Show 361, February 22, 2020: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

Now a salivating preview of Saturday’s mouthwatering show. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will hopefully leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a pretty good thing… As always, we greatly appreciate you being a part of our loyal listening audience. Truly couldn’t do it without you.

Tom Bergin’s located on S. Fairfax Avenue in Los Angeles (just south of Wilshire Blvd) is a landmarked institution. Also famous as the “House of Irish Coffee.” Opened in 1936 it holds one of the area’s longest continuously running liquor licenses. It’s had its ups and downs since the 2nd owner in its long history sold the establishment in 2011. Most recently it was threatened with certain demolition but the new, astute property owners listened to the outpouring of community support and has reopened it under the culinary guidance of Chef Erik Punzalan (ex-Firefly.) We’ll meet him.

El Segundo Brewing Company’s The Slice & Pint is the restaurant spinoff of the successful El Segundo Brewing Company, one of the first craft brewers in the South Bay. They just celebrated their year anniversary. On the menu are a variety of pizzas (by-the-slice, too) created from a dough that ferments and proofs for multiple days, and creative salads and sandwiches. Chef Matt Ranney was previously at Village Idiot. Proprietor Rob Croxall and Chef Matt Ranney join us to celebrate the year anniversary with a slice and pint (maybe some wings, too?).

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group joins us with another informative “Ask the Chef” segment where we respond to significant listeners’ inquiries. Cashless restaurants are around but don’t seem to be gaining momentum and support locally. Is it hospitable to refuse cash? We’re also reeling-in what extra ingredients go into making the ultimate Tuna Melt. We’ll “Ask the Chef.”

Lenné Estate grows distinctive Pinot Noir vines in the Yamhill-Carlton AVA. Owner Steve Lutz began his wine career in Napa Valley, working cellars and managing tasting rooms for the Mondavis and Bill Harlan in the 1980s. He and his English wife Karen moved to Oregon in 1998, and began scouting vineyard sites after Karen inherited some money from her father Lenny, for whom the winery is named. Steve knew instantly when he had found the right site—poor soils and south-facing hillsides at 420-575 feet elevation are ideal for world-class Oregon Pinot Noir—and he planted his first vines in 2001. Six long years later, the vineyard finally achieved a normal fruit set, and Steve opened a tasting room on site.” Owner/Winemaker Steve Lutz pulls the cork on Lenne’ Estate for us.

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness on this week’s not-to-miss show!

Play

Show 361, February 22, 2020: Tom Bergin’s, Los Angeles – Executive Chef Erik Punzalan – Part One

Erik Punzalan of Tom BerginsTom Bergin’s located on S. Fairfax Avenue in Los Angeles (just south of Wilshire Blvd) is a landmarked institution. Also famous as the “House of Irish Coffee.” Opened in 1936 it holds one of the area’s longest continuously running liquor licenses. It even has its own parking lot – a true, but convenient, rarity in Los Angeles these days.

It’s had its ups and downs since the 2nd owner in its long history sold the establishment in 2011. Last year it was threatened with certain demolition but the new, astute property owners listened to the outpouring of community support and has reopened it under the culinary guidance of Chef Erik Punzalan (ex-Firefly.) We’ll meet him.

Tom Bergin’s is also known for the shamrocks (inscribed with names) covering most walls and the ceiling. The shamrocks, over the years, were awarded to loyal customers. Of course, many celebrities from Hollywood and professional sports are among the recipients of a coveted shamrock.

Play

Show 361, February 22, 2020: Tom Bergin’s, Los Angeles – Executive Chef Erik Punzalan – Part Two

Erik Punzalan of Tom BerginsTom Bergin’s located on S. Fairfax Avenue in Los Angeles (just south of Wilshire Blvd) is a landmarked institution. Also famous as the “House of Irish Coffee.” Opened in 1936 it holds one of the area’s longest continuously running liquor licenses. It even has its own parking lot – a true, but convenient, rarity in Los Angeles these days.

It’s had its ups and downs since the 2nd owner in its long history sold the establishment in 2011. Last year it was threatened with certain demolition but the new, astute property owners listened to the outpouring of community support and has reopened it under the culinary guidance of Chef Erik Punzalan (ex-Firefly.)

