Show 249, November 25, 2017: Audra Wilford, Co-Founder, MaxLove Project

Audra WilfordMaxLove Project is an innovative grassroots nonprofit organization with a mission to increase the quality of life and reduce health risks for all children surviving cancer, both in treatment and beyond. MLP empowers families fighting childhood cancers and related life-threatening conditions with quality of life care, fierce foods, whole-body wellness resources, education and research.

MaxLove Project, an Orange County nonprofit dedicated to improving the lives of child cancer patients, survivors and their families, recently raised $240,000 at their annual fundraiser at Tanaka Farms in Irvine to launch an initiative in partnership with Northern California-based The Charlie Cart Project with the goal of placing a nutritional teaching kitchen in every children’s hospital in the country.

The Charlie Cart is a mobile teaching kitchen equipped with a sink, oven, pantry storage, kitchen supplies and more. Each cart costs $9,500, as opposed to the enormous expense of constructing a kitchen at each children’s hospital nationwide.

“MaxLove Project has grown out of the idea that food can be medicine. When families face serious health conditions like pediatric cancer, they need to be empowered to take their children’s quality of life in their own hands,” MaxLove Project Co-Founder Audra Wilford, whose son Max is a brain cancer survivor, said. “By learning culinary skills and the nutrition science principles we call ‘Fierce Foods,’ parents and kids together can thrive against the odds.”

MaxLove Project is developing a curriculum where representatives and local chefs will educate doctors, nurses and the public on the healing potential of food as medicine. Locally, MaxLove Project has teamed up with Chefs Azmin Ghahreman of Sapphire Laguna, Zov Karamardian of Zov’s Bistro, Greg Daniels of Haven Gastropub, Michael Puglisi of Electric City Butcher and Cathy McKnight of Eilo to spearhead the movement.

Co-Founder of the MaxLove Project, Audra Wilford, is our guest.

Play

Show 226, June 3, 2017: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris

Now an enticing preview of this Saturday’s ample, and calorie-packed, 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…

The madness that is LA Weekly’s 5th Annual Tacolandia presented by Tabasco returns on Saturday, June 17th at El Pueblo de Los Angeles with over 120 taco vendors. The best-of-the-best tacos represented are personally selected by Street Gourmet’s Bill Esparza, known as the Tacorazza. We’ll talk taco with Senor Bill.

The 9th Annual Pechanga Microbrew Festival and Chili Cook-Off taps the craft beer keg in Temecula on Saturday afternoon, June 10th. “The SoCal Restaurant Show” will be live from the Pechanga Grand Ballroom that morning from 10:00 a.m. to 12 Noon. One of the new participating craft breweries at the Microbrew Festival is Breakwater Brewing Co. in Oceanside. Founder Shannon Sager (CEO & GM) is our guest.

You’ve been hearing us talk about OC Foodie Fest’s Pub & Grub – A Culinary Crawl happening in Downtown Santa Ana on Saturday, June 10th. It’s time to get the specifics. Joining us is James Foxall, the curator of Pub & Grub and Chef Jake McPeck of the crowd-pleasing Mess Hall Canteen Food Truck.

The national challenge of The James Beard Foundation’s annual Blended Burger Project is on! Answering the call in the OC is Chef Greg Daniels of Haven Gastropub in Orange with his creation of the Haven Breakfast Burger. We’ll hear all about blended burger deliciousness with Chef Greg and how you can vote in support of Chef Greg’s creation.

Longevity for a restaurant in the highly competitive Los Angeles restaurant arena isn’t an easy thing. Wolfgang Puck’s 2nd fine-dining restaurant in the Los Angeles area after Spago was Chinois on Main in Santa Monica. It launched in 1983 and is still a landmark dining destination in Santa Monica that consistently delivers. GM & Partner Bella Lantsman has, extraordinarily, been there since the beginning. We’ll meet her.

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

Play

Show 226, June 3, 2017: Executive Chef Greg Daniels, Haven Gastropub, The James Beard Foundation’s Blended Burger Project

Greg Daniels of Haven GastropubThe national challenge of The James Beard Foundation’s annual Blended Burger Project is on! Answering the call in the OC is Chef Greg Daniels of Haven Gastropub in Orange with his creation of the Haven Breakfast Burger.

“The James Beard Foundations’ Blended Burger Project invites past and new Blended Burger Project™ participants to join a movement that strives to make burgers better by blending ground meat with chopped mushrooms, creating an incredibly delicious patty that’s healthier for your guests and more sustainable for the planet.”

The Haven Breakfast Burger contains more than 25% mushroom chorizo, combined with Haven’s custom grind, Tillamook sharp cheddar, maple coffee braised bacon, fried egg, arugula, and Haven ketchup, on an OC Baking Company double egg-washed brioche bun.

