David Vanlochem started baking at the age of six. Vanlochem, a self-taught baker, has traveled the world and is now the talk of Hollywood with his cookie lab and restaurant hybrid, Duidough, located at 6334 Selma Ave. We sat down with David to get to know him better and hear his incredible story.
The Vibe of Hollywood: When did you start in the Hollywood food scene?
David Vanlochem: I’ve lived all over the world and when I finally moved back to the States, I thought the lifestyle of a salesman would suit me. I had an interview with a company in San Francisco and they asked me “Why do you want this job?” I literally had no answer for them. I didn’t care or really want the job. So I moved back to Hollywood and a family friend who owned a coffee shop needed baked goods, so I made a few things. He called me back the next day and said he needed more. I started to look at the bigger picture and baked a bunch of cookies to drop off at various businesses. That’s how I picked up my second client, The Pantages Theatre. Around the corner from the theatre was a café that needed an in-house baker, and they hired me. I’ve since taken over that space, and it’s where we’re located today.
Vibe: When Duidough first opened, how were you received?
DV: I had this initial shock of “How do I get people in the door?” I grew up in this neighborhood and that’s what got my foot in the door to a lot of places, it benefited me. I knew how to relate and understand these people. I still live in the area, which also benefits me as I meet new people. People have positively received us since the beginning, and it continues to grow and develop into more. We have regulars now and we know their orders as soon as they come through the door.
VIBE: What are some of the fan favorites or bestsellers?
DV: On the cookie side of business, people love the Chocolate Chip Cookies, which I have been making since I was six years old. They are made all by hand and are very labor intensive. It never disappoints. The other cookie that is incredible is the Brown Butter Cookie. It is a personal favorite of mine and I have a unique process in cooking the butter down. On the café side of business, the Challah Bread French Toast, which soaks for 24 hours, is a huge seller. Other great sellers are the Breakfast Burrito, Fried Chicken Sandwich, and the Homemade Almond, Cashew and Coconut Milks. I use the pulp from the Almond, Cashew and Coconut Milks in our Homemade Granola and it is to die for.
VIBE: How have you seen Hollywood evolve?
DV: You can definitely see and feel a shift to a more upscale neighborhood. With the addition of 3rdBase Restaurant, everything happening over at the Dream Hotel, the Godfrey Hotel, and the mall on De Longpre Ave, as well as the countless apartments being built. There has been tons of business and wealth being injected into the neighborhood. There is construction going on everywhere and it is exciting to see all of the development going on.
VIBE: What are a few of your personal favorite restaurants in the area?
DV: My favorites are Katsuya, Bon Oui, Fabiolas, Perfect Pita, and ultimately our food since the menu is secretly designed after everything I love to eat.
VIBE: What’s next for you?
DV: Everyone thinks the next logical step is to open a second location. I just want to put all my focus on this store!
Last modified: May 23, 2019