Special Event
Mark Peel Nancy Silverton
Mark Peel
Nancy Silverton
James Beard Award Winner
Los Angeles
Mark Peel
Nancy Silverton

Tuesday, May 7, 7:00 P.M.
Members $100, guests $125

Last year's James Beard Award for the country's Outstanding Restaurant went to Campanile and chef/owners Mark Peel and Nancy Silverton, pioneers of California cuisine, albeit one with a rustic Italian soul in a style distinctly their own. Celebrities may flock to this L.A. favorite, but food is the real star—hearty, simple dishes, such as grilled ribs with an olive-anchovy tapenade crust—made with what Gourmet's Caroline Bates has called "flawless ingredients that sing with flavor." It's praise we've come to expect for these two extraordinarily talented native Californians who've worked and trained in some of the best restaurants in the world.

While studying at the University of California at Santa Barbara, Peel got a job peeling vegetables for Wolfgang Puck at Ma Maison. As part of the restaurant's apprenticeship program, Peel was sent to France to work at La Tour d'Argent and Le Moulin de Mougins. Upon his return, he was tapped as sous-chef at Michael's in Santa Monica, where he met Silverton, who was just back from studying at the Cordon Bleu in London and working as the restaurant's assistant pastry chef. From Michael's, Peel went on to Spago, and then to the celebrated Chez Panisse in Berkeley. Meanwhile, Silverton went back to Europe to study pastry at the Ecole Lenôtre in Plaiser, France. When she got back, Puck signed her on as head pastry chef at Spago, where Peel was head chef. In 1985, the couple moved to Manhattan and spent six months revamping Maxwell's Plum. In L.A. once again, they searched high and low for a place of their own. They found it in a vast, architecturally stunning space built in 1929 by Charlie Chaplin that had enough room for their own bake shop. La Brea Bakery and Campanile opened in 1989, the same year Peel and Silverton were named to Food & Wine's list of Best New Chefs. Since then Peel, Silverton, Campanile, and La Brea Bakery have been the recipients of many awards, including Nation's Restaurant News Fine Dining Award, Los Angeles Culinary Master of the Year, and of course Silverton's Beard Award in 1990 as Outstanding Pastry Chef.

In between the awards and three children, the couple has co-authored two cookbooks, and Silverton has written three on her own. Ten years ago, to meet the strong demand for La Brea's breads, the couple opened a much larger bakery facility, which is now considered America's largest artisan bakery. And the kudos keep coming in. Once again, Zagat respondents picked Campanile as "the best" in town, where "gorgeous architecture meets food to die for."


Cold Mussels with Parsley Pesto

Asparagus and Serrano Ham

Nettle Soup with Poached Kumamoto Oysters

Seared Bluefin Tuna with Fava Beans and Celery Leaves

Burrata on Soft Polenta

Roast Duck Breast Stuffed with Long Cooked Greens on Wild Fennel Soubise


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