Show 282, July 21, 2018: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris

Now an enticing preview of 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, upon careful reflection, that’s probably a pretty good thing…

The OC Fair (Free Your Inner Farmer) is in full swing now through August 12th (Wednesday through Sunday) in Costa Mesa. Time to talk about what’s new in Fair Food with The Midway Gourmet himself, Chef Dominic Palmieri. Think Caramel Crack Fries…

America’s foremost hamburger expert, George Motz, returns to the show. The 3rd edition of Hamburger America – A State-By-State Guide to 200 Great Burger Joints is now out. It’s completely revised and expanded.

Located in Glendale, BOURBON STEAK Los Angeles is Chef Michael Mina’s modern American steakhouse offering timeless dining experiences. At once classic and contemporary, the restaurant accomplishes all the traditions expected from a steakhouse with a flair of excitement. We’re firing up the broiler with Executive Chef Kyle Johnson.

Hidden in plain sight on the lower level of the Anaheim Packing House is the full-service Urbana Mexican Gastronomy. Its ‘Dia de los Muertos’ every day at URBANA, the Anaheim Packing House’s most colorful restaurant. Farm Fresh Mexican inspired plates are created by Chef Ernie Alvarado. Complementing the menu, URBANA’S sexy departure on craft cocktails featuring Tequila and Mezcal favorites as well as top shelf agave spirits. Proprietor Javier Cuadra is our guest.

Every Thursday from Noon to 6:00 p.m. Downtown Los Angeles’ historic Union Station’s South Patio is transformed into a bustling marketplace showcasing a diverse selection of SoCal’s farmers, artisans, crafters and culinary creations. The just launched Train-to-Table Farmers Market serves as an idyllic location for lunchtime small bites and drop-in shopping in the heart of this iconic landmark. Our guide is Ken Pratt, deputy executive officer real estate, Union Station Operations and Management.

Eat your heart out Long Beach! DINE LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week returns August 4 to 12, 2018. Experience cuisine that delights the palate and defines the art of dining in Long Beach. Held annually, Dine LBC features value-oriented two or three course menus from dozens of Long Beach’s best restaurants in twelve unique neighborhoods throughout the city. <strong>The Attic on Broadway (with a Southern flair and potent libations) is one of the participating restaurants. We’ll meet proprietor Steve Massis.

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness on this week’s not-to-miss show!

Play

Show 282, July 21, 2018: Javier Cuadra, Owner & Founder, Urbana Mexican Gastronomy, Anaheim Packing House

Javier CuadraHidden in plain sight on the lower level of the Anaheim Packing House is the full-service Urbana Mexican Gastronomy. Its ‘Dia de los Muertos’ every day at URBANA, the Anaheim Packing House’s most colorful restaurant.

Farm Fresh Mexican inspired plates are created by Chef Ernie Alvarado. Complementing the menu, URBANA’S sexy departure on craft cocktails featuring Tequila and Mezcal favorites as well as top shelf agave spirits.

“Restaurateur Javier Cuadra was raised between Orange County and Michoacan, “the belly” of Mexico. Michoacan boasts an abundance of culture and delectable street foods which influenced Javier into opening a restaurant shacking the region’s finest offerings.”

“I always had a passion for food, while going to college for international business I worked in the restaurant industry and this inspired me to have my own one day. Experiencing the unique cuisine that Mexico has to offer and seeing how there was nothing like that in Orange County inspired me to bring a small piece of Mexican culture here.”

Javier’s love of “street food” has heavily influenced URBANA’s eclectic menu, which features natural and fresh ingredients including handmade tortillas, gourmet tacos and Red Snapper ceviche, creatively prepared by Chef Ernie Alvarado. “My personal favorite are the Mole enchiladas, made with house made Mole sauce that reminds me of home.” says Javier.

Located in the Anaheim Packing House, the candle-lit ambience has earned Golden Foodie Award honors among other recognitions, “The fact that together with Chef Ernie Alvarado we were able to change how people see Mexican cuisine is a huge accomplishment.”

Proprietor Javier Cuadra is our in-studio guest.

Play

July 21: Midway Gourmet, George Motz, Bourbon Steak, Urbana Mexican Gastronomy, The Attic on Broadway, Union Station Farmers Market

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef Dominic Palmieri, The Midway Gourmet, OC Fair
Segment Three: Burger Authority George Motz, 3rd Edition of Hamburger America
Segment Four: Executive Chef Kyle Johnson, Michael Mina’s Bourbon Steak Los Angeles
Segment Five: Javier Cuadra, Owner & Founder, Urbana Mexican Gastronomy, Anaheim Packing House
Segment Six: Train-to-Table Farmers Market at Union Station DTLA
Segment Seven: Steve Massis, Proprietor, The Attic, Long Beach Part One
Segment Eight: Steve Massis, Proprietor, The Attic, Long Beach Part Two

Now an enticing 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, upon careful reflection, that’s probably a pretty good thing…

The OC Fair (Free Your Inner Farmer) is in full swing now through August 12th (Wednesday through Sunday) in Costa Mesa. Time to talk what’s new in Fair Food with The Midway Gourmet himself, Chef Dominic Palmieri. Think Caramel Crack Fries…

America’s foremost hamburger expert, George Motz, returns to the show. The 3rd edition of Hamburger America – A State-By-State Guide to 200 Great Burger Joints is now out. It’s completely revised and expanded.

