Show 222, May 6, 2017: Tim Rooney, Proprietor, Rooney’s Irish Pub, Orcutt, CA

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.


Show 216, March 25, 2017: Chef Staci Miller’s The Miller’s Table, Oceanside, CA

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

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

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

We’ll meet the passionate Chef Staci.


Show 215, March 18, 2017: Rick Reich, Proprietor, W.I.N.O, Brix at The Shore, Long Beach

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

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

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

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

We pull W.I.N.O Rick out of the kitchen (and from behind the well-stocked bar) to tell us all about it.


Show 211, February 18, 2017: Glen Hutton, Co-Owner, Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks, Richmond, B.C.

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

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

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

One of their distinctive and popular styles is Beam Me Up – Espresso Milk Stout. “This is the perfect marriage of espresso coffee and a delicate stout with a smooth, creamy sweetness from Lactose. Made in collaboration with Notch Coffee Co. out of Vancouver.”

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


Show 200, December 3, 2016: Brewmaster Victor Novak, Golden Road Brewing

Victor Novak and his Blueberry Mocha Stout from Golden Road BrewingOrange County craft beer enthusiasts know Victor Novak as the long-time (15 years), acclaimed head brewer of Taps in Brea. He’s also responsible for graciously mentoring many of the prominent young brewers among the new wave of award-winning OC craft breweries.

In late 2014 he joined the brewing team at the fast-growing Golden Road Brewing and is now their brewmaster.

“In 2011, beer enthusiasts Meg Gill and Tony Yanow founded Golden Road Brewing to bring fresh beer to the local market in the most sustainable way possible. Golden Road is committed to engaging and supporting the growing community of socially-minded beer enthusiasts.” “Golden Road’s year-round offerings include Point the Way IPA, Golden Road Hefeweizen, Get Up Offa That Brown and Wolf Among Weeds IPA. Along with the core beers, Golden Road brewers are constantly experimenting with the freshest ingredients through a collection of rotating, seasonal and limited-edition brews including the Custom IPA Series, a line-up of diverse, hop-forward IPAs.”

A new brewery in Anaheim (across E. Orangewood Ave. from the South entrance to Angel Stadium) with a Tasting Room was added this year with a rotating selection of 20 styles on tap. Victor uses the original 15-barrel system from Golden Road’s original L.A., brewery. Eventually the evolving facility will include a full-service restaurant.

Victor sampled Anaheim’s cult favorite, Blueberry Mocha Stout (extremely limited availability) which was the hit craft beer of this year’s OozeFest in Santa Ana. It uses Golden Road’s Oatmeal Stout in the making.

Head Brewer Victor is tapping a fresh keg with us.


Show 192, October 9, 2016: FOODBEAST’s Partnership with Visit Anaheim

Elie AyrouthFOODBEAST has joined in partnership with Visit Anaheim to promote food tourism in Anaheim. Ethnic delights abound in the City. That also includes visibility for the bourgeoning local craft beer scene. Elie Ayrouth, Co-Founder and Publisher at FOODBEAST is our guest. Cheers…

  • Visit Anaheim’s simple mission has been to share and promote the tourist attractions of the city since 1961, and FOODBEAST have joined in their efforts with an awesome video series that places their national spotlight on the local restaurants, food trucks, and breweries that make Anaheim a unique foodie destination.
  • FOODBEAST Approved, a product of FOODBEAST, is a series of one-minute videos highlighting incredibly unique food items around the globe.

Additionally, FOODBEAST is producing a mini-documentary series focusing on the flourishing craft brewery scene in Anaheim, featuring OC favorites Noble Ale Works, Bruery Terreux, Bottle Logic Brewing, Anaheim Brewery, and new kid on the block UnSung Brewery.


Show 187, September 3, 2016: Wicks Brewing Company, Riverside

Brian Herbertson and Ryan WicksRiverside’s Wicks Brewing Company is one of the largest brewpubs in the Inland Empire with 16 taps, a great rotating guest tap and bottle list, crave-worthy food, live entertainment and one of the only Brew-On-Premise (BOP) systems in California!

Wicks Brewing Co was founded in 2013 with the sole purpose of bringing great craft beer and food to the Inland Empire in an environment that the whole family could enjoy. The Wicks Brewing Co’s brewpub houses a beautiful 7 bbl copper brew house, which is visible from their open floor taproom and restaurant. You will often see their brewers at work creating their next batch of great craft beer!

The elevated pub grub from a modest kitchen is worthy of praise, too. All the sauces and salad dressings are, surprisingly, created in-house. A favorite menu item is the BBQ Pulled Pork Quesadilla with their house-made Black Knight BBQ sauce. For dessert the Root Beer Float is created with Wicks’ own root beer (made with brown sugar and blackstrap molasses.)

Head Brewer Brian sampled the Bard’s Song Pecan Brown Ale in this segment.

Wicks’ Paladin Hoppy Pale Ale is a liberally hopped pale ale. It brought home bronze at the World Beer Cup in 2016 and back-to-back gold at the 2015 and 2016 Los Angeles International Beer Competitions. Copious amounts of citra and cascade hops impart layers of tropical fruit notes and grapefruit aromatics.

Tapping the keg for us are in-studio guests General Manager Ryan Wicks and Head Brewer Brian Herbertson.


