Show 291, September 22, 2018: Brewmaster Victor Novak, Golden Road Brewing, Los Angeles & Anaheim

Victor Novak and his Blueberry Mocha Stout from Golden Road Brewingt’s time to once again Ask the Brewers. Joining us in-studio is  Golden Road Brewing’s distinguished Brewmaster, Victor Novak.

On tap is a discussion of the original (185 years old) Oktoberfest in Munich celebration (on until October 7th) and some thoughts on Yakima hops and their importance to the domestic brewing scene. Thirst-quenching conversation for sure…

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Show 286, August 18, 2018: Golden Road Brewing’s Victor Novak and Steven Torres

Victor Novak and Steven TorresIt’s the return of our thirst quenching “Ask the Brewers” segment. Joining us is Golden Road Brewing’s Brewmaster, Victor Novak, and Anaheim Head Brewer, Steven Torres.

Barrel-aged beer is a popular trend on the craft beer scene. Think aging small lots of beer in whiskey barrels…We’ll find out what it’s all about from our experts. Our Brewers will tap the barrel on this fun little side project.

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Show 280, July 7, 2018: Victor Novak, Brewmaster & Steven Torres, Anaheim Head Brewer, Golden Road Brewing

Victor Novak and Steven TorresWe’re initiating a new monthly segment on the “SoCal Restaurant Show” called “Ask the Brewer.” To embark on this we’re delighted to welcome Golden Road’s highly accomplished Brewmaster, Victor Novak, and Anaheim Head Brewer Steven Torres.

Beer pairs really well with food. Victor and Steven will provide us with a tall stein of refreshing “Beer Pairing 101.”

First we chat a bit about the Anaheim production brewery and some notes from Season 3 of Viceland’s “Beerland” which concluded on June 26th. The Season Finale took place right here at Golden Road Anaheim.

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Show 200, December 3, 2016: Brewmaster Victor Novak, Golden Road Brewing

Victor Novak and his Blueberry Mocha Stout from Golden Road BrewingOrange County craft beer enthusiasts know Victor Novak as the long-time (15 years), acclaimed head brewer of Taps in Brea. He’s also responsible for graciously mentoring many of the prominent young brewers among the new wave of award-winning OC craft breweries.

In late 2014 he joined the brewing team at the fast-growing Golden Road Brewing and is now their brewmaster.

“In 2011, beer enthusiasts Meg Gill and Tony Yanow founded Golden Road Brewing to bring fresh beer to the local market in the most sustainable way possible. Golden Road is committed to engaging and supporting the growing community of socially-minded beer enthusiasts.” “Golden Road’s year-round offerings include Point the Way IPA, Golden Road Hefeweizen, Get Up Offa That Brown and Wolf Among Weeds IPA. Along with the core beers, Golden Road brewers are constantly experimenting with the freshest ingredients through a collection of rotating, seasonal and limited-edition brews including the Custom IPA Series, a line-up of diverse, hop-forward IPAs.”

A new brewery in Anaheim (across E. Orangewood Ave. from the South entrance to Angel Stadium) with a Tasting Room was added this year with a rotating selection of 20 styles on tap. Victor uses the original 15-barrel system from Golden Road’s original L.A., brewery. Eventually the evolving facility will include a full-service restaurant.

Victor sampled Anaheim’s cult favorite, Blueberry Mocha Stout (extremely limited availability) which was the hit craft beer of this year’s OozeFest in Santa Ana. It uses Golden Road’s Oatmeal Stout in the making.

Head Brewer Victor is tapping a fresh keg with us.

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Show 123, May 23, 2015: Brewmaster Victor Novak, Golden Road Brewing Continues…

Victor Novak of Taps Fish House and Brewery in BreaWe’re previewing the 7th Annual Pechanga Microbrew and Chili Cookoff.