Located in Glendale, BOURBON STEAK Los Angeles is Chef Michael Mina’s modern American steakhouse offering timeless dining experiences. At once classic and contemporary, the restaurant accomplishes all the traditions expected from a steakhouse with a flair of excitement. We’re firing up the broiler with Executive Chef Kyle Johnson.

Hidden in plain sight on the lower level of the Anaheim Packing House is the full-service Urbana Mexican Gastronomy. Its ‘Dia de los Muertos’ every day at URBANA, the Anaheim Packing House’s most colorful restaurant. Farm Fresh Mexican inspired plates are created by Chef Ernie Alvarado. Complementing the menu, URBANA’S sexy departure on craft cocktails featuring Tequila and Mezcal favorites as well as top shelf agave spirits. Proprietor Javier Cuadra is our guest.

Every Thursday from Noon to 6:00 p.m. Downtown Los Angeles’ historic Union Station’s South Patio is transformed into a bustling marketplace showcasing a diverse selection of SoCal’s farmers, artisans, crafters and culinary creations. The just launched Train-to-Table Farmers Market serves as an idyllic location for lunchtime small bites and drop-in shopping in the heart of this iconic landmark. Our guide is Ken Pratt, deputy executive officer real estate, Union Station Operations and Management.

Eat your heart out Long Beach! DINE LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week returns August 4 to 12, 2018. Experience cuisine that delights the palate and defines the art of dining in Long Beach. Held annually, Dine LBC features value-oriented two or three course menus from dozens of Long Beach’s best restaurants in twelve unique neighborhoods throughout the city. The Attic on Broadway (with a Southern flair and potent libations) is one of the participating restaurants. We’ll meet proprietor Steve Massis.

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness on this week’s not-to-miss show!

Dominic Palmieri of Midway GourmetThe OC Fair (Free Your Inner Farmer) is in full swing now through August 12th (Wednesday through Sunday) in Costa Mesa. It’s a once-a-year thing, something that can only happen at the Fair – a food frenzy beyond compare.

Time to talk about what’s new in Fair Food with The Midway Gourmet himself, Chef Dominic Palmieri.

Think Caramel Crack Fries and on the savory side, Sriracha Turkey Leg.…

“You know you want it if it’s fried, wrapped in bacon or sprinkled with sugar!”

Last year 51 per cent of attendees surveyed said the only-at-the-Fair food was their favorite part of their visit. You just know the chefs have been laboring to move the needle even higher for 2018.

Is the OC Fair food crazier and more inventive this year? You be the judge.

George MotzAmerica’s foremost hamburger expert, George Motz, returns to the show. The 3rd edition of Hamburger America – A State-By-State Guide to 200 Great Burger Joints is now out. It’s completely revised and expanded. It features 50- brand new places from Coast-to-Coast to find the perfect burger.

Motz as made it his personal mission to preserve America’s hamburger heritage, and his travelogue spotlights the nation’s best roadside stands, nostalgic dinners, mon-n-pop shops, and college town favorites – all with George’s photographs and commentary throughout.

Whether you’re an armchair traveler, a serious connoisseur, or curious adventurer. Hamburger America is an essential resource for reclaiming this precious slice of Americana.

Kyle JohnsonLocated in Glendale, BOURBON STEAK Los Angeles is Chef Michael Mina’s modern American steakhouse offering timeless dining experiences. At once classic and contemporary, the restaurant accomplishes all the traditions expected from a steakhouse with a flair of excitement.

“Discover the Piano Bar abuzz with newfound libations, and the glamorous dining room boasting tableside services including our signature Japanese Whisky Cart and Michael Mina’s signature Lobster Pot Pie.”

Kyle Johnson has worked his way through some of Las Vegas’s finest restaurants and is now at Chef Michael Mina’s Bourbon Steak Los Angeles at The Americana at Brand as Executive Chef.  With his food philosophy focused on sourcing the highest quality ingredients prepared with a strong technique, he looks forward to cultivating a connection to the community. Through relationships with local farms and purveyors, he surprises guests with a locally influenced menu of modern steakhouse fare that’s sophisticated and approachable all at once.

We’re firing up the broiler with Executive Chef Kyle Johnson.

