July 25: Andrew Gruel, Noah Rothbaum, Vina De Liceaga, Connie & Ted’s, Fry Fry Truck, Melissa’s Produce

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel & Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: The Art of American Whiskey by Noah Rothbaum
Segment Three: Wine Journalist Tom Plant and Vina De Liceaga
Segment Four: Matthew De Marte, General Manager, Connie and Ted’s
Segment Five: Big Bite Bacon Fest Preview with Chef Isaiah Rosario
Segment Six: Robert Schueller of Melissa’s World Variety Produce
Segment Seven: Chef Andrew Gruel on Sandwiches
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel on “Trash Fish”

Executive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, and now, LAX, is back as today’s special Guest Host. Irvine opens next week.

Next a provocative preview of Saturday’s ample show. With any luck we will always leave you hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a good thing…

Just as wine is to the French or beer is to the Germans, whiskey – especially bourbon and rye – is an integral part of the history and culture of the United States. The Art of American Whiskey traces the arc of this beloved, renowned spirit – from its earliest days in the Colonial era, through the Civil War, Prohibition, the Great Depression, and up to the current craft-distilling boon. Author and whiskey expert Noah Rothbaum is our guest.

Vina De Liceaga is one of the very limited production, distinguished boutique wineries in the Guadalupe Valley located in Northern Baja California. It was founded in its current location in 1993 by the late Eduardo Liceaga and the tradition continues under the watchful eye of his widow, Myrna. Wine journalist Tom Plant (the founder of WINEormous.com) who has lived in Northern Baja joins us with a profile of visiting Vina De Liceaga.

The casual, seafood centric Connie & Ted’s in West Hollywood has been a crowd-pleasing phenomenon since it opened its doors two years ago. Co-owner Chef Michael Cimarusti (Providence) is one of the most respected seafood chefs in the country. Partner Donato Poto (Providence) has a long reputation as one of the L.A.’s consummate hosts. Partner Craig Nickoloff is an accomplished and veteran restaurateur best known for founding (since sold) the mega successful Claim Jumper restaurants. Craig knows how to feed a crowd and give them every reason to return. Connie & Ted’s opening General Manager, Matthew De Marte is our guest to share a few secrets of their incredible success.

The Big Bite Bacon Fest at The Queen Mary is back for its second year on August 1st & 2nd. Showcasing bacon and craft beer it’s the West Coast’s Largest Bacon Fest! Chef Isaiah Rosario (he’s 16) of the Fry Fry Truck, one of the participating Bacon Fest chefs, joins us to preview some of the outrageous bacon dishes that will be available.

The esteemed Prince of Produce, Robert Schueller of Melissa’s, is back to update us on the fresh and juiciest grapes of Summer. New this year are Jelly Drops Grapes. Returning, and still buzz-worthy, are the coveted Cotton Candy grapes.

Our regular guest host, Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish fame, is a big fan of cravable sandwiches. He’ll give us the profile of the regional favorite, the New Jersey Sloppy Joe and other sandwich intell. Yum…

Chef Andrew Gruel knows a thing or two about fresh fish. One of the goals of the growing sustainability movement in seafood is to encourage fish lovers to try some of the lesser-known selections that are out there for the taking. They are just as tasty and actually typically priced at a better value. Unfortunately they are known as “trash fish.” Don’t let that name fool you. Smelt, sardines, and mackerel can be delicious.

All of this and lots more absolutely incredible deliciousness on Saturday’s show!

Noah RothbaumJust as wine is to the French or beer is to the Germans, whiskey – especially bourbon and rye – is an integral part of the history and culture of the United States. The Art of American Whiskey (A visual history of American whiskey, as told through hundreds of whiskey bottle labels, from early, pre-Prohibition-era days to the present) traces the arc of this beloved, renowned spirit – from its earliest days in the Colonial era, through the Civil War, Prohibition, the Great Depression, and up to the current craft-distilling boon.

Illustrated with 100 full-color modern and historic labels from the most iconic bottles ever made, The Art of American Whiskey is an instant collectible and a worthy gift for any whiskey enthusiast or design lover. Captions, sidebars, profiles and short histories tell the story of the pioneers and places behind the labels. Each chapter features era-appropriate recipes from all-star bartenders and cocktail experts that will tickle any tippler’s fancy.

Author and whiskey expert Noah Rothbaum is our guest. He is the CEO and chief analyst of trend forecasting and spirits consultancy, Liquor Intelligence.

Tom PlantVina De Liceaga is one of the very limited production, distinguished boutique wineries in the Guadalupe Valley located in Northern Baja California. It was founded in its current location in 1993 by the late Eduardo Liceaga and the tradition continues under the watchful eye of his widow, Myrna.

Case production is under 1,000 cases a year. Their premium reserve wine is Etiqueta L which is 80 per cent Syrah and 20 per cent Merlot. It honors the memory of founder Eduardo Liceaga. It’s elegant and structured and pairs well with red meats such as wild boar, rabbit, sirloin, rib eye and venison.