Show 187, September 3, 2016: Wicks Brewing Company, Riverside, Part 2

Brian Herbertson and Ryan WicksRiverside’s Wicks Brewing Company is one of the largest brewpubs in the Inland Empire with 16 taps, a great rotating guest tap and bottle list, crave-worthy food, live entertainment and one of the only Brew-On-Premise (BOP) systems in California!

The taproom showcases a 6 station Brew-On-Premise (BOP) system which allows guests the opportunity to brew their own beer under the personal guidance of one of The Wicks’ brewers. A craft beer aficionado can come in and work one-on-one with a Wicks brewer to create their own custom style and flavor profile of craft beer. The guest comes back in a month to bottle the finished beer with personalized labels. The one keg of fresh craft beer makes about 6 cases of 22 ounce bottles. What fun…

Head Brewer Brian sampled the Battle Cry IPA in this segment.

Ryan Wicks is also the Vice President of the Inland Empire Brewers Guild and Brian Herbertson is the Event Chairman. Their inaugural Summer Send Off Beer Festival is Saturday, September 17th at Riverside Municipal Airport.

The Inland Empire Brewers’ Guild is a 501c6 non-profit organization whose mission is to both promote and celebrate beer culture in the Inland Empire.


Show 183, August 6, 2016: Brian Mercer, Founder, Brouwerij West, San Pedro

Brian MercerBrouwerij West is a unique Belgian-inspired craft brewery and venue located in the San Pedro neighborhood of Los Angeles. The company was founded in 2010 by talented brewer Brian Mercer and is now led by Mercer and his partner Dave Holop. Brouwerij West’s new home opened in February 2016 in a former Port Warehouse originally built by the U.S. Navy during World War II.

Brouwerij West’s operation encompasses 26,000 sq. ft. of the Crafted at the Port of Los Angeles facility, including 8,000 sq. ft. devoted to visitor use for its Tasting Room and events, as well as a 17,000 sq. ft. outdoor courtyard / beer garden.

Brouwerij West brews its beers using traditional ingredients and methods mixed with creative inspiration to produce its own take on classic Belgian-style ales. Brouwerij West’s new facility is covered with solar panels and generates more electricity than it uses, and its mash filter-based brewery uses 30% less water than traditional breweries.

On Saturday, August 20th is the 3rd in the series of Summer Popfuji concerts. The family-friendly event features five bands, five food trucks, and a new Brouwerij West beer release. Doors open at 4:30 p.m. with music playing from 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Parking is free and plentiful. Cover charge is $5.00 for those 12 years of age and older,

 Proprietor Brian Mercer taps the keg on Brouwerij West for us.



Show 175, June 11, 2016: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris & Chef Andrew Gruel

Andy Harris and Andrew Gruel at the Pechanga Wine Festival for Angels Radio AM830 KLAAIt’s full immersion with craft beer and outrageous, chef-driven chili as the “SoCal Restaurant Show” is live at the Pechanga Resort & Casino for the 8th Annual Pechanga Microbrew Festival and Chili Cook-off benefiting Habitat For Humanity Inland Valley. Cheers…

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

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

As part of the Pechanga Microbrew Festival nine of the talented Pechanga chefs are creating a signature chili recipe to be enjoyed (and ultimately judged) by the guests. Chef Marlene Moore of Temptations Food Court is the defending chili champ. She is here to stir the slow-simmering pot.

Upland’s Last Name Brewing (formerly known as Dale Bros Brewing) is one of the fine craft breweries participating in the Pechanga Microbrew Festival. Co-owners Andy Dale and Karen McMillen join us to tap the keg.

Chef Damien Stanley is the Executive Sous Chef at the Pechanga Resort & Casino. Chef Stanley held the Pechanga chili throne for two years in 2015 and 2014. He’s not competing this year but will provide an expert’s overview of the nine chef-created chilies in competition for 2016.

One of the smallest craft breweries participating in the Pechanga Microbrew Festival is Mason Jar Brewing in Menifee. It’s the creation of the determined husband and wife team of Robert Carter and Grace Santiago. They transitioned into becoming a production brewery from their hobby as passionate home-brewers.

Ronnel Capacia is the chef at Kelsey’s at Pechanga Resort and Casino. Last year his chili creation was the runner-up. For 2016 he’s back with a new, enhanced recipe. All we know for sure is that the revised creation uses Golden Road Brewing’s Get Up Offa That Brown, a toasty brown ale, in the recipe. We’ll learn a bit more in our chat with Chef Capacia.

Temecula Valley has evolved into a diverse visitors’ destination. In addition to the attractions of the Pechanga Resort & Casino, there is historic Old Town and dozens of praise-worthy wineries. Visit Temecula Valley is the umbrella organization for promoting Temecula Valley as a destination. Marketing & PR Manager Annette Brown and 1st Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors Ken Westmyer (GM of Temecula’s Quality Inn) join us.

Pechanga Resort & Casino has been one of the most successful Indian gaming properties in the West. A new hotel wing is under construction which will add two restaurants, a spa, and a Las Vegas-style resort pool deck with all the upscale amenities including cabanas. Ciara Green, Pechanga’s Public Relations Manager, takes off her hard hat to discuss the ambitious expansion efforts with us.

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