Show 210, February 11, 2017: Show Preview with Andy Harris

9th annual Pechanga Chocolate Decadence and Wine FestivalWe’re live on Saturday from the 9th Annual Pechanga Wine Festival and Chocolate Decadence. It’s a benefit for Habitat for Humanity Inland Valley. A few hundred of the finest vintages from Napa Valley, Sonoma County, Temecula, France, Italy, Spain, Argentina, Chile, Australia, New Zealand and beyond are available for the tasting. Also on the menu are a variety of impressive tastes from the award-winning chefs of Pechanga Resort & Casino.

Now an enticing preview of this Saturday’s totally decadent show with Co-Host Andy Harris. 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 actually a pretty good thing…

Friday, February 10th is Chocolate Decadence at Pechanga. An incredible array of sinful chocolates and pastries are featured from the bakeshops of Pechanga’s Executive Pastry Chef, Jean-Jacques Granet. Chef Jean-Jacques puts down his whisk briefly to join us.

Wilson Creek Winery is a family-owned winery in the heart of Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country known for its quality wines and warm hospitality. The winery features a welcoming tasting room, full-service restaurant with vineyard view dining and expansive patio, creek side picnic area, indoor and outdoor conference and event spaces, romantic wedding venue and exclusive retreat accommodations. We’ll uncork it all with Winemaker Gus Vizgirda.

The Great Oak Steakhouse at Pechanga is one of the most highly regarded fine dining restaurants in the Inland Empire. It’s premium seafood, 100 per cent Prime Angus beef, and an exceptional wine cellar to match. The Great Oaks’ Manager, Alex Pena (who started at Pechanga 13 years ago as a server), is our guest.

Pechanga is well along with an ambitious $285 million expansion of the Hotel and all other guest amenities on the property with the exception of the Casino facilities. A new 2,400 space parking garage has just opened as the first part of the enhancements. Pechanga’s Digital Marketing Manager, Sean Macready fills us in.

Chef Marlene Moore is Pechanga’s two-time defending chili champ. She oversees all the food in the always busy Temptations Food Walk, Bingo Hall and the Poker Room. We’ll chat with Chef Marlene about what’s new on her menus.

We love inspirational entrepreneurial food success stories. For Melba Artea (and her husband Steve) of Crown City Toffee it all started with a family recipe for toffee (with chocolate & nuts) and a pressing need to provide more financial resources for her Family. Crown City Toffee is part of the Pechanga Wine Festival. We’ll get the full story on her popular toffee line that started in her home kitchen.

Temecula Valley has become a popular destination for both day visitors and longer stays, too. Temecula-based food, wine & travel journalists, Susan & Todd Montgomery, provide the local perspective. Sue is on the Board of Directors (also the Treasurer) of the International Food Wine & Travel Writers Association.

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

Play

Show 210, February 11, 2017: Food, Wine & Travel Journalists, Susan & Todd Montgomery

Susan and Todd MontgomeryTemecula Valley has become a popular destination for both day visitors and longer stays, too. In addition to the Pechanga Resort & Casino there are championship golf courses, the magnificent Temecula wine country and the attractions of Old Town Temecula. There is also a blooming arts community locally.

Temecula-based food, wine & travel journalists, Susan & Todd Montgomery, join us to provide the local perspective. Sue is on the Board of Directors (also the Treasurer) of the International Food Wine & Travel Writers Association. Todd is the duo’s official photographer.

Play

February 11: Live from the Pechanga Chocolate Decadence and Wine Festival

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Andy Harris
Segment Two: Jean-Jacques Granet, Executive Pastry Chef, Pechanga Resort & Casino
Segment Three: Gus Vizgirda, Winemaker, Wilson Creek Winery
Segment Four: Alex Pena, Manager, Great Oak Steakhouse, Pechanga Resort & Casino, Temecula
Segment Five: Sean Macready, Social Media / Digital Manager, Pechanga Resort & Casino
Segment Six: Chef Marlene Moore, Temptations Food Walk, Pechanga Resort & Casino
Segment Seven: Melba and Steve Artea, Crown City Toffee
Segment Eight: Food, Wine & Travel Journalists, Susan & Todd Montgomerys

9th annual Pechanga Chocolate Decadence and Wine FestivalWe’re live on Saturday from the 9th Annual Pechanga Wine Festival and Chocolate Decadence. It’s a benefit for Habitat for Humanity Inland Valley. A few hundred of the finest vintages from Napa Valley, Sonoma County, Temecula, France, Italy, Spain, Argentina, Chile, Australia, New Zealand and beyond are available for the tasting. Also on the menu are a variety of impressive tastes from the award-winning chefs of Pechanga Resort & Casino.

Now an enticing preview of this Saturday’s totally decadent show with Co-Host Andy Harris. 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 actually a pretty good thing…

Friday, February 10th is Chocolate Decadence at Pechanga. An incredible array of sinful chocolates and pastries are featured from the bakeshops of Pechanga’s Executive Pastry Chef, Jean-Jacques Granet. Chef Jean-Jacques puts down his whisk briefly to join us.

