Mary Sue Milliken

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Mary Sue Milliken
OccupationCelebrity chef

Mary Sue Milliken is an American chef, restaurateur, cookbook author, and radio and TV personality working mostly on Latin cuisine in the United States.



After working together in Chicago and Paris, Milliken and her longtime collaborator, Susan Feniger, settled in Los Angeles where they founded the critically acclaimed City Cafe in 1981.[1] They eventually expanded to a larger space on La Brea Avenue, renaming the establishment CITY Restaurant. In 1985, they opened the Mexican restaurant Border Grill in the original City Cafe space, before moving it to Santa Monica in 1990. The restaurant later expanded to Pasadena (closed) and the Mandalay Bay Resort in Las Vegas.[2] Broadening their culinary horizons, Milliken and her partner opened Ciudad in Los Angeles in 1998. The success of the three restaurants has often led Milliken and Feniger to be recognized for single-handedly changing Los Angeles' culinary landscape.[3]

Publishing and television/film[edit]

In collaboration with Feniger and others, Milliken has published five cookbooks: City Cuisine (1989), Mesa Mexicana (1994), Cantina: The Best of Casual Mexican Cooking(1996), Cooking with Too Hot Tamales (1997) and Mexican Cooking for Dummies (1999/2002).[4]

Milliken is also a seasoned TV personality, starring with Feniger in 396 episodes of Too Hot Tamales and Tamales World Tour on the Food Network in the 1990s. Prior to the shows on the Food Network, in 1993 Milliken and Feniger appeared with Julia Child in her PBS series Cooking with Master Chefs.[5] Milliken also prepared with Feniger the food that was served in the 2001 movie, Tortilla Soup.

Milliken and partner Feniger were a team of sixteen chefs featured on the Julia Child PBS series, COOKING WITH MASTER CHEFS, 1993, with recipes featured in the series cookbook.

Most recently, Milliken appeared on the third season of Top Chef Masters that aired in 2011. She was the first runner up and won $40,000 for her charity, Share Our Strength.[6]

Personal life[edit]

Milliken is a graduate of Chicago's Washburne Culinary Institute. She currently lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Josh Schweitzer, and their two sons. Milliken also serves on the Board of Directors of Share Our Strength.[7]


  1. ^ Jenkins, Kathie. "You'll Never Eat Lunch in This City Again". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 3/27/94. Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  2. ^ "Border Grill at Mandalay Bay Las Vegas".
  3. ^ Gold, Jonathan. "Border Grill: 99 Essential Restaurants 2011". LA Weekly. Retrieved 22 November 2011.
  4. ^ "About Mary Sue and Susan".
  5. ^ "Featured Chef: Chefs Mary Sue Milliken And Susan Feniger".
  6. ^ "Mary Sue Milliken Top Chef Masters Contestant Bio". Bravo. Archived from the original on 2011-11-13.
  7. ^ "No Kid Hungry Blog: Chef Mary Sue Milliken". Archived from the original on 2011-11-17.