March 25: Little Cambodia Town, Post and Beam, The Miller’s Table, Regrained Eat Beer, Wine Exchange, Big Kahuna Chocolate Festival, Jonathan Granada

Now a tempting preview of this Saturday’s over-stuffed show. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a pretty good thing…

Long Beach has its own officially designated Little Cambodia Town. It’s known as the Cambodian capital of the United States. Where do you find “real deal” Cambodian food there? Little Cambodia Town’s Honorary Mayor, Rithy Hahn, and Chef “T” Visoth Ouk are our knowledgeable guides.

Brad Johnson’s & Chef Govind Armstrong’s Post & Beam officially opened in early 2012 on the West side of the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza (across the parking lot from the Debbie Allen Dance Academy) in an extensively remodeled, free-standing building with patio which had previously been a Golden Bird Fried Chicken stand. It’s 5 successful years later and we’ll get updates from the principals themselves, Brad & Chef Govind.

One of the most distinctive and personal restaurants in the new wave of Oceanside’s chef-driven establishments is Chef Staci Miller’s The Miller’s Table. It’s very hands-on and intimate with all of 24 seats. Most of the seats are at one, large Community Table. We’ll meet the engaging Chef Staci.

A standout product noted by the “SoCal Restaurant Show” at the recently concluded Natural Products West Expo at the Anaheim Convention Center was Regrained – Eat Beer. Regrained crafts supergrain snacks featuring upcycled brewer’s grain “harvested” from urban craft breweries. CEO & Co-Founder Daniel Kurzrock explains all.

Prosecco is on a lot of restaurant by-the-glass menus these days. It’s a common misnomer that it’s Italian sparkling wine. Actually it comes from difference grapes than Champagne and is created using a different process. Also, all Prosecco is not created equal. To bring clarity to the ongoing discussion our resident wine expert, Kyle Meyer of Wine Exchange in Santa Ana, joins us with the needed 411.

The 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival is set for April 28th & 29th at the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel. “Indulge in the alluring, rich taste of chocolate – in both its sweet and savory forms – while participating in delicious, fun and informative chocolate-themed activities.” Farsheed Bonakdar the President of the Kona Cacao Association (the event’s producer) and Executive Chef Donald Wressell (also an acclaimed chocolatier) of the Guittard Chocolate Company are with us to preview this weekend of rich chocolate indulgence.

After a decadent afternoon of feasting on March 12th on over 1,500 pounds of heritage breed pork raised on family farms, almost 500 guests gathered with glasses full of festive libations at Viceroy Santa Monica, Official Host Venue. From cooks and guests to winemakers and distillers, all were waiting for Cochon555 founder Brady Lowe to crown Los Angeles’ “Prince of Pork,” bestowing not just the title, but a place in the national finale, Grand Cochon, in October in Chicago. L.A.’s newly crowned “Prince of Pork” chef is our guest.

Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel is flying back from Utah on this Saturday morning. He rejoins us on April 1st, and that’s no joke…

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness on this week’s show!

Rithy Hahn, and Chef T Visoth OukLong Beach has its own officially designated Little Cambodia Town. It’s known as the Cambodian capital of the United States. Some 20,000 residents of Long Beach are of Cambodian descent. Long Beach is thought to have the second largest population of Cambodian immigrants outside of Southeast Asia.

The Cambodia Town Culture Festival with lots of food & fun for the whole Family is Sunday, April 2nd from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Cambodian Restaurants we visited (that the locals frequent) in Long Beach include Crystal, Monorom Cambodian Restaurant, Dara Restaurant and Sophy’s – Cambodia Town Food & Music. Some are located just outside of the “official” boundaries of Cambodia Town. All have on-site parking.

Standout dishes to look for range from deep fried whole catfish to salmon salad and lemongrass soup.

Where do you find “real deal” Cambodian food there?

Little Cambodia Town’s Honorary Mayor, Rithy Hahn, and Chef “T” Visoth Ouk are our knowledgeable guides.

Govind Armstrong and Brad JohnsonBrad Johnson’s & Chef Govind Armstrong’s Post & Beam officially opened in early 2012 on the West side of the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza (across the parking lot from the Debbie Allen Dance Academy) in an extensively remodeled, free-standing building with patio which had previously been a Golden Bird Fried Chicken stand.

There is a fairly extensive on-site herb garden on the patio with raised beds. One entire wall of the patio is covered with trailing passion fruit vines. The highly perishable fruit is creatively used there seasonally in salad dressings and desserts.

“No stranger to the dining scene in Los Angeles, Brad Johnson’s and Chef Govind Armstrong’s venture, Post & Beam, is intended to bring warm hospitality, exciting, yet approachable cuisine and good times to the surrounding neighborhoods of the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza. Brad has created memorable places since relocating to California from NYC in 1989. Remember Georgia on Melrose Ave.? That was him, minus some of the gray hair.”

Among Chef Govind’s numerous local credits of note are the fondly remembered Chadwick (Co-Executive Chef) in Beverly Hills and Melrose’s Table 8. He started in the kitchen at Spago at the tender age of 13.

It’s 5 successful years later and we’ll get updates from the principals themselves, Brad & Chef Govind.

Staci MillerOne of the most distinctive and personal restaurants in the new wave of Oceanside’s chef-driven establishments is Chef Staci Miller’s The Miller’s Table. Her beverage goal is to compliment the vibrant Oceanside craft beer scene with her extensive knowledge of fine wine. It’s very hands-on and intimate with all of 24 seats. Most of the seats are at one, large Family Table.

The Miller’s Table is an intimate community experience, with simple, fresh fare, unique wines, craft beers and beverages all brought to a centerpiece of a family table. With all of the fresh produce available in North County, a large portion of Staci Miller’s menu is dedicated to Inspired Vegetables, balanced with Cheese & Charcuterie, and a creative cadre of Sandwiches, all fresh and made in house.

“Of note; our albacore confit tuna and house-made potato chips. With 24 seats, the service is very personal, with no waiters, but rather a culinary team that delivers the food they just prepared. Wine is presented as flights for exploration, with a wine list that changes weekly.”

We’ll meet the passionate Chef Staci.

Daniel KurzrockA standout product noted by the “SoCal Restaurant Show” at the recently concluded Natural Products West Expo at the Anaheim Convention Center was Regrained – Eat Beer. Regrained crafts supergrain snacks featuring upcycled brewer’s grain “harvested” from urban craft breweries. The end result is a whole lot tastier than it perhaps reads…

“When we started homebrewing beer as underage students at UCLA, we certainly did not predict it would lead to this.”

“Here’s what caught us by surprise: with every batch of beer made, we were left with a crazy amount of “used” grain! We understood that the sugar from the grain was somehow being turned into fresh barleypop, but what about the grain? What the heck were we supposed to do with that stuff?? And there was a lot of it!!”

“We didn’t have a compost bin, let alone any farm animals to feed out back of our frathouse homebrewery. So, week after week, vats of oatmeal were tipped into the dumpster. An idea struck. Sure, we didn’t have farm animals, but we had plenty of the next best thing: hungry party animals.”

“So, we set out to bake a sort-of whole grain bread using the leftover grain. We could become the cure for cases of the common drunchies.

After a few months of baking a dozen or so loaves of bread per week between beer making (with some studying in between), a few things became apparent:

  1. People loved our idea. We even developed a contingent of regulars.
  2. Bread was one of many possible applications for reuse of our grain.
  3. Craft beer was continuing to blow up around us. If urban craft breweries shared our sustainability challenge, our idea could be even bigger.

“So, we decided to make a go at a broader business model. ReGrained would not just be a bakery, but more of a go-between the brewing industry and local food systems. It would be both a service provider and a manufacturer. Eventually, we would upcycle all of the grain from every urban brewery in the world!”

“First, we decided, we should start with a product. We liked the bread, but baking it was time consuming, labor intensive, and the shelf-life was short. We needed something more practical.”

“We put our heads (and appetites) together. Jordan’s (Schwartz) crowded apartment kitchen Became our startup’s “garage,” and we developed an evolving recipe of small batch granola bars. Batch after batch we baked until we had something that we believed could have some legs. We believed in our idea, and that if we kept at it, we could turn it into something meaningful.”

“ReGrained has since become a full-time pursuit, and we couldn’t be more excited. We are hard at work every day earnestly growing our bar line, as well as developing other applications for ReGrained grain. We appreciate how far we have been able to take the company from ourcramped UCLA kitchen, but the best is truly yet to come.”

CEO & Co-Founder Daniel Kurzrock explains all.

Kyle Meyer of Wine ExchangeThe delightfully effervescent Prosecco from Italy is on a lot of restaurant by-the-glass menus these days. It’s a common misnomer that it’s Italian sparkling wine. Actually it comes from difference grapes than Champagne and is created using a different, less labor intensive process. Also, all Prosecco is not created equal.

To bring clarity to the ongoing discussion our resident wine expert, Kyle Meyer of Wine Exchange in Santa Ana, joins us with the needed 411.

Also, what sparkling wine and Champagne is now served in by the glass in better restaurants is starting to change. It’s not just presented in a Champagne flute anymore. What’s going on…?

Donald WressellThe 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival is set for April 28th & 29th at the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel. “Indulge in the alluring, rich taste of chocolate – in both its sweet and savory forms – while participating in delicious, fun and informative chocolate-themed activities.”

Farsheed Bonakdar the President of the Kona Cacao Association (the event’s producer) and Executive Chef Donald Wressell (also an acclaimed chocolatier) of the Guittard Chocolate Company are with us to preview this weekend of rich chocolate indulgence with a side of education.

Presented by the Kona Cacao Association (KCA), event proceeds annually benefit a variety of worthy local non-profits.

“Chocolate has an amazing history and it will be fun to share it at this year’s Big Island Chocolate Festival,” says KCA President Farsheed Bonakdar.

The two-day chocolate extravaganza includes a cacao plantation tour at Original Hawaiian Chocolate Factory, a college culinary competition and several public foodie and agriculture-themed seminars. Activities culminate 5-9 p.m. Saturday, April 29 with the indoor-outdoor festival gala—enjoy a host of sweet and savory culinary stations presented by top isle chefs, chocolatiers and confectioners. Fun chocolate activities include a live chocolate sculpture and chocolate body painting.

Culinary participants will depict this year’s historical theme at their booths and be judged on originality.

Chocolate hails from Meso-America where cacao beans were brewed to make a drink or fermented into an alcoholic beverage. Highly valued, the bean was used as currency. The Mayans and Aztecs believed cacao was divine, including it in rituals. Once fashioned into a bar, chocolate became valued in America. During wartime it was included in soldiers’ rations and went to the moon with the Apollo astronauts.

Jonathan GranadaAfter a decadent afternoon of feasting on over 1,500 pounds of heritage breed pork raised on family farms, almost 500 guests gathered with glasses full of everything from Franciacorta and Pinot Noir to Smoked Old-Fashioneds and Angostura Rum Swizzle cocktails at Viceroy Santa Monica, Official Host Venue. From cooks and guests to winemakers and distillers, all were waiting for Cochon555 founder Brady Lowe to crown Los Angeles’ “Prince of Pork,” bestowing not just the title, but a place in the national finale, Grand Cochon, in October in Chicago.

Representing the Berkshire breed of pig raised by Peads & Barnetts, the winner was Chef Jonathan Granada of Otium.

Winning Chef Jonathan’s pig breed from Peads & Barnetts Farm was a Berkshire that yields a brighter pork than most, and features a thick, delicious fat cap. The meat is sweet and creamy with hints of nuttiness, which is a by-product of the finishing process in several areas. These aspects worked in tandem with his six winning menu items, including a Head Cheese; Pork Belly with Feuille de Brick, Stinging Nettle and Caviar; Whipped Lardo with Sea Urchin, Pistachio and Brioche; Pork Shoulder with Artichoke Barigoule and Vin Jaune; a Croquette with Mojo and Potato; and finished with a Cider – Eric Bordelet Poire Granit from France.

A culinary competition featuring 5 chefs cooking 5 whole, heritage breed pigs with innovative flavors and timeless cooking techniques, Cochon555 challenges chefs to use every bit of their accumulated knowledge and inspiration. Each chef is given a 200-220 pound heritage breed pig and tasked to create, prepare and present a “Judge’s Plate” of 6 dishes scored on utilization, global influences, cooking techniques, and overall flavor, among other categories. This year’s experts and celebrity judges included local luminaries Jonathan Gold of Los Angeles Times, Christopher Ford of Beverly Wilshire, Chef Walter Manzke of Republique, Kelly Kang of Viceroy Santa Monica and others.

“The national competition gets more intense and dynamic every year, and the performance of the LA chefs, somms, and barkeeps shows precisely why the city is at the forefront for culinary excellence in this country,” said Cochon555 founder Brady Lowe. “Chef Jonathan’s winning dishes were bold, modern, thoughtful, and full of the kind of flavors that only enhance what heritage breed pigs have to offer. We owe a big thank you to the Viceroy Santa Monica Hotel – the setting was spectacular.”

