Past Chefs & Special Guests

Chef Grace Buschke

Chef Grace is a “community-taught” pop up fanatic. The diverse kitchens, fresh menus and dynamic teams are reminiscent of the family style cooking that influences her Island/fusion cuisine. After spending a year learning the art of butchery from the master butchers at McCall’s Meat & Fish, she ventured into cooking privately, and later - publicly! She has worked with local stars the likes of Pyet DeSpain, Nyesha Arrington, Rashida Holmes (to name a few), and had a stint as the interim head chef for a new Los Feliz restaurant. She is making her independent debut as the headlining chef for the DTLA dinner club’s season finale! 

Chef Miles Robins
Chef Miles Robbins was born and raised in the city of Los Angeles, CA where he would eventually graduate high school in the year 2017. Immediately following graduation, he enrolled at the International Culinary Center in New York City. During his time there, he worked as an intern with the Culinary Collective (also known as Ghetto Gastro) and later went on to work at Michelin Starred New York eatery, Carbone. After some time, Chef Miles returned home to work at the original location of the world-famous Jon and Vinny’s Restaurant in West Hollywood, CA. He was later transferred to Brentwood, CA to assist in the opening and operation of the new Jon and Vinny’s Restaurant location. 
At the end of 2019, Miles was inspired to create his own cuisine utilizing the many skills he had learned over the last two years and, after doing a number of apprenticeships, most notably at Sean Brocks’s HUSK in Nashville Tennessee, and the Michelin-starred, Ikoyi in London, Miles started his own catering company called FourFortyFour.
Chef Raina Pore

Raina Poré of Detroit, MI, is currently based in Los Angeles and has been servicing the greater Los Angeles area through her company, Poré Private Chefs LLC, for the last 6 years. She got her start working in the entertainment Industry as an Artist and Songwriter, which is how she built her network of clients. Raina is known for her quick-witted personality , attention to detail, and her ability to work well under pressure, all while creating mouthwatering dishes with a Southern-Style approach.

As a self- taught Chef, Raina takes pride in facing challenges head on, being committed to her craft and constantly learning new techniques. Her love for creating & experimenting with flavors has led to her new sought-after business venture, an all-purpose seasoning blend, called TASTE.

Growing up, Chef Raina spent a lot of time in the kitchen, helping her grandparents and working in their family restaurant to gain knowledge and experience. While she loves to host & bring people together for a great time, cooking has always been second nature to her. Most of Raina’s best dishes are attached to her favorite childhood memories & some stemming from her experiences while traveling the US, in pursuit of other creative endeavors, Chef Raina is always eager to expand her pallet. She believes each plate is a canvas and gives the opportunity to pair art with her food. Her passion and dedication has led to her cooking for young music industry professionals and well-known industry vets. Raina has truly created a lane for herself as a superstar Chef. She is currently writing her first CookBook, which will be available in the near future.

Chef Sara Frost

Chef Sara Frost is the founder and head-chef of ‘Spooning With Sara’. Growing up in a family full of food lovers, packed kitchens and tons of fun parties, Sara has always had a knack for gathering friends and family together around food and fun. It was her instinctual love for bringing people together that led her in 2018 to launch, ‘Spooning With Sara’ into the full-service event making business that it is today.

Spooning With Sara’ has since grown to include weekly meal-delivery services (for 17+ weekly clients), ticketed pop-up dinner series, full-scale event catering/production, recipe development, brand partnerships, private-chef work and event planning. She has also worked internationally, but is currently based in Los Angeles and works in LA and NY.

