About The Owner, Jerry Baker
Jerry Baker is a self-made man who began his career in food almost 30 years ago with nothing but a love of food and a passion to create. Today he and his wife Chris co-own the popular taqueria TINGA, as well as The Food Matters catering service. The Bakers have been catering since 1994 and opened Tinga La Brea in 2010. Known for its fast, fresh, flavorful, classic-inspired Mexican dishes, the original TINGA emerged as one of the city’s top taquerias and has been praised by esteemed food critic Jonathan Gold. Whether it’s at his restaurant or his catering business, Baker is known for making delicious food quickly, which is why it can be noted with a dollop of irony that TINGA was a restaurant 27 years in the making!
A Little Backstory
In 1983 Baker visited his best friend in Santa Barbara and they ate at La Super-Rica, the famed local taco shack beloved by none other than Julia Child. Baker knew during his first visit to La Super-Rica that someday he’d open a taqueria. What he didn’t know was that it would take three decades to get him there. In 2008 producer Michael LaFetra requested that Mexican food be served at his wedding in the style of La Super-Rica. Wedding planner Lisa Vorce of “Oh, How Charming!” recommended Baker’s catering service. LaFetra and Baker soon became friends. That same year, Baker served tacos at entertainment lawyer Joel McKuin’s wedding. Again, the tacos were a smash. In 2010 Baker, LaFetra and McKuin opened TINGA. The Food Matters is a catering company whose menu items are rooted in the foods Baker has enjoyed during his leisure time and travels. The name of the company speaks to its philosophy.