March 11: Brix at the Shore, Oceanside Sunset Market, Studio at Montage Laguna Beach, Vikram Vij, West Coast Prime Meats, Farm Lot 59

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Rick Reich, Proprietor, W.I.N.O, Brix at The Shore, Long Beach
Segment Three: Kim Heim, Main Street Oceanside, Sunset Market
Segment Four: Executive Chef Craig Strong, Studio, Montage Laguna Beach
Segment Five: Celebrity Chef Vikram Vij, Vij’s, Vancouver, B.C. Part One
Segment Six: Celebrity Chef Vikram Vij, Vij’s, Vancouver, B.C. Part Two
Segment Seven: “The Meatheads” (Terry and Jay) From West Coast Prime Meats
Segment Eight: Farm Lot 59 Benefit at Roe Seafood, Long Beach

Now a scrumptious preview of this Saturday’s over-stuffed show. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a pretty good thing…

When it comes to personable characters on the Long Beach dining scene Rick Reich of Brix at The Shore in Belmont Shore wears the befitting crown. It’s a taste of the Big Apple with its iconic, piled-high pastrami sandwiches, intimate wine bar ambiance and a standout rotating selection of craft beer. And then, there is Rick…

The expansive Thursday evening Sunset Market in Downtown Oceanside is the weekly gathering spot for up to 8,000 locals. Top quality food stands with appealing cuisine from around the globe are one of the primary attractions. Kim Heim from Main Street Oceanside is our informed tour guide.

Known for presenting extraordinary seasonal tasting menus, Executive Chef Craig Strong has introduced a new vegetarian Tasting Menu at Studio at Montage Laguna Beach. The new tasting menu, now offered at the Laguna Beach free-standing, ocean-view restaurant, highlights the restaurant’s 1,000-square-foot raised bed garden with dishes that play on classic French specialties made deliciously vegetarian. We pull Chef Strong out of his amazingly-equipped kitchen for a brief chat.

When it comes to star chefs and high-profile Food TV personalities in Canada the top of the class is surely Vancouver’s Chef Vikram Vij. He has introduced the joy of Indian flavors to tens of thousands of fortunate Canadians since he debuted the original (no-reservations) Vij’s in 1994. We’ll meet the incredible Chef Vikram.

Passover and Easter are on the immediate horizon. For serious home cooks that means a family table of ham and/or lamb for Easter, and lamb for Passover. Our resident meats experts (The heralded “Meatheads” from West Coast Prime Meats, Terry & Jay) have some practical advice and cooking tips for us.

Belmont Shore, Long Beach restaurant Roe Seafood (Owner / Chef Art Gonzalez) will host an “Electric Fundraiser” to benefit Farm Lot 59 on Wednesday, March 22nd from 4 – 7p.m. The food and cocktail-centric event is open to the public and proceeds will fund Farm Lot 59’s efforts to bring much needed electricity to the property.

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness on this week’s show!

Rick ReichWhen it comes to personable characters with their own sense of style on the Long Beach dining scene, Rick Reich of Brix at The Shore in Belmont Shore wears the befitting crown. It’s a taste of the Big Apple with its iconic, piled-high pastrami sandwiches, intimate wine bar ambiance and a standout rotating selection of craft beer. It’s all of 65-seats.

Brix at The Shore offers something the area is lacking: a place that caters to Generation X and Baby Boomers where these forty to sixtysomethings can make their own hangout with music from their era, everything from ‘80s alternative to Sinatra; a rotating wine list with an impressive and thoughtful selection of vintages; a collection of taps that pour craft beer; and an intimate environment that provokes casual conversation among its guests.

“I call Brix at The Shore an adult amusement park,” says owner Rick Reich, who also doubles as the restaurant’s sommelier. “Belmont Shore has plenty of places that appeal to college kids, but what the area was lacking was a hangout for a more established crowd who needed a place to unwind after work, enjoy a good glass of wine or beer, grab a bite to eat, and occasionally break out into song – trust me, it’s happens. We’ve had the entire restaurant singing to Dean Martin on a Saturday night. And that’s what makes Brix so appealing.”

The menu features an array of shareable plates, flatbread sandwiches, salads, deli sandwiches, artisan pizza, burgers and entrees.

We pull W.I.N.O Rick out of the kitchen to tell us all about it.

Kim HeimThe expansive Thursday evening Sunset Market in Downtown Oceanside is the weekly gathering spot for up to 8,000 locals. Eighty-eight top quality food stands featuring appealing ethnic cuisine from around the globe are one of the primary attractions. (There is little duplication of menu items between food stands.)

Think of an intriguing mix of everything from Chicago Polish pierogis to wild caught salmon that is eye-catchingly fire-roasted in front of you on oak planks.

Southern California has attracted people from all over the world and is renowned for its diversity which is reflected in the distinctive international food offerings of the Sunset Market.

Kim Heim from Main Street Oceanside is our informed tour guide.

Craig StrongKnown for presenting extraordinary seasonal tasting menus, Executive Chef Craig Strong has introduced a new Vegetarian Tasting Menu at Studio at Montage Laguna Beach. The new tasting menu, now offered at the Laguna Beach free-standing, ocean-view restaurant, highlights the restaurant’s 1,000-square-foot raised bed garden with dishes that play on classic French specialties made deliciously vegetarian. We pull Chef Strong out of his amazing kitchen for a brief chat.

“This new tasting menu highlights vegetables at the center of the plate with twists on classics, like Pot‘ato’-au-Feu, a take on the traditional Pot-au-Feu beef stew, and Crimson Beet Tartare, my take on a traditional steak tartare, with a golden beet ‘yolk’ in place of the expected raw egg yolk,” explains Chef Strong, who is known for his modern French cuisine with California influences. “I believe that we ‘eat’ with our eyes and noses long before we taste anything, and this menu allows my guests to do just that with nature’s bounty.”

“This is a great menu for vegetarians and non-vegetarians, alike,” commented Chef Strong, whose family garden of zucchini and tomatoes first inspired him to experiment in the kitchen as a child. “Diners who are looking to explore the best seasonal and local produce will find adventure in this menu.”

Studio has been recognized with Five Stars from Forbes Travel Guide, Three Stars from Los Angeles TimesRobb Report as one of “America’s Finest Dining Restaurants,” and Food & Wine Magazine’s “Top 50 Hotel Restaurants.” Studio has also earned the “Best of Award of Excellence” from Wine Spectator and is rated one of Zagat’s “America’s Top Restaurants.”

VIkram VijWhen it comes to star chefs and high-profile Food TV personalities in Canada the top of the class is surely Vancouver’s Chef Vikram Vij. He has introduced the joy of Indian flavors to tens of thousands of fortunate Canadians since he debuted the original (no-reservations) 14-seat Vij’s in 1994. The incredibly popular restaurant has since relocated and expanded to 85-seats plus a bar / lounge area.

In December 1994 Vikram married Meeru, who then joined him at the restaurant. “Our cuisine has stood out from others in that we do not serve what is typically expected from an India restaurant. We prefer to stay away from the tandoor oven since it’s already being used in so many other restaurants. Our philosophy behind the food has always been to keep our spices and cooking techniques Indian – from all regions of India – while using meats, seafood and produce that are locally available. To this effect, we change our menu seasonally.”

We’ll meet the incredible Chef Vikram.

Vikram was born in 1964 in India and grew up in Amritsar and Bombay. His most vivid childhood memories revolve around food and family. He pursued this further by studying Hotel Management in Salzburg, Austria. After his studies, Vikram continued working at various fine dining restaurants in Austria and, in 1989, moved to Canada to work at the Banff Springs Hotel.

Meeru was born in India but moved to Washington, D.C. at a very young age with her parents. Prior to marrying Vikram and moving to Canada, she worked with various organizations in human rights and international development projects.

“Along with the kitchen staff’s dedication and our love of experimenting, Vij’s blossomed quickly and won its first award from Vancouver Magazine for Best Asian restaurant in March 1995. In September 1996, we moved to a larger location and Meeru took over the kitchen and the recipes for the most part. Vikram focused his efforts on the overall running of the restaurant, the presentation of the food and the wine list. In October 2001, Vikram became a certified Sommelier.”

Vikram’s biography, Vij’s: A Chef’s One-Way Ticket to Canada with Indian Spices in His Suitcase publishes on March 21st.

Premium Lamb from West Coast Prime MeatsPassover and Easter are on the immediate horizon. For serious home cooks that means a family table of ham and/or lamb for Easter, and lamb for Passover. Our resident meats experts (The heralded Meatheads from West Coast Prime Meats, Terry & Jay) have some practical advice and cooking tips for us.

What’s all the fuss about lamb from Colorado and New Zealand? We’ll find out.

Sasha KannoBelmont Shore, Long Beach restaurant Roe Seafood (Owner / Chef Art Gonzalez) will host an “Electric Fundraiser” to benefit Farm Lot 59 on Wednesday, March 22nd from 4 – 7p.m. The food and cocktail-centric event is open to the public and proceeds will fund Farm Lot 59’s efforts to bring much needed electricity to the property.

“With recent vandalism and safety and security concerns, our need for electricity is greater than ever,” Farm Lot 59 founder and farmer Sasha Kanno said. “We’re excited to partner with Roe to help raise the funds needed to install power to the property so the farm can continue its mission to service the community and provide our youth with an ‘edible education’.”

“Considering Farm Lot 59 supplies produce to Roe and other restaurants in Long Beach, as well as offers an educational Living Classroom experience on the property for our city’s children, we feel it is important to do our part to help fund its efforts to bring electricity to the farm”, said Chef Art Gonzalez, chef and owner of both Roe Seafood and Panxa Cocina. “We’d love to see all of Long Beach support this one-of-a-kind agricultural treasure nestled in the middle of our bustling city.”

100% of proceeds from Farm Lot 59 signature cocktails and appetizers will go to the farm, as well as 10% of the proceeds from Roe Seafood’s regular menu that evening. Guests are encouraged to call the restaurant in advance at (562) 546-7110 to reserve a table for dinner service.

Founded by Sasha Kanno in 2010, Farm Lot 59/Long Beach Local is an agriculture-based official 501(c)(3) non-profit, organic and biodynamic farm that promotes the direct connection between farmer and consumer and serves as an educational resource for children through its Living Classroom program.

Farm Lot 59 grows vegetables, fruit and flowers without pesticides, herbicides or chemicals. Farm Lot 59 also creates local green jobs and grows healthy fresh food on a historically significant site, with an overall goal to make a difference in the local and global community by combining resources with the city, local partners, and friends.

Farmer Sasha is our guest.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Rick Reich, Proprietor, W.I.N.O, Brix at The Shore, Long Beach
Segment Three: Kim Heim, Main Street Oceanside, Sunset Market
Segment Four: Executive Chef Craig Strong, Studio, Montage Laguna Beach
Segment Five: Celebrity Chef Vikram Vij, Vij’s, Vancouver, B.C. Part One
Segment Six: Celebrity Chef Vikram Vij, Vij’s, Vancouver, B.C. Part Two
Segment Seven: “The Meatheads” (Terry and Jay) From West Coast Prime Meats
Segment Eight: Farm Lot 59 Benefit at Roe Seafood, Long Beach

March 4: Evans Brewing, Melissa’s Produce, Urge Gastropub and Whiskey Bank, Bev Lazo, Brian Huskey

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Anne Marie Panoringan, Food & Libation Journalist
Segment Three: Robert Schueller, Prince of Produce, Melissa’s World Variety Produce Part One
Segment Four: Evan Rapport, Founder & COO, Evans Brewing Co., Irvine
Segment Five: Robert Schueller, Prince of Produce, Melissa’s World Variety Produce Part Two
Segment Six: Grant Tondro, Co-Founder, Urge Gastropub & Whiskey Bar, Oceanside
Segment Seven: Chef Bev Lazo, Fiesta Adobo Catering
Segment Eight: Chef Brian Huskey, Tackle Box, South Coast Plaza’s 50th Birthday

Team USA wins Hold at the 2017 Bocuse D'orWe have been enthusiastically following the incredible “Road to Lyon” for Team USA in the prestigious Bocuse d’Or International Culinary Competition since Chef Mathew Peters (formerly with Thomas Keller’s per se) and his Commis, Harrison Turone, reigned supreme in a fierce cooking competition at The Venetian Resort in Las Vegas in December 2015 to win the honor of representing Team USA in 2017 sat the Bocuse d’Or . For the first time in the 30- year history of the biannual Bocuse d’Or, Team USA took the coveted First Place Gold Statue in late January in Lyon.

You can join in an exclusive, well-deserved salute to our proud Team USA at a reception of specialty cocktails and canapes at Chef Walter Manzke’s (member of the ment’or BKB Culinay Council) Republique in Los Angeles on Monday evening, March 13th from 7 to 9:30 p.m. Both Chefs Mathew and Harrison will be there as well as the prized Gold Statue. Tickets are available right here. See you there!

Now a tempting preview of this Saturday’s lush and abundant show. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s actually a pretty good thing…

Chef Bill Yosses was the Executive Pastry Chef at The White House (7 years) for both Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama. He’s now back in New York with Perfect Pie. More unusually he’s the “Official Pie Maker” for the current Off-Broadway Production of Sweeney Todd. Chef Bill briefly steps away from the deck ovens and is our guest.

Evans Brewing Co. was formed in 2014 when it absorbed the assets of Bayhawk Ales, Inc., Orange County’s oldest operating microbrewery established in 1994 and now publicly traded. Last December Evans Brewing Co. launched The Public House in Fullerton, a full-service restaurant and Tasting Room. The COO and Founder of Evans Brewing Co., Evan Rapport, joins us with a cold one.