As of March 1st it’s Dinner Wednesday thru Sunday (closed on Monday & Tuesday) and opening @ 11:00 a.m. on Sunday for Brunch and then serving continuously until 1:00 a.m. To streamline service guests order at the oval bar and a server efficiently brings your meal to you.

The food is elevated Irish pub food that is both tasty and fairly priced. A generous portion of Shepherd’s Pie (short rib, seasonal veggies, Reggiano, mashed potatoes and gravy) goes for $14. A standout dessert is the Dutch Apple Pie (baked in-house) with housemade Bailey’s Ice Cream.

Of course the ample bar is well stocked with Irish Whiskey, Scotch, Bourbon & American Whiskey, Rye Whiskey, Tequila, Gin and Rum. For something different in a cocktail try the Paloma. It’s Altos Blanco or Del Maguey Vida Mezcal, grapefruit bitters, grapefruit soda and Tajin rim.

We continue our conversation with Chef Erik Punzalan.

Play

Show 361, February 22, 2020: ESBC – The Slice & Pint, El Segundo Part One

Rob Croxall of El Segundo Brewing CompanyEl Segundo Brewing Company’s The Slice & Pint is the restaurant spinoff of the successful El Segundo Brewing Company, one of the first craft brewers in the South Bay. They just celebrated their year anniversary. On the menu are a variety of appealing pizzas created from a dough that ferments and proofs for multiple days, and salads and sandwiches. In addition to whole pizza options there is a daily changing selection of 5 varieties by-the-slice. There is even a 12” pizza option that has a gluten-free cauliflower crust.

A house specialty is chicken wings with a flair. The wings are fried and tossed with a choice of buffalo sauce, pesto, CA Rancher Hog Wild BBQ Sauce or Santa Maria Dry Rub. The wings are served with the expected (housemade) blue cheese or ranch dressing.

Chef Matt Ranney was previously at Village Idiot.

Proprietor Rob Croxall and Chef Matt Ranney join us to celebrate the year anniversary.

Play

Show 361, February 22, 2020: ESBC – The Slice & Pint, El Segundo Part Two

Matt Ranney of El Segundo Brewing Conpany and the Slice and PintEl Segundo Brewing Company’s The Slice & Pint is the restaurant spinoff of the successful El Segundo Brewing Company, one of the first craft brewers in the South Bay. They just celebrated their year anniversary. On the menu are a variety of appealing pizzas created from a dough that ferments and proofs for multiple days, and salads and sandwiches. In addition to whole pizza options there is a daily changing selection of 5 varieties by-the-slice. There is even a 12” pizza option that has a gluten-free cauliflower crust.

“The Slice & Pint is locally focused and environmentally responsible. We partner with vendors who share the same values. We support local, independent farmers for our produce whenever possible. If we can make it in house, we’re going to…simple as that.”

The Slice & Pint is proud to partner with these local providers:

Coleman NaturalNiman Ranch • Petaluma Farms • Grande CheeseEzzo Pepperoni King Arthur FlourStanislaus TomatoesCreekstone FarmsBeyond MeatMama Lil’s Pickled PeppersCalifornia RancherMcConnell’s Ice Cream

Let’s not forget the styles of El Segundo Brewing Co’s award-wining craft beers available. On any given day there are a dozen selections available on tap including Broken Skull IPA. Also a full menu of rotating guest craft beers on rap.

“Hop forward beers make up an overwhelming portion of what we do at El Segundo Brewing Co. Mostly because that’s what we want to drink. Our beers showcase the best of what the industrious and creative growers around the world have accomplished in the past few decades. Hop varieties like Citra, Mosaic, Nelson, Simcoe to name a few. Amazing aromas of citrus, pine, tropical fruits, and just dankness explode out of the glass when these beers are young.”

Proprietor Rob Croxall and Chef Matt Ranney continue with us…

Play

Show 361, February 22, 2020: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel with “Ask the Chef”

Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group at the AM830 KLAA StudiosOur own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group joins us with another informative “Ask the Chef” segment where we respond to listeners’ inquiries. Cashless restaurants are around but don’t seem to be going momentum locally. Is it hospitable to refuse cash?