“My culinary team and I had a lot of fun creating a blended burger for the James Beard Foundation. Blending meat with mushrooms reduces calories, fat, and sodium while adding important nutrients like vitamin D, potassium, and B vitamins,” explained Chef Daniels, whose original Haven Burger has received national acclaim. “A blended burger also brings more sustainable, plant-based items to menus allowing Americans to enjoy the taste and flavor of the burgers they love, knowing it’s a healthier and more sustainable preparation.”

Haven Gastropub is asking guests to post photos with the hashtags #havenbreakfastburger and #blendedburgerproject. All guests who vote for their favorite blended burger online will also be entered to win an all-expense paid trip for two to the 2018 Blended Burger event at the James Beard House. More information and a list of all participating restaurants can be found online here.

We’ll hear all about blended burger deliciousness with Chef Greg.

Play

June 3: Tacolandia, Breakwater Brewing, OC Foodie Fest Pub & Grub, Greg Daniels, Chinois on Main

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: 5th Annual Tacolandia Preview with “Tacorazza” Bill Esparza (The Street Gourmet)
Segment Three: Shannon Sager, CEO & General Manager, Breakwater Brewing Co., Oceanside
Segment Four: James Foxall, Pub & Grub’s Curator & Chef Jake McPeck, The Mess Hall Canteen Food Truck
Segment Five: Executive Chef Greg Daniels, Haven Gastropub, The James Beard Foundation’s Blended Burger Project
Segment Six: Bella Lantsman, General Manager & Partner, Chinois on Main, Santa Monica Part One
Segment Seven: Bella Lantsman, General Manager & Partner, Chinois on Main, Santa Monica Part Two

Now an enticing preview of this Saturday’s ample, and calorie-packed, 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…

The madness that is LA Weekly’s 5th Annual Tacolandia presented by Tabasco returns on Saturday, June 17th at El Pueblo de Los Angeles with over 120 taco vendors. The best-of-the-best tacos represented are personally selected by Street Gourmet’s Bill Esparza, known as the Tacorazza. We’ll talk taco with Senor Bill.

The 9th Annual Pechanga Microbrew Festival and Chili Cook-Off taps the craft beer keg in Temecula on Saturday afternoon, June 10th. One of the new participating craft breweries at the Microbrew Festival is Breakwater Brewing Co. in Oceanside. Founder Shannon Sager (CEO & GM) is our guest.

You’ve been hearing us talk about OC Foodie Fest’s Pub & Grub – A Culinary Crawl happening in Downtown Santa Ana on Saturday, June 10th. It’s time to get the specifics. Joining us is James Foxall, the curator of Pub & Grub and Chef Jake McPeck of the crowd-pleasing Mess Hall Canteen Food Truck.

The national challenge of The James Beard Foundation’s annual Blended Burger Project is on! Answering the call in the OC is Chef Greg Daniels of Haven Gastropub in Orange with his creation of the Haven Breakfast Burger. We’ll hear all about blended burger deliciousness with Chef Greg and how you can vote in support of Chef Greg’s creation!

Executive Chef Nick Liberato of Venice Restaurant Group and The Venice Whaler is no stranger to the “SoCal Restaurant Show.” Just in time for Summer The Venice Whaler has a new Dinner Menu, Brunch Menu and Cocktail Program. Chef Nick will fill us in with what’s new at the beach.

Longevity for a restaurant in the highly competitive Los Angeles restaurant arena isn’t an easy thing. Wolfgang Puck’s 2nd fine-dining restaurant in the Los Angeles area after Spago was Chinois on Main in Santa Monica. It launched in 1983 and is still a landmark dining destination in Santa Monica that consistently delivers. GM & Partner Bella Lantsman has, extraordinarily, been there since almost the beginning. We’ll meet her.

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

Bill EsparzaThe madness that is LA Weekly’s 5th Annual Tacolandia presented by Tabasco returns on Saturday, June 17th at El Pueblo de Los Angeles with over 120 taco vendors from California, Mexico and beyond. The best-of-the-best tacos represented are personally selected by Street Gourmet’s Bill Esparza, known as the Tacorazza.

Visitors get to enjoy unlimited tastes of these signature tacos. Some are from prized family recipes that have been around for generations. The taco fiesta is paired with some thirst-quenching, ice-cold beer and margaritas.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel will be there with Slapfish. Thinking a lobster taco.

It’s Los Angeles’ largest ticketed taco festival and it continues to grow each year.

VIP is, unfortunately, already sold-out!

We’ll talk taco with Senor Bill.

Shannon SagerIf you’ve been wanting to try out the burgeoning Southern California craft brew scene, this June in Temecula is your chance. Craft beer makers throughout Southern California and beyond will all come together in Temecula Wine Country for a festival in support of Habitat for Humanity. The 9thAnnual Pechanga Microbrew Festival and Chili Cook-off is Saturday, June 10, from 1 – 5 p.m. inside the Pechanga Resort & Casino Grand Ballroom.

