Café del Rey toasts its kitchen with a special six-course wine dinner

Chef Adrian Vela is leaving Marina del Rey for Westwood — but not without a party

Chef Adrian Vela is leaving Marina del Rey for Westwood — but not without a party

Café del Rey celebrates 25 years in Marina del Rey and a changing of the guard in its kitchen with a special “Bless the Chefs” wine dinner on Thursday, Feb. 25.

The celebratory feast features an eclectic menu of six gourmet dinner courses, each paired with a specialty wine by the restaurant’s in-house Tavistock Collection.

Soon Café del Rey head chef Adrian Vela will be taking charge of Westwood Village sister restaurant Napa Valley Grille, and Napa Valley Grille’s Chef David Vilchez is going to be taking over for Vela in Marina del Rey.

But next week’s dinner is a celebration of all six chefs who lead both restaurants — each of them overseeing one of the six courses, Café Del Rey General Manager Brian Cousins said.

“We really have a great collection of chefs, and we decided that this dinner can showcase all of them,” said Cousins. “Both restaurants are chef-driven, and we change our menu every three to four months. We don’t rest on any dish that might have been here in some olden time. That’s the only way to stay strong for 25 years — you have to be current.”

And the coming change of the guard is a good thing for everybody, he added.

“Adrian got a nice bump into a good position, because the location in Westwood is a bigger restaurant, so they’ll do a lot more than we do. For David, it’s a good opportunity to do fine dining. We’re by the ocean and we do more of a seafood program, which will be new for him,” said Cousins.

“We think this celebration is the perfect way to kick off the new year,” he said.

— Chase Maser


“Bless the Chefs” begins at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 25, at Café Del Rey, 4451 Admiralty Way, Marina del Rey. Dinner is $100 per person. Call (310) 823-6395 to reserve a seat and visit to learn more about the chefs.