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Feb 6, 2013 11:33 AM

SD Chef Family Tree Graphic - UT

The online article that goes along with it is gibberish, but the graphic showing the chef spawn of Jeff Jackson, Carl Schroeder, and Deborah Scott is kinda interesting. Any other chefs who should be represented?

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  1. What about Michael Stebner of Region/910 fame. Didn't a few chef's pass through those doors?

    1. I'm a bit shocked that Spike's Africa actually has an executive chef, or even needs one.

      3 Replies
      1. re: ipsedixit

        Maybe they want to make good food, Ipse?

        I'm curious if the food is good at Spike Africa's, perhaps you've tried it?

        1. re: deckape

          I have. I would much prefer McCormick and Schmick's down the street the Omni, and that's not a compliment to either Spike Africa's or McCormick.

      2. I'm so over Tender Greens getting any kind clout from food media as an SD staple.(regional chain is more fair)...sorry not a personal attack but it's OK nothing more. Yet rivals The Cohn and Marlarkey group for extended praise and press coverage in SD.

        24 Replies
        1. re: chris2269

          Good to see that I am not the only one who feels that Tender Greens is very much overhyped. It is a decent place for lunch but it feels, including CH, that many people think it is one of the best places to eat in SD when it is just a place which uses good ingredients, like many other places in SD, but often mediocre prepared.

          1. re: honkman

            Still aglow from the glory of last night's TBL3, I am not going to argue that Tender Greens is San Diego fine dining, or a must-visit for our out of town guests, or even a destination restaurant for those who live in North or East county. But given where I live, time constraints put on my wife and myself by work, exercise, and other obligations, TG is simply the best, fresh take out in the area. And I'm happy to get my dinner once or twice a week.

            Open to suggestions for other places that offer fresh, quality salad-based dinners for take out near Mission Hills, Hillcrest, Point Loma, etc. Blow my mind. Trey Foshee's cauliflower did (as did his carrots, turnips, scallops, squid gelee, oh and so much more). But, happily, I do not work hard enough to be able to afford TBL3 as part of my regular rotation.

            1. re: notjustastomach

              You made me wonder if there are chefs who've come out of George's to run other places. . .

          2. re: chris2269

            It gets coverage because it's consistent, good, and local. What's wrong with that? Can't we be proud of something that works? No one works harder for quality at his places with less blah,blah, blah look-at-me than Pete Balestreri.

            1. re: pickypicky

              Sorry have to disagree. It gets coverage because of Marketing.
              To that point good for them.
              Agree with
              notjustastomach good for take out and fresh food. Yet heralded (SP) like one of the areas top places to eat in SD food media...not so much CH.. If someone came to town and asked for a rec. I can think of 50 places (total) at any price point better, local, fresh and consistent.

              If I don't see 3 articles in the next week about TG on SD eater I will be shocked.

              1. re: chris2269

                Mention #1 - funny, not more than an hour after you posted this, Tender Greens is mentioned on the Eater Heat Map.


                1. re: chris2269

                  Marketing only works if there is news involved. Hype is the reverse of that. TG's news is that they are successful enough -- for a myriad of reasons-- to be opening new locations in two giant wasteland sites in SD: UTC and the airport and that they have a new woman chef on staff.

                  1. re: pickypicky

                    Understand I have nothing against beef is with a lack of wide coverage in SD restaurants by SD media covering food that is hiding under the guise of we are trying to bring you the best and greatest this city has to offer and this is not relocated to one institution. TG employs people and like said by you is doing things right.

                    That said if it gets the press coverage by your definition then there should be a ton of SD restaurants covered ....because believe it or not they do the same thing...OK Ton was an over statement used for dramatic effect . but I can give you 12.

                    It gets the press coverage ...IMO because it's pay to play.

                    "new woman chef on staff." that's great but how is that news I work under a female Chef. I just refer to her as Chef.

                  2. re: chris2269

                    I think what Tender Greens has done is pretty remarkable -- they've created a functioning business model that seems to scale exceptionally well on many levels (financially, guest-satisfaction-wise, serving a role in the community) while (as far as I can tell) legitimately basing their cuisine on locally/independently grown produce.

                    It's kind of like what BurgerLounge has done with grass-fed beef: in both cases they seem to have found the sweet spot of how to make the more expensive product work in a non-luxury market, in terms of pricing, quality, dish composition, experience, and market niche.

                    In my opinion, by finding a model that works so well in a broad market, Tender Greens is doing a lot for the community of restaurants, farmers, and diners who would like to see the market for this kind of food grow.

                    1. re: jayporter

                      Very well written post and you are correct.. Again my problem is not with them or any business doing well. It's more about what's high there are only 3 restaurants (Groups) in SD exist.

                      I really like burger Lounge but I can also give you 4 stand alone places that do it better or just as good. Yet when a top 5 Burgers of SD comes up in local food coverage ...lets see who comes up and what research was done.