One of the new participating craft breweries at the Microbrew Festival is Breakwater Brewing Co. in Oceanside. The restaurant started brewing on-site in early 2009. Their 6.8 per cent Rye Dawn (a Brown Ale brewed with rye, oats, wheat and barley) won a Gold Medal at the 2016 World Beer Cup.

Founder Shannon Sager (CEO & GM) is our guest.

Guests must be 21 or older to attend. For tickets or for more information, visit Pechanga’s Website or call (877) 711-2946.

Jake McPeckYou’ve been hearing us talk about the upcoming OC Foodie Fest’s Pub & Grub – A Culinary Crawl happening in Downtown Santa Ana on Saturday, June 10th. Attendees are invited to “crawl” through Downtown Santa Ana deliciously eating and drinking every step of the way.

It’s Orange County’s most mouth-watering edibles including smothered tots, addictive tacos, and piping hot churros. Multiple bars with craft beer, wine, and outrageous cocktails. Our own Chef Andrew Gruel will be represented there with Two Birds’ drool-worthy, Hot Fried Chicken Sandwiches.

The June 10th event will take place in two parts. The Artisan Bazaar, buy-as-you go area for a modest $10, will run from 12 Noon to 11:00 p.m. Tickets for the 2-sessions of the All-Access Area, all you can eat and drink section are $60. Tickets available now right here.

Joining us with all the details are James Foxall the curator of Pub & Grub and Chef Jake McPeck of the crowd-pleasing Mess Hall Canteen Food Truck. Mess Hall is famous at Festivals for their signature Drunken Sailor Tots. Just look for the long, line line…

Greg Daniels of Haven GastropubThe national challenge of The James Beard Foundation’s annual Blended Burger Project is on! Answering the call in the OC is Chef Greg Daniels of Haven Gastropub in Orange with his creation of the Haven Breakfast Burger.

“The James Beard Foundations’ Blended Burger Project invites past and new Blended Burger Project™ participants to join a movement that strives to make burgers better by blending ground meat with chopped mushrooms, creating an incredibly delicious patty that’s healthier for your guests and more sustainable for the planet.”

The Haven Breakfast Burger contains more than 25% mushroom chorizo, combined with Haven’s custom grind, Tillamook sharp cheddar, maple coffee braised bacon, fried egg, arugula, and Haven ketchup, on an OC Baking Company double egg-washed brioche bun.

“My culinary team and I had a lot of fun creating a blended burger for the James Beard Foundation. Blending meat with mushrooms reduces calories, fat, and sodium while adding important nutrients like vitamin D, potassium, and B vitamins,” explained Chef Daniels, whose original Haven Burger has received national acclaim. “A blended burger also brings more sustainable, plant-based items to menus allowing Americans to enjoy the taste and flavor of the burgers they love, knowing it’s a healthier and more sustainable preparation.”

Haven Gastropub is asking guests to post photos with the hashtags #havenbreakfastburger and #blendedburgerproject. All guests who vote for their favorite blended burger online will also be entered to win an all-expense paid trip for two to the 2018 Blended Burger event at the James Beard House. More information and a list of all participating restaurants can be found online here.

We’ll hear all about blended burger deliciousness with Chef Greg.

Belle LantsmanLongevity for a restaurant in the highly competitive Los Angeles restaurant arena isn’t an easy thing. Celebrity Chef Wolfgang Pucks 2nd fine-dining restaurant in the Los Angeles area after Spago was Chinois on Main in Santa Monica. It launched in 1983 and is still a landmark dining destination in Santa Monica that consistently delivers with memorable food and polished service. Many of the professional servers have, unusually, been there for years.

Chinois on Main boldly combines Chinese tradition and fresh California ingredients with contemporary French techniques. The restaurant pioneered Asian fusion cuisine in the United States. Today, Chinois remains a culinary icon with its timeless interior design by Barbara Lazaroff, an open kitchen, full-service bar, and extensive (and expertly crafted) wine list.

The Executive Chef is Rene Mata. He started at Chinois on Main as a line cook in 1987.

