Show 136, August 29, 2015: Executive Chef & Partner Michael Fiorelli, Love & Salt

Michael FiorelliThe Los Angeles Times’The Taste” food festival returns to Paramount Pictures Studios in Hollywood on Labor Day Weekend running from September 4th through 6th. Executive Chef Michael Fiorelli of Love & Salt in Manhattan Beach is co-hosting the Saturday night program, “Dinner with a Twist.”

Chef Fiorelli is on the L.A. Times Culinary Stage that night from 9 to 9:30 p.m. “Cooking and mixology demonstration presented by Michael Fiorelli and Vincenzo Marianella (Copa d’Oro / The Independence / Love & Salt.)” Love & Salt will also have a tasting session that night.

“Discover plates and pours from L.A.’s dining scene. – What’s more L.A. than a swanky cocktail party on a Hollywood backlot ? That’s exactly what this Saturday evening event is. You’ll enjoy drinks that have brought Southern California’s cutting–edge cocktail culture into a golden age and unique dishes from the city’s hottest chefs.”

Chef Michael joins us to preview the festivities.

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Show 107, January 24, 2015: Louie’s of Mar Vista

John AtkinsonLouie’s of Mar Vista is a true gem of a discovery in the Mar Vista area of Los Angeles located in a former butcher shop. (The renovation was an exhausting 5 years.) It’s American Bar Food A.S.A.P. (as Southern as possible.) Chef John Atkinson is the owner along with his wife Laura Develle Atkinson (who is from New Orleans.)

Laura designed the interior of Louie’s of Mar Vista. A long bar dominates the North end of the space. Visualize teak, Carrara marble, and brass fixtures.

Their attention to detail and quality is evidenced by their local honey which is used as a food ingredient as well in their premium libations (Louie’s Honey & Ginger Moonshine.) While doing the renovation a large hive of honey bees was discovered in the rafters. They were carefully relocated to proper hive boxes on the roof. The bees now live there peacefully and pay their rent in pure honey.

“Louie’s of Mar Vista is an enthusiastic celebration of Southern California food and lifestyle, living in the present with an eye on the past.” The Mar Vista Sunday Farmers’ Market takes place just outside their door. For Louie’s it’s a great source for fresh, local ingredients. They serve brunch on Saturday and Sunday from 11:00 a.m.

They also own the very busy North End Caffe in Manhattan Beach which was featured in a frequently repeated episode of Guy Fieri’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” on Food Network.

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Show 104, January 3, 2015: Sylvie Gabriele, Love & Salt, Manhattan Beach

Sylvie GabrieleLove & Salt is the latest addition to the dynamic Manhattan Brach dining scene. It’s located on the site of the long-running Café Pierre (and the ownership group includes the partners from the former Café Pierre.)

It’s now a high-energy Italian inspired restaurant under the culinary direction of partner Michael Fiorelli (ex- mar’sel at the Terranea Resort.) He blends accessibility and innovation with a menu that celebrates the soul of Italian cuisine reflected through a distinctly Southern California personality.

Guy Gabriele (the larger-than-life executive chef and co-owner of the former Café Pierre) created the eclectic wine list.

There are two chef counters in Love & Salt. One looks into the pizza prep station and the other view is right into the main kitchen with the highly visible wood-burning oven as the highlight. There is also an long community table running down the length of the space.

Co-owner Sylvie Gabriele (Farm Stand) is our guest. She is a 2nd generation South Bay restaurateur and Guy Gabriele’s daughter.

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Show 104, January 3, 2015: Sylvie Gabriele, Love & Salt, Manhattan Beach Continues…

Sylvie GabrieleLove & Salt is the latest addition to the dynamic Manhattan Brach dining scene. It’s located on the site of the long-running Café Pierre (and the ownership group includes the partners from the former Café Pierre who are the father and daughter combo of Chef Guy Gabriele and Sylvie Gabriele.)

