MR. T | Q&A with Guillaume Guedj

A conversation with the restaurateur.

Written by

Gabriella Madden

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Courtesy of MR. T Los Angeles

Mr. T Los Angeles is a contemporary French Restaurant in Hollywood conceptualized by restaurateur Guillaume Guedj. Mr. T is inspired by upscale street food dishes, and has an emphasis on fresh and local ingredients. The restaurant also carries a variety of hand-crafted cocktails and a uniquely selected wine list from producers all over the world. It combines classic Mr. T dishes from their original Paris location, with new dishes inspired by head chef Alisa Vannah's hometown of Los Angeles. Vannah has cooked at a variety of restaurants in Los Angeles, and trained under Mr. T co-owner Tsuyoshi Miyazaki in Paris. Vannah and Miyazaki collaborated on dishes that are unique to the Los Angeles location, such as a chicken pot pie made with caramelized onions and tare chicken jus, and a big eye tuna crudo inspired by her trips down to Redondo Beach as a child. It's dishes like these that utilize fresh ingredients from Southern California that create the unique and authentic dining experience of Mr. T.

An accomplished restaurateur, Guedj has opened and oversees several restaurants back in Paris, starting with the two Michelin starred Passages 53 in 2009, and subsequently Gyoza Bar, Ramen Bar, and the Hôtel Bachaumont, among others in locations in and around Paris. Upon the success of the original Mr. T in Paris, Guedj and Miyazaki decided to take Mr. T stateside. The Los Angeles location had been in development since late 2019, but was pushed back multiple times due to the pandemic. Mr. T finally opened its doors in August 2022, to rave reviews and people flocking to the restaurant in droves. Flaunt spoke to Guedj about the restaurant, the culinary scene in LA, and future plans. 

What initially prompted you to expand Mr. T to Los Angeles? 

When deciding on a location for Mr. T, I was drawn to Los Angeles because of the many close connections and friends I’ve made here throughout the years. What ultimately influenced my decision was a trip to the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market. Seeing the vast variety of great local products was awe-inspiring.

What do you think Mr. T contributes to the French cuisine scene in LA?

The concept behind Mr. T is elevated street food prepared in a contemporary French way. We give guests the ability to travel the world through our menu with globally influencer flavors. At Mr. T, you can have a dish from Thailand, a dish from Japan, or a dish from Mexico and that’s the beauty of it. It’s amazing that I have the opportunity to bring this to LA because it is something that is very different. We’ve curated a great playlist of old school hip-hop music in a uniquely industrial space that creates a perfect backdrop for the food. These aspects all come together to create a Mr. T experience unique to LA.

What do you hope people take home with them after experiencing at night at Mr. T?

I want guests to feel as though they got to travel the world through Mr. T. We’ve collected our favorite street food dishes from across the world and compiled them on our menu. The purpose of our global concept is to bring people together, and Mr. T is meant to be a blank canvas for multi-cultural flavors.

What can we look forward to, are there new plans for greater expansion?

Yes, there is always something new happening at Mr. T! We’re always updating the menu to highlight the latest seasonal finds – right now we have a great “Thai” Scallop Crudo. We’re also in the process of updating our cocktail menu and wine list. We’ve got a great outdoor space that will be opening with its own select menu once the weather warms up a bit as well. The beauty of the concept is that it’s always evolving.

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Mr. T, Guillaume Guedj