June 12: Los Arboles Hotel, Bosscat Kitchen and Libations, Providence’s 16th Anniversary

We’re previewing the show with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris.

Hotelier and restaurateur Karina Castenda represents the 2nd generation of the founding family who owns Los Arboles Hotel (a Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotel) and the pair of El Mirasol Mexican restaurants. The original (and still operating) El Mirasol opened in 1985. The 2nd El Mirasol restaurant (North) is located adjacent to Los Arboles Hotel. El Mirasol makes their hot-off-the-grill corn tortillas on-site and is known for their wide variety of potent Margaritas. The signature Guacamole is prepared from chunks of fresh Haas avocado hand-blended with chopped tomatoes, scallions and cilantro.

Orange County restaurateurs Leslie Nguyen and John Reed (owners of Bosscat Kitchen and Libations) launched their third location this March on the corner of Chapman Avenue and Olive Street in Old Towne Orange at the previous Rod’s Liquor location, a 100- year old building.

“The 5,000 sq. ft. result is a beautifully modern space that is as authentic and nostalgic to Old Towne Orange as it is bold and eye-catching to fit Bosscat Kitchen’s brand. “Bosscat Kitchen & Libations creatively meshes upscale and casual dining with an expansive whiskey selection and unique menu of American comfort food. The high energy, open-spaced concept promotes a lively experience at all three locations. Their brick, metal, dark wood and whiskey barrel decor suits its comfort menu.”

For 16 years, Providence in Hollywood has elevated the standard of modern American seafood restaurants with exemplary service. Newly reopened for dine-in guests can again experience Chef Michael Cimarusti’s award-winning cuisine in the heart of Los Angeles, welcomed by one of L.A.’s legendary hosts, co-owner Donato Poto. Restaurateur Donato Poto is with us to reminisce, celebrate the 16th Anniversary and look to the future.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is continually updating us on the real impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants during the initial, highly fluid stages of the hoped-for recovery which remains a genuine concern. Now that guests are finally able to return to full-service restaurants in greater numbers maintaining civility is important. How far should it escalate with a problem guest before Management lets a customer know that their bad behavior won’t be tolerated? We’ll ask Chef Andrew.

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness (with proper Social Distancing) on this week’s not-to-miss show!

Karina Castenda of Los Arboles Hotel

Hotelier and restaurateur Karina Castenda represents the 2nd generation of the founding family who owns Los Arboles Hotel (a Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotel) and the pair of El Mirasol Mexican restaurants. The original (and still operating) El Mirasol opened in 1985. The 2nd El Mirasol restaurant (North) with a spacious patio is located adjacent to Los Arboles Hotel.

El Mirasol makes their corn tortillas on-site and is known for their wide variety of potent Margaritas. The signature Guacamole is prepared from chunks of fresh Haas avocado hand-blended with chopped tomatoes, scallions and cilantro. The El Mirasol restaurants are closed on Monday & Tuesday.

“A charming, historic boutique Palm Springs resort and home to the iconic El Mirasol Mexican Restaurant and bar, Los Arboles Hotel features 21 well-appointed rooms, heated pool, Jacuzzi, room service and is located walking distance from downtown shopping, dining, and nightlife.”

Karina Castenada joins us with a classic De La Casa Margarita in hand.

John Reed and Leslie Nguyen of Bosscat Kitchen and Libations

Orange County restaurateurs Leslie Nguyen and John Reed (owners of Bosscat Kitchen and Libations) launched their third location this March on the corner of Chapman Avenue and Olive Street in Old Towne Orange at the previous Rod’s Liquor location, a 100-year old building..

“The 5,000 sq. ft. result is a beautifully modern space that is as authentic and nostalgic to Old Towne Orange as it is bold and eye-catching to fit Bosscat Kitchen’s brand. Leslie Nguyen, Chief Designer, has drawn her inspiration from the century old pre-prohibition style building, making certain every detail is on brand for Bosscat’s rustic industrial aesthetic but also throwing back to the auto repair shop and the beloved neighborhood liquor store that had decades of commerce and stories before it.”