The guest seating at Love & Salt has possibilities for all tastes and preferences. If old-style comfort is you choice then there are booths along the West wall. For foodies there are two different chef counters where the guest becomes part of the action in the kitchen. For a more lively experience the long bar offers the full menu and there is a lengthy communal table in the middle of the space running from the entrance area back to the kitchen.

Menu highlights at Love & Salt encompass unusual items including a Roasted Glazed Pig Head served with maple, vinegar, pale ale, condiments and toast.

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Show 50, November 30, 2013: David LeFevre, Executive Chef & Partner of MB Post and Fishing with Dynamite

Charlie TrotterRemembering Charlie Trotter.

Earlier in the month the food world lost Chef Charlie Trotter who was the first superstar celebrity chef in Chicago and influenced and mentored a network of prominent young chefs who now have their own high profile restaurants in Chicago and other key cities. Charlie Trotter’s (the restaurant) on W. Armitage was known to foodies around the world for his innovative tasting menus and brilliant wine cellar.

Our own David LeFevre, the executive chef & partner of both MB Post and Fishing with Dynamite in Manhattan Beach worked for Charlie over a period of ten years in a couple of stints. David joins us to share memories of the real Charlie Trotter. Fortunately his legacy will live on.

Three luscious tasting menus were available at Charlie Trotter’s. They changed each night. The choices were Vegetables, the Grand Tasting Menu and The Super Grand Tasting Menu showcasing 14 to 20 courses. It wasn’t just a meal…It was an experience.

Charlie’s goal (and it was sincere) was to exceed the diners’ expectations in every possible way!

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November 30, Suzanne Goin, Griffin Hammond, Robert Wemischner, Pascal Olhats, Gavin Kaysen, David LeFevre

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin of Lucques, A.O.C. and Tavern Part One
Segment Three: Chef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin of Lucques, A.O.C. and Tavern Part Two
Segment Four: Griffin Hammond, of “Sriracha – a documentary by Griffin Hammond.”
Segment Five: Chef Instructor Robert Wemischner of L.A. Trade-Tech College
Segment Six: Pascal Olhats, owner/chef of Pascal Epicerie, Brasserie Pascal, and Café Jardin
Segment Seven: Gavin Kaysen, Executive Chef and Director of Culinary Operations for Café Boulud
Segment Eight: David LeFevre, Executive Chef & Partner of MB Post and Fishing with Dynamite

We hope you’re all enjoying the extended Thanksgiving Weekend. Remember to give us a listen along the way on Saturday morning…

As we complete our 14th month on the air with the “SoCal Restaurant Show” with Jet Tila we want to again thank our loyal listeners and sponsors for their enthusiasm and support. We wouldn’t be here without you and we never forget that.

Thanks to positive listener feedback Jet has a new segment on Friday morning. Be sure to tune in Friday mornings at 7:50 a.m. for “What’s Cooking with Travis and Chef Jet Tila” on the “Travis Rodgers Show.” Jet talks with Travis about food and cooking from the dude’s perspective. It’s on the lighter side and you won’t hear this AM 830 KLAA exclusive feature elsewhere.

Chef Jet and Producer Andy preview the show.

Suzanne GoinChef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin is true culinary royalty in Los Angeles. She has just published her second cookbook, the A.O.C. Cookbook. It was a two year process.

Suzanne is the recipient of the James Beard Award for Outstanding Chef: California (2006) and is a multiple past nominee. She worked for Alice Waters at Chez Panisse earlier in her career. Her final position at Campanile (now closed) in Hollywood (before going out on her own) was as executive chef.

Suzanne partnered with sommelier, Caroline Styne, to open Lucques in West Hollywood in 1998. That was followed by A.O.C. in 2002. Next was Tavern and The Larder in Brentwood. The President has dined at Tavern.

A new Larder is soon to open in January at The Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport.

A.O.C. CookbookSuzanne talks about cooking with seasonal vegetables and how that passion of hers found its way into the A.O.C. Cookbook.

She feels it’s very important to balance flavors which you only learn by tasting.

All the recipes in the cookbook were tested in a home kitchen by an enthusiastic home cook.

