Raised in both Los Angeles and on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica, Chef Govind Armstrong is as unique a personality as he is a culinary talent. With his distinctive approach to cooking, easygoing style -- and long dreadlocks tied behind his back-- he is quickly becoming one of the nationís brightest stars, both in the kitchen and in front of the camera. As one of L.A's most prominent young toques, Armstrong is strongly committed to a market-driven California cuisine that focuses on fresh seasonal ingredients from the finest local producers.
Despite his relative youth, this chef has been a first-hand participant in L.A.'s culinary history-and the evolution of California cuisine-for two decades. Begining at the age 13, he spent three summer vacations working with none other than Wolfgang Puck in the trend-setting kitchen of the orginal Spago in its inaugural year. Govind has also worked for L.A. culinary luminaries Mark Peel and Nancy Silverton at Campanile, Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger at their seminal City Restaurant, and Joachim Splichal at Patina and Pinot Hollywood. He also spent time in the kitchen of Arzak restaurant, the preeminent Michelin three-star establishment in San Sebastian, Spain, and other highly regarded European kitchens. But Govind has always been a purist in the practice of California cuisine-without an excessive infusion of Asian or Latin American influences-and has developed close relationships with top local producers who can provide remarkable seasonal ingredients.
As if the demands of the kitchen arenít enough, Armstrong has been busy traveling the world as a consultant chef to Air New Zealand, a member of the Marshall Fields/Macyís culinary advisory board, guest chef aboard the Queen Mary 2 and Crystal Cruises and as a culinary ambassador to New Zealand. Additionally, heís been making a wide range of media appearances from print (People Magazineís 50 Most Beautiful Issue, Bon Appetit, Gourmet, O Magazine, etc.) to television (Iron Chef America/Food Network, The Today Show/NBC, Great Domestic Showdown/ABC, Extra, Bravo, Stye Network, Fine Living, WE, etc.). Heís also just finished his first book to be released by Clarkson Potter/Crown in early 2007.
Up next for Armstrong are a variety of restaurant projects, including the June opening of Table 8 South Beach as well as openings of Table 8ís in San Francisco, New York and Las Vegas respectively. As a partner in both Hollywood based L Scorpion and Rokbar, Armstrong will also oversee the expansion of these concepts into new markets.