October 1: Holland Dougherty, West Coast Prime Meats, Mad Hungry Woman, Jason Montelibano, Richard Foss, Terri Henry

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: James Beard Foundation National Scholars Program recipient, Holland Dougherty
Segment Three: The “Meatheads” from West Coast Prime Meats – Aging Beef
Segment Four: Anita Lau, Mad Hungry Woman blogger
Segment Five: Executive Chef Jason Montelibano, Chapter One – The Modern Local
Segment Six: Pacific Food & Beverage Museum’s “The Thoughtful Feast: A California Whiskey Dinner”
Segment Seven: Terri Henry, Founder, Dine LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week

Please join us at the special time of 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. only for this Saturday, October 1st. We’re back to our usual broadcast time of 10:00 a.m. to 12 Noon on October 8th.

In August the James Beard Foundation announced the ten inaugural recipients of the JBF National Scholars Program. We’ll meet the West recipient of the National Scholars Program, Holland Dougherty, who is at University of California, Davis.

We’re hearing a lot from high-end steakhouses talking about premium aged beef. There is even a butcher shop/restaurant locally highlighting a burger with a 100-day dry-aged beef patty. What should we know about aging beef ? Joining us to chat about aging beef are the “Meatheads” from West Coast Prime Meats, Jay Henderson and Terry Hanks. They have over 50-years of combined, hands-on experience in the business! 

The Mad Hungry Woman blogger, Anita Lau, joins us with a gem of a San Diego County dining discovery in Del Mar. Earlier in his career the chef was part of the opening team at Marche Moderne in South Coast Plaza as well as Charlie Palmer’s at Bloomingdales in South Coast Plaza.

Our friend and colleague, Anne Marie Panoringan (OC Weekly’s blog), was the first journalist to break the story (August 30th) that Executive Chef Jason Montelibano was departing EATS Kitchen at Hotel Irvine to return to Chapter One: The Modern Local in Santa Ana. Time to catch-up with Chef Jason (a.k.a. Chef Chicken Wing.)

Our colleagues at Pacific Food & Beverage Museum and The Museum of the American Cocktail (MOTAC) are at it again. There’s a lot of interest in fine whiskey here IN California, but do you know about the fine whiskeys FROM California? And you probably haven’t had the chance to experience the range for yourself, but with the latest edition of “The Thoughtful Feast : A California Whiskey Dinner,” all that’s changed. PacFAB’s Philip Dobard uncorks the flask for us on this one.

Organizers of Dine LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week recently announced the upcoming sale of the Dine LBC “Long Beach Kitchen Ink” 2017 Calendar featuring stunning photos of 13 Long Beach chefs and one local urban farm owner for each of twelve months plus front and back covers. Calendar sales benefit Dine LBC Originals Marketing Fund that provides marketing and public relations support to participating independently owned restaurants year-round. Dine LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week founder, Terri Henry, is our guest.

All of this and lots more absolutely incredible deliciousness on Saturday’s show!

Holland DoughertyIn August the James Beard Foundation announced the ten inaugural recipients of the JBF National Scholars Program. We’ll meet the West recipient of the National Scholars Program, Holland Dougherty, who is at University of California, Davis. She is a PhD Candidate in the Sustainable Agricultural Modeling Lab.

“We are proud that our Foundation’s newest scholarship program is committed to awarding $20,000 in financial aid to ten extraordinary scholars each year. A desire to pursue a career in the culinary arts is no longer limited to cooking in the kitchen,” said Kris Moon, vice president of the James Beard Foundation. “Just as the types of careers available in the culinary arts have evolved, so too is the Foundation’s scholarship program. The National Scholars Program supports a diverse group of students exploring virtually every educational discipline, whether that be history, anthropology, economics, management, or the sciences—as viewed through the lens of food.”

This year, and in each subsequent year, up to ten annual scholarships in the amount of $20,000 each will be granted. To ensure regional diversity, one awardee is selected from each of the ten geographic regions defined by the James Beard Foundation Awards.

The JBF National Scholars Program is a part of the larger James Beard Foundation Scholarship Program, which is awarding more than $750,000 in financial aid available in 2016, the largest annual total in the Foundation’s history.

Established in 1991, the scholarship program assists aspiring and established culinary professionals who plan to further their education at a licensed or accredited culinary school or hospitality institution, college, or university. In the past 25 years, the program has not only grown in visibility and financial scope, but in the breadth of subjects its recipients have embraced. As of 2016, the Foundation will have awarded over $6.5 million in financial aid to more than 1,800 recipients.

Belcampo 100 Day Dry Aged BurgerWe’re hearing a lot from high-end steakhouses talking about premium, aged beef. There is even a butcher shop/restaurant locally highlighting a burger with a 100-day dry-aged beef patty. What should we know about aging beef?

How does aging improve the flavor or texture of beef? There is wet aging and dry aging. Is a prime streak aged 35-days really better than a cut which was only aged 7-days ? Is long aging really better? Our meat experts will explain all…

Joining us to chat about aging beef are the Meatheads from West Coast Prime Meats, Jay Henderson and Terry Hanks. They have over 50-years of combined, hands-on experience in the business!