Chef Benjamin Secor
I'm Chef Ben or Ben Secor, from Baltimore Maryland. I went to culinary school in Maryland & helped open up a fine dining restaurant right out of school for Chef Thomas Zippelli who worked under Thomas Keller & Daniel Humm. After 9 nine months I picked up everything and moved to Los Angeles. I've worked in a bunch of places here but most notable was Scratch Bar & Kitchen a 23 course fine dining restaurant. I was the sous chef there up until COVID shut our doors. Scratch Bar is owned by Phillip Frankland Lee who just recently won 2 Michelin Stars. During quarantine I picked up baking and starting working at a bakery which I now help run called Hasi Bread in studio city & I also work with The Herbal Chef, a fine dining cannabis infused private chef service. 
Chef Pyet DeSpain

Pyet DeSpain is a Native American and Mexican American award winning social media and traveling private chef. She is the first winner of Gordon Ramsay's new groundbreaking TV show, Next Level Chef on Fox. In 2021, Pyet was named seventh best private chef in Los Angeles by Entrepreneur Magazine.  Her life's work is dedicated to creating Indigenous Fusion Cuisine where she combines the food of heritage - both Native American and Mexican American. Pyet's passion is to uplift indigenous culture and traditions via storytelling, traveling and cooking from the soul. Check out her website -

Chef Dean Patrick Ramirez

Chef/Co-Owner of The Lone Crow (moto-food-story) and Chef and Curator of Birdhaus Beer Garden, both located in Union City Ca in the Bay Area. Passionate about his own Filipino culture and learning the dishes behind them, Dean creates gourmet street food and brings the feeling of home to each dish. Island inspired cuisine is what Dean brings to the table using both modern and traditional techniques to his dishes. It's all about community, “I work closely with the Union City farmers market and utilize all local farmers for our restaurant.” Bringing collaborations to a small city he grew up in, while bringing new life into the city.

Putting a twist on traditional dishes is what Dean and The Lone Crow is about - Riding choppers, making badass dishes and sharing a story through food to remember.

The Lone Crow started during the pandemic after getting laid off all his gigs. Having the downtime and going through the mental roller coaster brought light to create something himself and share his culture. Taking everything he’s learned in 15 years in the food industry into something special for his hometown has been the goal, but also bringing it to the world to share how crazy and passionate he is.

“I can go on and give you a amazing background/culinary story, but if you wanna know more fuck a screen come have dinner with me. Mahalo Salamat.”

Find him on Instagram at - @DeanPatrickRamirez @The.Lone.Crow

Chef Bre Jackson

Having worked her way through some of LA’s best restaurants like Jon and Vinny’s, Petit Trois, Broken Spanish, Bottega Louie and more, Chef Bre is now working as an independent chef. Using culinary influence from her Southern roots and LA background, the trained pastry chef is a triple threat in the kitchen who loves to seamlessly fuse different cultures and cuisines together on a plate. She has been featured in the LA Times and BuzzFeed.

Chef Danielle Duran Zecca

California-born Chef Danielle , knew from a young age that she wanted to be a chef. She was raised in an environment emphasizing the rich variety of Mexican food. After graduation from high school, she attended California’s Le Cordon Bleu School of Culinary Arts where she focused on classic French cuisine and graduated with honors.

After working with some of the best California chefs, including Walter Manzke, Neal Fraser, and Sang Yoon, Chef Danielle moved to New York City, where she worked at Le Bernardin, followed by the Modern, where she was quickly promoted to sous chef. While at the Modern, she was offered the opportunity to be the Chef de Cuisine at Vespa, a restaurant on New York City’s upper east side, where under her leadership and creativity, Vespa was recognized as the best neighborhood restaurant. Given an opportunity she couldn’t refuse, Chef Danielle left Vespa to be Sous Chef at the highly acclaimed Le Coucou, the recipient of the James Beard Award for Best New Restaurant in 2017.

While cooking in New York, Chef Danielle competed in two Food Network cooking shows: “Kitchen Casino” in which she took first place and “Beat Bobby Flay” where she was inches away from “Slaying the Flay”.

Her style of cooking is “MexItalian” which subtly combines the Mexican food influences of her heritage, with her Italian husband’s heritage. They created a pop up called Amiga Amore, which was just featured at the James Beard House this past February.