                      I recently for free (just because I believe in these places) reached out to a local food critic ( won't say who he works for but begins with U ends with T) and said "Hey you should check this place out" received an email back with basically "pay me and I'll do a review" They did it and they got the glowing review. In this case it was warranted and he was up front and they got what they paid for...deserved regardless IMO.

                      The thing that burns me is coverage that is supposedly just whats going on In said town but under the surface is really marketing by said featured restaurants.

                      I know I have been kinda hard on Eater SD but it's just because I use Eater a lot for other cities and want broader coverage in SD. Plus it's just not them but because I do hold them near and dear ...I know I'm being extra critical.

                      The editor did reach out to me which says a lot. just wanna see broader coverage.

                      1. re: chris2269

                        Are you sure this UT employee is a food critic, or is he their Dining and Entertaining Coordinator? :)

                        1. re: RB Hound

                          Yeah- sounds like Wolfgang. Pay to play, all the way.

                          1. re: Fake Name

                            I won't say your wrong. Again still did the restaurant good and he/she was up front.

                      2. re: jayporter

                        Thanks for your TG appraisal, jayporter. I hope on your new move you'll write regularly. Now, in a world where everyone is an authority on food just because we eat, it's rare to hear from those who are truly authoritative, who think conceptually, and who write well.

                        1. re: pickypicky

                          " in a world where everyone is an authority on food just because we eat, "

                          Was that the opening line to a recent movie trailer??

                          1. re: Fake Name

                            nope. just me trying to turn over a new leaf and not be an opinionated ass anymore.

                            1. re: pickypicky

                              No worries, I'll pick up the slack.

                              It's my style.

                          2. re: pickypicky

                            Thanks, pickypicky. It's really been a great experience for me to be splitting time between SD and SF, the change has made me a lot happier, and the time away makes me enjoy it a lot more when I'm here. The additional perspective makes it easier to see what SD does really well.

                            Josh has alluded to this a couple times, but I've still been surprised at (and this relates specifically to the TG discussion) how rare it is to find casual, neighborhood places in SF with really good sourcing. In SD, I think we have really quite a few places you can reliably pop into and get, say, a salad with really good local greens. In SF that tends to be (though is not always) something you find only in pretty expensive places, often dinner-only with a long wait every night (which does obviously mean there's a big demand for this type of food, which is cool). There are some casual places in the city that do it, but fewer than you'd expect for such a great food city. As someone who really appreciates great local produce on a salad, I think that's a great thing about SD restaurants & cafes right now.

                            Actually, I'd say, compared to SF and many other cities, SD is very strong in quality throughout the whole casual/neighborhood segment (something that honkman, DiningDiva, and others have pointed out here for years -- I guess I'd just say I'm observing that too). It seems like in SD you're always close to a pretty great casual, accessible high-quality neighborhood joint, like a TJ Oyster Bar or, for that matter, a Tender Greens. I'm not sure that's true in many cities.

                            That said, in terms of retail availability of great food, including local produce, pastured meats, wine, artisan coffee and chocolate -- we're off to a respectable start here, but we've got quite a way to go.

                            1. re: pickypicky

                              Now, in a world where everyone is an authority on food just because we eat, it's rare to hear from those who are truly authoritative, who think conceptually, and who write well.

                              and some how you get you decide that. I'm glad your looking out for us.

                        2. re: pickypicky

                          "No one works harder for quality at his places with less blah,blah, blah look-at-me than Pete Balestreri." - That's the perceptions you have through the (media) hype everywhere about TG. I am not saying that PB is not working hard for quality etc. but there are many restaurants in SD with very dedicated chefs/owners who are doing the same (including using local produce etc) like Starlite, Alchemy, Urban Solace, Smoking Goat, Avenue 5, Cafe Chloe, Farmhouse Cafe, El Take It Easy, JSix to name only a few not high end places but with much less media hype and most importantly much better executed food.

                        3. IMHO, Chef Roberto Robledo should be represented on this graphic. His influence on SD dining is undeniable - spanning close to 40 years and spawning some memorable (and not so memorable) SD eating places. Some of his protégés include: Chefs Adalberto, Humberto, Aliberto, Rigoberto, Solberto, Reyberto, Alberto, LuchaLibreberto, Filiberto, Royberto, Aiberto, Ramberto, and Rolberto to name a few.

                          If any single San Diego chef deserves his own culinary family tree graphic, it might just be Roberto Robledo.

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: Stiflers_Mom


                            They need a bronzed taco for all the 'erto's' out there.
                            Maybe next to the 'Entering San Diego County' sign.

                            We can have a pinata style CAB statue to Super Sergio on Convoy for our beloved Fakey.

                              1. re: Stiflers_Mom

                                I think Chef Roberto also had an affair with a woman in Phoenix ...