9:45 a.m.: Lancaster makes his way up the dusty, creaking stairs to what will become hotel Covell, a five-room boutique hotel above the bar. He’s meeting with designer Sally Breer and his contractor Ruben Franco. Hoping to open in January, Lancaster is engrossed with talk of floors, finials and finishes. His eyes light up as he walks around each room, explaining in detail where the television will go, the kitchenette, which windows will look out onto where, and how a communal outdoor space on the back roof/patio will be one of the best in the city. If all goes well with the '20s, Art Deco, Spanish-style hotel, he’ll add two rooms above the building next door.
11:02 a.m. While descending the stairs of the hotel, Lancaster gets a phone call. One of his chefs has fallen off the wagon, leaving one of his new restaurants without a second in command. And the sinks at El Condor are clogged and need to be cleared.
11:30 a.m. Lancaster gets in the car with his head of operations Sabrina Locatelli to drive to Studio City. He and his partners have already started construction on a new bar called Augustine on Ventura Boulevard near Sunnyslope. He’s hoping to create a Covell-like experience in the Valley, and open sometime in early 2015.
12:57 p.m. It’s time to meet with the managers at El Condor, Lancaster’s Mexican restaurant in Silver Lake. On his way over, he takes a shortcut he’s learned over the last couple of years to avoid traffic, and passes a retirement home.
2:28 p.m. After making a quick stop at Covell to check his email, Lancaster is back in his car on his way to Hollywood. He has a conference call with his chef and a producer for a new TV series that would involve Lancaster and Bezaire helping restaurants improve their food and service. The producer, now on speaker in the car, details how the show would require Lancaster and his chef to be able film multiple days in a row.
3:03 p.m. Lancaster decides to squeeze in an audition for a car commercial at a small building in Hollywood. The Oklahoma native moved to Los Angeles to become an actor and originally started working at restaurants to make a living in between acting gigs. After spending around four years at Cafe Stella, working his way up to manager, he decided to open Covell. But he’s never quite been able to give up acting.
4:31 p.m. He’ll know if he gets the part in a couple of days, but for now, it’s time for happy hour. He's scheduled drinks with his girlfriend and a couple of other friends at El Condor. But Lancaster is too busy for this to be just a social call. It’s Silver Lake movie night and he wants to check in on business.
8 p.m. Lancaster heads over to L&E Oyster to meet a crew from Vice and Kris Yenbamroong, chef at Night + Market. Yenbamroong is filming an episode of “Chef’s Night Out” and has chosen L&E to represent one of the spots in L.A. he enjoys. After the shoot, Lancaster will head back to his home in Los Feliz later in the evening.
“I was listening to a