Show 251, December 9, 2017: “Las Vegas Strong” Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris

Now a VIP high roller’s preview of this Saturday’s intriguing, all-Las Vegas show special. We’re going behind-the-scenes with some of Fabulous Las Vegas’ most fascinating food-related personalities. We’re with you live every Saturday morning throughout The Holidays. 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…

Rick Moonen is one of the very few celebrity chefs with high profile restaurants in Las Vegas who actually lives in Fabulous Las Vegas. His two restaurants in The Shoppes at Mandalay Place are RM Seafood and Rx Boiler Room. Chef Rick is our guest.

Mike Minor is back as the Executive Chef of Mary Sue Milliken’s and Susan Feniger’s original Border Grill Las Vegas (launched in 1999) located by the lazy river adjacent to Mandalay Beach at the Mandalay Bay Resort on The Strip. Chef Mike is a long-time Las Vegas veteran and has a huge locals’ following. We’ll meet him.

Chef Brian Howard developed a loyal following during his tenure at Comme Ca located in The Cosmopolitan (“just the right amount of wrong.”) He’s now branched out on his own with Sparrow + Wolf located in Las Vegas’s bustling Chinatown just off The Strip on Spring Mountain Road. Chef Brian refers to his establishment as “Neighborhood Cookery & Libations.” Chef Brian joins us to talk about his first seven months of operations.

The delightfully opinionated Al Mancini took on the dream assignment for any food journalist of becoming the food reporter for The Las Vegas Review-Journal just about a year ago. He’s an unabashed fan of Fabulous Las Vegas. Al is celebrating a B-I-G Birthday this weekend and we pull him away from the festivities for a chat.

Stowe Shoemaker is the dean of the William F. Harrah College of Hospitality at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV.) Prior to being named dean, Shoemaker served as a Lincy Professor at UNLV and the Donald Hubbs Distinguished Professor at the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel Administration at the University of Houston. For many years he was a member of the executive education faculty at the Cornell University School of Hotel Administration, and for a time he maintained an appointment in the Division of Diagnostic Imagery at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. We’re in with The Dean.

As Senior Managing Partner of the Wolfgang Puck Fine Dining Group, Tom Kaplan has worked alongside Wolfgang Puck for nearly 36 years with his world-renowned restaurants. Tom started his lengthy association with Chef Wolfgang as Office Manager two months after the original Spago West Hollywood opened in 1982. His responsibilities include overall business management, strategic development, design, and construction supervision, and philanthropy for the company’s 28 domestic and international locations. Tom Kaplan is our guest.

The Mob Museum, the National Museum of Organized Crime and Law Enforcement, is a world-class destination in downtown Las Vegas. It presents an exciting and authentic view of the Mob’s impact on Las Vegas history and its unique imprint on America and the world. With tales so intriguing they need no embellishment, The Mob Museum reveals an insider’s look at the events and people on both sides of this continuing battle between organized crime and law enforcement. The Mob Museum’s Brenda Hengel>, Public Relations and Marketing Brand Manager, joins us.

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

Play

December 9: #VegasStrong: A Tribute to Las Vegas Culinary Excellence

Podcasts

Segment One: “Las Vegas Strong” Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Celebrity Chef Rick Moonen, RM Seafood & Rx Boiler Room, Las Vegas
Segment Three: Chef Mike Minor, Border Grill Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas
Segment Four: Chef / Owner Brian Howard, Sparrow + Wolf, Chinatown, Las Vegas
Segment Five: Food Journalist Al Mancini, Las Vegas Review-Journalk
Segment Six: Dean Stowe Shoemaker, William F. Harrah College of Hospitality, UNLV
Segment Seven: Tom Kaplan, Senior Managing Partner, Wolfgang Puck Fine Dining Group
Segment Eight: Brenda Hengel, Public Relations and Marketing Brand Manager, The Mob Museum, Las Vegas

Now an intriguing preview of this Saturday’s overflowing show. It’s our very special Las Vegas Strong! show. Keep in mind we’re with you live every Saturday morning throughout The Holidays. 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…

Rick Moonen is one of the very few celebrity chefs with high profile restaurants in Las Vegas who actually lives in Fabulous Las Vegas. His two restaurants in The Shoppes at Mandalay Place are RM Seafood and RX Boiler Room. Chef Rick is our guest.

Mike Minor is the Executive Chef of Mary Sue Milliken’s and Susan Feniger’s original Border Grill Las Vegas (launched in 1999) located by the lazy river adjacent to Mandalay Beach at the Mandalay Bay Resort on The Strip. Chef Mike grew up in Las Vegas and has a huge locals’ following. We’ll meet him.

Chef Brian Howard developed a loyal following during his tenure at Comme Ca located in The Cosmopolitan. He’s now branched out on his own with Sparrow + Wolf located in Las Vegas’s bustling Chinatown just Off The Strip on Spring Mountain Road. Chef Brian refers to his establishment as “Neighborhood Cookery & Libations.” Chef Brian joins us to talk about his first seven months of operations.