What’s the pick of the season in fresh produce right now? We’re talking the very best in fruits and veggies with Robert Schueller, the uncontested Prince of Produce from Melissa’s World Variety Produce and our resident produce authority for a juicy update. We can say for sure that the incredible, tree-ripened Ojai Pixie Tangerines have arrived early and, with any luck, will be with us through May.

Urge Gastropub and Whiskey Bank (including a production microbrewery and hidden Prohibition-era Speakeasy) is new in Oceanside. We’ll savor one of the 250 whiskey options with Co-Owner Grant Tondro of 3LocalBrothers.

Fans of Fox’s “Hell’s Kitchen” will recall the memorable Chef Bev Lazo from Season 12. Chef Bev’s catering company, Fiesta Adobo, cooks up delicious, traditional foods from the Philippines. Another specialty is serving traditional Mexican style street tacos. We’ll meet her.

It’s the 50th Anniversary of Costa Mesa’s celebrated South Coast Plaza. Most of the restaurants there are doing something special to celebrate during the month of March. Bravo’s “Top Chef” alum, Chef Brian Huskey of Tackle Box (on the sand in Costa Mesa), has created the Camarena Tequila chipotle-braised carnitas taco entrée for Wahoo’s Fish Taco in South Coast Plaza. It’s available exclusively at Wahoo’s SCP (2nd level of the Crate and Barrel / Macy’s Home Store Wing) for the month of March. We’ve reeled in Chef Brian to provide the details.

Bill YossesChef Bill Yosses was previously the Executive Pastry Chef at The White House (8 years) for both Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama. He’s now back in New York with Perfect Pie. More unusually he’s the “Official Pie Maker” for the current Off-Broadway Production of Sweeney Todd.

New from Perfect Pie is Oprah’s Valentine’s Day Pie Assortment in a presentation box with ribbon, Wild Blueberry Pie, BBQ Pulled Pork Pie and Pumpkin Pie.

Chef Bill was publicly proclaimed the “Crustmaster” by former President Obama and the “Pastry Man” by former President Bush.

Chef Bill steps away from the deck ovens and is our guest.

Now the Tooting Arts Club is serving up a fresh production of this musical theater classic, Sweeney Todd. This immersive revival has transferred to New York City after a sold-out run in London, where it premiered at Harrington’s Pie and Mash Shop. The Barrow Street Theatre re-creates the pie shop atmosphere, even selling pies on-site. Rest assured, the cook is no relation of Sweeney’s. He is Bill Yosses, a former White House pastry chef whom President Obama dubbed “the Crust Master.”

In keeping with the original Tooting production and the West End transfer, “pie and mash” will be available for purchase by all audience members prior to every performance, served communally in the pie shop where the production is set. An authentic slice of Victorian London, the traditional dish consists of a meat (Chicken) pie, a generous helping of mashed potato and hot parsley sauce. Both meat and vegetarian variations are available for the show.

Evans BrewingEvans Brewing Co. was formed in 2014 when it absorbed the assets of Bayhawk Ales, Inc., Orange County’s oldest operating microbrewery established in 1994 and then became publicly traded.

The production brewery (with new, enhanced equipment) is still based in an unusual space adjacent to McCormick & Schmick’s in Irvine where Bayhawk Ales was originally founded. The brewing process can be observed through floor-to-ceiling windows from the adjacent Pilsner Room at McCormick & Schmicks’s

The new Director of Brewing, Kevin Hammons, has tweaked all the beer recipes. Year-round styles are Chocolatte (Chocolate Porter), The Krhopen (India Pale Ale), Pollen Nation (Honey Blonde), and Oaklore (Brown Ale).

Last December Evans Brewing Co’ launched The Public House in Fullerton, a full-service restaurant and Tasting Room.

The menu of elevated from-scratch pub fare was developed by executive chef, Amanda Platt and features dishes that pair well with the company’s craft ales & lagers. Brunch is served on Weekends from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Selections include the signature Sweet Corn Skillet Hoe Cake, with peppers and onions, applewood smoked bacon and honey butter; Fennel Sausage Flatbread with shaved onions, marinara, shredded mozzarella and grated aged parmesan Reggiano; Fried Chicken Schnitzel Sandwich with arugula, manchego, charred cherry tomatoes and buttermilk ranch on a pretzel bun; and Wild Caught Salmon with a creole sauce. Even the vegetarian option is a thoughtful Grilled Portobello Banh Mi Sandwich served with pickled carrots and daikon, cucumbers, jalapenos, fresh herbs and sriracha aioli.

The COO and Founder of Evans Brewing Co., Evan Rapport, joins us with a cold one.

Robert Schueller of Melissa's World Variety Produce in the AM830 KLAA StudioWhat’s the pick of the season in fresh produce right now? We’re joined by Robert Schueller, the uncontested Prince of Produce from Melissa’s World Variety Produce and our resident produce authority for a juicy update.

We can say for sure that the incredible, tree-ripened Ojai Pixie Tangerines have arrived early and, with any luck, will be with us through May. We’ll also be highlighting (as time allows) Kiwiberries, Red and Green Muscato Grapes and Golden Nugget Tangerines.

Grant TondroUrge Gastropub and Whiskey Bank (including a production microbrewery and hidden Prohibition-era Speakeasy) is new on the scene in Oceanside.

Founded in 2015 Urge Gastropub and Whiskey Bank is one of Oceanside’s creative takes on the Modern American locals’ hangout. Satisfying comfort foods, wines and an extensive beer list (including house-brewed styles) are accompanied with an enormous and eclectic selection of the world’s finest Whisk(e)ys. Urge Oceanside is also the home of Mason Ale Works, a production craft brewery.

We’ll savor one of the 250 whiskey options available with Co-Owner Grant Tondro of 3LocalBrothers.

Bev LazoFans of Fox’s Hell’s Kitchen will recall the memorable Chef Bev Lazo from Season 12. Chef Bev’s busy catering company, Fiesta Adobo, cooks up delicious, traditional foods from the Philippines. Another specialty is serving traditional Mexican style street tacos.

Chef Bev’s Pork Adobo was one of the crowd-pleasing, featured dishes at Golden Rule Charity’s February 20th benefit for Chef Bruno Serato, the non-profit Caterina’s Club and the displaced staff members of The Anaheim White House.

We’ll meet her.

Brian HuskeyIt’s the 50th Anniversary of Costa Mesa’s celebrated South Coast Plaza. Most of the restaurants there are doing something special to celebrate during the month of March.

Bravo’s “Top Chef” Season 11 alum, Chef Brian Huskey of Tackle Box (on the sand in Costa Mesa), has created the Camarena Tequila chipotle-braised carnitas taco entrée for Wahoo’s Fish Taco in South Coast Plaza.

It’s available exclusively for $5.50 at Wahoo’s SCP (2nd level of the Crate and Barrel / Macy’s Home Store Wing) for the month of March, only.

Wahoo’s 30th Anniversary will be next year in 2018!

We’ve reeled in Chef Brian to provide the details.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Anne Marie Panoringan, Food & Libation Journalist
Segment Three: Robert Schueller, Prince of Produce, Melissa’s World Variety Produce Part One
Segment Four: Evan Rapport, Founder & COO, Evans Brewing Co., Irvine
Segment Five: Robert Schueller, Prince of Produce, Melissa’s World Variety Produce Part Two
Segment Six: Grant Tondro, Co-Founder, Urge Gastropub & Whiskey Bar, Oceanside
Segment Seven: Chef Bev Lazo, Fiesta Adobo Catering
Segment Eight: Chef Brian Huskey, Tackle Box, South Coast Plaza’s 50th Birthday

March 4: George Geary, Dino Ferraro, Laurel Tavern, Cochon555, FirkFest, Puesto

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef George Geary, Author of L.A.’s Legendary Restaurants
Segment Three: Executive Chef / Restaurateur Dino Ferraro, Capone’s Cucina, Huntington Beach
Segment Four: Laurel Tavern, Hermosa Beach
Segment Five: Executive Chef Bruce Kalman, Union & Cochon 555 L.A. Competitor
Segment Six: Greg Nagel, Founder, FirkFest Caskaway
Segment Seven: Katy Smith, Executive Creative Chef, Puesto, Irvine’s Los Olivos Marketplace
Segment Eight: Executive Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group

Team USA wins Hold at the 2017 Bocuse D'orWe have been enthusiastically following the incredible “Road to Lyon” for Team USA in the prestigious Bocuse d’Or International Culinary Competition since Chef Mathew Peters (formerly with Thomas Keller’s per se) and his Commis, Harrison Turone, reigned supreme in a fierce cooking competition at The Venetian Resort in Las Vegas in December 2015 to win the honor of representing Team USA in 2017 sat the Bocuse d’Or . For the first time in the 30- year history of the biannual Bocuse d’Or, Team USA took the coveted First Place Gold Statue in late January in Lyon.

You can join in an exclusive, well-deserved salute to our proud Team USA at a reception of specialty cocktails and canapes at Chef Walter Manzke’s (member of the ment’or BKB Culinay Council) Republique in Los Angeles on Monday evening, March 13th from 7 to 9:30 p.m. Both Chefs Mathew and Harrison will be there as well as the prized Gold Statue. Tickets are available right here. See you there!

Now an appetizing preview of this Saturday’s fully-loaded show. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s actually a pretty good thing…

L.A.’s Legendary Restaurants – Celebrating the Famous Places Where Hollywood Ate, Drank, and Played is an illustrated history (with coveted recipes) of dozens of landmark eateries from throughout the City of Angels. From such classics as Musso & Frank and The Brown Derby in the 1920s to the see-and-be-seen crowds at Chasen’s, Romanoffs, and Ciro’s in the mid-20th century to the dawn of California cuisine at Ma Maison and Spago Sunset in the 1970s and ‘80s, L.A.’s Legendary Restaurants celebrates the famous locations where Hollywood ate, drank, and played. Author, chef, culinary instructor and Certified Culinary Professional George Geary is our guest.

Chef Dino Ferraro is affectionately known as the “Godfather of Italian Cuisine” in Huntington Beach with three popular Italian/Mediterranean Restaurants located in this prominent beach community know as Surf City USA. Chef Dino’s flagship is Capone’s Cucina and his other establishments are Black Trumpet Bistro and Mona Lisa Cucina.

Laurel Tavern, an American Gastropub, is new in Hermosa Beach. The menu maker is Chef Roger Hayot who is known to local foodies for his pioneering work as Owner/Chef at Los Angeles’ (now departed) Authentic Café. GM Lee Farrell is the architect of the civilized libation program there including an ambitious selection of rotating craft beers. We’ll meet them.

Cochon555 is a national culinary competition for a cause in support of safe, honest foodways and family farms producing heritage breed pigs. The Los Angeles edition of the event takes place on March 12, at Viceroy Santa Monica. Among the five competing chefs is Bruce Kalman of Pasadena’s Union (Farmhouse Italian Fare.) Chef Bruce is our guest along with Cochon 555’s Communications Director Robert McKeown. 

The 4th Annual FirkFest is back at the Anaheim Packing District on Saturday, March 11th and this year it’s a Tiki theme. It’s unlimited tastes from 50 casks. Talk about wild & unrestrained. Founder Greg Nagel taps the keg for us on this year’s event to benefit the Orange County Brewer’s Guild.

San Diego’s thriving taco hotspot, Puesto, has expanded to Orange County with a new restaurant in Irvine’s Los Olivos Marketplace. The concept is a fresh, contemporary take on authentic Mexican fare in a relaxed environment. Executive Creative Chef Katy Smith is our guest.

Our Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel, is a recognized expert on seafood. Poke outlets are seemingly popping up on every corner and fresh sushi is now available at your neighborhood convenience store. How do you know your poke and sushi is really fresh ? Raw fish needs to be handled, and stored, with care. Chef Andrew to the rescue with what you should know to be better informed!

George GearyL.A.’s Legendary Restaurants – Celebrating the Famous Places Where Hollywood Ate, Drank, and Played is an illustrated history (with coveted recipes) of dozens of landmark eateries from throughout the City of Angels. From such classics as Musso & Frank and The Brown Derby in the 1920s to the see-and-be-seen crowds at Chasen’s, Romanoffs, and Ciro’s in the mid-20th century to the dawn of California cuisine at Ma Maison and Spago Sunset in the 1970s and ‘80s, L.A.’s Legendary Restaurants celebrates the famous locations where Hollywood ate, drank, and played.

Author George Geary leads you into the glamorous restaurants inhabited by the stars through a lively narrative filled with colorful anecdotes and illustrated with vintage photographs, historic menus, and timeless ephemera. Over 100 iconic recipes for entrees, appetizers, desserts, and vintage drinks are included, and all are updated for today’s cook and kitchen.

While many people have heard the story of Elizabeth Taylor requesting that Chasen’s famous chili be flown to her on the set of Cleopatra in Rome, L.A.’s Legendary Restaurants offers facts and trivia that aren’t as well known to the general public, such as Bob Hope’s favorite place to enjoy a hot fudge sundae after the Academy Awards, the restaurant where part of a table was sawed off to accommodate a pregnant Lana Turner, and the pharmacy where composer Harold Arlen wrote “Over the Rainbow” for The Wizard of Oz.

The glamour of the golden age of drive-ins, drugstores, nightclubs, and hotels are also honored. What book on L.A. restaurants would be complete without tales of ice cream sundaes at C.C. Brown’s, cafeteria-style meals at Clifton’s, a late-night breakfast at Ben Frank’s, or a mai tai at Don the Beachcomber?