GM & Partner Bella Lantsman has, extraordinarily, been there since almost the beginning. We’ll meet her.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: 5th Annual Tacolandia Preview with “Tacorazza” Bill Esparza (The Street Gourmet)
Segment Three: Shannon Sager, CEO & General Manager, Breakwater Brewing Co., Oceanside
Segment Four: James Foxall, Pub & Grub’s Curator & Chef Jake McPeck, The Mess Hall Canteen Food Truck
Segment Five: Executive Chef Greg Daniels, Haven Gastropub, The James Beard Foundation’s Blended Burger Project
Segment Six: Bella Lantsman, General Manager & Partner, Chinois on Main, Santa Monica Part One
Segment Seven: Bella Lantsman, General Manager & Partner, Chinois on Main, Santa Monica Part Two

Show 218, April 8, 2017: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris

Now an enticing preview of this Saturday’s ample 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…

“The Big Cheese” Grilled Cheese Festival & Competition (4th Annual) returns to Provisions Market in Orange on the evening of Wednesday, April 12th. It’s National Grilled Cheese Day of course! Event Co-Founder Chef Greg Daniels (Haven Gastropub & Provisions Market) and Chef Max Schlutz of Sessions West Coast Deli are our appropriately melty & cheesy guests.

Ever wonder how Orange Coast magazine’s annual April Restaurant issue comes together? Orange Coast’s long-time Dining Critic Gretchen Kurz shares an exclusive behind-the-scenes peek into this year’s 30-plus favorite restaurants and the bizarrely inexplicable “Orange Coast Curse.”  Do restaurant critics have “Pet Peeves”? You bet, and we’ll discover some of Gretchen’s most bothersome…

Innovating the outstanding gameday experience with new levels of flavor and fun, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and Legends Hospitality have further expanded the menus and fan apparel and collectible retail destinations at Angel Stadium of Anaheim for the 2017 MLB Season. It officially premiered on April 7 when the Angels played the Seattle Mariners for the season home opener, with an even more outstandingly diverse and exciting selection of food, beverage and retail destination options and items will satisfy fan appetites for big delicious flavor and premium Angels branded gear with custom and personalized detail. Halos’ Executive Chef Robert Biebrich of Legends Hospitality joins us.

The Santa Maria area is known for classic Santa Maria BBQ, pinquito beans, and great California Pinot Noir, Syrah and Chardonnay. All of these tasty elements come together on the menu at Far Western Tavern in Orcutt established in 1958. Co-Proprietress, Susan Righetti (representing the founding Minetti Family) joins us. It’s quite a meaty story…

Chef Andrew Gruel is on the road today in the wilds of New Mexico. He’ll rejoin us next Saturday just in time for our Easter Show.

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

Play

Show 218, April 8, 2017: “The Big Cheese” Grilled Cheese Festival & Competition

The Big Cheese Grilled Cheese Competition“The Big Cheese” Grilled Cheese Festival & Competition (4th Annual) returns to Provisions Market in Orange on the evening of Wednesday, April 12th.

In celebration of National Grilled Cheese Month in April, Provisions Market and OC Baking Company will once again join forces to host The Big Cheese, Orange County’s grilled cheese festival and competition. Event Co-Founder Chef Greg Daniels and his fellow OC Chefs will compete for the title of “The Big Cheese” in this 4th annual event to be held on National Grilled Cheese Day on Wednesday, April 12th from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Provisions Market (143 N. Glassell Street, Orange, CA 92866).

OC Baking Company Master Baker Dean Kim will supply locally produced freshly baked bread to the competing chefs, while the farmer-owned dairy cooperative Tillamook County Creamery Association will offer a selection of its award-winning butter and cheeses for use at the festival, including new Farmstyle Cut Shredded Cheese crafted for ideal melt.

Competing chefs will present their own spin on the classic grilled cheese sandwich that will be evaluated by a panel of judges who will determine The Big Cheese 2017. In addition, the festival attendees will sample and then vote on a “People’s Choice” winner from the collection of high-profile chef participants including Amar Santana of Vaca and Broadway by Amar Santana.

“This is our 4th year, and I love how this event keeps bringing our local chefs together in a lighthearted competition to melt cheese and make people smile,” commented Chef Greg Daniels, who oversees the kitchens at Provisions Market and Haven Gastropub.

Event Co-Founder Chef Greg Daniels (Haven Gastropub & Provisions Market) and Chef Max Schlutz of Sessions West Coast Deli are our melty & cheesy guests.

Play

April 8: The Big Cheese, Gretchen Kurz, Angels Baseball Bites, Far Western Tavern

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: “The Big Cheese” Grilled Cheese Festival & Competition
Segment Three: Gretchen Kurz, Dining Writer, Critic, Orange Coast Magazine Part One
Segment Four: Gretchen Kurz, Dining Writer, Critic, Orange Coast Magazine Part Two
Segment Five: Executive Chef Robert Biebrich, Angel Stadium, Legends Hospitality Part One
Segment Six: Executive Chef Robert Biebrich, Angel Stadium, Legends Hospitality Part Two
Segment Seven: Susan Righetti, Far Western Tavern & Susie Q’s Brand, Santa Maria & Orcutt, CA Part One
Segment Eight: Susan Righetti, Far Western Tavern & Susie Q’s Brand, Santa Maria & Orcutt, CA Part Two

Now an enticing preview of this Saturday’s ample 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…

“The Big Cheese” Grilled Cheese Festival & Competition (4th Annual) returns to Provisions Market in Orange on the evening of Wednesday, April 12th. It’s National Grilled Cheese Day of course! Event Co-Founder Chef Greg Daniels (Haven Gastropub & Provisions Market) and Chef Max Schlutz of Sessions West Coast Deli are our melty & cheesy guests.