Wilson Creek Winery is a family-owned winery in the heart of Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country known for its quality wines and warm hospitality. The winery features a welcoming tasting room, full-service restaurant with vineyard view dining and expansive patio, creek side picnic area, indoor and outdoor conference and event spaces, romantic wedding venue and exclusive retreat accommodations. We’ll uncork it all with Winemaker Gus Vizgirda.

The Great Oak Steakhouse at Pechanga is one of the most highly regarded fine dining restaurants in the Inland Empire. It’s premium seafood, 100 per cent Prime Angus beef, and an exceptional wine cellar to match. The Great Oaks’ Manager, Alex Pena (who started at Pechanga 13 years ago as a server), is our guest.

Pechanga is well along with an ambitious $285 million expansion of the Hotel and all other guest amenities on the property with the exception of the Casino facilities. A new 2,400 space parking garage has just opened as the first part of the enhancements. Pechanga’s Digital Marketing Manager, Sean Macready fills us in.

Chef Marlene Moore is Pechanga’s two-time defending chili champ. She oversees all the food in the always busy Temptations Food Walk, Bingo Hall and the Poker Room. We’ll chat with Chef Marlene about what’s new on her menus.

We love inspirational entrepreneurial food success stories. For Melba Artea of Crown City Toffee it all started with a family recipe for toffee (with chocolate & nuts) and a pressing need to provide more financial resources for her Family. Crown City Toffee is part of the Pechanga Wine Festival. We’ll get the full story on her popular toffee line that started in her home kitchen.

Temecula Valley has become a popular destination for both day visitors and longer stays, too. Temecula-based food, wine & travel journalists, Susan & Todd Montgomery, provide the local perspective. Sue is on the Board of Directors (also the Treasurer) of the International Food Wine & Travel Writers Association.

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

Jean Jacques GranetFriday, February 10th is the always incredible Chocolate Decadence at Pechanga. An eye-popping array of truly decadent chocolates and pastries are featured from the bakeshops of Pechanga’s Executive Pastry Chef, Jean-Jacques Granet.

Jean-Jacques Granet, an acclaimed pastry chef who has worked on three continents, is the Executive Pastry Chef at Pechanga Resort & Casino. After spending nearly 15 years as pastry chef at two of the most prestigious luxury resorts in Las Vegas, Granet is now happy to call Southern California home.

Chef Jean-Jacques arrived at Pechanga in March 2015 and has implemented positive changes to the 20-person in-house bakery and pastry shop. He has changed the lineup of desserts offered at Journey’s End golf course restaurant, The Great Oak Steakhouse, Paisano’s Italian restaurant and Umi Sushi & Oyster Bar.

He’s always working on improvements to the desserts and pastries offered at Blends Coffee & Wine Bar. Ongoing is efforts with each of the 11 dining outlets and banquets departments to fulfill and exceed guests’ expectations in the sweets’ department.

Chef Jean-Jacques puts down his whisk briefly to join us.

Gus VizgirdaWilson Creek Winery is a family-owned winery in the heart of Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country known for its quality wines and warm hospitality. The winery features a welcoming tasting room, full-service restaurant with vineyard view dining and expansive patio, creek side picnic area, indoor and outdoor conference and event spaces, romantic wedding venue and exclusive retreat accommodations.

“Delightfully referred to as our “extended family,” the Wilson family is proud to have built a community around the sharing of wine, the celebration of family and the passion to enhance the lives of everyone our brand touches.”

Today, Wilson Creek’s 90 acres of old growth vines grace the Temecula Valley hills and produce over 40,000 cases yearly and include several award-winning varietals.  The two large Tuscan-inspired buildings house a unique tasting room, a grand ballroom and elegant restaurant.

Just as founders Gerry and Rosie Wilson wanted a place where family could come together, the winery grounds feature several spaces designed to bring people together including gazebos, a concert stage, outdoor patio dining and, of course, the peaceful sounds of Wilson Creek.

“The dream and vision of Wilson Creek continues to thrive with three generations of Wilsons involved in day-to-day operations, from wine tasting and tours to weddings and corporate events.”

They are known for their celebratory Almond Sparking Wine (which initially put them on the map) and Gus’ White Cabernet Sauvignon.

We’ll uncork it with Winemaker Gus Vizgirda.

Alex PenaThe Great Oak Steakhouse at Pechanga is one of the most highly regarded fine dining restaurants in the Inland Empire. It’s premium seafood, 100 per cent Prime Angus beef, and an exceptional wine cellar to match. It’s a consistent AAA Four-Diamond Award establishment.

“With an outstanding menu created by award-winning head chef Martin Venegas, a visit to Great Oak promises to be memorable on every level. Martin’s philosophy is no secret: find the best product, use the right ingredients, and execute every creation in a way that brings forward the very best of the flavor profile. Taste the art of deep culinary passion at this signature dining destination.”

