Show 174, June 4, 2016: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris & Chef Andrew Gruel

Andrew Gruel at the AM830 KLAA StudiosExecutive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, LAX, Irvine at UCI and, most recently, Brea, is back as today’s special Guest Host. He’s just back from Chicago where he received Nation’s Restaurant News’ Trendsetter MenuMaster Award for Slapfish.

Congrats to our friends at Chefs’ Toys, Steve Dickler and Mike Krepistman, on being awarded the 2016 Top Achiever-Dealer honor by Foodservice Equipment & Supplies Magazine. They received this prestigious award on May 21st at a reception at The Four Seasons Chicago as part of the recent National Restaurant Association annual gathering in Chicago.

Now a provocatively tempting preview of Saturday’s abundant show and not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re doing it right we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. The way we see it that’s actually a pretty good thing…

The Los Angeles Philharmonic Association has recently announced the dynamic new offerings from Hollywood Bowl Food + Wine for the 2016 summer season. Hollywood Bowl Food + Wine — developed with the LA Phil, local restaurateurs James Beard Award-winning chef Suzanne Goin and business partner Caroline Styne of The Lucques Group, and Sodexo Sports & Leisure  — will offer patrons a broad range of enticing new, reimagined culinary experiences. The vision is brought to life by Goin and Styne, whose restaurants, Lucques, a.o.c., Tavern and the Larder, have defined, and advanced, Los Angeles’ culinary tastes since 1998. Chef Suzanne Goin and Caroline Styne join us with all the tempting 411.

The 8th Annual Pechanga Microbrew & Craft Beer Festival and Chili Cook-off returns to the Pechanga Grand Ballroom on Saturday, June 11th. The “SoCal Restaurant Show” will be there broadcasting live from 10:00 a.m. to 12 Noon when the taps officially open. Pechanga’s Executive Chef, Duane Owen, is our guest. He’ll be chatting about the chili cook-off, a fiery annual competition among the talented Pechanga chefs.

Paley restaurant is located in Columbia Square, the birthplace of the Golden Age of Hollywood. During its heyday, the restaurant at Columbia Square was home to the celebrities, executives and others working in the area. Paley reimagines that creative culture for the modern age. Chef Greg Bernhardt (ex-Church & State), at the forefront of the California farm to table movement, serves a dynamic menu of seasonal and local ingredients in classic dishes with a modern twist. He joins us.

Three superstar cocktailians: Dale DeGroff, Gaz Regan, and Adam Seger, share the stories behind cocktails they created and named when The Museum of the American Cocktail (MOTAC) presents its next Los Angeles seminar, “Cocktail Genesis & the Language of Libations,” Tuesday, June 14, 2016 at Executive Chef Sherry Yard’s newest fine dining destination, The Tuck Room at iPic Theaters Westwood. Properly shaking the potent libations for us with their usual finesse are MOTAC’s creator, Dale DeGroff and MOTAC’s Philip Dobard.

It’s the 100th anniversary of the opening of the Looff Hippodrome on the classic Santa Monica Pier. Since 2010 the familiar Carousel Building there has been the home to Soda Jerk’s, an authentic, period soda fountain. Proprietor Kevin McCafferty has created a limited-edition sweet-salty potato-chip sundae to commemorate the occasion. He’s full-scooping as our guest.

There is a legitimate concern about rising mercury levels in certain seafood. No reason to panic. Our resident seafood authority, Chef Andrew Gruel, joins us to separate the honest truth from fanciful (and needlessly alarming) fiction. Find out what you really need to be concerned about. Remain calm…

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

Play

June 4: Suzanne Goin, Caroline Styne, Pechanga Microbrew Festival, Greg Bernhardt, Dale DeGroff, Philip Dobard, Soda Jerk’s, Andrew Gruel

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris & Chef Andrew Gruel
Segment Two: Caroline Styne, The Lucques Group, Hollywood Bowl Food + Wine
Segment Three: Chef Suzanne Goin, The Lucques Group, Hollywood Bowl Food + Wine
Segment Four: Executive Chef Duane Owen, Pechanga Resort and Casino
Segment Five: Chef Greg Bernhardt, Paley Restaurant, Hollywood
Segment Six: Museum of the American Cocktail’s Dale “King Cocktail” DeGroff and Philip Dobard
Segment Seven: Kevin McCafferty of Soda Jerk’s, Looff Hippodrome, Santa Monica Pier
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel – Mercury in Fish

Andrew Gruel at the AM830 KLAA StudiosExecutive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, LAX, Irvine at UCI and, most recently, Brea, is back as today’s special Guest Host. He’s just back from Chicago where he received Nation’s Restaurant News’ Trendsetter MenuMaster Award for Slapfish.

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

The Los Angeles Philharmonic Association has recently announced the dynamic new offerings from Hollywood Bowl Food + Wine for the 2016 summer season. Hollywood Bowl Food + Wine — developed with the LA Phil, local restaurateurs James Beard Award-winning chef Suzanne Goin and business partner Caroline Styne of The Lucques Group, and Sodexo Sports & Leisure  — will offer patrons a broad range of enticing new, reimagined culinary experiences. The vision is brought to life by Goin and Styne, whose restaurants, Lucques, a.o.c., Tavern and the Larder, have defined, and advanced, Los Angeles’ culinary tastes since 1998. Chef Suzanne Goin and Caroline Styne join us with all the tempting 411.

The 8th Annual Pechanga Microbrew & Craft Beer Festival and Chili Cook-off returns to the Pechanga Grand Ballroom on Saturday, June 11th. The “SoCal Restaurant Show” will be there broadcasting live from 10:00 a.m. to 12 Noon when the taps officially open. Pechanga’s Executive Chef, Duane Owen, is our guest. He’ll be chatting about the chili cook-off, a fiery annual competition among the talented Pechanga chefs.

