Show 423, May 1, 2021: Restaurateur & Executive Chef Amar Santana, The Hall, Vaca and Broadway

Amar Santana at the Finale of Top Chef

Orange County notable Amar Santana, the well-known chef of Vaca and The Hall Global Eatery at South Coast Plaza, as well as Broadway by Amar Santana in Laguna Beach, has returned to Bravo’s Top Chef Season 18 with a twist.

“This current Season, Chef Amar traded his cheftestant toque for a seat at the prestigious Judge’s Table. He was selected to be part of an elite rotating judging and dining panel made up of Top Chef All Star winners and finalists.”

“Santana, in a tight finale, ended Season 13 as the Top Chef runner-up. The ranking was made more impressive as he battled his way back to the win in “Last Chance Kitchen” where eliminated chefs compete for the wild card spot in the finale.”

“Portland, Oregon is the setting for the new season of Top Chef. Production took place last fall under rigid COVID-19 protocols and devastating wildfires. Santana was on hand for the first eight episodes including the popular “Restaurant Wars” competition.” We chat with Chef Amar about his perspective of the behind-the-scenes of the production. There was an ethnic chicken and rice dish sourced from a nearby stationary food truck that was especially popular for delivery.

Top Chef Season 18 currently airs Thursday at 8 p.m. PDT. The long-running culinary reality show has garnered more than 32 Emmy nominations and two wins over 13 years.

“Santana’s long-standing relationship with South Coast Plaza began in 2008 when the graduate of the Culinary Institute of America (and a C-CAP alum and scholarship recipient from High School) was hand-picked by Chef Charlie Palmer to open his eponymous restaurant at Bloomingdale’s. It was there Santana first worked with restaurateur Ahmed Labbate, another veteran of Palmer’s restaurant empire. The two subsequently went on to partner in three thriving restaurants in the competitive Orange County dining scene.” (Locations in South Coast Plaza and Laguna Beach.)

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Show 421, April 17, 2021: Chef Carla Hall – Honoree for “A Taste of C-Cap – 2021 Virtual Annual Gala” Part One

Celebrity Chef Carla Hall

On Thursday evening April 29, The Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP) is presenting “A Taste of C-CAP– 2021 Virtual Annual Gala.” During the fundraising event, C-CAP will honor a beacon of hope to all of us– chef, author and TV Host, Carla Hall– for her work to mentor and support C-CAP’s students and alumni.

“Carla first won over audiences when she competed on Bravo’s Top Chef and Top Chef: All Stars (fan favorite) and shared her philosophy to always cook with love. She believes food connects us all and strives to communicate this.”

Among the many benefits at the Commis donation level for “A Taste of C-CAP” is a multi-course meal (delivered to your home via Goldbelly) prepared by either Marcus Samuelsson or Carla Hall. It’s arrives expertly packaged, ready to heat and serve.

Carla spent 7 years co-hosting ABC’s Emmy award-winning, popular lifestyle series The Chew, and she currently brightens the mornings of millions as a Culinary Contributor to Good Morning America. She hosts a Podcast on the Wondery Platform called Say Yes with Carla Hall. Her latest cookbook, Carla Hall’s Soul Food: Everyday and Celebration, has landed on annual “Best Cookbook” lists across the country and received an NAACP Image Awards nomination. Carla also serves on the Leadership Committee for the James Beard Foundation Food and Beverage Investment Fund for Black and Indigenous Americans.

Just announced is that Chef Carla has her first children’s cookbook (with illustrations) coming out in the Fall. It’s titled Carla and the Christmas Cornbread.

Chef Carla joins us.

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Show 421, April 17, 2021: Chef Carla Hall – Honoree for “A Taste of C-Cap – 2021 Virtual Annual Gala” Part Two

Celebrity Chef Carla Hall

On Thursday evening April 29, The Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP) is presenting “A Taste of C-CAP– 2021 Virtual Annual Gala.” During the fundraising event, C-CAP will honor a beacon of hope to all of us– chef, author and TV Host, Carla Hall– for her work to mentor and support C-CAP’s students and alumni.

“Carla first won over audiences when she competed on Bravo’s Top Chef and Top Chef: All Stars (fan favorite) and shared her philosophy to always cook with love. She believes food connects us all and strives to communicate this.”

“Carla spent 7 years co-hosting ABC’s Emmy award-winning, popular lifestyle series The Chew, and she currently brightens the mornings of millions as a Culinary Contributor to Good Morning America. She hosts a Podcast on the Wondery Platform called Say Yes with Carla Hall. Her latest cookbook, Carla Hall’s Soul Food: Everyday and Celebration, has landed on annual “Best Cookbook” lists across the country and received an NAACP Image Awards nomination. Carla also serves on the Leadership Committee for the James Beard Foundation Food and Beverage Investment Fund for Black and Indigenous Americans.