The Great Oaks’ accomplished Manager, Alex Pena (who started at Pechanga 13 years ago as a server), is our guest.

Sean MacReadyPechanga is well along with an ambitious $285 million expansion of the Hotel and all other guest amenities on the property with the exception of the Casino facilities. A new 2,400 space parking garage has just opened as the first part of the enhancements.

The project involves adding a new, AAA Four Diamond, 568-room and suite hotel wing; a stand-alone luxury two-story spa and salon with 17 treatment rooms, a fitness center and hydrotherapy pool terrace; a resort-style pool complex with eight pool areas; two new restaurants; and an additional 67,000 square feet of event space.

“We estimate the expansion will result in an economic output of over $550 million, generating roughly 2,944 jobs up front as a result of construction-related activities,” said Dr. Christopher Thornberg, Founding Partner of Beacon Economics. “We estimate the local economy will benefit from an additional 560 jobs per year going forward as a result of expanded operations at Pechanga Resort & Casino.”

Pechanga’s Digital Marketing Manager, Sean MacReady fills us in.

Marlene Moore at the Pechanga Microbrew Festival and Chili CookoffChef Marlene Moore is Pechanga’s two-time chili champ. She oversees the always busy Temptations Food Walk.

Her realm includes Caffee Cocoa – Fine Coffees and Coffee (24 hours), Pronto Italian, Agave Mexican Delights, American Classics (24 hours), Little Wok Asian Specialties, Pechanga Fried Chicken and Banh Mi (made to order) and hot dog carts.

In addition to Temptations Food Walk, Chef Marlene oversees all the food in the long-running Bingo Parlor and bustling Poker Room.

We’ll chat with Chef Marlene about what’s new on her menus.

Melba ArteaWe love inspirational entrepreneurial food success stories. For Melba Artea of Crown City Toffee it all started with a family recipe for toffee (with chocolate & nuts) and a pressing need to provide more financial resources for her Family.

“Our English toffee is made with the freshest ingredients available. It is crispy with a wonderful buttery crunch and topped with a coat of creamy chocolate (milk or dark) with fresh-roasted almonds sprinkled on top.”

“Our Peanut Butter Drizzle is a huge favorite of many of our customers. It’s roasted peanuts topped over melted Peanut Butter Morsels and drizzled with milk chocolate.”

Crown City Toffee is part of the Pechanga Wine Festival. We’ll get the full story from Melba on her popular toffee line that started in her home kitchen. Based on demand they have graduated to producing in a commercial kitchen.

Susan and Todd MontgomeryTemecula Valley has become a popular destination for both day visitors and longer stays, too. In addition to the Pechanga Resort & Casino there are championship golf courses, the magnificent Temecula wine country and the attractions of Old Town Temecula.

Temecula-based food, wine & travel journalists, Susan & Todd Montgomery, join us to provide the local perspective. Sue is on the Board of Directors (also the Treasurer) of the International Food Wine & Travel Writers Association. Todd is the duo’s official photographer.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Andy Harris
Segment Two: Jean-Jacques Granet, Executive Pastry Chef, Pechanga Resort & Casino
Segment Three: Gus Vizgirda, Winemaker, Wilson Creek Winery
Segment Four: Alex Pena, Manager, Great Oak Steakhouse, Pechanga Resort & Casino, Temecula
Segment Five: Sean Macready, Social Media / Digital Manager, Pechanga Resort & Casino
Segment Six: Chef Marlene Moore, Temptations Food Walk, Pechanga Resort & Casino
Segment Seven: Melba and Steve Artea, Crown City Toffee
Segment Eight: Food, Wine & Travel Journalists, Susan & Todd Montgomerys

Show 187, September 3, 2016: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris and Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish Restaurant Group

Happy Labor Day Weekend. Our soundest advice…? Celebrate with something great to eat along the way…

Andrew Gruel and his son WilliamExecutive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Brea, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, LAX, Irvine at UCI and, most recently, The Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum for Rams and USC Football, is back as today’s special Guest Host. In May in Chicago during the National Restaurant Association’s annual conclave he received Nation’s Restaurant News’ Trendsetter MenuMaster Award for Slapfish.

Now a provocatively tempting preview of Saturday’s abundant Holiday Weekend show and not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s actually a pretty good thing…

Local food journalist (with her well-trained ear always to the ground for exclusives) and regular contributor to OC Weekly, Anne Marie Panoringan, was just on a whirlwind dining and libation exploration in the Denver and Boulder Colorado areas. Anne Marie generously shares some of her best discoveries.

Chefs 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.) Featured Chefs Amar Santana, Greg Daniels and OCAPICA’s Executive Director Mary Anne Foo join us with the needed 411.

So you want to be a travel writer…? What are the needed prerequisites and how do you potentially make it happen? Travel Journalist and President of the International Food Wine and Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA), Linda Kissam, joins us to provide the straightforward basics.