Javier CuadraHidden in plain sight on the lower level of the Anaheim Packing House is the full-service Urbana Mexican Gastronomy. Its ‘Dia de los Muertos’ every day at URBANA, the Anaheim Packing House’s most colorful restaurant.

Farm Fresh Mexican inspired plates are created by Chef Ernie Alvarado. Complementing the menu, URBANA’S sexy departure on craft cocktails featuring Tequila and Mezcal favorites as well as top shelf agave spirits.

“Restaurateur Javier Cuadra was raised between Orange County and Michoacan, “the belly” of Mexico. Michoacan boasts an abundance of culture and delectable street foods which influenced Javier into opening a restaurant shacking the region’s finest offerings.”

“I always had a passion for food, while going to college for international business I worked in the restaurant industry and this inspired me to have my own one day. Experiencing the unique cuisine that Mexico has to offer and seeing how there was nothing like that in Orange County inspired me to bring a small piece of Mexican culture here.

Javier’s love of “street food” has heavily influenced URBANA’s eclectic menu, which features natural and fresh ingredients including handmade tortillas, gourmet tacos and Red Snapper ceviche, creatively prepared by Chef Ernie Alvarado. “My personal favorite are the Mole enchiladas, made with house made Mole sauce that reminds me of home.” says Javier.

Located in the Anaheim Packing House, the candle-lit ambience has earned Golden Foodie Award honors among other recognitions, “The fact that together with Chef Ernie Alvarado we were able to change how people see Mexican cuisine is a huge accomplishment.”

Proprietor Javier Cuadra is our guest.

Ken PrattEvery Thursday from Noon to 6:00 p.m. Downtown Los Angeles’ historic Union Station’s South Patio is transformed into a bustling marketplace showcasing a diverse selection of SoCal’s farmers, artisans, crafters and culinary creations. The just launched Train-to-Table Farmers Market serves as an idyllic location for lunchtime small bites and drop-in shopping in the heart of this iconic landmark.

Union Station has partnered with California Certified Farmers Markets to bring the Train-to-Table Farmers Market to the historic venue, serving thousands of Metro travelers, downtown workers and residents every week.

“We are thrilled to offer this unique shopping experience in one of the most historic locations in Los Angeles,” said Ken Pratt, deputy executive officer real estate, Union Station Operations and Management. “Union Station has emerged as the gateway to the extraordinary renaissance in downtown Los Angeles, and the launch of the Train-to-Table Farmers Market is aligned with our ongoing efforts to deliver distinctive, new experiences in this remarkable public space.”

Playing to the strengths of the California climate, the historic South Patio opened in 1939 and was designed as a formal garden through which travelers (and often celebrities) exited the station. The expansive patio, featuring towering palm trees and an iconic 100-foot-tall clock tower, has evolved into a vibrant meeting place for Angelenos.

Our conductor is Ken Pratt, deputy executive officer real estate, Union Station Operations and Management.

Steve and Calvin MassisEat your heart out Long Beach! DINE LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week returns August 4 to 12, 2018. Experience cuisine that delights the palate and defines the art of dining in Long Beach. Held annually, Dine LBC features value-oriented two or three course menus from dozens of Long Beach’s best restaurants in twelve unique neighborhoods throughout the city.

The Attic on Broadway (with a distinct Southern flair and ample libations) is one of the participating restaurants.

“Enjoy fresh Southern cuisine with a Southern California twist!”

It’s Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner 7 days plus Weekend Brunch. Dog-friendly and seating inside the restored Craftsman bungalow or on 2 shaded patios.

We’ll meet hands-on proprietor Steve Massis.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef Dominic Palmieri, The Midway Gourmet, OC Fair
Segment Three: Burger Authority George Motz, 3rd Edition of Hamburger America
Segment Four: Executive Chef Kyle Johnson, Michael Mina’s Bourbon Steak Los Angeles
Segment Five: Javier Cuadra, Owner & Founder, Urbana Mexican Gastronomy, Anaheim Packing House
Segment Six: Train-to-Table Farmers Market at Union Station DTLA
Segment Seven: Steve Massis, Proprietor, The Attic, Long Beach Part One
Segment Eight: Steve Massis, Proprietor, The Attic, Long Beach Part Two

Show 163, March 12, 2016: Greg Nagel, Producer, FirkFest, OC Cask Beer Festival

Greg NagelIt’s 2016, which means it’s time to put on the wooden barrel pants, held up by suspenders. Firkfest 2016 is being planned for March 19, 2016, in Anaheim at Farmers Park, which is in-between the Packing House and Umami Burger.

From Event Producer Greg Nagel @OCBeerBlog:

“While standing in a 200 person line for a cask of Noble Ale Works Naughty Sauce at a beer festival this past summer, it dawned on me. Orange County needs a proper cask ale festival.”

“Expect fifty-ish casks from true craft beer makers. Brewers love the fest, the press loves the fest, and I’ve heard nothing but praise from guests. So buy your tickets early and tell a friend!”

“Why a cask ale festival? A cask is simply a vessel filled with liquid meant to be served within a day or so once tapped. Brewers fill the cask with beer for conditioning and then can treat it like a blank canvas; adding fresh hops, blending beers, adding tea/coffee or other creative ingredients. It’s a one-time shot to try something new and fun.”

This is an event that doesn’t over-sell tickets. There is a ceiling on admissions so everyone can comfortably move around. Lines are typically easy to navigate. Nice…

There are also a variety of compatible International foods available for purchase including nibbles from Adya.

Greg will tap one of the 50 plus casks for us and provide a full pour on all the thirst-quenching ingredients of Firkfest 3.0 supporting the OCBrewersGuild.

Play

Show 148, November 28, 2015: Show Preview with Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel and Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

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, soon, Brea, is back as today’s special Guest Host.

Happy Thanksgiving Weekend to all. We’re happily moving on from Turkey-Talk this morning…Thanks for joining us this busy Holiday Weekend and we promise no leftovers.

Next a tantalizing preview of Saturday’s high-energy and appropriately loaded show and not, with apologies, for dieters. If we’re doing it right we will always leave you hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a good thing…

The historic Holman Ranch and Vineyards dates back to 1928. Located at the north eastern tip of the Carmel Valley Appellation, the family-owned Holman Ranch resides approximately 12 miles inland from the Pacific Coast. Immersed in history and romance, the ranch has not only proven to be an excellent growing location for their vineyards but also for the Tuscan varietal olive trees which have flourished under the temperate climate. It’s also a one-of-a-kind executive retreat and special events venue. Guest Services Manager and Partner, Nick Elliott, joins us.

GMO foods are a hot button topic with consumers. After a lengthy approval process the Food and Drug Administration has approved a farm-raised, genetically-modified Atlantic Salmon for sale in the United States. Our resident seafood expert and Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel, weighs in with what you need to be aware of. Is it okay to eat and safe for the environment? The all-important Dungeness crab season has been delayed in California due to the presence of a toxic algae. This is a potential disaster in the making for California’s Dungeness crab fisherman. Chef Andrew will explain the unfortunate ramifications.

No one knows Indian food like our guest, Madhur Jaffrey. For more than forty years, the “godmother of Indian cooking” (The Independent on Sunday) has introduced Western home cooks to the vibrant cuisines of her homeland. Now, in Vegetarian India: A Journey Through the Best of Indian Home Cooking, the seven-time James Beard Award–winning author shares the delectable, healthful, vegetable- and grain-based foods enjoyed around the Indian subcontinent.

Since 1983, Rio Grill in Carmel, CA has been the place to meet friends, enjoy cocktails, food and wine and experience great dining on the Monterey Peninsula. The high energy restaurant is located at the mouth of the Carmel Valley in the well-known Crossroads Shopping Village and has won numerous reader’s choice awards and inspired food critics both near and far. Menu highlights include creative regional California cuisine from the wood-burning grill and oak wood burner, as well as Chef Cy Yontz’s daily creations which include fresh fish, pasta, salads and sandwiches. Rio Grill is now part of The Downtown Dining restaurants. Managing Partner Tony Tollner, who was part of the opening team for Rio Grill joins us.

CulinaryLab, under the direction of Chef Director Ryan Wagner, is a forward-focused cooking school where timeless techniques meet cutting edge curriculum and real-world training to cook up bold contemporary cuisine. CulinaryLab reinvents culinary training with a program that harnesses the power of today’s innovations to train tomorrow’s culinary arts visionaries. Orange County, California-based CulinaryLab (at The Anaheim Packing House) is the first school of its kind to combine an industry-fueled curriculum, tech-savvy training, hands-on learning, and a sustainable food philosophy. The first class starts in January of 2016. Chef Director Ryan Wagner is our guest.

Little Drummer Boy Cocktail by Dan TapiaThe first DINE LBC Long Beach Restaurant Week Holiday Cocktail Contest was held at The Sky Room’s Cielo rooftop lounge on November 15th. Five amateur finalists were selected (out of dozens of qualified entries) to create their concoctions in front of a panel of five thirsty judges. The cocktails were scored on the basis of Creativity of Ingredients, Taste/Flavor, Presentation and Likely to Order at The Sky Room. After careful deliberation the Judges’ decision for the First Place Winner was unanimous, and Dan Tapia, the creator of Little Drummer Boy, joins us.

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

Play

Show 148, November 28, 2015: Chef Director Ryan Wagner, Culinary Lab

Ryan Wagner of CulinaryLabCulinaryLab, under the direction of Chef Director Ryan Wagner, is a forward-focused cooking school where timeless techniques meet cutting edge curriculum and real-world training to cook up bold contemporary cuisine. CulinaryLab reinvents culinary training with a program that harnesses the power of today’s innovations to train tomorrow’s culinary arts visionaries.

Orange County, California-based CulinaryLab (at The Anaheim Packing House) is the first school of its kind to combine an industry-fueled curriculum, tech-savvy training, hands-on learning, and a sustainable food philosophy. The first class starts in January of 2016. The first class starts in January of 2016.

Chef Wagner is really big on presenting reality to future culinarians and tempering unrealistic expectations. A student doesn’t graduate from culinary school with the expectation that they are ready to be an Executive Chef anywhere. Also the idea that they are going to graduate and be a star on Food TV is even more unlikely!

Chef Director Ryan Wagner is our guest.

Play

November 28: Andrew Gruel, Holman Ranch and Vineyards, Madhur Jaffrey, Rio Grill, CulinaryLab OC, Dine LBC Holiday Cocktails

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel and Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Holman Ranch Vineyards & Will’s Fargo Steakhouse + Bar
Segment Three: GMO Salmon and Dungeness Crab with Chef Andrew Gruel
Segment Four: Madhur Jaffrey and Vegetarian India
Segment Five: Restaurateur Tony Tollner & Rio Grill, Carmel
Segment Six: Chef Director Ryan Wagner, Culinary Lab Part One
Segment Seven: Chef Director Ryan Wagner, Culinary Lab Part Two
Segment Eight: DINE LBC Holiday Cocktail Contest

Executive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, LAX, Irvine at UCI and, soon, Brea, is back as today’s special Guest Host.

Happy Thanksgiving Weekend to all. We’re happily moving on from Turkey-Talk this morning…Thanks for joining us this Holiday Weekend and we promise no leftovers.

Next a tantalizing preview of Saturday’s high-energy and appropriately loaded show and not, with apologies, for dieters. If we’re doing it right we will always leave you hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a good thing…

The historic Holman Ranch and Vineyards dates back to 1928. Located at the north eastern tip of the Carmel Valley Appellation, the family-owned Holman Ranch resides approximately 12 miles inland from the Pacific Coast. Immersed in history and romance, the ranch has not only proven to be an excellent growing location for their vineyards but also for the Tuscan varietal olive trees which have flourished under the temperate climate. It’s also a one-of-a-kind executive retreat and special events venue. Guest Services Manager and Partner, Nick Elliott, joins us.

GMO foods are a hot button topic with consumers. After a lengthy approval process the Food and Drug Administration has approved a farm-raised, genetically-modified Atlantic Salmon for sale in the United States. Our resident seafood expert and Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel, weighs in with what you need to be aware of. Is it okay to eat and safe for the environment ? The all-important Dungeness crab season has been delayed in California due to the presence of a toxic algae. This is a potential disaster in the making for California’s Dungeness crab fisherman. Chef Andrew will explain the unfortunate ramifications.

No one knows Indian food like our guest, Madhur Jaffrey. For more than forty years, the “godmother of Indian cooking” (The Independent on Sunday) has introduced Western home cooks to the vibrant cuisines of her homeland. Now, in Vegetarian India: A Journey Through the Best of Indian Home Cooking, the seven-time James Beard Award–winning author shares the delectable, healthful, vegetable- and grain-based foods enjoyed around the Indian subcontinent.

Since 1983, Rio Grill in Carmel, CA has been the place to meet friends, enjoy cocktails, food and wine and experience great dining on the Monterey Peninsula. The high energy restaurant is located at the mouth of the Carmel Valley in the well-known Crossroads Shopping Village and has won numerous reader’s choice awards and inspired food critics both near and far. Menu highlights include creative regional California cuisine from the wood-burning grill and oak wood burner, as well as Chef Cy Yontz’s daily creations which include fresh fish, pasta, salads and sandwiches. Rio Grill is now part of The Downtown Dining restaurants. Managing Partner Tony Tollner, who was part of the opening team for Rio Grill joins us.

CulinaryLab, under the direction of Chef Director Ryan Wagner, is a forward-focused cooking school where timeless techniques meet cutting edge curriculum and real-world training to cook up bold contemporary cuisine. CulinaryLab reinvents culinary training with a program that harnesses the power of today’s innovations to train tomorrow’s culinary arts visionaries. Orange County, California-based CulinaryLab (at The Anaheim Packing House) is the first school of its kind to combine an industry-fueled curriculum, tech-savvy training, hands-on learning, and a sustainable food philosophy. The first class starts in January of 2016. Chef Director Ryan Wagner is our guest.

The first DINE LBC Long Beach Restaurant Week Holiday Cocktail Contest was held at The Sky Room’s Cielo rooftop lounge on November 15th. Five amateur finalists were selected (out of dozens of qualified entries) to create their concoctions in front of a panel of five thirsty judges. The cocktails were scored on the basis of Creativity of Ingredients, Taste/Flavor, Presentation and Likely to Order at The Sky Room. After careful deliberation the Judges’ decision for the First Place Winner was unanimous, and Dan Tapia, the creator of Little Drummer Boy, joins us.

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

Nick Elliott of Holman Ranch and VineyardsThe historic 400-acre Holman Ranch and Vineyards dates back to 1928. Located at the north eastern tip of the Carmel Valley Appellation, the family-owned Holman Ranch resides approximately 12 miles inland from the Pacific Coast.

Immersed in history and romance, the ranch has not only proven to be an excellent growing location for their vineyards but also for the Tuscan varietal olive trees which have flourished under the temperate climate. It’s also a one-of-a-kind executive retreat and special events venue.

The Holman Ranch estate grown wine varietals are planted on approximately 19 acres of undulating terrain. The wines produced are unfiltered and crafted to deliver the true varietal of the grape from harvest to bottle. The estate wines include Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Rose of Pinot Noir. The Holman Ranch Vineyards Tasting Room is located near the Ranch on E. Carmel Valley Road in Carmel Valley.

The Holman Ranch also owns the nearby Wills Fargo Steakhouse + Bar on W. Carmel Valley Road. It’s been a local tradition since 1959. An evening at Will’s Fargo brings back a bygone era and offers some of the finest food on the Monterey Peninsula under the direction of long-time Executive Chef Jerome Viel.

Guest Services Manager and Partner, Nick Elliott, joins us.

Andrew Gruel at the AM830 KLAA StudiosGMO (genetically modified organism) foods are a hot button topic with consumers. After a lengthy approval process the Food and Drug Administration has approved a farm-raised, genetically-modified Atlantic Salmon for sale in the United States. Approval took a very long time. The salmon was developed by AquaBounty Technologies.

Our resident seafood expert and Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel, weighs in with what you need to be aware of. Is it okay to eat and safe for the environment ?

The all-important Dungeness crab season has been delayed in California due to the presence of a toxic algae. This is a potential disaster in the making for California’s Dungeness crab fisherman. Oregon and Washington have also postponed their crab seasons.

For right now we can only source the coveted, seasonal Dungeness crab from Alaska and Puget Sound. Chef Andrew will explain the unfortunate ramifications.

Madhur JaffreyNo one knows Indian food like our guest, Madhur Jaffrey. For more than forty years, the “godmother of Indian cooking” (The Independent on Sunday) has introduced Western home cooks to the vibrant cuisines of her homeland. Now, in Vegetarian India: A Journey Through the Best of Indian Home Cooking, the seven-time James Beard Award–winning author shares the delectable, healthful, vegetable- and grain-based foods enjoyed around the Indian subcontinent.

Vegetarian cooking is a way of life for more than 300 million Indians. Jaffrey travels from north to south, and from the Arabian Sea to the Bay of Bengal, collecting recipes for the very tastiest dishes along the way. She visits the homes and businesses of shopkeepers, writers, designers, farmers, doctors, weavers, and more, gathering their stories and uncovering the secrets of their most delicious family specialties.

From a sweet, sour, hot, salty Kodava Mushroom Curry with Coconut originating in the forested regions of South Karnataka to simple, crisp Okra Fries dusted with chili powder, turmeric, and chickpea flour; and from Stir-Fried Spinach, Andhra Style (with ginger, coriander, and cumin) to the mung bean pancakes she snacks on at a roadside stand, here Jaffrey brings together the very best of vegetable-centric Indian cuisine and explains how home cooks can easily replicate these dishes—and many more for beans, grains, and breads—in their own kitchens.

With more than two hundred recipes, beautifully illustrated throughout, and including personal photographs from Jaffrey’s own travels, Vegetarian India is a kitchen essential for vegetable enthusiasts and home cooks everywhere.

Madhur Jaffrey is the author of many previous cookbooks—six of which have won the James Beard Award—and was previously named to the Who’s Who of Food and Beverage in America by the James Beard Foundation. She is also an award-winning actress with numerous major motion pictures to her credit. She lives in New York City.

Tony TollnerSince 1983, Rio Grill in Carmel, CA has been the place to meet friends, enjoy cocktails, food and wine and experience great dining on the Monterey Peninsula. The high energy restaurant is located at the mouth of the Carmel Valley in the well-known Crossroads Shopping Village and has won numerous reader’s choice awards and inspired food critics both near and far.

Menu highlights include creative regional California cuisine from the wood-burning grill and oak wood burner, as well as Chef Cy Yontz’s daily creations which include fresh fish, pasta, salads and sandwiches.

A Carmel institution since 1983, Rio Grill has enjoyed a long and storied history. Originally the site of local restaurateur Bill Lee’s “Billy Quon’s”, Rio Grill officially opened its doors almost 32 years ago. At that time, Rio Grill was part of the Real Restaurants organization, and was affiliated with such world class restaurants as Mustard’s Grill and Tra Vigne in Napa Valley, and the Fog City Diner in San Francisco.

