Edit ModuleShow Tags

Shooting for Top Chef

Oceanaire’s young executive chef and operating partner Brian Malarkey has already cooked up a winning career


Published:

CAN LIFE GET ANY BETTER THAN THIS?

“You know,” says Brian Malarkey, whose culinary creations helped win Oceanaire Seafood Room top honors from San Diego Magazine this year for best seafood, “I keep thinking of that Talking Heads song from Down and Out in Beverly Hills: ‘And you may find yourself in a beautiful house, with a beautiful wife. And you may ask yourself: “Well . . . How did I get here?” ’ ”

Malarkey got here with lots of talent and hard work. A native of Oregon, he took his culinary inspiration from his grandmother, whose beach-house kitchen was often frequented by her old friend, the legendary chef James Beard.

Although he took a stab at acting in school —he was a theater arts major for one year at Santa Barbara City College—Malarkey says he soon discovered “You can always eat in a restaurant.” And so he enrolled in the Western Culinary Institute’s Le Cordon Bleu cooking school and, on completion, set his sights on California. After working under French chef Michael Richard at Citrus in Los Angeles, Malarkey ate his way through a tour of Europe and North Africa before returning to the States and joining the Oceanaire restaurant group.

His long list of awards includes the California Restaurant Association local chapter’s citation as chef of the year and the San Diego Magazine readers’ polls and critic’s picks in 2006 and 2007 for best seafood restaurant. This summer, Malarkey is stirring some show biz into the mix. He’s in the thick of the competition with 15 of the country’s best chefs in a series of Top Chef cook-offs on the Bravo network. We won’t know until the final show airs in September if he won. But Malarkey does seem to have the recipe for success.

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

More »Related Stories

Herb & Wood Shines in Little Italy

Chef (and target) Brian Malarkey does his best work yet at the stunning new restaurant

La Vida Vegan: Take the Cake

Moncai Vegan serves up black bean cakes with mustard mango habanero

This Pop-Up Dinner Is One of the Hottest Tickets in Town

Outstanding in the Field is pairing a Kettner Exchange chef with Temecula Olive Oil Company for an epic dinner party
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. 27 Secret San Diego Spots
    From hidden caves to dead bodies beneath a public park, here's our third annual guide to all things hidden and hush-hush
  2. FIRST LOOK: False Idol
    San Diego is now home to a world-class tiki bar—False Idol
  3. Best of San Diego 2016
    Our annual and completely subjective guide to SD’s best
  4. The Chilling Facts About Craft Beer
    Why colder is not always better
  5. FIRST LOOK: Decoy Dockside
    San Marcos gets an ambitious, two-story gastro-lodge on the lake with Decoy Dockside.
  6. Top 10 Off-Site Events during Comic-Con 2016
    No badge, no problem—these happenings are free and open to the public
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Promotions

Go Ahead... Ask McMillin!

At McMillin Realty, we are encouraging you to bring us your real estate questions. We will answer these questions….. for free.

Not Your Grandma's Orthotics

New year, new – shoe? Staying on your feet for long hours at a time just got a whole lot more comfortable with Wiivv’s BASE custom insoles
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module
Edit Module

Connect With Us:

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Sponsored

Go Ahead... Ask McMillin!

At McMillin Realty, we are encouraging you to bring us your real estate questions. We will answer these questions….. for free.

“Will You Marry Me”?

Sharon Jenks, CEO of 6 Degrees, on building business relationships
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags