Show 162, March 5, 2016: C-CAP L.A. Program Director Lisa Fontanesi and Celebrity Chef Sherry Yard

City of GoldPulitzer Prize-winning food critic Jonathan Gold will join local non-profit C-CAP LA (Careers through Culinary Arts Program) at their upcoming fundraiser at the Westside Pavilion on Monday, March 14, 2016, featuring a VIP screening of City of Gold, a documentary that details Gold’s journey through Los Angeles’ cultural culinary scene. Following the screening will be a Q & A with filmmaker Laura Gabbert and Jonathan Gold moderated by KCRW’s “Good Food” host, Chef Evan Kleiman.

Taking place at The Wine Bar at the Landmark Theaters Westside Pavilion, the City of Gold event begins with a reception featuring premium wines from the Wine Exchange and craft beer from El Segundo Brewery and Smog City Brewing Co. as well as some of Gold’s favorite foods including sliders from West Coast Prime Meats, pork tostadas from Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken’s Border Grill, crudités and fruit from Melissa’s Produce, desserts from Spago and an oyster bar, courtesy of Michael Cimarusti’s new Cape Seafood and Provisions.

The reception will be followed by a special screening of City of Gold, accompanied by gourmet popcorn prepared by Sherry Yard. After screening the film, KCRW Good Food’s Evan Kleiman will moderate a Q&A session with Gold and Gabbert.

Sherry YardThe City of Gold fundraiser will take place on Monday, March 14 at the Landmark Theaters Westside Pavilion located at 10850 West Pico Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90064. The reception begins at 6:00 PM and the 91 minute documentary will begin at 7:30 PM, followed by the Q&A session. Tickets are $101 and can be purchased at ccapinc.org. Proceeds support C-CAP’s program in the Los Angeles Region.

C-CAP L.A. Program Director, Lisa Fontanesi and James Beard Award-winning Chef Sherry Yard (also a C-CAP National Board Member) join us with the 411 on the edible evening.

Go here to see more about the City of Gold screening.

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Show 53, December 21, 2013: Alain Cohen of Got Kosher Café & Bakery, Los Angeles

f you think Tunisian fare is the same as the foods of Morocco then you perhaps need a refresher course. No eating with the fingers or belly dancers here. It’s actually more Mediterranean and North African fare.

Alain Cohen of Got Kosher Cafe and BakeryAlain Cohen of Got Kosher Café & Bakery located in Los Angeles’ Borscht Belt on Pico Blvd. joins us to give a quick education. Don’t let the “Kosher” part or the name scare you. The Jews (and the Romans) were in Tunisia before Muhammad or the rise of Islam.

The tasty Merguez sausage with harissa (born in Tunisa) appetizer is house-made.

One of Got Kosher’s specialties is “Shwar-guez.” It’s their take on schwarma. It’s ground beef seasoned with their merguez sausage spices and grilled on a schwarma pit.

Tunisian Couscous is also a popular specialty. The versions are Couscous au Poulet, Couscous Masson (with braised beef and beef meatballs,) Couscous Royal ( with chicken, beef, lamb brochettes and merguez,) and Vegetarian Couscous.

They also house-bake some incredible varieties of challah.

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December 21: Troy Johnson, Got Kosher, Aaron Fry, Susan Feniger, Brian Malarkey, Brian Malarkey,

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Troy Johnson, Editor-at-Large & Food Critic of San Diego Magazine Part One
Segment Three: Troy Johnson, Editor-at-Large & Food Critic of San Diego Magazine Part Two
Segment Four: Alain Cohen of Got Kosher Café & Bakery, Los Angeles
Segment Five: Aaron Fry, Honeymoon Dining in Maui
Segment Six: Celebrity Chef Susan Feniger of The Border Grills and Mud Hen Tavern
Segment Seven: Executive Chef Brian Malarkey of Enlightened Hospitality Group, San Diego Part One
Segment Eight: Executive Chef Brian Malarkey of Enlightened Hospitality Group, San Diego Part Two

Update on the benefit at The Church Key on Sunday, December 8th to aid the unfortunate victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. The evening raised $10,000 which will get into the proper hands to support the relief effort. This event came together very quickly so kudos to all involved!