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

CANstruction Long Beach returns on September 15th in the Landmark Square Building lobby to benefit Food Finders (food rescue / food bank.) The creative folks at Moffatt & Nichol are competing for the 3rd time. Ari Konyalian of Moffatt & Nichol joins us with all the specifics.

Our Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of The Slapfish Restaurant Group will be at the Los Angeles Times The Taste” this Sunday at Paramount Pictures Studios historic lot in Hollywood for “Flavors of L.A.” hosted by Jonathan Gold. He gives us a preview of his food station (an incredible premium surf & turf burger creation that’s quite a mouthful.) Also on the menu is some tasty and nutritious conversation about the appeal of sardines. Bait fish no more…Respect the humble sardine.

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

Play

Show 187, September 3, 2016: Linda Kissam, President, International Food, Wine and Travel Writers Association

Linda KissamSo you want to be a travel writer…? If you can express yourself well then what are the needed prerequisites and how do you potentially make it happen?

Travel Journalist and President of the International Food Wine and Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA), Linda Kissam, joins us to provide the straightforward basics.

The International Food Wine & Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA) is a global network of professional journalists who cover the hospitality and lifestyle fields, and the people who promote them.

The International Food Wine & Travel Writers Association’s (IFWTWA) Annual Conference is coming up October 30th through November 3rd at The Loews Coronado Bay Resort in Coronado.

Play

September 3: Anne Marie Panoringan, Tastemakers of OC, Linda Kissam, Wicks Brewing, CANstruction Long Beach

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris and Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish Restaurant Group
Segment Two: Food Journalist Anne Marie Panoringan, OC Weekly
Segment Three: Chefs Amar Santana and Greg Daniels – “Tastemakers of Orange County”
Segment Four: Linda Kissam, President, International Food, Wine and Travel Writers Association
Segment Five: Wicks Brewing Company, Riverside Part One
Segment Six: Wicks Brewing Company, Riverside Part Two
Segment Seven: CANstruction Long Beach, Team Moffat & Nichol’s Ari Konyalian
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Chief Seafood Officer, Slapfish Restaurant Group

Happy Labor Day Weekend. Our soundest advice…? Celebrate with something great to eat along the way…

Andrew Gruel and his son WilliamExecutive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Brea, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, LAX, Irvine at UCI and, most recently, The Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum for Rams and USC Football, is back as today’s special Guest Host. In May in Chicago during the National Restaurant Association’s annual conclave he received Nation’s Restaurant News’ Trendsetter MenuMaster Award for Slapfish.

Now a provocatively tempting preview of Saturday’s abundant Holiday Weekend show and not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s actually a pretty good thing…

Local food journalist (with her well-trained ear always to the ground for exclusives) and regular contributor to OC Weekly, Anne Marie Panoringan, was just on a whirlwind dining and libation exploration in the Denver and Boulder, Colorado areas. Anne Marie generously shares some of her discoveries.

Chefs 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.) Featured Chefs Amar Santana, Greg Daniels and Dean Kim join us with the needed 411.

So you want to be a travel writer…? What are the needed prerequisites and how do you potentially make it happen? Travel Journalist and President of the International Food Wine and Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA), Linda Kissam, joins us to provide the straightforward basics.

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

CANstruction Long Beach returns on September 15th in the Landmark Square Building lobby to benefit Food Finders (food rescue / food bank.) The creative folks at Moffatt & Nichol are competing for the 3rd time. Ari Konyalian of Moffatt & Nichol joins us with all the specifics.

Our Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of The Slapfish Restaurant Group will be at the Los Angeles Times “The Taste” this weekend at Paramount Pictures Studios historic lot in Hollywood. He’ll give us a preview of his food station and, with any luck, plenty more.

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

Anne Marie PanoringanLocal food journalist (with her well-trained ear always to the ground for exclusives) and regular contributor to OC Weekly, Anne Marie Panoringan, was just on a whirlwind dining and libation exploration in the Denver and Boulder, Colorado areas. Anne Marie generously shares some of her discoveries.

Her fine-dining experience was at Boulder’s acclaimed Frasca Foods & Wine. This is owned by Master Sommelier Bobby Stuckey (ex-French Laundry) and Chef Lachlan Mackinnon-Patterson. They are also the creators of the buzz-worthy Pizzeria Locale in Boulder.

Also look for Anne Marie’s informative “On the Line” piece (August 29th,) with Chef Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen.

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.)

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,) Greg Daniels (Haven Gastropub) and Dean Kim (OC Baking Co.) join us with the needed 411.

Linda KissamSo you want to be a travel writer…? If you can express yourself well then what are the needed prerequisites and how do you potentially make it happen?

Travel Journalist and President of the International Food Wine and Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA), Linda Kissam, joins us to provide the straightforward basics.

The International Food Wine & Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA) is a global network of professional journalists who cover the hospitality and lifestyle fields, and the people who promote them.

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 taproom also 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.

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.

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.