“Bosscat Kitchen & Libations creatively meshes upscale and casual dining with an expansive whiskey selection and unique menu of American comfort food. The high energy, open-spaced concept promotes a lively experience at all locations: Newport Beach, CA and Houston, TX (with the third location newly opened in Orange, CA on March 17th). Their brick, metal, dark wood and whiskey barrel decor suits its comfort menu.”

“One of the restaurant’s most coveted attractions is the famous whiskey room that houses hundreds of whiskies from several countries (including: Scotland, Ireland, Japan, Canada and the US). Bosscat Kitchen’s Executive Chef, Peter Petro, cultivates new ideas with seasonal produce, meats and spices.”

Bosscat Kitchens’ Leslie Nguyen and John Reed join us.

Donato Poto of Providence plus Connie and Ted's

For 16 years, Providence in Hollywood has elevated the standard of modern American seafood restaurants with exemplary service. Newly reopened for dine-in guests can again experience Chef Michael Cimarusti’s award-winning cuisine in the heart of Los Angeles, welcomed by one of L.A.’s legendary hosts, co-owner Donato Poto.

“Chef Cimarusti is completely dedicated to procuring the finest sustainable seafood—from regional coasts and international waters—and treats those ingredients with uncompromising respect and sophisticated technique. “First and foremost, what guides us here is sustainability,” Cimarusti says. “We use only wild-caught, sustainable products, mostly from American waters, and look to highlight their finest qualities.””

Providence is newly reopened for Dinner only, serving Tuesday through Saturday. Providence offers a single, extravagant multi-course tasting menu nightly. (Vegetarian and Pescatarian options are available.)

Restaurateur Donato Poto is with us to reminisce, celebrate the 16th Anniversary and look to the future.

Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is continually updating us on the real impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants during the initial, highly fluid stages of the hoped-for recovery.

Now that guests are finally able to return to full-service restaurants in greater numbers maintaining civility between guests and staff is important. How far should it escalate with a problem guest before Management lets a customer know that their over-the-top, bad behavior simply won’t be tolerated? We’ll ask Chef Andrew.

Keep in mind the juicy and delicious Community Burger (more than a mouthful) is available at all Southern California locations of Slapfish. The worthy burger is free with any donation to 86 Restaurant Struggle.” 100 per cent of that money goes to benefit struggling restaurant workers.

Show 428, June 5, 2021: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

We’re previewing the show with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris.

Last week we spoke with Executive Chef Kenneth Williams who oversees the diverse dining options at Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage. We’re now picking up the appetizing conversation with Chef Ken’s Executive Sous Chef, Patrick Contreras. We’re concentrating on the casual, full-service Waters Café serving Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Happy Hour, and The District (fast casual service,) offering an array of tasty regional cuisines from Mexican (La Olla Mexican Cuisine) to a selection of Asian (Jade Asian Cuisine) and delicatessen foods (ACE Deli.)

Brothers Stuart and Charles Smith are the vineyard managers and winemakers of Smith-Madrone Winery located on Spring Mountain in the Napa Valley. Smith-Madrone celebrated their 50th Anniversary on May 14th. They are known for outstanding Riesling, Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon. The name for the winery came as a tribute to the Smith brothers who pursued their dream and to the Madrone trees which distinguish the property.” Founder Stuart Smith joins us with a glass of Smith-Madrone 2017 Riesling in hand.

FARM is a traditional Provencial-style restaurant in downtown Palm Springs in the historic La Plaza, tucked away from traffic. The culinary team has taken care to create a menu comprised of traditional European dishes, brimming with locally sourced produce and artisanal meats. In true Provencial-style, the bi-weekly changing prix fixe dinner menu (available Friday through Tuesday) is served at a relaxed pace so you may enjoy your evening at Farm. It’s three courses (with selections in each course) plus an Amuse Bouche and a refreshing Palate Cleanser presented before the Entree. Reservations are needed for Dinner. Breakfast and Lunch with an a la carte menu is walk-in. Proprietress Liz Ostoich is our guest.