As part of the Real Restaurants group, Rio Grill staked its claim as one of the region’s most popular choices catering to a loyal local clientele while satisfying out of town guests. As Rio’s reputation grew, the partners of the Real Restaurants Group decided to part ways and Rio Grill was able to stand on its own.

Throughout the years, Rio Grill has continued to evolve. Expansion to the main dining room occurred on two occasions and most recently, Rio Grill completely rebuilt the Santé Fe Room, it’s special events and meeting space. Featuring an open beam ceiling and a built-in “cantina style” bar to complement an updated menu from Executive Chef Cy Yontz, Rio Grill is poised to continue to impress and satisfy both locals and tourists alike.

Rio Grill is now one of three properties owned by The Downtown Dining restaurants. Managing Partner Tony Tollner, who was part of the opening team for Rio Grill joins us.

Tony managed Rio Grill from 1984 until 1991 when he and his partner, Bill Cox found the building that now houses Tarpy’s Roadhouse. In 1994, a chef/friend approached Tony and asked if he would consider another venture. From that conversation, sprung the award winning Montrio Bistro. Montrio Bistro, along with Tarpy’s Roadhouse and Rio Grill comprise the Downtown Dining group of restaurants.

Ryan Wagner of CulinaryLabCulinaryLab, under the direction of Chef Director Ryan Wagner, is a forward-focused cooking school where timeless techniques meet cutting edge curriculum and real-world training to cook up bold contemporary cuisine. CulinaryLab reinvents culinary training with a program that harnesses the power of today’s innovations to train tomorrow’s culinary arts visionaries.

Orange County, California-based CulinaryLab (at The Anaheim Packing House) is the first school of its kind to combine an industry-fueled curriculum, tech-savvy training, hands-on learning, and a sustainable food philosophy. The first class starts in January of 2016. Chef Director Ryan Wagner is our guest.

CulinaryLab, under the direction of Chef Director Ryan Wagner, differs from other training programs in the region by offering an immersive, hands-on approach that not only includes 28 weeks of professional chef-led training, but also incorporates an apprenticeship in a restaurant kitchen alongside some of Orange County’s most noted chefs. Local Chef Partners currently include Mark McDonald, Chef/Owner of Old Vine CaféCarlos Salgado, Chef/Owner of Taco MariaJason Quinn, Chef/Owner of Playground; Peter Petro, Executive Chef of Bosscat Kitchen and Libations; and Ashley Guzman, formerly Pastry Chef at North Left and 2015 Golden Foodie Award-Winner for “Outstanding Pastry Chef.”

Limited to nine students per class, CulinaryLab’s intimate culinary training sessions focus on teaching proper cooking techniques and allowing students to perfect each skill for two days per week over the course of seven months. Trained Chef Instructors will include the local restaurant community into the class curriculum to ensure that students gain valuable insight that will enable them to transition into the industry seamlessly upon graduating. Local chefs, farmers, artisans, authors, and food scientists will serve as special guests throughout the course to offer interactive demos, input, and teaching tools that help students learn about relevant areas of expertise.

Simultaneously, each student spends another two days per week at a local Orange County restaurant, where they put their training into practice alongside top chefs. Students are exposed to the real world of professional cooking, which serves to reinforce weekly lessons. Cooking techniques, vocabulary, and ingredients leave the classroom and come to life in a working kitchen.

“CulinaryLab serves as the necessary link between up-and-coming chefs and the restaurant community,” explains Ryan Wagner, Chef Director at CulinaryLab. “We are doing something unlike anyone else in the region – we’ve revived culinary education by making it relevant to the times. When they’re not in class, our students are in the kitchen with the area’s most noted chefs, gaining fast-paced, real-world experience not normally available to beginners.”

Local Chef Partners who are active in the Orange County community will serve as mentors as CulinaryLab students go through their mandatory apprenticeship program.

Dan TapiaThe first DINE LBC Long Beach Restaurant Week Holiday Cocktail Contest was held at The Sky Room’s Cielo rooftop lounge on November 15th. Five amateur finalists were selected (out of dozens of qualified entries) to create their concoctions in front of a panel of five thirsty judges, including the Executive Producer of the “SoCal Restaurant Show.”

The cocktails were scored on the basis of Creativity of Ingredients, Taste/Flavor, Presentation and Likely to Order at The Sky Room. After careful deliberation the Judges’ decision for the First Place Winner was unanimous and Dan Tapia, the creator of Little Drummer Boy, joins us. The cocktail is a creative variation of a Hot Toddy.

Dan’s prize was a pair of JetBlue Travel Certificates for anywhere JetBlue flies domestically.