Microbrew Festival tickets are $50.00. Guests receive a two ounce souvenir glass to sample unlimited beer tastings. Designated driver tickets are available for $30.00. Both ticket levels let attendees taste all chili and other gourmet food samples, take in live music by two bands including iconic bassist Lee Rocker of The Stray Cats, and an extensive silent auction. Guests must be 21 or older to attend. For tickets or more information, visit www.Pechanga.com or call 877.711.2946.

One of the participating craft breweries at the Perchanga Microbrew Festival is the fast-growing Golden Road Brewing in Los Angeles and with a new brewery and tap room soon to be located across the street from Angel Stadium in Anaheim. Long-time TAPS brewmaster Victor Novak has moved to Golden Road Brewing to be the brewmaster for Orange County.

In 2011, beer enthusiasts Meg Gill and Tony Yanow founded Golden Road Brewing to bring fresh beer to the local market in the most sustainable way possible. Brewed and canned in Los Angeles, Golden Road’s year-round offerings include Point the Way IPA, Golden Road Hefeweizern, Get Up Offa That Brown and Wolf Among Weeds IPA.

In concluding Victor also explained the quality benefits of canning beer. Light and air are the enemies of keeping beer fresh. Cans are a great way to insure the freshness of the beer and also reduces the carbon footprint. (The weight of glass bottles becomes an issue in the shipping process.)

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Show 77, June 21, 2014: Jason Wilson, Founder, Back Forty Beer Co., Gadsden, AL

Jason WilsonFounded in 2009 by Jason Wilson, Back Forty Beer Co. is one of the oldest Alabama breweries and the first to distribute outside of the state. Back Forty beers are available statewide in Alabama, Florida, Georgia and Mississippi. The brewery is located in Historic Downtown Gadsden, Alabama.

“In 2008, after several years in the corporate world and with over 150 brewery tours under his belt, founder Jason Wilson reached out to renowned Brewmaster Jamie Ray and asked for his help in developing recipes for Back Forty Beer Co.

The goal for the liquid was simple – to expose Southerners to the same craft beer culture that Wilson had been part of for the last ten years. This meant starting out with classic beer styles and evolving with customers along the way. Jamie agreed and in January of 2009 he became Back Forty’s first employee.

In June of 2009, Back Forty released its first offering, Naked Pig Pale Ale. The beer was only available in the North-Central Alabama home market, but the response was overwhelming. In March of 2010 the second Back Forty offering hit the shelves, Truck Stop Honey Brown Ale. Later that year Truck Stop Honey was awarded a Silver Medal at the Great American Beer Festival, and in the weeks following, distribution offers poured in that allowed Back Forty to expand its coverage throughout Alabama.

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June 21: Linda Kissam, Chianina Steakhouse, Back Forty Beer Co, Irvine Greek Fest

Podcasts

Segment One: Guest Host Linda Kissam and Producer Andy preview the show
Segment Two: Linda Kissam, food, wine and travel writer, 1st Vice President, IFWTWA Part One
Segment Three: Linda Kissam, food, wine and travel writer, 1st Vice President, IFWTWA Part Two
Segment Four: Alejandro Duran, General Manager, Chianina Steakhouse, Naples Island, Long Beach Part One
Segment Five: EAlejandro Duran, General Manager, Chianina Steakhouse, Naples Island, Long Beach Part Two
Segment Six: Jason Wilson, Founder, Back Forty Beer Co., Gadsden, AL Part One
Segment Seven: Jason Wilson, Founder, Back Forty Beer Co., Gadsden, AL Part Two
Segment Eight: Restaurateur George Kookootsedes, 36th Annual Greek Festival, St. Paul’s Greek Orthodox Church, Irvine

Guest Host Linda Kissam and Producer Andy preview the show.

How do you conduct a serious educational wine tasting (that’s also fun) with a group? Wine, food and travel writer Linda Kissam is with us to explain.

Quality Italian beef, pasta, and sustainable seafood are on the menu at the new Chianina Steakhouse in the Naples area of Long Beach. This is from the hospitality team known for Michael’s on Naples. Linda Kissam recently experienced a dinner there.

