MEET RYAN ADAMS: RUSSO-CARPATHIAN GERMAN MIDDLE CHILD AND CHEF-PROPRIETOR OF THREE SEVENTY COMMON.
BORN AND RAISED IN ORANGE COUNTY, CA, RYAN WAS HEAVILY INFLUENCED BY HIS FAMILY. HIS GRANDMOTHER DIDN'T BELIEVE IN RESTAURANTS. SHE GREW HER OWN PRODUCE AND COOKED EVERYTHING. HIS DAD HAS ALWAYS WORKED WITH HIS HANDS. AND HIS MOM MADE EVERYTHING SPECIAL FOR HIM BECAUSE OF HIS PICKY-EATER TENDENCIES, UNTIL ONE DAY IT WAS DECLARED, "MAKE IT YOURSELF". SO RYAN DISCOVERED THE SPICE DRAWER.
A DEVILISH STREAK FOUND HIM BUSTED FOR BREAKING WINDOWS OR SCUFFING UP THE NEIGHBOR KIDS ENOUGH TIMES TO GET HIM STUCK AT THE KITCHEN TABLE ON VEGGIE-CLEANING DUTY OR IN THE GARDEN PICKING BEANS.
INSPIRED BY CLASSIC COUNTRY MUSIC AND SPEED METAL ALIKE, VINTAGE CARS + KNIVES, SURFING, SKATING AND A GOOD BLOODY RIB-EYE, RYAN'S FOOD IS DYNAMIC. HE’S TRAVELED FAR AND WIDE, AND HAS COOKED, SWEAT + YELLED IN OVER 40 KITCHENS. NOW, AT THE HELM OF HIS NEW EATERY, HE BRINGS IT BACK TO HOME. “NO MATTER WHERE YOU COME FROM OR WHAT HAPPENS DURING YOUR DAY, YOU ALWAYS FIND YOURSELF AROUND THE TABLE, SHARING A MEAL WITH THE ONES YOU LOVE.”
Your earliest food memory:
Fond memories of picking green beans in the garden and then cleaning them with my grandmother.
Favorite meal growing up:
The comfort and aroma of homemade chicken noodle soup - no canned soup for us.
Your best recent food find:
Clay Oven in Irvine, where you can eat your way around the different regions of India.
Most undervalued ingredient:
Braised, fresh local greens such as kale, collards and chard. They're delicious, healthy and quick to cook. Plus they complement the flavors of so many other ingredients.
Who came up with the drink board? Brilliant idea!
I agree and must admit that I borrowed the idea from the guys at Lola Gaspar.
We read you personally pick the vegetables for Sunday Supper at the Laguna Beach farmers market. Is what you find the basis of your menu, or do you have an idea before you arrive?
We usually have an idea before we go to the market, but we always wind up adding or subtracting something depending on what looks great and availability. And, we always go to the OC Great Park Farmers Market on Sunday mornings for any last minute items.
Last place you had a good bloody rib-eye (besides your own kitchen)?
At Del Rae in Pico Rivera.
Culinarily speaking, Orange County has the best:
We have some fantastic spots for Vietnamese food, as well as a few great Thai restaurants.
What fast food do you admit to eating?
In-N-Out Burger, because their food is good, consistent and I can get it until 1 a.m.
What is your beverage of choice, and where do you get it?
A great classic Gin & Tonic made by me.
One food you can't live without and why:
Sriracha hot chili sauce because I like the taste and the distinctive way that it imparts zing and zest and heat to food.
Where was your most recent meal?
Japanese food at Honda Ya in Tustin, and what didn't I have would be the better question!
Best culinary tip for the home cook:
Don't be afraid to use salt - it's a terrific flavor enhancer.
What do you think of people who take photographs of their food?
It doesn't really bother me.
British chef Marco Pierre White, also known as the godfather of modern cooking. He was and still is a kitchen renegade.
Weirdest thing you've ever eaten:
Balut, a Filipino delicacy that is basically a fermented dead baby chicken with bones.
Favorite places to eat (besides your own).
Marche Moderne, The Crosby, Lola Gaspar, Honda Ya and a whole bunch more as well.
If you weren't such a mean kid growing up (breaking windows, scuffling with kids - forcing kitchen duty as punishment), do you think you'd still be a restauranteur?
This is a tough question for me. I really like what I'm doing and am not that interested in other jobs, careers or pursuits at this point.
Weirdest customer request (and did you do it?):
It was to go home with her and it didn't happen.
THREE SEVENTY COMMON.