Show 244, October 14, 2017: Robert Schueller, Melissa’s Prince of Produce

Melissa's Robert Schueller at the SoCal Restaurant Show 5th AnniversaryRobert Schueller of Melissa’s is our resident authority on all things fruits and vegetables. He is the produce guru. If it’s legally grown (or imported) in the United States and Robert doesn’t know about it then it probably doesn’t exist!

This morning it’s the best of the season including Melissa’s Dutch Yellow Potatoes, Pearl Onions, Green Dragon Apples, Winter Crunch Grapes, Steamed Beets and Lentils. Also, Melissa’s new and expanding line of Clean Snax.

“Dutch Yellow Potatoes from Idaho are considered waxy as they remain dense and moist when cooked. The DYP also cooks a lot quicker than other kinds of potatoes. It is also the only potato variety that is not light sensitive, so it does not turn a greenish hue when exposed to light for an extended length of time.”

Melissa’s new CLEAN SNAX® comes in seven tasty mixes: Almond, Pumpkin Seed, Coconut, Quinoa, Cranberry, Carrot Cake, and Matcha.

Each convenient clamshell package contains 5-6 servings of delicious bite-sized squares that are packed with nutrient-dense ingredients like chia and flax seeds, nuts and more.

They are the perfect snack for kids and adults that satisfy both sweet and salty cravings in deliciously healthy nuggets of natural flavors.

All CLEAN SNAX® mixes are vegetarian, gluten free, low-fat, low-sodium and contain no artificial ingredients.



Show 244, October 14, 2017: JC Clow, Founding Managing Partner, The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar

Andy Harris, Andrew Gruel and JC Clow of the Winery Restaurant and Wine Bar at the SoCal Restaurant Show 5th AnniversaryOver the past decade at The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar, Partners JC Clow, William Lewis and Chef Yvon Goetz have created quite a stir by successfully pairing contemporary California regional cuisine, with a hip, vibrant, sophisticated setting, to create a cutting-edge dining experience. They are also noted for their deep and carefully curated wine cellars. Located at The District in Tustin and on the Bay in Newport Beach, The Winery was named “Restaurant of the Year” by the Orange County Concierge Association in its first year in business.

The 3rd location of The Winery Restaurant will launch before year’s end in La Jolla in the lavishly renovated Westfield UTC. The restaurant menu will focus on contemporary California regional cuisine at its finest, with Executive Chef & Partner Yvon Goetz directing a team that delivers a culinary experience straight from the Wine Country.

At The Winery La Jolla, Chef Goetz’s menu will feature wild game and USDA Prime Steaks, as well as Pacific Rim flavorings, such as fresh line-caught Opah, Mong Chong, Ono & Mahi Mahi flown in daily from Hawaii.  Tying the expansive wine list into the menu, Chef Goetz will feature numerous wine-infused ingredients into many of his signature dishes.

“At The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar, we pride ourselves on really focusing on our guest experience. Our third location to open in La Jolla will have the same level of service, with highly skilled Chefs to orchestrate a warm and passionate menu created by our award-winning Chef Yvon Goetz, and a team of Certified Sommeliers to oversee an incredible wine program,” explained JC Clow, Founding Partner of The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar. “It’s exciting to join a group of retailers that are among the best in their respective fields. We anticipate endless possibilities, with something to suit every palate.”

Restaurateur and Managing Partner JC Clow is our guest.


Show 244, October 14, 2017: Chef Jet Tila, 101 Asian Dishes You Need To Cook Before You Die

Chef Ida Rodriquez of Melissa's World Variety Produce and Jet TilaCelebrity Chef Jet Tila (Food Network’s “Cutthroat Kitchen with Alton Brown”) was the original Co-host of the “SoCal Restaurant Show” in 2012, 2013 and 2014. We gratefully appreciate his key contribution in establishing the “SoCal Restaurant Show.”

His new cookbook which is already generating a wok-ful of well-deserved praise is 101 Asian Dishes You Need To Cook Before You Die. Great gift idea for the Holidays for someone who is a genuine food fan.

Just launched is Jet’s 5-part video series on Facebook, Authentically Asian with Jet Tila. It’s equal parts travel log and stress-free cooking show. Episode One is “PHOnomenal Adventure” and Episode Two is “Korean BBQ” with Chef Chris Oh Oh (HANJIP.)

Jet also holds numerous Guinness World Records for creating unusual, large format foods. Earlier this week he guided students at SUNY Purchase College to set a new World Record for the longest California Roll. It was measured at 504 feet. 300 pounds of sushi rice and 650 sheets of Nori…!