Anita Lau of Mad Hungry WomanThe Mad Hungry Woman blogger, Anita Lau, joins us with a gem of a San Diego County dining discovery in Del Mar. Earlier in his career the chef there was part of the opening team at both Marche Moderne in South Coast Plaza as well as Charlie Palmer’s at Bloomingdales in South Coast Plaza.

Anita will also share her first impressions of the long-in-the-works El Mercado Modern Cuisine in Santa Ana. This is a new concept from the chef/proprietor of the highly regarded Anepalco.

Jason MontelibanoOur friend and colleague, Anne Marie Panoringan (OC Weekly’s blog), was the first journalist to break the story (August 30th) that Executive Chef Jason Montelibano was departing EATS Kitchen at Hotel Irvine to return to Chapter One: The Modern Local in Santa Ana. Time to catch-up with Chef Jason (a.k.a. Chef Chicken Wing.)

From Anne Marie’s OC Weekly “Stick a Fork in It” blog post:

“I have had such a positive experience with EATS, Hotel Irvine and the Irvine Company over the last two years. And while I’ve learned so much and grown in this time, I’m very excited to return to Chapter One: the modern local, in Santa Ana to continue my career in an environment of creativity and collaboration. As always, I’m eternally grateful to those who’ve supported me every step of the way, and I look forward to what the future brings.” – Chef Jason Montelibano

Richard FossOur colleagues at The Museum of the American Cocktail (MOTAC) are at it again. There’s a lot of interest in fine whiskey here IN California, but do you know about the fine whiskeys FROM California? Though the state’s been producing whiskey since at least the 1860s, there’s never been such a selection of styles at such high quality as there is now. And you probably haven’t had the chance to experience the range for yourself, but with the latest edition of “The Thoughtful Feast: A California Whiskey Dinner,” all that’s changed.

On October 11, the Pacific Food & Beverage Museum (PacFAB), in collaboration with Women Who Whiskey – Los Angeles, will host a dinner featuring five highly distinctive styles of California whiskey, each paired with a sumptuous dish from the kitchen of 1212 Santa Monica, the newest culinary star on Santa Monica’s Third Street Promenade. Diners will enjoy the five whiskeys listed below, both neat and cocktailed, and a diverse five-course menu featuring lamb, pork belly, roasted root vegetables, and much more.

A portion of all proceeds support the National Food & Beverage Foundation (NatFAB), home of PacFAB, The Museum of the American Cocktail, and the Southern Food & Beverage Museum.

Dinner is $85 for all NatFAB, Women Who Whiskey, and Culinary Historians of Southern California members, or $95 for non-members, and includes tax and gratuity. NatFAB membership is available to all right here. Space is limited to 50 diners and reservations are required. Visit their website for more information and to purchase tickets now.

1212 Santa Monica is located at 1212 Third Street Promenade, Santa Monica, CA 90401.

Featured Whiskeys

Long Beach Kitchen Ink CalendarOrganizers of Dine LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week recently announced the upcoming sale of the Dine LBC Long Beach Kitchen Ink 2017 Calendar featuring stunning photos of 13 Long Beach chefs and one local urban farm owner for each of twelve months plus front and back covers. Calendar sales benefit Dine LBC Originals Marketing Fund that provides marketing and public relations support to participating independently owned restaurants year-round.

Dine LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week founder Terri Henry conceived the idea after seeing “Kitchen Ink” editorial feature in an Orange County publication several years ago. She was looking to bring the concept to Long Beach but wanted to put a unique spin on it, hence the calendar idea was born.

“We wanted to produce a unique promotional piece that showcases the individual personalities of the culinary talent here, which in so many cases include body ink,” said Henry. “The calendar is our way of paying homage to those behind the scenes of our delicious dining experiences in Long Beach.”

More than just a one-time editorial feature, the calendar is a high quality promotional piece and expected to warrant a keepsake status beyond its 12 months. Based on the enthusiasm from the featured chefs, Henry expects it become an annual project.

Dine LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week founder, Terri Henry, is our guest.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: James Beard Foundation National Scholars Program recipient, Holland Dougherty
Segment Three: The “Meatheads” from West Coast Prime Meats – Aging Beef
Segment Four: Anita Lau, Mad Hungry Woman blogger
Segment Five: Executive Chef Jason Montelibano, Chapter One – The Modern Local
Segment Six: Pacific Food & Beverage Museum’s “The Thoughtful Feast: A California Whiskey Dinner”
Segment Seven: Terri Henry, Founder, Dine LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week

Show 126, June 13, 2015: Show Preview with Chef Andrew Gruel and Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

Andrew GruelExecutive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, and, now, Newport Beach is back as today’s special Guest Host.

Now a delectable preview of Saturday’s fully-leaded show.

Greenbar Craft Distillery located in Downtown Los Angeles represents the world’s largest portfolio of organic, handcrafted spirits, including BAR KEEP organic bitters, CRUSOE organic rums, FRUITLAB organic liquers, IXA organic tequila, SLOW HAND organic whiskey, TRU organic gin and TRU organic vodkas. It’s the first new distillery located in Los Angeles since the repeal of Prohibition. Co-Founder Litty Mathew joins us with the spirited background.

