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Update: Kirschner in at Wilshire

February 4, 2008 | 10:34 am

Andrew Kirschner, a veteran of such well-known Southern California restaurants as Joe’s, Chadwick, Table 8 and De Mori, will be taking over the kitchen at Wilshire Restaurant in Santa Monica, according to owner Steven Levine. Kirschner, who has worked at Wilshire as chef for the last eight months, steps into the position vacated by the restaurant’s executive chef, Chris Blobaum, when he resigned Friday.

Blobaum, who was a leader in sustainable cooking in the region, quit over a dispute with Levine about the direction the restaurant was going, saying, “He really wants a bar …five kinds of burgers, meatloaf … that would make him happy.”

In an e-mailed statement from the restaurant’s publicist, Levine praised Blobaum’s efforts and promised Wilshire’s menu would continue to feature “the same farmers market, organic and locally sourced dishes Wilshire has been known for, but presented in a less composed and more accessible style."

“It will also include some lower-priced items and have a more rustic sensibility.... The new menu will feature more familiar items such as seasonally inspired pot pies and meatloaf, as well as dishes such as rigatoni with house-made chorizo and a selection of prime, dry-aged steaks and classic sides.”

-- Russ Parsons