What's Cooking with Jet Tila and Travis RodgersThanks for all the supportive words about “What’s Cooking with Travis and Chef Jet Tila” heard just after 7:50 a.m. on Friday morning on AM 830 KLAA as part of “The Travis Rodgers Show.” Travis is taking a well-earned Holiday break. The segment will return just after 7:50 a.m. on Friday, January 4th. The previous features are all available for your listening pleasure within the “Media” area of the “SoCal Restaurant Show” Website.

Chef Jet and Producer Andy preview the show. This week we’re sending the well-deserved love to our listeners in San Diego. Troy Johnson, the Restaurant Editor of San Diego Magazine is with us to share what’s new in San Diego. We’ll also talk with “Top Chef” alum Brian Malarkey of Enlightened Hospitality. He’s bringing one of his successful San Diego restaurant concepts to the Sunset Strip.

Troy JohnsonTroy Johnson, the Food Editor of San Diego Magazine, represents the new breed of youthful restaurant journalists with a point-of-view. It’s, fortunately, not an elitist approach and Troy aims to make restaurant-going accessible for all.

You perhaps remember him on Food TV from his Cooking Channel series, “Crave.” He’s also one of the regular judges on Food Network’s new Sunday evening “Guy’s (Fieri) Grocery Games.”

There is a lot happening on the San Diego restaurant scene. The big noise is that chef and restaurateur Richard Blais is leaving his base in Atlanta to open Juniper & Ivy in the Little Italy area of San Diego. It will seat 200 when open so this is an ambitious project! Chef Blais is probably best known nationally for his multiple seasons on Bravo’s “Top Chef.”

Celebrity Chef Brian Malarkey (of Bravo’s “Top Chef” & ABC’s “The Taste”,) a multiple concept restaurant operator in San Diego, is bringing his Herringbone concept to The Mondrian Hotel on The Sunset Strip in West Hollywood in early 2014. Troy talks about Chef Brian’s history in San Diego and what his establishments are all about. The original Herringbone is in La Jolla.

The Headquarters, a new development in Downtown San Diego with destination restaurants is creating a lot of attention. Nancy Silverton’s Pizzeria Mozza from Hollywood is one on the anchor tenants there already attracting lots of buzz. It’s the former Police Department Headquarters and there is even an original cell preserved for visitors to see.

Avant Restaurant in San DiegoAfter a long run (opened in 1968) as a high-end destination restaurant of celebration El Bizcocho at the Rancho Bernardo Inn has been reborn as the more contemporary Avant. San Diego star chef Gavin Kaysen was an alum of El Bizcocho. He’s now overseeing all the Café Bouluds for Daniel Boulud in New York!

Troy notes that the Hatch Design Group worked on a $2.5 million budget to create the new space. “The mercy killing of El Bizcocho clears the way for a new era at Avant” is the title of Troy’s recent review in San Diego Magazine.

If you think Tunisian fare is the same as the foods of Morocco then you perhaps need a refresher course. No eating with the fingers or belly dancers here. It’s actually more Mediterranean and North African fare.

Alain Cohen of Got Kosher Cafe and BakeryAlain Cohen of Got Kosher Café & Bakery located in Los Angeles Borscht Belt on Pico Blvd. joins us to give a quick education. Don’t let the “Kosher” part or the name scare you. The Jews were in Tunisia before Muhammad or the rise of Islam.

The tasty Merguez sausage with harissa appetizer is house-made.

One of Got Kosher’s specialties is “Shwar-guez.” It’s their take on schwarma. It’s ground beef seasoned with their merguez sausage spices and grilled on a schwarma pit.

Tunisian Couscous is also a popular specialty. The versions are Couscous au Poulet, Couscous Masson (with braised beef and beef meatballs,) Couscous Royal ( with chicken, beef, lamb brochettes and merguez,) and Vegetarian Couscous.