The craft beer movement, surprisingly, is vibrant and thriving in Alabama. Back Forty Beer Co. is the largest, and oldest, packaging brewery in the State.

The 36th Annual Greek Festival brings a “Taste of Greece” to Orange County at St. Paul’s Greek Orthodox Church from June 27th to 29th. More than 11,000 guests are expected to attend the three-day festival which will feature traditional Greek cuisine, wine tasting, live music, and authentic Greek dancing with lessons. It’s a family-friendly affair!

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

Linda KissamHow do you conduct a serious, educational wine tasting with a group that’s also entertaining and fun? Wine, food and travel writer Linda Kissam is with us to explain. She organizes tastings all the time…

She expertly demonstrated this recently for a group of professional food, wine, and travel journalists at the annual conference of the International, Food, Wine, and Travel Writers Association in Montgomery, AL.

It was an organized tasting of five Italian Sparking Wines.

It’s fun but there is a proper way of doing this.

She also explains what the International Food, Wine, and Travel Writers Association does and what their mission is. Linda serves as their First Vice President.

Chianina SteakhouseHigh-end steakhouses with a serious bar and deep wine lists are very much in fashion these days.

How about an elegant steakhouse that serves limited availability, high-quality Italian beef, prime steaks, and sustainable seafood? There is also a well-regarded executive chef (David Coleman) overseeing things. We’ll be meeting the General Manager of Chianina Steakhouse in the Naples neighborhood of Long Beach, part of the ever expanding Michael’s Restaurant Group. We’re joined by Alejandro Duran of Chianina.

Chianina beef will soon be on their menu.

Jason WilsonFounded in 2009 by Jason Wilson, Back Forty Beer Co. is one of the oldest Alabama breweries and the first to distribute outside of the state. Back Forty beers are available statewide in Alabama, Florida, Georgia and Mississippi. The brewery is located in Historic Downtown Gadsden, Alabama.

“In 2008, after several years in the corporate world and with over 150 brewery tours under his belt, founder Jason Wilson reached out to renowned Brewmaster Jamie Ray and asked for his help in developing recipes for Back Forty Beer Co.

The goal for the liquid was simple – to expose Southerners to the same craft beer culture that Wilson had been part of for the last ten years. This meant starting out with classic beer styles and evolving with customers along the way. Jamie agreed and in January of 2009 he became Back Forty’s first employee.

In June of 2009, Back Forty released its first offering, Naked Pig Pale Ale. The beer was only available in the North-Central Alabama home market, but the response was overwhelming. In March of 2010 the second Back Forty offering hit the shelves, Truck Stop Honey Brown Ale. Later that year Truck Stop Honey was awarded a Silver Medal at the Great American Beer Festival, and in the weeks following, distribution offers poured in that allowed Back Forty to expand its coverage throughout Alabama.

Jason revealed the great news that it looks like Back Forty Beer Co.’s styles will be available in Southern California by year’s end. We’ll keep you posted…

irvine-greek-festThe 36th Annual Greek Festival brings a “Taste of Greece” to Orange County at St. Paul’s Greek Orthodox Church from June 27th to 29th. More than 11,000 guests are expected to attend the three-day festival which will feature traditional Greek cuisine, wine tasting, live music, and authentic Greek dancing with lessons. It’s a family-friendly affair!

Legendary OC Restaurateur Mr. K (George Kookootsedes)
(John Dominis) is our guest…As a dedicated volunteer he puts the incredible food program together each year.

As guest host Linda Kissam notes , “It’s the next best thing to flying to Greece.”