Missing Chef Carla’s Nashville Hot Chicken from her Brooklyn restaurant and Barclays Center? You can now get this delicious chicken (ready to enjoy) and also an assortment of Carla’s signature baked goods delivered to your door via Goldbelly.

Just announced is that Chef Carla has her first children’s cookbook (with illustrations) coming out in the Fall. It’s titled Carla and the Christmas Cornbread. Preorders now via Amazon.

Chef Carla Hall continues with us.

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Show 417, March 20, 2021: Food & Travel Journalist Barbara Fairchild (former Editor-in-Chief of Bon Appetit Magazine)

Journalist Barbara Fairchild

Barbara Fairchild, a past inductee in the James Beard Foundation’s “Who’s Who in American Food & Beverage,” is the former, long-time Editor-in-Chief of Bon Appetit Magazine. She currently serves at the Chair of the L.A. Council for C-CAP (Careers through Culinary Arts Program) and also is a member of the National Board of Directors for C-CAP.

In normal times Barbara dines out frequently at a wide variety of restaurants. For the past pandemic year Barbara has stayed safely at home with restaurant dining on the far back burner. Barbara recently broke the fast with a celebratory birthday meal on the original patio of Spago Beverly Hills (with proper social distancing of the tables.) Barbara shares the memorable experience with us.

She also provides us with an overview of C-CAP and the upcoming virtual culinary fundraising event (“A Taste of C-CAP – 2021 Virtual Annual Gala) they are presenting nationally on Thursday evening, April 29th with culinary celebrity Carla Hall as the honoree (and hosted by Marcus Samuelsson) and showcasing nationwide Celebrity Chefs. Giving options include a meal (delivered by Goldbelly) prepared by Chef Marcus Samuelsson or Chef Carla Hall to be finished in the home kitchen.

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Show 338, August 24, 2019: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris

Now an enticing preview of this Saturday’s delectable 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.

The classic martini never went out of style and gin is making a resurgence in the cocktail world. Plymouth Gin (dating to 1793) is closely tied to the evolution of many of the cocktail world’s significant libations. Guiding us is Plymouth Gin’s Global Brand Ambassador, Sebastian Hamilton-Mudge.
Lincoln Carson is the Chef/Partner of the ambitious Bon Temps Los Angeles restaurant located next to the Firehouse Hotel in the Arts District adjacent to Downtown Los Angeles. An all-day restaurant Bon Temps reimagines a modern French brasserie with industrial roots. From morning until late-night, the menu is refined with an attention to detail that nods to Chef Lincoln Carson’s lineage working in internationally-acclaimed restaurants. We entice Chef Lincoln out of his busy kitchens for a chat.

“Write. Create. Imbibe. Connect”

A Nourished Spirit is a four-part writing workshop (August 22, September 26, October 17 and November 14) curated for the Double Take at the Kimpton Palomar hotel in Westwood using craft cocktails and distinguished wines as our inspiration. Each evening includes curated libations, light bites and all you need to connect pen to paper.” The Creative Team, including Producer Jayne Portnoy, joins us with the specifics.

Our always on the go Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel of The Slapfish Restaurant Group, joins us with another installment of “Ask the Chef.” Chef Andrew responds to your questions.

Tuxton China Inc., a leading tabletop supplier to the foodservice industry, will again (for the 4th year) partner with C-CAP, the Careers through Culinary Arts Program, to raise vitally needed funds. By purchasing Tuxton products during September, Tuxton will make a generous donation to help provide thousands of high school students across the United States with scholarships, training, internships and much more. Tuxton’s Vice President of Business Development, Jennifer Rolander, joins us with the details.

Once a year Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill in Pico Rivera hosts a series of Hatch Chile-themed events to celebrate the famous New Mexican spicy and savory pepper. First up is Chef Marco’s Hatch pepper Cooking Demonstration on Tuesday evening, August 27th from 6 to 8:00 p.m. Zapien’s will then host a daytime Hatch Chile Roast on September 7th were supplies of the roasted Hatch Chiles can be picked up by the case. The guest selects the level of spicy desired ranging from mild to hot. Also on Saturday, September 7th from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. join Chef Marco and Zapien’s Salsa Grill for their special Hatch Chile Brunch featuring over ten Hatch Chile inspired dishes. We’ll entice Chef Marco away from the chile roaster for a chat.

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

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Show 338, August 24, 2019: Tuxton China, Inc with Vice President of Business Development Jennifer Rolander

Jennifer Rolander of Tuxton ChinaTuxton China Inc., a leading tabletop supplier to the foodservice industry, will again (for the 4th year) partner with C-CAP, the Careers through Culinary Arts Program, to raise vitally needed funds. By purchasing Tuxton products during September, Tuxton will make a generous donation to help provide thousands of high school students across the United States with scholarships, training, internships and much more.

2019 marks the 20th Anniversary of Tuxton!

“At Tuxton, giving back is an important part of our company’s core values, and our continuing partnership with the Careers through Culinary Arts Program gives us the opportunity to help disadvantaged high school students become part of our industry, says Vice President of Business Development Jennifer Rolander. Our continued support of this organization as one of our “Tuxton Cares” partners is a priority for us, and we are looking forward to providing funds for scholarships and their competition plates for years to come!

Tuxton’s Vice President of Business Development, Jennifer Rolander, joins us with the details.

Play

August 24: Plymouth Gin, Lincoln Carson, A Nourished Spirit, Tuxton China, Zapien’s Salsa Grill

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Plymouth Gin with Global Brand Ambassador Sebastian Hamilton-Mudge
Segment Three: Executive Chef / Partner Lincoln Carson, Bon Temps, Los Angeles
Segment Four: Preview of “A Nourished Spirit” Series at Double Take & Kimpton Palomar Hotel, Los Angeles
Segment Five: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish with “Ask the Chef”
Segment Six: Tuxton China, Inc with Vice President of Business Development Jennifer Rolander
Segment Seven: Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill

Now an enticing preview of this Saturday’s delectable 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.

The classic martini never went out of style and gin is making a resurgence in the cocktail world. Plymouth Gin (dating to 1793) is closely tied to the evolution of many of the cocktail world’s significant libations. Guiding us is Plymouth Gin’s Global Brand Ambassador, Sebastian Hamilton-Mudge.

Lincoln Carson is the Chef/Partner of the ambitious Bon Temps Los Angeles restaurant located next to the Firehouse Hotel in the Arts District adjacent to Downtown Los Angeles. An all-day restaurant Bon Temps reimagines a modern French brasserie with industrial roots. From morning until late-night, the menu is refined with an attention to detail that nods to Chef Lincoln Carson’s lineage working in internationally-acclaimed restaurants. We entice Chef Lincoln out of his busy kitchens for a chat.

“Write. Create. Imbibe. Connect”

“A Nourished Spirit is a four-part writing workshop (August 22, September 26, October 17 and November 14) curated for the Double Take at the Kimpton Palomar hotel in Westwood using craft cocktails and distinguished wines as our inspiration. Each evening includes curated libations, light bites and all you need to connect pen to paper.” The Creative Team, including Producer Jayne Portnoy, joins us with the specifics.

Our always on the go Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel of The Slapfish Restaurant Group, joins us with another installment of “Ask the Chef.” Chef Andrew responds to your questions.

Tuxton China Inc., a leading tabletop supplier to the foodservice industry, will again (for the 4th year) partner with C-CAP, the Careers through Culinary Arts Program, to raise vitally needed funds. By purchasing Tuxton products during September, Tuxton will make a generous donation to help provide thousands of high school students across the United States with scholarships, training, internships and much more. Tuxton’s Vice President of Business Development, Jennifer Rolander, joins us with the details.

Once a year Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill in Pico Rivera hosts a series of Hatch Chile-themed events to celebrate the famous New Mexican spicy and savory pepper. First up is Chef Marco’s Hatch pepper Cooking Demonstration on Tuesday evening, August 27th from 6 to 8:00 p.m. Zapien’s will then host a daytime Hatch Chile Roast on September 7th were supplies of the roasted Hatch Chiles can be picked up by the case. The guest selects the level of spicy desired ranging from mild to hot. Also on Saturday, September 7th from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. join Chef Marco and Zapien’s Salsa Grill for their special Hatch Chile Brunch featuring over ten Hatch Chile inspired dishes. We’ll entice Chef Marco away from the chile roaster for a chat.

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

Sebastian Hamilton-Mudge is the brand ambassador for Plymouth GinThe classic martini never went out of style and gin is making a resurgence in the cocktail world. Plymouth Gin (dating to 1793) is closely tied to the evolution of many of the cocktail world’s significant libations.

“Gin appears in cocktail guides as early as 1900, and by 1930, was ubiquitous in the influential The Savoy Cocktail Book. In modern times, It’s employed in mixed drinks that originated both in their initial form with Plymouth Gin and also ones where an ambiguous call for “gin” has led to many cocktail makers reaching for Plymouth Gin.”