Chef Jet joins us.


Show 244, October 14, 2017: Food Journalist & Author Cathy Thomas

Andy Harris, Andrew Gruel and Cathy Thomas at the SoCal Restaurant Show 5th AnniversaryFood Journalist Cathy Thomas has been the highly-regarded food columnist for the Orange County Register for over 26 years. Most of that time was as the greatly-admired  Food Editor. In addition to that she is the online columnist for Orange Coast Magazine where you can view many of her entertaining and informative cooking videos featuring area and celebrity chefs.

“My first book was published in 2006, “Melissa’s Great Book of Produce” (Wiley, $29.95, 2006 written for Melissa’s World Variety Produce, the LA-Based company that is the nation’s largest distributor of specialty and organic produce). My second book is “Melissa’s Everyday Cooking with Organic Produce” (Wiley, $29.95). The book has received fantastic reviews. Emeril plugged the book on Good Morning America, naming it as one of the top ten cookbooks for the season. My third book, “50 Best Plants on the Planet (Chronicle, $29.95) explores the fifty most nutrient dense fruits and vegetables that grow on earth. The recipes are easy and delicious.”

Represented on the buffet today in the Melissa’s Test Kitchen is Cathy’s recipe for Hearts of Romaine Salad with Beets, Apples and Creamy Blue Cheese Dressing. It features Melissa’s Steamed Beets and Green Dragon Apples. The recipe is from Melissa’s Everyday Cooking with Organic Produce.

“Because I’ve studied with chefs across America, Europe and Asia, I have a passion for ethnic cuisines. I love to embrace new flavors, new aromas and new techniques. When it comes to cooking and eating, there is always something new to experience.”

We’ll pull Cathy away from the cutting board for a chat.


Show 244, October 14, 2017: Tess Masters, The Blender Girl

Tess Masters with her Tastes Like Ice Creeam Kale SmoothieTess Masters is an actor, presenter, cook, lifestyle personality, and author of The Blender Girl, The Blender Girl Smoothies, The Perfect Blend, and creator of The Blender Girl Smoothies app with Random House. She shares her enthusiasm for healthy living at

“In the third installment of The Blender Girl cookbook series (The Perfect Blend – 100 Blender Recipes to Energize and Revitalize), Tess serves up 100 smoothies, tonics, soups, salads, appetizers, snacks, main dishes, desserts, and condiments to help you lead a vibrant, healthy life, and have fun.”

“Anchored to a master list of nutrient-dense ingredients, each of the twelve chapters addresses specific health goals, such as gaining energy, optimizing protein intake, boosting immunity, losing weight, and reducing inflammation. Tess lists the foods that can help you stay in optimal health, and shares a few top-line takeaways for each of them-practical information on their health benefits, and how to prepare, blend, and cook them for amazing textures and tastes.

“There are three optional boosters listed for each recipe that enhance flavor and/or nutrition. I’ve chosen them to work separately or together, so you can supplement any base recipe with one, two, or all three. The food is functional and geared toward flexibility, so you can tailor the recipes to your own taste and requirements to find your perfect blend.”

Tess’ recipe for Tastes-Like-Ice-Cream Green Smoothie from The Blender Girl and the Blender Girl Smoothies App is represented on the Melissa’s buffet this morning. It’s properly decadent…

Tess has tested virtually every blender out there that works in a home kitchen. She shares some wisdom on selecting the right blender.



Show 244, October 14, 2017: Tom Fraker, Melissa’s Corporate Chef & Test Kitchen Manager

Melissa's Produce Tom Fraker at the SoCal Restaurant Show 5th Anniversary BuffetTom Fraker, a Melissa’s Corporate Chef and the manager of the Melissa’s Corporate Test Kitchen, came to cooking late as a second career. He was the oldest student in his class at the California School of Culinary Arts Le Cordon Bleu and was the recipient of a lot of teasing.

As a high-profile Melissa’s representative he participates in special events, trade shows, and culinary functions throughout the country. He also creates many of the great, tested recipes on the genuinely useful Melissa’s Website that are designed to be easy-to-prepare winners in home kitchens.

We’ll chat with Chef Tom about choosing and cooking with peppers. We’ll be highlighting recipes from Melissa’s The Great Pepper Cookbook – The Ultimate Guide to Choosing and Cooking with Peppers. On the menu are items like Crab Stuffed Cucumber Cups, Devlish Deviled Eggs, Brussels and Kale Sprouts Salad, Potato and Cauliflower Bake, Pollo en Crema, Chile-Lime-Jackfruit Puffs and Apple Cinnamon-Chile Crumb Cake.

