Long Beach community remembers Panxa Cocina Chef Arthur Gonzalez

The Long Beach community has left flowers, candles and signs outside Panxa Cocina, where chef Arthur Gonazlez cooked.
LONG BEACH, Calif. (KABC) -- Arthur Gonzalez, known as Chef Art at Panxa Cocina, was a friend to many in Long Beach. He was also a chef in Colorado, splitting his time between the two places.

Gonzalez suffered a heart attack at his home earlier this month and later passed away.

"He always said there was nothing less than that mamba mentality, just charging forward and being the best he can be," said Isabelle Kline, Gonzalez's sister.

"I cannot tell you the endless amount of line cooks, sous chefs, now probably executive chefs, servers that have depended on and seen Art as the reason why they're in the hospitality business," said Brian Addison, writer and editor of LongBeachize.

Addison named Panxa Cocina one of the best restaurants in the city.

"Chef art introduced concepts in Long Beach food, at the time, weren't even being discussed. Seafood sustainability, farm to table which are kind of like buzz words now you can see on every menu, but he was doing this well over a decade ago," Addison said.

Gonzalez brought New Mexican cuisine to Long Beach, which is a blend of Native American food and the food from people who have immigrated to New Mexico.

Kline says she hopes to somehow continue her brother's legacy.

"Panxa was one of his three or four babies for what he's created for restaurants and he was very proud of Panxa because it became most successful as well," Kline said.

The memorial outside Panxa Cocina showed just how many people were touched by his kindness.

There will be a celebration of life for Gonzalez Monday May 30 at Panxa Cocina.

His family has created a GoFundMe page to raise money for medical and funeral expenses.

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