When juice bars and vegan cafes are more ubiquitous than Starbucks, you'd think it eating wholesome, palate-pleasing food would be a cinch in Los Angeles. It's an entirely different story once you arrive home completely wiped out, and neither that ready-to-chop box of produce nor the dinner options on Postmates seem appealing to your health-minded tastebuds.
For those who want to eat clean at home — whether it's adhering to a vegetarian diet, going paleo, or detoxing — but are finding that on demand delivery apps are draining their meal budget, it's totally possible to enjoy organic gourmet food at home without breaking the bank. That's the idea behind Kooshi Gourmet, an affordable fresh food delivery service created by wife-and-husband chefs Amanda and Albert Melera.
They've whipped up grub for everyone from Arianna Huffington and Bill Gates to Salma Hayek and Jennifer Aniston to Kobe Bryant and Adam Sandler, to name just a few. But you don't need a megastar-sized wallet to enjoy the Meleras' dishes: Single meals start at $24.50, two meals per day start at $35.50, and three meals per day start at $58.50, and can be customized by preference, calorie size, and more. For just $10, you can add on extras like pressed juice and a protein snack.
Everything on Kooshi's menu is hormone- and gluten-free, locally sourced, natural, and organic whenever possible, and portion sizes are available in 1500 or 2500 calorie options. You can even let them know ingredients to exclude (don't like cilantro? No biggie!) and how frequent you'd like your meals to arrive at your doorstep (5-, 10-, 20- to 40-day packages are available; food is delivered Monday through Friday).
As far as what's on the menu, expect dishes like meyer lemon pancakes with berries and Greek yogurt for breakfast, grilled organic veggie kabobs for lunch, and grilled steak Mexicana for dinner, depending on your plan. Even better? Everything's ready to be enjoyed immediately: No prepping or cleanup needed.
We had a chat with the Meleras via email to find out more about what they learned from creating food for superstars, their go-to healthy comfort foods, the summer ingredients they're most excited about, and more. Read on below, then order your next meal from Kooshi online here.
Was there an "a-ha" moment that convinced you both to start Kooshi together? How did your past experiences as chefs influence your decision?
Amanda and Albert: We had both been creating menu plans for, at times, very demanding clients in the entertainment industry: Bill Gates, David Geffen, Salma Hayek, Drew Barrymore, Arianna Huffington, Jennifer Aniston, Michael Ovitz, Francois Pinault, Cassie Wasserman, Robert Downey Jr., Kevin James, Kobe Bryant, and Adam Sandler.
We learned to premeditate their needs quickly and effectively. We knew there would be a market for a demographic of discerning clientele who would appreciate this same curated service appreciate quality product and unique cooking styles. We thought how great it would be to be able to provide this type service to the mainstream and from that was born the concept of Kooshi Gourmet.
What did you feel was missing from other food delivery services?
A & A: An attention to detail as well as a sincere love and honest approach to product and where it comes from.
What are each of your go-to healthy "comfort foods"?
A & A: We are both big fans of raw milk dairy products. Homemade ice cream is a big hit at our house both with us and our two boys.
What seasonal ingredients are you most excited about as we head into summer?
A & A: Anaheim chilies are a must, Armenian cucumbers, cantaloupe, heirloom tomatoes of course…and watermelon, sugar apples and hearts of palm.
When you're not busy whipping up recipes for Kooshi, where are some of your favorite places to eat in LA?
A & A: For us its always been a great street taco or the opposite extreme, traveling far and wide to specific food destinations. Our last trip was to Tulum, Mexico where we invited to Noma.