Ever wonder how Orange Coast magazine’s annual April Restaurant issue comes together? Orange Coast’s long-time Dining Critic Gretchen Kurz shares an exclusive behind-the-scenes peek into this year’s 30-plus favorite restaurants and the bizarrely inexplicable “Orange Coast Curse.”  Do restaurant critics have “Pet Peeves” ? You bet, and we’ll discover some of Gretchen’s most bothersome…

Innovating the outstanding gameday experience with new levels of flavor and fun, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and Legends Hospitality have further expanded the menus and fan apparel and collectible retail destinations at Angel Stadium of Anaheim for the 2017 MLB Season. Officially premiering on April 7 when the Angels play the Seattle Mariners season home opener, an even more outstandingly diverse and exciting selection of food, beverage and retail destination options and items will satisfy fan appetites for big delicious flavor and premium Angels branded gear with custom and personalized detail. Halos’ Executive Chef Robert Biebrich joins us.

The Santa Maria area is known for classic Santa Maria BBQ, pinquito beans, and great California Pinot Noir, Syrah and Chardonnay. All of these tasty elements come together on the menu at Far Western Tavern in Orcutt established in 1958. Co-Proprietress, Susan Righetti (representing the founding Minetti Family) joins us. It’s quite a meaty story…

Chef Andrew Gruel is on the road today in the wilds of New Mexico. He’ll rejoin us next Saturday.

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

The Big Cheese Grilled Cheese Competition“The Big Cheese” Grilled Cheese Festival & Competition (4th Annual) returns to Provisions Market in Orange on the evening of Wednesday, April 12th.

In celebration of National Grilled Cheese Month in April, Provisions Market and OC Baking Company will once again join forces to host The Big Cheese, Orange County’s grilled cheese festival and competition. Event Co-Founder Chef Greg Daniels and his fellow OC Chefs will compete for the title of “The Big Cheese” in this 4th annual event to be held on National Grilled Cheese Day on Wednesday, April 12th from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Provisions Market (143 N. Glassell Street, Orange, CA 92866).

OC Baking Company Master Baker Dean Kim will supply locally produced freshly baked bread to the competing chefs, while the farmer-owned dairy cooperative Tillamook County Creamery Association will offer a selection of its award-winning butter and cheeses for use at the festival, including new Farmstyle Cut Shredded Cheese crafted for ideal melt. Competing chefs will present their own spin on the classic grilled cheese sandwich that will be evaluated by a panel of judges who will determine The Big Cheese 2017. In addition, the festival attendees will sample and then vote on a “People’s Choice” winner from the collection of high-profile chef participants including Amar Santana of Vaca and Broadway by Amar Santana.

“This is our 4th year, and I love how this event keeps bringing our local chefs together in a lighthearted competition to melt cheese and make people smile,” commented Chef Greg Daniels, who oversees the kitchens at Provisions Market and Haven Gastropub.

Event Co-Founder Chef Greg Daniels (Haven Gastropub & Provisions Market) and Chef Max Schlutz of Sessions West Coast Deli are our melty & cheesy guests.

Orange Coast Best Restaurants 2017Ever wonder how Orange Coast magazine’s annual April Restaurant issue comes together? Orange Coast’s long-time Dining Critic Gretchen Kurz shares an exclusive behind-the-scenes peek into this year’s 30-plus favorite restaurants and the bizarrely inexplicable “Orange Coast Curse.”  Do restaurant critics have “Pet Peeves?” You bet, and we’ll discover some of Gretchen’s most bothersome…

“Where should we eat? Some foodies never ask this, as they always have a hot place in mind. Other friends are open to anything, any time. When I have to decide where to go, it’s usually about the atmosphere as much as the food. A rainy day lunch with girlfriends calls for a different venue than a special-occasion date night. And what better way to please out‑of‑town guests than Sunday brunch on a waterfront patio?”

“Whatever your appetite, we’re sure to have something that suits you in our Best Restaurants feature (Page 116) as we’ve tripled the size of our list this year and broken it into categories. So you won’t just find the best new restaurants, but also the classics, most-improved spots, and delightful one-of-a-kind places, among other groupings. This issue is a fascinating chance to get into the head of our dining critic, Gretchen Kurz. She comes in for a planning meeting, we talk trends, what she likes (and doesn’t), and we leave those meetings excited and hungry—no more food meetings before lunch! One pattern we’re noticing is fewer lunch options. About half of the 30-plus restaurants we feature in this issue don’t offer weekday lunch and have added weekend brunch instead. Other places have decided to focus only on daytime dining. The scene in Orange County is shifting, and sometimes it moves fast—we had to swap or remove at least three dining listings in our last issue just before we went to print. Keeping up is a challenge we relish, most of the time. Be sure to check out Gretchen’s essay about the downsides of her job (Page 125). It will make you grateful to be able to choose where you eat after she does the preliminary work.”