Podcasts

Segment One: Guest Host Linda Kissam and Producer Andy preview the show
Segment Two: Linda Kissam, food, wine and travel writer, 1st Vice President, IFWTWA Part One
Segment Three: Linda Kissam, food, wine and travel writer, 1st Vice President, IFWTWA Part Two
Segment Four: Alejandro Duran, General Manager, Chianina Steakhouse, Naples Island, Long Beach Part One
Segment Five: EAlejandro Duran, General Manager, Chianina Steakhouse, Naples Island, Long Beach Part Two
Segment Six: Jason Wilson, Founder, Back Forty Beer Co., Gadsden, AL Part One
Segment Seven: Jason Wilson, Founder, Back Forty Beer Co., Gadsden, AL Part Two
Segment Eight: Restaurateur George Kookootsedes, 36th Annual Greek Festival, St. Paul’s Greek Orthodox Church, Irvine

Show 55, January 4, 2013: Brian Thorson, Brewmaster, Haven Gastropub + Brewery

Brian Thorson of Haven Gastropub and BreweryHaven Gastropub + Brewery in Old Pasadena has a new brewmaster, Brian Thorson, who has been with them for a year now gaining significant acclaim from area craft beer enthusiasts. Previously in Northern California Brian created quite a following at Drake’s and Trumer Pils.

Brian brews for both Havens (Old Pasadena & Old Towne Orange,) Provisions Market, Taco Asylum, as well as a few select wholesale accounts. There are typically some 12 Haven styles at any given moment but that varies by season.

A current standout is El Barista Rojo brewed with Portola Coffee Lab coffee (added during conditioning.) Also of particular note is the Hops, Inc. This IPA showcases hop flavor and aroma without bitterness.

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January 4: Bill Esparza, Brian Thorson, Sean E. Brown, Ivan Orkin, Jesus Sanchez, Robert Schueller

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Bill Esparza, The Mexican Food Maestro and Street Gourmet LA Blog
Segment Three: Brian Thorson, Brewmaster, Haven Gastropub + Brewery
Segment Four: Sean E. Brown, Executive Chef, ESPN Zone of Anaheim
Segment Five: Chef Ivan Orkin, The Ramen Authority Part One
Segment Six: Chef Ivan Orkin, The Ramen Authority Part Two
Segment Seven: Chef Jesus Sanchez CEC, Culinary Arts Institute, Los Angeles Mission College
Segment Eight: Robert Schueller, The Produce Guru, Melissa’s / World Variety Produce

We’re starting off 2014 with a bang. Tune-in…

Chef Jet and Producer Andy preview the show.

We have the fascinating story of a middle-aged chef from New York who ventured to Japan to find himself, opened a modest ramen shop in a Tokyo suburb, and became a huge culinary celebrity in Japan! Bill Esparza is also with us, the Mexican Food Maestro and the unofficial Ambassador to the foods of Baja. Also a look at the truly affordable culinary arts program at Los Angeles Mission College, part of the Community College system.

Bill EsparzaThe 16th Annual Los Angeles Times Travel Show returns to the West Hall of the L.A. Convention Center on January 18 & 19. Our favorite Mexican Food Maestro, Bill Esparza, of the Street Gourmet LA blog is with us to preview his activities at the show.

Bill has cooking demos on the Flavors of the World Stage on Saturday at 3:00 p.m. and on Sunday at 11:00 a.m. The Sunday demo he is doing with Mariana Oviedo who represents the 2nd generation of the acclaimed Guerrerense food cart in Ensenada, Mexico started by her mother, Sabina Bandera in 1962.

Brian Thorson of Haven Gastropub and BreweryHaven Gastropub + Brewery in Old Pasadena has a new brewmaster, Brian Thorson, who has been with them for a year now gaining significant acclaim from area craft beer enthusiasts. Previously in Northern California Brian created quite a following at Drake’s and Trumer Pils.

Brian brews for both Havens as well as a few select wholesale accounts. There are typically some 12 Haven styles at any given moment but that varies by season.

A current standout is El Barista Rojo brewed with Portola Coffee Lab coffee (added during conditioning.) Also of particular note is the Hops, Inc. This IPA showcases hop flavor and aroma without bitterness.

Sean Brown of the ESPN Zone in AnaheimThe ESPN Zone in Anaheim in Downtown Disney is the last of the ESPN Zones so it’s a special place. ESPN television and radio is owned by Disney and its an enormous profit center for the parent corporation.

