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Meet Monica Cobb of Monica’s Restaurant in Beaumont

Today we’d like to introduce you to Monica Cobb.

Monica Woodford Cobb loves food. She loves to cook it, eat it, and above all, share it. She comes by her passion honestly, from a long line of foodies and craftspeople. Her family had a grist mill, charcuterie, popcorn farm, and a peanut farm. Monica was taught respect and appreciation for food and where it comes from.

Monica moved from the small southeast Texas town to Los Angeles in 1998 to study the culinary arts. She was hired as a line cook at Spago Hollywood under the direction of Wolfgang Puck and Gina DeCew Moi. She was then awarded a scholarship to West Lake Culinary School under Cecelia De Castro.

After her time at Spago, Monica worked as a private chef, commercial food stylist, and chef at Burning Man for a group of 100 festival attendees. After Burning Man, she made her way to Cairo, Egypt. There she was the chef of a 1901 river steamboat on the Nile.

Monica eventually moved back to southeast Texas and married local artist, John Cobb in 2004. Eight years and two children later, Monica started to pop-up “Renegade Dinners.” Once a month, she would host a private dinner where everything served was “wild caught, shot, and foraged.” This paved the way for Banh Mon Renegade Street Food food trailer where she launched her specialty Banh Mon sandwiches and salads.

Now, you can find Monica in the kitchen of her first brick-and-mortar restaurant. Regular features include grass-fed beef from Rachel Wilson of Wild Earth Texas and fresh local vegetables from Donna’s Farm. Together, they seek to create awareness and understanding of the importance of sustainably raised animals and organic farming.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Every day is a struggle.

Monica’s Restaurant – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
At Monica’s Restaurant, we specialize in using farm fresh vegetables. Whether in composed salads or in support of wild caught fish, the products we use must be of the best quality. Our customers have come to expect this top quality and devotion to excellence.

I am most proud of cultivating an atmosphere of respect and dignity among the staff at Monica’s Restaurant. We strive to maintain professional and courteous relationships with everyone at Monica’s. In light of the recent disturbing allegations against very famous chefs and restaurateurs, it is important to foster a safe and respectful culture in the kitchen.

Kitchens have always been crass and crude old boys clubs. At Monica’s, we are proving that it does not have to be that way.

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
The proudest moment of my career has been opening my restaurant. After many years of training and building a reputation in my community, the work finally paid off.

Contact Info:

Getting in touch: VoyageHouston is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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