In their latest piece for L.A. Weekly, Food Editor Michele Stueven discusses the future of restaurants with Los Angeles’ brightest chefs, pondering on the question: is the dining room dead? Meeting at the LA Chef Conference, an event that brings together around 630 of L.A.’s top chefs, restaurateurs and vendors, Stueven, along with Wolfgang Puck, Suzanne Goin, Mary Sue Milliken, Tim Hollingsworth and others, took a hard look at the sustainable future of restaurants.
“The consensus was clear that there’s no such thing as going back to the pre-pandemic model of dining,” writes Stueven. “With a challenging labor shortage and supply chain issues, there’s no more barking at employees or projectiles in the kitchen. Conversations from the conference suggest that keys to a sustainable restaurant future are smaller dining spaces and menus, hybrid retail and dine-in concepts, mental health and lots of delivery. With many people still working at home, the coffee table is the new dining table.”