Name: Mike Townsend
Hometown: Newport Beach, CA
Current Location: LES, New York
Daily Uniform: Always changes.
I have more than a few: Cameras
Favorite things about California: My son, Ethan; the Wedge, Mammoth and Palm Springs.
Favorite things about New York: All the great restaurants, the people, driving upstate and dirty beach days at Rockaway.
In the kitchen, I swear by: Sriracha
The taste I couldn’t live without: Chocolate
Most incredible dinner out: My friend, Ryan Rice, cooked a bootleg dinner for about 40 people in Brooklyn. It was something like $80 a head. Such a wonderful meal with random, interesting people—minus my wasted date. We had, by far, the craziest table.
If I could cook for anyone: Larry David, because the guy is a fucking riot! I would have no idea what to cook that neurotic man.
I’m dying to go to: The Maldives, for beach days and eating tons of fresh fish.
Top 5 Meals:
1. Fresh fish tacos with black beans and white rice at Bear Flag Fish Co. in Newport Beach, CA
2. Flatiron steak, truffle creamed spinach and pickled onion rings; then chocolate financier brandied cherries and praline ice cream for dessert at Little Bird in Portland, OR
3. Double smoked bacon from the Schaller & Weber Store in New York
4. Blaue Gans in New York: Starter: cream of white asparagus and chive soup; Entree: pork wiener schnitzel, lingonberries and cucumber-potato salad; Dessert: kaiserschmarrn with poached rhubarb and rum ice cream
5. Arugula salad with oranges, pears, walnuts and parmesan, with steak au poivre, mesclun, French fries and peppercorn at Sebastian LES in New York
Motto: Travel, and keep an open mind.