At the young age of 26, this female chef is making her mark. Chef Cindy Rizzoli of R10 Social House in Redondo Beach is breaking down the stereotypes and reinventing R10’s kitchen and menu. Her love for cooking led her into her first restaurant job as a barback — and her quick wit, determination and ability to learn quickly led her to the kitchen, cooking alongside the head chef. While attending the Culinary Institute of America in New York, Cindy worked for the previous White House Chef Walter Scheib, where she helped create dinners for hundreds of people and learned the creative ins and outs of the kitchen.
Now, she’s back in Southern California, cooking up R10’s awesome dishes in Redondo Beach’s King Harbor. The menu includes the delicious Heaven Hill Whiskey Loaf, Boardwalk Sprouts, and the Grand Stand Short Ribs. “Working in the South Bay has been such an honor and amazing experience,” Chef Cindy says. “I respect all the restaurants around me as I am inspired by they’re flavors and support. R10 is absolutely a home away from home to me.”
Chef Cindy was nice enough to answer a few questions for us. Check out the answers below.
What was your main inspiration for the menu at R10?
The menu for R10 is universal for everyone, locals and tourists. The menu is meant to be fun, and the ingredients to be recognized, new and adventurous to others.
What was it like working for previous White House Chef Walter Scheib and what lessons did you take away from that experience?
Working for White House Chef Scheib was a great experience. He carried himself in the kitchen in such a way where you were careful not to mess up, all the while putting a smile on your face. It was an intense experience, but wouldn’t trade it for the world.
What are some of the most popular items at R10?
Popular items consist of chicken & waffles, thai curry mussels, castelvetrano fried olives, the gem wedge salad and only during the summer…. summer sesh! One of my favorites
What is your favorite dish on the menu and why?
My favorite dish on the menu hands down is the Grand Stand Short Rib and the Brick Chicken. There are so many star ingredients in both dishes. But also they are fun making because they are not just recipes but challenging culinary technique. Making pistachio mole and teaching my cooks how to perform a perfect pincaige when making the demi sauce is always exciting.