Gabbi Patrick of Gabbi's Mexican Kitchen, Part One

Photo by Todd Barnes


When Gabbi and Ed Patrick opened their upscale Mexican restaurant in 2006, they chose not to hang signage on their storefront. Despite running in stealth mode for the first few months, word spread quickly about their sophisticated renditions of regional Mexican dishes. Four years later, there's still no signage on the brick building in Old Towne Orange, nor any sign that the crowds are thinning.
What are six words to describe your food?
Passionate, soulful, flavorful, fun, original, sophisticated.

What are ten words to describe you?
Honest, sensitive, funny, hot-tempered, mother, wife, easy going, happy

Five jobs you had before becoming a chef:
I've worked in the business my whole life so I've held just about every job in the restaurant.

If this cooking thing doesn't pan out, what else would you rather do for a living?
This is what love, I can't see myself doing anything else.

Imagine you're a one-dish streetcart vendor. What dish would you sell, and why?
Taquitos. They're easy to make and delicious!

Your thoughts on the food truck phenomenon?
I'm all for progression in the food industry. The trucks have low
overhead, not to mention they are always changing location…From a
business standpoint, you can't beat that!

Your best recent food find:
Well it's not new to me but I have recently began using fried yucca at Gabbi's Mexican Kitchen.

What's the most undervalued ingredient?
Sea salt.

What are the rules of conduct in your kitchens?

One food you detest:
Pigeon, never again..

One food you can't live without:
Steak and frites.

If you were food dictator for a day, and could force everyone to eat one thing, what would it be?
Huitlacoche (Mexican truffle).

What fast food is your least favorite?
Taco Bell.

What's your best culinary tip for the home cook?
Pre-plan fresh and have fun..

What's your after-work hangout?

If you could cook for one person, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
My late grandfather Don Victor; he loved life and his Yucatecan cooking.

Gabbi's Mexican Kitchen
141 S. Glassell, Orange (714) 633-3038
Open seven days a week 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.

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