Puesto Mexican Artisan Kitchen & Bar launched its third Orange County location in late April at Huntington Beach’s Bella Terra Center. As the largest of the O.C. locations at 7,600 square feet, Puesto Bella Terra reflects the coastal community that it has joined by adopting elements of Huntington Beach culture in its design, with organic forms, raw materials, and earth tones of the Puesto color wheel.” “Puesto is known for its tacos made from handmade, non-GMO, organic blue corn stone-ground tortillas, organic jidori chicken, sustainable meats, Baja and local line caught seafood, local produce and scratch salsas. Guests are encouraged to mix and match from an array of tacos.”

Co-Founder Alex Adler joins us.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is continually updating us on the real impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants during the initial, highly fluid stages of the hoped-for recovery which remains a genuine concern. Chef Andrew is on his way home from Texas from his annual Texas BBQ tasting road tour. What distinguishes BBQ in the Lone Star State? It’s all about the dry rubs. Chef Andrew points us in the right direction.

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness (with proper Social Distancing) on this week’s not-to-miss show!

Play

Show 428, June 5, 2021: Executive Sous Chef Patrick Contreras, Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage

Patrick Contreras at 360 Sports inside of Agua Caliente Rancho Mirage

Last week we spoke with Executive Chef Kenneth Williams who oversees the diverse dining options at Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage. We’re picking up the conversation with Chef Ken’s Executive Sous Chef, Patrick Contreras.

Now we’re concentrating on the casual, full-service Waters Café serving Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Happy Hour, and The District (fast casual service,) offering an array of regional cuisines from Mexican (La Olla Mexican Cuisine) to a selection of Asian (Jade Asian Cuisine) and delicatessen foods (ACE Deli.) ACE Deli is open 23 hours per day. Waters Café also handles Room Service for the 340-room Resort Hotel.

Executive Sous Chef Patrick Contreras joins us with tongs securely in hand.

Play

Show 428, June 5, 2021: Stuart Smith, Founder, Smith-Madrone Vineyards & Winery, Spring Mountain, Napa Valley

Stuart Smith of Smith Madrone Winery

Brothers Stuart and Charles Smith are the vineyard managers and winemakers of Smith-Madrone Winery located on Spring Mountain in the Napa Valley. Smith-Madrone celebrated their 50th Anniversary on May 14th. The name for the winery came as a tribute to the Smith brothers who pursued their dream and to the Madrone trees which distinguish the property.”

“In May 1971, with a partnership of family and friends, Stuart Smith bought the ‘terroir’ which today is Smith-Madrone Vineyards & Winery. He was 22 years old and had just received his B.A. in Economics from UC Berkeley and was taking classes towards his Master’s in Viticulture at UC Davis. In trying to find land to plant vineyard in the Napa Valley, through a family friend he explored a forest on the remotest and highest part of Spring Mountain and discovered that the land had been a vineyard in the 1880s and in fact had been part of the wagon trail route between Napa and Santa Rosa.”

Charles Smith (Stuart’s brother) joined the Winery in 1972 as Winemaker. Stuart’s son, Sam, became part of the leadership team in 2010 as Assistant Winemaker.

“Smith-Madrone’s current releases are the 2017 Chardonnay, 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon, 2017 Riesling, 2016 Cook’s Flat Reserve and in very limited availability, magnums of Cabernet Sauvignon and Cook’s Flat Reserve.”

“As part of Smith-Madrone’s anniversary festivities they are inaugurating on Saturday, June 19th a regular series of informative and entertaining Zoom tastings and discussions with the winemakers. Stuart, his brother, Winemaker Charles Smith, and Stuart’s son, Sam, the Assistant Winemaker, will open older vintages and taste and discuss them with the Zoom attendees.” Sign-up via the Smith-Madrone website.

Founder Stuart Smith is our guest to gently pull the cork on Smith-Madrone for us.