Suzanne’s long-time business partner, Caroline Styne, has wonderfully informative wine notes that go with each recipe in the book.

A.O.C. (the restaurant) has recently moved a mile West to the old Orso location on W. Third Street across from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Suzanne shares how the move came about.

Griffin HammondGriffin Hammond is a respected documentary filmmaker. He’s just completed his fascinating film on Sriracha. This documentary has taken him to Southern California on multiple occasions and even to Thailand where Sriracha originated. In Thailand the people are amazed that Sriracha is a popular condiment in the United States.

Griffin financed this unusual documentary via an incredibly successful Kickstarter campaign that was actually oversubscribed.

Robert WemischnerChef Instructor Robert Wemischner is a mainstay in the Baking Department at L.A. Trade Tech in Downtown Los Angeles. He’s also an accomplished pastry chef and author. The Dessert Architect is his most recent title.

Chef Bob shares his holiday dessert ideas for using fresh pomegranates, persimmons, and (the underappreciated) quince.

Pascal OlhatsThe Dean of French Chefs in Orange County is the ever charming Pascal Olhats of the Pascal Epicerie in Newport Beach. This is located next door to the site of his long-running Traditions by Pascal fine dining restaurant which he sold last year. Pascal originally came to Orange County in 1984 to open Hotel Le Meridian in Newport Beach. The property is now the Fairmont Newport Beach. Earlier in his career he worked for Master Chef Paul Bocuse (a French culinary legend) in Lyon.

In Newport Beach Pascal also operates Brasserie Pascal in Fashion Island and Café Jardin.

Pascal talks about a new fundraising effort he’s putting together to benefit the Orange County Food Bank.

How the French celebrate the Christmas meal is also part of the conversation.

Gavin kaysenGavin Kaysen is the greatly respected Executive Chef and Director of Culinary Operations for Daniel Boulud’s Café Boulud in New York, Palm Beach and Toronto.

He put previously San Diego on the national culinary map during his much-praised tenure at El Bizcocho at the Rancho Bernardo Inn. Fortunately for us he finds his way back to SoCal periodically to cook at fundraisers.

In his spare time he’s the Head Coach for Bocuse d’Or Team USA 2015. Chef Gavin has completed in this prestigious International Culinary Olympics and explains what the level of competition is all about. It’s a year of rigorous practice. Go Team USA in 2015!

Charlie TrotterEarlier in the month the food world lost Chef Charlie Trotter who was the first superstar celebrity chef in Chicago and influenced a network of young chefs. Charlie Trotter’s (the restaurant) on W. Armitage was known to foodies around the world for his innovative tasting menus and brilliant wine cellar.

Our own David LeFevre, the executive chef & partner of both MB Post and Fishing with Dynamite in Manhattan Beach worked for Charlie over a period of ten years in a couple of stints. David joins us to share memories of the real Charlie Trotter. Fortunately his legacy will live on.

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin of Lucques, A.O.C. and Tavern Part One
Segment Three: Chef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin of Lucques, A.O.C. and Tavern Part Two
Segment Four: Griffin Hammond, of “Sriracha – a documentary by Griffin Hammond.”
Segment Five: Chef Instructor Robert Wemischner of L.A. Trade-Tech College
Segment Six: Pascal Olhats, owner/chef of Pascal Epicerie, Brasserie Pascal, and Café Jardin
Segment Seven: Gavin Kaysen, Executive Chef and Director of Culinary Operations for Café Boulud
Segment Eight: David LeFevre, Executive Chef & Partner of MB Post and Fishing with Dynamite

Show 41, September 21, 2013: Executive Chef David LeFevre of Fishing with Dynamite

Chef David LeFevre of M.B. Post in Manhattan BeachExecutive Chef David LeFevre (ex-Water Grill) of the acclaimed Manhattan Beach Post and Fishing with Dynamite joined us.

Fishing with Dynamite in Manhattan Beach is his latest venture. It’s only 40 seats. The oyster bar is already enormously popular. They will serve some 300 to 700 oysters on a given day.