Catch & Release, newly opened in Marina del Rey in the previous Paiche space, is an ode to New England seafood with California inspiration from Chef/Partner Jason Neroni (exSuperba Snack Bar in Venice.) It’s a partnership with restaurateur Bill Chait’s Sprout L.A. Chef Neroni’s memories of Maine summers and precious time bonding over food with family led to the conception of Catch & Release. He’s our guest.

Beverly Hills is one of the toughest, and most unforgiving, markets for sophisticated dining in Los Angeles County. It’s hard to imagine thinking about quality Italian cuisine in Beverly Hills without mentioning il Pastaio, the celebrated Italian restaurant in the city’s center. For 21 years now, il Pastaio has served as an important gathering spot for locals as well as a place for celebrities to be seen. And for all of these years, one man has run the kitchen with an extraordinary eye for detail : Owner/Chef Giacomino Drago.

The soon-to-be-discovered Lodi Wine Country is one of California’s major winegrowing regions. It’s located 100 miles east of San Francisco near the San Joaquin/Sacramento River Delta, south of Sacramento and west of the Sierra Nevada mountain range. Lodi is characterized by rural atmosphere where wineries and farms run by 4th and 5th generation families operate in tandem with a new group of vintners who have brought creative winemaking and cutting–edge technology to the region.

Camron King, the Executive Director of the Lodi Winegrape Commission, joins us with all the exciting 411.

Chef Akasha Richmond is one of the pioneers in destination dining in Culver City with Akasha which she debuted in 2008. Now she has launched her second restaurant in Culver City, Sambar, which is located steps away from Akasha. It’s inspired by her travels throughout India as well as her affinity for the rich culture and traditions of the country. Sambar showcases the diversity of Indian cuisine with an invigorating array of clean, bright flavors and choices – all inflected with familiar ingredients as interpreted through a California lens. Chef Akasha Richmond is our guest.

Don’t miss Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel’s new restaurant makeover series, “Say It To My Face” on FYI. An original episode is aired every Thursday evening with an encore episode thereafter. Check your local listings. On-line food reviewers confront restaurateurs with the shortcomings of their establishments. It’s then up to Chef Andrew and his colleague, Chef Anthony Dispensa, to coach the chef and restaurateur to achieve a much higher level of guest satisfaction when the on-line reviews return for another look! Sometimes it’s tough-love…

All of this and lots more absolutely incredible deliciousness on Saturday’s show!

Play

Show 126, June 13, 2015: Chef Akasha Richmond, Sambar, Culver City

Akasha RichmondChef Akasha Richmond is one of the pioneers in destination dining in Downtown Culver City with Akasha which she debuted in 2008. Now she has launched her second restaurant in Culver City, Sambar, which is located steps away from Akasha.

It’s inspired by her travels throughout India as well as her affinity for the rich culture and traditions of the country. Sambar showcases the diversity of Indian cuisine with an invigorating array of clean, bright flavors and choices – all inflected with familiar ingredients as interpreted through a California lens.

The concept takes its name from a traditional Indian based vegetable stew that is a staple in most South Indian homes. It was the first Indian dish that Richmond had ever tried many years ago. “I’m enamored by the balance of the very complex yet comforting approach to Indian cooking,” says Richmond.

The menu at Sāmbār will change with the season as the kitchen turns out a selection of spice-driven dishes that focus on local California ingredients including small plates, snacks, and street foods. While the foods of India can be as diverse as the varying states, from the heartier and richer curries of the North, to the rice-based and more tropical fare found in the south, there is a common thread which Richmond has effortlessly captured with the Sāmbār menu emphasizing a balance of sweet, spicy, hot, and salty, dishes such as Sevpuri Chaat, Gunpowder Smashed Potatoes, Truck Stop Goat Curry, Mississippi Masala Wings, Cheese Thali, or Black Quinoa Uttapam–a small fermented pancake.

Chef Akasha Richmond is our guest.

Play

Show 126, June 13, 2015: Chef Akasha Richmond, Sambar, Culver City Continues…

Akasha RichmondSambar is open for dinner to start with an announcement of lunch to follow. Richmond’s penchant for the lighter foods of the Southern region, as well as nourishing and curative ingredients will stand out at Sāmbār, such as the Pigeon Pea Fritters, Goan Chicken Xacuti, or Lemon Rice, as well as Curries and Vegetables including a Backwater Shrimp Stir-Fry and Punjabi Mama Greens, to name a few.

Exploring new techniques, the ever-evolving menu will showcase Richmond’s culinary prowess and ambition to try inventive dishes while striking a balance with approachable and crowd-pleasing items. “While there will be vegetarian options and we won’t have beef on the menu, we will have goat, lamb, and pork dishes, there will be something for everyone,” says Richmond. Additional entrées will include Tandoori-Style dishes such as a British Raj Chicken, Pistachio Lamp Chops, and Pork Shoulder roasted with vindaloo masala served with naan focaccia.

Think Indian food only pairs with beer? Nonsense! Sāmbār’s resident mixology team will be led by Clare Ward who, together with Richmond’s influence, inspired the cocktail program at Sāmbār. Ward also serves as the lead mixologist at AKASHA, Richmond’s landmark Culver City neighborhood eatery. Spice driven cocktails, housemade bitters, and rare and interesting spirits will be found on the drinks menu including “Last Train to Goa” ̶ a punch made with Arrack and rose syrup, or East Indian Pimms made with fresh curry leaves.

