Masters of Taste 2017

Last Sunday at 1:30 p.m., the clouds opened at the iconic Rose Bowl in Pasadena less than two hours before hundreds of people were going to arrive for a 3 p.m., entrance to the second annual Masters of Taste.


It was sunny and dry by the time I arrived and strolled the 50-yard line feasting on some of the finest fare from L.A.’s top chefs and restaurants.  Here are 9 of my favorite Masters of Taste experiences –

Tony Esnault – Spring and Church and State – FullSizeRender-172

This esteemed chef made a fresh English pea soup adorned with carrots and a few drops of herbed oil. To learn more about his restaurants, click on these links – Church and State and Spring.

The Dirty Cookie –

The Dirty Cookie takes milk and cookies to a new level. Each cookie is handcrafted and delicately hand-coated with premium Belgian Chocolate. Each cookie can be filled with Milk, Vanilla Almond Milk, Cremes – Chocolate and Vanilla, Coconut Cold Brew, Soft-Serve
or Toasted Marshmallow. To learn more, go to The Dirty Cookie.



SpireWorks had one of the most colorful tables at the event. To learn why I think the Eagle Rock and Westwood locations are terrific fast, casual dining destinations click on this link to read my review SpireWorks.

INTRO Art Gallery & Chefs Table


I was so happy to see Michelin-Star Chef Paul Shoemaker from INTRO Art Gallery & Chef’s Table. He made his signature edible “dime bag” made with translucent Japanese rice paper filled with powdered foie gras, cocoa nibs and puffed rice. Shoemaker makes an elegant 12-course dinner every Friday and Saturday evening. It’s an exciting interactive dining experience of art, music and food. Shoemaker told me that he is popping up on the Westside and Venice showcasing his unique menu items. Check out my review of INTRO –

True Food Kitchen –

FullSizeRender-168For healthy options True Food Kitchen offered three tasty bites to hundreds of guests. Here’s my review of True Food Kitchen – True Food Kitchen.

Sprinkles –


Sprinkles Cupcake founder and pastry chef Candace Nelson is the founder started tthe world’s first cupcake bakery in Beverly Hills in 2005. Today, Sprinkles has locations nationwide, and a traveling Sprinklesmobile. In 2012, Sprinkles debuted the world’s first Cupcake ATM and recently Sprinkles Ice Cream. To learn more

Milk and Honey –


Milk and Honey offered Hawaiian Blast Wellness Bowls that were filled with a base of strawberry, blueberry, blackberry, raspberry and organic almond milk. The toppings included pineapple, coconut meat, honeydew, organic hemp granola, a piece of honeycomb and beautiful California grown organic edible flower. Click here to learn where Milk and Honey is located Milk and Honey.



I really liked this Kombucha created by Michael Faye. As a commercial photographer and  huge dog lover, his bottles have a photo of an adorable dog. His Kombucha is one of the undiluted, organic types . This probiotic is traditionally brewed with tea. It’s BPA-free, raw, gluten-free, and non GMO. Kombucha Dog is available at over 150 locations in bottles and on tap in markets, restaurants and bars in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Diego Counties – Kombuchadog.

strawberry, blueberry, blackberry, raspberry and organic almond milk

fresh strawberry, blueberry, blackberry, organic almond slices, organic hemp granola and organic shredded coconut

$10 regular – $13 large
kale, beets, cucumber and organic hemp milk

fresh honeydew melon, blueberry, banana, organic goji berries, organic hemp granola and organic shredded coconut

$10 regular – $13 large

banana, real california bee pollen, apple, organic goji berries, organic chia seeds and organic hemp milk

fresh strawberry, banana, blackberry, organic chia seeds, organic hemp granola and organic shredded coconut

$10 regular – $13 large

coconut cream, pineapple, mango and organic soy milk

fresh pineapple, honeydew, coconut meat, organic hemp granola and organic shredded coconut

$10 regular – $13 large

all include a piece of Real California Honeycomb and California Grown Organic Edible Flowers

community by offering street outreach, meals, shelter, housing, case management and career development. Last year they raised over $435,000 for Union Station Homeless Services, and this year Masters of Taste hopes to grow that number to $560,000. Some of this year’s Masters of Taste 2017 participating Culinary Masters and Restaurants include: 118 Degrees Chef Jenny Ross (Tarzana); Alexander’s Steakhouse Chef Matt Bata (Pasadena); Bacchus Kitchen & Eatery and Claude & Co. Chef Claud Beltran (Pasadena); Bone Kettle and Komodo Chef Erwin Tjahyadi (Pasadena and Los Angeles); CAST at the Viceroy Santa Monica Chef Larry Monaco (Santa Monica); Celestino Chef Calogero Drago (Pasadena); Church & State and Spring Chef Tony Esnault (Downtown Los Angeles); Crossings Chef Lalo Sanchez (South Pasadena); HACHÉ LA Chef Michael “Mick” Schepers (Silver Lake); HokePoke Chef Lauren Haas (Downtown Los Angeles); Hamasaku Chef Yoya Takahashi (Los Angeles); Hyperion Public Chef Paddy Aubrey (Silver Lake and Studio City); INTRO Art Gallery & Chef’s Table Chef Paul Shoemaker (North Hollywood); Little Beast Chef Jose Perez (Eagle Rock); Magnolia House Chef Evan Colter (Pasadena); Mama Lion Chef Michael Hung (Koreatown); Mexikosher Chef Katsuji Tanabi (Los Angeles); Milk & Honey Chef Lulu Cai (Hollywood); Miro Chef Gavin Mills (Downtown Los Angeles); Momed Chef Alex Sarkissian (Beverly Hills and Atwater Village); Nerano Chef Michele Lisi (Beverly Hills); Prince of Venice; Ramen Tatsunoya (Pasadena); SpireWorks Chef Kuniko Yagi (Westwood Village and Eagle Rock); Redbird Chef Neal Fraser (Downtown Los Angeles); The Raymond 1886 Chef Tim Guiltinan (Pasadena); True Food Kitchen Chef Phil Noresetter (Pasadena) and Venice Whaler Chef Nick Liberato. Sweet offerings include gourmet single-origin chocolate and vanilla ice creams from Choctal, homemade premium sorbets from Helados Pops, globally-procured cacao from Chocolate Stars USA, Café Dulce, Icy Rush, Lark Cake Shop, Magpies Softserve, Mignon Chocolate, Nothing Bundt Cakes, Sprinkles, Street Churros and The Dirty Cookie. Brewmasters include Southern California favorites Bootlegger’s Brewery, Indie Brewing Company, Iron triangle Brewing, MacLeod Ale Brewing Co., Three Weavers Brewing Company and 101 Cider House. Wineries showcasing their finest varietals including premium boutique winery Ascension Cellars, Antelope Valley’s Golden Star Vineyards, Jardesca, St. Helena’s Hall Wines, Anderson Valley’s Navarro Vineyards, San Antonio Winery in Downtown Los Angeles, Santa Barbara County’s Tercero Wines, Napa Valley’s Trinchero Family Estates and Vinemark Cellars. Bars & Spirits include many of L.A.’s top bartenders such as Peter Lloyd-Jones and 1886 Bar, Garrett McKechnie of Downtown L.A.’s Bar Mattachine and Bar Manager Bethany Ham of the newly opened 1950s inspired hidden cocktail den Birds & Bees. Top brands showcasing their finest spirits will also include American Born Moonshine, Dulce Vida Tequila, Mezcal El Silencio, Glenlevit, Kikori Whiskey, Martell Blue Swift and ZYR Russian Vodka. A variety of premium non-alcoholic beverages include “bevolutionary” Bai with their antioxidant juices, teas and water infusions, Boxed Water, Califia Farms Juices and Cold Brew Coffees, Dry Sparkling, Kombucha Dog, Milk+T, cold-pressed juices from Nekter Juice Bar, Philz hand roasted customized blended coffee, and all natural Zico Coco Water. A VIP Power Hour begins from 3 to 4 p.m. and general admission is from 4 to 7 p.m. Guests are encouraged to utilize car services – Lyft, Uber, or Taxi. To get 20% off your ride to and from Masters of Taste, please visit Lyft. Complimentary parking will also be available at the event. Tickets to this event are only available for guests 21+ and over. To book your tickets directly,visit Rose Bowl Drive, Pasadena.

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