In a blind taste test Chef David explained how he could distinguish an East Coast oyster from a West Coast oyster. There are some different characteristics. He also shared some of his favorite types of oysters.

Chef LeFevre will be participating in the upcoming Thai Food Festival. He previews his dish for September 29th.

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September 21: Thai Food Fest preview with Susan Feniger, Kajsa Alger, David LeFevre

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Paul Greive, Farmer & Founder, Primal Pastures, Temecula Part One
Segment Three: Paul Greive, Farmer & Founder, Primal Pastures, Temecula Part Two
Segment Four: Executive Chef David LeFevre of Fishing with Dynamite
Segment Five: Celebrity Chef Susan Feniger, Proprietress of Susan Feniger’s Street
Segment Six: Kajsa (Sasha) Alger, Executive Chef and Partner, Susan Feniger’s Street
Segment Seven: Steve Samson and Zach Pollack, Co-Executive Chefs / Partners, Sotto Restaurant
Segment Eight: Neal Fraser, Executive Chef / Owner of bld

Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris preview the show.

Thai 2013 Food FestivalMark Sunday afternoon, September 29th on your calendar. Our very own Jet Tila is hosting the Thai 2013 Food Festival at Paramount Pictures Studios in the heart of Hollywood. It starts at 3:00 p.m.

Celebrity chefs from around the country and outstanding local Thai chefs will be there presenting their signature dishes for the guests to sample and enjoy. Entertainment will include music, Thai dancers and fruit carving.

VIP and Regular Tickets are now on sale!

Primal Pastures“Farmer Paul” Greive, the co-founder with his in-laws, of Primal Pastures in Temecula is with us. Primal Pastures is a pastured, “beyond organic and sustainable” livestock farm.

They just funded an amazing Kickstarter campaign to bankroll their expansion. The goal was to raise $40,000. Instead they realized $57,810.

They have recently leased over 200 acres of pastureland to expand.

“Our vision is to establish a “permaculture” – a system that effectively models the natural ecosystem with many varieties of plants and animals acting in synergy with one another on one farm. There are beautiful things that happen when cattle and sheep are incorporated with chickens, turkeys, and ducks.”

Chef David LeFevre of M.B. Post in Manhattan BeachExecutive Chef David LeFevre (ex-Water Grill) of the acclaimed Manhattan Beach Post and Fishing with Dynamite joins us.

Fishing with Dynamite in Manhattan Beach is his latest venture. It’s only 40 seats. The oyster bar is already enormously popular. They will serve some 300 to 700 oysters on a given day.

Chef LeFevre will be participating in the upcoming Thai Food Festival. He previews his dish for September 29th.

Susan Feniger of Border Grill and Susan Feniger's StreetSusan Feniger of Susan Feniger’s Street and Border Grill fame needs no introduction to listeners of the “SoCal Restaurant Show.” She was also one of the early super stars of Food Network with her business partner Mary Sue Milliken in the long running “Too Hot Tamales” series.

Susan Feniger’s Street will be a featured restaurant in the upcoming Thai Food Festival.

There are lots of Thai items on the regular Street menu.

The dish they are showcasing at the festival is Khao Gee, a Northeastern Thai snack.

Kajsa Alger of Susan Feniger's StreetKajsa Alger is the executive chef and partner for Susan Feniger’s Street.

As a teenager she snuck into the kitchen at CITY restaurant to begin an informal apprenticeship. That was the start of her long association with Susan and Mary Sue. She eventually rose to the post of Corporate Chef for all of Mary Sue and Susan’s restaurants.

She was on the Street project since the inception. There was months of intense recipe testing before the opening in 2009.

Kajsa is particularly proud of the Saturday and Sunday brunch menu they are offering until the end of the month. It’s an “All You Can Eat” small plate brunch with breakfast items as well as sandwiches and salads. It’s a modest $25 per guest and for an additional $15 you can partake of bottomless sparkling cocktails.

