Photo by Josh Shaub

Dante Gonzales is chef and founder of Dante Fried Chicken aka DFC. Born in Los Angeles, Dante’s first culinary inspirations came from his grandmother, an eccentric Creole chef who had moved from Louisiana to Los Angeles in the 1960s. After leaving home at the tender age of 13, Dante started in kitchens as a 16-year-old dish washer, working his way up through dive hotels in Missouri and Arizona up to celebrated restaurants including Seattle’s Cafe Septeme and Judy Rodgers’s Zuni Cafe in San Francisco.

It was in 2001 that Dante’s alias became a reality when his KFC RIP fried chicken and biscuits loft parties became an integral part New York City’s nightlife folklore. He started to create dishes inspired by his heritage and grandmother, his own travels and artistic pursuits, inter-weaved with a passion for the local NYC creative community and worldwide food culture. These underground parties took the Dante Fried Chicken experience out of Brooklyn, across the US and to Europe, serving up what he describes as Transatlantic African Cuisine.

In 2010, Dante re-located to Los Angeles to launch Ride or Fry, an award-winning pop-up gourmet food truck winning the Thrillist Best Los Angeles Food Truck and ongoing series of mobile cooking events including regular Brunch Ups at Local in Down Town LA and his Silver Lake Taco Shack. For Dante, food isn’t simply about providing sustenance for the body. It’s a celebration, an experience for the soul – “I like to conceptually connect art, music, fashion, film, community, and food.”

In November 2012, Dante with co-author Terence Teh and creative directors HellaCrisis publish their first cookbook with Sterling Epicure, “Ride or Fry: The Dante Fried Chicken Experience”.

Check out the DFC Cookbook page for full info.

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