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A Family Affair: Rory’s Place, a New Sister-Owned Restaurant in Ojai, CA


We first got to know the fabulous McAuliffe sisters in the early days of blogging, when we discovered a mysterious site called You Are the River, by interior designer Fay McAuliffe (see: Designer Visit: Faye McAuliffe in Venice, LA). So we took note when Faye’s sister, Rory, clued us in to a new restaurant in Ojai, CA, which she is launching with a third sister, Meave. (A creativity gene runs in the family.)

“Rory’s Place is a collaboration between us—sisters Rory and Meave McAuliffe,” Rory says. “We grew up playing in the kitchen of our mom’s bakery in Santa Monica in the 1990s, and we’ve been cooking together ever since. My sister Meave is the chef. And I designed the restaurant with the help of Winston and Ted of LA-based Dusk.Work, who also did all the custom woodworking and concrete stuff, including the bar facade, stone tables, shelves, and banquettes. Our dad, David McAuliffe, of Milwood Design, contributed a custom-made Custom Rush Bench for the entrance (see his work at Stahl + Band in LA and Fair in NYC).

Join us for a tour:

Photography by Lou Mora.

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Above: The slatted Click outdoor dining chairs are from Danish brand Houe.
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Above: The restaurant is located on the western edge of the town’s main drag.
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Above: A suite of Louis Poulsen Wohlert pendants runs down the center of the dining room; the sconces above the bar are Artemide Dioscuri globe lights.
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Above: An Ingo Maurer Floatation suspension lamp hovers over a dining table. All paintings are by Kelly McLane.
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Above: The vintage chairs are from Amsterdam Modern. Meave made the ceramic sconces; during the pandemic, she started a pottery practice, and made many of the serving dishes.
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Above: The patchwork tapestry is by Ashley Eva Brock, and the vintage Arthur Umanoff barstools were sourced on Craigslist.
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Above: The hand-thrown stoneware Contessa Mugs are from  PPK Ceramics.
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Above: Roni Ginach, an importer and distributor of natural wines, oversees the list at Rory’s.
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Above: A vintage copper tub holds a selection of wines.
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Above: Cooking with fire is an integral part of the culinary program,
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Above: The talented and passionate team.

For more California cool, see:

‘Old California’ in an Updated 1907 Arts & Crafts-Style House in Los Angeles

A Serene, Well-Balanced House for a Violinist and a Physician, Inspired by Vivaldi


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