As Global Brand Ambassador, Sebastian Hamilton-Mudge has travelled the world, absorbing and influencing cocktail culture wherever he goes, sharing his deep knowledge of Gin and Cocktails.

He is regularly referenced in press and articles around the World and his book on the classic Pink Gin cocktail is available in the Angostura distillery in Trinidad, while his writing on the brand and classic cocktail history with award winning writer Aaron Goldfarb and Punch Creative.

The Gin Companion is available online to buy.

Guiding us is Plymouth Gin’s Global Brand Ambassador, Sebastian Hamilton-Mudge.

Lincoln Carson of Bon TempsLincoln Carson is the Chef/Partner of the ambitious Bon Temps Los Angeles restaurant located next to the Firehouse Hotel in the Arts District adjacent to Downtown Los Angeles.

“An all-day restaurant Bon Temps reimagines a modern French brasserie with industrial roots. From morning until late-night, the menu is refined with an attention to detail that nods to Chef Lincoln Carson’s lineage working in internationally-acclaimed restaurants.  Bon Temps is for the neighborhood and a place for the downtown community to break bread in a space that pays homage to the old and new.”

“Chef Lincoln Carson is a veteran pastry chef whose career spans almost three decades and he is best known for his eight-year tenure as the corporate pastry chef for The Mina Group, while his culinary resume also includes stints at internationally-acclaimed restaurants such as Le Bernardin and La Cote Basque. Carson was responsible for all facets of The Mina Group’s pastry, dessert and bread programs in addition to opening 18 new restaurants during his time there.”

“Set within the former Heinz testing kitchen of downtown Los Angeles, Bon Temps sets out to break down the distinction between back and front of house all while showcasing the beautiful tension between warm and cold materials. The guest immediately feels part of something larger than simply a dining experience, rather the sounds of the open kitchen combined with a sense of functional utility set forth by the aluminum furniture all point towards the expression of a transparent and honest dining experience driven by Chef Lincoln Carson.”

We entice Chef Lincoln out of his busy kitchens for a chat.

Jayne Portnoy of the Pen2Paper Project“Write. Create. Imbibe. Connect”

A Nourished Spirit is a four-part writing workshop (August 22, September 26, October 17 and November 14) curated for the Double Take at the Kimpton Palomar hotel in Westwood using craft cocktails and distinguished wines as our inspiration. Each evening includes curated libations, light bites and all you need to connect pen to paper.”

The Pen2Paper Project aims to connect people and create community through the art of letter writing and journaling. A Nourished Spirit is a four-part writing series curated by Pen2Paper for Double Take that incorporates cocktail and food pairings into the creative process.

Tickets are $30 per workshop and include food & drink pairings, journal and 15% dining discount at Double Take.

Producer Jayne Portnoy, Double Take’s Lead Bartender Sarah Mengoni and Hotel Palomar’s & Double Take’s Executive Chef Paul Gregory join us with the details.

Andy Harris and Andrew Gruel at the Fifth Anniversary of the SoCal Restaurant ShowOur always on the go Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel of The Slapfish Restaurant Group,” joins us with another installment of “Ask the Chef.” Chef Andrew responds to your questions.

Plant-based seafood substitutes are coming into the consumer marketplace. It’s a huge subject of spirited conversation and has been in the news recently. Chef Andrew shares his thoughts.

Jennifer Rolander of Tuxton ChinaTuxton China Inc., a leading tabletop supplier to the foodservice industry, will again (for the 4th year) partner with C-CAP, the Careers through Culinary Arts Program, to raise vitally needed funds. By purchasing Tuxton products during September, Tuxton will make a generous donation to help provide thousands of high school students across the United States with scholarships, training, internships and much more.

2019 marks the 20th Anniversary of Tuxton!

“At Tuxton, giving back is an important part of our company’s core values, and our continuing partnership with the Careers through Culinary Arts Program gives us the opportunity to help disadvantaged high school students become part of our industry, says Vice President of Business Development Jennifer Rolander. Our continued support of this organization as one of our “Tuxton Cares” partners is a priority for us, and we are looking forward to providing funds for scholarships and their competition plates for years to come!

Tuxton’s Vice President of Business Development, Jennifer Rolander, joins us with the details.

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and TaqueriaOnce a year Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill in Pico Rivera hosts a series of Hatch Chile-themed events to celebrate the famous New Mexican spicy and savory pepper. First up is Chef Marco’s Hatch pepper Cooking Demonstration on Tuesday evening, August 27th from 6 to 8:00 p.m. Guests will receive copies of all the Hatch-themed recipes including Drink of the Day, Appetizers, Salad, Entrees and Dessert. The seated Dinner features all the items demonstrated by Chef Marco. Guests also receive a gift certificate for a complimentary meal at Zapien’s Salsa Grill on a future visit.