Paley restaurant is located in Columbia Square, the birthplace of the Golden Age of Hollywood. During its heyday, the restaurant at Columbia Square was home to the celebrities, executives and others working in the area. Paley reimagines that creative culture for the modern age. Chef Greg Bernhardt (ex-Church & State), at the forefront of the California farm to table movement, serves a dynamic menu of seasonal and local ingredients in classic dishes with a modern twist. He joins us.

Three superstar cocktailians: Dale DeGroff, Gaz Regan, and Adam Seger, share the stories behind cocktails they created and named when The Museum of the American Cocktail (MOTAC) presents its next Los Angeles seminar, “Cocktail Genesis & the Language of Libations,” Tuesday, June 14, 2016 at Executive Chef Sherry Yard’s newest fine dining destination, The Tuck Room at iPic Theaters Westwood. Properly shaking the libations for us are MOTAC’s creator, Dale DeGroff and MOTAC’s Philip Dobard.

It’s the 100th anniversary of the opening of the Looff Hippodrome on the classic Santa Monica Pier. Since 2010 the familiar Carousel Building has been the home to Soda Jerk’s, an authentic, period soda fountain. Proprietor Kevin McCafferty has created a limited-edition sweet-salty potato-chip sundae to commemorate the occasion. He’s full-scooping as our guest.

There is a legitimate concern about rising mercury levels in certain seafood. No reason to panic. Our resident seafood authority, Chef Andrew Gruel, joins us to separate the honest truth from fanciful (and alarming) fiction. Find out what you really need to be concerned about. Remain calm…

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

Caroline StyneThe Los Angeles Philharmonic Association has recently announced the dynamic new offerings from Hollywood Bowl Food + Wine for the 2016 summer season. Hollywood Bowl Food + Wine — developed with the LA Phil, local restaurateurs James Beard Award-winning chef Suzanne Goin and business partner Caroline Styne of The Lucques Group, and Sodexo Sports & Leisure  — will offer patrons a broad range of enticing new, reimagined culinary experiences.

The vision is brought to life by Goin and Styne, whose restaurants, Lucques, a.o.c., Tavern and the Larder, have defined, and advanced, Los Angeles culinary tastes since 1998. Beverage Maven Caroline Styne of The Lucques Group now uncorks the details of the new beverage program.

Highlights include:
The Wine Bar by a.o.c.
– L.A.’s favorite wine bar comes to life at the Bowl featuring artisanal cheese and charcuterie, market-fresh salads, grilled fish and meats. The wine list, curated by Caroline Styne, features only wines that are farmed sustainably, organically or biodynamically, and are made by small-production, artisanal winemakers. A selection of craft brew and farmers’ market-driven cocktails made with soju and other wine-based liquors complete the offerings. Menu Highlight: Soft Polenta with Wild Mushrooms, Mascarpone and Gremolata

Marketplace – Goin and Styne’s casual Larder café-marketplace comes to the Bowl offering grab-and-go salads, hot entrées that include rotisserie chicken, barbecued beef brisket and mac n’ cheese, as well as other picnic-friendly sandwiches, cheese plates and foods prepared with the best local produce and products. Choose from a large selection of hand-picked wines, craft beers, sodas and waters as well as salty and sweet snacks such as Larder Baking Company cookies and brownies, candy, nuts and crackers. Menu Highlight: Slow-Roasted Salmon with Cucumber Yogurt, Quinoa and Turmeric

Lucques at the Circle – Fine dining for subscribers of the Pool Circle with a seasonal made-to-order menu and exceptional wine list styled from the award winning cuisine of Lucques, one of the defining restaurants of Los Angeles. Menu Highlight: Grilled Pork Chop with Cornbread-Chorizo Stuffing and Glazed Bing Cherries

Suzanne GoinChef Suzanne Goin now joins us with all the tempting 411 on the diverse, revamped food selections.

“Dining has long been an integral part of an evening at the Hollywood Bowl,” stated Gail Samuel, Executive Director of the LA Phil. “With the combined creativity and excellence of our new team, we have developed exciting new culinary options that will enhance the concert-going experience and contribute to making a night at the Bowl unforgettable.”

Whether it’s a picnic, a bottle of wine, street food from around the globe, supper in your box seat or dining at one of the on-site restaurants, visitors can take advantage of a wide variety of options for all tastes and preferences, including signature vegetarian dishes. The full spectrum also extends to catered events with a variety of locations for both small and large groups.

Duane Owen of Pechanga Casino and ResortThe 8th Annual Pechanga Microbrew & Craft Beer Festival and Chili Cook-off returns to the Pechanga Grand Ballroom on Saturday, June 11th. The “SoCal Restaurant Show” will be there broadcasting live from 10:00 a.m. to 12 Noon when the taps officially open. Pechanga’s Executive Chef, Duane Owen, is our guest. He’ll be chatting about the chili cook-off, a fiery annual competition among the talented Pechanga chefs.

In addition to sampling over 100 styles of craft beer guests have the opportunity to taste and savor eight varieties of house-prepared chili, fired up by the award-winning chefs at Pechanga Resort & Casino. It’s a yearly highlight.

A new chili champion was crowned by the guests last year at the annual Pechanga Microbrew Festival and Chili Cookoff. Temptations Food Court chef, Marlene Moore, tantalized the sold-out crowd with her “Temptation” Hearty Southern Style Chili. She edged out seven other Pechanga chefs’ chili varieties which included Texas-style chili with trio of meat, steak chili mac, and black bean chili con carne, with poblano rajas, crispy pork and shishito peppers. In a spirited competition Chef Marlene will be defending her title on June 11th.