The most popular Spice Trade Cocktail thus far is “The Maharaja.” It’s rye, kummel combier, carrot syrup, beet shrub and lemon juice. It goes down way too easy…

The beverage program also incorporates housemade chai and organic Indian teas. Guests can enjoy cocktails at the bar or take a front-row seat just steps from the kitchen at the chefs’ counter and share Head on Prawns with Mango Powder Marinade and Turmeric Naan, or the Sāmbār Snack Mix and a drink.

Play

June 13: Greenbar Craft Distillery, Jason Neroni, Giacomino Drago, Lodi Wines, Akasha Richmond

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Chef Andrew Gruel and Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Litty Mathew, Co-Owner, Greenbar Craft Distillery
Segment Three: Executive Chef & Partner Jason Neroni, Catch & Release
Segment Four: Executive Chef and Restaurateur Giacomino Drago
Segment Five: Camron King, Executive Director, Lodi Wine Commission Part One
Segment Six: Camron King, Executive Director, Lodi Wine Commission Part Two
Segment Seven: Chef Akasha Richmond, Sambar, Culver City Part One
Segment Eight: Chef Akasha Richmond, Sambar, Culver City Part Two

Andrew GruelExecutive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, and, now, Newport Beach is back as today’s special Guest Host.

Now an enticing preview of Saturday’s fully-loaded show. Our goal is to leave you hungry and thirsty. In our case, that’s a good thing…

Greenbar Craft Distillery located in Downtown Los Angeles represents the world’s largest portfolio of organic, handcrafted spirits, including BAR KEEP organic bitters, CRUSOE organic rums, FRUITLAB organic liquers, IXA organic tequila, SLOW HAND organic whiskey, TRU organic gin and TRU organic vodkas. It’s the first new distillery located in Los Angeles since the repeal of Prohibition. Co-Founder Litty Mathew joins us with the spirited background.

Catch & Release, newly opened in Marina del Rey in the previous Paiche space, is an ode to New England seafood with California inspiration from Chef/Partner Jason Neroni (ex-Superba Snack Bar in Venice.) It’s a partnership with restaurateur Bill Chait’s Sprout L.A. Chef Neroni’s memories of Maine summers and precious time bonding over food with family led to the conception of Catch & Release. He’s our guest.

Beverly Hills is one of the toughest, and most unforgiving, markets for sophisticated dining in Los Angeles County. It’s hard to imagine thinking about quality Italian cuisine in Beverly Hills without mentioning il Pastaio, the celebrated Italian restaurant in the city’s center. For 21 years now, il Pastaio has served as an important gathering spot for locals as well as a place for celebrities to be seen. And for all of these years, one man has run the kitchen with an extraordinary eye for detail : Owner/Chef Giacomino Drago.

The soon-to-be-discovered “Lodi Wine Country” is one of California’s major winegrowing regions. It’s located 100 miles east of San Francisco near the San Joaquin/Sacramento River Delta, south of Sacramento and west of the Sierra Nevada mountain range. Lodi is characterized by rural atmosphere where wineries and farms run by 4th and 5th generation families operate in tandem with a new group of vintners who have brought creative winemaking and cutting–edge technology to the region.

Camron King, the Executive Director of the Lodi Winegrape Commission joins us with all the exciting 411.

Chef Akasha Richmond is one of the pioneers in destination dining in Culver City with Akasha which she debuted in 2008 in the historic building which was originally the City’s first hospital. Now she has launched her second restaurant in Culver City, Sambar, which is located steps away from Akasha. It’s inspired by her travels throughout India as well as her affinity for the rich culture and traditions of the country. Sambar showcases the diversity of Indian cuisine with an invigorating array of clean, bright flavors and choices – all inflected with familiar ingredients as interpreted through a California lens. Chef Akasha Richmond is our guest.

All of this and lots more absolutely incredible deliciousness on Saturday’s show!

Litty MathewGreenbar Craft Distillery located in Downtown Los Angeles represents the world’s largest portfolio of organic, handcrafted spirits, including BAR KEEP organic bitters, CRUSOE organic rums, FRUITLAB organic liquers, IXA organic tequila, SLOW HAND organic whiskey, TRU organic gin and TRU organic vodkas. It’s the first new distillery located in Los Angeles since the repeal of Prohibition.

When husband-and-wife team Melkon Khosrovian and Litty Mathew started Greenbar in 2004, they made conventional spirits with local, hand-processed produce. As their farmers switched to organics the Greenbar spirits started tasting different – better ! Greenbar Distillery switched, too.

Soon, their unique spirits won many awards. Melkon and Litty graciously couldn’t take all the credit. They learned their successes also hinged on some silent partners – the farmers who grew their ingredients. Several had moved to organic farming, resulting in more aromatic, flavorful produce. That, in turn, led to more flavorful, aromatic spirits.

“Today, Greenbar Craft Distillery produces and distributes the world’s biggest portfolio of organic spirits – all made by hand with real ingredients. The environment also benefits because the company uses lightweight bottles, 100 % recycled labels and plants a tree for every bottle sold.”