Chef Danielle is now back home and more eager than ever to cook the food that comforts her, combining her appreciation for organic and sustainable ingredients with the technique and expertise she has learned along the way. She is currently catering at her own company “ChefDDZ Catering” while running her hot sauce company El Chorro, and hosting with her husband the pop up Amiga Amore in LA, while they build there first brick and mortar in Highland Park. Over the past two years Amiga Amore has achieved many accolades including write ups in LA times , Eater LA, Infatuation LA, Thrillist , The Beet, Pop Sugar, What Now, and most recently Forbes.

Chef Danielle’s Pop up will showcase her unique cuisine, “MexItalian” which combines exceptional quality ingredients, many made from scratch, with Italian and Mexican influences. Come hungry and Expect to be amazed!

Chef Jerk Muva

Hailing from the Bronx, New York, Ashley Morgan, better known as Jerk Muva, was born to a Jamaican mother and African-American father. Ashley was introduced to two distinct cultures from an early age, and there she developed an appreciation for the nuances that made each culture unique and special in its own way. Her curious nature and love of experimentation led her to the kitchen. She enjoyed watching her mother pour her heart into a delicious meal for the family, while also receiving a front-row seat to the more professional side of cooking through her father’s catering business. Ashley soon developed a love for cooking herself and learned very early on, the power that food has to bring people together and create a shared experience of joy.

In 2015 Ashley’s career as a travel nurse took her across the country to sunny California. Her life in California started off in Santa Barbara and eventually she settled in Los Angeles. On a personal journey and far from home, Ashley was inspired to pursue her creative passion and find ways to bring people together through great food with a touch of love. This desire was the catalyst for the creation of Jerk Muva’s Creations. A company born to feed the mind, body and soul. The Jerk is representative of Ashley’s Jamaican upbringing and love for that culture, while Muva represents her desire to empower women. Being a product of two cultural backgrounds, naturally, Ashley adopted a fusion style that has led her to develop delicious and unique staple dishes such as her“Jerk Chicken Egg Rolls” and “Oxtail Grilled-Cheese Sandwich”.

To this day, she continues to push the envelope with her dishes while maintaining the fundamental culinary principles she learned in her formal training as a Chef, from the New School of Cooking school. So whether it’s at one of her pop-up events on Sundays or if you book her for catering or private chef engagement, you will feel the essence of Jerk Muva in everything this fearless Chef has to offer the world. 

Chef Dan Rabilwongse


Since his childhood growing up in Los Angeles in a household of Thai immigrants, Dan always had a knack for cooking. His mother was famous for her fermented pork sausage (Naem) recipe which she sold to local Thai markets in the 1980's, one Dan guards with his life to this today. After graduating from Loyola Marymount University and subsequently attending culinary school, Dan began his career as a cook in a 2 Michelin star kitchen at Urasawa. After learning under chef Hiro at Urasawa, Dan's longest tenure came under Thomas Keller at Bouchon in Beverly Hills, where Dan mastered French technique in a highly competitive and rigorous kitchen, working his way up to Executive Sous Chef. After spending the better part of a decade at Bouchon, Dan left to return to his first passion, Japanese food, this time at the highly lauded Hayato and Tsubaki. Now, he leads the kitchen at Tartine on Sycamore where you'll occasionally see nuggets of Thai or Japanese culinary influence find their way onto the menu next to the more classic croissants and quiches.

Chef Nigel Solancho

I’m Chef Nigel Solancho from Quezon City, Philippines. Currently chef at Le Petit Paris in downtown Los Angeles. I grew up being highly influenced and inspired by Asian and Los Angeles street food/art with modern French technique style of cooking. I traveled to Thailand and learned under Asia’s #1 restaurant, 2 star Michelin at Gaggan Restaurant in Bangkok, Thailand.

Chef Sammi Tarantino

Private chef for Wholesam. Been cooking for 6 years, in restaurants but mainly in home clients. My style of cooking is farmers market driven seasonal ingredients making healthyish food that you crave.