Zapien’s will then host a daytime Hatch Chile Roast on September 7th were supplies of the roasted Hatch Chiles can be picked up by the case. The guest selects the level of spicy desired ranging from mild to hot. Also on Saturday, September 7th from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. join Chef Marco and Zapien’s Salsa Grill for their special Hatch Chile Brunch featuring over ten incredible Hatch Chile inspired dishes.

We’ll entice Chef Marco away from the chile roaster for a chat.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Plymouth Gin with Global Brand Ambassador Sebastian Hamilton-Mudge
Segment Three: Executive Chef / Partner Lincoln Carson, Bon Temps, Los Angeles
Segment Four: Preview of “A Nourished Spirit” Series at Double Take & Kimpton Palomar Hotel, Los Angeles
Segment Five: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish with “Ask the Chef”
Segment Six: Tuxton China, Inc with Vice President of Business Development Jennifer Rolander
Segment Seven: Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill

Show 274, May 19, 2018: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris

Now a provocative preview of this Saturday’s tantalizing show. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a pretty good thing…

Creative potluck makes for inspired dinner parties. Ali Rosen (founder & host of Potluck with Ali Rosen, a television show and active website) brings it all together in her debut cookbook, BRING IT! – Tried and True Recipes for Potlucks and Casual Entertaining. We’re in the kitchen with Ali.

The Lobster (revived in 1999) is the long-running, fine-dining restaurant located on the land side of the landmark Santa Monica Pier. Recently installed there as executive chef is culinary celebrity Govind Armstrong. Chef Govind joins us along with the new General Manager, hospitality veteran Will Holt.

Long Beach’s Proper’s Pickles is an unlikely local gourmet specialty food product success story. The Noori Brothers (Bijan & Pejmon) are insurance brokers. Growing up their Family pickled all the extra veggies in their home kitchen. Four years ago the Brothers perfected their recipes and starting selling at one Long Beach Farmers Markets. Today they are available at retail in Gelson’s and select Bristol Farms, and produce some 1,500 to 2,000 jars a month. We’re talking about the art of pickling with Pejmon Noori.

Chefs’ Toys is no stranger to the “SoCal Restaurant Show.” Starting with a passion for food, Chefs’ Toys began in 1988 (founded by Chef Steve Dickler) with a genuine desire to help other Chefs. In 2003 foodservice equipment veteran Mike Krepistman folded his restaurant equipment supply firm into Chefs’ Toys and became a partner. From humble beginnings to an award-winning foodservice enterprise, Chefs’ Toys business philosophy has never wavered. Earlier this year TriMark acquired Chefs’ Toys. We’ll get the update directly from principals Steve Dickler and Mike Krepistman.

Memorial Day weekend, Smorgasburg LA has teamed up with world renowned burger expert George Motz for its 2nd annual Burger Day on Sunday, May 27. Motz’s first burger popup at Smorgasburg LA this past December was such a success that he is headed back to the market for a second time, and this time with some of his most talented friends. The Host of Travel Channel‘s Burger Land and author of Hamburger America ( revised and updated 3rd Edition just out) has curated the best burgers from LA and beyond to popup at Smorgasburg LA for one day only from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. It’s a two napkin affair!

Several years ago Chef Ricardo Zarate created quite a local foodie sensation with his Mo-chica restaurant located within walking distance of USC in the Mercado la Paloma. The menu was modern interpretations of traditional Peruvian comfort food. Currently Chef Ricardo operates Rosaline in Los Angeles and the recently debuted Once in the Palazzo Resort in Las Vegas. Chef Ricardo is our guest.

Chef Andrew Gruel is back with his “Ask the Chef” commentary. Chef Andrew was a judge at C-CAP’s (Careers through Culinary Arts Program) annual scholarship competition for area High School seniors this week. On Monday the culinary scholarships will be awarded to the fortunate student winners at the annual Scholarship Breakfast at Downtown L.A.’s Jonathan Club. This is the first time Chef Andrew has participated in judging this spirited competition. We’ll get his observations.

Program Note:
Our distinguished emeritus Co-host, culinary celebrity Chef Jet Tila, debuts as Alton Brown’s Floor Reporter on the reboot of Food Network’s long-running original Iron Chef America. The launch of the 10-episode new season is Sunday night, May 20th on Food Network. Take a look at the preview trailer.

All of this and much more absolute deliciousness on today’s overflowing show!

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Show 274, May 19, 2018: Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group

Andrew Gruel and his son WilliamChef Andrew Gruel is back with his Ask the Chef commentary. Chef Andrew was a judge this week (along with other high-profile area chefs) at C-CAP’s (Careers through Culinary Arts Program) annual scholarship competition for at-risk area High School seniors. The judging took place at the state-of-the-art teaching kitchens at Mission College.

On Monday 36 culinary scholarships for graduating High School Seniors (plus 4 Alumni and 2 Junior) will be awarded to the fortunate and talented student winners at the annual Scholarship Awards Breakfast at Downtown L.A.’s Jonathan Club. This is the first time Chef Andrew has participated in judging this spirited competition. We’ll get his observations.

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May 19: Ali Rosen, Govind Armstrong, Proper’s Pickles, Chefs’ Toys, George Motz, Ricardo Zarate

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Ali Rosen, author of bring it!
Segment Three: Executive Chef Govind Armstrong and General Manager Will Holt, The Lobster, Santa Monica
Segment Four: Pejmon Noori, Proper’s Pickles, Long Beach
Segment Five: Steve Dickler & Mike Krepistman, TriMark Chefs’ Toys
Segment Six: Hamburger America’s George Motz on George Motz’s Burger Day at Smorgasburg LA
Segment Seven: Chef Ricardo Zarate, Once at The Palazzo Resort, Las Vegas
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group

Now a provocative preview of this Saturday’s tantalizing show. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a pretty good thing…

Creative potluck makes for inspired dinner parties. Ali Rosen (founder & host of Potluck with Ali Rosen, a television show and active website) brings it all together in her debut cookbook, BRING IT! – Tried and True Recipes for Potlucks and Casual Entertaining. We’re in the kitchen with Ali.

The Lobster (revived in 1999) is the long-running, fine-dining restaurant located on the land side of the landmark Santa Monica Pier. Recently installed there as executive chef is culinary celebrity Govind Armstrong. Chef Govind joins us along with the new General Manager, hospitality veteran Will Holt.

Long Beach’s Proper’s Pickles is an unlikely local gourmet specialty food product success story. The Noori Brothers (Bijan & Pejmon) are insurance brokers. Growing up their Family pickled all the extra veggies in their home kitchen. Four years ago the Brothers perfected their recipes and starting selling at one Long Beach Farmers Markets. Today they are available at retail in Gelson’s and select Bristol Farms, and produce some 1,500 to 2,000 jars a month. We’re talking about the art of pickling with Pejmon Noori.

Chefs’ Toys is no stranger to the “SoCal Restaurant Show.” Starting with a passion for food, Chefs’ Toys began in 1988 (founded by Chef Steve Dickler) with a genuine desire to help other Chefs. In 2003 foodservice equipment veteran Mike Krepistman folded his restaurant equipment supply firm into Chefs’ Toys and became a partner. From humble beginnings to a foodservice enterprise, Chefs’ Toys business philosophy has never wavered. Last year TriMark acquired Chefs’ Toys. We’ll get the update directly from principals Steve Dickler and Mike Krepistman.

Memorial Day weekend, Smorgasburg LA has teamed up with world renowned burger expert George Motz for its 2nd annual Burger Day on Sunday, May 27. Motz’s first burger popup at Smorgasburg LA this past December was such a success that he is headed back to the market for a second time, and this time with some of his most talented friends. The Host of Travel Channel’s Burger Land and author of Hamburger America has curated the best burgers from LA and beyond to popup at Smorgasburg LA for one day only from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. It’s a two napkin affair!

Several years ago Chef Ricardo Zarate created quite a foodie sensation with his Mo-chica restaurant located within walking distance of USC in the Mercado la Paloma. The menu was modern interpretations of traditional Peruvian comfort food. Currently Chef Ricardo operates Rosaline in Los Angeles and the recently debuted Once in the Palazzo Resort in Las Vegas. Chef Ricardo is our guest.

Chef Andrew Gruel is back with his “Ask the Chef” commentary. Chef Andrew was a judge at C-CAP’s (Careers through Culinary Arts Program) annual scholarship competition for area High School seniors this week. On Monday the culinary scholarships will be awarded to the fortunate student winners at the annual Scholarship Breakfast at Downtown L.A.’s Jonathan Club. This is the first time Chef Andrew has participated in judging this spirited competition. We’ll get his observations.

Creative potluck makes for inspired dinner parties. Ali Rosen (founder & host of Potluck with Ali Rosen, a television show and active website) brings it all together in her debut cookbook, BRING IT! – Tried and True Recipes for Potlucks and Casual Entertaining.

Bring It! is the ultimate source for potluck, picnic, or dinner party-worthy dishes that combine simple prep with big taste!

The word “potluck” may inspire memories of church dinners and mystery covered dishes. But today’s potlucks are essentially outsourced dinner partieswhich make gathering around a shared table a cinch. Inside Bring It!,  the reader will find dozens of impressive-looking recipes that come together easily, and are perfect for carrying to any occasion.

Author Ali Rosen has put a long career in the food world to use, drawing on chef and restaurant secrets for easy dishes that will have friends begging for the recipe. Must-have dishes include:

  • Pimento Cheese and Crab Dip
  • Snap Pea Salad with Parmesan and Bacon
  • Pistachio and Anchovy Pasta
  • Short Ribs with Quick Pickled Shallots
  • S’mores Bars

Each recipe includes a note called “How to Bring It,” for make-ahead, reheating, and transport instructions. Flavors are designed for maximum impact, but won’t take hours to cook, or require special ingredients. They come together easily, hold well, and travel beautifully. They’ll have you rethinking the potluck.

Ali is the founder and host of Potluck with Ali Rosen, a television show and website dedicated to sharing the best and brightest in food. Potluck airs on NYC Life and its videos have appeared on HuffPost, Edible, and People.  Potluck was nominated for an Emmy as well as two IACP awards. She is from Charleston but currently lives in New York City with her young son & husband.

We’re potlucking in the kitchen with Ali.

Chef Govind Armstrong of Post and BeamThe Lobster is the long-running, fine-dining restaurant located on the land side of the landmark Santa Monica Pier. Recently installed there as executive chef is culinary celebrity Govind Armstrong.

Situated at the corner of Ocean Boulevard and the Santa Monica Pier, The Lobster seafood restaurant is an internationally recognized dining destination that is as much a part of Santa Monica’s history as the pier itself. Originally opened in 1923, it wasn’t until dishwasher-turned-owner, Mateo Castillo took the helm in 1950 that The Lobster became the quintessential “seafood shack,” so beloved by LA residents and tourists alike throughout the 1950’s, 60’s and 70’s.

The Lobster shut its doors for several years in the 1980’s and 90’s, before again being reinvented, expanded and reopened by a family of new investors in 1999. While the original structure was incorporated into the new building’s main entrance, The Lobster as it stands today is a modernly appointed, two-story cantilevered building with glass walls and seating for hundreds.

Chef Govind Armstrong comes to The Lobster with a background that includes training in some of the most famous restaurants in the world. California-born, raised in Costa Rica, and educated in Los Angeles and Europe under culinary legends including Wolfgang Puck, Mark Peel and Susan Feniger, Chef Govind is a master of California Cuisine. As an advocate for food sustainability, Chef Govind is committed to serving dishes that are crafted with only the freshest, locally sourced, and responsibly farmed ingredients.

Chef Govind’s menu takes the seafood dishes at The Lobster in a culinary direction that is sophisticated, yet approachable. With the focus on flavor and a perfect balance of taste and texture, his dishes are updated daily to account for ingredient availability, quality and creative license.

Chef Govind joins us along with the new General Manager, hospitality veteran Will Holt.

Bijan and Pejmon NooriLong Beach’s Proper’s Pickles is an unlikely local gourmet specialty food product success story. The Noori Brothers (Bijan & Pejmon) are insurance brokers. Growing up their Family pickled all the extra veggies in their home kitchen. In early 2014 the Brothers perfected their recipes and starting selling at one Long Beach Farmers Markets. Today they are available at retail in Gelson’s and select Bristol Farms, and produce some 1,500 to 2,000 jars a month. We’re talking about the art of pickling with Pejmon Noori.

The two brothers had already been making pickles for a long time under the guidance of their father, who was known for pickling anything and everything. Bijan and Pejmon also have been known to venture into unknown pickling territory for a few of their best customers, including products like Pickled Sweet Maui Onion with Habanero. Even their Famous Mixed Jar uses Persian Cucumber as opposed to your traditional Pickling Cucumber.

“You will never see dry dill seed or pepper-flakes floating at the bottom of your jar, but you will see pieces of fresh dill and large cloves of fresh garlic. While most pickling companies think it is okay for their products to be kept on dry shelves for months at a time, Proper’s Pickle believes in cold storage only. Proper’s Pickle is also a very strong believer in using only natural ingredients so they can deliver the vegetables and peppers they use in their best form.”

“There is only one drawback to developing the crispiest, freshest-tasting pickles on the planet: Anyone who tries them will never again enjoy just any ole’ pickle. Anyone who has tasted a Proper’s Pickle will always crave something better. Because “We Make a Proper Pickle.””

Steve Dickler of Chefs ToysChefs’ Toys is no stranger to the listeners of the “SoCal Restaurant Show.” Starting with a passion for food, Chefs’ Toys began in 1988 (founded by Chef Steve Dickler) with a genuine desire to help other Chefs.

In 2003 foodservice equipment veteran Mike Krepistman folded his restaurant equipment supply firm into Chefs’ Toys and became a partner. From humble beginnings to a foodservice enterprise, Chefs’ Toys business philosophy has never wavered. Last year TriMark acquired Chefs’ Toys.

“Chefs’ Toys is proud to offer time-tested and commercial kitchen approved products from the best manufacturers in the foodservice industry. We are constantly testing and searching for new products to serve our customers’ needs. You can feel confident that when you buy a product from Chefs’ Toys it has been vetted, tested, and will meet your expectations. Although our roots are firmly planted in Southern California, our customer base continues to expand nationally.”

“With the acquisition of a major restaurant design firm in 2015, Chefs’ Toys beefed up its talent pool for consulting and design. As a result, we offer complete design services for restaurants, commercial kitchens and bars. From front of house to the most complex kitchen design requirements, equipment installation, and foodservice supplies fulfillment, our staff provides turnkey solutions for the foodservice industry.”

We’ll get the update directly from principals Steve Dickler and Mike Krepistman.

George MotzMemorial Day weekend, Smorgasburg LA has teamed up with world renowned burger expert George Motz for its 2nd annual Burger Day on Sunday, May 27. Motz’s first burger popup at Smorgasburg LA this past December was such a success that he is headed back to the market for a second time, and this time with some of his most talented friends.

The Host of Travel Channel‘s Burger Land and author of Hamburger America has curated the best burgers from LA and beyond to popup at Smorgasburg LA for one day only from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Guests should expect burgers in the form of classic takes to mouthwatering modern renditions from six popup vendors, plus burger specials from Smorgasburg LA’s weekly vendors and more.

To add to the festivities Motz will be serving his famous Oklahoma Fried Onion Burger (a smashed patty with thin sliced sweet onion).

It’s definitely a two napkin affair!

Ricardo Zarate of Mo-Chica and PiccaSeveral years ago Chef Ricardo Zarate created quite a foodie sensation with his original Mo-Chica restaurant located within walking distance of USC in the Mercado la Paloma. The menu was modern interpretations of traditional Peruvian comfort food.

Currently Chef Ricardo operates Rosaline in Los Angeles and the recently debuted Once in the Palazzo Resort in Las Vegas.

Once is a one-of-a-kind Peruvian Nikkei dining experience from Chef Ricardo Zarate. Once (on-seh), which means ’11’ in Spanish and symbolizes Ricardo Zarate’s spot in his line of 13 siblings, is inspired by the food of his native Peru.

Drawing distinct flavors from both Peru and Japan, along with the comforting dishes of Chef Ricardo Zarate’s childhood, the menu includes dishes such as Big Eye Tuna Sashimi Ceviche, with black truffle and kizami tigers milk; Arroz Chaufa, Peruvian fried rice, snow crab, yuzu aioli and crispy calamari; and Ox Tail Bibimbap, with black mint stew, tacu tacu rice, fried egg and plantains. To compliment the menu, there are 11 signature cocktails, including a Rum & Cola “slushee” machine for an irreverent, Vegas-style twist on a boozy classic.

Dinner nightly with the recently introduced Brunch on Weekends.

Andrew Gruel and his son WilliamChef Andrew Gruel is back with his Ask the Chef commentary. Chef Andrew was a judge this week at C-CAP’s (Careers through Culinary Arts Program) annual scholarship competition for at-risk area High School seniors.

On Monday the culinary scholarships will be awarded to the fortunate student winners at the annual Scholarship Awards Breakfast at Downtown L.A.’s Jonathan Club. This is the first time Chef Andrew has participated in judging this spirited competition. We’ll get his observations.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Ali Rosen, author of bring it!
Segment Three: Executive Chef Govind Armstrong and General Manager Will Holt, The Lobster, Santa Monica
Segment Four: Pejmon Noori, Proper’s Pickles, Long Beach
Segment Five: Steve Dickler & Mike Krepistman, TriMark Chefs’ Toys
Segment Six: Hamburger America’s George Motz on George Motz’s Burger Day at Smorgasburg LA
Segment Seven: Chef Ricardo Zarate, Once at The Palazzo Resort, Las Vegas
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group