May 26, 2022 Your Source for Brentwood News

Five Months Into Opening, Jonah’s Kitchen Is on Fire With Casual, ‘Made From Scratch’ Dishes

By Susan Payne 

Having a seat inside of Jonah’s Kitchen, an elevated, yet fast casual restaurant in Santa Monica, is like having a meal with the celebrity chef himself, an al-fresco cooking experience.

Chef Jonah Johnson opened the restaurant in June, inspired by his travels through Latin America and made with love — organic dishes, fresh vegetables, sauce and food made scratch, cooked above a wood-fired grill.

“When we take the meats out of the smoker, everything we do is from scratch. It’s been a dream to open this and express the types of food and cooking I like to do,” Johnson said. “It takes after the experience you would have at my home.”

Although heavily traveled across the world, Johnson’s restaurant is an ode to the people in his life he has learned from: food and flavor stemming from a multicultural, ethnic background.

Mexican, Caribbean, Italian, and Korean, Johnson said, his menu is a mix of cultural foods over an open fire. 

“I’ve experienced all those flavors, traveled and lived in some of these places, and I wanted to bring a multicultural smorgasbord of barbecue the way different cultures cook their food with fire,” he said. 

Growing up in California, Jonah found behind the grill with his father more entertaining than playing basketball with the neighborhood kids. At the age of 10, his intense love of food began with one question: how did raw meat over fire, or fresh ingredients from the garden, become something that tasted so good. 

“My father is a grill master, and I was intrigued by that as a kid, smelling barbecue and seeing the offset cooker and wondering why it tastes so good,” Johnson said. 

Johnson’s aunt, Bethann, who lived in Minnesota, was another kitchen influence in his life. Bethann was a southern style cook who made sauces from scratch. 

On the other side of Johnson’s family, Swedish, Serbian and eastern European food scented the air.

“Since I was a kid, food around me was always very different, but it was always really good. I was never stuck in one culture’s food. When I came to California, I fell in love with Mexican and Latin food,” he said.

Johnson’s journey to “try other people’s food” led him on a career path that accommodated that lifestyle, traveling and cooking for celebrity clients, including Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt and Gisele Bundchen. He’s also had the pleasure of cooking for Mick Jagger, Al Pacino, Tobey Maguire, Clint Eastwood, Tarantino and Steven Spielberg, to name a few.

“That’s the main reason I wanted to travel. I wanted to eat other people’s food and be inspired. I don’t eat at hotel restaurants, I want to eat what the people are eating the entire time,” Johnson said.

Jonah’s Kitchen, a culmination of his experience cooking and traveling, offers a unique menu, crafted for locals and LA visitors alike. 

Here are a few picks: 

  • K-Town Chicken
  • Ribs “Argentina Parilla” STYLE 
  • Crispy Potatoes
  • Steamed (Koshihikari) Rice
  • Gochujang Shrimp Tacos
  • Vegan King Tacos
  • Rice Pilaf with Grilled Vegetables
  • Porterhouse Steak (for groups)

“We cook everything from scratch. When you have fresh vegetables, coupled with beautiful pork ribs from sustainable, high-quality farms and Japanese steamed rice, and nothing processed, you feel the difference.” Johnson said.

Jonah’s Kitchen is located at 2518 Wilshire Blvd in Santa Monica, open Tuesday through Saturday 12 p.m. to 12 a.m. Lunch hours are 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. and dinner is 5 p.m. to 10. The restaurant is closed daily from 4 p.m. and 5 p.m.

Related Posts

Pudding Concept Feeds LA’s Curious, Dessert Connoisseurs

May 25, 2022

May 25, 2022

By Susan Payne A fairly new trend has made Los Angeles a three-time permanent home, giving dessert connoisseurs a taste...

Fire Suppression in the Hills Above Brentwood

May 25, 2022

May 25, 2022

Let’s try a little thought experiment. Anyone who lives in the canyons north of Sunset is rightly concerned about the...

Popular Brentwood Coffee Shop Launching Vegan Breakfast Sandwich

May 25, 2022

May 25, 2022

Alfred Coffee Shop introducing a plant-based alternative breakfast sandwich By Dolores Quintana Alfred Coffee Shop will now be offering a...

Getty Center Extends Saturday Hours

May 24, 2022

May 24, 2022

Museum starting next month will stay open until 8 p.m. By Staff Writer Beginning June 18, 2022, the Getty Center...

Santa Monica Mountains Nat’l Recreation Area Receives Grant That Will Virtually Bring 4th Graders to the Park

May 24, 2022

May 24, 2022

Rangers engage students on topics related to local public lands Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area recently received an Open...

Seller of Bel Air Mansion Furious After Property Flops at Auction

May 24, 2022

May 24, 2022

Mansion on Sarbonne Road in Bel Air fails to meet $50 million reserve price By Sam Catanzaro The seller of...

Betty White Brentwood Home Listed As Tear Down $10.575 Million: Brentwood Beat – May 23rd, 2022

May 23, 2022

May 23, 2022

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes.* Betty White Brentwood Home Listed As Tear Down $10.575 Million * L.A City...

Los Angeles Metro Sees 15.9 Percent Increase in Median Rent

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Median rent of $2,258, according to recent report By Dolores Quintana The ongoing pandemic has exacerbated the issues of housing...

Amalfi Drive Custom Home Sells for $21 Million

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Six bedroom property sells to unnamed buyer By Dolores Quintana  The Story Company, a custom home development company, that is...

Interview With CD-11 Candidate Jim Murez

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

By Nick Antonicello The following is an interview with Jim Murez, a candidate for Mike Bonin’s soon-to-be-vacant seat on Los...

LAFD Make Quick Work of Brentwood Hillside Home Fire

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Monday fire remains under investigation By Sam Catanzaro The LAFD made quick work putting on a three-story home that went...

DUI Checkpoint Coming to Westside Friday Afternoon and Night

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

By Staff Writer A Los Angeles Police Department DUI checkpoint is coming to the Westside this afternoon and tonight The...

CD-11 Profile: The Allison Holdorff-Polhill Interview

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Nick Antonicello speaks to council candidate Allison Holdorff-Polhill on homelessness, city finances and the current and future state of the...

Eataly Spring into Summer Festa Is Coming On May 19

May 18, 2022

May 18, 2022

Experience The Spring Season At Eataly Who says there aren’t any seasons in Los Angeles? From fresh to light and...