July 4: Pierre A. Lamielle, Susan Feniger, George Geary, Burger Week with Faith & Flower

Happy 4th of July to all. Please do celebrate safely.

“Fun illustrations and delightfully quirky characters bring the kitchen to life in The Munchy Munchy Cookbook for Kids. Join Chef Pierre A. Lamielle on a kitchen adventure as he introduces you to the Munchy Munchy Gang, a team of characters here to educate kids on the art of cooking and the range of flavors they’ll encounter. Learn how to make over 28 different recipes, including ketchup, pancakes and other kid favorites with simple, easy-to-follow instructions and illustrations for every step. Pierre’s characters make complex cooking theories, like balancing the five tastes, accessible to kids of all ages. The perfect manual for a budding chef.” Chef Pierre Lamielle is our guest.

Celebrity chef and restaurateur Susan Feniger is best known for creating Border Grill (Los Angeles & Las Vegas) with her business partner Mary Sue Milliken. She was also one of the first stars on Food Network. The partners have made their return to Santa Monica with the launch of Socalo in the Gateway Hotel which has just reopened for expanded patio dining and curbside pickup.

“In his best-selling cookbook, Fair Foods: The Most Popular and Offbeat Recipes from America’s State and County Fairs, award-winning chef, best-selling author, and renowned educator George Geary celebrates the fun, delicious, strange and wonderful foods sold at state and county fairs.  Since we can’t go to the fair this year, George brings the fair to us with a volume of the most popular and iconic fair food recipes. Think Funnel Cake with Berries and Deep-Fried Twinkies.” Chef George Geary is with us, Cheesecake on a Stick in hand.

“Coming together for the very first time to celebrate restaurants all throughout Southern California, Los Angeles and Orange County unite to introduce Burger Week, which will be held from Sunday, July 12th, 2020 through Sunday, July 18th, 2020. Burger Week, produced by the Orange County Restaurant Association, will be a first-time event in Los Angeles and second annual event in Orange County. Burger Week was created to encourage diners all throughout the Southland (Orange County, Los Angeles County, Long Beach, and Pasadena) to celebrate and support SoCal restaurants while enjoying America’s favorite food – the almighty Burger!” Chef Michael Hung of Faith & Flower in Downtown Los Angeles is one of the participating chefs and restaurants in Burger Week. He’s offering three special burger creation meals including a plant-based Cheeseburger option. Chef Michael Hung temps us with all the juicy burger deliciousness.

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 regularly updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-In is slowly, with multiple hiccups, starting to come back but with a lot of new rules that restrict guest counts. Alternately Take-Out / Delivery when you can surely helps… Chef Andrew launched a new Slapfish in downtown Indianapolis this week. What’s it like opening a restaurant during the Covid 19 crisis ? We’ll, of course, “Ask the Chef.”

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

“From a young age, kids can have strong opinions about which foods they enjoy and which foods they definitely do not want to see on their plate! The Munchy Munchy Cookbook for Kids by “Chopped Canada” winner Chef Pierre Lamielle takes knowledge from a practiced chef, and adds the quirky characters of the Munchy Munchy Gang into the mix!”

“The Munchy Munchy Gang teach budding foodies and chefs about skills and flavor profiles through 28 different recipes and a myriad of fun illustrations. Readers will learn how to make favorites including ketchup, pancakes, and more, with simple instructions and illustrations (drawn by Chef Lamielle) for every step.”

“Pierre’s characters make complex cooking theories, like balancing the five tastes, accessible to kids of all ages!”

“Fun illustrations and delightfully quirky characters bring the kitchen to life in The Munchy Munchy Cookbook for Kids. Join Chef Pierre A. Lamielle on a kitchen adventure as he introduces you to the Munchy Munchy Gang, a team of characters here to educate kids on the art of cooking and the range of flavors they’ll encounter. Learn how to make over 28 different recipes, including ketchup, pancakes and other kid favorites with simple, easy-to-follow instructions and illustrations for every step. Pierre’s characters make complex cooking theories, like balancing the five tastes, accessible to kids of all ages. The perfect manual for a budding chef”

Chef Pierre A. Lamielle is the award- winning cookbook author of Alice Eats: A Wonderland Cookbook and Kitchen Scraps: A Humorous Illustrated Cookbook. Both won “Best Illustrated Cookbook in the World” at the Gourmand Cookbook Awards. He loves to teach cooking to all ages. He prefers cooking with friends but is not afraid of a little friendly culinary competition. He even competed on “Top Chef Canada” and “Chopped Canada”, which he won.

Chef Pierre is very excited for you to meet the amazing cast of characters in The Munchy Munchy Cookbook for Kids and to learn all about cooking and eating tasty food.

We entice Chef Pierre Lamielle out of the kitchen for a chat.

Susan Feniger wearing a mask at Socalo in Santa MonicaCelebrity chef and restaurateur Susan Feniger is best known for creating Border Grill (Los Angeles & Las Vegas) with her business partner Mary Sue Milliken. She was also one of the first stars on Food Network. The partners have made their return to Santa Monica with the launch of Socalo in the Gateway Hotel which has just reopened for expanded patio dining.

Curbside pickup is available, too. A range of Family Meals are available by Tock. Also Margarita Kits, Wines by the Bottle, and Craft Beers.

Complimentary on-site parking is available.

Chicken Poblano Enchiladas (a favorite from Border Grill) have been added to the menu. Also returning to dinner dine-in is Baja Seabass and Lamb Birria.

Curbside pickup is available, too. A range of Family Meals are available by Tock. Also Margarita Kits, Wines by the Bottle, and Craft Beers.

Complimentary on-site parking is available.

We corral Chef Susan for a chat on what’s currently available at Socalo Santa Monica.

Cookbook Author George GearyWith fair season unfortunately cancelled this year, accomplished chef and author, George Geary lets you enjoy the food of county fairs without leaving your house.

The summer season is a time for ice cream, summer camp and state and county fairs.  But this summer is different with fairs postponed until 2021 due to COVID 19.  But that doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy the fun foods we love to eat served up at the fair.

In his best-selling cookbook, Fair Foods: The Most Popular and Offbeat Recipes from America’s State and County Fairs, award-winning chef, best-selling author, and renowned educator George Geary celebrates the fun, delicious, strange and wonderful foods sold at state and county fairs.  Since we can’t go to the fair this year, George brings the fair to us with a volume of the most popular and iconic fair food recipes. Think Funnel Cake with Berries and Deep-Fried Twinkies.

Chef George Geary is with us, Cheesecake on a Stick in hand.

Michael Hung of Faith and Flower“Coming together for the very first time to celebrate restaurants all throughout Southern California, Los Angeles and Orange County unite to introduce Burger Week, which will be held from Sunday, July 12th, 2020 through Sunday, July 18th, 2020. Burger Week, produced by the Orange County Restaurant Association, will be a first-time event in Los Angeles and second annual event in Orange County. Burger Week was created to encourage diners all throughout the Southland (Orange County, Los Angeles County, Long Beach, and Pasadena) to celebrate and support SoCal restaurants while enjoying America’s favorite food – the almighty Burger!”

“Burger Week will feature burger creations from participating restaurants all across Southern California and during this week-long event running from Sunday, July 12th through Sunday, July 18th, 2020, diners will be able to explore a variety of Burgers, ranging from classic to creative, featuring proteins including beef, chicken, turkey, mushroom, and plant-based options, on menus priced at $10, $15, $20, and luxe menus at $25. Many restaurants will also be featuring special outdoor Dine-in, Takeout and Delivery packages, along with specialty featured Cocktails made with Maker’s Mark or Knob Creek Bourbon Whiskey. The restaurants participating in Burger Week, their Menus, and their featured Cocktails are all highlighted at BurgerWeek.com.”

Chef Michael Hung of Faith & Flower in Downtown Los Angeles is one of the participating chefs and restaurants in Burger Week. He’s offering three special burger creation meals including a plant-based Cheeseburger option. Chef Michael Hung temps us with all the juicy burger deliciousness.

Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant GroupOur 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 regularly updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is slowly starting to come back but with a lot of new rules that restrict guest counts. Alternately Take-Out / Delivery when you can surely helps…

Chef Andrew launched a new Slapfish in downtown Indianapolis this week. What’s it like opening a restaurant during the Covid 19 crisis ? We’ll, of course, “Ask the Chef.”

June 27: Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy, The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar, Piero Selvaggio, Margerum Wine Company, Kapoor’s Akbar

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: “Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy” with Producer & Director Elizabeth Carroll
Segment Three: The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar with Founding Partner & Wine Director William Lewis
Segment Four: Restaurateur Piero Selvaggio, Drago Centro and Louie’s by the Bay Part One
Segment Five: Restaurateur Piero Selvaggio, Drago Centro and Louie’s by the Bay Part Two
Segment Six: Doug Margerum, Margerum Wine Company, Santa Barbara
Segment Seven: Chef Avinash Kapoor, Kapoor’s Akbar, Downtown Los Angeles
Segment Eight: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”

“Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy (documentary feature film) is an intimate, candid perspective into the curious world of cookbook author and British ex-pat Diana Kennedy – widely regarded as the world’s expert on Mexican cuisine. At five feet tall and 97 years old, Diana is larger than life: a foul-mouthed fireball far more feisty and energetic than her age and petite frame let on. Author of nine Mexican cookbooks, she has spent over 60 years researching and documenting the regional cuisines of Mexico.” Filmmaker Elizabeth Carroll is our guide to the career of Diana Kennedy.

The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar matches contemporary California regional cuisine, with a hip, vibrant, sophisticated setting, to create a cutting-edge dining experience. Located at The District in Tustin, overlooking the Marina in Newport Beach, and at Westfield UTC in La Jolla, The Winery culinary team is led by Executive Chef & Partner Yvon Goetz. The other Founding Partners are JC Clow and Wine Director William Lewis. William Lewis uncorks it all for us.

Legendary Los Angeles Restaurateur and ever-gracious host Piero Selvaggio attentively presided over the iconic Valentino in Santa Monica for over 46 years. Valentino was a landmark establishment defining regional Italian fine dining with polished service in the West combined with a deep and well-maintained wine cellar. Piero’s most recent undertaking was the debut of Louie’s by the Bay (modern Italian steakhouse) in Newport Beach with Restaurateur Ron Salisbury. His current effort is with Chef Celestino Drago is the just relaunched, elegant Drago Centro in Downtown Los Angeles. We’ll hear all about it with Piero Selvaggio.

Leading the Margerum Wine Company team (with a handsome new tasting room at Hotel Californian in the State Building) is creator and namesake, Douglas Barden Margerum, a long-term Santa Barbara resident who has been a fixture in the Santa Barbara food and wine scene for over 35 years. Doug is also is a member of the (rescheduled for 2021) Santa Barbara Culinary Experience (SBCE) Advisory Committee. Doug is our guest to pull the cork for us on the reopening of Margerum Wine Company.

“Under the supervision of prominent executive chef Avi Kapoor, the latest incarnation of the Akbar restaurant family, Kapoor’s Akbar, offers diners an innovative Indian food experience on the edge of Downtown LA. Relying on traditional recipes passed down through the family but updated with non-traditional techniques and ingredients, Kapoor’s Akbar serves freshly prepared dishes that are rich in taste, temptingly presented and always memorable.” We gently pull Chef Avi away from the tandoor oven for a long overdue visit.

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 regularly updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is slowly starting to come back but with a lot of new rules that restrict guest counts. Alternately Take-Out / Delivery when you can surely helps… Covid 19 has impacted the food system across the United States. Oddly there are spot shortages of foodstuffs in some areas and surpluses in others. We’ll, of course, “Ask the Chef.”

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

Filmmaker Elizabeth CarrollDiana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy (documentary feature film) is an intimate, candid perspective into the curious world of cookbook author and British ex-pat Diana Kennedy – widely regarded as the world’s expert on Mexican cuisine. At five feet tall and 97 years old, Diana is larger than life: a foul-mouthed fireball far more feisty and energetic than her age and petite frame let on. Author of nine Mexican cookbooks, she has spent over 60 years researching and documenting the regional cuisines of Mexico.

“Kennedy has lived ‘off-the-grid’ on an eight-acre ranch outside Zitácuaro, Michoacán since the 1970’s: composting, growing her own crops, and using solar power to run her home. Aware of her own mortality, she is working tirelessly to solidify the legacy of her life’s efforts, with the hope of turning her home into a foundation for culinary education in Mexico.”

“A two-time James Beard Award winner, Diana was decorated with an Order of the Aztec Eagle from the Mexican government and became a Member of the Order of the British Empire from the UK in 2002. Despite her notable achievements, Diana is difficult to categorize. Often referred to as the “Julia Child of Mexico,” but Diana prefers a different title: “The Mick Jagger of Mexican Cuisine.”

“Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy explores Diana’s vibrant,  unconventional life, blending vérité with archival footage, photographs and interviews. Viewers accompany her in intimate settings at home – cooking, gardening, and traveling to accept awards and speak to audiences. The film features interviews with notable chefs and friends including Alice Waters, José Andrés, Rick Bayless, and Gabriela Cámara, along with footage from Diana’s TLC cooking show, “The Art of Mexican Cooking.” Whether she is instructing chefs at her infamous “Boot Camp” cooking school, blazing her truck over the cobblestone roads of Zitácuaro or sunbathing with a scotch on her balcony, Diana is captivatingly bold, spirited, and unapologetically herself.”

Sir William Lewis of the Winery Restaurant and Wine Bar in TustinThe Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar matches contemporary California regional cuisine, with a hip, vibrant, sophisticated setting, to create a cutting-edge dining experience. Located at The District in Tustin, overlooking the Marina in Newport Beach, and at Westfield UTC in La Jolla, The Winery culinary team is led by Executive Chef & Partner Yvon Goetz.” The other Founding Partners are JC Clow and Wine Director William Lewis.

All of The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar restaurants have reopened for dine-in. The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar locations offer a warm and passionate menu complemented by the perfect wines – almost endless possibilities and something to suit every palate. Wine Director & Founding Partner William Lewis will update us on what is available currently and what they were able to offer their guests during the ban on dine-in.

Piero Salvaggio of Valentino Santa MonicaLegendary Los Angeles Restaurateur and ever-gracious host Piero Selvaggio attentively presided over the iconic Valentino in Santa Monica for over 46 years. Valentino was truly a landmark establishment defining regional Italian fine dining in the West combined with a deep and well-maintained wine cellar and polished service. Piero’s most recent venture was the debut of Louie’s by the Bay (modern Italian steakhouse) in Newport Beach with Restaurateur Ron Salisbury.

His new project is with acclaimed Chef Celestino Drago with the just relaunched Drago Centro in Downtown Los Angeles. “At Drago Centro, located in the heart of Downtown Los Angeles, Chef Celestino Drago is giving his classic Italian techniques a contemporary flair. The lunch and dinner menus at Drago Centro feature a wide range of options, from hand-cranked pastas, savory steaks and elegant desserts sure to end the meal on a sweet note.”

We’ll hear all about it with Piero Selvaggio.

Douglas Barden MargerumLeading the Margerum Wine Company team (with a new tasting room at Hotel Californian in the State Building) is creator and namesake, Douglas Barden Margerum, a long- term Santa Barbara resident who has been a fixture in the Santa Barbara food and wine scene for over 35 years. Doug is also is a member of the (rescheduled for 2021) Santa Barbara Culinary Experience Advisory Committee.

“Margerum Wine Company produces limited quantities of wines made from grapes grown both on their estate vineyard and grapes purchased from other top vineyards from in and around Santa Barbara County. The 18-acre estate vineyard is planted exclusively to Rhône grape varietals. The acreage is divided between limestone hillsides and gravelly alluvial flatlands along Alamo Pintado Creek. The wines are made at their state-of-the-art winery located on Industrial Way in Buellton.”

“Owner and Director of Winemaking, Douglas Barden Margerum, works with the top vineyards from the cool, eastern end of the valley in Happy Canyon to the western end’s cold vineyards of Sta. Rita Hills. Doug carefully selects the vineyards with meticulous attention to detail in all factors influencing the ultimate quality of the wines, including pruning, soil, climate, and farming methods.”

“Margerum Wine Company is committed to creating hand-crafted wines using only the highest quality grapes in order to make wines that are indicative of the place where they are grown. They strive to make wines naturally, to make wines that have individual characteristics and to make wines with personality. The scale of production is kept at a level where they can touch and know the wine as it is raised to the bottle – the antithesis of mass production. The standards of quality are measured by their own rigid criteria – not by external sources. They make wines they personally enjoy – some to drink young, others for long aging in cool cellars for future generations to enjoy, but mostly to share at the table with family and friends.”

“Doug’s multi-faceted background as the Sommelier/Owner of The Wine Cask, a Wine Spectator Grand Award restaurant recipient, and as a highly respected winemaker made him sought out by a variety of wineries to assist in the formation of their brands. Doug has consulted for Chêne Bleu super Rhône wines in France, and continues to consult for La Encantada Vineyards, Rancho Boa Vista and Happy Canyon Vineyards, all in Santa Barbara County, as well as the Santa Barbara wines of Paradise Springs Winery based in Virginia.”

Avi Kapoor of Kapoor's Akbar“Under the supervision of prominent executive chef Avi Kapoor, the latest incarnation of the Akbar restaurant family, Kapoor’s Akbar, offers diners an innovative Indian food experience on the edge of Downtown L.A. Relying on traditional recipes passed down through the family but updated with non-traditional techniques and ingredients, Kapoor’s Akbar serves freshly prepared dishes that are rich in taste, temptingly presented and always memorable.”

“Omnivores, vegetarians and vegans will find a wide range of selections to satisfy their hunger, joining the thousands of diners who have feasted over the years with generations of Kapoor Family restauranteurs.”

We gently pull Chef Avi away from the tandoor oven for a visit.

Chef Andrew Gruel savoring a New Jersey style PizzaOur 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 regularly updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is slowly starting to come back but with a lot of new rules that restrict guest counts. Alternately Take-Out / Delivery when you can surely helps…

Covid 19 has impacted the food system across the United States. Oddly there are spot shortages of foodstuffs in some areas and surpluses in others. We’ll, of course, “Ask the Chef.”

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: “Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy” with Producer & Director Elizabeth Carroll
Segment Three: The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar with Founding Partner & Wine Director William Lewis
Segment Four: Restaurateur Piero Selvaggio, Drago Centro and Louie’s by the Bay Part One
Segment Five: Restaurateur Piero Selvaggio, Drago Centro and Louie’s by the Bay Part Two
Segment Six: Doug Margerum, Margerum Wine Company, Santa Barbara
Segment Seven: Chef Avinash Kapoor, Kapoor’s Akbar, Downtown Los Angeles
Segment Eight: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”

June 20: Marco Zapien, Anne Marie Panoringan, Donato Poto, Upper West, Foundation 10 Creative

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Anne Marie Panoringan, Voice of OC’s Food Columnist Part One
Segment Three: Anne Marie Panoringan, Voice of OC’s Food Columnist Part Two
Segment Four: Donato Poto, Co-Proprietor, Providence Restaurant, Hollywood
Segment Five: Chef Andrew Gruel, Co-Host & Slapfish Restaurant Group
Segment Six: Chef Nick Shipp of The Upper West, Santa Monica
Segment Seven: Tara Lazar, Founder, Foundation 10 Creative, Palm Springs Part One
Segment Eight: Tara Lazar, Founder, Foundation 10 Creative, Palm Springs Part Two

Happy Father’s Day to all the wonderful Dads out there.

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and TaqueriaCorporate Chef Marco Zapien of Melissa’s is conducting an exciting Virtual Cooking Class on Friday evening, June 26th @ 5:00 p.m. with all the proceeds going to the Illumination Foundation. He’s demonstrating the preparation of Melissa’s Baby Dutch Yellow Potato & Shrimp Paquet. We’re in the Melissa’s kitchen with Chef Marco.

Anne Marie Panoringan is Voice of OC’s well-informed food columnist. She reports industry news, current events and trends. Panoringan’s prior efforts includes writing about food for 8 years at the OC Weekly in which she interviewed more than 330 chefs, restauranteurs and industry professionals for her weekly “On the Line” column. Anne Marie’s work has been recognized by the Orange County Press Club. Since dine-in is now back in Orange County Anne Marie has been making the rounds to observe the “new normal” in dining. She joins us to share how OC restaurants are adapting while creatively surmounting numerous obstacles.

For 15 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 15th 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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is slowly starting to come back but with a lot of new rules. Alternately take-out/delivery when you can surely helps… It’s Father’s Day so as a proud Dad, Chef Andrew has some thoughts on taking care of Dad on his special day. Bet there are some handy Father’s Day cooking tips along the way, too. We’ll, of course, “Ask the Chef.”

Locally owned and operated, The Upper West opened its doors in 2010 and not long after its arrival on Pico Boulevard in Santa Monica has emerged as a consistent local favorite.  Upper West’s ever-changing menu draws inspiration from around the world while maintaining eclectic flavors of Chef Nick Shipp’s very own. We pull Chef Nick away from his newly reopened kitchen for a chat.

Palm Springs resident Tara Lazar is the Founder of Foundation 10 Creative, a prominent, and growing, hospitality group in Palm Springs. Over the past decade, Tara has created a small empire of iconic restaurants in the ever-growing travel destination of Palm Springs. Under the F10 family is the prominent brunch hotspot Cheeky’s, the handsomely appointed modern steakhouse Mr. Lyons and their classic cocktail hideaway Seymour’s, a lively and al fresco Italian eatery Birba, and the sleek and serene 34-room boutique hotel, Alcazar. Tara joins us to talk about the reopening of all the distinctive properties.

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

Food Journalist Anne Marie PanoringanAnne Marie Panoringan is Voice of OC’s well-informed food columnist She adroitly reports industry news, current events and trends. Panoringan’s prior work includes writing about food for 8 years at the OC Weekly in which she interviewed more than 330 chefs, restauranteurs and industry professionals for her weekly “On the Line column.” She has been recognized by the Orange County Press Club.”

Since dine-in is back in Orange County Anne Marie has been making the rounds to observe the “new normal” in dining. She joins us to share how OC restaurants are adapting including Bosscat Kitchen & Libations in Newport Beach.

Donato Poto of Providence plus Connie and Ted'sFor 15 years, Providence in Hollywood has elevated the standard of modern American seafood restaurants with exemplary service. Newly reopened for dine-in you 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.””

Restaurateur Donato Poto is with us to reminisce, celebrate the 15th Anniversary and look to the future.

Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant GroupOur 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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is slowly starting to come back but with a lot of new rules. Alternately Take-Out / Delivery when you can surely helps…

It’s Father’s Day so as a proud Dad, Chef Andrew has some thoughts on taking care of Dad on his special day. Bet there are some inspiring Father’s Day cooking tips along the way, too. We’ll, of course, “Ask the Chef.”

Nick Shipp of the Upper WestLocally owned and operated, The Upper West opened its doors in 2010 and not long after its arrival on Pico Boulevard in Santa Monica has emerged as a consistent local favorite.  Upper West’s ever-changing menu draws inspiration from around the world while maintaining eclectic flavors of Chef Nick Shipp’s very own.

“Our dinner menu (currently served Tuesday through Sunday from 3:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.) is always evolving and includes ingredients sourced locally from the Santa Monica Farmers Market as well as local farmers such as Weiser Farms, Niman Ranch, Jimenez Family Farm and Harry’s Berries. Our chef, Nick Shipp, has been described by food critics as a “mad scientist, where no two dining experiences are ever alike.”

“Our wall decor changes regularly, as we host one local artist for each season of the year.”

Dine-in has returned at The Upper West. Happy Hour is back, too, with beverages only served Tuesday through Sunday from 5 to 7:00 p.m.

Curbside To-Go continues to be available, too. Menu selections include Food for 2, Family-style Dinners, Large & Small Plates, sandwiches, desserts and libations.

We entice Chef Nick away from his newly reopened kitchen for a chat.

Tara Lazar of Founders 10 CreativePalm Springs resident Tara Lazar is the Founder of Foundation 10 Creative, a prominent, and growing, hospitality group in Palm Springs.

Over the past decade, Tara has created a small empire of iconic restaurants in the ever-growing travel destination of Palm Springs.

Under the F10 family is the locals’ favorite breakfast, lunch and brunch hotspot Cheeky’s, the handsomely appointed modern steakhouse Mr. Lyons and their classic cocktail hideaway Seymour’s, a lively and al fresco Italian eatery Birba and the sleek and serene 34-room boutique hotel, Alcazar.

Initially started as a personal project to entertain and serve friends, F10 Creative has grown into a tight-knit network of some of the best food and beverage offerings in town, and continues to opportunistically expand.

Tara is a Palm Springs native, and after spending time traveling, sampling flavors around the world, she returned home to build Cheeky’s as the first establishment in the F10 line. Tara has been hands-on in every step of the way for each property, from creating the menu and cooking on the line, to designing the atmosphere and touching tables nightly. She now employs almost 200 residents of Palm Springs, and has been an influential voice across staffing, sourcing and serving in the hospitality industry.

Tara joins us to talk about the reopening of all her Palm Springs properties.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Anne Marie Panoringan, Voice of OC’s Food Columnist Part One
Segment Three: Anne Marie Panoringan, Voice of OC’s Food Columnist Part Two
Segment Four: Donato Poto, Co-Proprietor, Providence Restaurant, Hollywood
Segment Five: Chef Andrew Gruel, Co-Host & Slapfish Restaurant Group
Segment Six: Chef Nick Shipp of The Upper West, Santa Monica
Segment Seven: Tara Lazar, Founder, Foundation 10 Creative, Palm Springs Part One
Segment Eight: Tara Lazar, Founder, Foundation 10 Creative, Palm Springs Part Two

June 13: Lip Smacking Foodie Tours, Factory Place Hospitality Group, Connie and Ted’s, Josiah Citrin

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Las Vegas’ Lip Smacking Foodie Tours and Finger Licking Foodie Tours Part One
Segment Three: Las Vegas’ Lip Smacking Foodie Tours and Finger Licking Foodie Tours Part Two
Segment Four: Matteo Ferdinandi & Chef Angelo Auriana, Factory Place Hospitality Group, Los Angeles & Las Vegas Part One
Segment Five: Matteo Ferdinandi & Chef Angelo Auriana, Factory Place Hospitality Group, Los Angeles & Las Vegas Part Two
Segment Six: Matthew De Marte, General Manager, Connie & Ted’s, West Hollywood
Segment Seven: Chef & Restaurateur Josiah Citrin, Melisse & Citrin, Santa Monica
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Co-Host & Slapfish Restaurant Group

Chefs and restaurateurs are honestly the most generous people we know. In times of need they are always the very first in generously giving back and meaningfully supporting their communities. Truly remarkable…Right now as dine-in slowly returns at greatly reduced capacity restaurants urgently need our support to stay afloat. Kindly keep this in mind and please do what you possibly can (as you can afford) to support a community-focused, local restaurant….

As always, we greatly appreciate you being a part of our loyal listening audience. Truly couldn’t do it every week without the enthusiastic encouragement of the foodie community.

Food lovers are now able to eat and explore their way through Downtown Las Vegas like never before with a pair of private, self-guided, e-assisted culinary tours created by Finger Licking Foodie Tours. The brand-new company represents a follow-up, companion business to the successful Lip Smacking Foodie Tours created by Las Vegas entrepreneur and hospitality-industry veteran, Donald Contursi. The new self-guided Finger Licking Foodie Tours (Downtown and Arts District) offers guests a fun and innovative way to support three top restaurants in the Las Vegas community, while enjoying an array of Instagramable dishes in one outing. Don Contursi joins us with the salivating details.

Factory Place Hospitality Group, a restaurant group led by Restaurateur Matteo Ferdinandi, was founded in March of 2013. Executive Chef and Business Partner Angelo Auriana, joined Ferdinandi and his wife, Francine Diamond-Ferdinandi, in August 2013 shortly before the opening of The Factory Kitchen in Downtown Los Angeles. The L.A. collection of establishments also includes Brera Ristorante and sixth+mill pizzeria. Las Vegas properties are Matteo’s Ristorante Italiano in The Venetian Resort and sixth+mill ristorante, pizzeria & bar at The Grand Canal Shoppes. The Las Vegas establishments have recently reopened for dine-in service. Matteo Ferdinandi is graciously at our service.

Since partners Chef Michael Cimarusti, Donato Poto, and Craig Nickoloff opened Connie and Ted’s in West Hollywood in 2013 they have redefined the concept of a casual seafood dinner house serving premium seafood. Poised to reopen for dine-in Connie & Ted’s just celebrated their 7th Anniversary. Opening General Manager Matthew De Marte (a 3rd generation restaurant professional) provides all the tasty details.

Chef & Restaurateur Josiah Citrin is an accomplished culinary expert and veteran of Los Angeles’s gourmet dining scene, with more than 25 years of experience. He is a two-star Michelin chef and owner of Santa Monica’s highly-acclaimed Mélisse & Citrin, Charcoal Venice, Dear John’s (with Hans & Patti Rockenwagner) in Culver City and Openaire at The Line Hotel. His culinary philosophy, “In Pursuit of Excellence” sets the standard for all of his concepts, whether fine-dining or casual.

We entice Chef Josiah Citrin out of his busy kitchens for an update on his area restaurant properties.

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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is slowly starting to come back but with a lot of new rules. Alternately take-out/delivery when you can surely helps…All levels of government have sincerely pledged to support struggling (but essential) small businesses as we start to slowly recover from the COVID 19 crisis. Chef Andrew has a startling personal example of local bureaucratic fumbling at its best. We’re also starting to see a COVID 19 surcharge on select restaurant checks. Chef Andrew shares his informed thoughts. We’ll, of course, “Ask the Chef.”

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

Donald Contursi of Lipsmacking Foodie ToursFood lovers are now able to eat and explore their way through Downtown Las Vegas like never before with a pair of private, self-guided, e-assisted culinary tours created by Finger Licking Foodie Tours. The brand-new company represents a follow-up, companion business to the successful Lip Smacking Foodie Tours created by Las Vegas entrepreneur and hospitality-industry veteran, Donald Contursi.

The new self-guided Finger Licking Foodie Tours (Downtown and Arts District) offers guests a fun and innovative way to support three top restaurants in the Las Vegas community, while enjoying an array of Instagramable dishes in one outing. Each tour requires a minimum of just two patrons, so guests can safely dine with their closest family and loved ones.

“With restaurant capacities limited due to public health restrictions and reservations at the hottest restaurants challenging, Finger Licking Foodie Tours provide immediate VIP seating with signature dishes served fresh, shortly after arrival. Tours are “led” by a virtual tour guide who provides a map of the route, interesting tidbits along the way and a guided walk through Downtown Container Park to support local small businesses.”

“This tour provides an intimate and personalized foodie experience,” explains Contursi. “Guests receive an online map, as well as a link to an innovative virtual tour guide who provides commentary for each fascinating stop along the way including a walk- through Downtown Container Park to support small businesses. On this 2.5-hour experience in the city’s exciting, revitalized downtown, guests will visit three acclaimed restaurants, enjoying superb service and three unforgettable dishes at each venue.”

Don Contursi joins us with the delectable details.

Matteo Ferdinandi of the Factory KitchenFactory Place Hospitality Group, a restaurant group led by Restaurateur Matteo Ferdinandi, was founded in March of 2013. Executive Chef and Business Partner Angelo Auriana, joined Ferdinandi and his wife, Francine Diamond-Ferdinandi, in August 2013 shortly before the opening of The Factory Kitchen in Downtown Los Angeles.

The L.A. collection of establishments also includes Brera Ristorante and sixth+mill pizzeria. This trio of restaurants has reopened for Pick-Up orders Wednesday through Saturday from 3 to 8 p.m. via Tock.

Las Vegas properties are Matteo’s Ristorante Italiano in The Venetian Resort and sixth+mill ristorante, pizzeria & bar at The Grand Canal Shoppes. The Las Vegas properties have recently reopened for dine-in service.

Matteo Ferdinandi is graciously at our service along with Chef Angelo.

Matthew de Marte wearing a mask at Connie and Ted'sSince partners Chef Michael Cimarusti, Donato Poto, and Craig Nickoloff opened Connie and Ted’s in West Hollywood in 2013 they have redefined the concept of a casual seafood dinner house serving premium seafood. Poised to reopen for dine-in Connie & Ted’s just celebrated their 7th Anniversary.

“At Connie and Ted’s you’ll find simply prepared fish and shellfish, inspired by the classic clam shacks, oyster bars, and fish houses, that dot the New England Seaboard and the Western Coast.”

During the ban on dine-in Connie & Ted’s has been serving guests with a full menu prepared To-Go & via delivery through TOCK.

Opening General Manager Matthew De Marte (a 3rd generation restaurant professional) provides all the tasty details.

Josiah CitrinChef & Restaurateur Josiah Citrin is an accomplished culinary expert and veteran of Los Angeles’s gourmet dining scene, with more than 25 years of experience. He is a two-star Michelin chef and owner of Santa Monica’s highly-acclaimed Mélisse & Citrin, Charcoal Venice, Dear John’s (with Hans & Patti Rockenwagner) in Culver City and Openaire at The Line Hotel. His culinary philosophy, “In Pursuit of Excellence” sets the standard for all of his concepts, whether fine-dining or casual.

The combination of Melisse and Citrin are currently offering a single Takeaway dinner menu for Thursday, Friday, Saturday & Sunday. Both Charcoal and Dear John’s have reopened for dinner dine-in.

We entice Chef Josiah Citrin out of his busy kitchens for an update on his restaurant properties.

Chef Andrew Gruel savoring a New Jersey style PizzaOur 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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is slowly starting to come back but with a lot of new rules. Take-out / Delivery when you can surely helps…

All levels of government have sincerely pledged to support struggling (but essential) small businesses as we start to slowly recover from the financial impact COVID 19 crisis. Chef Andrew has a startling personal example of local bureaucratic fumbling at its best. We’re also starting to see a COVID 19 surcharge on some restaurant checks. Chef Andrew shares his informed thoughts. We’ll, of course, “Ask the Chef.”

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Las Vegas’ Lip Smacking Foodie Tours and Finger Licking Foodie Tours Part One
Segment Three: Las Vegas’ Lip Smacking Foodie Tours and Finger Licking Foodie Tours Part Two
Segment Four: Matteo Ferdinandi & Chef Angelo Auriana, Factory Place Hospitality Group, Los Angeles & Las Vegas Part One
Segment Five: Matteo Ferdinandi & Chef Angelo Auriana, Factory Place Hospitality Group, Los Angeles & Las Vegas Part Two
Segment Six: Matthew De Marte, General Manager, Connie & Ted’s, West Hollywood
Segment Seven: Chef & Restaurateur Josiah Citrin, Melisse & Citrin, Santa Monica
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Co-Host & Slapfish Restaurant Group

June 6: California Fish Grill, Few For All, Troon Vineyard, La Fonda on the Plaza

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef Louie Jocson, Vice President, Food & Beverage, California Fish Grill
Segment Three: “FEW for all” with Chefs Tyler Curtis, Mallory Cayon and Restaurateur Ramzi Budayr
Segment Four: Craig Camp, General Manager & Winegrower, Troon Vineyard, Applegate Valley, Oregon Part One
Segment Five: Craig Camp, General Manager & Winegrower, Troon Vineyard, Applegate Valley, Oregon Part Two
Segment Six: Santa Fe’s La Fonda On the Plaza with Ed Pulsifer and Chef de Cuisine Randy Tapia Part One
Segment Seven: Santa Fe’s La Fonda On the Plaza with Ed Pulsifer and Chef de Cuisine Randy Tapia Part Two
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Co-Host & Slapfish Restaurant Group

Chefs and restaurateurs are honestly the most generous people we know. In times of need they are always the very first in generously giving back and meaningfully supporting their communities. Truly remarkable…Right now as dine-in slowly returns at greatly reduced capacity restaurants urgently need our support to stay afloat. Kindly keep this in mind and please do what you possibly can (as you can afford) to support a community-focused, local restaurant….

As always, we greatly appreciate you being a part of our loyal listening audience. Truly couldn’t do it every week without the enthusiastic encouragement of the foodie community.

We all know the experts suggest we get more heart-healthy seafood into our regular diet. How do you dine out and find quality seafood at affordable prices? That’s been the goal of California Fish Grill since the first location opened in 1998. Locations now include both Northern and Southern California and Las Vegas. Chef Louie Jocson, Vice President, Food & Beverage for California Fish Grill, joins us with all the finny details.

What do a pair of entrepreneurial (and motivated) professional chefs along with an accomplished, fine-dining restaurant General Manager do when they are suddenly furloughed from their upscale DTLA hotel properties? They quickly start back to work generously feeding hungry people with fresh pasta through the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank and generating income. The unlikely success story is “FEW for All.” We’ll meet the dynamic and enterprising team of Restaurant General Manager Ramzi Budayr (ex-NoMad DTLA,) Pastry Chef Mallory Cayon (The Hoxton DTLA,) and Tyler Curtis (Chef de Cuisine – Pilot at The Hoxton.)

Troon Vineyard estate wines, from Oregon’s Applegate Valley, are inspired by the wines of the Mediterranean coasts of Southern Europe. “Place names like Madiran, Cahors, Bandol, Languedoc and Sardegna have provided the varieties which shine in their vineyards high in the Siskiyou Mountains. The winery is Demeter Biodynamic® and Organic Certified. Troon Vineyard is dedicated to regenerative agriculture and practice Biodynamic® agriculture in their quest to put back more than they take from the property’s plants and soils.” General Manager & Winegrower Craig Camp joins us to pull the cork on Troon Vineyard.

Since 2012 Edward (Ed) T. Pulsifer has been Santa Fe’s La Fonda On the Plaza’s high-profile Director of Sales. He also enthusiastically functions as the unofficial resident historian of the storied Hotel (dating back to 1922.) It’s one of the key leadership positions for the property. In 2016 the New Mexico Hospitality Association recognized Ed as the Hospitality Professional of the Year. Pulsifer joined La Fonda from Heritage Hotels and Resorts, where he oversaw sales and marketing for seven boutique hotels in the Southwest. La Fonda continued to safely welcome guests during the COVID 19 crisis and all their popular restaurants have now reopened for dine-in. We’ll revisit 35-year Hospitality veteran, Ed Pulsifer.

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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is slowly starting to come back but with a lot of new rules. Take-out/delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first. Fishermen who supply seafood to restaurants have been severely impacted by the COVID 19 crisis. How are they coping? What’s been the impact on the price and supply of all seafood? We’ll “Ask the Chef.”

