Show 162, March 5, 2016: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris and Chef Andrew Gruel, Founder, Slapfish Restaurant Group

Andy Harris and Andrew Gruel at the Pechanga Wine Festival for Angels Radio AM830 KLAAExecutive 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.

Great to see so many listeners last Saturday at the 8th Annual Pechanga Wine Festival at the Pechanga Resort & Casino in Wine Country Temecula. Thanks so very much for supporting the good work of Habitat for Humanity.

We’re going to be talking about it on March 12th but Chef Josiah Citrin is hosting an exclusive culinary celebration at Melisse in support of the ment’or BKB Foundation on Sunday. March 13th. It’s seven incredible courses of contemporary Parisian fare prepared by a dream team of six guest chefs. Reservations for the limited, two-seatings (5 and 8:00 p.m.) can be made via Open Table or by calling 310.395.0881.

Next an ear-catching preview of Saturday’s inspiringly decadent 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 actually a good thing…

What’s new, and fresh, in the world of fruits and vegetables? Glad you asked. Joining us for an update is our resident Produce authority, Robert Schueller of Melissa’s World Variety Produce. For starters the incredible Ojai Pixie Tangerines are back and there is a new, distinctive Dragon Fruit from Israel that’s sweet. And wonderful grapes are now available outside of the Summer season.

Chef Jason Montelibano at EATS Kitchen & Bar at Hotel Irvine (a locals’ favorite) in Irvine is at it again culinarily speaking. He’s just rolled out an all-new Good EATS Sunday Brunch. There is an epic $14 build-you-own Bloody Mary bar and Mimosa flights. Look for the just-debuted, over-the-top menu items including Shrimp and Grits, and Cinnamon Crunch French Toast.

On Saturday evening, March 12, as part of Cochon 555 L.A., Chef Steven Fretz will be hosting, along with six other celebrity chefs, a refined three-hour culinary experience, the Chef’s Course Dinner Series, at Church Key in West Hollywood. It begins with a reception featuring a selection of passed hors d’oeuvres followed by a seated dinner and premium wine pairings. The benefit dinner is limited to 40 seats. Tickets are available online at $125 per person and 100 percent of the proceeds will benefit Piggy Bank.

Moruno, from Executive Chef Chris Feldmeier and Managing Partner David Rosoff (formerly of Mozza) is now open at The Original Farmers Market in Los Angeles. Bringing a unique style of upscale casual dining to one of Los Angeles’ historic sites, the warm, vibrant flavors of the southern Spanish inspired menu are supported by a stellar wine list focused on Spain, the deep south of France, plus various islands and volcanoes. Executive Chef Chris Feldmeier is our guest.

Orange County Restaurant Week, organized by the OC Restaurant Association, will celebrate its eighth year as the region’s highest profile culinary event, with the 2016 Orange County Restaurant Week to be held from Sunday, March 6th through Saturday, March 12thThis year, 140 restaurants in 21 Orange County cities will offer a wide variety of options, from casual and family-friendly establishments, to upscale and fine dining. Restaurateur Alicia Whitney of SeaLegs Wine Bar in Huntington Beach (a participating OC Restaurant Week restaurant) joins us.

Pulitzer Prize-winning food critic Jonathan Gold will join local non-profit C-CAP LA (Careers through Culinary Arts Program) at their upcoming fundraiser evening 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. C-CAP L.A. Program Director, Lisa Fontanesi and James Beard Award-winning Chef and C-CAP Board Member, Sherry Yard, join us with the 411 on the evening.

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

Play

Show 162, March 5, 2016: Steven Fretz, Executive Chef and Partner, Church Key, West Hollywood

Steven FretzOn Saturday, March 12, as part of Cochon 555 L.A., Chef Steven Fretz (our guest) will be hosting, along with six other celebrity chefs, a refined three-hour culinary experience, the Chef’s Course Dinner Series, at Church Key in West Hollywood. It begins with a reception featuring a selection of passed hors d’oeuvres followed by a seated dinner and premium wine pairings. The benefit dinner is limited to 44 seats. Tickets are available online at $125 per person and 100 percent of the proceeds will benefit Piggy Bank.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel is preparing a course with a Spring theme. Also on the distinguished chefs’ team is Ray Garcia (Broken Spanish) and Eric Greenspan (Mare, The Roof on Wilshire, Greenspan’s Grilled Cheese.)