They also house-bake some incredible varieties of challah

It’s Christmas / New Year’s Holiday vacation time and that means a lot of getaways to Maui. We have a mouth-watering Lahaina dining report from an informed, recent visitor.

Aaron Fry just returned from his glorious honeymoon in Maui. Aaron is a master bartender as well as a senior Board Operator right here at AM 830 KLAA. We’re turning the microphone around on him this morning.

Fleetwoods on Front StreetAaron and his new bride enjoyed a couple of visits to Fleetwood’s on Front Street in the heart of Old Lahaina. The second level of the 10,000 square foot establishment affords an incredible ocean view and there is live music nightly. The principal is Mick Fleetwood, the well-know rock drummer. When he’s not touring he spends most of his time on Maui.

Although it’s a casual setting they are equally serious about their food. The chef advisor is Scott Leibfried (who you’ll remember as one of the two sous chefs for Gordon Ramsay on Fox’s “Hell’s Kitchen.”) Chef Scott continues with the project.

Look for “Today’s Local Fish” and the 10 oz. Grilled Filet with Big Island Hamakua Mushrooms as standout dishes.

Maui Brewing Company CoCoNut PorTeRAaron is a craft beer aficionado so also on his Maui menu was a stop at the celebrated brewpub of the Maui Brewing Co. This is the most successful craft brewery in The Islands and quite a story. Their only “problem” is that they can’t keep up with demand on The Mainland. They can their most popular styles and they are available in California. One of their signature brews is their award-winning CoCoNut PorTeR. The brewpub features some seasonal styles only available on Maui.

The food is seriously good, too, and a big attraction for locals. They even make their own salad dressings. You can’t go wrong with their pizzas or the Kalua Pork Sliders.

Susan Feniger of Mud Hen TavernChef Susan Feniger of Border Grill and Food Network’s “Too Hot Tamales” fame is back with us to talk about the revamping of Susan Feniger’s Street in Hollywood. It’s been refurbished as the Mud Hen Tavern. The concept is more of a comfortable neighborhood bar and restaurant where regulars can come and hang out more than one time per week.

As with Street the Executive Chef and Partner is Kajsa Alger. Some of Street’s classic favorites remain on the menu including Kaya Toast. A rotating collection of sixteen craft beers is available on tap.

Susan enthusiastically recommends the Hangover Burger with a fried egg and bacon and the decadent Cinnamon Roll Bread Pudding for dessert. Also there are plenty of offerings for the vegetarian-inclined.

Brian MalarkeyYou know Chef Brian Malarkey from “Top Chef: Season 3, Miami” on Bravo and Season 1 of ABC’s “The Taste.” In real life he’s also a highly successful restaurateur in San Diego (and Scottsdale and Austin) with major financial backing.

In a bold move he’s bringing an expanded Herringbone (La Jolla) to The Mondrian on the fabled Sunset Strip in January. After a major gut-rehab it’s replacing the pricey Asia de Cuba at this hip & happening boutique luxury hotel. The panoramic 180 degree view from the restaurant toward the coast, now improved, is pretty spectacular. He’s responsible for all foodservice at The Hotel including in-room dining and functions.

The food is Herringbone’s own “Fish Meats Field” cuisine. A favorite is Pork Belly with wood roasted sunchokes, manila clams, and calvados and green apple jus.

Executive Chef Brian Mararkey of Enlightened Hospitality Group encores for a second segment. His growing collection of restaurants, with a San Diego base, includes Searsucker, Herringbone (La Jolla and January opening in West Hollywood,) Gabardine, and Green Acre.

Chef Brian has cooked in Los Angeles previously. Very early in his professional career he was in the kitchen at Michel Richard’s Citrus.

Chef Brian very honestly explains how he paid his dues during his 20s and 30s before becoming the executive chef at The Oceanaire Seafood Room in San Diego. That eventually led to his casting on Bravo’s “Top Chef.” He’s surprised that so many young people graduating from culinary schools think they can just walk into being celebrities on food TV without a proper foundation.