With 219 votes out of a total of 914 from 2015 Microbrew Festival attendees, Chef Moore, originally from Trinidad and Tobago, unseated Chef Damian Stanley (the Executive Sous Chef of Pechanga) who had held the chili throne for two years. Stanley received third place with 153 votes. Kelsey’s chef, Ronnel Capacia, came in a close second with 155 votes.

One secret ingredient is out…We know that Chef Ronnel’s chili creation for 2016 will use Golden Road Brewing’s Get Up Offa That Brown, a toasty brown ale, in the recipe.

Greg BernhardtPaley restaurant is located in the restored Columbia Square, the birthplace of the Golden Age of Hollywood. During its heyday, the restaurant at Columbia Square was home to the celebrities, executives and others working in the area.

Paley reimagines that creative culture for the modern age. Chef Greg Bernhardt (ex-Church & State), at the forefront of the California farm to table movement, serves a dynamic menu of seasonal and local ingredients in classic dishes with a modern twist. He joins us.

Paley is named in celebration of the artistic and innovative era shaped by Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS) CEO and progressive visionary William S. Paley. Chef Greg Bernhardt serves a menu of dynamic and modern California cuisine with influences from L.A.’s multicultural heritage matched with unobtrusive service and a spirit of warmth and respect.

Owned and operated by worldwide hospitality group Plan Do See, Paley is named in celebration of the artistic and innovative era shaped by CBS visionary William S. Paley and his wife, Babe.

With the opening of Columbia Square in 1939, William S. Paley ushered in the Golden Age of Hollywood. Paley strives to reintroduce the glamour and excitement of Hollywood’s glory days.

Paley is now open for lunch, dinner and Weekend Brunch. Breakfast is coming soon…Paley features distinct dining areas. Inside, guests are greeted by the elegant bar with lounge seating, an intimate dining area at the core and a chef’s counter and table overlooking the open kitchen. An inviting shaded, landscaped outside patio located in the Courtyard of the former Columbia Square is another appealing dining area of Paley.

Dale DeGroffThree superstar cocktailians: Dale DeGroffGaz Regan, and Adam Seger, share the stories behind cocktails they created and named when The Museum of the American Cocktail (MOTAC) presents its next Los Angeles seminar, Cocktail Genesis & the Language of Libations,” Tuesday, June 14, 2016 @ 6:30 p.m. at Executive Chef Sherry Yard’s newest fine dining destination, The Tuck Room at iPic Theaters Westwood. Properly shaking the libations for us are MOTAC’s creator, Dale DeGroff and MOTAC’s Philip Dobard.

Ever wonder how a new cocktail is created? What goes into it: base spirit(s), modifiers, and garnish? And then how it’s named? Well, on June 14 MOTAC brings together three living legends, one of them, Dale DeGroff, aka “King Cocktail,” a James Beard Foundation Award Winner and Who’s Who Inductee, to tell the origin stories of five signature cocktails they themselves created, and why they carry the names so synonymous with their creators. Come pass a rich evening of storytelling and drinking, all while enjoying a spread of gourmet appetizers courtesy of dual James Beard Foundation Award Winner, Sherry Yard.

Soda JerksIt’s the 100th anniversary on Sunday, June 12th of the opening of the Looff Hippodrome on the classic Santa Monica Pier. Since 2010 the familiar Carousel Building has been the home to Soda Jerk’s, an authentic, period soda fountain.

Proprietor Kevin McCafferty has created a limited-edition sweet-salty potato-chip sundae to commemorate the occasion. He’s full-scooping as our guest.

For foodies seeking a special dessert conceived from the opening era, this is a rare opportunity to indulge in a limited-edition sweet-salty potato-chip sundae inspired by Pier history and created by Kevin McCafferty, dessert historian and owner of Soda Jerk’s soda fountain. The Brass Ring Sundae is one scoop of salted caramel topped with caramel sauce, one scoop of vanilla ice cream with chocolate, all covered in crushed potato chips with a single chip (the brass ring) on top.

The Looff Hippodrome is on the National Register of Historic Places since 1987 and was declared a Santa Monica Landmark in 1976. “When it first opened, the sound of the band organ from the Carousel could be heard all the way to downtown Santa Monica,” explains Jim Harris, historian for the Santa Monica Pier Restoration Corp. and author of the acclaimed book, Santa Monica Pier – A Century on the Last Great Pleasure Pier. “In many ways, it was and remains the heart of the city and we are excited to celebrate Looff’s dream 100 years later.  It is a testament to his great vision that the Hippodrome has withstood the test of time.”

100 years later, the Looff Hippodrome remains an example of timeless design and continues to stand as a testament to Looff’s vision.  The 100-year celebration will take place on Sunday, June 12, 2016 from 11am – 7:00pm.

Andrew Gruel and his son WilliamThere is a legitimate concern about rising mercury levels in certain seafood. No reason to panic. Our resident seafood authority, Chef Andrew Gruel, joins us to separate the honest truth from fanciful (and alarming) fiction. Find out what you really need to be concerned about. Remain calm…

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris & Chef Andrew Gruel
Segment Two: Caroline Styne, The Lucques Group, Hollywood Bowl Food + Wine
Segment Three: Chef Suzanne Goin, The Lucques Group, Hollywood Bowl Food + Wine
Segment Four: Executive Chef Duane Owen, Pechanga Resort and Casino
Segment Five: Chef Greg Bernhardt, Paley Restaurant, Hollywood
Segment Six: Museum of the American Cocktail’s Dale “King Cocktail” DeGroff and Philip Dobard
Segment Seven: Kevin McCafferty of Soda Jerk’s, Looff Hippodrome, Santa Monica Pier
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel – Mercury in Fish

Show 90, September 27, 2014: Sherry Yard, iPic Theaters and Helms Bakery Part One

Sherry YardThe incomparable Sherry Yard is a two-time James Beard Award-winner. Her Beard Foundation honors are for both her acclaimed dessert and pastry book as well as for Outstanding Pastry Chef. The Princess of Pastry joins us to chat about the upcoming C-CAP’s Sweet & Savory Spectacular benefit, iPic Theaters, and the soon-to-be Helms Bakery in Los Angeles.

