From a young age, Chef Ross was exposed to a variety of exciting cuisines, as his foodie dad enjoyed taking the kids out to a conglomeration of restaurants on a regular basis. Additionally, home-cooking was also prevalent in Chef’s life as his grandparents would often cook up traditional Filipino dishes for the family. He even remembers his dad bringing home live blue crabs from the market in New York and cooking them for dinner. Chef Ross’s family also moved states several times. Chef was born in Tennessee, lived in New York for a while, and when he was in the second grade, his family settled in California. It is no surprise then, that Chef Ross is influenced by a number of cuisines for his menus.
His culinary knowledge expanded further after his childhood days of watching popular cooking shows on television. Chef’s very first job was as a cook at Knowlwood. Chef attended culinary school at Le Cordon Bleu in Pasadena for one year, finishing in 2002. After school, Chef Ross went to work at the Big Canyon Country Club where the head chef sent him to work in France. At 20 years old, Chef got to work at a two Michelin Star restaurant in Versailles for four months. This experience allowed him to further explore French cuisine. He also thoroughly enjoyed getting lost in Paris without a cell phone and being old enough to drink. When he was back in California, Chef embarked on a number of culinary endeavors. These included learning about sushi, which didn’t interest him, and helping open Blanca, which ultimately didn’t work out. In 2008, after these few minor setbacks, Chef began working for a Michelin Star restaurant in Downtown L.A. owned by Patina. From there he went to Vegas for a year to open Encore for and then came back to California to work at Leatherby’s for seven years where he served patrons of the Segerstrom Center for the Arts before shows and was on his way home by 7:30 p.m. As opportunities for chefs go, it was a very comfortable job, but Chef Ross gave it all up so he could create something new.
With help from a friend, Chef opened the globally inspired Mix Mix Kitchen Bar, soon to celebrate its two-year anniversary. The restaurant’s success allowed Chef Ross the freedom to create another concept; Terrace by Mix Mix at South Coast Plaza, which just opened in early September. After getting a taste of freedom from Mix Mix, Chef caught the creative bug and wanted to create another unique and diverse menu at Terrace. The new restaurant is cool, inventive, and precise, much like Chef Ross himself. From the menu and the flavors, it is clear that Chef Ross is closely connected to all the cuisines he’s mastered over the years. However, Chef is still humble, and continues to assert that if you dip anything in the right vinegar, it will taste good. Proper training of staff is very important to Chef Ross and he takes pride in his staff’s ability to run a smooth ship in his absence. While Chef does work long hours, he also enjoys coaching his daughter’s soccer team which forces him to get out of the kitchen a couple of days a week. Now, Chef loves to take his wife, son and daughter out to eat for family meals, giving his children the exposure to cuisine that sparked his own skyrocketing career.
KITCHEN TOOL Bread knife
KITCHEN APPLIANCE Vitaprep
COOKWARE Teflon pan
CONDIMENT Spicy cane vinegar
DISH TO EAT Adobo
JUNK FOOD Potato Chips
RAW INGREDIENT Salmon
FAST FOOD In N Out
SIGNATURE OR FAVORITE DISH TO MAKE Pork Cheek Adobo
BIGGEST CULINARY INFLUENCE Theo Schoenegger – he is an incredible delegator.
TRAVELED TO FOR CULINARY RESEARCH Europe
OTHER CUISINES French & Italian
CULINARY STYLE Fresh, flavor, good
MANAGEMENT STYLE Fair, analytic, delegate
YOUR LAST SUPPER Lomo Saltado & Chicha Morada
CHARITY AFFILIATIONS OC Roosters, March Of Dimes
ADVICE TO STUDENTS Put your head down and work
Terrace by Mix Mix
3333 Bear St #316, Costa Mesa, CA 92626
ESTABLISHED September 2018
HOURS Monday-Thursday 11 AM – 9 PM Friday-Saturday 11 AM – 10 PM Sunday 11 AM – 7 PM
AVERAGE COVER Lunch: $23 Dinner: $45