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

Louie Jocson of California Fish GrillWe all know the experts suggest we get more heart-healthy seafood into our regular diet. How do you dine out and find quality seafood at affordable prices? That’s been the goal of California Fish Grill since the first location opened in 1998. Locations now include both Northern and Southern California and Las Vegas.

“Since 1998, California Fish Grill has been serving quality seafood at affordable prices to our loyal customers and their families. The vision for our restaurant came more from a simple question than the thought of a successful business enterprise. It is widely known that seafood is rich in nutrients and healthy omega-3 oils. The Surgeon General recommends that Americans eat 2-3 servings of seafood per week to maintain a healthy lifestyle.”

“Why is it so hard to find a place that serves great seafood at prices someone could afford to eat 2-3 times per week?” That is where the concept of California Fish Grill was born.”

“Our menu consists of grilled and fried seafood to satisfy anyone’s palate. We also offer wonderful crisp, fresh salads topped with your choice of grilled fish or seafood. One of our most popular offerings is fish tacos. We offer the widest variety of fish tacos served anywhere. From grilled Mahi-Mahi, Tuna, Salmon and Shrimp to our fried selections of Arctic White Fish and Shrimp.”

New are the selection of Cali Bowls including the Paleo Salmon Bowl (lightly seasoned salmon, cauliflower rice, rosemary zucchini mix, fresh herbs and pickled onion) and the Dynamite (Keto) Shrimp Bowl (quick-fried shrimp in California Fish Grill’s dynamite sauce with fresh cilantro, green onions, daikon sprouts, tomatoes, cabbage and sesame soy sauce.)

Veteran Chef Louie Jocson, Vice President, Food & Beverage for California Fish Grill, joins us with all the finny details.

Pick me Up Kit featuring granola, greek yogurt and cold brew coffeeWhat do a pair of entrepreneurial (and motivated) professional chefs and an accomplished, fine-dining restaurant General Manager do when they are suddenly furloughed from their DTLA hotel properties? They quickly start back to work generously feeding hungry people with fresh pasta through the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank and generating income. The unlikely success story is FEW for All.” We’ll meet the dynamic and enterprising team of Restaurant General Manager Ramzi Budayr (ex-NoMad DTLA,) Pastry Chef Mallory Cayon (The Hoxton DTLA,) and Tyler Curtis (Chef de Cuisine – Pilot at The Hoxton.)

“It all started as an idea. COVID-19 hit all of us in ways no one could have imagined. But through our community, the lovely hearts of Los Angelenos and the support of YOU, FEW for all was born. We appreciate YOU.”

“FEW For All (otherwise known as Flour + Eggs + Water For All) was founded by a team of recently unemployed food & beverage workers to provide nourishment for the Los Angeles community during this unprecedented public health crisis.”

“Using three basic but increasingly scarce ingredients – flour, eggs & water – we make and sell homemade, restaurant-quality pasta, bake-at-home desserts and pasta sauces via our Instagram page @fewforall – and with every item purchased, we pledge to donate one pound of pasta to the Los Angeles Food Bank. In light of the massive spike in unemployment in the hospitality community as a result of the Coronavirus, we also offer fellow food & beverage workers free quarts of pasta should they lack the means to make a financial contribution.”

“We currently sell three pastas on our permanent menu: rigatoni, lumache & gluten free for $12 per quart, with special pasta shapes being launched weekly. We also sell pints of spicy pomodoro & pesto cheese fonduta for $10. For dessert, we offer bake-at-home cinnamon rolls for $8 per tin, and rolls of homemade, frozen cookie dough for $10, available in chocolate chip and gluten free peanut butter.”

“We offer pickup in the Arts District (at 672 S Santa Fe Ave) from 1PM – 6PM, Wednesday – Sunday. Free, contactless delivery is also available. We accept payment via Venmo & Zelle to minimize in-person contact.”

Craig Camp of Troon VineyardsTroon Vineyard estate wines, from Oregon’s Applegate Valley, are inspired by the wines of the Mediterranean coasts of Southern Europe. Place names like Madiran, Cahors, Bandol, Languedoc and Sardegna have provided the varieties which shine in their vineyards high in the Siskiyou Mountains. The winery is Demeter Biodynamic® and Organic Certified.

“Troon Vineyard is dedicated to regenerative agriculture and we practice Biodynamic® agriculture in our quest to put back more than we take from our plants and soils. We believe the only route to memorable wines, that reflect the terroir of where they were grown, is to be found in the healthy soils and vines that are the foundation of Biodynamic® agriculture. This philosophy continues in the cellar where our winemaking is minimalist and we use only native yeasts with no additives to ferment our wines and eschew the use of new oak barrels to reveal each nuance of wines grown in Oregon’s Applegate Valley.”

“Winemaking at Troon is straightforward. Our grapes are field sorted by the same vineyard crew that tended them all season. Our goal is to express our vineyards rather than winemaking techniques in our wines. All Troon Vineyard wines are fermented only with native yeasts and no commercial yeasts, acids, sugar, enzymes or any additives are added to any of the wines. Our white wines are whole-cluster pressed then barrel fermented in mature French Oak barrels. For “Orange Wines” we are now using clay amphorae to allow extended skin contact after fermentation. For red wines we focus on using whole-cluster and whole berry fruit in our fermenters, then use only mature French Oak barrels for ageing so that every nuance of our unique Applegate Valley fruit can express itself it our wines.”

“We are a new entity on a new voyage with a new mission since the arrival of owners Denise and Bryan White. Biodynamics® will reinvigorate our soils and our vines, but it is also reinvigorating us. It is those combined energies that will be expressed in our wines. Wines full of energy are exciting wines and we could not be more excited about making them. Our desire to make special wines from what we know is a vineyard, a terroir, with exceptional potential is what started us on this voyage to begin with.”

General Manager & Winegrower Craig Camp joins us to pull the cork on Troon Vineyard.

Ed Pulsifer of La Fonda on the PlazaSince 2012 Edward (Ed) T. Pulsifer has been Santa Fe’s La Fonda On the Plaza’s high-profile Director of Sales. He also enthusiastically functions as the unofficial resident historian of the storied Hotel established in 1922. It’s one of the key leadership positions for the property. In 2016 the New Mexico Hospitality Association recognized Ed as the Hospitality Professional of the Year. Pulsifer joined La Fonda from Heritage Hotels and Resorts, where he oversaw sales and marketing for seven boutique hotels in the Southwest.

La Fonda continued to safely welcome guests during the COVID 19 crisis and all their popular restaurants under the direction of long-time Executive Chef Lane Warner have now reopened for dine-in.

La Plazuela is La Fonda’s signature restaurant serving Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner with a New Mexico flair. New is The Terrace Rooftop Garden Patio serving daily from 3 to 9:00 p.m. (weather permitting.) The Bell Tower Bar (seasonal) has reopened known for their signature Bell Ringer Margaritas and unrivaled Sunset views.

“Step into the past and experience the splendor of the American Southwest at La Fonda on the PlazaTM, the only hotel situated on the historic Santa Fe Plaza. Start your vacation in Santa Fe and experience the allure of old -world charm at one of the best Santa Fe hotels, where tasteful, modern conveniences blend with the warmth of authentic New Mexican style.”

We’ll revisit 35-year Hospitality veteran, Ed Pulsifer.

Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant GroupOur 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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is starting to come back but with a lot of new rules. Take-out / Delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first.

Fishermen who supply seafood to restaurants have been severely negatively impacted by the COVID 19 crisis. How are they coping? What’s been the impact on the price of all seafood? We’ll “Ask the Chef.”

Slapfish is hosting Doctors, Nurses, Medical Personnel, Police, Firefighters & EMT’s to a complimentary meal To-Go. Need to be in uniform or have appropriate ID to qualify. The participating Slapfish locations are Huntington Beach, Brea, Irvine and Laguna Beach.

Kids eat free at Slapfish, too, when their parents order Takeout.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef Louie Jocson, Vice President, Food & Beverage, California Fish Grill
Segment Three: “FEW for all” with Chefs Tyler Curtis, Mallory Cayon and Restaurateur Ramzi Budayr
Segment Four: Craig Camp, General Manager & Winegrower, Troon Vineyard, Applegate Valley, Oregon Part One
Segment Five: Craig Camp, General Manager & Winegrower, Troon Vineyard, Applegate Valley, Oregon Part Two
Segment Six: Santa Fe’s La Fonda On the Plaza with Ed Pulsifer and Chef de Cuisine Randy Tapia Part One
Segment Seven: Santa Fe’s La Fonda On the Plaza with Ed Pulsifer and Chef de Cuisine Randy Tapia Part Two
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Co-Host & Slapfish Restaurant Group

May 30: Jet Tila, Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotels, Hitching Post 2, Pamela Salzman

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotels with Kimberli Munkres and Hotelier Karina Castenda Part One
Segment Three: Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotels with Kimberli Munkres and Hotelier Karina Castenda Part Two
Segment Four: Chef Jet Tila Part One
Segment Five: Chef Jet Tila Part Two
Segment Six: Chef Frank Ostini of Hitching Post 2 Restaurant & Hitching Post Wines
Segment Seven: Cooking Instructor Pamela Salzman with Quicker Than Quick
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Co-Host & Slapfish Restaurant Group

Chefs and restaurateurs are honestly the most generous people we know. In times of need they are always the very first in generously giving back and meaningfully supporting their communities. Truly remarkable…Right now as dine-in slowly returns at greatly reduced capacity restaurants urgently need our support to stay afloat. Kindly keep this in mind and please do what you possibly can (as you can afford) to support a community-focused, local restaurant….

As always, we greatly appreciate you being a part of our loyal listening audience. Truly couldn’t do it every week without the enthusiastic encouragement of the foodie community.

“Under the umbrella of Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotels Palm Springs is home to almost 80 extraordinary small boutique hotels of exceptional architectural & cultural diversity. From quaint inns and quietly secluded bungalows to hip and modern poolside-hangouts, they cater to the spectrum of Palm Springs travelers’ tastes. Whether you want to disappear for a couple of days, or dive into the Palm Springs adventure of a lifetime, the visionary hoteliers make it their mission to get to know their guests and create a memorable stay in this distinctly fashionable desert oasis.” With the boutique hotels in Palm Springs poised to reopen and again welcome guests we’re joined by Kimberli Munkres and hotelier and restaurateur Karina Castenda.

Food Network’s Chef Jet Tila is well-known to the “SoCal Restaurant Show’s” listeners. He co-hosted the show for the first 2 years. You’ve seen him on “Iron Chef America” as Alton Brown’s well-informed Floor Reporter, “Cutthroat Kitchen,” “Guy’s Grocery Games,” “Beat Bobby Flay” and many more shows. “Ready Jet Cook – How to Make Pad Thai with Jet Tila” airing on FoodNetwork.com and YouTube was nominated for a prestigious James Beard Foundation Award this year. The series “Ready Jet Cook” is also up for a Daytime Emmy Award. We’re back in the kitchen with Chef Jet.

It’s hard to believe but until fairly recently Hitching Post Wines (made famous in the Oscar-winning 2004 feature motion picture, “Sideways,”) never had a tasting room. That all changed for the better in August of 2018 when acclaimed winemakers Gray Hartley and Frank Ostini debuted a mid-century farmhouse, destination Tasting Room (with the bonus of lunch service delivered from Hitching Post 2) adjacent to Chef Ostini’s prominent Hitching Post 2 Restaurant in Buellton. The Tasting Room is still on hiatus but Hitching Post 2 has reopened for pick-up and delivery. Hitching Post Wine packages To-Go available, too. We nudge Chef Frank away from his Santa Maria style BBQ grill to share the details.

“From Los Angeles-based cooking instructor and author of Kitchen Matters, Pamela Salzman, comes Pamela Salzman’s Quicker Than Quick: 140 Crave-Worthy Recipes for Healthy Comfort Foods in 30 Minutes or Less – a cookbook complete with quick, delicious meals and kitchen hacks that make home cooking a breeze. This is the book you will reach for time and again when you need to make something quick but nutritious. Pamela shares an arsenal of cooking class-tested, family-approved, easy, healthful recipes that will have you covered through breakfast, lunch, and dinner – and almost everything can be made in thirty minutes or less.” Pamela Salzman is our guest.

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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is starting to come back but with a lot of new rules. Take-out/delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first. Takeout packaging is now of concern. Is it finally becoming more green and recyclable? How about affordability ? We’ll “Ask the Chef.”

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

Kimberli Munkres of Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotels“Under the cooling umbrella of Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotels Palm Springs is home to almost 80 extraordinary small boutique hotels of exceptional architectural & cultural diversity. “From quaint inns and quietly secluded bungalows to hip and modern poolside-hangouts, they cater to the spectrum of Palm Springs travelers’ tastes. Whether you want to disappear for a couple of days, or dive into the Palm Springs adventure of a lifetime, the visionary hoteliers make it their mission to get to know their guests and create a memorable stay in this distinctly fashionable desert oasis.”

“And as Palm Springs locals, they have dedicated themselves to creating a home away from home for each guest, infused with a sense of community.”

