Show 502, December 3, 2022: Katianna Hong, Chef & Partner – Yangban Society and Yangban Super, Arts District, Downtown Los Angeles Part One

Katianna Hong of the Yangban Society

Yangban Society located in The Arts District of Downtown Los Angeles (in the previous home of Bon Temps Restaurant) draws inspiration from Korean flavors and influences with California ingredients. Together, Chef / Proprietors Katianna & John Hong craft dishes that reveal their distinct perspectives and upbringings as Korean Americans, as well as their nuanced culinary approach, refined from their shared time at The Restaurant at Meadowood, The Charter Oak and Mélisse.” Chef Kat Hong takes a break from her busy kitchen to join us.

“Within Yangban Society resides the Yangban Super, a stand-alone specialty minimart. In addition to retail products, housemade pantry staples, snacks and drinks such as Korean fruit milks, face masks, and incense, Yangban Super showcases items from L.A. – based and Asian-American-owned businesses. Carefully-crafted housemade canned and bottled cocktails, interesting wines, beer and Yangban’s custom-made Sawtelle Sake Makgeolli are just a few selections that one can find in the diversified beverage program. The space also gives voice to Katianna’s and John’s passion for Hip Hop, fashion and streetwear culture. This is a reflection of their intension for Yangban Society to speak to their identities outside the kitchen.”

“Born in Korea and raised in upstate New York, Katianna spent much of her childhood training in competitive gymnastics, developing a profound sense of drive and discipline at an early age. After high school, Katianna uncovered her passion for the culinary arts and went on to study at the Culinary Institute of America Hyde Park and the UNLV School of Hospitality. Following graduation, Katianna furthered her education under the acclaimed chef Josiah Citrin at the Michelin two-starred Melisse in Santa Monica, California. Amid long kitchen shifts at Melisse, Katianna met her culinary collaborator and future husband, John. The two relocated to Napa Valley in 2011, where Katianna began working as a line cook at chef Christopher Kostow’s lauded The Restaurant at Meadowood. In 2014, she was named the restaurant’s first-ever chef de cuisine, simultaneously becoming the only female chef de cuisine at a Michelin three-star restaurant in the United States.”

“Following the birth of their daughter, Alessia, Katianna and John relocated to Southern California in 2019 to pursue their dream of opening their first solo restaurant project together. At Yangban Society, Katianna & John offer a multi-dimensional, autobiographical experience that showcases their respective backgrounds and upbringings, while providing standout to-go offerings and a dynamic neighborhood space for locals to gather.”

Standout dishes include Fried White “Soondae” Sausage with Vermicelli noodles, Matzoh Ball Soup with hand-torn Sujebi Dumplings and ethereal Whipped Cheesecake.

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