Tom created most of the recipes for Melissa’s The Great Pepper Cookbook – The Ultimate Guide to Choosing and Cooking with Peppers. These were all represented on the buffet in the Melissa’s Test Kitchen for the audience to enjoy at the 5th Anniversary celebration of the “SoCal Restaurant Show.”


Show 244, October 14, 2017: Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish and Trade’s Two Birds & Butterleaf

William, Andrew and Lauren GruelChef Andrew Gruel rejoins us after launching the first Slapfish in New Mexico in Albuquerque.

Chef Andrew and Lauren dine out often with their young son, William. We’ll get Chef Andrew’s informed thoughts about managing young kids in restaurants and what the parents’ responsibilities are.

Both Slapfish and Butterleaf were part of last Saturday afternoon’s Oozefest 3 (cheese festival of epic proportions) at Main Place Mall in Santa Ana. Slapfish is bringing back the Lobsticle with queso dip, a signature item from the original food truck.


Show 243, October 7, 2017: Chef Jacques Pépin, A Grandfathers Lessons – In the Kitchen with Shorey Part One

Jacques PepinThe grand master of cooking in America, Jacques Pepin, has a new apprentice in the kitchen: his granddaughter, Shorey. The new, light-hearted cookbook is A Grandfather’s Lessons: In the Kitchen with Shorey.

Jacques Pépin is probably the most famous cooking teacher in the world, renowned for his knife skills. Ever since she was very young, his granddaughter, Shorey, has loved “helping” him in the kitchen. Now that she is twelve, Jacques gives his charismatic pupil a short course on preparing “food that is plain, but elegant, and more than anything, fun.” In the process, he proves himself as inspiring to her as he is to the country’s greatest chefs.

Curly hot dogs; spinach with croutons; sushi salmon cakes; skillet bread and homemade butter; raspberry cake: These recipes will become irresistible new classics for kids. Along the way, Jacques imparts lessons in kitchen etiquette, from how to set a table to how to fold a napkin properly — even how to load a dishwasher. And perhaps the most important lesson of all: that the best meals are the ones shared at home with family.



Show 243, October 7, 2017: Chef Jacques Pépin, A Grandfathers Lessons – In the Kitchen with Shorey Part Two

Jacques PepinOne of the great bonuses of the creative book is the companion video series—full of additional recipes and tips, plus more Jacques and Shorey—at Sur Le Table’s website. 33 of the fun recipes in A Grandfather’s Lessons are entertainingly demonstrated by Jacques and Shorey.

BIO: One of the world’s most famous cooking teachers and educators, Jacques Pépin has published more than twenty-five cookbooks, including his new book, Jacques Pépin Poulet & Legumes and his PBS tie-in cookbook Jacques Pépin: Heart & Soul in the Kitchen and his memoir, The Apprentice: My Life in the Kitchen. He has also starred in fourteen acclaimed cooking series on public television and is a contributing editor to Food & Wine magazine. Jacques shares his knowledge through the curriculum and teaching at International Culinary Center where he has been a dean since joining in 1988.

Before coming to the United States, Jacques served as the personal chef to Charles de Gaulle. Jacques has won many accolades and awards, including a prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award from the James Beard Foundation in 2005, several IACP Cookbook Awards, the Legion of Honor, France’s highest distinction and was named the first recipient of the Julia Child Award by the Julia Foundation for Gastronomy and the Culinary Arts. He lives with his wife, Gloria, in Madison, Connecticut.


Show 243, October 7, 2017: Carolynn Carreño, Bowls of Plenty

Carolyn CarrenoBowls of Plenty – Recipes for Healthy and Delicious Whole-Grain Meals is a fresh and flexible approach to grain bowls–thoughtfully structured one-dish meals that marry health and flavor–from James Beard Award-winning journalist and acclaimed cookbook coauthor Carolynn Carreno. The Foreword is by Nancy Silverton. We’ll meet Carolynn.

Gorgeous, layered, satisfying bowls have become the next wave of healthy eating. From food blogs to Instagram, farm-to-table bistros to chain restaurants, “the bowl” has become part of our culinary vocabulary. And whole grains are not just for hippies and health nuts anymore! Hearty grains like quinoa, farro, millet, and spelt are replacing flour or corn tortillas, bread, pasta, white rice, and mashed potatoes as the base or vehicle for other, richer, more complex ingredients. What’s more, grain bowls are easy-to-make, and family-friendly, and convenient for busy home cooks and weekend chefs alike.

Carolynn joins us.