With the boutique hotels in Palm Springs poised to reopen and again welcome guests we’re joined by Kimberli Munkres and hotelier and restaurateur Karina Castenda.

Karina Castenda of Los Arboles HotelKarina Castenda is part of the 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.

“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.”

Jet Tila and a heritage pig at Cochon 555 in 2013Food Network’s Chef Jet Tila is well-known to the “SoCal Restaurant Show’s” listeners. He was the co-host of the radio show for the initial 2 years. You’ve seen him on “Iron Chef America” as Alton Brown’s well-informed Floor Reporter, “Cutthroat Kitchen,” “Guy’s Grocery Games,” “Beat Bobby Flay” and more shows.

Ready Jet Cook – How to Make Pad Thai with Jet Tila” airing on FoodNetwork.com and YouTube was nominated for a prestigious James Beard Foundation Award this year. The series “Ready Jet Cook” is also up for a Daytime Emmy Award.

Chef Jet is about to launch an unusual interactive cooking class series for charity on the Zoom platform. He’s also creating new dishes for Pei Wei.

A third cookbook is in the works for Chef Jet. We’ll get a preview.

We’re in the kitchen with Chef Jet.

Frank Ostini of Hitching Post IIIt’s hard to believe but until fairly recently Hitching Post Wines (made famous in the Oscar-winning 2004 feature motion picture, “Sideways,”) never had a tasting room. That all changed for the better in August of 2018 when acclaimed winemakers Gray Hartley and Frank Ostini debuted a mid-century farmhouse, destination Tasting Room (with the bonus of lunch service delivered from Hitching Post 2) adjacent to Chef Ostini’s prominent Hitching Post 2 Restaurant in Buellton. The Tasting Room is still on hiatus but Hitching Post 2 has reopened for pick-up and delivery. Hitching Post Wine packages available, too.

“The Hitching Post 2 blends traditional Santa Maria Barbecue with eclectic local ingredients and award -winning wines for an exciting cuisine that is uniquely its own.”

Chef Frank has put together an impressive Take Home Dinner for Four (Hitching Post BBQ Box) that is delivered to Los Angeles (pick-up at Mar Vista Restaurant every other Tuesday) via Los Alamos Delivers. It includes 1 lb. Prime Top Sirloin Steak, 1 lb. Natural Pork Back Ribs, ½ BBQ’d Fresh Natural Chicken and sides of BBQ’d Baked Potatoes, Rice Pilaf, Assorted Vegetables, Roots Farm Green Salad, Garlic Bread and Salsa. Comes chilled and ready to re-warm at home.

We nudge Chef Frank away from his Santa Maria style BBQ grill to share the details.

Pamela Salzman“From Los Angeles-based cooking instructor and author of Kitchen Matters, Pamela Salzman, comes Pamela Salzman’s Quicker Than Quick: 140 Crave-Worthy Recipes for Healthy Comfort Foods in 30 Minutes or Less– a cookbook complete with quick, delicious meals and kitchen hacks that make home cooking a breeze.”

“Life, whether one works outside the home or not, is really, really busy. In a perfect world, we would write out our meal plans for the week, shop accordingly, and cook nutritious meals every day with ease. But some days, the orthodontist visit runs late, or there’s more traffic than usual, or the chicken was never defrosted. And some days, we just don’t have the energy to cook for an hour even if we have the time.”

Quicker Than Quick is the book you will reach for time and again when you need to make something quick but nutritious. In her second cookbook, Pamela shares an arsenal of cooking class-tested, family-approved, easy, healthful recipes that will have you covered through breakfast, lunch, and dinner – and almost everything can be made in thirty minutes or less.”

“These inventive sheet pan dinners, stovetop skillet meals, Instant Pot recipes, and quick versions of time-consuming comfort foods require minimal hands-on time and don’t use exotic, hard-to-find ingredients. Equally useful are the techniques and tricks that teach you great ways to hack your meals, without sacrificing quality.”

Chef Andrew Gruel savoring a New Jersey style PizzaOur 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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants as dine-in now slowly returns. Take-out/delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first.

Takeout packaging is now of concern because its everywhere. Is it finally becoming more green and recyclable? How about affordability? We’ll “Ask the Chef.”

Slapfish is hosting Doctors, Nurses, Medical Personnel, Police, Firefighters & EMT’s to a complimentary meal To-Go. Need to be in uniform or have appropriate ID to qualify. The participating Slapfish locations are Huntington Beach, Brea, Irvine and Laguna Beach.

Kids eat free at Slapfish, too, when their parents order Takeout.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotels with Kimberli Munkres and Hotelier Karina Castenda Part One
Segment Three: Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotels with Kimberli Munkres and Hotelier Karina Castenda Part Two
Segment Four: Chef Jet Tila Part One
Segment Five: Chef Jet Tila Part Two
Segment Six: Chef Frank Ostini of Hitching Post 2 Restaurant & Hitching Post Wines
Segment Seven: Cooking Instructor Pamela Salzman with Quicker Than Quick
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Co-Host & Slapfish Restaurant Group

May 23: Ross Pangilinan, Al Mancini, Suzanne Goin, Clarissa Nagy, Sol Agave

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef / Proprietor Ross Pangilinan, Mix Mix Kitchen Bar, Terrace by Mix Mix & ReMix Kitchen Bar
Segment Three: Journalist Al Mancini, Staff Writer, Las Vegas Review-Journal
Segment Four: Chef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin, The Lucques Group Part One
Segment Five: Chef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin, The Lucques Group Part Two
Segment Six: Winemaker Clarissa Nagy, c nagy Wines
Segment Seven: Restaurateur Jesse Galvez, Sol Agave, Kaleidoscope Mission Viejo and San Juan Capistrano
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish with “Ask the Chef”

Happy Memorial Day Weekend. Let the season of inspired & relaxing grilling commence…

Chefs and restaurateurs are honestly the most generous people we know. In times of need they are always the very first in generously giving back and meaningfully supporting their communities. Truly remarkable…Right now restaurants urgently need our support to stay afloat. Kindly keep this in mind and please do what you possibly can (as you can afford) to support a community-focused, local restaurant….

As always, we greatly appreciate you being a part of our loyal listening audience. Truly couldn’t do it without the enthusiastic encouragement of the foodie community.

When accomplished fine dining chef Ross Pangilinan left the Patina Group’s Leatherby’s Café Rouge (Segerstrom Center for the Arts) to venture out on his own he wanted to create a more personal, chef-driven concept. His vision came to be as Mix Mix Kitchen Bar located in a bit of an unlikely location in Santa Ana. In normal times it’s a globally inspired dining concept presenting dishes which see influence from traditional French and Italian to modern Filipino cuisines. During the ban on dine-in Chef Ross has shifted to preparing Tapas Family Kits (for 2 or 4 guests) for curbside pick-up. Also in Chef Ross’ family of restaurants is Terrace by Mix Mix at South Coast Plaza and the newly opened ReMix Kitchen Bar in the Long Beach Exchange. Chef Ross joins us with the overview.

One of our most reliable sources of restaurant news in fabulous Las Vegas is Al Mancini, who is a staff writer for The Las Vegas Review-Journal covering food, restaurants and other aspects of entertainment. Al has been working the Vegas food scene for 19 years. He was one of the creators of the popular, and widely referenced, Eating Las Vegas restaurant guidebook series. Al joins us with a report on dining in the restaurants that have been allowed to reopen in Las Vegas.

James Beard Award-winning Chef & Author Suzanne Goin is the Co-Proprietor (with Caroline Styne) of The Lucques Group. a.o.c.and Tavern are back on Thursday through Sunday with take-out for pick up or delivery via TOCK. Lucques’ Sunday Suppers are newly available via Lucques Catering with curbside pick up or delivery via TOCK. Chef Suzanne Goin joins us with all the tantalizing specifics.

Previously we’ve met passionate winemaker Clarissa Nagy who has her own boutique label, c nagy, with a rustic tasting room in historic Orcutt. C nagy wines are “A pure expression of grapes from a vineyard celebrating the experience of Santa Barbara County.” Clarissa has a particular affinity for Pinot Noir but other available current releases include Syrah, Grenache, Gewurztraminer and Pinot Blanc. Winemaker Clarissa Nagy is our encore guest.

Sol Agave, the popular elevated regional Mexican restaurant in South County, operates the original location in San Juan Capistrano and the 2-year old branch in Mission Viejo in Kaleidoscope. San Juan Capistrano is open for to-go orders and Mission Viejo will soon reopen for curbside take out on June 1st. Restaurateur Jesse Galvez shares the secrets of Sol Agave’s Famous Carnitas.

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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Take-out/delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first. Chef Andrew will conclude his revealing commentary on 3rd Party Delivery Services and explain why he suggests you tip the delivery driver in cash. It’s the start of Summer Grilling Season. Chef Andrew has some meaty tips for the backyard master of the grill.

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

Ross Pangilinan of Mix Mix Kitchen BarWhen accomplished fine dining chef Ross Pangilinan left the Patina Group’s Leatherby’s Café Rouge (Segerstrom Center for the Arts) to venture out on his own he wanted to create a more personal, chef-driven concept. His vision came to be as Mix Mix Kitchen Bar located in a bit of an unlikely location in Santa Ana. In normal times it’s a globally inspired dining concept presenting dishes which see influence from traditional French and Italian to modern Filipino cuisines.

During the ban on dine-in Chef Ross has shifted to preparing Tapas Family Kits (for 2 or 4 guests) for curbside pick-up. Also in Chef Ross’ family of restaurants is Terrace by Mix Mix at South Coast Plaza and the newly opened ReMix Kitchen Bar in the Long Beach Exchange.

For Friday, Saturday and Sunday Terrace by Mix Mix is serving Share Plates (for 1 to 10 guests) for curbside pick-up. For Friday, Saturday and Sunday Remix Kitchen Bar offers a Tasting Menu for 2 or 4 guests for curbside pick-up.

Chef Ross joins us with the cuisine overview.

Al Mancini of the Las Vegas Review JournalOne of our most reliable sources of accurate restaurant news in fabulous Las Vegas is Al Mancini, who is a staff writer for The Las Vegas Review Journal covering food, restaurants and other aspects of entertainment. Al has been working the Vegas food scene for 19 years. He was one of the creators of the popular, and widely referenced, Eating Las Vegas restaurant guidebook series.

Al joins us with a report on dining in the restaurants that have been allowed to reopen in Las Vegas. Restaurants located off The Strip have permission to reopen for dine-in with precautions. Establishments located in The Strip hotel casinos (and other hotel casinos) can only reopen if they have outside access to the restaurants that doesn’t necessitate walking through a closed casino floor.

Suzanne Goin of the Lucques GroupJames Beard Award-winning Chef & Author Suzanne Goin is the Co-Proprietor of The Lucques Group. a.o.c. is back on Thursday through Sunday with an all- day menu and classic dinner menu for 4 guests through TOCK. Hours are 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Tavern in Brentwood has returned with an all-day menu offered Thursday through Sunday. Also box assortments of bread and pastries from Larder Baking Co.

With the opening of Lucques, their flagship restaurant, in 1998, James Beard award-winning Che f/ Author Suzanne Goin and award-winning Restaurateur Caroline Styne planted the seeds for The Lucques Group, a Los Angeles hospitality company that comprises two fine dining restaurants – a.o.c. and Tavern. Along with these culinary enterprises, the company also operates Lucques Catering, the Larder Baking Company and comprehensive food services for the Hollywood Bowl. They will operate new restaurants at the highly anticipated Proper Hotel opening in downtown Los Angeles in 2020. The Lucques Group is dedicated to seasonally influenced cooking and focuses on sourcing local, organic produce from which Goin creates soulful dishes that are bold in flavor, vibrant, layered and complex.

LUCQUES CATERING, the full-service catering arm of The Lucques Group, has started take-out and delivery of Suzanne Goin’s signature dishes and menus for enjoying at home. The menus continue with a weekly changing Lucques Supper Series menu created by Suzanne Goin in addition to a complete brunch kit, pantry items and other selections.

An inspired list of sparkling, white, rosé and red wines, and all favorites of Caroline Styne, are available by the bottle or boxed sets. Bar man, Christiaan Röllich, completes the menu with two of his ready-mixed batched cocktails to-go.

Ordering is exclusively through TOCK for safety-compliant curbside pick-up at The Larder Maple Drive from Thursday through Sunday from 4:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. Delivery is also available within a five-mile radius for $15.

“My whole team and I have missed the restaurant and cooking for our guests so terribly for these past weeks, states Suzanne Goin. “We are thrilled to be back with our new version of Sunday Suppers for our guests to enjoy at home—and not just on Sundays! In our new Supper Series, our latest weekly seasonal menus from the market will be available Thursday to Sunday each week.”

Chef Suzanne Goin continues the conversation about the return of Lucques.

Clarissa Nagy of c.nagy winesPreviously we’ve met passionate winemaker Clarissa Nagy who has her own boutique label, c nagy, with a rustic tasting room in historic Orcutt. C nagy wines are “A pure expression of grapes from a vineyard celebrating the experience of Santa Barbara County.” Clarissa has a particular affinity for Pinot Noir but other available current releases include Syrah, Grenache, Gewurztraminer and Pinot Blanc.