Steve Samson and Zach Pollack of SottoSteve Samson and Zach Pollack are the Executive Chefs and co-owners of Sotto near Century City in Los Angeles. They have an incredible wood-burning pizza oven that is from Sicily that was installed by Italian craftsmen. Orange County foodies remember them as the opening culinary team for highly-regarded Pizzeria Ortica.

In-mid-August they were the only Los Angeles chefs to be invited by Chef Javier Plascencia (the Wolfgang Puck of Northern Baja) to join with acclaimed San Diego chefs to prepare a seven-course, wine-paired meal at Chef Javier’s ranch, Finca Altozano, located in the Guadalupe Valley, Mexico’s premier wine region. Each course was matched with an appropriate Baja wine from the local region. This was one event as part of a bigger annual vintners’ festival.

Steve’s and Zach’s dish was a beautiful spit-roasted lamb loin.

Restaurateur Javier Plascencia has Romesco in Bonita in the United States and multiple restaurants in Tijuana including Mision 19 and Caesar’s Restaurante Bar (where the original Caesar Salad was created.)

Neal Fraser of bld and RedbirdExecutive Chef Neal Fraser of bld joins us.

Chef Fraser is a contestant on Bravo’s “Top Chef Masters” this season. He comments on the ups and downs he experienced as a competitor. He observed that it’s a lot harder than he anticipated. That’s significant given that he previously bested an Iron Chef on Food Network’s “Iron Chef America”.

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Paul Greive, Farmer & Founder, Primal Pastures, Temecula Part One
Segment Three: Paul Greive, Farmer & Founder, Primal Pastures, Temecula Part Two
Segment Four: Executive Chef David LeFevre of Fishing with Dynamite
Segment Five: Celebrity Chef Susan Feniger, Proprietress of Susan Feniger’s Street
Segment Six: Kajsa (Sasha) Alger, Executive Chef and Partner, Susan Feniger’s Street
Segment Seven: Steve Samson and Zach Pollack, Co-Executive Chefs / Partners, Sotto Restaurant
Segment Eight: Neal Fraser, Executive Chef / Owner of bld

On the horizon for Chef Neal is a bld at LAX in the United Terminal and a casual ice cream, donuts, and coffee café.

Show 34, July 6, 2013: On the Town with Chef Jet, Sherry Yard, and Producer Andy

Everyone shared their 4th Of July celebrations.

Jet hosed an intimate backyard cookout. He has an incredible built-in brick grilling unit in his backyard that’s great for picnic entertaining.

Sherry YardSherry did some bike riding with her husband along the bike path in Manhattan Beach.

She also savored the beach view of all the fireworks festivities along the South Bay.

Producer Andy enjoyed the annual Community Celebration and Fireworks Spectacular in El Segundo (Mayberry by the Sea) in Recreation Park. It was a full day of festivities including a pie eating contest and a watermelon eating contest.

All the food booths were operated by El Segundo Community and school groups. The grilled hot dogs and hamburgers available before the fireworks show were prepared by the El Segundo Community & School Groups.

What’s a 4th of July without grilled hot dogs?  Congrats to fellow Californian, Joey “Jaws” Chestnut, winner for the 7th consecutive year of the Nathan’s Famous Coney Island Hot Dog Challenge. He set a new World Record of 69 hot dogs and buns consumed in 10 minutes!

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Show 21, March 16, 2013: Paul Hibler, owner of Pitfire Artisan Pizza and American Gonzo Food Corporation

Paul Hibler of Pitfire Pizza and Superba Snack BarPitfire’s dough proofs for multiple days before baking and is unusually cooked in a wood-burning oven. The original unit in North Hollywood opened in 1989.

Expansion is something that has only happened in recent years. Paul likes to think of his units as the anti-chain. There are now seven locations. Each one is a bit different in design and all are family-friendly.

In the last year new locations have been added in Costa Mesa (the first unit in Orange County) and Manhattan Beach. The Costa Mesa Pitfire has a lounge in back with a full liquor license. All of the other Pitfire’s are beer & wine only.

American Gonzo Food Corporation’s first project is Superba Snack Bar in Venice which launched last July. The menu maker there is Chef Jason Neroni.

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