Show 257, January 20, 2018: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group

Andy Harris and Andrew Gruel at the Fifth Anniversary of the SoCal Restaurant ShowOur always informed Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel, shares (and explains) in his continuing series hospitality business trends he sees for 2018.

Here’s a real hot button issue…One of the major credit card companies, in a test, is incentivizing restaurants to use credit cards exclusively for payment. No cash accepted sat all…

Is a cashless restaurant really good hospitality? Is there any difference in acceptance of this policy ranging from a quick service spot to a fine dining establishment?

Chef Andrew has had recent experience with this in the fast-casual sphere and shares his first-hand observations. He listened to his guests and then responded accordingly.

Play

Show 256, January 13, 2018: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group

Andrew Gruel at the AM830 KLAA StudiosOur always dynamic Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel, is back in-studio from his recent adventures in Park City, Utah where he has just debuted the third Slapfish in Utah. Chef Andrew will share (and explain) some important hospitality business trends he sees for 2018.

Is delivery a growing trend for better restaurants? Is ticketing (and paying in advance) for fine dining a viable business model? This is another chapter of his conversation continued from the previous weeks.

Next week is a discussion of the “cashless” restaurant. Is this good for promoting welcoming hospitality?

Play

Show 255, January 6, 2018: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group

Andrew and William GruelOur always dynamic Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel, is back in-studio from his adventures in Park City, Utah where he has just debuted the third Slapfish in Utah. Chef Andrew will share (and explain) some important hospitality business trends he sees for 2018.

Where is fine-dining headed? Where is the labor pool of tomorrow coming from? Is the restaurant business over-seated?

This is Part 3 of his spirited conversation continued from the previous two weeks.

Play

Show 254, December 30, 2017: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group

Andy Harris and Andrew Gruel at the Fifth Anniversary of the SoCal Restaurant ShowOur dynamic Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel, connects from Park City, Utah where he has just debuted the third Slapfish in Utah. For Friday’s opening festivities the first 100 guests in line were treated to a full menu-sized Lobster Roll. Happy Holidays, indeed…

Chef Andrew will share (and explain) some important hospitality business trends he sees for 2018. Where is fine-dining now headed? What impact will the California increase in minimum wage have of the hospitality industry?

This is Part 2 of his intriguing conversation continued from last week.

Play

Show 253, December 23, 2017: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel

Andrew and William GruelOur Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel, joins us from Park City, Utah where he has just debuted the third Slapfish in Utah. Chef Andrew will share (and explain) some important hospitality business trends he sees for 2018.

It’s a challenging time for the restaurant business at all levels from fast casual to fine-dining. The next tax laws will impact hospitality, too.

Play

Show 252, December 16, 2017: Cary Hardwick, Co-Founder, Spaghettini Seal Beach

Cary Hardwick of SpaghettiniNext year Spaghettini in Seal Beach celebrates its 30th anniversary of success. It’s a big establishment. Unusually it’s part fine-dining and also a popular entertainment venue. It’s famous for its long-running, 5-hour Smooth Jazz Sunday Brunch.

Since 1988, this visionary partnership has created a unique blend of taste and entertainment in Southern California. Leading Southern California restaurateurs Laurie Sisneros and Cary Hardwick have realized a meeting place for L..A and Orange counties in their award-winning restaurant – Spaghettini Fine Dining and Entertainment.

Located just off the 405 Freeway at Seal Beach Blvd., Spaghettini features exceptional Northern Italian cuisine and top name entertainment.

Serving up the tasty history along with a Spaghettini Sparkling Wine toast is Co-Founder & Managing Partner Cary Hardwick.

Play

Show 238, August 26, 2017: Restaurateur & Chef Alan Greeley, The Golden Truffle

Alan GreeleyChef Alan Greeley of The Golden Truffle in Costa Mesa is an Orange County original. The destination restaurant is in a bit of an odd location for an establishment with its fine-dining reputation. He’s cooked for 4 US Presidents. Alan’s distinctive wine cellar was simply stocked with selections that he personally liked. After 37 years Chef Alan has closed The Golden Truffle. He’s off to Florida for the next chapter.

