Main image for profile titled Melissa Kalb
In 2003, Melissa Saka began her restaurant career as a hostess during college. She spent the next 14 years in restaurants, most notably 8 years with Hillstone. In June of 2018, with her now husband Jackson Kalb, Melissa opened Jame Enoteca in El Segundo. Jame earned such accolades as “Los Angeles’ Best New Restaurants of 2018” from Infatuation, “The Top Los Angeles Restaurant Newcomers of 2018” from Eater, and “The 15 Best New Los Angeles Restaurants of 2018” from Time Out. In September 2020 in the middle of the pandemic, Melissa and Jackson opened their sophomore concept, Ospi short for “ospitante” or “host” in Italian. Ospi earned “LA’s 10 Best New Restaurants of 2020” from Los Angeles Magazine, as well as “The 15 Best New Los Angeles Restaurants of 2020” from Time Out. Most recently, Melissa's husband Jackson is on this season of Top Chef. Melissa attributes the majority of their success to two elements: 1. WE PUT OUR STAFF FIRST. Staff comes before ourselves, our guests, our investors, our vendors, etc. We need to ensure the well being of our employees, above all. This is crucial to to our growth as a business. 2. WALK THE WALK. We don't ask anyone to do anything that we wouldn't do ourselves. We like to hustle and lead by example. Whether it be washing dishes, bussing tables, or even cleaning a toilet; nothing earns respect like leader who does it all, and does a damn good job at it!