Co-Founder Litty Mathew joins us with the spirited background.

jason-neroniCatch & Release, newly opened in Marina del Rey in the previous Paiche space, is an ode to New England seafood with California inspiration from Chef/Partner Jason Neroni (exSuperba Snack Bar in Venice.) It’s a partnership with restaurateur Bill Chait’s Sprout L.A.

Chef Neroni’s memories of Maine summers and precious time bonding over food with family led to the conception of Catch & Release. Neroni has honed his culinary craft in kitchens all over the world, and these experiences are evidenced by the international influences on the menu. The range is from French bouillabaisse to Spanish paella. Catch & Release, while finding its providence in Maine, will retain the California sensibility for which Neroni has become known, serving seasonal seafood and vegetables, whenever possible, from local and sustainable sources.

As a 16-year-old kid from Orange County, Neroni got a job working in Disneyland’s Club 33. There he discovered a love of, and aptitude for, the kitchen that would set him apart. His newfound interest and abilities took him north to Chez Panisse, where he worked the line for a year and began his career-long reverence for responsibly sourced ingredients.

Giacomino DragoBeverly Hills is one of the toughest, and most unforgiving, markets for sophisticated dining in Los Angeles County. It’s hard to imagine thinking about quality Italian cuisine in Beverly Hills without mentioning il Pastaio, the celebrated Italian restaurant in the city’s center. For 21 years now, il Pastaio has served as an important gathering spot for locals as well as a place for celebrities to be seen. And for all of these years, one man has run the kitchen with an extraordinary eye for detail : Owner/Chef Giacomino Drago.

In Beverly Hills with its fickle clientele, it’s never easy to keep patrons happy. That Giacomino has consistently pleased his demanding customers for over two decades is a feat to be lauded. It’s clear something special is happening in the kitchen. Daily fresh-made pastas, traditional risottos, salads with Italian staples like artichokes, lentils and aged Parmesean, and entrees, including whole Branzino prepared simply with lemon, butter and capers. These are just a few of the fresh flavors that emerge from Giacomino’s kitchen.

Building upon the immediate success of il Pastaio, Giacomino opened the charming boutique trattoria Piccolo Paradiso in Beverly Hills. He also founded Panzanella in Sherman Oaks, il Segreto in the Bel Air hills, Via Alloro and il Buco, both in Beverly Hills, and Celestinio in Pasadena. In addition, Giacomino owns two fine dining sushi restaurants, SHU Sushi House Unico just a few doors away from his il Segreto in Bel Air, and Yojisan, a unique concept marrying Japanese and Italian cuisines into one. Here, albacore sashimi meets olive oil and persimmon for flavors never before considered. Taste the food you’ll agree it’s delicious.

Chef Giacomino is our guest.

Camron King of the Lodi Winegrape AssociationThe about-to-be-discovered “Lodi Wine Country” is one of California’s major winegrowing regions. It’s located 100 miles east of San Francisco near the San Joaquin/Sacramento River Delta, south of Sacramento and west of the Sierra Nevada mountain range. Lodi is characterized by rural atmosphere where wineries and farms run by 4th and 5th generation families operate in tandem with a new group of vintners who have brought creative winemaking and cutting–edge technology to the region.

In Lodi, grape growing is inextricably woven into the culture : the city of Lodi’s police department prominently features a grape cluster in its logo, and high school teams are named after grape varieties.

Lodi has been a major winegrape growing region for over 150 years. Unlike many U.S. wine regions, Lodi actually prospered during Prohibition and as such has been a continuous source of wine grapes since the 1850s. In fact, when early trappers wandered into what is now Lodi, they called one stream they discovered “Wine Creek” because of the proliferation of wild vines found there. As more and more Italian and German immigrants made their homes in Lodi, vinifera varieties such as Zinfandel, Tokay, and Alicante appeared by the 1880s.

Camron King, the Executive Director of the Lodi Winegrape Commission joins us with all the exciting 411.

The about-to-be-discovered “Lodi Wine Country” is one of California’s major winegrowing regions but maintains a low profile. Lodi is characterized by rural atmosphere where wineries and farms run by 4th and 5th generation families operate in tandem with a new group of vintners who have brought creative winemaking and cutting–edge technology to the region.

The Lodi American Viticultural Area (AVA) was recognized by the federal government in 1986, and seven smaller AVAs within the Lodi area were added in 2005.

Lodi leads the state in its commitment to sustainable agriculture and has demonstrated this by establishing Lodi Rules™ in 2005, California’s first third-party sustainable winegrowing program. As the first in California, Lodi Rules™ serves as a model for many wine regions that are now adopting sustainable winegrowing programs.

The Lodi AVA has about 100,000 acres of winegrapes, farmed by more than 750 growers, many of whose families have grown grapes for a century or more. The region’s annual yield of nearly 750,000 tons of grapes in 2012 was valued at $500 million and comprised 19 % of California’s total wine grape production.

He’s our guest.

Akasha RichmondChef Akasha Richmond is one of the pioneers in destination dining in Downtown Culver City with Akasha which she debuted in 2008. Now she has launched her second restaurant in Culver City, Sambar, which is located steps away from Akasha.

It’s inspired by her travels throughout India as well as her affinity for the rich culture and traditions of the country. Sambar showcases the diversity of Indian cuisine with an invigorating array of clean, bright flavors and choices – all inflected with familiar ingredients as interpreted through a California lens.

The concept takes its name from a traditional Indian based vegetable stew that is a staple in most South Indian homes. It was the first Indian dish that Richmond had ever tried many years ago. “I’m enamored by the balance of the very complex yet comforting approach to Indian cooking,” says Richmond.

The menu at Sāmbār will change with the season as the kitchen turns out a selection of spice-driven dishes that focus on local California ingredients including small plates, snacks, and street foods. While the foods of India can be as diverse as the varying states, from the heartier and richer curries of the North, to the rice-based and more tropical fare found in the south, there is a common thread which Richmond has effortlessly captured with the Sāmbār menu emphasizing a balance of sweet, spicy, hot, and salty, dishes such as Sevpuri Chaat, Gunpowder Smashed Potatoes, Truck Stop Goat Curry, Mississippi Masala Wings, Cheese Thali, or Black Quinoa Uttapam–a small fermented pancake.

Chef Akasha Richmond is our guest.

Sambar is open for dinner to start with an announcement of lunch to follow. Richmond’s penchant for the lighter foods of the Southern region, as well as nourishing and curative ingredients will stand out at Sāmbār, such as the Pigeon Pea Fritters, Goan Chicken Xacuti, or Lemon Rice, as well as Curries and Vegetables including a Backwater Shrimp Stir-Fry and Punjabi Mama Greens, to name a few.

Exploring new techniques, the ever-evolving menu will showcase Richmond’s culinary prowess and ambition to try inventive dishes while striking a balance with approachable and crowd-pleasing items. “While there will be vegetarian options and we won’t have beef on the menu, we will have goat, lamb, and pork dishes, there will be something for everyone,” says Richmond. Additional entrées will include Tandoori-Style dishes such as a British Raj Chicken, Pistachio Lamp Chops, and Pork Shoulder roasted with vindaloo masala served with naan focaccia.

Think Indian food only pairs with beer ? Nonsense! Sāmbār’s resident mixology team will be led by Clare Ward who, together with Richmond’s influence, inspired the cocktail program at Sāmbār. Ward also serves as the lead mixologist at AKASHA, Richmond’s landmark Culver City neighborhood eatery. Spice driven cocktails, housemade bitters, and rare and interesting spirits will be found on the drinks menu including “Last Train to Goa” ̶ a punch made with Arrack and rose syrup, or East Indian Pimms made with fresh curry leaves.

The beverage program will also incorporate housemade chai and organic Indian teas. Guests can enjoy cocktails at the bar or take a front-row seat just steps from the kitchen and share Head on Prawns with Mango Powder Marinade and Turmeric Naan, or the Sāmbār Snack Mix and a drink.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Chef Andrew Gruel and Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Litty Mathew, Co-Owner, Greenbar Craft Distillery
Segment Three: Executive Chef & Partner Jason Neroni, Catch & Release
Segment Four: Executive Chef and Restaurateur Giacomino Drago
Segment Five: Camron King, Executive Director, Lodi Wine Commission Part One
Segment Six: Camron King, Executive Director, Lodi Wine Commission Part Two
Segment Seven: Chef Akasha Richmond, Sambar, Culver City Part One
Segment Eight: Chef Akasha Richmond, Sambar, Culver City Part Two

Show 94, October 25, 2014: Show Preview with Producer Andy Harris

Producer and occasional Co-Host Andy Harris is going solo in the host chair this morning. Now a preview of today’s show…

Often dubbed the “Culinary Olympics,” the international Bocuse d’Or World Cooking Contest faces chefs from 24 countries against one another in an exhausting and intensive 5 and one-half hour cooking challenge in front of thousands of cheering fans. Teams consist of one chef and one commis assistant, with Team USA trained and financially supported by the ment’or BKB Foundation (previously known as the Bocuse d’Or USA Foundation.) Executive Director Young Yun (of ment’or BKB Foundation) is our guest.

AKASHA, in the historic Hull Building, is one of the pioneering restaurants in the revival of Downtown Culver City. The restaurant debuted in early 2008. It’s a contemporary restaurant, bar and café with patio seating, too, featuring New American cooking representing the creative vision of Executive Chef, Caterer, & Proprietress Akasha Richmond. We’ll hear about Chef Akasha’s newest venture.

It’s time to catch-up with the iconic Five Crowns and Side Door in Corona del Mar. The restaurant is a charming replica of one of England’s oldest country inns. The adjscent side door is a gastropub with its own identity. The Holidays are always a special time there and General Manager Jim Colombo will give us a preview of all the special Holiday happenings.

The “SoCal Restaurant Show” recently was aboard Holland America Line’s ms Zaandam on the Vancouver, BC to San Diego sailing of a longer 22-day Inca Discovery Tour ending in Valparaiso, Chile. This morning we continue our exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the key people who oversee this 716 room floating luxury hotel with some 1,400 guests aboard. With us is the ms Zaandam’s Executive Chef, Orly Obierna. He’s responsible for a kitchen staff of 90 who work in shifts around-the-clock.

A year ago on the show you met Cris Peterson and Tom Gordon of The Pepper Project. The Pepper Project is a not-for-profit enterprise devoted to introducing the unique products of Cambodia to the United States. Pepper from the Kampot region of southwestern Cambodia is their primary offering. A fully stocked Pepper Project retail store with one-of-a-kind items opens this Weekend in Orange.

