Restaurant fuses array of cuisines

The Combine Kitchen has been busy since its grand opening three months ago, serving timeless and tasty plates to guests alongside genuine coffee and hand-crafted food.

Mike Lee, owner of The Combine Kitchen, is paving his own path through the Inland Empire with a 2,200-squarefoot restaurant in Rancho Cucamonga with one-of-a-kind taste, assembly, design and culinary influence.

Although the business, located at 12750 E Foothill Blvd, has fluctuating hours as Lee experiments with scheduling, the menu delivers in terms of taste and diversity.

“I thought to myself, “What if I created an ultimate place? Like a kid who thinks, ‘I want to do this or that when I grow up,’” Lee said. “What if I actually got to do all of those things? What would it look like?”

As an entrepreneur, coffee enthusiast and food enthusiast, Lee has created a space that combines quality coffee from multiple roasters with whole-food, no-preservative cuisine that is all made in house and appeals to vegan, gluten-free and paleo guests.

“I didn’t want to just ‘sell food,’ I wanted to make everything a specialty,” Lee said. “We have a real chef with an intense background. She has traveled around the world, worked for famous people in a corporate environment and big name restaurants and brought all of those aspects here.”

Grace Lee, Lee’s sister and head chef of The Combine Kitchen, creates all of the artisanal products on the menu.

After working exclusively with Mario Balotelli, professional Italian soccer player, and Nancy Silverton, professional chef, and traveling to over 22 countries for personal and business affairs, Grace Lee’s method of preparing and cooking has transferred over into her unique and personable style.

“A lot of my food is influenced by traveling,” Grace Lee said. “There’s a root source in my influence, my style; the way I look at ingredients also comes from working with Nancy Silverton, who has been a great mentor. The way I cook is the way I eat.”

Grace Lee’s extensive background with Italian foods impacts the meals on the gradually expanding menu as The Combine Kitchen continues to grow.

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