Sherry is the honorary co-chair (with Suzanne Goin of Lucques, A.O.C. and Tavern) of C-CAP’s Sweet & Savory Spectacular Benefit set for Sunday Afternoon, Oct.,19th at The Art Institute’s campus in Santa Monica just above the airport. Both of Sherry’s current projects, iPic Theaters and Helms Bakery, will be serving distinctive tastes from their menus. Sherry serves on the Los Angeles Advisory Board of the Careers through Culinary Arts Program as well as on the National Board.

C-CAP provides at-risk high school students with culinary arts training. The best-of-the-best of these students compete for culinary scholarships to the top schools. In Los Angeles alone some $600,000 is scholarships were awarded this year! These promising students are the career hospitality people of tomorrow.

At the “Sweet & Savory Spectacular” Sherry will be serving her signature, from-scratch Naan-chos from iPic and the OMG cookie from Helms Bakery. Yum…

Play

September 6: Andrew Gruel, Carolyne Styne, McConnell’s Ice Cream, Michelle Winner, Melissa’s Produce, Geeta Bansal, 12 Bottle Bar

Podcasts

Segment One: Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel and Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris preview the show
Segment Two: LA Loves Alex’s Lemonade
Segment Three: McConnell’s Fine Ice Cream
Segment Four: Travel Writer Michelle Winner, President, IFWTWA
Segment Five: Corporate Chef Ida Rodriguez, Melissa’s Produce
Segment Six: Executive Chef Andrew Gruel
Segment Seven: Chef Geeta Bansal of Clay Oven
Segment Eight: The 12 Bottle Bar

Guest Host Executive Chef Andrew Gruel, CEO of Slapfish Restaurant Group and Producer Andy Harris preview the show.

The 5th Annual L.A. Loves Alex’s Lemonade culinary cookout returns this year on Saturday, September 20th. When it comes to having the most impressive roster of nationally-known celebrity chefs cooking locally for charity this Benefit is the clear standout. It’s hosted by Chef Suzanne Goin, her business partner Caroline Styne (Lucques, A.O.C., Tavern) along with Chef David Lentz (The Hungry Cat.)

McConnell’s Fine Ice Cream is a 70-year old iconic brand of super premium ice cream which is still based where it was founded in Santa Barbara. Michael Palmer (winemaker) and his wife Eva Ein (chef) purchased this heritage brand in 2012. A McConnell’s scoop shop recently opened in the Grand Central Market in Downtown Los Angeles.

Food, wine & travel writer Michelle Winner is the President of the International Food, Wine & Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA.). She will be talking to us from Hawaii. Over Labor Day Weekend she was part of the Kaanapali Fresh – A Culinary Experience on Maui and right now she is in the middle of the 4th Annual Hawaii Food & Wine Festival on Oahu.

Ida Rodriguez is the long-time Corporate Chef for Melissa’s / World Variety Produce. Until the end of the month it’s Hatch Chile season. Over Labor Day Weekend Chef Ida was in Hatch, New Mexico for the annual Hatch Chile Festival. It gets crazy there. Chef Ida is with us to give us the flavorful report.

Executive Chef Andrew Gruel is CEO of Slapfish Restaurant Group with locations in Huntington Beach, Laguna, Dubai, and soon – Newport Beach. Chef Andrew is a guest judge on Food Network’s upcoming “Food Truck Face-Off” series, was a participant on Sept. 5th at OC Weekly’s 11th Annual Decadence 2014 Tasting Event, and has a new video our explaining the secrets of preparing Slapfish’s Clobster Roll to the Orange County Register’s distinguished food writer, Cathy Thomas.

It’s a singular honor as a chef & restaurateur to be invited to prepare and present a meal at The James Beard Foundation in New York. Chef Geeta Bansal of Clay Oven has that distinct honor on September 27th. On Monday, Sept. 15th Clay Oven will be previewing that same grand five-course, wine-paired menu for a small group of lucky locals. Not one to miss…

David Solmonson and Lesley Jacobs Solmonson have penned a new kind of cocktail book, The 12 Bottle Bar. Just twelve bottles create over 200 distinct and seasonal cocktails, including beer and wine cocktails. When we first interviewed the Solmonsons we ran out of time before we could discuss the clever “Acknowledgements” section of their book. We’ll resume the conversation…

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

Caroline StyneThe 5th Annual L.A. Loves Alex’s Lemonade culinary cookout returns this year on Saturday, September 20th. When it comes to having the most impressive roster of nationally-known celebrity chefs cooking locally for charity this Benefit is the clear standout. It’s hosted by Chef Suzanne Goin, her business partner Caroline Styne (Lucques, A.O.C., Tavern) along with Chef David Lentz (The Hungry Cat.)

The new location is Wilson Plaza at UCLA in Westwood.

The 5th Annual Benefit invites food and wine lovers from all corners of the globe for an afternoon of fantastic fare, cocktails for a cause, children’s activities, silent and live auctions, and a whole lot more. The incredible chef brigade includes big name cooks ranging from Giada De Laurentiis to Tom Colicchio.

