Dissident Chef

mysterious dining, originally uploaded by c(h)ristine.

I picked up this business card while on errands (and weirdly at a non-food venue) a few weeks ago. “Reject Dystopian Ways,” it said, and the reverse, while no more clear, introduced the url for the Dissident Chef. The accompanying flyer described this venture (named “Sub Culture Dining”) as an underground restaurant with roving meals. Invite only. Not open to the public.

Hrm. “Why,” I said to the salesperson packing up my dog’s Halloween costumes (“hot dog” outfits for my dachshunds if you must know), “would you advertise something and then say it’s referral only, and not open to the public?” I was waving the card. “I MUST know! I want to do this!” Thank goodness no one else was in the store, I must have looked like a zealot lady. (okay, I’m a zealot when it comes to food).

I was so insistent that the employees called the owner of the store who enlightened us all. I took a card and went home to check out the website. There’s plenty of protocol, and a limited amount of dates. I had to wait until November and December opened up with availability (when I checked only September and October dates were posted).

The long and the short of it: I have a reservation. I am overwhelmed with curiosity and excitement. I have to get a new cellphone, because mine does not ring when people call; a working cellphone is necessary because they call you with the location of dinner the same day as your reservation.

Preliminary reviews at Yelp where user June W. says, “Possibly the best evening and dining experience I have ever had!!! ” and OMG Food! indicate that this is something I ought to be excited about. OMG Food! has a bit of a bio on the chef and possible reasons for this venture (he is raising money for his next restaurant, clever boy). A 25 year veteran of the Los Angeles restaurant scene, he was profiled (and outed) by the LA Times.

Down in the comments thread of a recent post at Becks & Posh, there’s discussion about the Dissident Chef. How to get in? Is it worth it?

I’ve gotten past the first question–now I’m waiting to address the second: Is it worth it?

My third question is: I wonder if I can bring a camera and take pictures of my dining experience there.

Update: My write up on the experience is here on Muffin Top

12 responses to “Dissident Chef

  1. The website says you need to know someone who has already been there. Did you? Or were you able to just get a spot?

  2. Hi Michael–yes, you do need to know someone who has already been, or find a way for someone to refer you.

  3. Interesting. It sounds a lot like The Ghet/ Gourmet Ghetto, which is also a private/ secret chef kind of thing.

  4. Um, is that THE Michael Musto? C(h)ristine, you know EVERYBODY.

    The whole underground chef thing is not my scene, but Michael Musto? I am impressed.

    Hi, Michael.

  5. Leila,
    you don’t know what your missing.
    c(h)ristine, I’m looking forward to seeing you…
    Susan, We’re nothing like GG, Believe me we far exceed what they do… not that there’s not space for what they do.
    MM, would love to have you over.. Bring it daddy..

  6. Dissident Chef: Thanks for coming by! I’m looking forward to my meal. Really excited, actually–I referred a couple of friends to you already. The husband of one of my friends realized you were one of his former students! Small world.

    Question: is it okay for me to bring a camera and take pictures of the food? HOW underground is this experience?

  7. Yes,
    I know who you speak of.. He has no idea what he’s in for.. Smaller than you know..
    Sure, fine to bring a camera, please no photo’s of the location, we ask that others respect the annoimity of our guest… I suppose the experience is as underground as you perceive it. As recent reviews have stated, we’re about the food, and the quality of service and your enjoyment. unlike other undergrounds that are centered around the supposed or perceived social experience…
    look forward to seeing you.. keep sending the troops, keeps us alive and working..

  8. Pingback: Sub Culture Dining with the Dissident Chef « Muffin Top

  9. Pingback: Subculture Dining, SF « What’s for Lunch?

  10. jameswillisisthebest

    This is my first post
    just saying HI

  11. Pingback: Subculture Dining, SF | Foodhoe's Foraging

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