The Real Story Behind Wolfgang Puck's Spago Menu

No matter what type of cuisine a restaurant is serving or what approach a chef takes, the fact is that a lot of time and effort goes into planning the menu. This is the case whether a restaurant changes its menu seasonally a few times throughout the year, whether they change it even more frequently, or even if they keep the same classics for years on end. Not to mention, chefs may have to adjust their menu in response to customer feedback — if there are certain dishes that are just never getting ordered, they may need to come off the menu, no matter how much the chef loves them.

As We Are Chefs explains, during the menu development process chefs want to be thinking of bringing their own personality into the menu, about the vendors they have and the types of quality products they can get, the cost of the ingredients that will be needed for the dish, and much more. As Chef Christian Kruse told the publication, the process can take "days, weeks, even months."

You would likely assume that a renowned restaurant like Wolfgang Puck's Spago put a ton of time and thought into its menu, with Puck himself endlessly revamping and reconsidering just about every dish on offer in order to put his best culinary foot forward. However, in a short TikTok clip, Puck himself revealed just how long it took to develop the menu at his Beverly Hills restaurant.

Puck's speedy Spago menu development

In the TikTok clip, Puck was seated in the dining room of his restaurant as food content creator Paul Ryu asked him to clarify just how long it took to create Spago's menu. Though there were likely endless preparations that went into actually launching the restaurant, it seems he left the menu to the last minute — as Puck confessed to Ryu, the original Spago menu was crafted within 24 hours of the restaurant's opening. In fact, the timeline was so short that they weren't even able to get a properly printed menu. Instead, Puck just wrote out the options that diners could choose from by hand.

And, though you might assume that a chef would test every dish over and over again before serving it to customers experiencing their restaurant for the very first time in order to ensure they had the perfect dining experience, it seems that Puck trusted his taste buds. As he told Ryu, he simply tasted the food in the kitchen as it was being made, making adjustments on the fly in order to deliver his culinary vision to his customers.

Puck's willingness to come up with a menu on short notice has served him well throughout his career — the renowned chef has catered everything from celebrity weddings (he was the chef behind Paris Hilton's 2021 wedding menu, as per People) to the Oscars, where his team has dished up dinner to the stars for over 25 years, as PartySlate reports.