Visionary Chef Guy Wiener and His Sweet Bleu & Brie Flatbread Recipe
Chef Guy Wiener has trained and worked amongst some of the nation’s most distinguished and skilled chefs in New York and Boston. He has worked at various kitchen in Los Angeles, including the Patina Kitchen, Michael Mina’s XIV in Hollywood, and as Chef de Cuisine at The Federal Bar. Additionally, Chef Guy utilized his talent to teach former gang members how to cook haute Mexican cuisine at Homegirl Cafe.
Innovative and ambitious, Chef Guy keeps a busy calendar in the kitchen. Currently, he is a full time Corporate Executive Chef for an investment firm in Century City. Chef Guy is also the Executive Chef and Consultant at the new kitchen and coffee bar, Steampunk in his own neighborhood of Valley Village, in North Hollywood. Steampunk is owned and operated by husband and wife team, Sean Heitkemper and Arelene Roldan. Sean is thrilled to have Chef Guy paving the way, professing, “He is one of the most undersung, young chefs in Los Angeles.”
Steampunk is a lively and casual brunch spot where the owners make sustainable practices a priority. They carry fair trade and small batch coffee, and skilled baristas serve all espresso drinks with double shots. Steampunk offers an approachable menu of high quality California comfort food with a twist.
Chef Guy integrates his vision with the owners, utilizing only the highest quality ingredients, always fresh, and locally sourced. Chef Guy and his team also develop to go specials for Bar One Beer & Wine Parlor located a few doors down (also owned by Sean and Arelene). The Steampunk and Bar One menus offer haute plates such as chilaquiles with bacon, unique flatbreads, fried chicken and waffle sandwich, creative salads, vegetarian options, and more.
Chef Guy has the ability to take ordinary food and produce brilliant culinary plates. Clearly passionate about his work, he started on a completely different career track before he followed his dreams.
Chef Guy’s Culinary Journey
Chef Guy’s passion for cooking started in his early childhood, when he was about five years old. He has fond memories of learning to cook in the kitchen with his grandmother Miryam, ” I always enjoyed cooking with my grandmother… she was my inspiration.”
Growing up in an orthodox community, in a traditional Jewish home, he graduated at the head of his class. Chef Guy felt a tremendous pressure to enter a profession as a lawyer or doctor. He went to school studying Psychobiology with intentions to become a Radiologist.
In Chef Guy’s previous career, he worked in the Biotech industry and wore protective suits in underground lab. Over time, he could no longer hide his desire to pursue a culinary passion. He traded his career of mixing chemicals, for stirring up haute dishes up in the kitchen. He left California for New York to attend the Culinary Institute of America (CIA).
Chef Guy shared some of the difficult challenges he faced and overcame when he transitioned into the culinary profession. Chef Guy is grateful he didn’t continue down his initial career path to become a Radiologist. He encourages others to follow their passion, “Do it, as long as it makes you happy. People are motivated by different things… I go to bed with a smile on my face, and I wake up with a smile on my face.”
Chef Guy mentions that he puts heart and soul into his food and is happy to see people enjoying and eating his food, to him “It makes everything well worth it.” Personally, I think the “heart and soul” are key ingredients in his cooking. Chef Guy’s creation of the exquisite fried waffle-battered chicken and waffle sandwich (yum!) is well worth a trip to Steampunk!
Upcoming Events and Chef Guy’s Special Flatbread Recipe
In the future, Arelene reveals that Steampunk will host “cup tastings”—coffee tastes paired with delicious food. They will feature upcoming outdoor events as Oktoberfest and Dia de Los Muertos featuring a haute selection of libations and themed menus bought to you by Chef Guy Wiener. For more information and these upcoming events, log on to Steampunk Facebook page.
If North Hollywood is geographically challenging, you don’t have to miss out on Chef Guy’s creations! You can try Chef Guy’s gourmet comfort food in your own home. He contributes a sweet and savory recipe to HauteNosh–Sweet Bleu & Brie Flatbread, a popular nosh served at Bar One (and it happens to be his mother’s favorite!). To find out more information on Chef Guy, log on to www.facebook.com/chefguywiener.
- 1 ea. – Flat bread such as naan bread
- ½ oz. – Grapes, red seedless
- Pan spray – as needed
- 5 ea. – Crumbled pecans
- 1 Tablespoon – Honey
- 1 oz.- Pickled red onions
- ½ ea. – Red onions, julienne ¼”
- ½ oz. – Exra virgin and olive oil
- ⅛ cup – Sugar
- Salt – to taste
- ⅛ cup – Red wine vinegar
- 2 oz. – Cambozolo cheese
- Roasted grapes: destem grapes, spread on a sheet tray, and coat them in pan spray.
- Roast until grapes turn light brown and start to pop open, approximately 20 minutes in a 375 degree oven.
- Pickled Red onions: In a saute pan, sweat onions quickly with salt and sugar until they slightly soften, but do not brown, approximately 2 minutes.
- Then add the vinegar and continue to cook for one more minute.
- Cover and remove from heat to finish cooking. The onions should turn purple.
- Flatbread Assembly: Top naan bread with pickled red onions, pecans and grapes, then drizzle with honey.
- Heat in a 500 degree oven until the bread is crispy, approximately 4 minutes. Remove the flatbread from the oven and then top with the cambozolo cheese and melt slightly in the oven for 10 seconds.