If you follow the local luxe lonchera scene, chances are you've probably crossed paths with Chef Keba Parker already. Whether it's behind the grill at The Lime Truck or Barcelona on the Go, Keba has the "learn by doing" mantra down. His catering company, A Bite to Remember, has been around since 2003. He recently included the lonchera aspect and invited us to talk about the venture. Consider this an On the Line teaser; at least until we get him to answer the questionnaire.
His interest began two years ago, right around the time when the luxe lonchera scene was taking off. Parker believed it was a great concept for a restaurant, especially the significantly lower overhead than a traditional brick-and-mortar. He first met Esteban Nocito of Barcelona on the Go, who suggested he network with additional owners.
Keba then started working on The Lime Truck while they were busy filming on Food Network. After his stint there, Parker was executive chef at The Yost Theatre in Santa Ana before moving on to Barcelona.
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Keba's menu includes savory, sweet and brunch items. It's not easy to categorize their cuisine, mainly because he intends to change up the selections on a regular basis. Some items will remain available for a longer period than others (the lobster quesadilla, for example), but bites like the chicken tikka masala taco will make way for Keba's creativity. His version of California fusion will always include five savory, two sweet options and their belief that "simple is sexy".
Their next service is tomorrow tonight at The Bruery from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.. Keba is back at his zen place behind the grill. Executive pastry chef and wife Cristina will be there also, possibly carrying a little cinnamon panna cotta with a robust coffee caramel sauce. We'll save the topics of chef's restaurants, Old McDonald and Irish car bomb chocolate wedding cake for the interview.