Michael PalmerMcConnell’s Fine Ice Cream is a 70-year old iconic brand of super premium ice cream which is still based where it was founded in Santa Barbara. Michael Palmer (winemaker) and his wife Eva Ein (chef) purchased this heritage brand in 2012. A McConnell’s scoop shop recently opened in the Grand Central Market in Downtown Los Angeles.

The late Jim McCoy owned McConnell’s from 1963 until he needed to sell the business due to ill health in 2012. It was very important to him that this be maintained as a family business based in Santa Barbara.That was his legacy.

75 per cent of McConnell’s ingredients come from within 60 miles of Santa Barbara.

Food, wine & travel writer Michelle Winner is the President of the International Food, Wine & Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA.). She will be talking to us from Hawaii.

Over Labor Day Weekend Michelle was part of the Kaanapali Fresh – A Culinary Experience on Maui and right now she is in the middle of the 4th Annual Hawaii Food & Wine Festival on Oahu.

The Hawaii Food & Wine Festival event Michelle attended Thursday evening was the sold out “A Lucky Modern Buddha Belly” at The Modern Honolulu. The event put a spotlight on Hawaii’s unique location as a culinary hub of the Pacific where East Meets West. 14 esteemed chefs (including Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto) showcased dishes inspired by the Lucky Buddha who is known for happiness, plenitude, and wisdom of contentment.

Chef Ida Rodriquez of Melissas World Variety ProduceIda Rodriguez is the long-time Corporate Chef for Melissa’s / World Variety Produce. Until the end of the month it’s still Hatch Chile season.

Over Labor Day Weekend Chef Ida was in Hatch, New Mexico as a participant for the annual Hatch Chile Festival. It gets really crazy there. Chef Ida joins us to give us the flavorful chile report.

Weekend Hatch chile roasting continue through this month at select supermarkets. Check the Melissa’s website for the schedule, times, and locations.

Andrew GruelExecutive Chef Andrew Gruel is CEO of Slapfish Restaurant Group with locations in Huntington Beach, Laguna, Dubai, and soon – Newport Beach.

Chef Andrew is a guest judge on Food Network’s upcoming “Food Truck Face-Off” series, was a participant on Sept. 5th at OC Weekly’s 11th Annual Decadence 2014 Tasting Event, and has a new video out explaining the secrets of preparing Slapfish’s Clobster Roll to the Orange County Register’s distinguished food writer, Cathy Thomas.

Geeta Bansal of Clay Oven in IrvineIt’s a singular honor as a chef & restaurateur to be invited to prepare and present a meal at The James Beard Foundation in New York. Wolfgang Puck was the very first chef to do so.

Chef Geeta Bansal of Clay Oven has that distinct honor on Saturday evening, September 27th. On Monday, Sept. 15th Clay Oven will be previewing that same grand five-course, wine-paired menu for a small group of lucky locals. Not one to miss…

At Clay Oven, chef/owner Geeta Bansal updates traditional Indian recipes with modern culinary techniques and vibrant California bounty. Incorporating the changing colors, flavors, and aromas of each season into her rotating menus, she honors Ayurvedic principles while bringing haute Indian cuisine to the forefront of Southern California’s dining landscape.

David and Lesley Jacobs SolmonsonDavid Solmonson and Lesley Jacobs Solmonson have penned a new kind of cocktail book, The 12 Bottle Bar. Just twelve bottles create over 200 distinct and seasonal cocktails, including beer and wine cocktails. When we first interviewed the Solmonsons we ran out of time before we could discuss the clever “Acknowledgements” section of their book. We’ll resume the conversation…

On Saturday, September 13th at 10:30 a.m. the Solmonsons will present “Sin and the Silver Screen: The Age of the Hollywood Nightclub.” It’s a free program in the Mark Taper Auditorium at the Los Angeles Central Library.

To celebrate the release of The 12 Bottle Bar the Solmonsons will lead two Los Angeles-based barhops in September (Sept. 7th ) and October (Oct.5th.,) each one stopping at three bars over one evening. Each event includes one spirit-focused mini-cocktail at each location, appetizers/small plates, a copy of The 12 Bottle Bar book, and more!

Podcasts

Segment One: Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel and Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris preview the show
Segment Two: LA Loves Alex’s Lemonade
Segment Three: McConnell’s Fine Ice Cream
Segment Four: Travel Writer Michelle Winner, President, IFWTWA
Segment Five: Corporate Chef Ida Rodriguez, Melissa’s Produce
Segment Six: Executive Chef Andrew Gruel
Segment Seven: Chef Geeta Bansal of Clay Oven
Segment Eight: The 12 Bottle Bar

Show 60, February 8, 2013: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris

Chef Jet and Producer Andy preview the show.

Valentine’s Day is next week so get moving and don’t panic. It falls on a Friday this year. Friday is an especially tough day for restaurants due to Valentine’s Day anxiety so if you want to be a bit more relaxed make your plans for Saturday or Sunday instead. Still the Valentine’s Day orbit but a bit less crazed for the restaurant. You’ll definitely have better service…

Chef jet Tila and Alton BrownFood Network’s “Cutthroat Kitchen” with host Alton Brown is back on Sunday nights for Season 2. Our own Chef Jet Tila is the most frequently appearing solo judge on this tough competition show that requires strategy as well as cooking chops. Look for Jet’s new episodes starting in February.

It’s the Winter Olympics in Sochi and a classic Newport Beach restaurant is serving a special Olympics-themed menu for the duration. We’ll go inside the menu with the creative executive chef. Caroline Styne is the partner and Wine Director (with Chef Suzanne Goin) in Lucques, A.O.C. and Tavern in West Hollywood and Los Angeles. We’ll talk with her and get insight on how you keep a firmly established and growing restaurant group fresh for the dining public. We’ll also hear the story of Slapfish which started as a modest food truck and now is a growing international empire. Did you know there is an emerging wine region in Northern Baja? You’ll learn about a promising winery in the Guadalupe Valley founded by Italians. Brad A. Johnson, the restaurant critic for The Orange County Register, joins us to talk about letter grades for restaurants. We’ll also have a visit with travel journalist Linda Kissam, who was recently in Spain touring the wineries representing the 50 best Cavas produced there.