Best Restaurants is the April 2017 issue of Orange Coast – The Magazine of Orange County. “For the first time, we (Orange Coast) give you an expanded list of O.C.’s standout restaurants—everything from new to classic, cozy favorites to attention-getters.”

Robert BiebrichInnovating the outstanding gameday experience with new levels of flavor and fun, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and Legends Hospitality have further expanded the menus and fan apparel and collectible retail destinations at Angel Stadium of Anaheim for the 2017 MLB Season.

Officially premiering on April 7 when the Angels play the Seattle Mariners season home opener, an even more outstandingly diverse and exciting selection of food, beverage and retail destination options and items will satisfy fan appetites for big delicious flavor and premium Angels branded gear with custom and personalized detail.

From mouthwatering, on-trend recipes crafted from premium fresh ingredients, to sensational pairings with craft beers and cocktails, to fan apparel tailored to each fan’s preference, the 2017 season at Angel Stadium of Anaheim is sure to exceed fan expectations with the innovation and energy that are a Southern California tradition and standard.

Halos’ Executive Chef Robert Biebrich joins us with all the crave-worthy details. Here’s his his overview of what’s new in food and beverage at Angel Stadium for 2017.

Super Food Salad is new from Melissa’s. It’s baby and Tuscan kale blend with quinoa, roasted sweet potatoes, dried cherries, golden carrots, edamame, toasted walnuts and pumpkin seeds with a zesty lime vinaigrette. Location: Melissa’s at 1st & 3rd Base Food Court on Field Level, plus The Corner Market, Section 221 Terrace Level, as well as In Seat Service.

Crafty Dawg Signature “Pastrami Dawg” – all-beef hotdog topped with shaved pastrami, sauerkraut and sweet and spicy mustard. Location: Section 127 Field Level and 420 View Level

Oke Poke – a fresh and satisfying poke bowl destination with all the classic Hawaiian dish elements, and variety. Fans will be able to custom build a bowl or burrito started with tuna or salmon with choice of brown or white rice in the following options: Crunchy Garlic – ‘Oke’ garlic sauce, ginger, sesame oil, honey; Fire Cracker – spicy mayo, ‘Oke’ garlic sauce, sesame seeds, Hawaiian sea salt; Okeechi -Korean Napa cabbage, minced garlic, kimchee sauce; Bailey – ‘Oke’ sweet chili, cucumber, carrots, cilantro, scallions, sesame seeds.   Also featuring authentic Hawaiian shaved ice. Location: 3rd base food court on Field Level, In Seat Service and The Corner Market, Section 221 on Terrace Level.

LA Rotisserie Opening later in the season, this new destination eatery delivers a new incredible dining experience of fresh and delectable fine roasted meats and poultry to our concessions concourse. Located directly behind home plate on field level this new location will feature a delicious variety of composed salads and slow roasted chicken roasted with savory spices, served as a wholesome platter or in hand-crafted sandwiches. Location: Behind Home Plate on Field Level.

Susan RighettiThe Santa Maria area is known for classic Santa Maria BBQ, pinquito beans, and great California Pinot Noir, Syrah and Chardonnay. All of these tasty elements are on the menu at Far Western TavernContemporary California Ranch Cuisine in Orcutt established in 1958.

“Welcome to the Far Western Tavern – Contemporary California Ranch Cuisine inspired by local traditions. For more than five decades, spanning three generations of Minetti family ownership, the Far Western Tavern has been driven by a timeless appreciation for regional cuisine and an inherited commitment to hospitality.”

“Our restaurant is recognized as a landmark of Santa Maria Style Barbecue, a renowned regional fare rooted in native ingredients and methods that were first popularized by 19th century rancheros. Our menu blends this local barbecue style with other dishes that reflect our family’s heritage in the Santa Maria Valley’s Swiss-Italian ranching community. Our menus are graced with fresh flavors from the nearby farms, ranches and vineyards.”

“The Far Western Tavern was established in 1958 by Clarence and Rosalie Minetti along with Rosalie’s cousin Richard Maretti and his wife Jean. Originally located in the historic Palace Hotel building in the town of Guadalupe, the Far Western Tavern quickly became a hometown favorite, attracting locals and visitors alike with its legendary fare and welcoming ambiance. Today the restaurant has its home in a beautiful building in Old Town Orcutt.”