Curbside pickup of wines by the bottle is available at the Tasting Room while the signature tastings are on hold.

“People often ask how I started in the wine industry. It was never my plan to make wine. Actually, my original intention was to work with food. Thankfully, food and wine are often paired together. Through that means, wine found me.”

“Pinot Noir and Syrah were my main focus for the next 6 years. I made a Viognier in 2010, but frost would prevent me from doing so in 2011. The loss of Viognier opened the door to work with Pinot Blanc as well, and my journey continued to unfold. The newest chapter of my story is the addition of the tasting room.”

“Winemaking has become my passion. Sharing that joy with others is a priority. I’d love to be able to bring everyone into the vineyard and cellar to experience winemaking firsthand. Since that isn’t realistic, I offer you a taste of my labor. Here is that experience captured in bottle. I hope to share this passion with you in person. Until then, enjoy!”
– Owner/Winemaker Clarissa Nagy

Winemaker Clarissa Nagy is our encore guest.

Jess Galvez of Sol AgaveSol Agave, the popular elevated regional Mexican restaurant in South County, has the original location in San Juan Capistrano and the 2-year old branch in Mission Viejo in Kaleidoscope. San Juan Capistrano is open for to-go orders and Mission Viejo will reopen for curbside take out on June 1st.

Restaurateur Jesse Galvez and his partner Chef Manny Velasco, who was honored as the Golden Foodies 2017 Rising Star Chef of the Year, were at the forefront of the food truck trend when they started Sol Agave as a taco truck in 2015. They attracted such a loyal following for their elevated Mexican cuisine that they decided to open a restaurant in San Juan Capistrano in 2016. The success of that original location lead to moving into a larger space within the same retail center just a year later.

At Sol Agave the focus is on organic ingredients, fresh seafood, USDA Prime steak, and all-natural pork for its carnitas. Signature dishes include Our Famous Carnitas (chef’s famous Mexican braised pork, served with rice, refried beans, sour cream, guacamole, “trocka” sauce, and hand-made corn tortillas), Tacos de Hongo (skirt steak, portabello mushrooms, grilled onions, and cheese served on a hot skillet with salsa morita, rice, refried beans and hand-made tortillas), and Camarones Vallarta (jumbo breaded Mexican prawns, butterflied and stuffed with Dungeness crab, topped in a Creole tomato spicy sauce, and served with cilantro rice.)

Restaurateur Jesse Galvez shares the secrets of Sol Agave’s Famous Carnitas.

Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant GroupOur 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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Take-out/delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first.

Chef Andrew will conclude his revealing commentary on 3rd Party Delivery Services for restaurants and explain why he suggests you tip the delivery driver in cash. It’s the start of Summer Grilling Season. Chef Andrew has some meaty tips for the backyard master of the grill.

Slapfish is hosting Doctors, Nurses, Medical Personnel, Police, Firefighters & EMT’s to a complimentary meal To-Go. Need to be in uniform or have appropriate ID to qualify. The participating Slapfish locations are Huntington Beach, Brea, Irvine and Laguna Beach.

Kids eat free at Slapfish, too, when their parents order Takeout.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef / Proprietor Ross Pangilinan, Mix Mix Kitchen Bar, Terrace by Mix Mix & ReMix Kitchen Bar
Segment Three: Journalist Al Mancini, Staff Writer, Las Vegas Review-Journal
Segment Four: Chef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin, The Lucques Group Part One
Segment Five: Chef & Restaurateur Suzanne Goin, The Lucques Group Part Two
Segment Six: Winemaker Clarissa Nagy, c nagy Wines
Segment Seven: Restaurateur Jesse Galvez, Sol Agave, Kaleidoscope Mission Viejo and San Juan Capistrano
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish with “Ask the Chef”

May 16: Zov’s Bistro and Bakery, Casa Vega, C-CAP with Monti Carlo, Fable & Spirit, Ted Hopson

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Restaurateur Armen Karamardian, Zov’s Bistro & Bakery
Segment Three: Restaurateur Christy Vega, Casa Vega, Sherman Oaks
Segment Four: Chef Monti Carlo with C-CAP Scholarship Recipient Emerson Majano
Segment Five: Chef Monti Carlo with C-CAP Scholarship Recipient Morena Hernandez
Segment Six: Sommelier Ali Coyle, Fable & Spirit, Newport Beach
Segment Seven: Chef & Partner Ted Hopson, The Bellwether, Studio City
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish with “Ask the Chef”

It’s a time of great concern for all of us and our “SoCal Restaurant Show” mission, until the Covid-19 crisis is fully abated, is to provide reliable and genuinely useful information on how the restaurant business is coping with the rapidly evolving events. With an emphasis on the health, safety and well-being of our listeners we’ll be detailing what the ever-changing range of services restaurants can now provide to their guests. Creativity and adaptability are at the forefront. We’re doing our level best to keep it upbeat…

Chefs and restaurateurs are honestly the most generous people we know. In times of need they are always the very first in generously giving back and meaningfully supporting their communities. Truly remarkable…Right now restaurants urgently need our support to stay afloat. Kindly keep this in mind and please do what you possibly can (as you can afford) to support a community-focused, local restaurant….

As always, we greatly appreciate you being a part of our loyal listening audience. Truly couldn’t do it without the enthusiastic encouragement of the foodie community.

Founded in 1987 by Chef Zov Karamardian, legendary Zov’s Bistro and Bakery in Tustin, CA has become a culinary institution. Serving her unique cuisine that blends contemporary with Eastern Mediterranean influences, in an upscale chic environment. There are now also Zov’s restaurants in Newport Coast, Irvine and Anaheim. The Tustin and Newport Coast locations are now serving Family Meals and Takeout Menu items curbside. 2nd generation Karamardian Family member, Armen, joins us with the details and looks to the future.

The enduring Casa Vega is a landmark Mexican restaurant that has been operating in the San Fernando Valley for almost 64 years. It’s located on the familiar Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks and is one of the longest running, continuously family-owned restaurants in greater Los Angeles. Rafael “Ray” Vega opened Casa Vega in 1956 after being inspired by the success of his parents’ earlier restaurant, Café Caliente, which was on Olvera St. and operated throughout the 1930’s. Casa Vega has recently reopened for take-out via advance order online or by telephone.

Proprietress Christy Vega pours the Classic Margaritas for us.

Led by chef, author and restaurateur Marcus Samuelsson as national board co-chair, Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP,) celebrating its 30th Anniversary, transforms the lives of underserved high school students and young people locally by helping them pursue their culinary dreams. C-CAP prepares these talented young adults for college, and for careers in the restaurant and hospitality industry. This year Los Angeles awarded $430,131 in scholarships to 34 deserving high school students. Joining us are Food TV’s Chef Monti Carlo (a “Friend of C-CAP”,) college scholarship recipient Emerson Majano, a member of the Senior Class at Santee Education Complex and college scholarship recipient Morena Hernandez, a Senior at Los Angeles High School.

Newport Beach’s highly praised, Fable & Spirit, has reopened in the Via Lido Plaza for takeout service. The public, once again, is able to partake in Chef Executive Chef David Shofner’s imaginative, globally inspired dishes. In addition, Sommelier Ali Coyle presents a curated list of wines offered at exceptional prices, and Director of Spirits Drew Coyle offers a selection of signature cocktails to go. Sommelier & Coyle Family member, Ali, gently pulls the cork for us.

After honing his skills at some of the most influential restaurants in Southern California –including The Eveleigh, Father’s Office, and Umami Restaurant Group—Chef & Proprietor Ted Hopson now brings his diverse experience and curious palate to The Bellwether in Studio City, incorporating Italian, Mediterranean, and Middle Eastern flavors for a culinary spread that proudly crashes borders and challenges convention. His Partner at The Bellwether is Beverage Director Ann-Marie Verdi. At The Bellwether (in normal times,) Verdi creates a beverage program that pleases all palates through both contemporary and classic selections. Chef Ted is our guest to discuss how The Bellwether is coping with the ban on dine-in.

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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Take-out/delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first. 3rd party delivery services seem convenient but they are costly to both consumers and restaurants. A lot more here to explain and better understand. We’ll again “Ask the Chef.”

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

Armen Karamardian of ZovsFounded in 1987 by Chef Zov Karamardian, legendary Zov’s Bistro and Bakery in Tustin, CA has become a culinary institution. Serving her unique cuisine that blends contemporary with Eastern Mediterranean influences, in an upscale, chic environment. There are now also Zov’s restaurants in Newport Coast, Irvine and Anaheim.

The Tustin and Newport Coast locations are serving Family Meals and Takeout Menu items curbside. Zov’s General Store at the Tustin location offers a selection of gourmet groceries for curbside pickup.

“Family support has constantly been Zov’s foundation and inspiration throughout her culinary career. Zov, in addition to her husband, Gary, her son Armen, and her daughter Taleene, have created a rare family business recipe that has taken comforting creations of the family kitchen blended with Chef Zov’s culinary artistry.”

“Over the years, the Bistro in Tustin has greatly expanded into 14,000 sq. ft., encompassing an award-winning bakery, acclaimed Bistro, a luxurious private dining room, specialty foods gourmet market, cooking classes and a busy catering division that brings Zov’s culinary style to homes and special events throughout Southern California.”

2nd Generation Karamardian Family member & restaurateur, Armen, joins us with the details and looks to the future.

Christy Vega of Casa VegaThe enduring Casa Vega is a landmark Mexican restaurant that has been operating in the San Fernando Valley for almost 64 years. It’s located on the familiar Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks and is one of the longest running, continuously family-owned restaurants in greater Los Angeles. Rafael “Ray” Vega opened Casa Vega in 1956 after being inspired by the success of his parents’ earlier restaurant, Café Caliente, which was on Olvera St. and operated throughout the 1930’s. Casa Vega has recently reopened for take-out via advance order online or by telephone.

Casa Vega is now open from 12 Noon – 8 p.m. daily. Initially, guests can order directly by phone (818-788-4868) or online via the Casa Vega website. Guests can pick up from their cars – Casa Vega staff will place orders in the trunk or backseat as they wait in the restaurant’s driveway off Ventura Blvd.

Favorites on the take-out menu include Combination Plates and Street Tacos, both served with rice and beans, Taquitos de Juan (chicken flautas), Burritos, four different Family Trays, Chips, Guacamole, Salsa, Kids Meals, and more. In addition to beer and wine, Casa Vega offers its Classic Margarita in a single serving mason jar with ice, ready to drink for $7. Other margarita variations are available for $7-9. The Classic Margarita is also available in a half gallon size for $30.

“Over the years, Casa Vega has remained, at its core, much the same as my father’s original vision,” says Christy Vega. “The menu continues to reflect the offerings originally presented some 64 years ago with slight alterations that speak to today’s culinary tastes. From the menu, to the dim ambiance of the dining room, to the staff—many of which have been with our team for decades—Casa Vega is a testament to my father and the wonderful history he has created. I look forward to continuing to uphold his legacy of service, authentic traditions, and most of all, the love and adoration that emanates throughout every corner of the restaurant and inspires our clients to return time and time again.

Proprietress Christy Vega pours the Classic Margaritas for us.

The Monti Carlo of Everyday FoodLed by chef, author and restaurateur Marcus Samuelsson as national board co-chair, Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP,) celebrating its 30th Anniversary, transforms the lives of underserved high school students and young people locally by helping them pursue their culinary dreams. C-CAP prepares these talented young adults for college, and for careers in the restaurant and hospitality industry.

This year Los Angeles awarded $430,131 in scholarships to 34 deserving high school students. Joining us is Food TV’s Chef Monti Carlo (a “Friend of C-CAP”) and college scholarship recipients Emerson Majano, a member of the Senior Class at Santee Education Complex and Morena Hernandez, a distinguished Senior at Los Angeles High School.

Founded in 1990 by culinary educator and cookbook author Richard Grausman, C-CAP impacts over 17,500 students a year nationally. Countless C-CAP alumni work throughout the country and are guiding the future leaders of the culinary and hospitality industry.

Sommelier Ali CoyleNewport Beach’s highly praised, Fable & Spirit, has reopened in the Via Lido Plaza for takeout service. The public, once again, is able to partake in Chef Executive Chef David Shofner’s imaginative, globally inspired dishes. In addition, Sommelier Ali Coyle presents a curated list of wines offered at exceptional prices, and Director of Spirits Drew Coyle offers a selection of signature cocktails to go.

Guests will be able to order by phone or online Tuesday through Sunday. Menu, hours and online ordering will be updated on Fable & Spirit’s website. Orders may be placed between Noon and 6 p.m., for pick-up between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. The restaurant will be closed Monday. Contactless curbside pick-up can be requested when placing orders.