The delightfully opinionated Al Mancini took on the dream assignment for any food journalist of becoming the food reporter for The Las Vegas Review-Journal just about a year ago. He’s an unabashed fan of Fabulous Las Vegas. Al is celebrating a B-I-G Birthday this weekend and we pull him away from the festivities for a chat.

Stowe Shoemaker is the dean of the William F. Harrah College of Hospitality at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV.) Prior to being named dean, Shoemaker served as a Lincy Professor at UNLV and the Donald Hubbs Distinguished Professor at the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel Administration at the University of Houston. For many years he was a member of the executive education faculty at the Cornell University School of Hotel Administration, and for a time he maintained an appointment in the Division of Diagnostic Imagery at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. We’re in with The Dean.

As Senior Managing Partner of the Wolfgang Puck Fine Dining Group, Tom Kaplan has worked alongside Wolfgang Puck for nearly 36 years with his world-renowned restaurants. Tom started his lengthy association with Chef Wolfgang as Office Manager two months after the original Spago West Hollywood opened in 1982. His responsibilities include overall business management, strategic development, design, and construction supervision, and philanthropy for the company’s 28 domestic and international locations. Tom Kaplan is our guest.

The Mob Museum, the National Museum of Organized Crime and Law Enforcement, is a world-class destination in downtown Las Vegas. It presents an exciting and authentic view of the Mob’s impact on Las Vegas history and its unique imprint on America and the world. With tales so intriguing they need no embellishment, The Mob Museum reveals an insider’s look at the events and people on both sides of this continuing battle between organized crime and law enforcement. The Mob Museum’s Brenda Hengel, Public Relations and Marketing Brand Manager, joins us.

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

Rick Moonen of rm seafood in Las VegasRick Moonen is one of the very few celebrity chefs with high profile restaurants in Las Vegas who actually lives in Fabulous Las Vegas. His two restaurants in The Shoppes at Mandalay Place are RM Seafood and Rx Boiler Room.

Since opening RM Seafood at The Shoppes at Mandalay Place in 2005, Master Chef Rick Moonen brings his expertise to The Strip by offering a unique dining experience with a thoughtful selection of seafood through his delectable dishes. Renowned for his passionate views on sustainable seafood, Chef Moonen creates an experience that features a vast array of flavor combinations designed to exemplify the natural qualities of fresh ingredients. Along with abundant offerings from the sea, the menu includes Wagyu beef, lamb, salads and other unique items such as seared foie gras and chicken san daniele.

Combining the alchemy of food and drink, Chef Rick Moonen’s Rx Boiler Room showcases his spin on classic comfort food, offering guests a variety of playful creations in small and large plate portions, ideal for a shared dining experience. Paired to elevate and complement the overall experience, the drink menu features an emporium of the finest spirits and innovative libations. Rx Boiler Room offers a modern reflection of the Victorian era, celebrating the steampunk sub-genre often associated with science-fiction and inspired by industrialized Western civilization during the 19th century.

Chef Rick is our guest.

Mike Minor of Border Grill in Las VegasMike Minor is the Executive Chef of Mary Sue Milliken’s and Susan Feniger’s original Border Grill Las Vegas (launched in 1999) located by the lazy river adjacent to Mandalay Beach at the Mandalay Bay Resort on The Strip. Chef Mike grew up in Las Vegas and has a huge locals’ following. We’ll meet him.

Ironically, it was a French restaurant where Chefs Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger first tasted authentic Latin flavors. While guests were dining on escargot out front, in the back of the house Mary Sue and Susan were discovering the home cooking of Oaxaca and the Yucatan at staff meals prepared by their fellow cooks from Mexico. Unlike anything they had ever tasted in Mexican restaurants in the United States, the dishes were as varied and complex as the French fare the chefs were serving out front.

In 1985, Mary Sue and Susan packed a VW bug and took a road trip far south of the Mexican border. Never setting foot in a “fine restaurant,” they learned the recipes and techniques of market vendors and home cooks, from street corners in downtown Mexico City to back road family barbecues and taco stands along the beach. When they returned they opened Border Grill and “applied the same intelligence,” noted Los Angeles Magazine, “to green corn tamales and cactus-paddle tacos that other chefs might to a lobe of foie gras.” Border Grill quickly established a new standard for gourmet Mexican fare.

Brian Howard of Comme Ca in Las VegasChef Brian Howard developed a loyal following during his tenure at Comme Ca located in The Cosmopolitan. He’s now branched out on his own with Sparrow + Wolf located in Las Vegas’s bustling Chinatown just Off The Strip on Spring Mountain Road. Chef Brian refers to his establishment as “Neighborhood Cookery & Libations.”

Chef Brian Howard’ Sparrow + Wolf boasts cuisine from the heart using a modern hand. It features American cookery influenced by the culturally diverse neighborhoods of Chef Brian’s travels, classic training and Midwestern roots.

Throughout his 17-year culinary career in Las Vegas, star Chef Brian Howard earned his stripes working with some of the most popular restaurants on The Strip. He has gained the utmost respect from his colleagues and the city’s most prestigious food writers, including one who referred to Howard as “The Most Ambitious Chef in Las Vegas.” The culinary field is known as a profession of passion, and Howard is a bold example of that premise, having believed since he was 10 years old that cooking is in his blood.

Chef Brian attributes his varied influences to being surrounded by talented people, childhood memories, and his continuous hunger for learning new things every day. “I’ve always had a fight and desire in me to never give up, no matter how rocky the road,” says Howard.  “Perseverance has gotten me to where I am today and now I just want to create something for the people of Las Vegas, a city that has been good to me. I want to create food that I’d like to eat.”

Chef Brian joins us to talk about his first seven months of operations.

Al ManciniThe delightfully opinionated Al Mancini took on the dream assignment for any food journalist of becoming the food reporter for The Las Vegas Review-Journal just about a year ago. He’s an unabashed fan of Fabulous Las Vegas. He also faithfully covers the happenings in the revived Downtown Las Vegas including the vibrant restaurant scene there.

Al discovered his passion for food while living in New York City, where he attended law school by day, tended bar and made pizza at the infamous punk club CBGB by night, and explored the Big Apple’s dynamic dining scene during every spare moment in between.

Previously Al has written extensively about food and dining for numerous local, Las Vegas lifestyle publications. He is the co-creator of Eating Las Vegas – The 50 Essential Restaurants guidebook which launched with the 2011 Edition.

Al is celebrating a B-I-G Birthday this weekend and we pull him away from the festivities for a chat.

Stowe Shoemaker is the Dean of the William F Harrah College of Hotel Administration at University of Nevada Las VegasStowe Shoemaker is the dean of the William F. Harrah College of Hospitality at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV.) Prior to being named dean, Shoemaker served as a Lincy Professor at UNLV and the Donald Hubbs Distinguished Professor at the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel Administration at the University of Houston. For many years he was a member of the executive education faculty at the Cornell University School of Hotel Administration, and for a time he maintained an appointment in the Division of Diagnostic Imagery at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.

Located in the heart of the hotel, gaming and tourism industries, UNLV’s William F. Harrah College of Hospitality is uniquely positioned to offer students the real-world skills they need to succeed in the dynamic field of hospitality.

Hospitality Hall, The College’s new $59 million, 93,500 square-foot building, will welcome students next year. Hospitality Hall will provide the setting and the resources students need to learn the fast-paced, ever changing world of hospitality. With faculty guidance and industry partnerships, Hospitality Hall will help set a new standard of excellence in hospitality education.

We’re in with The Dean.

Tom KaplanAs Senior Managing Partner of the Wolfgang Puck Fine Dining Group, Tom Kaplan has worked alongside Wolfgang Puck for nearly 36 years with his world-renowned restaurants. Tom started his lengthy association with Chef Wolfgang as Office Manager two months after the original Spago West Hollywood opened in 1982. His responsibilities include overall business management, strategic development, design, and construction supervision, and philanthropy for the company’s 28 domestic and international locations.

Since 1982, Puck and Kaplan have grown the company from several individual restaurants into a collection of restaurants known as the Wolfgang Puck Fine Dining Group. Primary brands include Spago, CUT, re/Asian Cuisine, and the Wolfgang Puck Bar & Grill. Over the years Kaplan has nurtured key strategic partnerships with luxury hotel brands and major casinos such as the Four Seasons, Dorchester Collection, MGM Resorts International and Las Vegas Sands.

The big Wolfgang Puck Las Vegas news is that after 25 years Spago Las Vegas, in 2018, will move to the former Olives location at The Bellagio, regarded as one of the best restaurant locations in Las Vegas.

Tom Kaplan is our guest.

Brenda HengelThe Mob Museum, the National Museum of Organized Crime and Law Enforcement, is a world-class destination in downtown Las Vegas. It presents an exciting and authentic view of the Mob’s impact on Las Vegas history and its unique imprint on America and the world. With tales so intriguing they need no embellishment, The Mob Museum reveals an insider’s look at the events and people on both sides of this continuing battle between organized crime and law enforcement.

True stories of Mob history are brought to life in a bold and contemporary style via engaging exhibits and multi-sensory experiences. The Mob Museum puts the visitor in the middle of the action through high-tech theater presentations, iconic one-of-a-kind artifacts and interactive, themed environments. The Mob Museum was ranked #20 out of 25 Top U.S. Museums in 2017 by TripAdvisor.

The Mob Museum features a variety of interactive exhibits, films and high-tech audio-visual displays that are periodically updated to reflect new information and acquisitions. Exhibits examine in great depth such topics as how organized crime persists today; how the Mob is perceived and portrayed in pop culture; how the battle against the Mob was fought with focus on important historic and law enforcement victories; an examination of Mob violence, corruption, conspiracy and murder; notable mobsters and Mob busters; an in-depth look at Las Vegas as the ultimate “open city” that attracted mobsters and how organized crime operated “the skim” inside casinos; and a historic timeline on the birth and evolution of organized crime with a look at its geographic “families” from around the globe.

The centerpiece exhibit of the Museum is the courtroom where the proceedings of the United States Senate Special Committee to Investigate Crime in Interstate Commerce occurred in Las Vegas in 1950. Led by U.S. Senator Estes Kefauver, the hearings sought to expose organized crime.

The Mob Museum’s Brenda Hengel, Public Relations and Marketing Brand Manager, joins us.

Podcasts

Segment One: “Las Vegas Strong” Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Celebrity Chef Rick Moonen, RM Seafood & Rx Boiler Room, Las Vegas
Segment Three: Chef Mike Minor, Border Grill Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas
Segment Four: Chef / Owner Brian Howard, Sparrow + Wolf, Chinatown, Las Vegas
Segment Five: Food Journalist Al Mancini, Las Vegas Review-Journalk
Segment Six: Dean Stowe Shoemaker, William F. Harrah College of Hospitality, UNLV
Segment Seven: Tom Kaplan, Senior Managing Partner, Wolfgang Puck Fine Dining Group
Segment Eight: Brenda Hengel, Public Relations and Marketing Brand Manager, The Mob Museum, Las Vegas

Show 222, May 6, 2017: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris

Now an intriguing preview of this Saturday’s tantalizing 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…

Tower 12, located on Hermosa Beach’s Pier Avenue, is a new hang that throws it back for the local community. The new South Bay spot incorporates vintage artifacts, furnishings and artwork that rep the laidback surf, music and beach scene. Wanting to create a welcoming, truly unique space for friends and neighbors to kick back and enjoy incredible food and drink, the Tower 12 team called on Consulting Chef Brendan Collins (Birch in Hollywood) to create California-inspired, updated spins on American classics.  Chef Brendan joins us with the edible highlights.

The Bellwether (Studio City) owners Chef Ted Hopson and Beverage Director Ann-Marie Verdi will come together on May 17th to host a collaborative dining experience with none other than Food Network’s Chef Jet Tila (the original Co-Host of “The SoCal Restaurant Show”) who is also the executive chef & partner of Pakpao Thai in Dallas. This is part of The Los Angeles Times Food Bowl. Guests will enjoy a tasty five-course prix fixe pan-Asian menu with an optional beverage pairing. Chef Ted and Ann-Marie join us.

Rooney’s Irish Pub and Shanty Irish Brewing Co. are the pride of Orcutt, CA. With a superb culinary team, Rooney’s is recognized as a “gastropub,” known for its excellent gourmet pub fare. Rooney’s is also a ‘brewpub,’ proudly introducing the area to freshly made craft beers. Rooney’s turns out some of the freshest ales; Ambers, Blonds, Porters, IPA’s and other seasonal specialty ales, lagers, and pilsners. Rooney’s also offers an extensive ‘cellar’ list of fine craft brews, sharing Tim’s love of some of his other favorite breweries. Proprietor Tim Rooney moves out from behind the long bar and is out guest.

We’re continuing our preview of the Los Angeles Times Food Bowl which is on now through May 31st. Joining us is Susan Feniger of Border Grill fame. Border Grill, Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger are all participating in multiple events as part of the Food Bowl. Their contribution to “Things In A Bowl Menu Items is an Heirloom tomato gazpacho in a bowl topped with shrimp and crab salpicon.

The ninth annual Ka‘u Coffee Festival (Big Island of Hawaii) celebrates its award-winning brew with a host of events starting May 19 and continuing through the weekend of May 27-28 with a java-jumpin’ ho‘olaulea‘a on Saturday and the Ka‘u Coffee College educational series on Sunday. Supported by the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority and a bevy of sponsors and volunteers, the Ka‘u Coffee Festival is designed to celebrate Ka‘u as a premium coffee growing origin and a unique visitor destination. Many events are free, while others require a nominal fee and reservations. Organizer Chris Manfredi joins us.

Our Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel, is on the road this morning at Trade in Irvine. Both of his new concepts, Two Birds and Butterleaf, are now open. The festive Grand Opening of Trade is next Saturday, May 13th. With the Summer picnic season upon us Chef Andrew has some tips for preparing world class fried chicken. We’ll catch-up with him by phone.

If you perhaps missed last Saturday’s show from the 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival at The Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel there is hope. The podcasts of the show segments from the Reef Lounge are available for the listening via our website or on iTunes.

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

Play

Show 222, May 6, 2017: Susan Feniger, Border Grill, The Los Angeles Times Food Bowl

Susan Feniger of Mud Hen TavernWe’re continuing our preview of the Los Angeles Times Food Bowl which is on now through May 31st. Joining us is Susan Feniger of Border Grill fame. Border Grill, Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger are all participating in multiple events as part of the Food Bowl. Their contribution to “Things In A Bowl Menu Items is an Heirloom tomato gazpacho in a bowl topped with shrimp and crab salpicon.

Susan will also be previewing the May 19th screening at The Huntington, Pasadena of the new documentary, James Beard: America’s First Foodie. Beard is revered (and remembered) as the Dean of American Cookery.

Susan’s business partner, Mary Sue Milliken, knew Beard (also a Trustee of The James Beard Foundation) and will be a part of a panel with Chef Jim Dodge and the filmmakers after the screening of the documentary.

Border Grill is also part of Beast Feast (May 21st) with Fergus Henderson, April Bloomfield and Michael Cimarusti.

Play

May 6: Brendan Colllins, Ted Hopson, Ann-Marie Verdi, Rooney’s Irish Pub, Susan Feniger, Ka’u Coffee Fest

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Executive Consulting Chef Brendan Collins, Tower 12, Hermosa Beach
Segment Three: The Bellwether’s Executive Chef / Proprietor Ted Hopson & Proprietor / Beverage Director Anne-Marie Verdi
Segment Four: Tim Rooney, Proprietor, Rooney’s Irish Pub, Orcutt, CA
Segment Five: Susan Feniger, Border Grill, The Los Angeles Times Food Bowl
Segment Six: 9th Annual Ka’u Coffee Festival, Big Island of Hawaii
Segment Seven: Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group

Now an intriguing preview of this Saturday’s tantalizing 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…

Tower 12, located on Hermosa Beach’s Pier Avenue, is a new hang that throws it back for the local community. The new South Bay spot incorporates vintage artifacts, furnishings and artwork that rep the laidback surf, music and beach scene. Wanting to create a welcoming, truly unique space for friends and neighbors to kick back and enjoy incredible food and drink, the Tower 12 team called on Consulting Chef Brendan Collins (Birch in Hollywood) to create California-inspired, updated spins on American classics. Chef Brendan joins us with the edible highlights.

The Bellwether (Studio City) owners Chef Ted Hopson and Beverage Director Ann-Marie Verdi will come together on May 17th to host a collaborative dining experience with none other than Food Network’s Chef Jet Tila who is also the executive chef & partner of Pakpao Thai in Dallas. Guests will enjoy a tasty five-course prix fixe menu with an optional beverage pairing. Chef Ted and Ann-Marie join us.

Rooney’s Irish Pub and Shanty Irish Brewing Co. are the pride of Orcutt, CA. With a superb culinary team, Rooney’s is recognized as a “gastropub,” known for its excellent gourmet pub fare. Rooney’s is also a ‘brewpub,’ proudly introducing the area to freshly made craft beers. Rooney’s turns out some of the freshest ales; Ambers, Blonds, Porters, IPA’s and other seasonal specialty ales, lagers, and pilsners. Rooney’s also offers an extensive ‘cellar’ list of fine craft brews, sharing Tim’s love of some of his other favorite breweries. Proprietor Tim Rooney moves out from behind the long bar and is out guest.

We’re continuing our preview of the Los Angeles Times Food Bowl which is on now through May 31st. Joining us is Susan Feniger of Border Grill fame. Border Grill, Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger are all participating in multiple events as part of the Food Bowl. Their contribution to “Things In A Bowl Menu Items” is an Heirloom tomato gazpacho in a bowl topped with shrimp and crab salpicon.

The ninth annual Ka‘u Coffee Festival (Big Island of Hawaii) celebrates its award-winning brew with a host of events starting May 19 and continuing through the weekend of May 27-28 with a java-jumpin’ ho‘olaulea‘a on Saturday and the Ka‘u Coffee College educational series on Sunday. Supported by the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority and a bevy of sponsors and volunteers, the Ka‘u Coffee Festival is designed to celebrate Ka‘u as a premium coffee growing origin and a unique visitor destination. Many events are free, while others require a nominal fee and reservations. Organizer Chris Manfredi joins us.

Our Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel, is on the road this morning. We’ll catch-up with him by phone.

If you perhaps missed last Saturday’s show from the 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival at The Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel there is hope. The podcasts of the show segments from the Reef Lounge are available for the listening via our website or on iTunes.

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

Brendan CollinsTower 12, located on Hermosa Beach’s Pier Avenue, is a new hang that throws it back for the local community. The new South Bay spot incorporates vintage artifacts, furnishings and artwork that rep the laidback surf, music and beach scene. Wanting to create a welcoming, truly unique space for friends and neighbors to kick back and enjoy incredible food and drink, the Tower 12 team called on Consulting Chef Brendan Collins (Birch in Hollywood) to create California-inspired, updated spins on American classics.

Tower 12’s food program is guided by Consulting Chef Brendan Collins, one of Los Angeles’ most distinguished culinary names, alongside Executive Chef Alex Granados. The Tower 12 team created a menu full of delights for the hungry surfer.

Shareable starters include Woodfired Garlic Blue Shrimp with Whole Caledonian Shrimp, garlic butter & charred sourdough, Cheese Steak Poppers with Yorkshire popovers, ribeye, peppers, onion & cheese sauce and Chicken Lollipop Wings with green apple & bourbon chipotle hot sauce. Tower 12 also offers an assortment of chef selected charcuterie and artisan cheese boards. Signature salads include Roasted Heirloom Beets with Caña de Cabre Goat Cheese, baby greens, cherry tomato, Banyuls vinaigrette and Smoked Chicken Waldorf with house-smoked chicken, candied walnuts, green apple, bleu cheese, baby gem & cranberry balsamic vinaigrette.

Hand-tossed pizzas baked in Tower 12’s woodfired oven include the Banzai Pipeline Hawaiian Pizza with parma cotto ham, pineapple, Fresno chilis, mint & tomato sauce and Magic Mushroom Pizza with forest mushrooms, truffle gremolata, crème fraiche & arugula. Among the “between the bread” offerings are a House-Smoked Pastrami Sandwich with double-smoked, hand-cut pastrami, Emmental cheese, coleslaw & house Russian dressing on grilled marble rye and Ahi Tuna Banh Mi Burger with sushi grade tuna, cucumber, Vietnamese mint, nam sauce, roasted peanuts, cilantro, hoisin, pickled carrots & cucumbers on a sesame seed bun.

Hearty entrees include a 12-Hour Braised Short Rib with brown butter mashed potatoes & grilled broccolini and Organic Salmon on Cedar with a miso glaze, grilled broccolini & chile marmalade. Rounding out the menu are vegetable sides such as Grilled Broccolini with lemon, garlic, shallots, extra virgin olive oil & chili flakes and Brown Butter Mashed Potatoes with Yukon potato & caramelized brown butter.

Tower 12 houses two full-service bars specializing in handcrafted cocktails, wine and 30 local brews on tap. Located on a second story deck with beautiful ocean views, Tower 12 features a wraparound, wooden outdoor balcony and interconnected rooms that feel more like a kickback for friends than a public space.

Chef Brendan joins us with the highlights and the surf report.

Ann Marie Verdi and Ted Hopson of the BellwetherThe Bellwether (Studio City) owners Chef Ted Hopson and Beverage Director Ann-Marie Verdi will come together on May 17th to host a collaborative dining experience with none other than Food Network’s Chef Jet Tila who is also the executive chef & partner of Pakpao Thai in Dallas. Guests will enjoy a tasty five-course prix fixe menu with an optional beverage pairing.

The Bellwether is the debut restaurant and bar from Executive Chef/Owner Ted Hopson and Beverage Director/Owner Anne-Marie Verdi. The market-inspired menu aims to capitalize on the abundance of California produce in order to showcase one-of-a-kind food and drink menus that feature family style shareable dishes, unique infusion based cocktails, and a hand selected list of beer and wine.

Chef Ted and Ann-Marie join us.

Tim RooneyRooney’s Irish Pub and Shanty Irish Brewing Co. are the pride of Orcutt, CA. Also famous (Orcutt) for “Old Maud,” a gusher of an oil well discovered there in 1904. With a superb culinary team, Rooney’s is recognized as a “gastropub,” known for its excellent gourmet pub fare.

Rooney’s is also a ‘brewpub,’ proudly introducing the area to freshly made craft beers. Rooney’s turns out some of the freshest ales; Ambers, Blonds, Porters, IPA’s and other seasonal specialty ales, lagers, and pilsners. Rooney’s also offers an extensive ‘cellar’ list of fine craft brews, sharing Tim’s love of some of his other favorite breweries.

“Being of Irish heritage, I have always loved everything Irish. Much of our inspiration developed as our family traveled to Ireland where we toured much of the Emerald Isle. I’m not sure if we missed many Irish pubs along the way, but we loved the people, countryside, and “craic,” as they say. “

“Our love for craft beer began in the early 1980’s where finding anything beyond the basic lagers was difficult. Finally discovering Sierra Nevada, Anchor Brewing, and Sam Adams it opened a new world of freshly made, hoppy greatness.

“For as many Irish pubs we have visited, we have probably discovered more craft breweries, brewpubs, and micro brews throughout California and beyond. Our love for both had us filling a need in the Santa Maria Valley; an Irish Brewpub! Although the original vision was that of a small humble establishment, Rooney’s opened in July of 2010, and has been recognized as one of the most beautiful and authentic Irish pubs on the Central Coast. “

There is no better place to eat well, drink deep, and celebrate every good day than at Rooney’s Irish Pub, where

“There are no strangers, only friends we’ve never met.”

Proprietor Tim Rooney moves out from behind the long bar and is our guest.

Susan Feniger of Mud Hen TavernWe’re continuing our preview of the Los Angeles Times Food Bowl which is on now through May 31st. Joining us is Susan Feniger of Border Grill fame. Border Grill, Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger are all participating in multiple events as part of the Food Bowl. Their contribution to “Things In A Bowl Menu Items is an Heirloom tomato gazpacho in a bowl topped with shrimp and crab salpicon.

Susan will also be previewing the May 19th screening at The Huntington, Pasadena of the new documentary, James Beard: America’s First Foodie. Beard is revered (and remembered) as the Dean of American Cookery.

Susan’s business partner, Mary Sue Milliken, knew Beard and will be a part of a panel with Chef Jim Dodge and the filmmakers after the screening of the documentary.

Chris ManfrediThe ninth annual Ka‘u Coffee Festival (Big Island of Hawaii) celebrates its award-winning brew with a host of events starting May 19 and continuing through the weekend of May 27-28 with a java-jumpin’ ho‘olaulea‘a on Saturday and the Ka‘u Coffee College educational series on Sunday. Supported by the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority and a bevy of sponsors and volunteers, the Ka‘u Coffee Festival is designed to celebrate Ka‘u as a premium coffee growing origin and a unique visitor destination.

Many events are free, while others require a nominal fee and reservations.

An unspoiled land, sunny climate and misty afternoons give Ka’u coffee it characteristic deep flavors. One esteemed coffee taster described a special Ka’u coffee as “the taste of chocolate, cherry and coconut accented with floral notes of orchid and citrus flavors.”

“Unique cultivating practices including hand-picking, sun drying, warm sunny mornings and misty afternoon rains and fertile volcanic soils combine with the passion and aloha of Ka’u farmers to produce some of the finest coffees grown anywhere.”

Organizer Chris Manfredi of Ka’u Farm and Ranch joins us.

Andrew and William GruelOur Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel, is on the road this morning. We’ll catch-up with him by phone.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Executive Consulting Chef Brendan Collins, Tower 12, Hermosa Beach
Segment Three: The Bellwether’s Executive Chef / Proprietor Ted Hopson & Proprietor / Beverage Director Anne-Marie Verdi
Segment Four: Tim Rooney, Proprietor, Rooney’s Irish Pub, Orcutt, CA
Segment Five: Susan Feniger, Border Grill, The Los Angeles Times Food Bowl
Segment Six: 9th Annual Ka’u Coffee Festival, Big Island of Hawaii
Segment Seven: Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group

Show 214, March 11, 2017: Chef Bev Lazo, Fiesta Adobo Catering

Bev LazoFans of Fox’s Hell’s Kitchen will recall the memorable Chef Bev Lazo (ex-Border Grill) 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 in Anaheim at the Highway 39 Event Center for Chef Bruno Serato, his non-profit Caterina’s Club and the displaced staff members of The Anaheim White House. She successfully introduced tasty Filipino food to a somewhat skeptical crowd!

We’ll meet her.

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Show 162, March 5, 2016: C-CAP L.A. Program Director Lisa Fontanesi and Celebrity Chef Sherry Yard

City of GoldPulitzer Prize-winning food critic Jonathan Gold will join local non-profit C-CAP LA (Careers through Culinary Arts Program) at their upcoming fundraiser at the Westside Pavilion on Monday, March 14, 2016, featuring a VIP screening of City of Gold, a documentary that details Gold’s journey through Los Angeles’ cultural culinary scene. Following the screening will be a Q & A with filmmaker Laura Gabbert and Jonathan Gold moderated by KCRW’s “Good Food” host, Chef Evan Kleiman.

Taking place at The Wine Bar at the Landmark Theaters Westside Pavilion, the City of Gold event begins with a reception featuring premium wines from the Wine Exchange and craft beer from El Segundo Brewery and Smog City Brewing Co. as well as some of Gold’s favorite foods including sliders from West Coast Prime Meats, pork tostadas from Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken’s Border Grill, crudités and fruit from Melissa’s Produce, desserts from Spago and an oyster bar, courtesy of Michael Cimarusti’s new Cape Seafood and Provisions.

The reception will be followed by a special screening of City of Gold, accompanied by gourmet popcorn prepared by Sherry Yard. After screening the film, KCRW Good Food’s Evan Kleiman will moderate a Q&A session with Gold and Gabbert.

Sherry YardThe City of Gold fundraiser will take place on Monday, March 14 at the Landmark Theaters Westside Pavilion located at 10850 West Pico Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90064. The reception begins at 6:00 PM and the 91 minute documentary will begin at 7:30 PM, followed by the Q&A session. Tickets are $101 and can be purchased at ccapinc.org. Proceeds support C-CAP’s program in the Los Angeles Region.

C-CAP L.A. Program Director, Lisa Fontanesi and James Beard Award-winning Chef Sherry Yard (also a C-CAP National Board Member) join us with the 411 on the edible evening.

Go here to see more about the City of Gold screening.