“Since those early days, the Far Western Tavern has outlasted countless culinary trends, remaining true to its original style while keeping pace with contemporary tastes. As Clarence was fond of saying, “To last in this business, you have to like people and you have to serve great food. It’s that simple.” Today, Clarence and Rosalie’s children and grandchildren remain committed to advancing the Far Western Tavern tradition.”

Co-Proprietress, Susan Righetti (representing the founding Minetti Family) joins us. She is also the proprietress of Susie Q’s Brand, purveyors of gift packages of signature local food products. It’s all quite a meaty story…

“Welcome to the Far Western Tavern—contemporary California ranch cuisine inspired by local traditions.”

“Our restaurant is recognized as a landmark of Santa Maria Style Barbecue, a renowned regional fare rooted in native ingredients and methods that were first popularized by 19th century rancheros.”

“Our menu blends this local barbecue style with other dishes that reflect our family’s heritage in the Santa Maria Valley’s Swiss-Italian ranching community, all prepared with fresh flavors from nearby farms, ranches and vineyards.”

Buon appetito!

-The Minetti Family

“Sharing the unique flavors of the Santa Maria Valley with the world”

“As a young girl, Santa Maria style cuisine was always a central part of gatherings at our family ranch. I can still recall the aroma of my mom’s beans simmering on the stove, while ranch-raised steaks, seasoned with the perfect blend of garlic, salt and pepper, sizzled over coals of red oak.”

“This style of cooking, pioneered by Spanish vaqueros of the Santa Maria valley over a hundred years ago, is unique to the central coast of California. The cuts of meat, the flavorful seasonings and the use of local ingredients, like plump, pink pinquito beans, have been passed down for generations; including to my parents, whose love of Santa Maria barbeque led them to open the Far Western Tavern in 1958.”

“While I was working at my parent’s restaurant I enjoyed meeting diners from all over the world who traveled here to experience Santa Maria cuisine. It inspired me to find a way to share the wonderful flavors of my family’s culinary heritage beyond the restaurant. So in 1981, I created the first Susie Q Brand products and created relationships with local grocers who kindly put them on their store shelves.”

“I’m proud that Susie Q Brand is the original maker of authentic, artfully-crafted Santa Maria style food, and even as we’ve grown, we’re still a family run business. Today my children, and even grandchildren, help us share more of our family recipes, including delicious Santa Maria style salsas, locally grown pinquito beans, and red oak chips for grilling – everything you need to create an authentic Santa Maria style barbeque in your own home!” – Susan Righetti

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: “The Big Cheese” Grilled Cheese Festival & Competition
Segment Three: Gretchen Kurz, Dining Writer, Critic, Orange Coast Magazine Part One
Segment Four: Gretchen Kurz, Dining Writer, Critic, Orange Coast Magazine Part Two
Segment Five: Executive Chef Robert Biebrich, Angel Stadium, Legends Hospitality Part One
Segment Six: Executive Chef Robert Biebrich, Angel Stadium, Legends Hospitality Part Two
Segment Seven: Susan Righetti, Far Western Tavern & Susie Q’s Brand, Santa Maria & Orcutt, CA Part One
Segment Eight: Susan Righetti, Far Western Tavern & Susie Q’s Brand, Santa Maria & Orcutt, CA Part Two

Show 187, September 3, 2016: Chefs Amar Santana and Greg Daniels – “Tastemakers of Orange County”

Amar SantanaChefs supporting a worthy cause yet again…The 1st Annual “Tastemakers of Orange County” at SOCO on September 8th benefits The Orange County Asian and Pacific Islander Community Alliance (OCAPICA.) The lineup of culinary talents is impressive.

This culinary event celebrates the Asian and Pacific Islander community, culture, and heritage and gives guests the opportunity to taste and indulge in Asian and Pacific Island-inspired cuisines and beverages from distinguished chefs throughout Orange County.

Greg Daniels of Haven GastropubThe Orange County Asian and Pacific Islander Community Alliance (OCAPICA) was established in 1997 with the vision to build healthier, happier, and stronger communities and strives to transform Orange County through innovative programs and strategies that can be a model for other individuals, groups, and organizations to follow in efforts to change.

Featured benefit Chefs Amar Santana (Vaca & Broadway by Amar Santana) and Greg Daniels (Haven Gastropub) join us with the needed 411. Also Mary Anne Foo, the Executive Director of OCAPICA.

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Show 168, April 23, 2016: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris & Chef Andrew Gruel

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

Congrats to Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel on his Nation’s Restaurant News 2016 Menu Masters Award as a Trendsetter. Presented annually by Nation’s Restaurant News, the prestigious awards honor outstanding foodservice research and development. Chef Andrew will receive his MenuMaster Award in a by-invitation-only reception at The Drake Hotel in Chicago on May 21st during the National Restaurant Association’s convention.

