To practice uncompromising commitment to quality, sourcing the best local ingredients possible, serving innovative, chef-driven and value-focused craft food and drinks in a chic, intimate atmosphere driven by our island hospitality.
Long-time friends Lingo and Lenny grew up cooking in the back kitchens of southern Guam, learning from family and friends while taking in the soul of traditional Chamorro dishes. After high school, they both relocated to the states separately and unknowingly set out on very similar career paths, with the hope of one day returning to their island home.
Their paths crossed briefly in San Diego, where they were both working in various kitchens. Then Lenny relocated to Los Angeles to be with his high school sweetheart, Pika, where she was attending the University of Southern California. Lenny used his time in LA to sharpen his managing skills and continue to expand on his kitchen knowledge.
Meanwhile, Lingo was cutting his teeth working with talented people, such as chef Roy Yamaguchi, helping to open a restaurant as a sous chef in Springfield, Massachusetts. He then made his way back to Southern California and pushed to develop a more refined palette and a deeper understanding in working with the best local, seasonal and sustainable ingredients available.
In 2010, now husband and wife team, Pika and Lenny, moved home to Guam and opened Pika's Café. Though it had very humble beginnings, the success of Pika's Café allowed them to expand and continue growth. With the opportune timing, Lingo moved home to Guam and was hired as a consultant for Pika's Café, helping to streamline the newly expanded kitchen operations.
This first go at a partnership was a test, considering their history and individual passion for the restaurant business. The working relationship that developed came as a surprise – it worked! Lenny and Lingo shared a great deal of respect and understanding amongst each other. Soon after, Pika decided to jump ship from her career path to join the restaurant team full time.
Within two years of their initial partnership in the Pika's Café kitchen, Lenny, Lingo and Pika formed In the Kitchen, Inc. and opened Kitchen Lingo on May 1, 2015. The new concept was received well, and it became clear that the 22 seats were not enough capacity to accommodate large parties comfortably. So, in January 2017, they closed Kitchen Lingo to expand the dining area, and added a full-service bar and lounge. The hours for the restaurant were also limited to dinner only, to allow Chef Lingo to focus his craft and creativity. The full service bar includes top shelf liquor and craft cocktails that are as innovative as Chef Lingo's food.
The synergy of the three can be felt in every aspect of Kitchen Lingo – the taste and kitchen created and carefully watched over by Chef Lingo, the hospitality and training nurtured by Lenny, and the ambiance and decor curated by Pika.
Thank you for your interest and patronage of Kitchen Lingo. We hope we have achieved our goal of creating an intimate, heightened dining experience that is focused on the skills of Chef Lingo and the bounty of our land and sea. Si yu'os ma'åse.