We’re also reeling-in what bonus ingredients go into making the ultimate Tuna Melt. Does lettuce really have any place in this sandwich?

Play

Show 361, February 22, 2020: Winemaker & Proprietor Steve Lutz, Lenné Estate, Yamhill, Oregon Part One

Steve Lutz of Lenne EstateLenné Estate grows distinctive Pinot Noir vines in the Yamhill-Carlton AVA. Owner Steve Lutz began his wine career in Napa Valley, working cellars and managing tasting rooms for the Mondavis and Bill Harlan in the 1980s. He and his English wife Karen moved to Oregon in 1998, and began scouting vineyard sites after Karen inherited some money from her father Lenny, for whom the winery is named. Steve knew instantly when he had found the right site—poor soils and south-facing hillsides at 420-575 feet elevation are ideal for world-class Oregon Pinot Noir—and he planted his first vines in 2001. Six long years later, the vineyard finally achieved a normal fruit set, and Steve opened a tasting room on site.”

“Lutz is fond of boasting that his steep, 20.9-acre hillside vineyard has the poorest soil in Yamhill County—the ancient, nutrient-poor Peavine variety, which limits vine vigor and forces the plants to root deep into the earth and struggle for survival. Thousands have died, but the carnage is worth it; the dry-farmed vines that do survive produce small, naturally concentrated berries that yield distinct mocha aromatics, and rich mid-palate texture. The estate is planted to five clones of Pinot Noir (Pommard, 777, 115, 114, and 667), ranging in age from 13-16 years.”

A pair of Estate Chardonnays (classic in the Oregon style) were added in 2017.

Steve Lutz pulls the cork on Lenne Estate for us.

 

Play

Show 361, February 22, 2020: Winemaker & Proprietor Steve Lutz, Lenné Estate, Yamhill, Oregon Part Two

Steve Lutz of Lenne EstateLenné Estate grows distinctive Pinot Noir vines in the Yamhill-Carlton AVA. Owner Steve Lutz began his wine career in Napa Valley, working cellars and managing tasting rooms for the Mondavis and Bill Harlan in the 1980s. He and his English wife Karen moved to Oregon in 1998, and began scouting vineyard sites after Karen inherited some money from her father Lenny, for whom the winery is named. Steve knew instantly when he had found the right site—poor soils and south-facing hillsides at 420-575 feet elevation are ideal for world-class Oregon Pinot Noir—and he planted his first vines in 2001. Six long years later, the vineyard finally achieved a normal fruit set, and Steve opened a tasting room on site.”

“Steve Lutz crafts the Lenné Estate wines with a minimalist’s restraint, seeking to showcase the vineyard’s unique terroir. Minimal oxidation, no centrifugal pumping, and only 11 months in a maximum of 35% new oak allow him to get the wines into the bottle as intact as possible.”

“Lenné produces Pinot Noir under three labels: Le Nez (representing the estate vineyard), Lenné cinq élus (a blend of the best barrel from each of the five clones), and Lenné Estate, which includes a barrel selection of the best wine from the estate, as well as clone-specific bottlings—Karen Pommard (named for Steve’s wife), Jill’s 115 (named for Karen’s mother), Eleanor’s 114 (named for Steve’s mother), and Kill Hill (a blend of 114 and 667 from the hillside with the highest vine mortality rate).

A pair of Estate Chardonnays (classic in the Oregon style) were added in 2017.

Total annual production is 1500-2000 cases.”

We continue our conversation with Proprietor/Winemaker Steve Lutz.

Play

Show 360, February 15, 2020: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

Now a decadent preview of Saturday’s tantalizing show. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will hopefully leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a pretty good thing… As always, we greatly appreciate you being a part of our loyal listening audience. Truly couldn’t do it without you.