Play

Show 428, June 5, 2021: Liz Ostoich, Owner, Farm, La Plaza, Palm Springs Part One

Liz Ostoich of Farm and Tac/Quila in Palm Springs

FARM (reconceived in 2016 under new ownership) is a traditional Provencial-style restaurant in downtown Palm Springs in the historic Plaza, tucked away from traffic. The culinary team has taken care to create a menu comprised of traditional European dishes, brimming with locally sourced produce and artisanal meats. In true Provencial-style, the weekly changing prix fixe dinner menu (available Friday through Tuesday) is served at a relaxed pace so you may enjoy your evening at Farm.” It’s three courses (with selections in each course) plus an Amuse Bouche and a refreshing Palate Cleanser presented before the Entree. Reservations are needed for Dinner.

Breakfast and Lunch with an a la care menu are offered daily on a walk-in basis. Think an extensive selection of Sweet & Savory Crepes, Omelettes, Brioche French Toast, Greenery and Sandwiches.

“The experience at Farm is like being transported to the South of France. When you come and dine with us, you can expect an extraordinary sensory experience; from our garden-like patio seating, our beautiful bouquet of floral landscaping, to our incredible authentic menu comprised of the freshest ingredients, you will be wowed at every turn.”

“Enjoy a meal on our patio and take in the ambiance of being out of the city. We prepare all our items as you order. No freezers, no microwave, and our kitchen staff works hard to prepare each dish with the utmost care!”

Owner Liz Ostoich typically journeys to France twice a year for menu inspiration.

Owner Liz Ostoich joins us.

Play

Show 428, June 5, 2021: Liz Ostoich, Owner, Farm, La Plaza, Palm Springs Part Two

Liz Ostoich of Farm and Tac/Quila in Palm Springs

FARM (reconceived in 2016 under new ownership) is a traditional Provencial-style restaurant in downtown Palm Springs in the historic Plaza, tucked away from traffic. The culinary team has taken care to create a menu comprised of traditional European dishes, brimming with locally sourced produce and artisanal meats. In true Provencial-style, the weekly changing prix fixe dinner menu (available Friday through Tuesday) is served at a relaxed pace so you may enjoy your evening at Farm.” It’s three courses (with selections in each course) plus an Amuse Bouche and a refreshing Palate Cleanser presented before the Entree. Reservations are needed for Dinner.

Breakfast and Lunch with an a la care menu are offered daily on a walk-in basis. Think an extensive selection of Sweet & Savory Crepes, Omelettes, Brioche French Toast, Greenery and Sandwiches.

“The experience at Farm is like being transported to the South of France. When you come and dine with us, you can expect an extraordinary sensory experience; from our garden-like patio seating, our beautiful bouquet of floral landscaping, to our incredible authentic menu comprised of the freshest ingredients, you will be wowed at every turn.”

“Enjoy a meal on our patio and take in the ambiance of being out of the city. We prepare all our items as you order. No freezers, no microwave, and our kitchen staff works hard to prepare each dish with the utmost care!”

Owner Liz Ostoich typically journeys to France twice a year for menu inspiration.

Liz also owns (with her husband Mark) the nearby Tac/Quila. It’s their take on elevated Jalisco style cuisine with specialty tequilas and mezcals.

Owner Liz Ostoich continues with us.

Play

Show 428, June 5, 2021: Alex Adler, Co-Founder, Puesto Mexican Artisan Kitchen & Bar Part One

Alex Adler of Puesto

Puesto Mexican Artisan Kitchen & Bar launched its third Orange County location in late April at Huntington Beach’s Bella Terra Center. As the largest of the O.C. locations at 7,600 square feet, Puesto Bella Terra reflects the coastal community that it has joined by adopting elements of Huntington Beach culture in its design, with organic forms, raw materials, and earth tones of the Puesto color wheel.”

“Despite being a very challenging year for restaurants, in general, we’ve been overwhelmed by the support that the Orange County community has shown Puesto – so much so, that is has only gotten us more energized and excited to bring the community this beautiful location in the Bella Terra Center,” says Eric Adler, Tacoteur and Co-Founder of Puesto. “This will be our largest location, with extensive indoor and open-air seating and many unique features that provide a one of a kind experience for guests to enjoy.”

