Ray Garcia grew up gathering around his grandmother’s table for Sunday dinners, but he never thought he’d have a career as a chef.
The Los Angeles native was originally set to go to law school, but the kitchen came knocking. As he explains it, “”Food chose me, I didn’t choose it. The tastes, sounds and smells—all kept drawing me back in.” After studying at the California School of Culinary Arts, Ray worked with a variety of renowned chefs at distinguished Los Angeles institutions before launching acclaimed Santa Monica bistro FIG. This year, hew moved on to open two new restaurants, Broken Spanish and BS Taqueria, where he draws on his experience as an Angeleno and the kind of comfort food hew grew up eating with his grandmother.
We asked him to jot down thoughts on the evolving restaurant scene, the rise of global cuisines, and why you shouldn’t try to make everyone like you.
Get to know all of the members of the Williams-Sonoma Chefs’ Collective, and see their latest travels, eats, and other inspirations on Instagram under the hashtag #wschefs.