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Troy Johnson, Editor-at-Large & Food Critic of San Diego Magazine Part One
Segment Three: Troy Johnson, Editor-at-Large & Food Critic of San Diego Magazine Part Two
Segment Four: Alain Cohen of Got Kosher Café & Bakery, Los Angeles
Segment Five: Aaron Fry, Honeymoon Dining in Maui
Segment Six: Celebrity Chef Susan Feniger of The Border Grills and Mud Hen Tavern
Segment Seven: Executive Chef Brian Malarkey of Enlightened Hospitality Group, San Diego Part One
Segment Eight: Executive Chef Brian Malarkey of Enlightened Hospitality Group, San Diego Part Two

Show 32, June 22, 2013: Chefs Steve Samson and Zach Pollack of Sotto in Los Angeles

Steve Samson and Zach Pollack of SottoSamson and Pollack are the co-executive chefs and partners (with restaurateur Bill Chait) in Sotto on Pico Blvd in West Los Angeles. The exterior has a very New York-brownstone feel. The restaurant is actually located a few steps below the sidewalk. Above is Picca featuring the cooking of executive chef Ricardo Zarate.

Steve Samson’s mother is Italian so the foods of Northern Italy are something he grew up with. During the time he was with Piero Selvaggio of Valentino fame (Santa Monica & Las Vegas) he traveled extensively in Italy to master regional Italian cuisine. Sotto is actually their interpretation of Southern Italian fare.

Zach is not Italian. His love affair with Italy started when he was a college student studying architecture in Florence. He is a master at preparing the authentic Naples-style pizza. His special Italian wood-burning pizza oven was actually shipped to Los Angeles from Italy and assembled on-site by skilled Italian masons.

In the mornings they bake the Sotto bread in that oven.

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Show 8: December 1, 2012: Jason Kessler of Food Republic and Bon Appetit Part Three

We unfortunately weren’t able to connect with Pamela Sheldon Johns who is a Italian culinary expert and cookbook author who now lives in Tuscany on an agricultural estate with olive trees, a cooking school, and a bed and breakfast. She is on a brief SoCal book tour for Cucina Povera, Tuscan Peasant Food. She will be a Zov’s Bistro in Tustin on Saturday, Dec. 8th @ 11:30 a.m. teaching a full menu from the book using her own estate olive oil. All the details are on Zov’s website.

Jason Kessler then continued his conversation with Jet and revealed a discovery. Jason is from Chicago and he’s finally uncovered a deep dish pizza spot that’s comparable to the best in Chicago!

In the Fairfax district he’s become a fan of Hollywood Pies @ 6616 and ½ W. Pico Blvd. Phone – (323) 337-3212. This underground spot has been at various locations and recently moved here. It’s take-out or delivery right now with seating planned for the future. If you’re out of their delivery area you need to call ahead and order. At the scheduled pick-up time you call from the curb and the pizza comes out to you.

Open nightly but closed on Monday.

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November 24: Ricardo Zarate, Inn at Europa Village, Deep End Dining, Marche Moderne

Podcasts

Segment One: Chef Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef Dean A. Thomas, Innkeeper (with his wife, Nicole) of The Inn At Europa Village and Executive Chef de Cuisine at Europa Village Winery and Tasting Room
Segment Three: Eddie Lin of the blog “Deep End Dining” and the new Web series for YouTube, “Kamikaze Kitchen.”
Segment Four: Eddie Lin Part Two
Segment Five: Chef Ricardo Zarate and Business Partner & Restaurateur Stephane Bombet of Picca in West Los Angeles and Mo-Chica in Downtown Los Angeles
Segment Six: Ricardo Zarate and Stephane Bombet Part Two
Segment Seven: Amelia Marneau of Marche Moderne in The Penthouse (Level 3) at South Coast Plaza
Segment Eight: Food TV Producer and Culinary Personality Eric Boardman

The Holidays are upon us and the “SoCal Restaurant Show” is getting into the spirit of the season. It’s a stuffed grab bag of entertaining info this week.