Besides being the primo sports viewing complex of choice in the area there is a welcome new direction in the food. The new executive chef, Sean E. Brown, is committed to serving the best in homestyle American comfort food. Let’s talk about the brined pork chop special for instance.

Chef Sean spent ten years cooking in Hawaii before returning to the mainland so fresh and local is part of his repertoire! He wants to be part of the community and especially welcomes Orange County locals to stop-by and say hello.

Look for a new lunch menu in the near future. Currently they offer an all-day menu.

Ivan Orkin of Ivan RamenIn 2007, Chef Ivan Orkin, a middle-aged Jewish guy from Long Island, did something crazy. In the food-zealous, insular megalopolis of Tokyo, Ivan opened a ramen shop. He had never launched a restaurant previously.

He was a foreigner trying to make a name for himself in a place that is fiercely opinionated about ramen. At first customers came because they were simply curious. Word then spread quickly about Ivan’s handmade noodles, clean and complex broth, and thoughtfully prepared toppings.

Soon enough Chef Ivan became a culinary celebrity in Japan. Fame in Japan begat his own best-selling brand of premium instant ramen.

Ivan Ramen in New York City and TokyoToday there are two busy Ivan Ramen locations in Tokyo and the new Ivan Ramen Slurp Shop in Manhattan. Ivan Ramen New York, a full-service Japanese restaurant, will open in the next couple of months.

International food authority Anthony Bourdain (CNN’s “Parts Unknown”) had this to say about Ivan Orkin :
“What Ivan Orkin does not know about noodles is not worth knowing.”

Ivan Orkin has told his story in the newly published Ivan Ramen – Love, Obsession, and Recipes from Tokyo’s Most Unlikely Noodle Joint. It’s both a memoir and a cookbook. Chef Ivan shares more than forty recipes including the complete, detailed recipe for his signature Shio Ramen.

Celebrity Chef David Chang of the Momofuku restaurant empire in New York wrote the hilarious forward.

Where can you go to culinary school locally, get a solid foundation, and not be in debt for the rest of your life?

Jesus Sanchez of the Culinary Arts Institute at Los Angeles Mission CollegeCertified Executive Chef Jesus Sanchez, a Culinary Instructor at the Culinary Arts Institute at Los Angeles Mission College in Sylmar for 11 years, is with us with all the key 411.

Their Culinary Arts Institute is housed in a new 85,000 sq. ft. building with 6 classrooms, a demonstration lab/classroom and 7 impressive kitchen lab classrooms.

They offer both an Associate in Arts Degree in Culinary Arts and an Associate in Arts Degree in Restaurant Management. In addition there are Certificate Programs for Achievement in Culinary Arts, Baking & Patisserie, and Restaurant Management.

With the new year what’s in season with local fruits and vegetables?

Robert Schueller of Melissa's World Variety ProduceOur resident produce guru, Robert Schueller of Melissa’s World Variety Produce, is back with us to highlight what’s best of the season right now.

We’ll talk Korean Pears, Cocktail Grapefruit, Meyer Lemons, Key Limes, Dutch Yellow Potatoes, Padron Peppers, Baby Brussels Sprouts and Kale Sprouts.

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Bill Esparza, The Mexican Food Maestro and Street Gourmet LA Blog
Segment Three: Brian Thorson, Brewmaster, Haven Gastropub + Brewery
Segment Four: Sean E. Brown, Executive Chef, ESPN Zone of Anaheim
Segment Five: Chef Ivan Orkin, The Ramen Authority Part One
Segment Six: Chef Ivan Orkin, The Ramen Authority Part Two
Segment Seven: Chef Jesus Sanchez CEC, Culinary Arts Institute, Los Angeles Mission College
Segment Eight: Robert Schueller, The Produce Guru, Melissa’s / World Variety Produce