Piggy Bank seeks to build a future for family farming with the goal of changing the future of food and promoting long-term farming sustainability. Piggy Bank will raise heritage breed pigs to be gifted to new farmers and culinary schools, assist new family farms with herd development and help existing farms challenged by disaster.

Play

March 5: Melissa’s Produce, EATS Kitchen and Bar, Steven Fretz, Moruno, SeaLegs Wine Bar, C-CAP

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris and Chef Andrew Gruel, Founder, Slapfish Restaurant Group
Segment Two: Robert Schueller, Produce Authority, Melissa’s World Variety Produce Part One
Segment Three: Robert Schueller, Produce Authority, Melissa’s World Variety Produce Part Two
Segment Four: Chef Jason Montelibano, EATS Kitchen & Bar, Irvine
Segment Five: Steven Fretz, Executive Chef and Partner, Church Key, West Hollywood
Segment Six: Executive Chef Chris Feldmeier, Moruno, Original Farmers Market
Segment Seven: Alicia Whitney, Proprietress, SeaLegs Wine Bar, Huntington Beach
Segment Eight: C-CAP L.A. Program Director Lisa Fontanesi and Celebrity Chef Sherry Yard

Andy Harris and Andrew Gruel at the Pechanga Wine Festival for Angels Radio AM830 KLAAExecutive 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.

Great to see so many listeners last Saturday at the 8th Annual Pechanga Wine Festival at the Pechanga Resort & Casino in Wine Country Temecula. Thanks so very much for supporting the good work of Habitat for Humanity.

We’re going to be talking about it on March 12th but Chef Josiah Citrin is hosting an exclusive culinary celebration at Melisse in support of the ment’or BKB Foundation on Sunday. March 13th. It’s seven incredible courses of contemporary Parisian fare prepared by a dream team of six guest chefs. Reservations for the limited, two-seatings (5 and 8:00 p.m.) can be made via Open Table or by calling 310.395.0881.

Next an ear-catching preview of Saturday’s inspiringly decadent 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 actually a good thing…

What’s new, and fresh, in the world of fruits and vegetables? Glad you asked. Joining us for an update is our resident Produce authority, Robert Schueller of Melissa’s World Variety Produce. For starters the incredible Ojai Pixie Tangerines are back and there is a new, distinctive Dragon Fruit from Israel that’s sweet. And wonderful grapes are now available outside of the Summer season.

Chef Jason Montelibano at EATS Kitchen & Bar at Hotel Irvine (a locals’ favorite) in Irvine is at it again culinarily speaking. He’s just rolled out an all-new Good EATS Sunday Brunch. There is an epic $14 build-you-own Bloody Mary bar and Mimosa flights. Look for the just-debuted, over-the-top menu items including Shrimp and Grits, and Cinnamon Crunch French Toast.

On Saturday evening, March 12, as part of Cochon 555 L.A., Chef Steven Fretz will be hosting, along with six other celebrity chefs, a refined three-hour culinary experience, the Chef’s Course Dinner Series, at Church Key in West Hollywood. It begins with a reception featuring a selection of passed hors d’oeuvres followed by a seated dinner and premium wine pairings. The benefit dinner is limited to 40 seats. Tickets are available online at $125 per person and 100 percent of the proceeds will benefit Piggy Bank.

Moruno, from Executive Chef Chris Feldmeier and Managing Partner David Rosoff (formerly of Mozza) is now open at the Original Farmers Market in Los Angeles. Bringing a unique style of upscale casual dining to one of Los Angeles’ historic sites, the warm, vibrant flavors of the southern Spanish inspired menu is supported by a stellar wine list focused on Spain, the deep south of France, plus various islands and volcanoes. Executive Chef Chris Feldmeier is our guest.

Orange County Restaurant Week, organized by the OC Restaurant Association, will celebrate its eighth year as the region’s highest profile culinary event, with the 2016 Orange County Restaurant Week to be held from Sunday, March 6th through Saturday, March 12thThis year, 140 restaurants in 21 Orange County cities will offer a wide variety of options, from casual and family-friendly establishments, to upscale and fine dining. Restaurateur Alicia Whitney of SeaLegs Wine Bar in Huntington Beach (a participating OC Restaurant Week restaurant) joins us.

Pulitzer Prize-winning food critic Jonathan Gold will join local non-profit C-CAP LA (Careers through Culinary Arts Program) at their upcoming fundraiser evening 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. C-CAP L.A. Program Director, Lisa Fontanesi, joins us with the 411 on the evening.

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

Robert Schueller of Melissa's World Variety Produce in the AM830 KLAA StudioWhat’s new, and fresh, in the world of fruits and vegetables? Glad you asked. Joining us is our resident Produce authority, Robert Schueller of Melissa’s World Variety Produce.

For starters the incredible Ojai Pixie Tangerines are back and there is a new, distinctive Dragon Fruit from Israel that’s actually sweet. And wonderful, flavorful grapes are now available outside of the Summer season.

Savor the tasty, delicate treat of tree-ripened Ojai Pixie Tangerines bursting with sunshine-sweet flavor and juice. This seedless variety is the result of open pollination of Kincy, King and Dancy mandarins. Popular backyard trees in Ojai, California, they bear small to medium-sized citrus, having pebbly textured, yellow-orange rinds with loose skins that peel easily. The segments separate neatly for a quick snack, making them a great choice for eating out of hand.

Grapes from South America are now deliciously available in the non-Summer season. Highlights are the Melissa’s Muscato grapes (red and green Summer flavors.)

Green to amber-green Muscato seedless grapes arrive with a crisp, firm texture and a delicious tangy sweetness. Toss in fruit salads for texture, color, and a burst of juicy flavor. Succulently delicious— the ideal picnic or lunchbox treat.

Exclusively available from Melissa’s, Red Muscato grapes have a bright, rosy red color, firm texture with a very high sugar content. Slightly sweeter than its juicy sweet green-skinned cousin, Red Muscato grapes are a great addition to any fresh fruit ‘n cheese platter, sprinkled on yogurt or tossed in a green salad. This variety’s refreshing sweetness makes it a healthy out-of-hand snack food for kids and smart adults alike!

Jason MontelibanoChef Jason Montelibano at EATS Kitchen & Bar at Hotel Irvine (a locals’ favorite) in Irvine is at it again. He’s just rolled out an all-new Good EATS Sunday Brunch starting at 11:30 a.m.

There is an epic $14 build-you-own Bloody Mary bar and Mimosa flights. The Mimosa flight arrives with four, 6 oz. Mimosas. Passion Fruit and Blood Orange was a recent selection along with Strawberry Lemon. Look for the just-debuted, over-the-top menu items including Shrimp and Grits, and Cinnamon Crunch French Toast.

A “SoCal Restaurant Show” favorite is the Chilaquiles con Pollo. With the chicken is a sunny-side up egg, fried tortillas, roasted tomato salsa, lime sour cream, avocado and cotija cheese.

There is indoor and outdoor seating available. A cozy fire pit, too. With the lush landscaping and thoughtful design you’d never know you’re a long fly ball from the 405 San Diego Freeway.

Chef Jason knew he was destined to be a chef from an early age. From starting culinary school as a teenager, to refining his skills in some of the best kitchens in Southern California, his love for chef-driven, sustainable cuisine has been honed through years of hard work and dedication. His passion for international flavors and market-fresh ingredients are on full display in every single plate that leaves his kitchen.

Steven FretzOn Saturday, March 12, as part of Cochon 555 L.A., Chef Steven Fretz (our guest) will be hosting, along with six other celebrity chefs, a refined three-hour culinary experience, the Chef’s Course Dinner Series, at Church Key in West Hollywood. It begins with a reception featuring a selection of passed hors d’oeuvres followed by a seated dinner and premium wine pairings. The benefit dinner is limited to 44 seats. Tickets are available online at $125 per person and 100 percent of the proceeds will benefit Piggy Bank.

Our own Andrew Gruel is preparing a course with a Spring theme. Also on the distinguished chefs’ team is Ray Garcia (Broken Spanish) and Eric Greenspan (Mare, The Roof on Wilshire, Greenspan’s Grilled Cheese.)

Piggy Bank seeks to build a future for family farming with the goal of changing the future of food and promoting long-term farming sustainability. Piggy Bank will raise heritage breed pigs to be gifted to new farmers and culinary schools, assist new family farms with herd development and help existing farms challenged by disaster.

Chris FeldmeierMoruno, from Executive Chef Chris Feldmeier and Managing Partner David Rosoff (formerly of Mozza) is now open at The Original Farmers Market in Los Angeles. Bringing a unique style of upscale casual dining to one of Los Angeles’ historic sites, the warm, vibrant flavors of the southern Spanish inspired menu is supported by a stellar wine list focused on Spain, the deep south of France, plus various islands and volcanoes. Sherry will also feature prominently as will Morunos’ own proprietary vermouth called “Vermina.”

A Moruno, which was inspired by the duos trip to Spain, is a kebab cooked over live coals and marinated in spices (cumin, paprika, turmeric, peppers, etc.) highlighting Moorish and North African culinary influences.

The bar program from Dave Kupchinsky utilizes both pre-bottled and on tap cocktails in an efficient and creative manner and will run the deepest within the boutique upstairs Bar Vermut (coming soon) which will also feature its own unique menu.

By folding fine dining principles into a vibrant and welcoming environment, Moruno (and its sibling restaurant Bar Moruno opening soon at Grand Central Market) delivers great value through its’ unique and approachable brand of hospitality.

Executive Chef Chris Feldmeier is our guest.

Alicia WhitneyOrange County Restaurant Week, organized by the OC Restaurant Association, will celebrate its eighth year as the region’s highest profile culinary event, with the 2016 Orange County Restaurant Week to be held from Sunday, March 6th through Saturday, March 12thThis year, 140 restaurants in 21 Orange County cities will offer a wide variety of options, from casual and family-friendly establishments, to upscale and fine dining.

During the weeklong event, the participating restaurants will offer special three-course menus, many with a cocktail or signature item included at no additional charge. Each restaurant will have the freedom and flexibility to showcase its best offerings by talented chefs who will, no doubt, personalize each menu to reflect their individual culinary style. Participating restaurants will offer prix-fixe menus within the following price categories: lunch for $10, $15 or $20, and dinner for $20, $30, $40, $50 or $80.

Restaurateur Alicia Whitney of SeaLegs Wine Bar in Huntington Beach (a participating OC Restaurant Week restaurant and Golden Foodie Award-recipient) joins us.

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.

On his many ventures to discover hidden gastronomic gems throughout the city, Gold frequently encounters underserved communities and the kids who live in them. Wanting to do more to create opportunities for the local youth, Gold and Laura Gabbert, the director of City of Gold, happily partnered with C-CAP LA on this project.

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.

The 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, joins us with the 411 on the edible evening.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris and Chef Andrew Gruel, Founder, Slapfish Restaurant Group
Segment Two: Robert Schueller, Produce Authority, Melissa’s World Variety Produce Part One
Segment Three: Robert Schueller, Produce Authority, Melissa’s World Variety Produce Part Two
Segment Four: Chef Jason Montelibano, EATS Kitchen & Bar, Irvine
Segment Five: Steven Fretz, Executive Chef and Partner, Church Key, West Hollywood
Segment Six: Executive Chef Chris Feldmeier, Moruno, Original Farmers Market
Segment Seven: Alicia Whitney, Proprietress, SeaLegs Wine Bar, Huntington Beach
Segment Eight: C-CAP L.A. Program Director Lisa Fontanesi and Celebrity Chef Sherry Yard

December 21: Troy Johnson, Got Kosher, Aaron Fry, Susan Feniger, Brian Malarkey, Brian Malarkey,

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Troy Johnson, Editor-at-Large & Food Critic of San Diego Magazine Part One
Segment Three: Troy Johnson, Editor-at-Large & Food Critic of San Diego Magazine Part Two
Segment Four: Alain Cohen of Got Kosher Café & Bakery, Los Angeles
Segment Five: Aaron Fry, Honeymoon Dining in Maui
Segment Six: Celebrity Chef Susan Feniger of The Border Grills and Mud Hen Tavern
Segment Seven: Executive Chef Brian Malarkey of Enlightened Hospitality Group, San Diego Part One
Segment Eight: Executive Chef Brian Malarkey of Enlightened Hospitality Group, San Diego Part Two

Update on the benefit at The Church Key on Sunday, December 8th to aid the unfortunate victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. The evening raised $10,000 which will get into the proper hands to support the relief effort. This event came together very quickly so kudos to all involved!

What's Cooking with Jet Tila and Travis RodgersThanks for all the supportive words about “What’s Cooking with Travis and Chef Jet Tila” heard just after 7:50 a.m. on Friday morning on AM 830 KLAA as part of “The Travis Rodgers Show.” Travis is taking a well-earned Holiday break. The segment will return just after 7:50 a.m. on Friday, January 4th. The previous features are all available for your listening pleasure within the “Media” area of the “SoCal Restaurant Show” Website.

Chef Jet and Producer Andy preview the show. This week we’re sending the well-deserved love to our listeners in San Diego. Troy Johnson, the Restaurant Editor of San Diego Magazine is with us to share what’s new in San Diego. We’ll also talk with “Top Chef” alum Brian Malarkey of Enlightened Hospitality. He’s bringing one of his successful San Diego restaurant concepts to the Sunset Strip.

Troy JohnsonTroy Johnson, the Food Editor of San Diego Magazine, represents the new breed of youthful restaurant journalists with a point-of-view. It’s, fortunately, not an elitist approach and Troy aims to make restaurant-going accessible for all.

You perhaps remember him on Food TV from his Cooking Channel series, “Crave.” He’s also one of the regular judges on Food Network’s new Sunday evening “Guy’s (Fieri) Grocery Games.”

There is a lot happening on the San Diego restaurant scene. The big noise is that chef and restaurateur Richard Blais is leaving his base in Atlanta to open Juniper & Ivy in the Little Italy area of San Diego. It will seat 200 when open so this is an ambitious project! Chef Blais is probably best known nationally for his multiple seasons on Bravo’s “Top Chef.”

Celebrity Chef Brian Malarkey (of Bravo’s “Top Chef” & ABC’s “The Taste”,) a multiple concept restaurant operator in San Diego, is bringing his Herringbone concept to The Mondrian Hotel on The Sunset Strip in West Hollywood in early 2014. Troy talks about Chef Brian’s history in San Diego and what his establishments are all about. The original Herringbone is in La Jolla.

The Headquarters, a new development in Downtown San Diego with destination restaurants is creating a lot of attention. Nancy Silverton’s Pizzeria Mozza from Hollywood is one on the anchor tenants there already attracting lots of buzz. It’s the former Police Department Headquarters and there is even an original cell preserved for visitors to see.

Avant Restaurant in San DiegoAfter a long run (opened in 1968) as a high-end destination restaurant of celebration El Bizcocho at the Rancho Bernardo Inn has been reborn as the more contemporary Avant. San Diego star chef Gavin Kaysen was an alum of El Bizcocho. He’s now overseeing all the Café Bouluds for Daniel Boulud in New York!

Troy notes that the Hatch Design Group worked on a $2.5 million budget to create the new space. “The mercy killing of El Bizcocho clears the way for a new era at Avant” is the title of Troy’s recent review in San Diego Magazine.

If you think Tunisian fare is the same as the foods of Morocco then you perhaps need a refresher course. No eating with the fingers or belly dancers here. It’s actually more Mediterranean and North African fare.

Alain Cohen of Got Kosher Cafe and BakeryAlain Cohen of Got Kosher Café & Bakery located in Los Angeles Borscht Belt on Pico Blvd. joins us to give a quick education. Don’t let the “Kosher” part or the name scare you. The Jews were in Tunisia before Muhammad or the rise of Islam.

The tasty Merguez sausage with harissa appetizer is house-made.

One of Got Kosher’s specialties is “Shwar-guez.” It’s their take on schwarma. It’s ground beef seasoned with their merguez sausage spices and grilled on a schwarma pit.

Tunisian Couscous is also a popular specialty. The versions are Couscous au Poulet, Couscous Masson (with braised beef and beef meatballs,) Couscous Royal ( with chicken, beef, lamb brochettes and merguez,) and Vegetarian Couscous.

They also house-bake some incredible varieties of challah

It’s Christmas / New Year’s Holiday vacation time and that means a lot of getaways to Maui. We have a mouth-watering Lahaina dining report from an informed, recent visitor.

Aaron Fry just returned from his glorious honeymoon in Maui. Aaron is a master bartender as well as a senior Board Operator right here at AM 830 KLAA. We’re turning the microphone around on him this morning.

Fleetwoods on Front StreetAaron and his new bride enjoyed a couple of visits to Fleetwood’s on Front Street in the heart of Old Lahaina. The second level of the 10,000 square foot establishment affords an incredible ocean view and there is live music nightly. The principal is Mick Fleetwood, the well-know rock drummer. When he’s not touring he spends most of his time on Maui.

Although it’s a casual setting they are equally serious about their food. The chef advisor is Scott Leibfried (who you’ll remember as one of the two sous chefs for Gordon Ramsay on Fox’s “Hell’s Kitchen.”) Chef Scott continues with the project.

Look for “Today’s Local Fish” and the 10 oz. Grilled Filet with Big Island Hamakua Mushrooms as standout dishes.

Maui Brewing Company CoCoNut PorTeRAaron is a craft beer aficionado so also on his Maui menu was a stop at the celebrated brewpub of the Maui Brewing Co. This is the most successful craft brewery in The Islands and quite a story. Their only “problem” is that they can’t keep up with demand on The Mainland. They can their most popular styles and they are available in California. One of their signature brews is their award-winning CoCoNut PorTeR. The brewpub features some seasonal styles only available on Maui.

The food is seriously good, too, and a big attraction for locals. They even make their own salad dressings. You can’t go wrong with their pizzas or the Kalua Pork Sliders.

Susan Feniger of Mud Hen TavernChef Susan Feniger of Border Grill and Food Network’s “Too Hot Tamales” fame is back with us to talk about the revamping of Susan Feniger’s Street in Hollywood. It’s been refurbished as the Mud Hen Tavern. The concept is more of a comfortable neighborhood bar and restaurant where regulars can come and hang out more than one time per week.

As with Street the Executive Chef and Partner is Kajsa Alger. Some of Street’s classic favorites remain on the menu including Kaya Toast. A rotating collection of sixteen craft beers is available on tap.

Susan enthusiastically recommends the Hangover Burger with a fried egg and bacon and the decadent Cinnamon Roll Bread Pudding for dessert. Also there are plenty of offerings for the vegetarian-inclined.

Brian MalarkeyYou know Chef Brian Malarkey from “Top Chef: Season 3, Miami” on Bravo and Season 1 of ABC’s “The Taste.” In real life he’s also a highly successful restaurateur in San Diego (and Scottsdale and Austin) with major financial backing.

In a bold move he’s bringing an expanded Herringbone (La Jolla) to The Mondrian on the fabled Sunset Strip in January. After a major gut-rehab it’s replacing the pricey Asia de Cuba at this hip & happening boutique luxury hotel. The panoramic 180 degree view from the restaurant toward the coast, now improved, is pretty spectacular. He’s responsible for all foodservice at The Hotel including in-room dining and functions.

The food is Herringbone’s own “Fish Meats Field” cuisine. A favorite is Pork Belly with wood roasted sunchokes, manila clams, and calvados and green apple jus.

Executive Chef Brian Mararkey of Enlightened Hospitality Group encores for a second segment. His growing collection of restaurants, with a San Diego base, includes Searsucker, Herringbone (La Jolla and January opening in West Hollywood,) Gabardine, and Green Acre.

Chef Brian has cooked in Los Angeles previously. Very early in his professional career he was in the kitchen at Michel Richard’s Citrus.

Chef Brian very honestly explains how he paid his dues during his 20s and 30s before becoming the executive chef at The Oceanaire Seafood Room in San Diego. That eventually led to his casting on Bravo’s “Top Chef.” He’s surprised that so many young people graduating from culinary schools think they can just walk into being celebrities on food TV without a proper foundation.

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Troy Johnson, Editor-at-Large & Food Critic of San Diego Magazine Part One
Segment Three: Troy Johnson, Editor-at-Large & Food Critic of San Diego Magazine Part Two
Segment Four: Alain Cohen of Got Kosher Café & Bakery, Los Angeles
Segment Five: Aaron Fry, Honeymoon Dining in Maui
Segment Six: Celebrity Chef Susan Feniger of The Border Grills and Mud Hen Tavern
Segment Seven: Executive Chef Brian Malarkey of Enlightened Hospitality Group, San Diego Part One
Segment Eight: Executive Chef Brian Malarkey of Enlightened Hospitality Group, San Diego Part Two

Show 51, December 7, 2013: Devon Espinosa, Bar Director at The Church Key

Devon EspinosaDevon Espinosa (a C-CAP graduate) is one of the rising young stars among the master bartenders in the West. He created the cocktail program at ink. and Pour Vous and he’s the bar chef for the new The Church Key on the Sunset Strip. Some of his cocktails are canned for freshness.

Devon is also one of the organizers of a high-profile benefit at The Church Key on Sunday, December 8 from 5 to 9:00 p.m. for Typhoon Haiyan relief efforts. An impressive line-up of chefs and bartenders are coming together to raise the vitally needed funds. Look for celebrity chefs Eric Greenspan, Kris Morningstar, Ray Garcia and Steve Samson among many others.

Play

December 7: Carla Hall, Barbara Fairchild, Cookies for a Koz, Devon Espinosa, Donald Wressell, Brad A. Johnson, Dean Thomas

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Barbara Fairchild, former long-time Editor of Bon Appetit Magazine, educator, food journalist, and cookbook author Part One
Segment Three: Barbara Fairchild, former long-time Editor of Bon Appetit Magazine, educator, food journalist, and cookbook author Part Two
Segment Four: Carla Hall of ABC’s “The Chew” and Zov Karamardian of Zov’s Bistro in Tustin
Segment Five: Devon Espinosa, Bar Director at The Church Key
Segment Six: Pastry Chef Donald Wressell of Guittard Chocolate Co.
Segment Seven: Brad A. Johnson, restaurant critic for The Orange County Register
Segment Eight: Chef Dean Thomas of Europa Village Winery and The Inn at Europa Village in Temecula

Lechon Porchetta by Susan ParkYou can aid the victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines and enjoy some great Filipino food. There is a huge Filipino community right here in Los Angeles County.

In addition to the high profile benefit for typhoon relief at The Church Key on the Sunset Strip on Sunday (which we’ll be talking about later in the show) there is a more populist fundraiser at Bamboo Bistro in Panorama City on Sunday, Dec. 15th from 4 to 8:00 p.m.

Pinoy food will be there in abundance expertly prepared by L.A. chefs including Chef Mayet Cristobal, the Executive Chef of the Getty Museum. She will be serving Beef Short Rib Adobo. The minimum donation is a modest $20 per adult and there will be live music.

Barbara FairchildThe long-time former editor of Bon Appetit Magazine, Barbara Fairchild, is back with us reporting from New York. Barbara is also an educator, best-selling cookbook author, food and travel journalist and much-in-demand speaker.

Barbara has recently had a couple of culinary excursions to the San Francisco Bay Area and will report on dining spots she enjoyed that merit your attention. She will also speak about an unusual evening she was part of honoring San Francisco’s STARS, a long-departed celebrity chef driven restaurant that, in it’s day, was the Spago of San Francisco. The proprietor/executive chef Jeremiah Tower (now a resident of Mexico) was in attendance.

Roberta Koz WilsonIt’s Holiday Time and our thoughts turn to incredible, fresh-baked, small batch, high-quality cookies as special gifts. That can only mean a chat with Roberta Wilson (jazz saxophonist great Dave Koz’s sister) the force behind Cookies for a Koz. Ten per cent of the proceeds are donated to the Starlight Children’s Foundation. Dave Koz is a Global Goodwill Ambassador for them.

Roberta’s and Dave’s late mother, Audrey, perfected the recipe for a great chocolate chip cookie and that’s the legacy of the company. The much-appreciated cookies were a door-opener all over town for the youthful Dave as his career was just beginning.

Carla HallFood fans know Chef Carla Hall as the “Hootie Hoo” lady and fan favorite from multiple seasons of Bravo’s “Top Chef.” She is now the co-host of ABC’s daytime lifetime series, “The Chew.” Last week “The Chew” celebrated their 500th episode and the show continues to gain in popularity. Carla also is the author of Cooking with Love: Comfort Food That Hugs You, newly available in paperback.

