The Hollywood Reporter's 20 Most Influential Chefs in Hollywood
One of L.A.'s most prominent practitioners on the underground tasting-menu scene, Thornton has in just a few short years hijacked the imagination of foodies both local and nationwide.
With his Wolvesmouth, a gastronomy experiment-slash-supper club that he conducts monthly in his downtown L.A. loft, the chef has distinguished himself by employing such dramatic flavor contrasts as halibut with blood orange, coffee, sunflower and beets, to name just one example. While some progressive local chefs have of late shunned self-consciously flashy plating, Thornton, whose website-only reservations are among the most difficult to score in town, unapologetically embraces an asymmetrical spin-art aesthetic that comes from splashes of ultraviolet, neon green and bright yellow sauces.
"It brings movement and energy, a sense of motion," says Thornton. (He plans to soon open a dedicated aboveground location in downtown's Fashion District.) "What I'm saying on a plate is the equivalent of a scream. It's vocal. Think of Freddie Mercury."
Where else Thornton eats: The Hart and the Hunter, where he orders the kale salad.