All of that and lots more incredible deliciousness on the “SoCal Restaurant Show.”

Play

Show 60, February 8, 2013: Caroline Styne, Wine Director and Partner, Lucques, A.O.C., The Tavern, and The Larder

Caroline StyneCaroline Styne had an extensive background in specialty food products, catering, and restaurant management before partnering with Chef Suzanne Goin to open Lucques in 1988. In December of 2002, Goin & Styne opened their second restaurant, A.O.C., where the concept of small plates and fifty wines by the glass was born out of their shared passion for going out and sampling a variety of appetizers and intriguing wines. A.O.C. relocated to the face-lifted former Orso space about a mile West on 3rd Street in late 2012. Styne is the Wine Director for all the restaurants.

Tavern, in Brentwood, followed in May of 2009. It offers fine dining all day along with The Larder which has gourmet prepared foods and packaged goods. There is a new Larder at Burton Way in the luxury 8500 Burton Way Apartments on the border of L.A. and Beverly Hills as well as at LAX.

Styne contributed the helpful wine notes to Suzanne’s The A.O.C. Cookbook.

“And because wine and cheese are at the heart of A.O.C. there are two exciting additions. Caroline Styne presents a specific wine pairing for each dish. Styne explains why each varietal works well with the ingredients and which flavors she’s trying to highlight, and she gives you room to experiment as well – showing how to shape the wine to your own palate. Whether you’re just grabbing a glass to go with dinner or planning an entire menu, her expert notes are a real education in wine.”

Play

February 8: Caroline Styne, San Antonio Winery, Andrew Gruel, Brad A. Johnson, Paul Gstrein, Linda Kissam

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Caroline Styne, Wine Director and Partner, Lucques, A.O.C., The Tavern, and The Larder
Segment Three: Allan Stark, San Antonio Winery, Los Angeles
Segment Four: Andrew Gruel, Executive Chef & Partner, Slapfish
Segment Five: Brad A. Johnson, Restaurant Critic, Orange County Register
Segment Six: Paul Gstrein, Executive Chef, Bayside Restaurant
Segment Seven: Linda Kissam, Food, Wine & Travel Journalist, 1st Vice President, IFWTWA
Segment Eight: Jet Tila on Manhattan Dining

Chef Jet and Producer Andy preview the show.

Valentine’s Day is next week so get moving and don’t panic. It falls on a Friday this year. Friday is an especially tough day for restaurants due to Valentine’s Day anxiety so if you want to be a bit more relaxed make your plans for Saturday or Sunday instead. Still the Valentine’s Day orbit but a bit less crazed for the restaurant. You’ll definitely have better service…

Chef jet Tila and Alton BrownFood Network’s “Cutthroat Kitchen” with host Alton Brown is back on Sunday nights for Season 2. Our own Chef Jet Tila is the most frequently appearing solo judge on this tough competition show that requires strategy as well as cooking chops. Look for Jet’s new episodes starting in February.

It’s the Winter Olympics in Sochi and a classic Newport Beach restaurant is serving a special Olympics-themed menu for the duration. We’ll go inside the menu with the creative executive chef. Caroline Styne is the partner and Wine Director (with Chef Suzanne Goin) in Lucques, A.O.C. and Tavern in West Hollywood and Los Angeles. We’ll talk with her and get insight on how you keep a firmly established and growing restaurant group fresh for the dining public. We’ll also hear the story of Slapfish which started as a modest food truck and now is a growing international empire. Did you know there is an emerging wine region in Northern Baja? You’ll learn about a promising winery in the Guadalupe Valley founded by Italians. Brad A. Johnson, the restaurant critic for The Orange County Register, joins us to talk about letter grades for restaurants. We’ll also have a visit with travel journalist Linda Kissam, who was recently in Spain touring the wineries representing the 50 best Cavas produced there.

All of that and lots more incredible deliciousness on the “SoCal Restaurant Show.”

Caroline StyneCaroline Styne had an extensive background in specialty food products, catering, and restaurant management before partnering with Chef Suzanne Goin to open Lucques in 1988. In December of 2002, Goin & Styne opened their second restaurant, A.O.C., where the concept of small plates and fifty wines by the glass was born out of their shared passion for going out and sampling a variety of appetizers and intriguing wines. A.O.C. relocated to the face-lifted former Orso space about a mile West on 3rd Street in late 2012. Styne is the Wine Director for all the restaurants.

Tavern, in Brentwood, followed in May of 2009. It offers fine dining all day along with The Larder which has gourmet prepared foods and packaged goods. There is a new Larder at Burton Way in the luxury 8500 Burton Way Apartments on the border of L.A. and Beverly Hills as well as at LAX.

Styne contributed the helpful wine notes to Suzanne’s The A.O.C. Cookbook.

“And because wine and cheese are at the heart of A.O.C. there are two exciting additions. Caroline Styne presents a specific wine pairing for each dish. Styne explains why each varietal works well with the ingredients and which flavors she’s trying to highlight, and she gives you room to experiment as well – showing how to shape the wine to your own palate. Whether you’re just grabbing a glass to go with dinner or planning an entire menu, her expert notes are a real education in wine.”

LA Cetto WinesDid you know there is a burgeoning wine industry in Mexico? Finally some of these affordable wines are finding their way into the United States. Shouldn’t a fine Mexican restaurant also offer premium Mexican wines?