Liceaga also produces award-winning Aqua de Vid (known as Grappa in Italy.)

Wine journalist and photographer Tom Plant (the founder of WINEormous.com) who has lived in Northern Baja joins us with a profile of visiting Vina De Liceaga.

Matthew de MarteThe casual, seafood centric Connie & Ted’s in West Hollywood has been a crowd-pleasing phenomenon since it opened its door two years ago.

Co-owner Chef Michael Cimarusti (Providence) is one of the most respected seafood chefs in the country. Partner Donato Poto (Providence) has a long reputation as one of L.A.’s consummate hosts. He speaks three languages. Partner Craig Nickoloff is a veteran restaurateur best known for founding the hugely successful Claim Jumper restaurants (which he sold at their peak of popularity.) Craig knows how to feed a crowd and give them every reason to return.

Executive Chef Sam Baxter began his career with Chef Michael Cimarusti at Water Grill. Chef Baxter looks to demonstrate that the freshest seafood needs only a light touch and the simplest of preparations to make outstanding food.

Connie & Ted’s opening General Manager, Matthew De Marte is our guest to share a few secrets of their incredible success. He’s also a veteran of Providence.

Big Bite Bacon FestThe Big Bite Bacon Fest at The Queen Mary is back for its second year on August 1st & 2nd. Showcasing bacon and craft beer it’s the West Coast’s Largest Bacon Fest!

Dozens of local restaurants and chefs will offer culinary samples of their own unique spin on the star ingredient – bacon. More than 15 local breweries will be sampling a variety of craft beers to help wash down all the salty bacon-goodness for two pork-filled days of fun.

Guests can indulge in bacon heaven with dishes almost beyond your wildest dreams….bacon filled Twinkies, candied bacon cotton candy, bacon ice pops, bacon waffles, bacon churros, bacon hog pockets and bacon burgers.

The charitable beneficiary of Big Bite is Team Red, White and Blue. Their mission is to enrich the lives of America’s veterans by reintegrating them back into their communities.

Chef Isaiah Rosario (he’s all of 16) of the Fry Fry Truck, one of the participating Bacon Fest chefs, joins us to preview some of the outrageous bacon dishes that will be available.

Robert Schueller of Melissa's World Variety ProduceThe esteemed Price of Produce, Robert Schueller of Melissa’s, is back to update us on the fresh and juiciest grapes of Summer. New this year are Jelly Drops Grapes. Returning are the coveted Cotton Candy grapes.

Jelly Drops Grapes are a hybrid of the popular Thompson Seedless grape and the rich, meaty Concord grape. The result is a plump, juicy, dark purple seedless table grape with a thin skin. Their aromatic, earthy flavor is similar to that of a Concord, but mellowed by the mild sweetness of the Thompson. This variety is a perfect out of hand summer snack fruit or delicious when used as a sweet sauce ingredient for almost any kind of meat or poultry dish.

Cotton Candy Grapes™ are an unusual new hybrid variety developed over eight years by breeding wild grape species in California. As its name implies this grape has a distinctive flavor that does, remarkably, taste very much like the spun sugar confection. This is not a genetically engineered product; but rather a tedious hand-pollination process was employed that resulted over many seasons.

The fruit has an initial burst of Cotton Candy flavor that recedes into a mild, juicy sweetness. Actually, these green to light yellow seedless grapes are low in acid and pleasantly sweet without being overly sugary. A great new healthy snack food for kids or the child in all of us!

Andrew GruelOur regular guest host, Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish fame, is a big fan of truly cravable sandwiches. He’s also a self-described sandwich junkie…Chef Andrew is personally responsible for creating some of his own winners. Think smoked salmon bagel for openers…

Chef Andrew will give us the profile of the regional favorite, the New Jersey Sloppy Joe and other tantalizing sandwich intell.

Yum…

Chef Andrew Gruel knows a thing or two about fresh fish. One of the goals of the growing sustainability movement in seafood is to encourage fish lovers to try some of the lesser-known selections that are out there for the taking.

Earlier in his West Coast career Chef Gruel’s love of the ocean drove him to direct a non-profit project at The Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, CA called Seafood for the Future”. Here he worked with hundreds of chefs, fisherman and like-minded organizations establishing a national culinary awareness for the sustainable seafood movement.

Lesser-known fish species are just as tasty as the seafood stars and typically priced at a better value. Unfortunately they are known as “trash fish.” Don’t let that regrettable name fool you. Smelt, sardines, and mackerel can be delicious.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel & Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: The Art of American Whiskey by Noah Rothbaum
Segment Three: Wine Journalist Tom Plant and Vina De Liceaga
Segment Four: Matthew De Marte, General Manager, Connie and Ted’s
Segment Five: Big Bite Bacon Fest Preview with Chef Isaiah Rosario
Segment Six: Robert Schueller of Melissa’s World Variety Produce
Segment Seven: Chef Andrew Gruel on Sandwiches
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel on “Trash Fish”

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