April 27: Victor Novak, Dean Simon, Nancy Zaslavsky, Wing Lam

Podcasts

Segment One: Brewmaster Victor Novak of TAPS Fish House & Brewery in Downtown Brea
Segment Two: Dean Simon, Managing Partner of BRUXIE Gourmet Waffle Sandwiches Part One
Segment Three: Dean Simon, Managing Partner of BRUXIE Gourmet Waffle Sandwiches Part Two
Segment Four: Nancy Zaslavsky, “A Cook’s Tour to Mexico”
Segment Five: Wing Lam, co-founder of Wahoo’s Fish Taco and Michael Browne, co-founder of Kosta Browne Wines in Sebastopol, CA
Segment Six: Wing Lam, co-founder of Wahoo’s Fish Taco and Michael Cho, esq. of Palmieri, Tyler, Weiner, Wilhelm & Waldron LLP

We’re back…It’s a week of fascinating local success stories from  beverages to great food. There will be a slight detour to Mexico along the way to learn a bit about food tourism there. Please join us for the journey.

Victor Novak of Taps Fish House and Brewery in BreaBack in 1999 when veteran Brewmaster Victor Novak opened TAPS Fish House & Brewery in Brea the craft beer movement was in its infancy. Now it’s the fastest growing segment of the beer business and all the mega breweries are eagerly joining in the fray.

Today TAPS brews some 1,700 kegs annually representing an impressive portfolio of some 31 to 35 styles of European and American ales and lagers. Novak’s beers are so popular they are even featured on tap at other restaurants.

On Saturday, April 27th TAPS is hosting its First Annual Craft Beer Festival showcasing the brews of over 25 of Southern California’s finest craft breweries. There will also be international street food stations to pair with the beer. It’s from Noon to 3:00 p.m. on TAPS patio and bar.

Dean Simon and Kelly Mullarney of BruxieBruxie is the fast-growing restaurant empire built on the recipe for a mouth-watering, authentic Belgian waffle. It started with a modest stand in Old Towne Orange in 2010 and the latest, most ambitious, store (the 5th) opened this week in downtown Huntington Beach.

Co-founder Dean Simon is with us to share his secrets for maintaining quality and guest satisfaction when you’re growing fast.

Nancy Zaslavsky is a well-traveled authority on the foods of Mexico, a cookbook author, cooking instructor, and accomplished culinary tour leader.

As Nancy says, “I’m not Mexican. I’m a blond gringa who loves Mexico, its culture, cuisine and people. One of my greatest joys is to share this enthusiasm with those who want to learn more about a fascinating country.”

Wing Lam of Wahoo's Fish TacosWing Lam, the co-founder of Wahoo’s Fish Taco, needs no introduction to Southern Californians. Wing and his brothers Ed and Mingo are 2nd generation restaurateurs who parlayed a love for surfing into a successful restaurant empire which started in Costa Mesa. Incredibly the ever youthful Wing is celebrating Wahoo’s 25th Anniversary this year. Over the years Wahoo’s has strived to be a part of the communities they serve which now include California, Colorado, Texas, and Hawaii.

Wing also has an appreciation for quality libations including fine wine. He’ll share his wine adventures in Sonoma County from last weekend hanging with some of the legends of California Pinot Noir.

Wing will also provide his insights on keeping Wahoo’s popular when the large chain fast food restaurants are now also selling fish tacos. There is a difference…

Podcasts

Segment One: Brewmaster Victor Novak of TAPS Fish House & Brewery in Downtown Brea
Segment Two: Dean Simon, Managing Partner of BRUXIE Gourmet Waffle Sandwiches Part One
Segment Three: Dean Simon, Managing Partner of BRUXIE Gourmet Waffle Sandwiches Part Two
Segment Four: Nancy Zaslavsky, “A Cook’s Tour to Mexico”
Segment Five: Wing Lam, co-founder of Wahoo’s Fish Taco and Michael Browne, co-founder of Kosta Browne Wines in Sebastopol, CA
Segment Six: Wing Lam, co-founder of Wahoo’s Fish Taco and Michael Cho, esq. of Palmieri, Tyler, Weiner, Wilhelm & Waldron LLP