One of the premier grape growing areas of Mexico is in the Guadalupe Valley (and adjacent valleys) located in Northern Baja California. It has the rural feel of the flat areas of Sonoma County from 40 years ago.

The predecessor wine interests of L.A. Cetto were established in Baja by Italians in the late 1920s. In 1960 L.A. Cetto acquired their first vineyards in the Guadalupe Valley. Today they have some 2,500 acres in the Valley under the stewardship of the 3rd generation of the Baja-based Cetto Family. They are the largest producer of table wines in Mexico.

L.A’s own San Antonio Winery (dating to 1917) is the distributor of L.A. Cetto wines in Southern California. Allan Stark, a 25-year veteran of San Antonio Winery joins us to tell the L.A. Cetto story and discuss some of their premium reserve wines including Nebbiolo, Chardonnay, and a Brut Sparkling wine.

Andrew GruelFood trucks have proven to be a worthwhile testing ground for innovative food concepts. A great example is Slapfish with a limited service, fast-casual restaurant in Huntington Beach located in a strip center. A new Laguna Beach location will launch later this year.

The partners started with one food truck serving the OC in 2009. By 2011 they had three trucks serving both Los Angeles and Orange Counties.

Executive Chef Andrew Gruel is with us to fill us in on the Slapfish tale. They have just signed a franchise agreement to open 75 full service restaurants in the Middle East over the next 5 to 7 years.

They like to characterize Slapfish as a modern seafood shack. It’s a real American seafood experience that revolves around fresh, sustainable fish, prepared simply, but delivering big flavors.

Letter Grades at RestaurantsLast month The Orange County Register’s James Beard Award-winning restaurant critic, Brad A. Johnson, was looking to review a Newport Beach restaurant. Instead all of the members of his dining group came down with severe cases of food poisoning. When Brad checked the Health Department records of this restaurant he was surprised to learn that they had received a serious violation on each of their previous inspections since they opened two years ago.

Brad is with us to discuss his campaign for Orange County restaurants to receive Letter Grades as a result of their Health Department inspections as is practice in Los Angeles County and other areas of California.

The Winter Olympics in Sochi is underway. Russia is on peoples’ minds.

Paul Gstrein of Bayside RestaurantPaul Gstrein, the long-time (Austria-born) executive chef at Bayside Restaurant in Newport Beach has been inspired by Russia, too. For the duration of the Games Paul will be featuring Russian dishes as appetizers, entrees, and even desserts. How about Beef Short Rib Borscht and Berkshire Pork Tenderloin Stroganoff?

Please note that not every appetizer or entrée on the special Russian menu will be available each night.

Linda KissamThe very well-traveled Linda Kissam is a respected food, wine, and travel writer who is on the go most of the time. She serves as the 1st Vice President of the International Food, Wine and Travel Writers Association. She is also an author and the Global Wine & Travel Editor-at-Large for Luxe Beat Magazine.

Late last year Linda was invited to Spain to tour the Penedes wine region, the heart of cava sparkling wine production. Her mission was to taste and evaluate 50 fine cavas over an intensive five day period. Linda shares the highlights of this very special experience with us.

Le BernardinChef Jet has been in New York twice over the last two weeks and has enjoyed some standout dining adventures along the way. Jet shares the details of his truly exquisite meal at the classic Le Bernardin. It’s expertly prepared French seafood from Chef Eric Ripert at a very high level.

Jet also visited Ippudo, a well-known Japanese ramen shop.

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Caroline Styne, Wine Director and Partner, Lucques, A.O.C., The Tavern, and The Larder
Segment Three: Allan Stark, San Antonio Winery, Los Angeles
Segment Four: Andrew Gruel, Executive Chef & Partner, Slapfish
Segment Five: Brad A. Johnson, Restaurant Critic, Orange County Register
Segment Six: Paul Gstrein, Executive Chef, Bayside Restaurant
Segment Seven: Linda Kissam, Food, Wine & Travel Journalist, 1st Vice President, IFWTWA
Segment Eight: Jet Tila on Manhattan Dining

Show 50, November 30, 2013: Chef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin of Lucques, A.O.C. and Tavern

Suzanne GoinChef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin is true culinary royalty in Los Angeles. She has just published her second cookbook, the A.O.C. Cookbook. It was a two year process as she actually does the writing.

Suzanne, a Los Angeles native, is the recipient of the prestigious James Beard Award for Outstanding Chef: California (2006) and is a multiple past nominee. She worked for Alice Waters at Chez Panisse earlier in her career. Closer to home her final position at Campanile (now closed) in Hollywood (before going out on her own) was as executive chef.

Suzanne partnered with sommelier, Caroline Styne, to open Lucques in West Hollywood in 1998. That was followed by A.O.C. in 2002. Next was Tavern and The Larder in Brentwood. The President has dined at Tavern. The newest Larder is The Larder on Burton Way on the ground floor of the luxury apartment building from the developer of The Grove.

A new Larder is soon to open in January at The Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport.

A goal of the new cookbook is to make vegetables delicious and, in our opinion, Suzanne handily succeeds. A.O.C., a personal favorite of Chef Jet’s, is all about what’s fresh right now. That’s Suzanne’s daily inspiration.

Suzanne is also influenced by the flavors of Mexico and India.

