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!

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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 135, August 22, 2015: Max Schlutz, Culinary Director, Sessions West Coast Deli

We love a well-constructed sandwich on the “SoCal Restaurant Show.”

Max SchultzAfter a promising Orange County debut in Newport Beach in 2014, Sessions West Coast Deli has opened its second location on the waterfront in Huntington Beach (414 Pacific Coast Highway). Designed as a neighborhood-casual concept, this new restaurant serves its immediate community with a menu of gourmet, culinary-focused sandwiches in a relaxed, beach-inspired environment.

The Huntington Beach restaurant offers breakfast, lunch and dinner with a menu mirroring that of its Newport Beach counterpart. Guests are presented with nearly two dozen hot and cold sandwiches, a selection of salads, and gourmet sides on Sessions’ lunch and dinner menu, as well as ten signature sandwiches on its breakfast menu.

Sessions features a scratch kitchen with housemade sauces, sides, salads, and soups prepared in-house daily. All sandwiches are made to order with fresh, locally grown produce, humanely and naturally raised meats, and locally baked breads delivered daily from local artisan, OC Baking Company. In addition, the restaurant proudly serves a selection of locally roasted coffee beverages from Kean Coffee.

With the opening of the Huntington Beach location, Sessions sees the addition of nine new sandwiches to its already celebrated menu. Guests will still be able to enjoy their favorites, including the Summer Zephyr, with marinated vine-ripened tomato, wild baby arugula, fresh mozzarella, basil aioli, pickled red onion, and a balsamic reduction on french roll; and the Sloppy Barney, featuring spicy bbq pulled pork, jalapeño jack, house pickle, shaved red onion, and purple SoCal slaw on ciabatta.

All new sandwiches are featured at both locations, including the Geno, inspired by local surfer Gene “Sliding Machine” Petersen, who was voted on by the public to be honored in conjunction with the opening of the new Huntington Beach location.

 

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Show 135, August 22, 2015: Max Schlutz, Culinary Director, Sessions West Coast Deli Continues…

Max SchultzIn Spring 2014, when Sessions West Coast Deli opened its first location in Newport Beach, its owners had one mission: to serve the best sandwiches to ever hit the lip. As a neighborhood-casual concept designed to serve its immediate community, Sessions embraces the area’s surf culture as it presents a menu of gourmet, culinary-focused sandwiches in a relaxed environment. The term “West Coast Deli” perfectly describes the marriage of a high-quality deli menu with a chill vibe that appeals to area locals and tourists, alike.

In Summer 2015, Sessions opened its second Orange County location on the waterfront in Huntington Beach. The opening of this location reinforced Sessions’ dedication and commitment to its community by becoming a local hub for surfers, skaters and area beachgoers looking for great sandwiches.

Unlike most sandwich shops in the region, Sessions proudly boasts a scratch kitchen with housemade sauces, sides, salads, and soups prepared daily. All sandwiches are made to order with fresh, locally grown produce; humanely and naturally raised meats; and locally baked bread delivered daily from local artisan, OC Baking Company. In addition, the restaurant proudly serves a selection of locally roasted coffee beverages from Kean Coffee.

Max shares that the most popular sandwich is a vegetarian offering, Summer Zephyr, thoughtfully named after the spouse of one of the partners. It’s marinated vine-ripened tomato, wild baby arugula, fresh mozzarella, basil aioli, pickled red onion and balsamic reduction served on a fresh baked French roll.

 

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