Chef Christophe Émé
The Michelin Guide’s return to Los Angeles has been on the tip of everyone’s tongue this spring, as the renowned rating system hasn’t graced the city since 2010. Back then, chef Christophe Émé—who trained under several European powerhouse chefs such as Gérard Rabaey, Marc Veyrat, Michel Rostang, Philippe Braun and Philippe Legendre—owned the now-shuttered Ortolan, which earned him his first Michelin star. Before his debut solo venture, Émé was the executive chef at L’Orangerie (another area institution of the early aughts). He’s recently made his highly anticipated return to the food scene with new spot KASS Wine Bar + Restaurant.
The beet salad at KASS served with black lentils and Comté cheese
The 40-seat eatery sits just a few blocks away from République on La Brea in a space that’s admittedly flipped quite a few times over the years. But if anyone’s capable of making things stick, it’s Émé. At KASS, there’s a strong focus on the wine program, which was conceived by consultant Taylor Parsons, who’s been responsible for creating leading lists at République, Spago, Mozza and, most recently, The Manufactory. He’s put an emphasis on French wines, naturally, with bottles from the Loire Valley playing particularly well to the French-inspired food.
Émé doesn’t skimp on extravagant French ingredients, like beurre baratté, (Normandy’s famously luxurious butter), truffles, bone marrow, morels and more. But that’s not to say the food is all heavy. There’s beet salad with black lentils and Comté; tuna sashimi; and a seared Maine scallop with white beans and chorizo. Yet, the space itself, which features an open kitchen, isn’t at all stuffy. Welcome to the neighborhood! 320 S. La Brea Ave., 323.413.2299
Photography by: acuna hansen