Canstruction Long BeachCANstruction Long Beach returns on September 15th in the Landmark Square Building lobby to benefit Food Finders (food rescue / food bank.)

What is CANstruction? CANstruction is an international design-build competition. Long Beach is one of over 100 cities that combines the fun of a design-build competition with an ingenious way to help feed hungry people. Local students mentored by these professionals, create phenomena structures built entirely out of canned food. Judging occurs in categories such as Best Use of Labels, Structural Ingenuity, Best Meal, Most Cans, People’s Choice and Jurors’ Favorite, and awards are presented following the exhibition. At the close of the exhibition all of the canned food used in these structures is donated to the Food Finders fresh food rescue / food bank.

“Food Finders is a multi-regional food bank and food rescue program headquartered in Lakewood. We pick up donated food from hundreds of local grocery stores, bakeries, restaurants and produce markets and distribute it directly to missions, shelters and social service agencies to feed the needy and impoverished. Our volunteers and staff­ drivers pick up and deliver on a same-day basis. On average, Food Finders helps provide enough food for 39,000 meals a day, reducing the amount of food insecurity and food waste prevalent throughout Southern California.”

The creative folks at Moffatt & Nichol are competing for the 3rd time. Ari Konyalian of Moffatt & Nichol joins us with all the specifics.

Andrew Gruel at the AM830 KLAA StudiosOur Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel of The Slapfish Restaurant Group, will be at the Los Angeles Times “The Taste” this weekend at Paramount Pictures Studios historic lot in Hollywood. He’ll give us a preview of his food station and probably plenty more.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris and Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish Restaurant Group
Segment Two: Food Journalist Anne Marie Panoringan, OC Weekly
Segment Three: Chefs Amar Santana and Greg Daniels – “Tastemakers of Orange County”
Segment Four: Linda Kissam, President, International Food, Wine and Travel Writers Association
Segment Five: Wicks Brewing Company, Riverside Part One
Segment Six: Wicks Brewing Company, Riverside Part Two
Segment Seven: CANstruction Long Beach, Team Moffat & Nichol’s Ari Konyalian
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Chief Seafood Officer, Slapfish Restaurant Group

Show 178, July 2, 2016: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris and Chef Andrew Gruel

Andrew Gruel at the AM830 KLAA StudiosHappy 4th of July Weekend to all of our loyal listeners. Wishing you the very best in culinary fireworks over the long weekend. Eat well and be safe…

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. Last month in Chicago he received Nation’s Restaurant News’ Trendsetter MenuMaster Award for Slapfish.

Now an enticing preview of Saturday’s lush, patriotic and abundant 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…

Upscale senior living facilities offering incredible amenities and delicious, healthy, chef-prepared food of restaurant quality represent a huge growth industry nationally. One of the industry leaders is Morrison Community Living. We’ll meet their Senior Corporate Chef, John Rifkin.

The Garagiste Festival: Urban Exposure returns to The Wiltern theater on July 9th.  Over 60+ artisan ‘garagiste’ winemakers from across California, including Santa Barbara, Santa Ynez and SLO counties; Napa and Sonoma counties, and Paso Robles will pour over 200 wines. Over 30% of the wineries are participating in the Los Angeles festival for the first time. Co-founder Doug Minnick pulls the cork on the festivities for us.

“The Art of Baja Wine & Beer Dinner” takes place at the newly renovated The Grill at the Lodge at Torrey Pines on Friday evening, July 15th. Baja’s Chef Drew Deckman has put together a four-course family style dinner highlighting traditional dishes and ingredients from this unique region, which will be prepared on the outdoor rotisserie of The Grill. The dinner will feature wine connoisseur and Michelin-starred Chef Drew Deckman (Deckman’s en el Mogor) as well as Hugo D’Acosta, the premier winemaker of Valle De Guadalupe. Executive Chef Jeff Jackson of The Lodge at Torrey Pines joins us.

Food, wine and travel writer Cori Solomon (a member of the prestigious International Food Wine and Travel Writers Association and Founder of L.A. Wine Writers) recently returned from a 10-night cruise of Italy and the Greek Isles aboard the Celebrity Reflection, the pride of Celebrity’s fleet. Her accommodation was a spacious, Deluxe Ocean View Veranda Stateroom. This is a Solstice class ship, the crown of Celebrity’s fleet. Modern cruising offers a memorable vacation experience for all ages with considerable value. Cori is with us to share her smooth-sailing, cruise highlights.

Many passionate Italian chefs will tell you cheese (even the incredible Parmigiano-Reggiano) should NEVER be added to a seafood dish (particularly a seafood pasta creation.) Yet you’re now seeing lobster macaroni and cheese prepared by fine-dining chefs and raved about by guests. Our own Chef Andrew Gruel has successfully used cheese with lobster and crab at Slapfish. Confused….? We’ll ask Chef Andrew to explain.