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Show 160, February 20, 2016: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris and Chef Andrew Gruel, Founder, Slapfish Restaurant Group

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

Next a mouthwatering preview of Saturday’s promisingly scrumptious and always healthy show and not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re doing it right we will always leave you hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s positively a good thing…

Leave it to our local celebrity chefs Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger to have some real fun with Leap Day on February 29th at Border Grill Downtown Los Angeles. For one night only on Leap Day, Mary Sue’s and Susan’s fondly remembered CITY will return for an encore. Mary Sue Milliken takes us back to the beginning in 1981.

Disney’s “OC Chef’s Table” culinary event will be held March 13, 2016 at the Disney Grand Californian Resort & Spa’s Grand Ballroom. The event features 30 of Orange County’s top chefs coming together to create a delectable five-course meal prepared tableside at tables decorated to reflect the personality and brand of each restaurant represented. All proceeds from the event go to Illumination Foundation. Host Chef Andrew Sutton of Napa Rose at Disney’s Grand Californian joins us with all the details.

For the first time ever, Planned Parenthood Los Angeles (PPLA) is recognizing a Restaurateur of the Year for the upcoming 2016 PPLA Food Fare on March 3rd in Santa Monica. This inaugural honor has been proudly presented to Jenny Rush, head and founder of the Blue Plate Restaurant Group in Santa Monica and Los Angeles. Honoree Jenny Rush is our guest.

Berlin Bistro, a favorite casual dining destination in Long Beach’s eclectic East Village neighborhood, is partnering with the Art Theatre and DINE LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week, in bringing attention to the very important issue of edible food waste and to raise vitally needed funds for local non-profit Food Finders food rescue organization. The benefit on March 6th is a special screening of the highly-praised documentary, Just Eat It. A Food Waste Story followed by a specialty multi-course “Root-to-Stem” lunch created by Berlin Bistro’s chef, Tim Balen. Chef Tim and the Producer of DINE LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week, Terri Henry, join us with the 411.

Hundreds of premium wine varieties, sweet and savory chocolate confections, gourmet food samples from acclaimed Pechanga Resort & Casino restaurants, live music, a silent auction and helping out a good cause are all on the agenda for February 26 and 27 at Pechanga Resort & Casino. Tickets for the 8th annual Chocolate Decadence and Pechanga Wine Festival are on sale now. Proceeds from both events benefit Habitat for Humanity Inland Valley. Pechanga Resort & Casino’s Executive Banquet Chef, Colin McGinley, joins us with all the sweet and savory details.

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

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Show 160, February 20, 2016: Mary Sue Milliken, Border Grill, Los Angeles, Santa Monica and Las Vegas

Mary Sue MillikenLeave it to our local celebrity chefs and Food Network favorites, Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger, to have some real fun with Leap Day on February 29th at Border Grill Downtown Los Angeles. For one night only on Leap Day, Mary Sue’s and Susan’s fondly remembered CITY will return for an encore.

“One giant leap for restaurateurs. The year was 1981 when two newly minted chefs named Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger opened a 39-seat restaurant off Melrose Avenue with a worldview that would catapult their careers – CITY. Now 35 years later, the “Too Hot Tamales” are throwing it back to host the return of CITY Night on Leap Day, Monday, February 29th at 6:00 p.m.”

“For one night Border Grill Downtown Los Angeles warps to the 1980’s with a prix-fixe selection from the CITY menu repertoire that introduced Los Angeles eaters to radical flavors and signature dishes from Thailand, India, Italy, France and Greece with French-inspired technique. Nostalgic new wave diners and the uninitiated curious can enjoy the limited engagement at $125 per person.”

Mary Sue Milliken takes us back to the beginning in 1981.

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Show 160, February 20, 2016: Mary Sue Milliken, Border Grill, Los Angeles, Santa Monica and Las Vegas Continues…

Mary Sue MillikenLeave it to our local celebrity chefs and Food Network favorites, Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger, to have some real fun with Leap Day on February 29th at Border Grill Downtown Los Angeles. For one night only on Leap Day, Mary Sue’s and Susan’s fondly remembered CITY will return for an encore.

James Beard Award-winner Mary Sue Milliken is well-know to the audience of the “SoCal Restaurant Show.” She is a pioneer in Food TV and also the co-founder and co-executive chef of the hugely successful Border Grill restaurants (and truck) in Los Angeles, Las Vegas and Santa Monica. She is also an active volunteer for The James Beard Foundation in her prominent position on the Board of Trustees as a Board Member.

The 10th Annual Vegas Uncork’d by Bon Appetit is coming up the Weekend of April 29th. As they have been for each previous year Mary Sue and Susan are involved in a lot of the culinary events, including a Tequila tasting dinner at Border Grill in the Forum Shops on Saturday, April 30th.

For the 2nd year Mary Sue Milliken is riding in the Chefs Cycle California event to raise funds for Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry effort. Last year her participation raised $14,000 and the goal for 2016 is $20,000. Go Mary Sue…!

 

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