“Puesto is known for its tacos made from handmade, non-GMO, organic blue corn stone-ground tortillas, organic jidori chicken, sustainable meats, Baja and local line caught seafood, local produce and scratch salsas. Guests are encouraged to mix and match from an array of tacos, including Filet Mignon (crispy melted cheese, avocado, spicy pistachio serrano salsa), Chicken al Pastor (crispy melted cheese, braised Jidori chicken, hibiscus & chipotle tinga, avocado, piña habanero pico), vegetarian options such as Verduras (crispy melted cheese, rajas, tatume squash, papas, corn& tomato, nopales, avocado, jalapeño, zucchini blossom) and Mushroom (crispy melted cheese, garlic braised seasonal mushrooms, pickled onions, stone fruit serrano salsa, hearts on fire). In addition to tacos, fresh ceviches and enchiladas highlight the menu.”

“Puesto is family-owned and operated by brothers Eric, Alan and Alex Adler, their cousins Isidoro and Moy Lombrozo alongside Executive Chef Luisteen Gonzalez, a Mexico City native who accredits his passion for food to his grandmother and his fisherman father. The owners, first generation Mexican Americans, have been immersed in authentic, Mexican cooking since birth. While traveling around the United States, they became captivated by the local cuisine in each city, and how it reflected its people and culture. The family was inspired to bring their Mexican roots to the SoCal area, thus Puesto is a combination of authentic Mexican flavors and Southern California’s fresh, local ingredients.”

Puesto is also known for their extensive beverage program. A deep selection of Tequilas and Mezcals are available and they even brew their own Cervezas in their Mission Valley Cerveceria. All of their wines are unusually hand-selected from Mexico’s celebrated Baja California wine region. Nine variations of signature Margaritas are on the Puesto menu including the Cucumber Margarita.

Filet Mignon Taco (blue corn tortilla shell) in hand we’re joined by Puesto’s Alex Adler.

Play

Show 428, June 5, 2021: Alex Adler, Co-Founder, Puesto Mexican Artisan Kitchen & Bar Part Two

Alex Adler of Puesto

Puesto Mexican Artisan Kitchen & Bar launched its third Orange County location in late April at Huntington Beach’s Bella Terra Center. As the largest of the O.C. locations at 7,600 square feet, Puesto Bella Terra reflects the coastal community that it has joined by adopting elements of Huntington Beach culture in its design, with organic forms, raw materials, and earth tones of the Puesto color wheel.”

“Despite being a very challenging year for restaurants, in general, we’ve been overwhelmed by the support that the Orange County community has shown Puesto – so much so, that is has only gotten us more energized and excited to bring the community this beautiful location in the Bella Terra Center,” says Eric Adler, Tacoteur and Co-Founder of Puesto. “This will be our largest location, with extensive indoor and open-air seating and many unique features that provide a one of a kind experience for guests to enjoy.”

“Puesto is known for its tacos made from handmade, non-GMO, organic blue corn stone-ground tortillas, organic jidori chicken, sustainable meats, Baja and local line caught seafood, local produce and scratch salsas. Guests are encouraged to mix and match from an array of tacos, including Filet Mignon (crispy melted cheese, avocado, spicy pistachio serrano salsa), Chicken al Pastor (crispy melted cheese, braised Jidori chicken, hibiscus & chipotle tinga, avocado, piña habanero pico), vegetarian options such as Verduras (crispy melted cheese, rajas, tatume squash, papas, corn& tomato, nopales, avocado, jalapeño, zucchini blossom) and Mushroom (crispy melted cheese, garlic braised seasonal mushrooms, pickled onions, stone fruit serrano salsa, hearts on fire). In addition to tacos, fresh ceviches and enchiladas highlight the menu.”