Zov’s which started in Tustin in 1987 is growing again. This week they launched the prototype of Zov’s Kitchen & Bar located at 1801 E. Katella Ave within walking distance of both Honda Center and Angel Stadium. Veteran OC General Manager Kevin Hall is at the door. Many new items are on this menu including “Who Gives a Shitake Pitza” with rotisserie chicken, shitake mushrooms, basil puree, goat cheese, and olives and cooked in a deck oven. Chief Executive Office Armen Karamardian (representing the 2nd generation of proud Family Ownership) is with us to walk us through.

Did you know there are truly wonderful Italian sparkling wines that you don’t see much of in the United States ? These sparkling wines should not be confused with Prosecco which is actually a grape variety. Our resident wine expert, Kyle Meyer of Best Wines in Santa Ana, gives us the needed 411.

All of this and lots more absolutely incredible deliciousness on Saturday’s show!

Play

Show 94, October 25, 2014: Akasha Restaurant, Culver City

Akasha RichmondAKASHA, in the historic Hull Building, is one of the pioneering restaurants in the revival of Downtown Culver City. The restaurant debuted in early 2008. It’s a contemporary restaurant, bar and café with patio seating, too, featuring New American cooking representing the creative vision of Executive Chef, Caterer, & Proprietress Akasha Richmond.

Akasha knows her reputation is hard-earned, and she takes that trust very seriously. “I am very selective about the suppliers I work with for AKASHA – they must share my values to keep their ingredients on our menu.” Akaska says.

Akasha has just leased the coveted former Ford’s Filling Station location in Downtown Culver City for a new concept.

It will be her take on Indian cuisine which Akasha has an extensive background with going back to her time in the kitchen with the Golden Temple Conscious Cookery restaurant in Los Angeles.

Play

October 25: ment’or BKB Foundation, Akasha Richmond, Five Crowns, Side Door, ms Zaandam, Pepper Project, Zov’s Anaheim, Best Wines

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: ment’or BKB Foundation
Segment Three: Akasha Restaurant, Culver City
Segment Four: Jim Colombo, General Manager, Five Crowns and Side Door
Segment Five: Executive Chef Orly Obierna of the ms Zaandam
Segment Six: The Pepper Project
Segment Seven: Zov´s Kitchen & Bar, Anaheim
Segment Eight: Kyle Meyer, Best Wines

Producer and occasional Co-Host Andy Harris is going solo in the host chair this morning. Now a preview of today’s show…

Often dubbed the “Culinary Olympics,” the international Bocuse d’Or World Cooking Contest faces chefs from 24 countries against one another in an exhausting and intensive 5 and one-half hour cooking challenge in front of thousands of cheering fans. Teams consist of one chef and one commis assistant, with Team USA trained and financially supported by the ment’or BKB Foundation (previously known as the Bocuse d’Or USA Foundation.) Executive Director Young Yun (of ment’or BKB Foundation) is our guest.

AKASKA, in the historic Hull Building, is one of the pioneering restaurants in the revival of Downtown Culver City. The restaurant debuted in early 2008. It’s a contemporary restaurant, bar and café with patio seating, too, featuring New American cooking representing the creative vision of Executive Chef, Caterer, & Proprietress Akasha Richmond. We’ll hear about Chef Akasha’s newest venture.

It’s time to catch-up with the iconic Five Crowns and Side Door in Corona del Mar. The restaurant is a charming replica of one of England’s oldest country inns. The adjscent side door is a gastropub with its own identity. The Holidays are always a special time there and General Manager Jim Colombo will give us a preview of all the special Holiday happenings.

The “SoCal Restaurant Show” recently was aboard Holland America Line’s ms Zaandam on the Vancouver, BC to San Diego sailing of a longer 22-day Inca Discovery Tour ending in Valparaiso, Chile. This morning we continue our exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the key people who oversee this 716 room floating luxury hotel with some 1,400 guests aboard. With us is the ms Zaandam’s Executive Chef, Orly Obierna. He’s responsible for a kitchen staff of 90 who work in shifts around-the-clock.

A year ago on the show you met Cris Peterson and Tom Gordon of The Pepper Project. The Pepper Project is a not-for-profit enterprise devoted to introducing the unique products of Cambodia to the United States. Pepper from the Kampot region of southwestern Cambodia is their primary offering. A fully stocked Pepper Project retail store with one-of-a-kind items opens this Weekend in Orange.

Zov’s which started in Tustin in 1987 is growing again. This week they launched the prototype of Zov’s Kitchen & Bar located at 1801 E. Katella Ave within walking distance of both Honda Center and Angel Stadium. Veteran OC General Manager Kevin Hall is at the door. Many new items are on this menu including “Who Gives a Shitake Pitza” with rotisserie chicken, shitake mushrooms, basil puree, goat cheese, and olives and cooked in a deck oven. Chief Executive Office Armen Karamardian (representing the 2nd generation of proud Family Ownership) is with us to walk us through.

Did you know there are truly wonderful Italian sparkling wines that you don’t see much of in the United States ? These sparkling wines should not be confused with Prosecco which is actually a grape variety. Our resident wine expert, Kyle Meyer of Best Wines in Santa Ana, gives us the needed 411.

All of this and lots more absolutely incredible deliciousness on Saturday’s show!

Young YunOften dubbed the “Culinary Olympics,” the international Bocuse d’Or World Cooking Contest pits chefs from 24 culinary-centric countries against one another in an exhausting and intensive 5 and one-half hour cooking challenge in front of thousands of cheering fans. Teams consist of one chef and one commis assistant, with Team USA trained and financially supported by the ment’or BKB Foundation (previously known as the Bocuse d’Or USA Foundation.) The Foundation was created in 2008 by Chefs Jerome Bocuse, Daniel Boulud, and Thomas Keller.

Executive Director Young Yun (of ment’or BKB Foundation) is our guest.

“The goal of the Foundation is to give back and to acknowledge, inspire, and mentor the next generation of chefs,” notes Executive Director Yun. “For now, we are primarily focused on those in the kitchen, but the long-term goal is to facilitate successful careers in all aspects of the culinary world, from the front of the house to operations.”

Chef Philip Tessier and his Commis Skylar Stover of The French Laundry in Yountville, CA are going for the gold in Lyon in January 2015 as the Bocuse d’Or USA Team.

Akasha RichmondAKASHA, in the historic Hull Building, is one of the pioneering restaurants in the revival of Downtown Culver City. The restaurant debuted in early 2008. It’s a contemporary restaurant, bar and café with patio seating, too, featuring New American cooking representing the creative vision of Executive Chef, Caterer, & Proprietress Akasha Richmond.

Akasha knows her reputation is hard-earned, and she takes that trust very seriously. “I am very selective about the suppliers I work with for AKASHA – they must share my values to keep their ingredients on our menu.” Akaska says.

Akasha has just leased the coveted former Ford’s Filling Station location in Downtown Culver City for a new concept.

Jim ColomboIt’s time to catch-up with the iconic Five Crowns and Side Door in Corona del Mar. The restaurant is a charming replica of one of England’s oldest country inns.

The adjacent Side Door is a popular gastropub with its own identity and a youthful vibe. The Holidays are always a special time there and General Manager Jim Colombo (also a trained chef) will give us a preview of all the special Holiday happenings.

Orly ObiernaThe “SoCal Restaurant Show” recently was aboard Holland America Line’s ms Zaandam on the Vancouver, BC to San Diego sailing of a longer 22-day Inca Discovery Tour ending in Valparaiso, Chile. Today the ship is at sea with a Port of Call tomorrow at Coquimbo (La Serena.)

This morning we continue our exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the key people who oversee this 716 room floating luxury hotel with some 1,400 guests aboard. With us is the ms Zaandam’s veteran Executive Chef, Orly Obierna. He’s responsible for a kitchen staff of 90 who work in shifts around-the-clock.

The Pepper ProjectA year ago on the show you met Cris Peterson and Tom Gordon of The Pepper Project. The Pepper Project is a not-for-profit enterprise devoted to introducing the unique products of Cambodia to the United States. Pepper from the Kampot region of southwestern Cambodia is their flagship offering. The pepper has long been used in the finest restaurants of Europe and one goal of The Pepper Project is to make it available in the U.S. at an affordable price.

A fully stocked Pepper Project retail store with unusual and one-of-a-kind items opens this Weekend in Orange at 940 W. Chapman, Suite 106.

Armen KaramardianZov’s which started in Tustin in 1987 is growing again. This week they launched the prototype of Zov’s Kitchen & Bar located at 1801 E. Katella Ave within walking distance of both Honda Center and Angel Stadium. Veteran OC General Manager Kevin Hall is at the door.

Many new items are on this menu including “Who Gives a Shitake Pitza” with rotisserie chicken, shitake mushrooms, basil puree, goat cheese, and olives and cooked in a deck oven. From the sea is Sumac Roasted Seabass with shaved Brussels sprouts, baby spinach, tomato, rice pilaf, and caper citrus butter sauce.

The new Corporate Executive Chef for Zov’s is rising star chef Louie Jocson who previously created the highly-regarded Red Table in Huntington Beach..

Chief Executive Officer Armen Karamardian (representing the 2nd generation of proud Family Ownership) is with us to walk us through.

“We are delighted to be a part of the ever-evolving and dynamic community of Anaheim,” said Armen Karamardian, who has overseen the expansion of the family operations from the original restaurant in Tustin to include the Irvine and Newport Coast locations as well as 2 at Orange County Airport.  “We look forward bringing Zov’s to Anaheim, the epicenter of Orange County, and being a part of the community.”

Kyle Meyer of Best WiinesDid you know there are truly wonderful Italian sparkling wines that you don’t see much of in the United States ? These sparkling wines should not be confused with Prosecco which is actually an Italian grape variety.

Our new resident wine expert, Kyle Meyer, President and Director of Purchasing for Best Wines in Santa Ana, gives us the authoritative 411.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: ment’or BKB Foundation
Segment Three: Akasha Restaurant, Culver City
Segment Four: Jim Colombo, General Manager, Five Crowns and Side Door
Segment Five: Executive Chef Orly Obierna of the ms Zaandam
Segment Six: The Pepper Project
Segment Seven: Zov´s Kitchen & Bar, Anaheim
Segment Eight: Kyle Meyer, Best Wines