Chef Patrick Saphyakhajon

Pat Saphyakhajon is personal chef and caterer under his brand name Another Pat Creation, Chef Pat has been immersed in the Pop Up dining scene all over Los Angeles for the past 4 years which includes Pop Up dining events such as Feastown Session: Dinner & Story Series, To Live & Dine In LA hosted by Drunken Devil, Grassfed’s Taste Buds series ‘Hummus and Hashish’ as well as ‘Tapas and Tokes’ just to name a few. One of Pats’ favorite past catering experience was cooking an Puerto Rican inspired menu for Louie Vega and EOL Soulfrito Band for Fusicology’s 15 year anniversary concert at the Ford Theatre. Another Pat Creation is about creating a memorable dining experience through food and culture presented in a fun and innovative way. 

Chef Ayo Cherry

"Being from the south, I love southern food. One day, to my chagrin, I was taken to a French restaurant. Reluctantly I looked over the menu and with the help of a few others I made my selection. In that moment my life was changed for the better. I discovered a whole new cuisine I didn’t know I would love. This discovery lead to interest in French culture and eventually ended with me going to a French culinary school. From something as simple as ordering coq au vin I became encouraged to learn more about the world, to travel, and lead a more enriched life. That moment is what I want to share with people. A transformative experience that centers around food."

Chef Nathan Santana


I love cooking on the heavy side of plant-based, even when I’m putting together a meat of fish based dish. I also enjoy the finer greens in life… I’m talking about cannabis of course. That’s why I co-founded Culture Create & Destroy—an underground cannabis pop-up series driven by local, seasonal produce and the *best* local cannabis available. My business partner is the is the Master Grower for Botafarm Genetics—producer of some of, if not the best, highest-grade, quality cannabis that is grown in Los Angeles.Together, we create a multi-layered experience inclusive of cannabis infused cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and tasting menus, paired with great smoke and great folks.

Pasta Master Joe Sasto

Joe Sasto brought his pasta prowess and attention-to-detail to Lazy Bear (SF) and continued to honor Bay Area product and producers with great reverence. At both Quince and Lazy Bear, Sasto has been an integral member of the team, impacting the rise from one to three, and one to two Michelin stars, respectively. When not in the kitchen, he can be found foraging along the nearby coast, rolling out pasta “fatto-a-mano,” fine tuning his mustache, or sharpening his winning skills on such competition shows as; The Food Network’s “Chopped." Most recently, Joe relocated to Los Angeles focusing on fresh handmade pasta, with influences from coastal Italy and the bounty of California.Last August, Joe left his post at Cal Mare, in Beverly Hills, to pursue his personal goal of opening his own restaurant, and is currently traveling the country hosting private events, cannabis dinners and pop-up feasts.

Hell's Kitchen Winner Scott Commings


Making his debut on Los Angeles’ dining scene, FOX’s “Hell’s Kitchen” season 12 winner Executive Chef Scott Commings helms the kitchen at Eve American Bistro, a feminine take on a traditional European-style bistro with modern-American and California influences. 

NBA Star & Entrepreneur John Salley


A frequent visitor to The DTLA Dinner Club, John is an amazing guest who has sponsored The Club through his vegan wine company The Vegan Vine. It's delicious, click the link and buy a bottle! We know he's a busy man, but we always love it when John can make a dinner party. 

Top Chef Master Susan Feniger


This AMAZING and talented chef was a part of the DTLA Community back in 1998 before it was cool with her iconic Ciudad, now the famous Border Grill. We were so lucky to be able to visit her restaurant for a full dinner and lesson on making churros!! We LOVE Susan, now go check out all her awesome restaurants

Top Chef Winner Illan Hall


Top Chef Season Two WINNER Ilan Hall was gracious enough to cook multiple dinners for us at The DTLA Dinner Club. He's got several restaurants around the country including our favorite ramen spot just a few black away at Grand Central Market - Ramen Hood!