Inspired by the spirit of legendary bar woman Ada Coleman of the Savoy Hotel, Ada’s (Las Vegas) is driven by the idea that hospitality begins with offering every guest the best ingredients, preparation, and service possible. With Italian-inspired fresh pastas, artisanal American style pizza, seafood, meat and vegan selections at lunch, dinner and weekend brunch, Ada’s offers the best quality version of “something for everyone” in an elegant but casual setting amongst the Italianate streets of Las Vegas’ Tivoli Village. The Ada’s team is led by Chef/Owner James Trees (Esther’s Kitchen), who is our guest.

Powell & Son wines are sourced from various vineyard sites throughout Australia’s the Barossa and Eden Valleys. Dave and Callum Powell (father and son) employ traditional, minimalist winemaking techniques to produce a wine that speaks of the place that it was grown. Their inspiration for winemaking having its roots in France’s Rhone Valley, Powell & Son red wines are made from the classic Rhone varietals: Shiraz, Grenache and Mataro and its whites: Roussanne, Marsanne as well as Eden Valley Riesling. Dave Powell joins us to gently pull the cork on Powell & Son for us.

Leah Spielberg Adler was a fixture of the Pico-Robertson neighborhood (The Borscht Belt) in Los Angeles since 1977 until her passing in early 2017 at 97. She was the proprietress and heart of the kosher dairy restaurant, The Milky Way. In a loving tribute to her memory The Spielberg Family (Steven, Nancy, Anne and Sue) reimagined and reopened The Milky Way in February of 2019 with a new look and an updated, appealing and streamlined kosher menu. Sunday Brunch was then added right before Mother’s Day 2019. Executive Chef & Restaurant Consultant Phil Kastel of PK+J Hospitality Group is the Creative Chef at The Milky Way and is our guest for the update.

Valentine’s Day is a particularly difficult Holiday for restaurants to manage. Expectations are high on the part of couples and it’s all tables of two who want to linger. What are the operational and food preparation challenges of Valentine’s Day from the restaurant’s perspective? Executive Producer Andy Harris (who has a background in restaurant operations) talks about this with the show’s Producer/Engineer/Board Operator Aaron Fry who moonlights as a proficient bartender and server. Valentine’s Day extends into the Weekend this year.

It’s definitely time with the new year and decade for another effervescent installment of “Ask the Brewers” where we answer listeners’ intriguing questions about craft beer. There are finally some decent non-alcoholic beers on the market. How do you brew a premium non-alcoholic beer? Joining us with all the needed intel is Golden Road’s uber-accomplished Brewmaster, Victor Novak, and Anaheim Head Brewer Steven Torres.

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness on this week’s not-to-miss show!

Play

Show 360, February 15, 2020: Executive Chef & Restaurateur James Trees – Las Vegas’ Ada’s and Esther’s Kitchen

James Trees of Ada's and Esthers Kitchen in Las VegasInspired by the spirit of legendary bar woman Ada Coleman of the Savoy Hotel, Ada’s (Las Vegas) is driven by the idea that hospitality begins with offering every guest the best ingredients, preparation, and service possible. With Italian-inspired fresh pastas, artisanal American style pizza, seafood, meat and vegan selections at lunch, dinner and weekend brunch, Ada’s offers the best quality version of “something for everyone” in an elegant but casual setting amongst the Italianate streets of Las Vegas’ Tivoli Village.

The Ada’s team is led by Chef/Owner James Trees, General Manager Sonia Stelea and Chef de Cuisine Dylan Jobsz.

Chef James original restaurant in Las Vegas is Esther’s Kitchen in the Downtown Arts District. He likes to describe it as “Seasonal Italian Soul Food.” Trees’ Great-aunt Esther (the namesake for the restaurant) was a tough, smart, no-nonsense type who cared about people and gave good advice. “She was a big support to my mom when I was growing up, and that was huge,” says Trees. “She was always there for us.”

Chef James is also one of the organizers of Vegas Unstripped, which is an energetic, locals’ food festival of impressive, off-the-Strip, chef-driven independent restaurants. It’s Saturday evening, May 2nd this year in Downtown Las Vegas.

We pull Chef James (also Esther’s Kitchen) away from his busy Ada’s kitchen Brunch line for a chat.

Play