Carla is being honored by Zov Karamardian of Zov’s Bistro in Tustin at her Culinary Concert to benefit the James Beard Foundation on Sunday, February 9th. It’s a great holiday gift for that special foodie in your life.

That Sunday Carla and Zov will conduct a highly entertaining cooking class for the guests followed by a lavish lunch. Carla will be available to sign copies of her book and interact with the guests. It all starts at Noon.

For more info and to make reservations please call 714.838.8855 ext. 21

Devon EspinosaDevon Espinosa (a C-CAP graduate) is one of the rising young stars among the master bartenders in the West. He created the cocktail program at ink. and Pour Vous and he’s the bar chef for the new The Church Key on the Sunset Strip. Some of his cocktails are canned for freshness.

Devon is also one of the organizers of a high-profile benefit at The Church Key on Sunday, December 8 from 5 to 9:00 p.m. for Typhoon Haiyan relief efforts. An impressive line-up of chefs and bartenders are coming together to raise the vitally needed funds. Look for celebrity chefs Eric Greenspan, Kris Morningstar, Ray Garcia and Steve Samson among many others.

Donald WressellThere really is no finer pastry chef in America than the pleasantly low-key Donald Wressell. He was the opening executive pastry chef at the Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills. This is the luxury property where the majority of the out-of-town Academy Award nominees stay. Every year Chef Donald would create incredible individual chocolate show-pieces celebrating each of the “Best Picture” nominees. These elaborate pieces where then featured, via photography, in the Oscar coverage beamed across the globe.

Donald has competed in the most prestigious international pastry competitions and, most recently, has coached, too. He’s judged pastry chefs for competition shows on Food Network.

He’s currently the pastry chef for the proudly American chocolate company, Guittard Chocolate Co. Guittard is based in Burlingame but Chef Donald has a test kitchen and research facility here in Los Angeles. He also teaches classes for professional pastry chefs and candy makers.

In January he’ll create the sure to be dazzling Birthday Cake for The City of Beverly Hills’ 100th Anniversary. He created another cake spectacular for Beverly Hills’ Diamond Jubilee 25 years ago while he was at The Four Seasons.

Blossom Restaurant at the Aria in Las VegasA few weeks ago Brad A. Johnson, the James Beard Award-winning restaurant critic for the Orange County Register, was with us to talk about his first 4-Star review. It’s Blossom restaurant at Aria Resort in Las Vegas.

Brad is back with us to explain his criteria for a 4-Star restaurant review and also talk about the new crop of ultra-luxe Chinese restaurants on The Strip. It’s some of the most elegant Chinese fine-dining outside of China and designed for highly discriminating (and wealthy) Chinese guests!

Dean ThomasChef Dean Thomas is the Executive Chef de Cuisine for the Europa Village Winery in Temecula and also serves as the Innkeeper for the Inn at Europa Village (along with his wife, Nicole.) His multi-course breakfasts, reserved exclusively for guests at The Inn, are unrivaled in the Valley. Many of the ingredients actually come from the vineyard property and change with the season. Chef Dean has extensive credentials as an executive chef for luxury hotel properties.

Chef Dean is the unofficial executive concierge for Wine Country Temecula. When it comes to directing guests to the wineries and restaurants best suited to the visitors’ wishes Dean’s advice is the gold standard.

Chef Dean shares with us the specifics on an independent restaurant in Temecula as well as a winery restaurant that are both on his highly recommended list. He also talks about a Slow Food event he is hosting on December 12th featuring local artisan food products and cooking demonstrations.

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Barbara Fairchild, former long-time Editor of Bon Appetit Magazine, educator, food journalist, and cookbook author Part One
Segment Three: Barbara Fairchild, former long-time Editor of Bon Appetit Magazine, educator, food journalist, and cookbook author Part Two
Segment Four: Carla Hall of ABC’s “The Chew” and Zov Karamardian of Zov’s Bistro in Tustin
Segment Five: Devon Espinosa, Bar Director at The Church Key
Segment Six: Pastry Chef Donald Wressell of Guittard Chocolate Co.
Segment Seven: Brad A. Johnson, restaurant critic for The Orange County Register
Segment Eight: Chef Dean Thomas of Europa Village Winery and The Inn at Europa Village in Temecula