The Chicago chef is making moves out West.
Stephanie Izard stays busy. Last year, the Chicago-based chef added the coveted title of Iron Chef to her long list of accomplishments, which also includes 2011 Food & Wine Best New Chef and chef/partner — alongside Boka Restaurant Group (BRG) — of three critically acclaimed restaurants: Girl & the Goat, Little Goat, and Duck Duck Goat. Just when we start to think she's done it all, Izard surprises us with another bombshell.
Today, Izard announced to Food & Wine that her award-winning restaurant Girl & the Goat will be expanding to Los Angeles. Slated to open in the Arts District in the summer of 2019, Girl & the Goat L.A. will be both Izard’s and BRG’s first restaurant outside of Chicago.
“Once we decided the time was finally right to expand outside of Chicago, my partners and I had to really think about where we wanted to go next,” Izard said in a statement to Food & Wine.
“I have been fortunate to spend time in many cities for various events, and over the past couple of years have spent quite a bit of time in L.A. As a Chicagoan, of course the thought of spending more time in the sunshine was an original selling point, but after exploring the city more and getting a feel for the neighborhoods and the restaurant scene in L.A., we all developed an appreciation for all that the city has to offer,” she said, proving that, when it comes to goat, Izard is the actual G.O.A.T.
When Izard opened Girl & the Goat in Chicago’s West Loop in 2010, she helped turn the neighborhood into a thriving food hub, now home to other Windy City staples like Au Cheval and The Publican. Izard says that L.A.'s Arts District reminds her of the West Loop as she first encountered it, and she sees an opportunity “to add to the creative community in the neighborhood.”
While Girl & the Goat L.A. will stay true to its Midwestern counterpart by offering globally-influenced foods served family style, the two menus won’t be identical. Some Chicago favorites, like wood-roasted pig face and goat empanadas, will likely find their way to the West Coast, but Izard plans to craft new dishes inspired by California produce and local flavors.
“I have always been envious of chefs in California for the long growing seasons and bounty of produce,” Izard says. “I’m excited to finally have an opportunity to approach the Goat’s menu with all that California's produce has to offer.”
And we’re excited to have another excuse to plan a trip to L.A. in 2019.
For more on Stephanize Izard, including recipes from her new cookbook, Gather & Graze: 120 Favorite Recipes for Tasty Good Times, check out this link.