Now an enticing sneak peak of Saturday’s appetizing 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…

One of the newest additions to Santa Ana’s 4th Street Market is Pig Pen Delicacy. It’s a fresh take on American comfort food using an array of sophisticated and modern interpretations of bacon and pork favorites. Co-owner and Director of Operations Jason Trinh joins us with all the pork-a-licious details.

It’s time for America’s favorite pastime…Ballpark food. It’s our always anticipated annual report on what’s new on the menu at Angel Stadium with Executive Chef Robert Biebrich. It’s the 50th season at Angel Stadium so expect to be impressed.

Since The Pie Hole launched in The Arts District of Downtown L.A. in 2011 it’s been a word-of-mouth and social media sensation. The Pie Hole offers fresh baked sweet pie by the slice, individual savory pies, and their own premium coffee. Co-owner Sean Brennan joins us with his fresh-from-the-oven recipe for sweet (and savory) success.

The Four Brix Winery in Ventura grew out of three couples’ hobby of making premium wine at home for their appreciative friends. The Winery represents a throwback to the days of blended wines made in California. Winemaker and Partner Gary Stewart uncorks it for us.

One of the more unusual finds at the recent Natural Products Expo West in Anaheim was Tin Star Foods. They produce Cultured Ghee and Cultured Brown Butter in small batchers. Tin Star Foods Founder, Hima Pandya, is our guest.

The annual Dine LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week is taking place April 23 – May 1, 2016. Each participating restaurant from twelve unique neighborhoods in the city offers a three course menu priced at $20, $30, $40 or $50, either per guest with wine pairing options at fine dining locations OR dinner for two priced at $20, $30, $40 or $50, where diners share an appetizer, each enjoy their own entree, then share a dessert at more casual establishments. One of the participating restaurants in DINE LBC is Domenico’s Italian Restaurant, Long Beach’s oldest restaurant. Proprietor Mike Rhodes joins us.

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

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Show 167, April 9, 2016: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris & Chef Andrew Gruel

Program Note for Saurday, April 16thOur Halos are playing an unusual 11:10 a.m. start on the road with the Minnesota Twins. We’ll be back with another big show on April 23rd at 10:00 a.m. See you then.

Andrew Gruel and his son WilliamExecutive 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.

Now an enticing sneak peak of Saturday’s mouthwatering 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…

The annual Dine LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week is taking place April 23 – May 1, 2016. Each participating restaurant from twelve unique neighborhoods in the city offers a three course menu priced at $20, $30, $40 or $50, either per guest with wine pairing options at fine dining locations OR dinner for two priced at $20, $30, $40 or $50, where diners share an appetizer, each enjoy their own entree, then share a dessert at more casual establishments. Producer Terri Henry and Executive Chef David MacLennan of James Republic (an encoring participating restaurant) are our guests.

The Pacific Food & Beverage Museum is inaugurating The Thoughtful Feast,” a new series of curated dinners that highlight the culinary heritage of Southern California, the Pacific Coast, American West, and beyond. The first dinner on April 11th will focus on a region of the American South that in the early 1700s developed a cosmopolitan cuisine. Host Chef Brian Dunsmoor of Hatchet Hall in Culver City and The Pacific Food & Beverage’s Museum’s Philip Dobard are with us to set the ample table.

Noted gourmand Darrell Corti of Corti Brothers gourmet grocery and spirit purveyors in Sacramento is the Chairman of the globally respected L.A. International Extra Virgin Olive Oil Competition. We’ll chat about the Best of Show award recipients and lots more. TheDailyMeal.com has dubbed him one of the coolest people in food and drink in America.

Chef Michael Puglisi (ex-Bouchon Beverly Hills) is the Electric City Butcher at the 4th Street Market in Santa Ana. He was greatly influenced by a cousin in Sicily who has a popular, neighborhood butcher shop there. Chef Michael is a custom, whole animal, artisan butcher. We’ll meet him.

Executive Chef Amar Santana (a C-CAP graduate) is the Proprietor of Broadway by Amar Santana in Laguna Beach and the new Vaca in Costa Mesa. Both restaurants have highly innovative beverage programs to compliment the stellar cuisine. Chef Amar was also one of two finalists on Bravo’s Top Chef Season 13 which just concluded with a cliff-hanger of a two-part finale in Las Vegas. Chef Amar is our guest.

The 3rd Annual “The Big Cheese” Grilled Cheese Festival & Competition returns to Provisions Market in Orange on Tuesday, April 19th. Provisions Market and OC Baking Co. will celebrate National Grilled Cheese Month with fellow OC Chefs and a ProAm Challenger in an intense (but light-hearted) grilled cheese competition. Event co-founder, Chef Greg Daniels of Provisions, joins us with the gooey overview courtesy of Tillamook County Creamery Association.

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

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