Ever wonder what a busy chef (and new father) does for his own Family on Thanksgiving? Chef Jet gives us the behind-the-scenes on his Thanksgiving 2012.

The picturesque Temecula Valley Wine Country is only 90-minutes from most of Los Angeles and is a great local getaway with numerous inviting attractions including a winery for every palate and budget.

In the last year The Inn at Europa Village (located on a hilltop with an unrivaled view of the Valley) has been remodeled and enhanced, and now defines the standard of truly memorable bed and breakfast establishments in the Temecula Valley.

The personable Innkeepers are the dynamic duo of Executive Chef Dean Thomas and his wife, Nicole. Chef Dean also oversees the culinary operations at the neighboring Europa Village Tasting Room & Vineyards.

We’ll talk with Dean about his unusual hands-on approach to managing a bed and breakfast and the show-stopping breakfasts he creates with premium local ingredients for his appreciative guests every morning!

Eddie Lin of Deep End DiningJoining Jet in studio will be Asian food blogger extraordinaire and culinary personality Eddie Lin. You may know him from “Deep-End Dining.” He also has a new Web series, “Kamikaze Kitchen.”

Eddie’s most recent assignment is as a contributor to Los Angeles Magazine’sDigest” blog.

Peruvian cuisine has captured the attention of SoCal foodies. At the forefront is Chef Ricardo Zarate who achieved fame in L.A. with his hole-in-the wall spot, Mo-Chica, originally located in the Mercado La Paloma just East of the USC campus. This was later relocated to a more ambitious and expanded space Downtown at 514 W. Seventh St.

Ricardo Zarate of Mo-Chica and PiccaBefore that Ricardo and his business partner Stephane Bombet launched the upscale Picca (Peruvian/Japanese small plates) on W. Pico Blvd. just East of Century City.

A new spot in Marina del Rey is on the horizon.

Jet will chat with both Chef Ricardo and Stephane Bombet about their expanding restaurant empire which started quite modestly.

Our vote for nicest couple in the hospitality business in Orange County has to be Florent and Amelia Marneau who are the greatly respected proprietors of the acclaimed Marche Moderne located in The Penthouse (Level 3) at South Coast Plaza.

Since they opened in 2007 the restaurant has earned the reputation as the premier French restaurant in Orange County and beyond. Florent is behind the stoves and Amelia creates the incredible desserts and also graciously runs the front-of-the-house.

Throughout the year they do noteworthy special events to keep their establishment fresh. This morning Amelia joins the show to preview Marche Moderne’s “40 Days of Champagne and Caviar” Holiday Celebration. Nightly until December 30th Marche is showcasing a nightly special menu of six top caviar selections and bubbly from four renowned Champagne houses along with the traditional accoutrements and caviar-friendly cocktails. If you don’t think that says “Holidays” with a flourish then forget about it…

Finally Careers through Culinary Arts Program Los Angeles Advisory Board Member (and food TV producer) Eric Boardman is with us to discuss the spirited C-CAP alum competition in the style of Food Network’s “Chopped” that was part of last Saturday’s “Getting Our Just Desserts” Benefit at The Art Institute of California-Los Angeles’ campus in Santa Monica. Eric was the Master of Ceremonies for the competition and shares the results.

Podcasts

Segment One: Chef Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef Dean A. Thomas, Innkeeper (with his wife, Nicole) of The Inn At Europa Village and Executive Chef de Cuisine at Europa Village Winery and Tasting Room
Segment Three: Eddie Lin of the blog “Deep End Dining” and the new Web series for YouTube, “Kamikaze Kitchen.”
Segment Four: Eddie Lin Part Two
Segment Five: Chef Ricardo Zarate and Business Partner & Restaurateur Stephane Bombet of Picca in West Los Angeles and Mo-Chica in Downtown Los Angeles
Segment Six: Ricardo Zarate and Stephane Bombet Part Two
Segment Seven: Amelia Marneau of Marche Moderne in The Penthouse (Level 3) at South Coast Plaza
Segment Eight: Food TV Producer and Culinary Personality Eric Boardman