“Puesto is family-owned and operated by brothers Eric, Alan and Alex Adler, their cousins Isidoro and Moy Lombrozo alongside Executive Chef Luisteen Gonzalez, a Mexico City native who accredits his passion for food to his grandmother and his fisherman father. The owners, first generation Mexican Americans, have been immersed in authentic, Mexican cooking since birth. While traveling around the United States, they became captivated by the local cuisine in each city, and how it reflected its people and culture. The family was inspired to bring their Mexican roots to the SoCal area, thus Puesto is a combination of authentic Mexican flavors and Southern California’s fresh, local ingredients.”

Puesto is also known for their extensive beverage program. A deep selection of Tequilas and Mezcals are available and they even brew their own Cervezas in their Mission Valley Cerveceria. All of their wines are unusually hand-selected from Mexico’s celebrated Baja California wine region. Nine variations of signature Margaritas are on the Puesto menu including the Cucumber Margarita.

With tacos (blue corn tortilla shells) in hand Puesto’s Alex Adler continues with us.

Play

Show 428, June 5, 2021: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”

Andy Harris and Andrew Gruel at Cabana 14 at the Cove at Pechanga Resort and Casino

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is continually updating us on the real impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants during the initial, highly fluid stages of the hoped-for recovery.

Chef Andrew is on his way back from Texas from his annual Texas BBQ tasting road tour. What distinguishes BBQ in the Lone Star State? Dry rubs are definitely a part of the equation. Chef Andrew points us in the right direction. Cooper’s Old Time Pit Bar-B-Que (Home of The Big Chop) with multiple Texas locations including the Texas Hill Country is a personal favorite. We’re picking this up from last week when we, unfortunately, lost Chef Andrew on his cell phone.

Keep in mind the juicy and delicious Community Burger (more than a mouthful) is available at all Southern California locations of Slapfish. The worthy burger is free with any donation to 86 Restaurant Struggle.” 100 per cent of that money goes to benefit struggling restaurant workers.

Play

June 5: Aqua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage, Smith-Madrone Winery, Farm Palm Springs, Puesto Mexican Artisan Kitchen & Bar

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Executive Sous Chef Patrick Contreras, Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage
Segment Three: Stuart Smith, Founder, Smith-Madrone Vineyards & Winery, Spring Mountain, Napa Valley
Segment Four: Liz Ostoich, Owner, Farm, La Plaza, Palm Springs Part One
Segment Five: Liz Ostoich, Owner, Farm, La Plaza, Palm Springs Part Two
Segment Six: Alex Adler, Co-Founder, Puesto Mexican Artisan Kitchen & Bar Part One
Segment Seven: Alex Adler, Co-Founder, Puesto Mexican Artisan Kitchen & Bar Part Two
Segment Eight: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”

We’re previewing the show with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris.

Last week we spoke with Executive Chef Kenneth Williams who oversees the diverse dining options at Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage. We’re now picking up the appetizing conversation with Chef Ken’s Executive Sous Chef, Patrick Contreras. We’re concentrating on the casual, full-service Waters Café serving Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Happy Hour, and The District (fast casual service,) offering an array of tasty regional cuisines from Mexican (La Olla Mexican Cuisine) to a selection of Asian (Jade Asian Cuisine) and delicatessen foods (ACE Deli.)

Brothers Stuart and Charles Smith are the vineyard managers and winemakers of Smith-Madrone Winery located on Spring Mountain in the Napa Valley. Smith-Madrone celebrated their 50th Anniversary on May 14th. They are known for outstanding Riesling, Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon. The name for the winery came as a tribute to the Smith brothers who pursued their dream and to the Madrone trees which distinguish the property.” Founder Stuart Smith joins us with a glass of Smith-Madrone 2017 Riesling in hand.

FARM is a traditional Provencial-style restaurant in downtown Palm Springs in the historic Plaza, tucked away from traffic. The culinary team has taken care to create a menu comprised of traditional European dishes, brimming with locally sourced produce and artisanal meats. In true Provencial-style, the weekly changing prix fixe dinner menu (available Friday through Tuesday) is served at a relaxed pace so you may enjoy your evening at Farm. It’s three courses (with selections in each course) plus an Amuse Bouche and a refreshing Palate Cleanser presented before the Entree. Reservations are needed for Dinner. Breakfast and Lunch with an a la carte menu is walk-in. Proprietress Liz Ostoich is our guest.

