For months, residents of Los Angeles have driven past the build of an 8,400 square foot space on the corner of two bustling LA streets, wondering what exciting space will be joining their neighborhood. Finally, the highly anticipated and appropriately named, 6th & La Brea opened to the delight of the public last month. The spot aims to be the go-to neighborhood restaurant and brewery, with a huge selection of craft beers, California-inspired wine and cocktails, and a delicious Asian-inspired menu from Chef Jihee Kim. The location boasts sky-high ceilings, an expansive patio, and numerous restaurant seating areas. To tackle the renovation and extensive build out of the giant multi-use space, 6th & La Brea partnered with Southern California Restaurant Design Group (SCRDG) to make their design dreams come true for the debut of the new neighborhood brewery.
6th & La Brea is the latest of many ventures for Artisanal Brewers Collective (ABC). We talked with Jon Lerdsuwanrut, chief systems officer for ABC Pubs, whose role is to standardize and lead much of the construction and engineering for new ABC projects. Jon said that SCRDG played an integral role in keeping costs for the buildout down, and working smartly to create an exceptional and high-quality final result for the space.
Chef’s Roll: This is the 12th project for the Artisanal Brewers Collective. To what do you attribute your amazing success?
Jon: We are still learning and making mistakes but we have such a great team! Each opening is a laser focus effort from all facets involved in opening a restaurant.
Chef’s Roll: This many projects in, you surely have your system down to a science; but is there anything new that you’re trying out with 6th and La Brea?
Jon: Science? Maybe. Down to an art? Sure! We are still learning and are always trying out new things. This was our first fully executed project with SCRDG. Just like them, we had other vendors that were new that had to be vetted out and we were fortunate in working with SCRDG that things worked out exceptionally well.
Chef’s Roll: How did you first hear about SCRDG?
Jon: We were referred to SCRDG by one of our architecture firms that we worked with on another project. We quickly went from one project with SCRDG to multiple and I am happy to continue the relationship.
Chef’s Roll: How was the experience working with SCRDG? What was the highlight of working with them?
Jon: Working with one of their kitchen consultants was the start of a promising relationship. Their kitchen consultant was very experienced and was able to help us quickly navigate though some in-field correction that would have cost us thousands in changes and and delays. Getting equipment delivered in one drop was also nice so that the team did not have to wait for equipment to trickle in. Furthermore the installers were exceptional when it came to quality and ownership.
Chef’s Roll: What factors influenced specific design elements of the buildout?
Jon: Menu and layout are the main drivers for the design elements. We had changes throughout the project which usually makes things so much more difficult but it was easier with SCRDG than with a smaller shop where we would have to get our own equipment sourced. Finally, price was also another factor. We were able to find high quality equipment at our budget since SCRDG was able to help us do cost comparisons early on.
Chef’s Roll: What was the most challenging aspect of the project?
Jon: Everything is challenging these days. Even with the best of the best, we have to stay engaged and triple check everything. We ran into numerous inspections issues that drove layout changes and equipment changes. Having the right people on our team gave us the advantage to work around these obstacles. After so many projects, we like to think we know everything, but we always meet people that know more and this was the case for us and SCRDG.
Southern California Restaurant Design Group has worked with countless chefs and restauranteurs to design and oversee commercial kitchen remodels and installs. From accommodating food storage and preparation of ingredients to plating, dish washing and trash removal areas, here are SCRDG’s top tips to consider when contemplating commercial kitchen design:
• Commercial kitchen design plans are dictated by space requirements, equipment & budget.
• Careful, considered planning in the design of the kitchen will save money & time during the construction phase & increase profitability over the life of the kitchen.
• Efficient ergonomics will be appreciated by the owner, chef & kitchen workers.