Chef JP Torre


Torre, who moved to Los Angeles from Madrid three years ago, consulted on the menu of Eat Drink Americano in the Arts District. He also has helped establish hotels and restaurants in Europe -- including Pasada de Dragon and Posada de Leon in Madrid, Principe Forte di Marmi in Italy and establishments in Russia and Germany -- and plans to launch more projects in Southern California.

Chef Daniel Sheriff Shemtob


Winner of The Great Food Truck Race with his "Lime Truck" and founder of "TLT Foods" and DTLA's newest hot restaurant "HatchChef Daniel Sheriff Shemtob is a food phenom and we're crazy lucky to have him cooking for The DTLA Dinner Club. Check him out on his website.

Chef Leo Lamprides


Leo Lamprides is a Portuguese Greek American who was trained under chef David LeFevre when both were at the Water Grill, and was sous-chef for Michael Hung at Faith & Flower. Helen Li is an architect from Beijing who brings her home recipes to the business. The two combine and incorporate their backgrounds and experiences into their one-of-a-kind dishes, incorporating a pantheon of cuisines, from Hainan chicken to Uighur-style meat to Chinese risotto. 

Celebrity Chef Sam Udell


We're super lucky to have landed celebrity private chef Sami Udell for Dinner Club. She cooks for Ludacris, 2 Chainz, DeMarcus Cousins, and tons of other celebrities and NBA players. She loves vegetables and sustainable meats and you can always find her at the Farmer's Markets or experimenting in her kitchen. 

Chef Caesar Curiel


Chef Caesar is a longtime downtowner who has cooked everywhere from Preux and Proper to Hotel Figueroa. He's currently a private chef, catering for celebrities and events. 

Food Network's Arnold Myint


This Top Chef and Next Food Network Star contestant and chef/owner/partner of THREE restaurants and was the host of The Club while Josh was in Bali! A Nashville native, he cut his chops working in Jean Georges Vongerichten’s culinary empire. Click to visit his website for a peek inside his amazing world of food and fun.

Chef Keven Lee


Chef Keven Alan Lee, also known as “Cheven” amongst his patrons and associates, is an internationally recognized culinary mastermind who is revolutionizing the catering industry, one event at a time! Cheven specializes in internationally inspired cuisine with a focus on a modern farm to table approach.

Chef Andy Barbato


Chef Andy is new in town from Italy and cooked us a traditional home cooked meal.

Executive Chef Jason Fullilove


This former Executive Chef for Mark Peel at Campanile, was featured on Food Network, Esquire's Knife Fight and has worked for some of the best chefs in the world. We were super excited to get him as a chef for a Dinner Club event and you can find him now with his own restaurant Barbara Jean in the Fairfax neighborhood of LA.

The Four Seasons' Chef Hans Srijumnong

Chef Hans cooked up an incredible Four Seasons worthy six course menu that took him hours to prep and serve. Check out the timelapse on the Photos and Videos page of our site. He's now moved on to EveryTable helping to provide fast, delicious and healthy food for all.

Executive Chef Brian Cripps


After working for the famous Chef Ludo and before heading down south to run the culinary program for Pacci in Savannah, Chef Brian Cripps stopped in and cooked us an amazing meal at The DTLA Dinner Club!! We're so lucky to have gotten him before he left the best coast.

Josh Gray-Emmer


Your host of The DTLA Dinner Club, Josh is back from Bali and taking the baton back from amazing chef Chef Arnold Myint! He's the owner of BridGE, a Downtown Los Angeles centric consulting company, and a long time resident of the Historic Core neighborhood.

Gregory Garman


One of our special guests this summer, Gregory was our DJ from Colorado for the big Sunday Funday event this year. He's also played at The Sundance Film Festival, The Winter X-Games, Art Basel, The LiveNation JayZ afterparty and many more.

Markus Bold


Also a Downtown Los Angeles resident, Markus has a catering company specializing in quick comfort food done with his own personal flare. We were treated to buttermilk fried chicken and a homemade tangy asian sauce.