef in New Orleans, she held the Executive Chef Position at China Poblano, by Jose Andres, which was nominated for the Best New Restaurant Award by the James Beard Foundation in 2011. While working at China Poblano, she fell in love with Mexican cuisine and learned more about her own heritage. In 2014, Shirley opened her restaurant in Orange County, Twenty Eight, featuring modern Chinese cuisine. After recently being named the runner up of Top Chef season 14, Shirley’s currently working on opening her next concept in Culver City, Ms. Chi, an all-day café with her signature dumplings and other Chinese snacks.

We hope to see and dine with you in Los Angeles on Thursday, March 29th! Tickets available HERE

Feature Image via Caroline Attwood

This post is brought to you by the Darling Team! To learn more about who we are, please visit our Meet Our Team page.

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