Xiomara Ardolina: Owner and Executive Chef
For nearly 30 years, Xiomara Ardolina has been among the most successful fine dining restaurateurs in Los Angeles, starting with The Epicurean (La Canada) in 1979, Xiomara Restaurant (Old Pasadena) in 1991 and Xiomara on Melrose (Hancock Park) in 2003. Known for their charming, intimate ambiance and flavorful food, her restaurants have consistently received acclaim from critics Irene Virbila (LA Times), Ruth Reichl and Bryan Miller (New York Times), Jonathan Gold (LA Magazine) and Merrill Shindler (Pasadena Star).
Daring, bold and never afraid to take a risk, in 1996 Xiomara made a dramatic change to her menu, switching from French style fine dining to Cuban-inspired Nuevo Latino cuisine. Infused with Asian flavors and French technique, her food received national recognition, and, along with famed chef Douglas Rodriguez in New York, she was credited with elevating Latin style cooking to the level of fine dining.
Xiomara has now taken her Melrose Avenue restaurant in another new direction as she shapes a California Cuisine (with a Cuban twist) menu, a style of cooking that emphasizes the use of fresh, locally grown produce and inspires knowledgeable young chefs to be creative and innovative rather than formulaic. In many ways, California Cuisine is the result of the abundance of farmers’ markets, greater public awareness about the production of food, and the appreciation that sophisticated diners have shown for the variety and freshness of locally grown food prepared by a new generation of talented young chefs. Xiomara continues to act as her own executive chef, thus ensuring that her new menu will offer a unique take on California Cuisine and deliver fresh, innovative tastes utilizing creative fusions that have been characteristic of her menus from the very start.
In addition to its new exciting menu, Xiomara on Melrose offers intimate dining, a charming Mediterranean setting and cool jazzy background music. A special bar menu is available from 5:00 – 7:00, Monday through Friday. And yes, Xiomara’s famous Mojito is still available.
Proud of helping shape and enhance the diverse, competitive restaurant landscape of Los Angeles, the strongly independent Xiomara is most proud that she has achieved success on her own and never relied on investors to provide financial backing.
For reservations call 323.461.0601
- Lunch: Mon-Fri 11:30am - 3:00pm
- Dinner: Mon-Thurs, 5:00pm - 10:00pm
Fri-Sat, 5:00pm - 11:00pm
- Closed Sunday