PUPU - Eric Greenspan - Los Angeles magazine
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Eric Greenspan

The Foundry on Melrose



The Foundry on Melrose
7465 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90046
(323) 651-0915
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Photograph by James and James Productions

Chili Glazed Spam with Saffron Pineapple Risotto and Coconut Crusted Shrimp

Serves 4


  • 2 tins of Spam, cut ½
  • 1 onion, peeled, rough cut
  • 1 carrot, peeled, rough cut
  • 1 celery stalk, rough cut
  • 1 knob of ginger, peeled, sliced thin
  • 1 red pepper, seeded and rough cut
  • 2 tbls chili powder
  • 1 tbls black peppercorns
  • 3 bay leaves, fresh
  • 1 ½ cups dry sake
  • 3 cups pineapple juice
  • 3 tbls honey
  • ¼ cup pineapple dice
  • ¼ cup red onion dice
  • ¼ cup red pepper dice
  • large pinch saffron threads
  • 1 cup risotto rice
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/8 pound unsalted butter, cubed
  • 2 leaves chiffonade shiso
  • 2 whole shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 egg yolk, beaten
  • 2 cups shredded coconut
  • 2 leaves green shiso, torn


In a large saucepot, sweat onions, carrots, ginger, celery, red peppers and chili powder until translucent. Deglaze with 1 cup sake, reduce by 2/3, then add pineapple juice, black peppercorns, and bay leaf and simmer for 30 minutes. Add Spam, and continue to simmer for one hour. Remove spam from liquid, strain, add honey and reduce until syrup consistency. Fry the spam in a 375 degree deep fryer until crispy all around, and brush with the reduction.


Sweat pineapple dice, red onion dice and red pepper dice in a medium saucepan with saffron. Add risotto rice and sweat until slightly toasted. Add sake and reduce til dry. Add coconut milk and cook while continually stirring until rice is cooked throughout (add water if necessary). Stir in butter and, when melted, add chiffonade shiso.


Dip the shrimp in egg yolk, roll in shredded coconut, then deep fry at 375 degrees until golden brown. Cut each shrimp into 3 equal size pieces.

 To Finish

In a small bowl, place a large spoonful of the rice mixture. Tear the remaining shrimp by hand and mix with the shrimp cubes, placing this salad on top of the risotto. Top with Spam brushed with the chili reduction.



Eric Greenspan

Eric Greenspan began his foray into the restaurant business as a dish washer at the Café Med, a Berkeley breakfast establishment for over 4o years. Two weeks late he had reached the head chef position, and for the next three years served as head chef and general manager of the café that generated over $1 million in revenue.

Following his graduation from the University of California, Berkeley’s prestigious Haas School of Business with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Eric attended acclaimed Le Cordon Bleu culinary school in Paris, France. He went on to train in New York with such celebrated chefs as Alain Ducasse, David Bouley, and Rocco DeSpirito, as well as apprenticing at 3 star Michelin chef Ferran Adria’s El Bulli in Rosas, Spain.

As Executive chef for almost two years at Los Angeles’ world acclaimed Patina Restaurant, Eric Greenspan has been named as one of Angeleno Magazine’s “Eight Hot Chefs” in 2003, as well as garnering critical acclaim for his imaginative and bold cuisine. His kitchen scored a 27/30 in the 2004 Zagat Guide for food quality and was the top ranked French Restaurant in that same publication, while still maintaining high marks for overall popularity

In the fall of 2004 Eric teamed up with Tim Goodell and Domaine Restaurants to open Meson G in the former Citrus restaurant location on Melrose Avenue. Eric was involved in and responsible for all pre-opening aspects of the project, including restaurant and kitchen design, overseeing construction, menu formulation, initial staffing, budgeting, and acquisition of restaurant assets and equipment. Meson G opened to rave reviews and a profitable business, receiving 2 ½ stars from the Los Angeles Times, 4 stars from Angeleno Magazine, and achieving $250,000 of monthly sales revenue after only 12 weeks of operation. However, operational and creative differences led to the eventual firing of Greenspan, resulting in public disapproval and declining sales.

In the Spring of 2007, Eric opened The Foundry on Melrose to rave reviews and resounding success. The Foundry was awarded 2 ½ stars from the Los Angeles Times, was runner-up for Los Angeles Magazines “Best New Restaurant”. The Foundry further garnered Conde Nast Traveler Magazine’s Best New Restaurant and was a semi-finalist for The James Beard Foundation’s Best New Restaurant in the country. With it’s swanky bar, live jazz, and un-surpassed cuisine, The Foundry on Melrose has already established itself as a player on the Los Angeles Scene, having been selected in Los Angeles Magazine’s Top 75, as well as Johnathan Gold of LA Weekly’s the “Essential 99”.

Eric has made appearances on numerous food related television and radio programs, and has been written up in such noted industry publications as the New York Times, Wine Spectator, Art Culinaire, Los Angeles Confidential, Angeleno, and Los Angeles Magazine.

In 2009, Eric was a finalist on The Food Network’s “The Next Iron Chef”, was 944 Magazine’s “Most Buzzworthy Chef in America”, and was a featured guest dj on KCRW 89.9. He has been a featured contributor on The Food Network “The Best Thing I Ever Ate” and recently defeated bobby Flay on Iron Chef America. He is currently planning the opening of his second restaurant, a quickserve concept called Greenspan’s Grilled Cheese”.