Author, chef and Certified Culinary Professional George Geary is our guest.

Dino FerraroChef Dino Ferraro is affectionately known as the “Godfather of Italian Cuisine” in Huntington Beach with three popular Italian/Mediterranean Restaurants located in this prominent beach community. Chef Dino’s flagship is Capone’s Cucina and his other establishments are Black Trumpet Bistro and Mona Lisa Cucina.

Capone’s Pasta and Pizza opened in Westminster in 1997. It was at this location that Dino expanded his repertoire and added specials to the standard menu. Customers were hooked on Dino’s ability to transform everyday ingredients into culinary works of art and became regulars.

He sold Capone’s Pasta and Pizza in 2000 and moved to Huntington Beach where he opened Capone’s Cucina with a goal of creating a more gourmet dining experience. In 2002, Dino hired friend and fellow chef, Francois Lieutaud to create a unique paring of French and Italian cuisine. The combination made for an old world European feel and customers loved the larger selection of dishes. Capone’s remodeled and expanded into the space next door late last year.

Dino and Francois rejoined again and started Mona Lisa Cucina with a large variety of gourmet pasta’s and pizza’s to serve the Huntington Beach community. From their early experiments with simple, basic foods grew an appreciation for the sensuality of texture, presentation and fragrance.

The newest addition to Chef Dino’s family of restaurants is The Black Trumpet. This establishment specializes in Mediterranean tapas, small plates that bring the guest the flavors of Italy, France, Greece and Morocco.

Roger HayotLaurel Tavern, an American Gastropub, is new in Hermosa Beach. The menu maker is Chef Roger Hayot who is known to local foodies for his pioneering work as Owner/Chef at Los Angeles’ (now departed) Authentic Café. GM Lee Farrell is the architect of the civilized libation program there including an ambitious selection of craft beers.

It’s a youthful vibe with moderate prices. You order at The Bar and a friendly server brings you your libations and food.

Weekend Brunch includes specialties like Lemon Ricotta Stuffed French Toast and Mohawk Smoked Bacon.

Dinner specialties are the Sausage Board with bratwurst, apple & smoked gouda sausage, andouille sausage and accompaniments, and Smoked Chicken Salad with mahon cheese, marcona almonds, piquillio peppers, mushrooms, chickpeas and pickled red onion.

The ample bar program includes an international “Build Your Own Mule” option.

We’ll meet both Chef Roger and GM Lee.

Bruce Kalman on Union PasadenaCochon555 is a national culinary competition for a cause in support of safe, honest foodways and family farms producing heritage breed pigs. The Los Angeles edition of the event takes place on March 12, at Viceroy Santa Monica. Among the five competing local chefs is Bruce Kalman of Pasadena’s Union (Farmhouse Italian Fare.)

At the center of Cochon555 is a cook-off featuring five chefs cooking five whole, heritage breed pigs with innovative techniques and bold flavor profiles. One week before the event, the five competing chefs receive a 200-pound heritage breed pig from a local farmer. They are each tasked to create and present a “Judge’s Plate” of 6 dishes scored on categories such as utilization; cooking techniques; and overall flavor. The winner from each city is crowned the “Prince of Porc,” and given a place at Cochon’s national championship, Grand Cochon, to be held in Chicago during October 2017. This year, Chef Larry Monaco of Viceroy Santa Monica’s CAST Restaurant will lead the judging.

Communal feasting is an integral part of the Cochon555 culinary fabric. Beyond the 30 chef-competitor dishes – all told, some 1,500-plus pounds of heritage pork from family farms – guests can sample beef tartare with the wines of Antica Napa Valley; farmhouse cheeses; a pop-up bakery featuring La Brea; a Reserve Salami Snack Bar from Creminelli and Divina paired with wines from Nielson; a ramen noodle soup bar paired with the racy wines from Wines of Germany; organic pâté offerings from Les Trois Petit Cochons; a Luxury Butter Bar featuring Sabatino truffle butter, foie gras, and more; wines from Twomey and Silver Oak Cellars paired with bites prepared by Chef Dominic Orsini and an innovative take on classic pastry presented by Perfect Puree of Napa Valley.

Tickets for general admission start at $125; VIP tickets (early admission + exclusive sommelier and cocktail competition tastings) are $200; and BESPOKE tickets $400 (includes a multi-course charity dinner prepared by 3 celebrity chefs on Saturday night; super early admission + exclusive private tasting and tour of Somm-Selected wines and the Barkeep competition by a Cochon555 director on Sunday; and a donation to Piggy Bank charity). You can purchase tickets right here.

Chef Bruce Kalman is our guest along with Cochon 555’s Communications Director, Robert McKeown. 

Greg NagelThe 4th Annual FirkFest is back at the Anaheim Packing District on Saturday, March 11th and this year it’s a Tiki theme. It’s unlimited tastes from 50 casks. Talk about wild & unrestrained. It’s beers, food and all-Tiki-themed décor.

“Looking at the previous three Firkfest events, I saw a common denominator: tropical-style beers seemed to stand out. As a huge cocktail nerd that loves Tiki culture, it’s time for the area’s craft brewers to come together, throw on some grass skirts, and make something truly unique,” says founder, organizer, and local beer writer Greg Nagel, @OCBeerBlog.

Food vendors include Tiki-style slider restaurant Hatch and the Iron Press bringing pulled-pork fries and sliders, Adya: Fresh Indian Flavors is bringing tropical Kebab and nacho-like pineapple chaat, and Salt & Ash from P-town is coming up with a pork Musubi-like dish (tbd).

Founder Greg Nagel taps the keg for us on this year’s event to benefit the Orange County Brewer’s Guild.

Katy SmithSan Diego’s thriving taco hotspot, Puesto, has expanded to Orange County with a new restaurant in Irvine’s Los Olivos Marketplace. The concept is a fresh, contemporary take on authentic Mexican fare in a relaxed environment.

Puesto’s menu encourages guests to mix and match from an offering of specialty tacos such as the Filet Mignon Taco with crispy melted cheese, avocado & spicy pistachio serrano salsaChicken Al Pastor Taco with crispy melted cheese, hibiscus & chipotle tinga, avocado & piña habanero pico, vegetarian options such as the Zucchini & Cactus Taco with crispy melted cheese, zucchini, corn, tomato, cactus, avocado & cilantro-tomatillo, and sustainable seafood options like the Tamarindo Shrimp Tacos with crispy tamarindo-chile shrimp nestled in guacamole & cilantro. All of Puesto’s salsas are made from scratch using local ingredients, with tortillas made in-house using organic, non-GMO, blue corn masa sourced from local purveyor, Kernel of Truth.

Puesto’s extensive beverage program offers nearly 50 kinds of tequila and mezcal, 12 local and Mexican beers on draft, six wines on tap and specialty cocktails made with freshly squeezed juices and house-made liqueurs and sodas. Popular libations include the Puesto Perfect Margarita with blue agave reposado tequila, lime & agave nectarEl Mezcalito with Vida mezcal, Guanabana, tamarindo, lime & charred orange and La Rosita with house-made strawberry-cilantro infused vodka, lemon & cane sugar.

Puesto’s Executive Creative Chef Katy Smith is our guest.

Andrew and William GruelOur Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel, is a recognized expert on seafood. Poke outlets are seemingly popping up on every corner and fresh sushi is now available at your neighborhood convenience store.

How do you know if your poke and sushi are really fresh? Raw fish needs to be handled, and stored, with care. Chef Andrew to the rescue with what you should know to be better informed!

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef George Geary, Author of L.A.’s Legendary Restaurants
Segment Three: Executive Chef / Restaurateur Dino Ferraro, Capone’s Cucina, Huntington Beach
Segment Four: Laurel Tavern, Hermosa Beach
Segment Five: Executive Chef Bruce Kalman, Union & Cochon 555 L.A. Competitor
Segment Six: Greg Nagel, Founder, FirkFest Caskaway
Segment Seven: Katy Smith, Executive Creative Chef, Puesto, Irvine’s Los Olivos Marketplace
Segment Eight: Executive Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group

February 25: Zov Karamardian, Eric Klein, Fresh Brothers, California Fish Grill, Andrew Sutton, Wine Exchange

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Zov Karamardian, Zov’s Bistro, Tustin
Segment Three: Executive Chef Eric Klein, Vice President, Culinary, Wolfgang Puck Catering
Segment Four: Adam and Chef Scott Goldberg, Fresh Brothers – Pizza, Salad and Wings Part One
Segment Five: Adam and Chef Scott Goldberg, Fresh Brothers – Pizza, Salad and Wings Part Two
Segment Six: Chef Louie Jocson, Vice President, Food & Beverage, California Fish Grill
Segment Seven: Executive Chef Andrew Sutton, Napa Rose, Preview of OC Chef’s Table 2017
Segment Eight: The Basics of Appreciating the Paso Robles AVA, Kyle Meyer, The Wine Exchange

Now a tempting preview of this Saturday’s over-stuffed show. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s actually a pretty good thing…

Thirty years ago Chef Zov Karamardian (now known for her unique Middle Eastern-fusion cuisine) opened her modest Bistro in the Enderle Center in Tustin. Today Zov’s is the largest food tenant in the Enderle Center with additional busy locations in Anaheim, Irvine, Newport Coast and John Wayne Orange County Airport. We’ll celebrate with her…

For the 23rd consecutive year the celebrity chef to the stars Wolfgang Puck will set the stage for the Oscars’ Governors Ball menu pairing classic Hollywood glamour with culinary whimsy. Working alongside Chef Puck is Wolfgang Puck Catering’s Executive Chef and Vice President, Culinary, Eric Klein (formerly Executive Chef & Partner of Spago Las Vegas. We’ll have an exclusive kitchen chat with Chef Eric.

Here’s one for you. There really are two brothers (Chef Scott and Adam Goldberg) at Fresh Brothers Pizza with 19 locations in Los Angeles, Orange County and San Diego. It’s really all about “Fresh” as even the dough is made fresh daily. We’ll meet the Brothers Goldberg.

We all know the experts suggest we get more heart-healthy seafood into our regular diet. How do you dine out and find quality seafood at affordable prices? That’s been the goal of California Fish Grill since the first location opened in 1998. Chef Louie Jocson, Vice President, Food & Beverage for California Fish Grill joins us with all the details.

Illumination Foundation (IF) will host the 2nd Annual OC Chef’s Table 2017 on Sunday, March 12, 2017, at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa, to raise funds for the construction of a second emergency home for homeless families with children. Host Chef Andrew Sutton of Napa Rose at Disney’s Grand Californian is our guest with a preview.

If you’re a wine enthusiast then the Paso Robles AVA is surely on your mind. It’s located in the northern reaches of California’s San Luis Obispo County. Actually different districts there have distinct characteristics. One of our resident wine experts, Kyle Meyer of Santa Ana’s Wine Exchange, joins us with a basic guide to appreciating this much talked about area.

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

Zov Karamardian or Zov's in TustinThirty years ago Chef Zov Karamardian (now known for her unique Middle Eastern-fusion cuisine) opened her modest Bistro in 1,200 square feet in the Enderle Center in Tustin. Today Zov’s is the largest food tenant in the Enderle Center (12,000 square feet) with additional busy locations in Anaheim, Irvine, Newport Coast and John Wayne Orange County Airport. We’ll celebrate with her…

Zov is celebrating by offering popular menu items at throwback prices.

During the last week of each month Zov’s locations in Anaheim, Irvine, Newport Coast and Tustin will feature one dish at its original menu price.

“These flavors represent the foundation of my cooking,” Chef Zov said. “Over the years some of these dishes may have come and gone, but seemingly they have not been forgotten. We’re excited to share these special menu items in celebration with our longtime guests.”

February 26th to March 4th is Golden Lentil Soup.

Inspired by (and later a friend to) Julia Child, Zov has authored 2 popular cookbooks while growing her restaurant group to locations in Anaheim, Irvine, Newport Coast, Tustin and John Wayne Airport.

Zov’s was awarded the 2015 Small Business Award by the State of California, and Zov had the honor of cooking at the James Beard Foundation in Manhattan for the third time in late 2015. She was honored as the 2016 Golden Foodies Chef of the Year by the Orange County Restaurant Association in late 2016.

Eric Klein of Wolfgang Puck CateringFor the 23rd consecutive year the celebrity chef to the stars Wolfgang Puck will set the stage for the Oscars’ Governors Ball menu pairing classic Hollywood glamour with culinary whimsy. It’s for 1,500 VIP guests including Oscar winners and Nominees in the Ray Dolby Ballroom on the top level of the Hollywood & Highland Center. It starts immediately followiing the Oscar telecast.

Working alongside Chef Puck is Wolfgang Puck Catering’s Executive Chef and Vice President, Culinary, Eric Klein (formerly Executive Chef & Partner of Spago Las Vegas.

The culinary team creates more than 50 imaginative dishes from one-bite hors d’oeuvres to small-plate entrees that will be passed throughout the evening.

Some 32,000 plates of food will be enjoyed by the guests served by a team of 10 maitre d’ staff, 950 service and support staff and 300 culinary staff.

On the order list for the Governors Ball is 350 pounds of Atlantic Bigeye tuna, 10 kilos of American, farm-raised caviar, 250 Maine lobsters, and 800 stone crab claws.

The guests will toast with 1,400 bottles of Piper-Heidsieck (more than 12,000 glasses) and 2,200 bottles of fine wine from Francis Ford Coppola Winery.

We’ll have an exclusive kitchen chat with Chef Eric.

Adam and Scott GoldbergHere’s a good one for you. There really are two brothers (Chef Scott and Adam Goldberg) at Fresh Brothers Pizza with 19 locations in Los Angeles, Orange County and San Diego. It’s really all about “Fresh” as even the dough is made fresh daily.

If you’re perhaps unfamiliar with Fresh Brothers, let us put it simply – a fresh, healthy California twist on Chicago-style pizza. The first Fresh Brothers location opened in 2008 and they’ve been dedicated to serving pizza, wings and salads packed with quality ingredients ever since.

“The word fresh is key to the Fresh Brothers brand in more ways than one – and it’s what makes them different from your average pizza point. With Chicago-style family recipes in hand, Adam and Debbie Goldberg successfully transformed menu items passed down by Scott Goldberg, with a fresh and healthy California twist.”

“They’re also known as an ideal place to bring the whole family, and were even recently nominated for a Red Tricycle Award for Best Places to Host a Kids Birthday Party. There’s no question this family-style business has kept their roots, but have in time transitioned into a successful family-friendly restaurant enterprise.”

“Fresh Brothers’ sauce is packed with 100% fresh tomatoes, no concentrate. Their mozzarella is all-natural with no fillers, additives or preservatives. The Fresh Kids Special, as featured on The Doctors television show, has a mix of five different finely-ground veggies blended into the pizza sauce. Plus, nothing on the menu is ever fried – their tasty wings, bites, and tenders, and even the Fresh Fries, are all baked.”

“For those following special diets, Fresh Brothers even offers a gluten-free pizza and other gluten-free items, as well as vegan options. Aside from their health-conscious efforts, Fresh Brothers offers a wide variety of delicious pizzas, salads and more – a little something for everyone!”

We’ll meet the Brothers Goldberg.

“For those following special diets, Fresh Brothers even offers a gluten-free pizza and other gluten-free items, as well as vegan options. Aside from their health-conscious efforts, Fresh Brothers offers a wide variety of delicious pizzas, salads and more – a little something for everyone!”

“Adam’s dream of owning a pizza shop has officially turned into a successful venture. Fresh Brothers has expanded over the last 8 years and continues to give back to their community. The company has given thousands in donations to support multiple local SoCal schools and non-profits. In 2016 alone, Fresh Brothers raised almost $30,000 for schools in Irvine, Newport Beach, Costa Mesa and Laguna Niguel. Aside from the delicious ingredients, hospitality and healthy choices, Fresh Brothers has proven that the most important aspect of their business is giving back to their community.”

Louie JocsonWe all know the experts suggest we get more heart-healthy seafood into our regular diet. How do you dine out and find quality seafood at affordable prices? Answering that need has been the Ambitious goal of California Fish Grill since the first location opened in 1998.

“Since 1998, California Fish Grill has been serving quality seafood at affordable prices to our loyal customers and their families. The vision for our restaurant came more from a simple question than the thought of a successful business enterprise. It is widely known that seafood is rich in nutrients and healthy omega-3 oils. The Surgeon General recommends that Americans eat 2-3 servings of seafood per week to maintain a healthy lifestyle.”

“Why is it so hard to find a place that serves great seafood at prices someone could afford to eat 2-3 times per week?” That is where the concept of California Fish Grill was born.”

“Our menu consists of grilled and fried seafood to satisfy anyone’s palate. We also offer wonderful crisp, fresh salads topped with your choice of grilled fish or seafood. One of our most popular offerings is fish tacos. We offer the widest variety of fish tacos served anywhere. From grilled Mahi-Mahi, Tuna, Salmon and Shrimp to our fried selections of Arctic White Fish and Shrimp.”

Veteran Chef Louie Jocson, Vice President, Food & Beverage for California Fish Grill joins us with all the details.

Andrew Sutton of Disney's Grand Californian Resort and SpaIllumination Foundation (IF) will host the 2nd Annual OC Chef’s Table 2017 on Sunday, March 12, 2017, at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa, to raise funds for the construction of a second emergency home for homeless families with children.

OC Chef’s Table is one of the county’s most exclusive charitable culinary events where OC’s top chefs come together to create a delectable five-course meal prepared tableside at tables decorated to reflect the personality and brand of each participating restaurant. Every restaurant and chef participating has been personally chosen to host a table at the gala due to their earned accolades for their impressive culinary skills or innovations.

“Nearly 1 in 6 children face homelessness in OC. There are too many families with children that struggle to secure a roof over their heads every night.  It shouldn’t be like this. Children should have the right to a happy and stable childhood. We can’t thank these extraordinary chefs enough for accepting to donate their time, talent and culinary knowledge to help us build a second emergency house in Orange County. This event is going to be an amazing experience for our guests, a creative challenge for the chefs and eye-opening for everybody. With every emergency house we build we start rebuilding the lives of 100 suffering families per year. The more money we raise, the more houses and services we offer and that means less people on our county’s streets. I want to thank all the chefs, restaurants, guests and sponsors for joining us in our mission to break the cycle of homelessness,” said Paul Leon, Illumination Foundation CEO and President.

Host Chef Andrew Sutton of Napa Rose at Disney’s Grand Californian is our guest with a preview. Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish Restaurant Group will also be cooking for an OC Chef’s Table.

Kyle Meyer of Wine ExchangeIf you’re a wine enthusiast then the Paso Robles AVA is surely on your mind. It’s located in the northern reaches of California’s San Luis Obispo County. Actually different districts there have distinct characteristics.

One of our resident wine experts, Kyle Meyer of Santa Ana’s Wine Exchange, joins us with a basic guide to appreciating the much talked about area.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Zov Karamardian, Zov’s Bistro, Tustin
Segment Three: Executive Chef Eric Klein, Vice President, Culinary, Wolfgang Puck Catering
Segment Four: Adam and Chef Scott Goldberg, Fresh Brothers – Pizza, Salad and Wings Part One
Segment Five: Adam and Chef Scott Goldberg, Fresh Brothers – Pizza, Salad and Wings Part Two
Segment Six: Chef Louie Jocson, Vice President, Food & Beverage, California Fish Grill
Segment Seven: Executive Chef Andrew Sutton, Napa Rose, Preview of OC Chef’s Table 2017
Segment Eight: The Basics of Appreciating the Paso Robles AVA, Kyle Meyer, The Wine Exchange

February 18: Anaheim White House, Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks, 4th & Olive, Mathew Peters and Young Yun

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Andy Harris & Chef Andrew Gruel
Segment Two: Judy Walker, Golden Rule Charity – Benefit for Chef Bruno Serato, Anaheim White House, Anaheim
Segment Three: Glen Hutton, Co-Owner, Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks, Richmond, B.C.
Segment Four: Dan Tapia, Proprietor, 4th and Olive Restaurant, Long Beach
Segment Five: James Beard Foundation Awards – Announcement of Restaurant and Chef Semifinalists
Segment Six: Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group
Segment Seven: Chef Mathew Peters, Gold Medalist, Team USA, 2017 Bocuse d’Or International Culinary Competition
Segment Eight: Young Yun, Executive Director, ment’or BKB Foundation

Now an enticing preview of this Saturday’s  abundant show with Co-Hosts Andy Harris and Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s actually a pretty good thing…

Chef Bruno Serato of the Anaheim White House is passionate about his long-time efforts to feed hungry kids in need daily with nutritious food prepared in his own kitchens. His restaurant was recently devastated by a horrific fire and remains closed. Orange County chefs & restaurateurs are generously rallying to support Bruno’s charity, Caterina’s Club, and his employees with a benefit on Monday evening, February 20th at Highway 39 Event Center in Anaheim. Organizer Judy Walker of Golden Rule Charity joins us with the specifics.

You have to appreciate a young, upstart craft brewery whose slogan is “Keeping Beer Weird.” The talk among Richmond, B.C.’s craft beer enthusiasts is Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks. We’ll tap a keg of their popular “The Last Strawberry” (a Belgian wit brewed with local strawberries) with co-founder Glen Hutton, a Richmond, B.C. local.

The newly opened 4th and Olive in the East Village of Long Beach is a traditional Franco-German restaurant and beer garden serving Alsatian style food. Under the culinary direction of Chef Alex McGroarty, the restaurant features housemade dishes such as sausages, braised meats, pretzels, sauerkraut and other comfort foods of the region, plus unique European beers and wines. Proprietor Dan Tapia is our guest.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel is known to be pretty handy in the kitchen. Today it’s “Mastering Kitchen Science 101” sharing little known tips and tricks to use in the home kitchen.

If you’re a wine enthusiast then the Paso Robles AVA is surely on your mind. It’s located in the northern reaches of California’s San Luis Obispo County. Actually different districts there have distinct characteristics. One of our resident wine experts, Kyle Meyer of Santa Ana’s Wine Exchange, joins us with a basic guide to appreciating this much talked about area.

We’ve been enthusiastically following Team USA’s progress (backed by the ment’or BKB Foundation) in the bi-annual Bocuse d’Or International Culinary Competition for the last five years.  Late last month Team USA achieved the impossible – Gold in Lyon. Team USA’s Bocuse d’Or champion Chef Mathew Peters and Team USA’s backer, ment’or BKB Foundation (represented by Executive Director Young Yun), join us to savor this tremendous achievement for the culinary arts in the United States.

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

Bruno SeratoChef Bruno Serato of the Anaheim White House is passionate about his long-time efforts to feed hungry kids in need daily with nutritious food prepared in his own kitchens. His restaurant was recently devastated by a horrific fire and remains closed. It’s going to take time and over $1 million to restore. Insurance will not cover it all.

Orange County chefs & restaurateurs are generously rallying to support Bruno’s charity, Caterina’s Club, and his employees with a benefit on Monday evening, February 20th at Highway 39 Event Center in Anaheim.

VIP is from 5 to 8:00 p.m. with wine and beer included is a $75 donation.

General Admission is from 6 to 8:00 p.m. and is a $50 donation.

“The Anaheim White House restaurant has been severely damaged in a fire and will close indefinitely. The 1909 Colonial-style mansion was converted into a restaurant now owned by Chef Bruno Serato, who feeds pasta each night to 2,000 at-risk, disadvantaged children from the restaurant’s kitchen. He has done so for more than a decade.”

“Bruno is an Italian immigrant who came to the U.S. with $50 in his pocket and through hard work saved the money to open his restaurant 30 years ago. Bruno is known worldwide for feeding the children, finding housing for their families and helping at-risk youth land jobs in the hospitality field. He even mortgaged his own home during the recession to keep his charity work going.”

Organizer Judy Walker of Golden Rule Charity joins us with the specifics.

Glen HuttonYou have to appreciate a young, upstart craft brewery whose slogan is “Keeping Beer Weird.” The talk of Richmond, B.C.’s craft beer enthusiasts is Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks.

“We try to invent styles, and nothing is done true to style”

The friendly Tasting Room at The Brewery also offers a variety of satisfying local street food specialties including samosas (beef, chicken and vegetable) and a cheese & onion pie.

We’ll tap a keg of their popular “The Last Strawberry” (a Belgian wit brewed with local strawberries) with co-founder Glen Hutton, a Richmond, B.C. local.

Dan Tapia and barman John Putman of 4th an d Olive in Long BeachThe newly opened 4th and Olive in the East Village of Long Beach is a traditional Franco-German restaurant and beer garden serving Alsatian style food. Under the culinary direction of Chef Alex McGroarty, the restaurant features housemade dishes such as sausages, braised meats, pretzels, sauerkraut and other comfort foods of the region, plus unique European beers and wines.

Unique to the restaurant industry, disabled veterans were actively recruited to staff 4th and Olive, resulting in a 50% make up of current employees. Tapia, a proud Navy veteran and recovering quadriplegic himself who was injured during a stint in the Navy and currently uses a cane, is committed to creating jobs for other disabled vets that are having difficulty finding employment because of their physical challenges. The layout of the restaurant and kitchen were designed with these challenges in mind.

“The 4th and Olive team is excited to serve authentic Alsatian style food to food lovers in Long Beach,” Tapia said. “Along with our great menu and friendly service, my personal goal is to bring attention to the challenges other disabled vets face when they are willing and capable of doing just as good a job as an able-bodied person.”

Weekend Brunch is served Saturday and Sunday, 10am – 3pm. The restaurant is open for dinner 4:30 – 10pm Monday through Thursday and 4:30 – 11pm Friday and Saturday.

Proprietor Dan Tapia is our guest.

Andrew and William GruelOur own Chef Andrew Gruel is thought to be pretty handy in the kitchen. Today it’s “Mastering Kitchen Science 101” sharing little known tips and tricks to use in the home kitchen.

Did you know you can use baking soda to tenderize meat?

We’ve been enthusiastically following Team USA’s progress (backed by the ment’or BKB Foundation) in the bi-annual Bocuse d’Or International Culinary Competition for the last five years.  Late last month Team USA achieved the impossible – Gold in Lyon.

Mathew Peters“On January 25, 2017, Team USA 2017 was the first American team to win Gold at the Bocuse d’Or!  This is an extraordinary accomplishment and words cannot adequately express how proud we are of Chef Mathew Peters, Commis Harrison Turone and Head Coach Philip Tessier. This historic win would not have been possible without our designer, Martin Kastner, and his team from Crucial Detail. We would also like to extend our congratulations to all of the teams who competed this year – it was an incredible display of culinary excellence.”

Team USA’s Bocuse d’Or world champion, Chef Mathew Peters,  joins us to savor this tremendous achievement for the culinary arts in the United States.

Young Yun“We knew the world was watching ever since Chef Philip Tessier made the podium for the first time in 2015, and expectations were very high for Team USA this year. Nine years ago, our Founding Chefs Boulud, Keller and Bocuse, made a promise to Monsieur Paul Bocuse that we would win Gold and we are so proud of this team for realizing his dream. They carried quite a weight on their shoulders and carried it with exemplary grace, strength, and leadership.” – Young Yun

Team USA’s primary backer and inspiration, ment’or BKB Foundation (represented by Executive Director Young Yun), joins us to savor this tremendous achievement for the culinary arts in the United States.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Andy Harris & Chef Andrew Gruel
Segment Two: Judy Walker, Golden Rule Charity – Benefit for Chef Bruno Serato, Anaheim White House, Anaheim
Segment Three: Glen Hutton, Co-Owner, Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks, Richmond, B.C.
Segment Four: Dan Tapia, Proprietor, 4th and Olive Restaurant, Long Beach
Segment Five: James Beard Foundation Awards – Announcement of Restaurant and Chef Semifinalists
Segment Six: Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group
Segment Seven: Chef Mathew Peters, Gold Medalist, Team USA, 2017 Bocuse d’Or International Culinary Competition
Segment Eight: Young Yun, Executive Director, ment’or BKB Foundation

February 11: Live from the Pechanga Chocolate Decadence and Wine Festival

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Andy Harris
Segment Two: Jean-Jacques Granet, Executive Pastry Chef, Pechanga Resort & Casino
Segment Three: Gus Vizgirda, Winemaker, Wilson Creek Winery
Segment Four: Alex Pena, Manager, Great Oak Steakhouse, Pechanga Resort & Casino, Temecula
Segment Five: Sean Macready, Social Media / Digital Manager, Pechanga Resort & Casino
Segment Six: Chef Marlene Moore, Temptations Food Walk, Pechanga Resort & Casino
Segment Seven: Melba and Steve Artea, Crown City Toffee
Segment Eight: Food, Wine & Travel Journalists, Susan & Todd Montgomerys

9th annual Pechanga Chocolate Decadence and Wine FestivalWe’re live on Saturday from the 9th Annual Pechanga Wine Festival and Chocolate Decadence. It’s a benefit for Habitat for Humanity Inland Valley. A few hundred of the finest vintages from Napa Valley, Sonoma County, Temecula, France, Italy, Spain, Argentina, Chile, Australia, New Zealand and beyond are available for the tasting. Also on the menu are a variety of impressive tastes from the award-winning chefs of Pechanga Resort & Casino.

Now an enticing preview of this Saturday’s totally decadent show with Co-Host Andy Harris. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s actually a pretty good thing…

Friday, February 10th is Chocolate Decadence at Pechanga. An incredible array of sinful chocolates and pastries are featured from the bakeshops of Pechanga’s Executive Pastry Chef, Jean-Jacques Granet. Chef Jean-Jacques puts down his whisk briefly to join us.

Wilson Creek Winery is a family-owned winery in the heart of Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country known for its quality wines and warm hospitality. The winery features a welcoming tasting room, full-service restaurant with vineyard view dining and expansive patio, creek side picnic area, indoor and outdoor conference and event spaces, romantic wedding venue and exclusive retreat accommodations. We’ll uncork it all with Winemaker Gus Vizgirda.

The Great Oak Steakhouse at Pechanga is one of the most highly regarded fine dining restaurants in the Inland Empire. It’s premium seafood, 100 per cent Prime Angus beef, and an exceptional wine cellar to match. The Great Oaks’ Manager, Alex Pena (who started at Pechanga 13 years ago as a server), is our guest.

Pechanga is well along with an ambitious $285 million expansion of the Hotel and all other guest amenities on the property with the exception of the Casino facilities. A new 2,400 space parking garage has just opened as the first part of the enhancements. Pechanga’s Digital Marketing Manager, Sean Macready fills us in.

Chef Marlene Moore is Pechanga’s two-time defending chili champ. She oversees all the food in the always busy Temptations Food Walk, Bingo Hall and the Poker Room. We’ll chat with Chef Marlene about what’s new on her menus.

We love inspirational entrepreneurial food success stories. For Melba Artea of Crown City Toffee it all started with a family recipe for toffee (with chocolate & nuts) and a pressing need to provide more financial resources for her Family. Crown City Toffee is part of the Pechanga Wine Festival. We’ll get the full story on her popular toffee line that started in her home kitchen.

Temecula Valley has become a popular destination for both day visitors and longer stays, too. Temecula-based food, wine & travel journalists, Susan & Todd Montgomery, provide the local perspective. Sue is on the Board of Directors (also the Treasurer) of the International Food Wine & Travel Writers Association.

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

Jean Jacques GranetFriday, February 10th is the always incredible Chocolate Decadence at Pechanga. An eye-popping array of truly decadent chocolates and pastries are featured from the bakeshops of Pechanga’s Executive Pastry Chef, Jean-Jacques Granet.

Jean-Jacques Granet, an acclaimed pastry chef who has worked on three continents, is the Executive Pastry Chef at Pechanga Resort & Casino. After spending nearly 15 years as pastry chef at two of the most prestigious luxury resorts in Las Vegas, Granet is now happy to call Southern California home.

Chef Jean-Jacques arrived at Pechanga in March 2015 and has implemented positive changes to the 20-person in-house bakery and pastry shop. He has changed the lineup of desserts offered at Journey’s End golf course restaurant, The Great Oak Steakhouse, Paisano’s Italian restaurant and Umi Sushi & Oyster Bar.

He’s always working on improvements to the desserts and pastries offered at Blends Coffee & Wine Bar. Ongoing is efforts with each of the 11 dining outlets and banquets departments to fulfill and exceed guests’ expectations in the sweets’ department.

Chef Jean-Jacques puts down his whisk briefly to join us.

Gus VizgirdaWilson Creek Winery is a family-owned winery in the heart of Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country known for its quality wines and warm hospitality. The winery features a welcoming tasting room, full-service restaurant with vineyard view dining and expansive patio, creek side picnic area, indoor and outdoor conference and event spaces, romantic wedding venue and exclusive retreat accommodations.

“Delightfully referred to as our “extended family,” the Wilson family is proud to have built a community around the sharing of wine, the celebration of family and the passion to enhance the lives of everyone our brand touches.”

Today, Wilson Creek’s 90 acres of old growth vines grace the Temecula Valley hills and produce over 40,000 cases yearly and include several award-winning varietals.  The two large Tuscan-inspired buildings house a unique tasting room, a grand ballroom and elegant restaurant.

Just as founders Gerry and Rosie Wilson wanted a place where family could come together, the winery grounds feature several spaces designed to bring people together including gazebos, a concert stage, outdoor patio dining and, of course, the peaceful sounds of Wilson Creek.

“The dream and vision of Wilson Creek continues to thrive with three generations of Wilsons involved in day-to-day operations, from wine tasting and tours to weddings and corporate events.”

They are known for their celebratory Almond Sparking Wine (which initially put them on the map) and Gus’ White Cabernet Sauvignon.

We’ll uncork it with Winemaker Gus Vizgirda.

Alex PenaThe Great Oak Steakhouse at Pechanga is one of the most highly regarded fine dining restaurants in the Inland Empire. It’s premium seafood, 100 per cent Prime Angus beef, and an exceptional wine cellar to match. It’s a consistent AAA Four-Diamond Award establishment.

“With an outstanding menu created by award-winning head chef Martin Venegas, a visit to Great Oak promises to be memorable on every level. Martin’s philosophy is no secret: find the best product, use the right ingredients, and execute every creation in a way that brings forward the very best of the flavor profile. Taste the art of deep culinary passion at this signature dining destination.”

The Great Oaks’ accomplished Manager, Alex Pena (who started at Pechanga 13 years ago as a server), is our guest.

Sean MacReadyPechanga is well along with an ambitious $285 million expansion of the Hotel and all other guest amenities on the property with the exception of the Casino facilities. A new 2,400 space parking garage has just opened as the first part of the enhancements.

The project involves adding a new, AAA Four Diamond, 568-room and suite hotel wing; a stand-alone luxury two-story spa and salon with 17 treatment rooms, a fitness center and hydrotherapy pool terrace; a resort-style pool complex with eight pool areas; two new restaurants; and an additional 67,000 square feet of event space.

“We estimate the expansion will result in an economic output of over $550 million, generating roughly 2,944 jobs up front as a result of construction-related activities,” said Dr. Christopher Thornberg, Founding Partner of Beacon Economics. “We estimate the local economy will benefit from an additional 560 jobs per year going forward as a result of expanded operations at Pechanga Resort & Casino.”

Pechanga’s Digital Marketing Manager, Sean MacReady fills us in.

Marlene Moore at the Pechanga Microbrew Festival and Chili CookoffChef Marlene Moore is Pechanga’s two-time chili champ. She oversees the always busy Temptations Food Walk.

Her realm includes Caffee Cocoa – Fine Coffees and Coffee (24 hours), Pronto Italian, Agave Mexican Delights, American Classics (24 hours), Little Wok Asian Specialties, Pechanga Fried Chicken and Banh Mi (made to order) and hot dog carts.

In addition to Temptations Food Walk, Chef Marlene oversees all the food in the long-running Bingo Parlor and bustling Poker Room.

We’ll chat with Chef Marlene about what’s new on her menus.

Melba ArteaWe love inspirational entrepreneurial food success stories. For Melba Artea of Crown City Toffee it all started with a family recipe for toffee (with chocolate & nuts) and a pressing need to provide more financial resources for her Family.

“Our English toffee is made with the freshest ingredients available. It is crispy with a wonderful buttery crunch and topped with a coat of creamy chocolate (milk or dark) with fresh-roasted almonds sprinkled on top.”

“Our Peanut Butter Drizzle is a huge favorite of many of our customers. It’s roasted peanuts topped over melted Peanut Butter Morsels and drizzled with milk chocolate.”

Crown City Toffee is part of the Pechanga Wine Festival. We’ll get the full story from Melba on her popular toffee line that started in her home kitchen. Based on demand they have graduated to producing in a commercial kitchen.

Susan and Todd MontgomeryTemecula Valley has become a popular destination for both day visitors and longer stays, too. In addition to the Pechanga Resort & Casino there are championship golf courses, the magnificent Temecula wine country and the attractions of Old Town Temecula.

Temecula-based food, wine & travel journalists, Susan & Todd Montgomery, join us to provide the local perspective. Sue is on the Board of Directors (also the Treasurer) of the International Food Wine & Travel Writers Association. Todd is the duo’s official photographer.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Andy Harris
Segment Two: Jean-Jacques Granet, Executive Pastry Chef, Pechanga Resort & Casino
Segment Three: Gus Vizgirda, Winemaker, Wilson Creek Winery
Segment Four: Alex Pena, Manager, Great Oak Steakhouse, Pechanga Resort & Casino, Temecula
Segment Five: Sean Macready, Social Media / Digital Manager, Pechanga Resort & Casino
Segment Six: Chef Marlene Moore, Temptations Food Walk, Pechanga Resort & Casino
Segment Seven: Melba and Steve Artea, Crown City Toffee
Segment Eight: Food, Wine & Travel Journalists, Susan & Todd Montgomerys

February 4: Gold Medalists Team USA from Bocuse d’Or, B. Toffee, Yardbird Southern Table, Sara Moulton

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Andy Harris, Co-Host & Executive Producer & Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish Restaurant Group
Segment Two: Betsy Thagard, Founder, B. toffee, Newport Beach
Segment Three: John Kunkel, 50 Eggs, Inc & Yardbird Southern Table & Bar, The Venetian, Las Vegas
Segment Four: Chef Sara Moulton, Public Television’s “Sara’s Weeknight Meals”
Segment Five: Chef Andrew Gruel, Founder & Chief Seafood Officer, Slapfish Restaurant Group
Segment Six: Team USA Head Coach Chef Philip Tessier, Hestan Smart Cooking Culinary Director
Segment Seven: Team USA Vice President Chef Gavin Kaysen, Spoon and Stable, Minneapolis

Now an enticing preview of this Saturday’s overflowing show with Co-Hosts Andy Harris and Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s actually a pretty good thing…

An award-winning, handcrafted toffee, B. toffee’s “crunchy perfection of sweetness” offers, perhaps, the ultimate chocolate indulgence. (Think Valentine’s Day…) Combining only the finest, freshest, and most natural ingredients, Newport Beach local Betsy Thagard spent years of passionate experimenting to create the perfect toffee. Betsy is our guest.

New for 2017 is Mesa’s (Costa Mesa) Chef’s Tables which will occur every Tuesday evening. Each month will host a unique musical inspiration and theme. Instead of only having one shot at experiencing Chef Niki Starr’s specialty menu, guests will have multiple opportunities to attend, and at a lower price. Chef Niki joins us with a preview of the February menu.

John Kunkel’s (50 Eggs, Inc.) lauded Yardbird Southern Table & Bar landed at the Venetian Resort in Las Vegas in January of 2015. The original is in Miami. A new 50 Eggs, Inc. concept will soon open next door to Yardbird (in the former db Brasserie space) at The Venetian. John is here with all the details.

One of the early stars of Food Network, Chef Sara Mouton, is back with us. Her new book is Sara Moutlton’s Home Cooking 101 – How to Make Everything Taste Better.

We support our active duty service-people. We got a call from an Active-Duty Marine. He requested a primer on cooking duck. Chef Andrew Gruel to the rescue. We aim to please…

We’ve been enthusiastically following Team USA’s progress (backed by the ment’or BKB Foundation) in the bi-annual Bocuse d’Or International Culinary Competition for the last five years. Late last month Team USA achieved the impossible – Gold in Lyon. Team USA’s Coach Philip Tessier and Team USA Vice President Gavin Kaysen join us to savor this tremendous achievement for the culinary arts in the United States. Both are former competitors in the Bocuse d’Or themselves.

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

Betsy ThagardAn award-winning, handcrafted toffee, B. toffee’s “crunchy perfection of sweetness” offers the ultimate indulgence. (Think Valentine’s Day…) Combining only the finest, freshest, and most natural ingredients, Newport Beach local Betsy Thagard spent years of passionate experimenting to create the perfect toffee. At first she only shared it with friends as an anxiously anticipated Holiday Gift. Now it’s thoughtfully available to us all.

Today, B. toffee is growing nationwide with premiere placement at the country’s most noted gourmet markets and specialty stores. B. toffee is recognized as a superior quality product with its sophisticated, sleek packaging being described as a “crunchy perfection of sweetness” and has also taken a bite out of the corporate, and party favor market.

Most recently B. toffee received top GOLD honors for “Top Toffee” and “Best Packaging” by the Taste Awards in San Francisco, CA. Also awarded the “Official Toffee” at The Golden Foodie Awards-the highest Culinary Foodie Awards in Orange County, CA.

Demand has increased to the point where B. toffee has recently relocated to a much larger production and packaging facility. The product is still attentively made and packaged by hand in small batches.

“Sharing my B. toffee product with the world has been a dream come true, and I am so proud and honored by the partnerships developed over the past year,” said Thagard.  “The move to the new facility will allow B. toffee to continue to grow, and, in turn, dedicate more resources to a project close to my heart, the B. Giving Initiative, which, in conjunction with local charities, allows for B. toffee to impact the community in a positive way.”

Betsy is our guest.

John KunkelJohn Kunkel’s (50 Eggs, Inc.) lauded Yardbird Southern Table & Bar landed at the Venetian Resort in Las Vegas in January of 2015. The original is in Miami. The motto is “Southern from Scratch,” a modern take on Southern fare.

Founded by John Kunkel, 50 Eggs, Inc. is a multi-faceted, full-service culinary and hospitality firm focused on developing cutting-edge brands with unparalleled dining experiences. Named Restaurant Hospitality Magazine’s “Coolest Multi-Concept Companies in the Land”, 50 Eggs, Inc. owns and operates the James Beard-nominated and award winning Yardbird Southern Table & Bar in Miami and Las Vegas, Swine Southern Table & Bar in Miami, and Spring Chicken in South Beach, Coral Gables, Fort Lauderdale, and the Miami International Airport.

50 Eggs, Inc. will open its first international location in 2017, Yardbird Southern Table & Bar at Singapore’s Marina Bay Sands. The brand’s first Latin concept, CHICA, will open at the Venetian Las Vegas in 2017 (in the former db Brasserie space). The menu is from acclaimed chef, Lorena Garcia.

John is here with all the details.

Sara MoultonChef Sara Moulton was one of the first breakout stars of the then embryonic Food Network and is currently the host of Public Television’s “Sara’s Weeknight Meals.” She is also the author of the Associated Press column “Kitchen Wise.”

Her newest cookbook is the ambitious, Sara Moulton’s Home Cooking 101: How to Make Everything Taste Better.

Not just a collection of wonderful recipes, HOME COOKING 101 is a teaching manual aimed at the home cook. The recipes will indeed make it easier to put dinner on the table on a weeknight, but, as Sara notes in her introduction, “more important is that each recipe specifically demonstrates a tip or method that can make you a better and more confident cook while also teaching you to make your dishes taste better.”

Accordingly, the book’s first chapter is a compact and handy rulebook entitled “The Ten Basics of Good Home Cooking.” It advises the home cook as follows:

  • Shake hands with your stove
  • Buy a good knife
  • Get organized
  • Follow the recipe exactly the first time you make it
  • Dispense with mise en place
  • Reach for the salt
  • Balance flavors
  • Build umami
  • Use all your senses
  • Don’t waste food

As for the recipes, there are 150 of them—all new and accompanied by photographs that illustrate, step-by-step, the book’s key techniques. The book also boasts guest recipes from a stellar cast of some of Sara’s favorite chefs and cookbook authors, including Rick Bayless, Amanda Cohen, Hiroko Shimbo, Jacques Torres, Marc Vetri, and Grace Young.

In sum, Sara writes, “The goal of this book is two-fold: to sharpen your sense of taste and to provide you with a raft of time-tested techniques that I hope will become second nature to you.”

We’re back in the kitchen with Chef Sara.

Andrew Gruel at the AM830 KLAA StudiosWe gladly support our active duty service-people. We got a call from an Active-Duty Marine. He requested a primer on cooking duck.

Chef Andrew Gruel to the rescue. He’s about to open Two Birds

We aim to please…

Team USA wins Hold at the 2017 Bocuse D'orWe’ve been enthusiastically following Team USA’s progress (backed by the ment’or BKB Foundation) in the Bocuse d’Or International Culinary Competition for the last five years. Late last month Team USA achieved the impossible – Gold in Lyon. Team USA’s Coach Philip Tessier and Team USA Vice President Gavin Kaysen join us to savor this tremendous achievement for the culinary arts in the United States. Both are former competitors in the Bocuse d’Or themselves.

Kudos to Team USA’s Chef Mathew Peters and Commis Harrision Turone

USA’s Team USA Coach, Chef Philip Tessier, joins us in the 1st Segment.

USA’s Team USA Vice President, Gavin Kaysen, joins us in thre 2nd Segment. He is the James Beard Award-winning Executive Chef/Proprietor of Spoon & Stable in Minneapolis.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Andy Harris, Co-Host & Executive Producer & Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish Restaurant Group
Segment Two: Betsy Thagard, Founder, B. toffee, Newport Beach
Segment Three: John Kunkel, 50 Eggs, Inc & Yardbird Southern Table & Bar, The Venetian, Las Vegas
Segment Four: Chef Sara Moulton, Public Television’s “Sara’s Weeknight Meals”
Segment Five: Chef Andrew Gruel, Founder & Chief Seafood Officer, Slapfish Restaurant Group
Segment Six: Team USA Head Coach Chef Philip Tessier, Hestan Smart Cooking Culinary Director
Segment Seven: Team USA Vice President Chef Gavin Kaysen, Spoon and Stable, Minneapolis

January 28: Live from Richmond, BC and the Chinese New Year Celebration!

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Andy Harris, Co-Host & Executive Producer
Segment Two: Duane Owen, Executive Chef, Pechanga Resort & Casino, Temecula
Segment Three: Executive Chef Danilo Ibarra of the Marriott Vancouver Airport Hotel
Segment Four: Dominique Duby of Wild Sweets, Richmond, B.C.
Segment Five: Executive Chef Angus An, Maenam, Vancouver
Segment Six: Karsten Purbs, Director, Food & Beverage, River Rock Casino Resort, Richmond, B.C.
Segment Seven: Lee Man, Chinese Food Expert & Founding Judge, Chinese Restaurant Awards
Segment Eight: Sommelier Rachel von Sturmer, Vancouver & Okanagan Valley, B.C.

The Dumpling Trail in Richmond British Columbia“The SoCal Restaurant Show” is going international. On Saturday morning, January 28th the show is live from Richmond, B.C. (“Where the Far East Meets the Canadian West Coast”) for their festive celebration of Chinese New Year. It’s a genuine first…

Now am enticing preview of this Saturday’s fully-loaded show with Co-Host & Executive Producer Andy Harris. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s actually a pretty good thing…

The Pechanga Resort + Casino’s executive chef, Duane Owen, is no stranger to the show. Chef Duane joins us to preview Pechanga’s upcoming Chocolate Decadence Event (February 10th) and the 9th Annual Pechanga Wine Festival on February 11th. Perfect Valentine’s Day gift…

Executive Chef Danilo Ibarra of the Marriott Vancouver Airport Hotel in Richmond. B.C. oversees The American Grille, The Lotus Land Lounge and all other food and beverage provided on-property. We’ll meet him.

Dominique and Cindy Duby are the Chief Chocolate Officers of Richmond’s one-of-a-kind boutique chocolatier, Wild Sweets. They join us in sweet conversation.

Executive Chef Angus An is the proprietor of Maenam, Vancouver Magazine’s selection as Best Thai Restaurant. He’s cooked at the James Beard Foundation in New York. We’ll talk about the flavor balance of Thai cuisine with Chef An as well as his growing restaurant empire.

A popular visitor attraction in Richmond is the River Rock Casino Resort located on the Fraser River. There are eight tempting dining options there including the fine-dining Tramonto and Chinese specialties at Sea Harbor Seafood Restaurant. Karsten Purbs, River Rock’s Food & Beverage Director, is our able guide.

Chinese, Taiwanese, Indian, Greek, Thai, Japanese, Italian – diners can enjoy authentic and delicious culinary styles from across the globe, without ever leaving Richmond. Richmond is home to more than 800 restaurants, half of them Asian and many highly acclaimed. Local food expert Lee Man, founding judge for the Chinese Restaurant Awards, joins us with commentary on Chinese New Year and the diversity of appealing cuisine in Richmond.

There is a burgeoning local wine industry in British Columbia. Sommelier Shiva Reddy, Wine Director & Assistant Manager of Royal Dinette (Vancouver Magazine’s Best New Restaurant 2016), uncorks this for us. BC wines are well represented on their menu.

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

Duane Owen of Pechanga Casino and ResortThe Pechanga Resort + Casino’s executive chef, Duane Owen, is no stranger to the show. Chef Duane joins us to preview Pechanga’s upcoming Chocolate Decadence Event (February 10th) and the 9th Annual Pechanga Wine Festival on February 11th.

CHOCOLATE DECADENCE EVENT

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 10, 2017 • 7-10PM
VIP* Ticket $75 • General Admission $55 • Designated Driver $30

Enjoy an array of chocolates and pastries while sampling a variety of wines, domestic sparkling wines, champagnes, spirits and dessert wines along with live music.

*VIP ticket includes early entry beginning at 5:30PM, upgraded souvenir wine glass, sliced seasonal fruit, international and domestic cheese and tray-passed hors d’oeuvres.

9TH ANNUAL WINE FESTIVAL

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 11, 2017 • 1-5PM
VIP* Ticket $85 • General Admission $65 • Designated Driver $40

LIVE MUSIC

The most notable wineries from Napa Valley, Sonoma County, Temecula, France, Italy, Spain, Argentina, Chile, Australia, New Zealand and beyond will offer a few hundred of their finest vintages along with live music. Sip and savor as you sample a variety of distinguished dishes from the award-winning chefs of Pechanga Resort & Casino.

Combo VIP Ticket $140 • Combo General Admission Ticket $100

Danilo IbarraExecutive Chef Danilo Ibarra of the Marriott Vancouver Airport Hotel in Richmond. B.C. oversees The American Grille, The Lotus Land Lounge and all other food and beverage provided on-property. We’ll meet him.

“A world of culinary delights awaits you at The American Grille. Located in the heart of Richmond at the Vancouver Airport Marriott Hotel, it is the city’s most popular business lunch and dinner destination. Offering a comfortable business-casual setting by day and elegant candlelit dining at sunset, The American Grille is sure to wow you and your guests.”

“Our menus offer the best of the season from the Pacific Northwest, celebrating the richness and diversity of North American cuisine, while incorporating the freshest local products available. Sample one of our specialties or just relax and people watch while enjoying one of our house made desserts.”

Dominique and CIndy DubyDominique and Cindy Duby are the Chief Chocolate Officers of Richmond’s boutique chocolatier, Wild Sweets. They join us in sweet conversation.

“As Canada’s only science-based cocoa bean-to-bar chocolate-makers, we turn premium cocoa beans into ‘Haute’ chocolates, novel confections & designer pastry. Located in Richmond, Greater Vancouver Region, BC, Canada.”

Angus AnExecutive Chef Angus An is the proprietor of Maenam, Vancouver Magazine’s selection as Best Thai Restaurant. He’s cooked at the James Beard Foundation in New York. We’ll talk about the flavor balance of Thai cuisine with Chef An as well as his growing restaurant empire.

Chef Angus An is a graduate of New York’s prestigious French Culinary Institute, where he worked under the world’s culinary greats including Jacques Pépin, Alain Sailhac and André Soltner, and later apprenticed at Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s legendary Jo-Jo. After graduating from the FCI, Angus trained under Chef Normand Laprise at Montréal’s Toqué before moving to London, UK, where he worked at Michelin-starred restaurants including The Ledbury and The Fat Duck. Following this he cooked at Chef David Thompson’s famed Nahm, which is also where Angus met his wife, Kate.

Upon returning to Vancouver, Kate and Angus opened their first restaurant, Gastropod. Lauded by diners and critics alike, Gastropod received several awards for cuisine and atmosphere before closing its doors in 2009.

In May of that year, Maenam was born. Serving authentic Thai dishes, the kitchen at Maenam is directed by both Angus and Thai-born Kate. Perennial winner of Vancouver Magazine’s “Best Thai” award, Maenam has also received rave reviews from The New York Times, USA Today, and Food & Wine magazine.

Karsten PurbsA popular visitor attraction in Richmond is the River Rock Casino Resort located on the Fraser River. There are eight tempting dining options there including the fine-dining Tramonto and Chinese specialties at Sea Harbor Seafood Restaurant. Karsten Purbs, River Rock’s Food & Beverage Director, is our able guide.

“Nestled along the Fraser River, in a gorgeous West Coast setting, River Rock is Western Canada’s only Four-Diamond Casino Resort, where luxury, ambiance and exceptional hospitality await. As with everything at River Rock, when it comes to accommodations, the choice is yours. Enjoy bright, contemporary, deluxe rooms at The Hotel, or relax in style and luxury in a suite at The Resort.”

“Fill your days with a variety of activities, including a visit to our first-class spa, or take a refreshing swim in the beautiful resort pool. Dine in your room or explore the resort and discover the restaurant that suits your mood. Take a stroll on the marina boardwalk, or sit back and relax on our gorgeous waterside patio at Curve Lounge. In the evening, take in a concert at the Show Theatre, and test your skill and luck at one of the largest, most dazzling casinos in Canada. At River Rock, the possibilities are truly endless.”

Lee ManChinese, Taiwanese, Indian, Greek, Thai, Japanese, Italian – diners can enjoy authentic and delicious culinary styles from across the globe, without ever leaving Richmond. Richmond is home to more than 800 restaurants, half of them Asian and many highly acclaimed.

Local food expert Lee Man, founding judge for the Chinese Restaurant Awards and contributor to Vancouver Magazine, joins us with commentary on Chinese New Year and the diversity of cuisine in Richmond. Lee is also a judge for the Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Andy Harris, Co-Host & Executive Producer
Segment Two: Duane Owen, Executive Chef, Pechanga Resort & Casino, Temecula
Segment Three: Executive Chef Danilo Ibarra of the Marriott Vancouver Airport Hotel
Segment Four: Dominique Duby of Wild Sweets, Richmond, B.C.
Segment Five: Executive Chef Angus An, Maenam, Vancouver
Segment Six: Karsten Purbs, Director, Food & Beverage, River Rock Casino Resort, Richmond, B.C.
Segment Seven: Lee Man, Chinese Food Expert & Founding Judge, Chinese Restaurant Awards
Segment Eight: Sommelier Rachel von Sturmer, Vancouver & Okanagan Valley, B.C.

January 21: James Republic, Mad Hungry Woman, Sam King, West Coast Prime Meats, Wine Exchange, Pizza Throwdown

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Andy Harris, Co-Host & Executive Producer
Segment Two: Executive Chef / Restaurateur Dean James Max of DJM Restaurants & Executive Chef David MacLennan of James Republic, Long Beach
Segment Three: Anita Lau, “Diary of a Mag Hungry Woman” Blogger
Segment Four: Restaurateur Sam King, CEO, King’s Seafood Company Part One
Segment Five: Restaurateur Sam King, CEO, King’s Seafood Company Part Two
Segment Six: The “Meatheads” from West Coast Prime Meats, Terry Hanks and Jay Henderson on Chicken
Segment Seven: Kyle Meyer, Co-Proprietor, Wine Exchange, Santa Ana
Segment Eight: The Pizza Throwdown. OC Baking’s Dean Kim and Brent Omeste of Centro Collective

The Dumpling Trail in Richmond British Columbia“The SoCal Restaurant Show” is going international. On Saturday morning, January 28th the show is live from Richmond, B.C. (“Where the Far East Meets the Canadian West Coast”) for their festive celebration of Chinese New Year.

Now am enticing preview of this Saturday’s overflowing show with Co-Host & Executive Producer Andy Harris. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s actually probably a pretty good thing…

The Founder and Co-Proprietor of James Republic Restaurant in Long Beach is Chef Dean James Max of DJM Restaurants, a multiple James Beard Award nominee. His opening Executive Chef there is the talented David MacLennan. In a bit over three years they have made this relaxed vibe restaurant one of the best dining destinations in Long Beach. On February 8th at James Republic at Courtyard by Marriott Downtown Long Beach they are presenting a multi-course dining spectacular with Chef Amar Santana to benefit Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP.) Chefs Dean & David join us to preview C-CAP’s Winter Harvest Benefit Dinner at James Republic on Wednesday, February 8th.

Our regular Contributor on the San Diego dining scene, Anita Lau, The Mad Hungry Woman blogger, joins us. She will provide us with the highlights of her “Best Meal” of 2016. Surprisingly (because Orange County is her regular beat) it turns out to be the destination restaurant in a boutique hotel in Downtown San Diego!

The original Water Grill, one of the area’s best fine-dining seafood restaurants, opened in Downtown Los Angeles in 1989. There are now busy locations in Downtown Los Angeles, Santa Monica, San Diego, South Coast Plaza – Costa Mesa, and, just launched this month, Dallas. The new South Coast Plaza location is nearly 18,000 square feet. We’ll meet proprietor & distinguished restaurateur Sam King of King’s Seafood Company.

Chicken is a versatile protein, typically a good value, and much in the news these days. We’re talking Chicken 101 with our resident Meatheads from West Coast Prime Meats, Terry Hanks and Jay Henderson. Between the two of them they clock in with over 50 years of experience in the business!

How about some premium wine to celebrate the New Year? Our resident wine expert, Kyle Meyer of Wine Exchange in Santa Ana, joins us. He’ll preview the expectations for the 2016 vintage in California and we’ll see what else he’ll uncork for us. Always highly informative & entertaining.

We love it when competitive chefs generously donate their time to support a worthy cause. Behold, the Pizza Throwdown on Sunday, January 28th from 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Master Baker Dean Kim’s OC Baking in Orange benefiting Chef Bill Bracken’s Bracken’s Kitchen (created to help end food insecurity in Orange County and beyond.) Only 100 VIP and General Admission tickets are available.

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

Dean James MaxThe Founder and Co-Proprietor of James Republic Restaurant in Long Beach is Chef Dean James Max of DJM Restaurants, a multiple James Beard Award nominee. His opening Executive Chef there is the talented David MacLennan. In a bit over three years they have made this relaxed vibe restaurant one of the best dining destinations in Long Beach. Their Brunch is a standout, too. Think Chorizo & Cheddar Croissant.

On February 8th at James Republic at Courtyard by Marriott Downtown Long Beach they are presenting a multi-course dining spectacular along with Chef Amar Santana (Vaca & Broadway by Amar Santana) to benefit the Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP.) Chef Amar is a distinguished C-CAP Alum.

The evening includes a cocktail reception with local craft beer, sparkling wine and still wine and passed hors d’oeuvres. Then it’s a sumptuous seated dinner with three waves of ample food platters served Family-style. Each wave of the three incudes separate platters from each chef. That’s three platters of delights for each wave. Dessert and gourmet chocolates conclude the festivities. If you go away hungry it’s your own fault. There is also both a live & silent auction with crave-worthy items with great appeal for any foodie.

Tickets (and there are only 150 reservations available) are $195 per guest with $150 of that being Tax Deductible.

Chefs Dean & David join us to preview C-CAP’s Winter Harvest Benefit Dinner at James Republic on Wednesday, February 8th.

Anita Lau of Mad Hungry WomanOur regular Contributor on the San Diego dining scene, Anita Lau, The Mad Hungry Woman blogger, joins us. She will provide us with the tempting highlights of her Best Meal” of 2016.

Surprisingly (because Orange County is her regular beat) It turns out to be the destination restaurant in a boutique hotel in Downtown San Diego! A new executive chef is stirring the pot there with the unexpected addition of some Filipino ingredients.

Think Venison Tartare…

Sam KingThe original Water Grill, one of the area’s best fine-dining seafood restaurants, opened in Downtown Los Angeles in 1989. There are now busy locations in Downtown Los Angeles, Santa Monica, San Diego, South Coast Plaza – Costa Mesa, and, just launched this month, Dallas. The new South Coast Plaza location is nearly 18,000 square feet.

Focusing on first-of-season seafood, Water Grill prides itself in offering the broadest selection of fin fish, oysters, crustaceans and shellfish to its guests.

“It’s been a dream of ours to bring Water Grill to Orange County,” says Sam King, CEO of the Orange County based King’s Seafood Company. “We hold this project near and dear to our hearts, and we’re so excited to open Water Grill right here in our own backyard. We look forward to sharing our passion for outstanding quality seafood and attentive service with our longtime friends and neighbors.”

The largest Water Grill to date, the nearly 18,000 square-foot restaurant and adjacent patio were designed in partnership with Hatch Design Group. Taking inspiration from a refurbished ship, the restaurant features reclaimed locally-sourced woods and authentic nautical components paired with rustic and iron finishes. A central, copper-top bar anchors the space, while an additional bar is located in the outdoor patio area, offering a multitude of seating options.

The 500-seat restaurant boasts several private dining options and multiple event spaces, ideal for intimate celebrations, business gatherings, large parties and charity events.

We’ll meet proprietor & distinguished restaurateur Sam King of King’s Seafood Company.

King’s Seafood Distribution, the company’s private seafood distribution operation based in Santa Ana, CA provides all the seafood for Water Grill’s menu. Streamlining the process from ocean to table, King’s Seafood Company provides the best quality and largest variety of available seafood to its 20 restaurants. Menus are crafted daily to account for freshly caught fish and seasonal culinary changes for Water Grill guest to enjoy.

“We’re lucky to have incredibly long-lasting relationships with fishermen and purveyors along both coasts, providing a vast selection of quality products for our restaurants,” said King. “We pride ourselves in having a wide variety of fresh seafood. Our continued goal is to have as many live products as possible.”

King’s Seafood Company is based in Costa Mesa, California and has evolved from more than 70 years of family restaurant and hospitality experience, opening their first restaurant in Los Angeles in 1945. Founded by cousins Sam and Jeff King, the company operates six different restaurant concepts that include the King’s Fish House concept with 11 locations throughout Southern California, Nevada, and Arizona.  King’s also operates King Signature Group, which includes Water Grill in Downtown Los Angeles, Santa Monica South Coast Plaza, Dallas and San Diego, 555 East in Long Beach, Lou & Mickey’s in San Diego’s Gaslamp District, Pier Burger on the Santa Monica Pier, and Fish Camp in Huntington Beach.

Chicken 101 from the Meatheads at West Coast Prime MeatsChicken is a versatile protein, typically a good value, and much in the news these days. What should you know about the antibiotics in fresh chicken that many of the fast food chains have promised to eliminate?

Also, what is Free Range Chicken anyway? Is it really worth the premium price?

We’re talking Chicken 101 with our resident Meatheads from West Coast Prime Meats, Terry Hanks and Jay Henderson. Between the two of them they clock in with over 50 years of experience in the business!

Kyle Meyer of Wine ExchangeHow about some premium wine to celebrate the New Year? Our resident wine expert, Kyle Meyer of Wine Exchange in Santa Ana, joins us.

Kyle will preview the expectations for the 2016 vintage in California and we’ll see what else he’ll uncork for us. Always highly informative & entertaining.

Pizza ThrowdownWe love it when competitive chefs generously donate their time to support a worthy cause. Behold, the Pizza Throwdown on Sunday, January 29th from 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Master Baker Dean Kim’s OC Baking Co. in Orange benefiting Chef Bill Bracken’s Bracken’s Kitchen (created to help end food insecurity in Orange County and beyond.) Only 100 VIP & Regular Admission tickets available.

It all began when Chefs Chad Urata and Brent Omeste of the embryonic Centro Collective challenged OC Baking Company’s Master Baker Dean Kim to a pizza throwdown. Not realizing that Dean thrives on wagers, Dean took it one step further and enlisted veteran OC pizza master Sandro Nardone to join him.

When other chefs caught wind of it via social media, The Veterans’ team is now six strong with the addition of Chef Dee Nyugen, Chef Greg Daniels, Lisa Gilmore and of course, Chef Bill Bracken.

On Sunday, January 29th, the friendly rivalry will include both teams creating their best pizza to be judged by participants at the event. Who will win the challenge? You be the judge!

All tickets (VIP @ $50 & General Admission @ $20) include pizza, non-alcoholic beverages and a token to vote for your favorite team.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Andy Harris, Co-Host & Executive Producer
Segment Two: Executive Chef / Restaurateur Dean James Max of DJM Restaurants & Executive Chef David MacLennan of James Republic, Long Beach
Segment Three: Anita Lau, “Diary of a Mag Hungry Woman” Blogger
Segment Four: Restaurateur Sam King, CEO, King’s Seafood Company Part One
Segment Five: Restaurateur Sam King, CEO, King’s Seafood Company Part Two
Segment Six: The “Meatheads” from West Coast Prime Meats, Terry Hanks and Jay Henderson on Chicken
Segment Seven: Kyle Meyer, Co-Proprietor, Wine Exchange, Santa Ana
Segment Eight: The Pizza Throwdown. OC Baking’s Dean Kim and Brent Omeste of Centro Collective