Mary Sue Milliken

Did you know?

Mary Sue has been obsessed with food since she was young and entered culinary school in Chicago at the age of 17. Today, when she’s not in the kitchen, Mary Sue plays soccer four times a week on an over-40 womens’ team and helps raise funds for Share Our Strength.

Photo by:

Mary Sue Milliken is a Los Angeles-based chef, restaurateur, cookbook author, and radio and TV personality.

In 1981, Mary Sue and Susan Feniger opened City Cafe on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles. Their business grew quickly and in just a few years they had opened City Restaurant, which featured dishes from Thailand, India, France, Italy, and Mexico. The business partners then opened The Border Grill, essentially a “taco stand" serving home cooking and street foods of Mexico. Today, Border Grill in Santa Monica serves modern Mexican food in an urban cantina setting. In 1998, Mary Sue and Susan next opened Ciudad in Downtown Los Angeles, a restaurant showcasing the flavors of the Latin world. In 1999, they opened a Border Grill at Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. Their newest joint venture is the Border Grill Truck, a gourmet taco truck that roams the streets of Los Angeles and also caters private parties.


Mary Sue’s television career began in 1993, when she and Susan were invited to cook with Julia Child in her PBS series Cooking with Master Chefs. She and Susan filmed nearly 400  episodes of the popular Too Hot Tamales and Tamales World Tour series for the Food Network in the 1990s, and she has also hosted several radio programs in the Los Angeles area.


Mary Sue and Susan have coauthored five cookbooks: City Cuisine, Mesa Mexicana, Cantina, Cooking with Too Hot Tamales, and Mexican Cooking for Dummies. In 2001, the dishes of Border Grill and Ciudad “starred” in Samuel Goldwyn’s feature film, Tortilla Soup. Mary Sue and Susan also created a line of prepared foods under their Border Girls brand for Whole Foods Market, and a line of signature pepper and salt mills.


As an active member of the community, Mary Sue supports the Career through Culinary Arts Program, a non-profit organization preparing high school students for careers in culinary arts. She is active in numerous culinary associations, including the Chefs Collaborative, and she played a founding role in Women Chefs and Restaurateurs. She contributes time to Share Our Strength, and specifically its fundraiser, Taste of the Nation. She also supports the  Scleroderma Research Foundation in its mission to find a cure for scleroderma, a degenerative life-threatening illness.


Mary Sue lives in the Los Angeles area. Her web site is The website for Share our Strenghth's Taste of the Nation in Los Angeles is



See Mary Sue's Recipes

Latest Recipes

Crepes Cajeta Added on Feb 4, 2010
Rice Pilaf with Chick Peas Added on Feb 4, 2010
Sweet Potato Fries Added on Feb 4, 2010


Border Grill Downtown LA

445 S. Figueroa St.
Los Angeles, Calif. 90071

Border Grill Las Vegas

Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino
3950 Las Vegas Blvd. South
Las Vegas, Nevada 89119

Border Grill Santa Monica

1445 4th St.
Santa Monica, Calif. 90401


Thanks for signing up!

You'll receive an activation email in your inbox shortly. Don't forget to click that link and activate your new account!

Already a member? Sign in here

Sign up for Cookstr!

  • Receive a free, handpicked selection of recipes in your inbox weekly
  • Save, share and comment on your favorite recipes in My Cookstr
  • Get updates on new cookbooks, Cookstr features, and other exclusives we know you'll love
By signing up you accept the
Terms of Use and Privacy Policy
New to Cookstr? Sign up here
Thanks for commenting!
Would you like to share your comment on Facebook or Twitter?