“Ours are neighborhood restaurants that have achieved success because of the communities that support them, and we are grateful to reopen to see the reassuring smiles of our friends during this time of uncertainty,” comments Darren Coyle, who owns Fable & Spirit, Dublin 4 Gastropub, and Wineworks for Everyone with his wife, Jean. “We look forward to when we can welcome guests into our dining room again for food, drink and good times, but for now, we will limit service to takeout and strive to share some of the spirit and magic of our family with yours.”

Sommelier & Coyle Family member, Ali, gently pulls the cork for us.

Ann Marie Verdi and Ted Hopson of the Bellwether“After honing his skills at some of the most influential restaurants in Southern California –including The Eveleigh, Father’s Office, and Umami Restaurant Group—Chef & Proprietor Ted Hopson now brings his diverse experience and curious palate to The Bellwether in Studio City, incorporating Italian, Mediterranean, and Middle Eastern flavors for a culinary spread that proudly crashes borders and challenges convention.”

His Partner at The Bellwether is Beverage Director Ann-Marie Verdi. At The Bellwether (in normal times,) Verdi creates a beverage program that pleases all palates through both contemporary and classic selections.

The Bellwether reopened briefly for nighttime curbside pick-up but found it impractical to sustain. Their focus has shifted to preparing wholesome meals for frontline workers and charity groups.

Chef Ted brings us up-to-date.

Chef Andrew Gruel savoring a New Jersey style PizzaOur 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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Take-out / Delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first.

On the surface 3rd party delivery services (Uber Eats, Grubhub, DoorDash and Postmates) seem really convenient but they are costly to both consumers and restaurants. A lot more here to explain and better understand. We’ll again, “Ask the Chef.”

Slapfish is hosting Doctors, Nurses, Medical Personnel, Police, Firefighters & EMT’s to a complimentary meal To-Go. Need to be in uniform or have appropriate ID to qualify. The participating Slapfish locations are Huntington Beach, Brea, Irvine and Laguna Beach.

Kids eat free at Slapfish, too, when their parents order Takeout.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Restaurateur Armen Karamardian, Zov’s Bistro & Bakery
Segment Three: Restaurateur Christy Vega, Casa Vega, Sherman Oaks
Segment Four: Chef Monti Carlo with C-CAP Scholarship Recipient Emerson Majano
Segment Five: Chef Monti Carlo with C-CAP Scholarship Recipient Morena Hernandez
Segment Six: Sommelier Ali Coyle, Fable & Spirit, Newport Beach
Segment Seven: Chef & Partner Ted Hopson, The Bellwether, Studio City
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish with “Ask the Chef”

May 9: Krost CPAs, Mark C. Stevens, El Segundo Brewing Co., Neal Fraser, South Coast Plaza

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Jean Hagan, Principal, Restaurants Operations Consulting for KROST CPA’s & Consultants Part One
Segment Three: Jean Hagan, Principal, Restaurants Operations Consulting for KROST CPA’s & Consultants Part Two
Segment Four: Mark C. Stevens – Spokesperson for Krewe of Red Bean’s Feed the Second Line
Segment Five: Tom Kelley, Certified Cicerone and VP of Sales & Hospitality, El Segundo Brewing Co.
Segment Six: Executive Chef & Proprietor Neal Fraser, Redbird & Vibiana, Los Angeles
Segment Seven: South Coast Plaza’s Dining Options with Lee Healy
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish with “Ask the Chef”

It’s a time of great concern for all of us and our “SoCal Restaurant Show” mission, until the Covid-19 crisis is fully abated, is to provide reliable and genuinely useful information on how the restaurant business is coping with the rapidly evolving events. With an emphasis on the health, safety and well-being of our listeners we’ll be detailing what the ever-changing range of services restaurants can now provide to their guests. Creativity and adaptability are at the forefront. We’re doing our level best to keep it upbeat…

Chefs and restaurateurs are honestly the most generous people we know. In times of need they are always the very first in generously giving back and meaningfully supporting their communities. Truly remarkable…Right now restaurants urgently need our support to stay afloat. Kindly keep this in mind and please do what you possibly can (as you can afford) to support a community-focused, local restaurant….

As always, we greatly appreciate you being a part of our loyal listening audience. Truly couldn’t do it without the enthusiastic encouragement of the foodie community.

“Jean Hagan, Principal of KROST CPAs & Consultants has owned, operated, and consulted in the restaurant industry for more than 30 years. During that time, she worked with a well-known national chain; owned a food and beverage company that operated multiple restaurants, bars, and event spaces in the Squaw Valley area; and became the president, CEO, CFO, and shareholder of one of the highest-grossing restaurants in California. Today Jean is Principal and leads the restaurant operations consulting practice at KROST.” We’ll take an informed look at the future of dining out with Jean.

The Krewe of Redbeans in New Orleans was set to hold their annual “Bean Madness” competition for the fourth straight year when COVID 19 shut down most public gatherings. Restaurants and chefs, used to competing in the tournament for the title of Best Red Beans in the city, were instead facing another challenge: the prospect of shutting down altogether for an indefinite amount of time. Devin De Wulf, organizer of the event and founder of the Krewe of Red Beans, shifted his focus on how to help the struggling restaurants with an assist from his wife, an ER doctor at local University Medical Center. Devin began ordering food for the hospital staff with lingering funds from the cancelled fundraiser. Over the progressive several weeks, based on donations and logistical support from Krewe members, this grew to supporting over 34 restaurants while feeding front line medical workers in all 15 of New Orleans major hospitals. New Orleans food writer and cookbook author Mark C. Stevens joins us with the inspirational details of this grass-roots effort.

Certified Cicerone and raconteur Tom Kelley is the Vice President of Sales and Hospitality for the El Segundo Brewing Co. He misses being in the tasting room and at the ESBC Slice & Pint engaging with guests and discussing the joys of craft beer. Tom has initiated a fun, virtual Happy Hour on Wednesday nights under the banner of Lonely Hearts Pub with guests. Gratuities are politely suggested for Restaurants Care, part of the CRA Foundation. Tom Kelley politely taps the keg for us on the details of Lonely Hearts Pub.

Chef Neal Fraser and Amy Knoll Fraser’s flagship restaurant Redbird features Modern American cuisine that is refined yet approachable and highlights the multi-cultural influences of Fraser’s native city – Los Angeles. Wine Director Josh Wibbenmeyer’s wine list is well rounded with great finds from both established and emerging wine regions throughout the world. Currently Redbird is offering contactless curbside pickup with an a la carte menu and Redbird at Home Family Style Dinner. An added option is Wine Director’s Josh’s Hunker Down Wine List (with 40 per cent off Redbird’s list prices.) Executive Chef Neal Fraser is our guest.

When it comes to restaurant take-out in Orange County don’t forget the numerous appealing and varied restaurant options available at South Coast Plaza. “During these trying times and shelter-at-home, South Coast Plaza restaurants have adapted to take-out and curbside pick-up with success. Thirteen restaurants offer abbreviated and family-style menus ranging from Japanese cuisine (who isn’t craving sushi), prime steaks, contemporary cuisine and more.” South Coast Plaza’s long-time restaurant marketing consultant, Lee Healy, joins us with the specifics.

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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Take-out/delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first. Pizza is always a popular snack and now that we’re cooking more at home it’s time to elevate your pizza game. Growing up in New Jersey Chef Andrew has a special affinity for the savory pie with all the variations. It all starts with the dough. We’ll “Ask the Chef.”

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

Jean Hagan of Krost CPAs and ConsultantsJean Hagan, Principal of KROST CPAs & Consultants has owned, operated, and consulted in the restaurant industry for more than 30 years. During that time, she worked with a well-known national chain; owned a food and beverage company that operated multiple restaurants, bars, and event spaces in the Squaw Valley area; and became the president, CEO, CFO, and shareholder of one of the highest-grossing restaurants in California. Today Jean is Principal and leads the restaurant operations consulting practice at KROST. She is also an Adjunct Professor of Restaurant Operations and Management Strategies at the Culinary Institute of America.

“As discussions about the success of flattening the curve of the pandemic are encouraging everyone that we will get through this eventually, now the page turns to how do we get reopened and get our businesses back up and operating. The first thing everyone has to do is recognize that the restaurant industry after this pandemic is not going to be anywhere close to what we left off in March. Everything is going to be different for a very long time, possibly forever. The restaurant industry is a perfect filter to see all other businesses through. We are a true indicator of the overall economy, consumer confidence, and disposable income figures.”

“The general assumption is that the restaurant industry will not get back to full capacity until a year from now. Assuming that travel will be back to normal by December 2020, we could assume that restaurants will be about 80% of their previous years’ sales by that time. Travel transportation has to get back to normal and travel reservations have to catch up as well; late December 2020 seems like a realistic goal to be at 80% of 2019 sales. We also do not know what the restrictions of the various city and county health departments will be for relaunching, but it is not a stretch to assume that they will want the six feet of separation, meaning that your capacity will be reduced.” – Jean Hagan

We’ll take an informed look at the future of dining out with Jean and receive sound advice on how restaurants should prepare for the return of table service.

Author Mark C. StevensThe Krewe of Redbeans in New Orleans was set to hold their annual “Bean Madness” competition for the fourth straight year when COVID 19 shut down most public gatherings. Restaurants and chefs, used to competing in the tournament for the title of Best Red Beans in the city, were instead facing another challenge: the prospect of shutting down altogether for an indefinite amount of time.

Devin De Wulf, organizer of the event and founder of the Krewe of Red Beans, shifted his focus on how to help the struggling restaurants with an assist from his wife, an ER doctor at local University Medical Center. Using as inspiration the story of how a batch of cookies boosted the morale of her entire department, Devin began ordering food for the hospital staff with lingering funds from the cancelled fundraiser.

Over the progressive several weeks, based on donations and logistical support from Krewe members, this grew to supporting over 34 restaurants while feeding front line medical workers in all 15 of New Orleans major hospitals.

New Orleans food writer and cookbook author Mark C. Stevens joins us with the inspirational details of this grass-roots effort.

Thomas Kelley of El Segundo Brewing and ESBC Slice and PintCertified Cicerone and raconteur Tom Kelley is the Vice President of Sales and Hospitality for the El Segundo Brewing Co. He misses being in the tasting room and at the nearby ESBC Slice & Pint restaurant engaging with guests and discussing the joys of craft beer. Tom has creatively initiated a fun, virtual Happy Hour on Wednesday nights under the banner of Lonely Hearts Pub with special guests. “Gratuities” are politely suggested for Restaurants Care, part of the CRA Foundation.

Greg Bechtel will be joining Tom for the next iteration of the Lonely Hearts Pub – Cicerone style on Wednesday evening, May 13th from 6 to 8:00 p.m..

“Greg was El Segundo’s first official sales rep that I hired, and for a time we were an all Cicerone Certified sales staff. We had the awesome experience of studying for our Advanced Cicerone exams together, and we hope to bring you some beer knowledge.”

“Greg will be selecting a few beers for me, and I for Greg. We will take turns doing a blind tasting of each trying to call out the style in under 3 minutes. Call out the brand and you get extra credit!”

“After that, who knows where the conversation and the drinks may lead us. Though I know Greg has been known to throw a cocktail or two together…”

“Looking forward to sharing some more beers with you all!” – Tom Kelley

Tom Kelley politely taps the keg for us on the details of Lonely Hearts Pub at El Segundo Brewing Co.

Neal and Amy Knoll FraserChef Neal Fraser and Amy Knoll Fraser’s flagship restaurant Redbird in Downtown Los Angeles features Modern American cuisine that is refined yet approachable and highlights the multi-cultural influences of Fraser’s native city – Los Angeles. Wine Director Josh Wibbenmeyer’s wine list is well rounded with great finds from both established and emerging wine regions throughout the world. Currently Redbird is offering contactless curbside pickup with an a la carte menu and Redbird at Home Family Style Dinner. An added option is Wine Director’s Josh’s Hunker Down Wine List (with 40 per cent off Redbird’s list prices.)

Redbird also has been preparing meals for LA Family Housing and raising money for displaced staff.

Executive Chef Neal Fraser is our guest.

Lee Healy representing South Coast PlazaWhen it comes to fashionable restaurant take-out in Orange County don’t forget the numerous appealing and varied restaurant options available at South Coast Plaza. “During these trying times and shelter-at-home, South Coast Plaza restaurants have adapted to take-out and curbside pick-up with success. Thirteen restaurants offer abbreviated and family-style menus ranging from Japanese cuisine (who isn’t craving sushi), prime steaks, contemporary cuisine and more.”

Chef Amar Santana‘s take-out at VACA has been lauded by restaurant critics Bill Addison with the Los Angeles Times and Brad Johnson of the Orange County Register. Their recommendations: Paella Valenciana family-menu with Vaca Tonics to go!  Water Grill has a dazzling pop-up market three days a week (premium seafood and live lobster to prepare at home).  Din Tai Fung has been busy and check out Royal Khyber‘s special three-course curbside menu for two for $30.  Award-winning chef Ross Pangilinan has just begun take-out at TERRACE by Mix Mix.”

South Coast Plaza’s long-time restaurant marketing consultant, Lee Healy, joins us with the specifics.

Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant GroupOur 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 updating us on the impact of the COVID-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Take-out / delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first.

