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5 Questions for Rémi Lauvand

December 10, 2012|By Betty Hallock
  • Rémi Lauvand is executive chef of Le Ka downtown.
Rémi Lauvand is executive chef of Le Ka downtown. (Le Ka )

Rémi Lauvand is executive chef of 3-month-old Le Ka in downtown Los Angeles. The native of Périgord, France, worked his way through Michelin-starred restaurants in New York, including Gerard Pangaud, La Grenouille, Le Cirque and Montrachet. He moved to California and eventually spearheaded the reopening of Michel Richard’s acclaimed but short-lived Citrus at Social Hollywood. Lauvand has since consulted at Rivera and Cafe Pierre, and now is offering a refreshingly meaty and mostly-French menu at Le Ka: pork short ribs, braised rabbit leg, glazed bone marrow with garlic flan, terrines and rillettes, and onion soup gratinée, with a few wild boar albondigas thrown in.

What’s coming up next on your menu? Still trying to get a good source for pig's blood to make boudin noir. Coming soon.

Latest ingredient obsession? Not really an obsession but I really like cardoons in the winter. It is not a common ingredient and it sure is a hard sell, but eventually it will catch up.

The one piece of kitchen equipment you can’t live without, other than your knives? No doubt it is my kitchen scale. How would I season my foie gras terrine otherwise? Just kidding!

The last cookbook you read — and what inspired you to pick it up? I am not so much into reading new cookbooks anymore. There is so much to learn from old ones and reinterpret. I love getting back to my old Ali-Bab “Gastronomie Pratique: Etudes Culinaires Suivies du Traitement de l'Obésité,” and from time to time still Harold McGee’s “On Food and Cooking” is one of my favorites.

What chef has most influenced you? Many have contributed and influenced in many ways, however there is no doubt Daniel Boulud and Sotta Khunn have had a major impact on the way I cook and think about food.

Le Ka, 800 W. 6th St., Los Angeles, (213) 688-3000, www.lekarestaurant.com.

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