Show 258, January 27, 2018: Chef Derrick Foster, Ember BBQ, Santa Ana

Derrick FosterReal-deal Kansas City-style barbecue has arrived in Orange County with the launch of Ember BBQ in Santa Ana under the watchful direction of Chefs Derrick Foster and Kylie Gordon. Chef Derrick was born and raised in Kansas City.

Ember BBQ is located within Native Son Alehouse. Ember BBQ serves a limited “Snack Menu” on Tuesday and Wednesday, and a full “Smokehouse Menu” Thursday through Sunday for lunch and dinner.

With an on-site smoker, Chef Derrick stays true to Kansas City-style barbecue tradition and history by featuring a variety of meats rubbed with a blend of spices and slow-smoked over hickory wood. His “Smokehouse Menu” features sliced-to-order 1855 Certified Angus Beef Brisket from Colorado, St. Louis Ribs, Smoked Chicken, and Pulled Pork.

He showcases creativity in dishes such as Hogchos, his take on traditional nachos, using chicharron in place of tortilla chips, topped with pulled pork, smoked cheese sauce, pork jerky, pickled onion, sour cream, jalapenos and his housemade BBQ sauce.

Traditional sides are prepared with the utmost attention, including his Rancho Gordo BBQ Beans, which are peppered with brisket burnt ends; Cheesy Corn, which features a Mornay sauce and fresh-off-the-cobb corn; and made-from-scratch traditional banana pudding.

“Kansas City has more than 100 barbecue joints and many have national recognition – I’m trying to bring some of that excitement to Orange County,” explains Chef Derrick, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park who has worked in the kitchens of Corton, The Musket Room, The Rieger and Le Bernardin. “This is definitely food that requires patience and passion, and I’m excited to share my love for it with local diners.”

Kansas City-style barbecue refers to the specific regional style of slowly smoked meats that originated in the early 1900s in Kansas City, Missouri. Chef Derrick’s menu showcases a wide variety of meats, from pork and sausage, to chicken and beef, including Burnt Ends, which are distinctive to Kansas City.

We’re getting fired up with Chef Derrick.

Play

Show 256, January 13, 2018: Jon Sanchez, Proprietor, Native Son Alehouse, Santa Ana

Jon SanchezAll sports fans eagerly anticipate putting their brackets together for the college basketball championships also known as March Madness. Why not a craft beer bracket competition with great prizes and samples of unique craft beers from 14 small producers?

For the 3rd year the ever- creative Jon Sanchez, the proprietor of the popular Native Son Alehouse in Downtown Santa Ana, has done just that. Every Thursday night, with the finals on March 29th, craft brewers are competing head-to-head in pairs. All participants were invited by the staff at Native Son Alehouse.

Already decided are the matchups between Artifex and Cellador Ales, and Mikkeller and Homage Brewing.

At any given time Native Son rotates a carefully hand-picked selection of 27 craft beer styles for their discriminating guests to enjoy. A new addition is the Ember BBQ kitchen serving Kansas City-style barbecue. We’ll be visiting with the dedicated culinary team of Embers BBQ on January 27th.

Jon taps the keg on the spirited competition just for us.

Play

Show 4: October 27, 2012: DivBar in Newport Beach

You don’t expect to find superb regional BBQ favorites with a spectacular bay view in Newport Beach but that’s exactly what’s on the menu at DivBar. It’s Kansas City inspired ‘cue with touches of Texas and The Carolinas. All the BBQ sauces are house-made.

The secret is executive chef Bill Bracken (ex-Island Hotel, Newport Beach) who grew up in the Midwest. For the last 20 years he’s been at the pinnacle of fine-dining but is now having lots more fun adding all of his creative touches to a more accessible cuisine. There is praise-worthy broasted chicken and pizza, too.

Jet particularly raved about the duck fries. Producer Andy praised the beef dip sandwich which is actually shaved thin tri tip. Jet also savored the baby back ribs and the Texas dry-rubbed smoked brisket.

Play