Play

November 30, Suzanne Goin, Griffin Hammond, Robert Wemischner, Pascal Olhats, Gavin Kaysen, David LeFevre

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin of Lucques, A.O.C. and Tavern Part One
Segment Three: Chef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin of Lucques, A.O.C. and Tavern Part Two
Segment Four: Griffin Hammond, of “Sriracha – a documentary by Griffin Hammond.”
Segment Five: Chef Instructor Robert Wemischner of L.A. Trade-Tech College
Segment Six: Pascal Olhats, owner/chef of Pascal Epicerie, Brasserie Pascal, and Café Jardin
Segment Seven: Gavin Kaysen, Executive Chef and Director of Culinary Operations for Café Boulud
Segment Eight: David LeFevre, Executive Chef & Partner of MB Post and Fishing with Dynamite

We hope you’re all enjoying the extended Thanksgiving Weekend. Remember to give us a listen along the way on Saturday morning…

As we complete our 14th month on the air with the “SoCal Restaurant Show” with Jet Tila we want to again thank our loyal listeners and sponsors for their enthusiasm and support. We wouldn’t be here without you and we never forget that.

Thanks to positive listener feedback Jet has a new segment on Friday morning. Be sure to tune in Friday mornings at 7:50 a.m. for “What’s Cooking with Travis and Chef Jet Tila” on the “Travis Rodgers Show.” Jet talks with Travis about food and cooking from the dude’s perspective. It’s on the lighter side and you won’t hear this AM 830 KLAA exclusive feature elsewhere.

Chef Jet and Producer Andy preview the show.

Suzanne GoinChef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin is true culinary royalty in Los Angeles. She has just published her second cookbook, the A.O.C. Cookbook. It was a two year process.

Suzanne is the recipient of the James Beard Award for Outstanding Chef: California (2006) and is a multiple past nominee. She worked for Alice Waters at Chez Panisse earlier in her career. Her final position at Campanile (now closed) in Hollywood (before going out on her own) was as executive chef.

Suzanne partnered with sommelier, Caroline Styne, to open Lucques in West Hollywood in 1998. That was followed by A.O.C. in 2002. Next was Tavern and The Larder in Brentwood. The President has dined at Tavern.

A new Larder is soon to open in January at The Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport.

A.O.C. CookbookSuzanne talks about cooking with seasonal vegetables and how that passion of hers found its way into the A.O.C. Cookbook.

She feels it’s very important to balance flavors which you only learn by tasting.

All the recipes in the cookbook were tested in a home kitchen by an enthusiastic home cook.

Suzanne’s long-time business partner, Caroline Styne, has wonderfully informative wine notes that go with each recipe in the book.

A.O.C. (the restaurant) has recently moved a mile West to the old Orso location on W. Third Street across from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Suzanne shares how the move came about.

Griffin HammondGriffin Hammond is a respected documentary filmmaker. He’s just completed his fascinating film on Sriracha. This documentary has taken him to Southern California on multiple occasions and even to Thailand where Sriracha originated. In Thailand the people are amazed that Sriracha is a popular condiment in the United States.

Griffin financed this unusual documentary via an incredibly successful Kickstarter campaign that was actually oversubscribed.

Robert WemischnerChef Instructor Robert Wemischner is a mainstay in the Baking Department at L.A. Trade Tech in Downtown Los Angeles. He’s also an accomplished pastry chef and author. The Dessert Architect is his most recent title.

Chef Bob shares his holiday dessert ideas for using fresh pomegranates, persimmons, and (the underappreciated) quince.

Pascal OlhatsThe Dean of French Chefs in Orange County is the ever charming Pascal Olhats of the Pascal Epicerie in Newport Beach. This is located next door to the site of his long-running Traditions by Pascal fine dining restaurant which he sold last year. Pascal originally came to Orange County in 1984 to open Hotel Le Meridian in Newport Beach. The property is now the Fairmont Newport Beach. Earlier in his career he worked for Master Chef Paul Bocuse (a French culinary legend) in Lyon.

In Newport Beach Pascal also operates Brasserie Pascal in Fashion Island and Café Jardin.

Pascal talks about a new fundraising effort he’s putting together to benefit the Orange County Food Bank.

How the French celebrate the Christmas meal is also part of the conversation.

Gavin kaysenGavin Kaysen is the greatly respected Executive Chef and Director of Culinary Operations for Daniel Boulud’s Café Boulud in New York, Palm Beach and Toronto.

He put previously San Diego on the national culinary map during his much-praised tenure at El Bizcocho at the Rancho Bernardo Inn. Fortunately for us he finds his way back to SoCal periodically to cook at fundraisers.

In his spare time he’s the Head Coach for Bocuse d’Or Team USA 2015. Chef Gavin has completed in this prestigious International Culinary Olympics and explains what the level of competition is all about. It’s a year of rigorous practice. Go Team USA in 2015!

Charlie TrotterEarlier in the month the food world lost Chef Charlie Trotter who was the first superstar celebrity chef in Chicago and influenced a network of young chefs. Charlie Trotter’s (the restaurant) on W. Armitage was known to foodies around the world for his innovative tasting menus and brilliant wine cellar.

Our own David LeFevre, the executive chef & partner of both MB Post and Fishing with Dynamite in Manhattan Beach worked for Charlie over a period of ten years in a couple of stints. David joins us to share memories of the real Charlie Trotter. Fortunately his legacy will live on.

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin of Lucques, A.O.C. and Tavern Part One
Segment Three: Chef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin of Lucques, A.O.C. and Tavern Part Two
Segment Four: Griffin Hammond, of “Sriracha – a documentary by Griffin Hammond.”
Segment Five: Chef Instructor Robert Wemischner of L.A. Trade-Tech College
Segment Six: Pascal Olhats, owner/chef of Pascal Epicerie, Brasserie Pascal, and Café Jardin
Segment Seven: Gavin Kaysen, Executive Chef and Director of Culinary Operations for Café Boulud
Segment Eight: David LeFevre, Executive Chef & Partner of MB Post and Fishing with Dynamite