“Puesto Mexican Artisan Kitchen & Bar launched its third Orange County location in late April at Huntington Beach’s Bella Terra Center. As the largest of the O.C. locations at 7,600 square feet, Puesto Bella Terra reflects the coastal community that it has joined by adopting elements of Huntington Beach culture in its design, with organic forms, raw materials, and earth tones of the Puesto color wheel.”

“Puesto is known for its tacos made from handmade, non-GMO, organic blue corn stone-ground tortillas, organic jidori chicken, sustainable meats, Baja and local line caught seafood, local produce and scratch salsas. Guests are encouraged to mix and match from an array of tacos.”

Co-Founder Alex Adler join us.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is continually updating us on the real impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants during the initial, highly fluid stages of the hoped-for recovery which remains a genuine concern. Chef Andrew just returned from Texas on his annual Texas BBQ tasting road tour. What distinguishes BBQ in the Lone Star State? Chef Andrew points us in the right direction.

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness (with proper Social Distancing) on this week’s not-to-miss show!

Patrick Contreras at 360 Sports inside of Agua Caliente Rancho Mirage

Last week we spoke with Executive Chef Kenneth Williams who oversees the diverse dining options at Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage. We’re picking up the conversation with Chef Ken’s Executive Sous Chef, Patrick Contreras. Now we’re concentrating on the casual, full-service Waters Café serving Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Happy Hour, and The District (fast casual service,) offering an array of regional cuisines from Mexican (La Olla Mexican Cuisine) to a selection of Asian (Jade Asian Cuisine) and delicatessen foods (ACE Deli.)

Stuart Smith of Smith Madrone Winery

Brothers Stuart and Charles Smith are the vineyard managers and winemakers of Smith-Madrone Winery located on Spring Mountain in the Napa Valley. Smith-Madrone celebrated their 50th Anniversary on May 14th. The name for the winery came as a tribute to the Smith brothers who pursued their dream and to the Madrone trees which distinguish the property.”

“In May 1971, with a partnership of family and friends, Stuart Smith bought the ‘terroir’ which today is Smith-Madrone Vineyards & Winery. He was 22 years old and had just received his B.A. in Economics from UC Berkeley and was taking classes towards his Master’s in Viticulture at UC Davis. In trying to find land to plant vineyard in the Napa Valley, through a family friend he explored a forest on the remotest and highest part of Spring Mountain and discovered that the land had been a vineyard in the 1880s and in fact had been part of the wagon trail route between Napa and Santa Rosa.”

“Smith-Madrone’s current releases are the 2017 Chardonnay, 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon, 2017 Riesling, 2016 Cook’s Flat Reserve and in very limited availability, magnums of Cabernet Sauvignon and Cook’s Flat Reserve.”

Founder Stuart Smith is our guest to gently pull the cork on Smith-Madrone for us.

Liz Ostoich of Farm and Tac/Quila in Palm Springs

FARM (reconceived in 2016 under new ownership) is a traditional Provencial-style restaurant in downtown Palm Springs in the historic Plaza, tucked away from traffic. The culinary team has taken care to create a menu comprised of traditional European dishes, brimming with locally sourced produce and artisanal meats. In true Provencial-style, the weekly changing prix fixe dinner menu (available Friday through Tuesday) is served at a relaxed pace so you may enjoy your evening at Farm.” It’s three courses (with selections in each course) plus an Amuse Bouche and a refreshing Palate Cleanser presented before the Entree. Reservations are needed for Dinner.

Breakfast and Lunch with an a la care menu are offered daily on a walk-in basis. Think an extensive selection of Sweet & Savory Crepes, Omelettes, Brioche French Toast, Greenery and Sandwiches.

“The experience at Farm is like being transported to the South of France. When you come and dine with us, you can expect an extraordinary sensory experience; from our garden-like patio seating, our beautiful bouquet of floral landscaping, to our incredible authentic menu comprised of the freshest ingredients, you will be wowed at every turn.”