Dine LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week is taking place April 23 – May 1, 2016! Held annually, Dine LBC features value-oriented, three course menus from dozens of Long Beach’s best restaurants in twelve unique neighborhoods throughout the city.

Each participating restaurant offers a three-course menu priced at $20, $30, $40 or $50, per guest either with wine pairing options at fine dining locations OR dinner for two priced at $20, $30, $40 or $50, where diners share an appetizer, each enjoy their own entree, then share a dessert at more casual establishments.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel and Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Holman Ranch Vineyards & Will’s Fargo Steakhouse + Bar
Segment Three: GMO Salmon and Dungeness Crab with Chef Andrew Gruel
Segment Four: Madhur Jaffrey and Vegetarian India
Segment Five: Restaurateur Tony Tollner & Rio Grill, Carmel
Segment Six: Chef Director Ryan Wagner, Culinary Lab Part One
Segment Seven: Chef Director Ryan Wagner, Culinary Lab Part Two
Segment Eight: DINE LBC Holiday Cocktail Contest

Show 144, October 31, 2015: National Sandwich Day – The Kroft’s Creation

Stephen LeIt’s National Sandwich Day on Tuesday, November 3rd. We’re honoring the beloved “portable meal” created by the 18th century English noble, John Montagu.

The Kroft, with popular locations at the Anaheim Packing House and, now, Tustin Union Market, has created The Leftover Sandwich to mark the occasion. It’s the full Thanksgiving feast served on an artisan ciabatta roll with everything created from scratch. Even the turkey thyme gravy is house-made. It’s more than a mouthful and layers of deliciousness…

The treat is that The Leftover Sandwich will be available through the end of 2015!

We’ll hear all about it from The Kroft’s energetic co-founder, Stephen Le.

The Kroft is known for introducing (and popularizing) Poutine to the OC. For the upcoming “Best of the OC” for OC Weekly, The Kroft has been nominated for “Best Sandwich” and “Best New Restaurant.”

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Show 140, October 3, 2015: ADYA – Fresh Indian Flavors and Executive Chef Shachi Mehra

Shachi MehraExecutive Chef Shachi Mehra is the co-proprietor of ADYA – Fresh Indian Flavors in the Packing House in Anaheim. At the recent Golden Foodie Awards ADYA was one of three distinguished nominees for Best Indian Cuisine. We’ll find out from Chef Shachi herself what restaurant was awarded the coveted honor.

“At ADYA, we showcase the flavorful street food of India. Our inspiration comes from the multitude of bright flavors and textures representing the diversity of India itself. Working with our local farmers, growers and purveyors, we strive to use local, organic, biodynamic ingredients whenever possible. Combining these with modern creative and classic Indian styles of cooking, we present food that balances the bounty of California with the bold flavors and spices of India. The carefully curated wine list and rotating craft beer list complement our vibrant flavors and casual style. Our team’s passion for hospitality comes through with each bite, every sip and with every smiling interaction.”

Shachi grew up surrounded by good food and learned early the importance of eating seasonally during her annual summer trips to her native India. Her mother was an exceptional cook, and as a young girl, Shachi spent many a moment sitting on the counter, as the ‘official taste tester’ of the house. Growing up in New Jersey, Shachi had her share of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches as well as traditional Indian foods; this crossing of two cultures from her youth carries in to her work now and allows her the ability to see things from different perspectives and bridge the gap between perception and reality of Indian food.

As a chef, Mehra believes in creating innovative and thoughtful menus that tastefully balance a variety of flavors and makes cuisines appealing to a range of tastes. She is also an ardent supporter of local farmers and sustainable practices.

A second ADYA is in the works. Location and timeframe are under securely wraps at the moment. We’ll keep after Chef Shachi for the future details…

Look for her interactive “Learn To Create” monthly cooking classes at ADYA. It’s the home cooks’ guide to quick, easy Indian dishes. The next class is Saturday, November 7th. It’s Indian Thanksgiving dishes for the American table. Do I hear tandoori turkey?

 

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Show 114, March 14, 2015: Executive Chef Shachi Mehra, ADYA, Anaheim Packing House

Shachi MehraThis month, ADYA Executive Chef/Owner, Shachi Mehra, introduces four weeks of special curries in an effort to highlight India’s regional culinary styles and provide guests with a delicious, in-depth look at India’s culinary diversity. The curries will feature ingredients and styles of cooking unique to each region, from coconut and curry leaves, to poppy seeds and mustard.

“Curry, in simplest terms, is a mix of spices – the composition of these spices varies greatly among the regional cuisines native to India,” commented Chef Shachi, whose diverse menu of fresh Indian flavors features a variety of traditional curries. “As curries become increasingly popular, diners are beginning to realize that curry isn’t just Chicken Tikka Masala. My goal is to provide my guests with a better understanding of the defining factors of the different types of curries one can find in Indian regional cooking.”

Chef Shachi is with us to explain it all.

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