Joseph Tafoya

My name is Joseph Tafoya, and I am a Chef from the City of Santa Fe Springs here in Los Angeles County. I have been around the culinary industry my entire life, thanks to my Tio Frankie’s restaurant, Super Tortas, and my Mother’s catering company. At my Tio’s restaurant, I was shown how hard and demanding the restaurant industry can be, from washing dishes to slinging tortas and tacos on the plancha. While working there, I was surrounded by some of the hardest-working people I have met to this day. I can always hear my mother telling me, “You better work like you don’t have any fucking papers.” She believes we honor ourselves and those who carved the path before us by passing on the work ethic and entrepreneurialism that they found essential for success. My Mother taught me the fundamentals of running a catering business through her company, which later influenced me to start my own taco catering business. During High School, I used the money I made selling chips, candy, and drinks out of a duffel bag to buy a Taco Cart. Soon I began catering events throughout high school and college. During this time, I used my taco cart as a way to make some extra cash; it was during this season that I fell in love with more than the profit. I was beginning to crave the craft.

In my Junior year of college, I began working for Chef Miles, where I learned the artistic side of the culinary industry. Here at his company, I have been educated on how food can be appreciated and enjoyed rather than simply filling someone’s hunger. At Fourfortyfour, I was first taught how to master the basics of kitchen prep, which has been the most humbling yet rewarding experience of my life. Once I was effective and precise in kitchen prep, Chef Miles began to teach me what it takes to become a chef. This training included innumerable farmers market trips, countless prep hours, and numerous catering events. Most recently, I have been working as a Sous Chef for Chef Miles, where I am currently curating menus, creating prep lists, selecting ingredients, and managing staff and events. On May 1st, I will be attending the DTLA dinner club for the third time, and I could not be more grateful. My first experience at the Dinner Club was on October 12th, 2022, as a kitchen prep, where I assisted in washing dishes and plating. My performance at the dinner club impressed Chef Miles so much that soon after I began my training to become a line cook. 364 days after my first dinner club, I came into Josh’s apartment as Fourfortyfour’s Sous Chef, where our team executed a four-course dinner. As my third experience cooking at the Dinner Club, I get the privilege of joining as a guest chef. I’m equally anxious, thrilled, and eager to seize this opportunity and impress with a menu that speaks to not only my food style but also that of those who came before me.