Pizza is always a popular snack and now that we’re cooking more at home it’s time to elevate your pizza game. Growing up in New Jersey Chef Andrew has a special affinity for the pie with all the variations. It all starts with the dough. We’ll “Ask the Chef.”

Slapfish is hosting Doctors, Nurses, Medical Personnel, Police, Firefighters & EMT’s to a complimentary meal To-Go. Need to be in uniform or have appropriate ID to qualify. The participating Slapfish locations are Huntington Beach, Brea, Irvine and Laguna Beach.

Kids eat free at Slapfish, too, when their parents order Takeout.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Jean Hagan, Principal, Restaurants Operations Consulting for KROST CPA’s & Consultants Part One
Segment Three: Jean Hagan, Principal, Restaurants Operations Consulting for KROST CPA’s & Consultants Part Two
Segment Four: Mark C. Stevens – Spokesperson for Krewe of Red Bean’s Feed the Second Line
Segment Five: Tom Kelley, Certified Cicerone and VP of Sales & Hospitality, El Segundo Brewing Co.
Segment Six: Executive Chef & Proprietor Neal Fraser, Redbird & Vibiana, Los Angeles
Segment Seven: South Coast Plaza’s Dining Options with Lee Healy
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish with “Ask the Chef”

May 2: Porto’s Bakery & Cafe, Steve Dolinsky, Zapien’s Salsa Grill, Blinking Owl Distillery, Faith & Flower, Westin Hapuna Beach Resort

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Betty Porto, Vice President of Community and Guest Relations, Porto’s Bakery & Café
Segment Three: Food Journalist Steve Dolinsky, ABC 7 TV’s (Chicago) “Hungry Hound”
Segment Four: Executive Chef & Co-Proprietor Marco Zapien, Zapien’s Salsa Grill
Segment Five: Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”
Segment Six: Robin Christenson, Co-Founder, Blinking Owl Distillery, Santa Ana
Segment Seven: Executive Chef Michael Hung, Faith & Flower, Downtown Los Angeles
Segment Eight: Tom Cross, Hotel Manager, The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort

It’s a time of great concern for all of us and our “SoCal Restaurant Show” mission, until the Covid-19 crisis is fully abated, is to provide reliable and genuinely useful information on how the restaurant business is coping with the rapidly evolving events. With an emphasis on the health, safety and well-being of our listeners we’ll be detailing what the range of services restaurants can now provide to their guests. Creativity and adaptability are at the forefront. We’re doing our level best to keep it upbeat…

Chefs and restaurateurs are honestly the most generous people we know. In times of need they are always the very first in generously giving back and meaningfully supporting their communities. Truly remarkable…Right now restaurants urgently need our support to stay afloat. Kindly keep this in mind and please do what you possibly can (as you can afford) to support a community-focused, local restaurant….

As always, we greatly appreciate you being a part of our loyal listening audience. Truly couldn’t do it without the enthusiastic encouragement of the foodie community.

Porto’s Bakery & Café started modestly in the greater L.A. area in the 1960s and has grown steadily since then becoming a popular, local and revered institution. Founder Rosa Porto’s life took an unexpected turn back at the beginning when she and her family made the difficult decision to leave their beloved Cuba and emigrate to the United States. Out of a job, Rosa relied on her love of baking and began selling cakes out of her house for her neighbors and friends to support her family. Porto’s has gradually grown into five high volume locations in Glendale, Burbank, Downey, Buena Park, and the newly opened West Covina. Porto’s is now open for contactless ordering, payment and curbside pick-up. Betty Porto, Vice President of Community and Guest Relations for Porto’s, is our guest.

Food journalist Steve Dolinsky, ABC 7 TV’s “Hungry Hound” in Chicago, is the recipient of an impressive 13 James Beard Foundation Awards for journalistic excellence. He’s also accomplished in reporting on food and travel in print, radio and podcasting. The James Beard Foundation Awards Gala was scheduled for Chicago at the Lyric Opera on Monday evening, May 4th. It’s now been rescheduled for a to-be-announced date for later in the year. Usually Steve would be sharing his insightful Beard Awards preview with us. Instead he will talk about his informed thoughts on the dining scene in Chicagoland during the health crisis.

Like all restaurants in LA County, Zapien’s Salsa Grill in Pico Rivera is limited to takeout and curbside pick-up options to share its regional Mexican Cuisine with the community. With dine-in service unavailable, Chef Marco Zapien and team are keeping it fun and giving back to the community, while offering some of their classic favorites available for takeout, curbside pick-up and delivery. For over 25 years, The Salsa Grill has been a favorite spot in the Pico Rivera community and beyond and wants to give back. “We want to give back to the community that’s been supporting us for almost 26 years,” said co-owner and Executive Chef, Zapien. We gently pull Chef Marco out of his busy kitchen to talk about all his specials for Cinco de Mayo and Mother’s Day.

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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Take-out/delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first. What about “Code Dates” on fresh & packaged food products? What do they really mean. You certainly don’t want to potentially waste anything or take an unwise chance. We’ll “Ask the Chef.”

The Blinking Owl Distillery in Santa Anna is the very first craft distillery in Orange County. They also are one of the first distilleries in the state of California to hold the Type 74 Craft Distillers License allowing them to operate their tasting room and sell a few bottles of spirits. Blinking Owl crafts Vodka, Gin, several types of Whiskey, and the Scandinavian spirit, Aquavit. “Stay Safely at Home” provisions have necessitated the temporary closing of The Tasting Room. Wanting to continue serving the community and keep their employees on the job Blinking Owl has thoughtfully shifted production to hand sanitizer under the label of Blinking Owl Dirty Bird Hand Sanitizer. So far $25,000 in hand sanitizer has been donated! Joining us from the packaging line for Dirty Bird Hand Sanitizer is Blinking Owl’s Co-founder and Chief Financial Owl, Robin Christenson.

Chef Michael Hung began his culinary career in New York City, where he dropped out of culinary school to do extended stages at acclaimed restaurants Daniel and Aquavit. Michael then followed his heart to San Francisco in 2005 and joined Traci Des Jardins’s James Beard Award-winning team at Jardiniere.  His career continued for nearly a decade in San Francisco, culminating with his appointment as Chef de Cuisine at Roland Passot’s Michelin-starred La Folie. In late-2013, Michael left San Francisco for Los Angeles to open Faith & Flower where he has returned as Executive Chef. Community service in times of need is part of Chef Michael’s makeup. His current ambitious feeding program for those in need is under the banner of Donate to Feed L.A.’s Homeless and Underserved. Chef Michael takes a break from the kitchen and joins us with the details.

This is the Weekend we were scheduled to again be broadcasting live from the 9th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival at The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort on Hawaii Island’s Kohala Coast. With the ongoing health crisis the Festival hopes to be rescheduled for August 14th & 15th if it’s safe to do so. Tom Cross is the welcoming Hotel Manager at The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort and joins us with the good news that the property will again welcome guests on June 1st

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

Betty Porto in front of the Porto's Bakery Bread RackPorto’s Bakery & Café started modestly in the greater L.A. area in the 1960s and has grown steadily since then becoming a popular, local and revered institution. Founder Rosa Porto’s life took an unexpected turn back at the beginning when she and her family made the difficult decision to leave their beloved Cuba and emigrate to the United States. Out of a job, Rosa relied on her love of baking and began selling cakes out of her house for her neighbors and friends to support her family. Porto’s has gradually grown into five high-volume locations in Glendale, Burbank, Downey, Buena Park, and the newly opened West Covina. Porto’s is now open for contactless ordering, payment and curbside pick-up. Betty Porto, Vice President of Community and Guest Relations for Porto’s, is our guest.

Steve Dolinsky and Andreew GruelAccomplished food journalist Steve Dolinsky, ABC 7 TV’s “Hungry Hound” in Chicago, is the recipient of an impressive 13 James Beard Foundation Awards for journalistic excellence. He’s also accomplished in reporting on food and travel in print, radio and podcasting. The James Beard Foundation Awards Gala was scheduled for Chicago at the Lyric Opera on Monday evening, May 4th. It’s now been rescheduled for an unannounced (as yet) date later in the year.

Usually Steve would be sharing his engaging Beard Awards preview with us. Instead he will talk about his informed thoughts on the dining scene in Chicagoland during the health crisis and what the future may hold.

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and TaqueriaLike all restaurants in LA County, Zapien’s Salsa Grill in Pico Rivera is limited to takeout and curbside pick-up options to share its regional Mexican Cuisine with the community. With dine-in service unavailable, Chef Marco Zapien and team are keeping it fun and giving back to the community, while offering some of their classic favorites available for takeout, curbside pick-up and delivery.

The most popular special so far is a family meal pack that feeds 4-6 and includes a salad, choice of entrée (Chile Verde, Chile Colorado, Chicharron, Carnitas or Chicken Fajitas), rice, beans, chips, salsa, Tortillas and soft drinks. Plus, anyone who orders this takeout/pick-up special will get 2 pounds of uncooked rice and beans and two rolls of toilet paper, all for only $39.99.

Chef Zapien’s creative giving doesn’t stop there. He’s helping out families with kids with $3 individual kids’ pizzas with the purchase of any entrée. Even more, all entrees come with a free soft drink or coffee.

Recently, Chef Zapien introduced the Corona Survival Kit, including two frozen packs of menudo or pozole, a six pack of beer of choice, two mini (Agave Tequila) shot bottles, one 2-pound bag of uncooked beans, one 2-pound bag of uncooked rice and two rolls of toilet paper.

For over 25 years, The Salsa Grill has been a favorite spot in the Pico Rivera community and beyond and wants to give back. “We want to give back to the community that’s been supporting us for almost 26 years,” said co-owner and Executive Chef, Zapien.

We gently pull Chef Marco out of his busy kitchen to talk about all his specials for Cinco de Mayo and Mother’s Day.

Andy Harris and Andrew Gruel at Cabana 14 at the Cove at Pechanga Resort and CasinoOur 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 updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Take-out/delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first.

What about those confusing “Code Dates” or “Use By Dates” on fresh & packaged food products. What do they really mean? You certainly don’t want to potentially waste anything right now that’s safely edible. We’ll “Ask the Chef.”

Robin Christenson of Blinking Owl Distillery with her Hand SanitzerThe Blinking Owl Distillery in Santa Ana is the very first craft distillery in Orange County. They also are one of the first distilleries in the state of California to hold the Type 74 Craft Distillers License allowing them to operate their tasting room and sell a few bottles of spirits. Blinking Owl crafts Vodka, Gin, several types of Whiskey, and the Scandinavian spirit, Aquavit.

“Stay Safely at Home” provisions have necessitated the temporary closing of The Tasting Room. Wanting to continue serving the community and keep their employees on the job Blinking Owl has thoughtfully shifted production to hand sanitizer (licensed) under the label of Blinking Owl Dirty Bird Hand Sanitizer. So far $25,000 in hand sanitizer has been generously donated!

Spirits are still available by ordering online.

Joining us from the packaging line for Dirty Bird Hand Sanitizer is Blinking Owl’s Co-founder and Chief Financial Owl, Robin Christenson.

Michael Hung of Faith and FlowerChef Michael Hung began his culinary career in New York City, where he dropped out of culinary school to do extended stages at acclaimed restaurants Daniel and Aquavit. Michael then followed his heart to San Francisco in 2005 and joined Traci Des Jardins’s James Beard Award-winning team at Jardiniere.  His career continued for nearly a decade in San Francisco, culminating with his appointment as Chef de Cuisine at Roland Passot’s Michelin-starred La Folie. In late-2013, Michael left San Francisco for Los Angeles to open Faith & Flower where he has returned as Executive Chef.

Community service in times of need is part of Chef Michael’s makeup. His current ambitious feeding program for those in need is under the banner of Donate to Feed L.A.’s Homeless and Underserved. Chef Michael takes a break from the kitchen and joins us with the critical details.

Tom Cross of the Westin Hapuna Beach ResortThis is the Weekend we were scheduled to again be broadcasting live from the 9th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival at The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort on Hawaii Island’s Kohala Coast. With the current health crisis still ongoing the Festival hopes to be rescheduled for August 14th & 15th if it’s safe to do so. Tom Cross is the welcoming Hotel Manager at The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort and joins us with the good news that the property will again be welcoming guests on June 1st.

The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort completed an ambitious $50 million renovation last year. It’s part of the renown Mauna Kea Resort on the Island of Hawaii.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Betty Porto, Vice President of Community and Guest Relations, Porto’s Bakery & Café
Segment Three: Food Journalist Steve Dolinsky, ABC 7 TV’s (Chicago) “Hungry Hound”
Segment Four: Executive Chef & Co-Proprietor Marco Zapien, Zapien’s Salsa Grill
Segment Five: Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”
Segment Six: Robin Christenson, Co-Founder, Blinking Owl Distillery, Santa Ana
Segment Seven: Executive Chef Michael Hung, Faith & Flower, Downtown Los Angeles
Segment Eight: Tom Cross, Hotel Manager, The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort