By Chef Katie Averill
Chef Manny Velasco is the super sous chef at Savannah Chop House. With major staying power, he has been at the top through ten years and five executive chefs. Manny’s enthusiasm and seemingly endless energy are a requirement for his busy work life. In addition to his full time position at Savannah, Manny works a complete morning shift as executive chef running the brand new Carmelita’s in Laguna Beach.
Manny is devoted to running the back of the house. He and Executive Chef Chris Tzorin make a great team. When they create dishes together, Manny is passionate about making sure the food and the cooks are ready to go, while Chris is more likely to be amongst the customers making sure they love the menu.
Manny has earned his position at Savannah. Since the age of seventeen he has worked all around Orange County, from Marie Calender’s to the Montage. Manny loves working at Savannah and makes sure that he puts his touch on every plate that goes out.
Chef/Owner EAT STREET
Please visit www.eatstreetculinary.com for latest on cooking classes.
Savannah Chop House
32441 Golden Lantern
Laguna Niguel, CA 92677
Sun – Thurs 5:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Fri – Sat 5:00 pm – 11:00 pm
Bar & Lounge: Open nightly 4:30pm – closing
Average cover – $45
Chef de Cuisine Jose Manny Velasco
WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST HOSPITALITY JOB? Marie Callender’s
WHAT WOULD YOU BE IF NOT A CHEF? A lawyer
YOUR FAVORITE SPICE? Cumin
YOUR FAVORITE KITCHEN TOOL? Tongs
WHICH FOOD SOURCE DO YOU RECOMMEND MOST? Produce at Melissas.com, Trader Joes, and Whole Foods
BIGGEST MYTH ABOUT WORKING IN THE KITCHEN? That you get a day off; you work even while you’re sleeping!
SIGNATURE OR FAVORITE DISH TO MAKE? Veal steaks
FAVORITE OC RESTAURANT: Carmelita’s
FAVORITE DISH TO EAT: Filet
FAVORITE JUNK FOOD: Tacos
FAVORITE RAW INGREDIENT: Spinach
FAVORITE FAST FOOD: Burgers
PREVIOUS INDUSTRY EMPLOYERS: Montage Hotel , , Sundried Tomato