Chef Aaron Ziegler will debut his pop-up restaurant Bull & Dragon tomorrow night at Flake, which runs through the end of December. The nine-item menu highlights his signature style of vibrant slow-cooked foods using modern methods and fresh, locally sourced ingredients. Some of the fresh-picked produce will even come from his personal garden in Venice. Dishes include stuffed cuttlefish with scallop mousse, smoked duck breast salad, rabbit mole, and bacon-wrapped venison chops with winter squash.
Here's a before and after look at Chef Aaron's backyard veggie garden at his home in Venice.
After working with some of the most notable names in the culinary scene including Susan Tracht, Govind Armstrong, and Wolfgang Puck, and appearing on Spike TV's "Covert Kitchens" hosted by Graham Elliott, Ziegler wants to open his own restaurant and has been raising funds to launch Bull & Dragon as a popup, an advantageous way for up-and-coming chefs to ease their way into the investment of brick-and-mortar restaurants.
"Flake was chosen because they're closed for dinner, they're super clean, organized and friendly, and I live locally -- just a few blocks away," says Ziegler.
This was also the location of choice for Chef Ari Taymor who launched Alma as a pop-up at Flake before settling into his permanent space in Downtown LA and earning Bon Appetit's honor of "Best New Restaurant of 2013."
Most recently, Ziegler made a guest appearance in Chef Walter el Nagar's kitchen at Barbershop Ristorante, another pop-up across town at Local 1205, which settled in permanently as Ostricaro Fisico.
"Walter and I have become friends, and I've been helping him with his pop-up Barbershop since it moved to Venice, so he's lending his help and some equipment to my pop-up," says Ziegler. The "Collision" was for one week when we teamed up with the Amalur Project, a separate pop-up. That, by the way, was a blast for all of us to collaborate together. I'm sure we'll do it again in the future."
Bull & Dragon opens this Thursday, December 5 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. and serves every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night until December 21. The menu ranges from $15 appetizers to $25 entrees. A three-course tasting is $45, and a five-course tasting is $70.
Bull & Dragon // 513 Rose Ave., Venice CA 90291 // (612) 250-2661