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

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Show 178, July 2, 2016: Food, Wine & Travel Journalist, Cori Solomon. 10-Night Cruise on Celebrity’s Reflection Part One

Cori SolomonFood, wine and travel writer Cori Solomon (a member of the prestigious International Food Wine and Travel Writers Association & Founder of L.A. Wine Writers) recently returned from a 10-day cruise of Italy and the Greek Isles aboard the Celebrity Reflection, the pride of Celebrity’s fleet. Her accommodation was a spacious, Deluxe Ocean View Veranda Stateroom.

This is a Solstice-class ship. Modern cruising offers a memorable vacation experience for all ages and interests with considerable value. Cori is with us to share her smooth-sailing, cruise highlights.

“Celebrity Reflection® is our newest marvel. She boasts an expanded deck, 72 additional staterooms overall, more seating in the main and specialty restaurants, more sun lounges on the pool deck, and more seats in the theatre.”

“Celebrate the flavorful joys of outdoor grilling in the new Lawn Club Grill. Enjoy more than 20 delicious options in the Main Restaurant. Unwind in your own cabana-style haven, The Alcoves, on the Lawn Club. And check out all the new spa innovations in the enhanced Canyon Ranch SpaClub®.”

“Your vacation time is precious. Time aboard Celebrity Reflection will make the most of it.”

Save

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Show 178, July 2, 2016: Food, Wine & Travel Journalist, Cori Solomon. 10-Night Cruise on Celebrity’s Reflection Part Two

Cori SolomonFood, wine and travel writer Cori Solomon (a member of the prestigious International Food Wine and Travel Writers Association & Founder of L.A. Wine Writers) recently returned from a 10-day cruise of Italy and the Greek Isles aboard the Celebrity Reflection, the pride of Celebrity’s fleet. She continues…

The Reflection can accommodate 3,046 guests served by a crew of 1,255.

There is an ambitious wine program aboard the Celebrity Reflection. The ship’s Cellar Master is actually the senior sommelier for Celebrity’s entire fleet. He trains all the other Cellar Masters.

Each Cellar Master adjusts his or her cellar selections to the demographics of the passengers and the countries the ship visits on that particular cruise. If you enjoy wine with meals the best value is one of the beverage packages. There is a tasting seminar offered on the options before you make a commitment. The Cellar Master also hosts a number of fun, interactive wine education events on each cruise.

From Cruise Critic:

With the impressive overall quality of food on board Celebrity Reflection there is little need to spend extra on specialty dining unless you feel like a treat. Even Oceanview, the cheerful buffet venue on Level 14, takes things to a new level with tasty International dishes that belie the restaurant’s casual surroundings.

Celebrity didn’t reinvent the wheel when it comes to dining on Reflection, sticking instead with familiar options. In the main dining room passengers can choose from traditional dining (6:15 p.m. for the early seating and 8:45 p.m. for the late) or the more flexible Celebrity Select Dining, which allows them to eat in the main dining room any time between 6 and 10 p.m. Bookings for Select Dining can be made online up to four days before the ship sails or once onboard. Or, like us, you can simply walk-in whenever it suits you. We never had to wait longer than five minutes for a table for two although we did notice a queue on one formal night.

The main dining area, Opus, occupies space on Reflection’s third and fourth decks. It’s an elegant venue, decorated in deep browns and silvers, with bright white tablecloths and crystal as far as the eye can see. The vast space — which accommodates 40 more seats than its counterpart on Celebrity Silhouette — is stunningly designed, though tables are a bit too close together making private conversation difficult (although this can be a good way to meet fellow passengers if you are so inclined).

Menus in Opus offer appetizers, soups and salads, entrees and desserts, and they’re flexible enough to accommodate specific dietary needs. You’ll choose from a variety of options, including favorites like shrimp cocktail, escargot, prime rib, rack of lamb and crème brulee. Food is generally good, with appropriate portion sizes and some surprises on the menu, like the beef Carpaccio or frog legs. Do ask your waiter what they recommend as suggestions are usually spot-on.

Vegetarian and healthier options are identified on the menu, but if you have specific dietary needs (vegan or gluten-free), discuss them with the maitre d’ before your first meal, and ask specific questions about the menu items you select.

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Play

July 2: Morrison Community Living, Garagiste Festival, Jeff Jackson, Cori Solomon

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris and Chef Andrew Gruel
Segment Two: John Rifkin, CEC, Senior Corporate Executive Chef, Morrison Community Living
Segment Three: Doug Minnick, Co-Founder, The Garagiste Festival: Urban Exposure
Segment Four: Jeff Jackson, Executive Chef, Lodge at Torrey Pines. Art of Baja Dinner
Segment Five: Food, Wine & Travel Journalist, Cori Solomon. 10-Night Cruise on Celebrity’s Reflection Part One
Segment Six: Food, Wine & Travel Journalist, Cori Solomon. 10-Night Cruise on Celebrity’s Reflection Part Two
Segment Seven: Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group, Huntington Beach

Andrew Gruel at the AM830 KLAA StudiosHappy 4th of July Weekend to all of our loyal listeners. Wishing you the very best in culinary fireworks over the long weekend.