We’ll share some memories with Chef Alan and chat about the state of the restaurant business. Along the way he’s graciously mentored many young chefs who now have successful Orange County restaurants of their own.

What does it take to cook a high-ticket, breakfast fundraiser in Corona del Mar for a sitting US President? Chef Alan will share that story with us.

For menu highlights think Alan’s Caribbean Topless Tamale with Chile Verde.

Play

Show 207, January 21, 2017: Restaurateur Sam King, CEO, King’s Seafood Company Part One

Sam KingThe original Water Grill, one of the area’s best fine-dining seafood restaurants, opened in Downtown Los Angeles in 1989. There are now busy locations in Downtown Los Angeles, Santa Monica, San Diego, South Coast Plaza – Costa Mesa, and, just launched this month, Dallas. The new South Coast Plaza location is nearly 18,000 square feet.

Focusing on first-of-season seafood, Water Grill prides itself in offering the broadest selection of fin fish, oysters, crustaceans and shellfish to its guests.

“It’s been a dream of ours to bring Water Grill to Orange County,” says Sam King, CEO of the Orange County based King’s Seafood Company. “We hold this project near and dear to our hearts, and we’re so excited to open Water Grill right here in our own backyard. We look forward to sharing our passion for outstanding quality seafood and attentive service with our longtime friends and neighbors.”

The largest Water Grill to date, the nearly 18,000 square-foot restaurant and adjacent patio were designed in partnership with Hatch Design Group. Taking inspiration from a refurbished ship, the restaurant features reclaimed locally-sourced woods and authentic nautical components paired with rustic and iron finishes. A central, copper-top bar anchors the space, while an additional bar is located in the outdoor patio area, offering a multitude of seating options.

The 500-seat restaurant boasts several private dining options and multiple event spaces, ideal for intimate celebrations, business gatherings, large parties and charity events.

Play

Show 115, March 21, 2015: General Manager Jim Colombo and Mad Bar Scientist Amber, Five Crowns

Jim ColomboLook who is turning 50 this year! 2015 marks the 50-year legacy of dining at Five Crowns in Corona del Mar.

To celebrate, the Lawry’s family and newly promoted Executive Chef Steve Kling have unveiled a brand new menu and beverage program unlike any other menu this fabled establishment has offered in its 50-year history. It’s not your Grandparents’ Five Crowns anymore (although they are still most welcome.)

The refreshed menu presents nearly three times the culinary selections of past menus including a broad array of starters, main dishes, new family-style options and seafood selections. It breaks guests out of the expected course structure of fine dining. The fare pays homage to some of the Five Crowns heritage items, but with a modern twist. The new menu and beverage program are only the beginning of exciting Five Crowns at 50 announcements expected throughout the year.

There is also some quiet conversation about a “rediscovered” hidden speakeasy.

General Manager Jim Colombo (who is also a chef by training) and resident “Mad Bar Scientist Amber” join us with a tempting overview of the creative enhancements.

Play

Show 106, January 17, 2015: Dine Newport Beach Restaurant Week

Dine Newport Beach Restaurant WeekDine Newport Beach Restaurant Week returns with a renewed and refreshed format this winter, spanning two weeks of scrumptious dining possibilities from Monday, January 19th to Sunday, February 1st, 2015. Diners have the opportunity to enjoy special price fixed menus at lunch or dinner priced to represent a great value. Some restaurants are offering special Newport Beach Restaurant Week cocktails to pair with their special menus.

New price points on menus available to offer something for everyone and every occasion. Lunch – $10, $15, $20, and $25. Dinner – $20, $30, $40, and $50.

“Newport Beach Restaurant Week will showcase a variety of unique dining experiences and cuisines ranging from American favorites to authentic ethnic fare and formal fine dining to hip and sandy-feet -casual,” notes Polly Peak, Director of Dine Newport Beach.

Polly Peak, Director of Dine Newport Beach (the marketing arm of the Newport Beach Restaurant Association) is with us to preview all the tasty morsels.

Play