“Enjoy a meal on our patio and take in the ambiance of being out of the city. We prepare all our items as you order. No freezers, no microwave, and our kitchen staff works hard to prepare each dish with the utmost care!”

Owner Liz Ostoich joins us.

Alex Adler of Puesto

Puesto Mexican Artisan Kitchen & Bar launched its third Orange County location in late April at Huntington Beach’s Bella Terra Center. As the largest of the O.C. locations at 7,600 square feet, Puesto Bella Terra reflects the coastal community that it has joined by adopting elements of Huntington Beach culture in its design, with organic forms, raw materials, and earth tones of the Puesto color wheel.”

“Despite being a very challenging year for restaurants, in general, we’ve been overwhelmed by the support that the Orange County community has shown Puesto – so much so, that is has only gotten us more energized and excited to bring the community this beautiful location in the Bella Terra Center,” says Eric Adler, Tacoteur and Co-Founder of Puesto. “This will be our largest location, with extensive indoor and open-air seating and many unique features that provide a one of a kind experience for guests to enjoy.”

“Puesto is known for its tacos made from handmade, non-GMO, organic blue corn stone-ground tortillas, organic jidori chicken, sustainable meats, Baja and local line caught seafood, local produce and scratch salsas. Guests are encouraged to mix and match from an array of tacos, including Filet Mignon (crispy melted cheese, avocado, spicy pistachio serrano salsa), Chicken al Pastor (crispy melted cheese, braised Jidori chicken, hibiscus & chipotle tinga, avocado, piña habanero pico), vegetarian options such as Verduras (crispy melted cheese, rajas, tatume squash, papas, corn& tomato, nopales, avocado, jalapeño, zucchini blossom) and Mushroom (crispy melted cheese, garlic braised seasonal mushrooms, pickled onions, stone fruit serrano salsa, hearts on fire). In addition to tacos, fresh ceviches and enchiladas highlight the menu.”

“Puesto is family-owned and operated by brothers Eric, Alan and Alex Adler, their cousins Isidoro and Moy Lombrozo alongside Executive Chef Luisteen Gonzalez, a Mexico City native who accredits his passion for food to his grandmother and his fisherman father. The owners, first generation Mexican Americans, have been immersed in authentic, Mexican cooking since birth. While traveling around the United States, they became captivated by the local cuisine in each city, and how it reflected its people and culture. The family was inspired to bring their Mexican roots to the SoCal area, thus Puesto is a combination of authentic Mexican flavors and Southern California’s fresh, local ingredients.”

Tacos (blue corn tortilla shells) in hand we’re joined by Puesto’s Alex Adler.

Andy Harris and Andrew Gruel at Cabana 14 at the Cove at Pechanga Resort and Casino

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is continually updating us on the real impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants during the initial, highly fluid stages of the hoped-for recovery.

Chef Andrew just returned from Texas on his annual Texas BBQ tasting road tour. What distinguishes BBQ in the Lone Star State? Chef Andrew points us in the right direction. We’re picking this up from last week when we, unfortunately, lost Chef Andrew on his cell phone.

Keep in mind the juicy and delicious Community Burger (more than a mouthful) is available at all Southern California locations of Slapfish. The worthy burger is free with any donation to 86 Restaurant Struggle.” 100 per cent of that money goes to benefit struggling restaurant workers.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Executive Sous Chef Patrick Contreras, Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage
Segment Three: Stuart Smith, Founder, Smith-Madrone Vineyards & Winery, Spring Mountain, Napa Valley
Segment Four: Liz Ostoich, Owner, Farm, La Plaza, Palm Springs Part One
Segment Five: Liz Ostoich, Owner, Farm, La Plaza, Palm Springs Part Two
Segment Six: Alex Adler, Co-Founder, Puesto Mexican Artisan Kitchen & Bar Part One
Segment Seven: Alex Adler, Co-Founder, Puesto Mexican Artisan Kitchen & Bar Part Two
Segment Eight: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”