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. Last month in Chicago he received Nation’s Restaurant News’ Trendsetter MenuMaster Award for Slapfish.

Now an enticing preview of Saturday’s lush and abundant 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…

Upscale senior living facilities offering incredible amenities and delicious, healthy, chef-prepared food of restaurant quality represent a huge growth industry nationally. One of the industry leaders is Morrison Community Living. We’ll meet their Senior Corporate Chef, John Rifkin.

The Garagiste Festival: Urban Exposure returns to The Wiltern theater on July 9th.  Over 60+ artisan ‘garagiste’ winemakers from across California, including Santa Barbara, Santa Ynez and SLO counties; Napa and Sonoma counties, and Paso Robles will pour over 200 wines. Over 30% of the wineries are participating in the Los Angeles festival for the first time.  Co-founder Doug Minnick pulls the cork on the festivities for us.

“The Art of Baja Wine & Beer Dinner” takers place at the newly renovated The Grill at the Lodge at Torrey Pines on Friday evening, July 15th. Executive Chef Jeff Jackson has put together a four-course family style dinner highlighting traditional dishes and ingredients from this unique region, which will be prepared on the outdoor rotisserie of The Grill. The dinner will feature wine connoisseur and Michelin-starred Chef Drew Deckman (Deckman’s en el Mogor) as well as Hugo D’Acosta, the premier winemaker of Valle De Guadalupe. Chefs Drew and Jeff join us.

Food, wine and travel writer Cori Solomon (a member of the prestigious International Food Wine and Travel Writers Association and Founder of L.A. Wine Writers) recently returned from a 10-day cruise of Italy and the Greek Isles aboard the Celebrity Reflection, the pride of Celebrity’s fleet. Her accommodation was a spacious, Deluxe Ocean View Veranda Stateroom. This is a Solstice class ship. Modern cruising offers a memorable vacation experience for all ages with considerable value. Cori is with us to share her smooth-sailing, cruise highlights.

Huntington Beach restaurateur Alicia Whitney is seemingly taking over the City one block at a time. Her newest full-service restaurant is SeaSalt Woodfire Grill featuring Santa Maria-style barbecue. She is also now on the sand at Bolsa Chica State Beach with two open beach food stands and a third set to open this weekend. We’ll detour Alica for a quick respite and get all the tasty details.

Many passionate Italian chefs will tell you cheese (even the incredible Parmigiano-Reggiano) should NEVER be added to a seafood dish (particularly a seafood pasta creation.) Yet you’re now seeing lobster macaroni and cheese prepared by fine-dining chefs and raved about by guests. Our own Chef Andrew Gruel has successfully used cheese with lobster at Slapfish. Confused….? We’ll ask Chef Andrew to explain.

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

John RifkinUpscale senior living facilities offering incredible amenities and delicious, healthy, chef-prepared food of restaurant quality represent a huge growth industry nationally. One of the industry leaders is Morrison Community Living. We’ll meet their Senior Corporate Chef, John Rifkin.

Chef Rifkin joined Morrison Community Living in 2004 as corporate chef. In this role Rifkin was able to support the many Morrison Senior Living communities throughout the country and help to show the value of both Morrison and Compass Groups’ robust sustainable seafood program nationally.

In 2010 Chef Rifkin was promoted to Senior Corporate Chef. Under his leadership he has been able to drive Morrison Community Livings’ sustainable results even further, and along with his team of 10 Corporate Chefs, 24 Regional Chefs, and the over 400 plus chefs across the country to create very delicious sustainable seafood recipes.

Chef Rifkin knows that the generations entering Morrison Community Living communities have a very high expectation that they understand where their seafood and food comes from, but also that it is harvested responsibly as well. Chef Rifkin collaborates with many food service organizations to support him to bring the very best ingredients to the seniors that Morrison Senior Living prepares for. These guests have traveled the world, run Fortune 500 companies, and are master home chefs in their own right, cooking many meals for their family and loved ones throughout the years.

Garagiste FestivalThe Garagiste Festival: Urban Exposure returns to The Wiltern theater on July 9th.  Over 60+ artisan ‘garagiste’ winemakers from across California, including Santa Barbara, Santa Ynez and SLO counties; Napa and Sonoma counties, and Paso Robles will pour over 200 wines. Over 30% of the wineries are participating in the Los Angeles festival for the first time.  Co-founder Doug Minnick uncorks the festivities for us.

Urban Exposure also presents the LA premiere of one of its signature comparison tasting seminars, “Tasting the Winemaker’s Spice Rack,”  on the stage of The Wiltern. Rendarrio Vineyards owner and winemaker Ryan Render and Michael Larner, winemaker and owner of the renowned Larner Vineyard, will use side-by-side comparisons to help wine consumers understand, through their taste buds, how different oak treatments – from type to region to toast – can affect the finished product and change the profile of a single wine.

