Remembering California cuisine pioneer Mark Peel

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“He was a very intellectual chef in a lot of ways, but also at the same time visceral and loved being close to the grill,” says Laurie Ochoa of Mark Peel, who died last month. Photo by Katie Falkenberg.

There are a handful of names that define California cuisine, and Mark Peel was one of them. A few weekends ago, on Father’s Day, he passed away to an aggressive form of cancer. Los Angeles Times Entertainment Arts Deputy Editor Laurie Ochoa remembers the chef who defined “urban rustic,” a term coined by the late Jonathan Gold to describe the casual way Californians liked to eat.

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Evan Kleiman