Renowned for their ‘crazy thrill of discovery,’ one-on-one interactions with winemakers, and fun ‘no-snobs-allowed’ atmosphere, Garagiste Festivals offer wine lovers their only opportunity to taste so many small-production, hard-to-find wines, from so many regions, all in one place – over 60% of Urban Exposure winemakers are without a tasting room.

Drew Deckman“The Art of Baja Wine & Beer Dinner” takers place at the newly renovated The Grill at the Lodge at Torrey Pines on Friday evening, July 15th. Executive Chef Jeff Jackson has put together a four-course family style dinner highlighting traditional dishes and ingredients from this unique region, which will be prepared on the outdoor rotisserie of The Grill (which just completed a spectacular $2.5 million renovation.)

The dinner will feature wine connoisseur and Michelin-starred Chef Drew Deckman ( Deckman’s en el Mogor) as well as Hugo D’Acosta, the premier winemaker of Valle De Guadalupe who will showcase rare wines normally unavailable in California.

For those who prefer hops to grapes, Eugenio Wendtlandt of Wendlandt Brewery, voted best Mexican Brewery 2015, will also be in attendance in addition to other craft beer selections from the Agua Mala region.

Baja’s Chef Drew Deckman is also coming to San Diego. He has a restaurant project on Bankers Hill set to debut in early 2017.

Chefs Drew Deckman and Jeff Jackson join us.

Cori SolomonFood, wine and travel writer Cori Solomon (a member of the prestigious International Food Wine and Travel Writers Association & Founder of L.A. Wine Writers) recently returned from a 10-day cruise of Italy and the Greek Isles aboard the Celebrity Reflection, the pride of Celebrity’s fleet. Her accommodation was a spacious, Deluxe Ocean View Veranda Stateroom.

This is a Solstice-class ship. Modern cruising offers a memorable vacation experience for all ages and interests with considerable value. Cori is with us to share her smooth-sailing, cruise highlights.

“Celebrity Reflection® is our newest marvel. She boasts an expanded deck, 72 additional staterooms overall, more seating in the main and specialty restaurants, more sun lounges on the pool deck, and more seats in the theatre.”

“Celebrate the flavorful joys of outdoor grilling in the new Lawn Club Grill. Enjoy more than 20 delicious options in the Main Restaurant. Unwind in your own cabana-style haven, The Alcoves, on the Lawn Club. And check out all the new spa innovations in the enhanced Canyon Ranch SpaClub®.”

“Your vacation time is precious. Time aboard Celebrity Reflection will make the most of it.”

The Reflection can accommodate 3,046 guests served by a crew of 1,255.

From Cruise Critic:

With the impressive overall quality of food on board Celebrity Reflection there is little need to spend extra on specialty dining unless you feel like a treat. Even Oceanview, the cheerful buffet venue on Level 14, takes things to a new level with tasty International dishes that belie the restaurant’s casual surroundings.

Celebrity didn’t reinvent the wheel when it comes to dining on Reflection, sticking instead with familiar options. In the main dining room passengers can choose from traditional dining (6:15 p.m. for the early seating and 8:45 p.m. for the late) or the more flexible Celebrity Select Dining, which allows them to eat in the main dining room any time between 6 and 10 p.m. Bookings for Select Dining can be made online up to four days before the ship sails or once onboard. Or, like us, you can simply walk-in whenever it suits you. We never had to wait longer than five minutes for a table for two although we did notice a queue on one formal night.

The main dining area, Opus, occupies space on Reflection’s third and fourth decks. It’s an elegant venue, decorated in deep browns and silvers, with bright white tablecloths and crystal as far as the eye can see. The vast space — which accommodates 40 more seats than its counterpart on Celebrity Silhouette — is stunningly designed, though tables are a bit too close together making private conversation difficult (although this can be a good way to meet fellow passengers if you are so inclined).

Menus in Opus offer appetizers, soups and salads, entrees and desserts, and they’re flexible enough to accommodate specific dietary needs. You’ll choose from a variety of options, including favorites like shrimp cocktail, escargot, prime rib, rack of lamb and crème brulee. Food is generally good, with appropriate portion sizes and some surprises on the menu, like the beef Carpaccio or frog legs. Do ask your waiter what they recommend as suggestions are usually spot-on.

Vegetarian and healthier options are identified on the menu, but if you have specific dietary needs (vegan or gluten-free), discuss them with the maitre d’ before your first meal, and ask specific questions about the menu items you select.

Andrew Gruel and his son WilliamMany passionate Italian chefs will tell you cheese (even the incredible Parmigiano-Reggiano) should NEVER be added to a seafood dish. Yet you’re now seeing lobster macaroni and cheese prepared by fine-dining chefs and raved about by guests.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel has successfully used cheese with lobster at Slapfish. It’s popular with the guests. Confused….? We’ll ask Chef Andrew to explain.

Save