Show 506, January 7, 2023: Donald Contursi, Founder, Lip Smacking Foodie Tours and Finger Licking Foodie Tours, Las Vegas Part One

Donald Contursi of Lipsmacking Foodie Tours

“In just a short time, Donald Contursi’s Lip Smacking Foodie Tours has grown into the premier culinary walking tour operator in Las Vegas, garnering not only loyal fans but outstanding accolades. Its variety of tours offer guests personalized service and VIP access to the best tables in the house at the city’s most acclaimed restaurants – all without the hassle of waiting in lines or making reservations.”

“Each tour is led by an expert guide who entertains guests with insider knowledge about the sights along the way. At each of four restaurant stops on The Strip or downtown, guests indulge in signature dishes, as well as receive a warm welcome from the chefs. Guests can sit beside different patrons at every stop, gaining new friends and networking connections. The tours are perfect for everyone from locals to tourists to business travelers, including corporate groups of up to 250.” Guests can even add a helicopter ride touring the famed Las Vegas Strip to cap off the evening.

“The sister entity, Finger Licking Foodie Tours, was founded by Donald Contursi, founder and president of the wildly successful award-winning Lip Smacking Foodie Tours. Finger Licking Foodie Tours offers lighthearted, self-guided casual culinary walking tours on the Strip and through some of Vegas’ most distinctive neighborhoods, with stops at three top restaurants to enjoy a parade of signature dishes at each, all with VIP service. They are self-guided with an innovative e-guide included. Each tour introduces guests to some of the city’s most celebrated and irresistible eateries.”  Options for the self-guided foodie tours include Downtown, Arts District, Chinatown, Green Valley Resort, Tivoli Village, Virgin Hotel, Aria Resort & Casino and Park MGM. There is also a Chicago self-guided tour of three of the classic deep-dish pizza establishments along the Magnificent Mile.

Donald Contursi takes a break from hosting his VIP tours and joins us.

Show 506, January 7, 2023: Donald Contursi, Founder, Lip Smacking Foodie Tours and Finger Licking Foodie Tours, Las Vegas Part Two

Donald Contursi of Lipsmacking Foodie Tours

“In just a short time, Donald Contursi’s Lip Smacking Foodie Tours has grown into the premier culinary walking tour operator in Las Vegas, garnering not only loyal fans but outstanding accolades. Its variety of tours offer guests personalized service and VIP access to the best tables in the house at the city’s most acclaimed restaurants – all without the hassle of waiting in lines or making reservations.”

“Each tour is led by an expert guide who entertains guests with insider knowledge about the sights along the way. At each of four restaurant stops on The Strip or downtown, guests indulge in signature dishes, as well as receive a warm welcome from the chefs. Guests can sit beside different patrons at every stop, gaining new friends and networking connections. The tours are perfect for everyone from locals to tourists to business travelers, including corporate groups of up to 250.” Guests can even add a helicopter ride touring the famed Las Vegas Strip from the air to cap off the evening.

“The sister entity, Finger Licking Foodie Tours, was founded by Donald Contursi, founder and president of the wildly successful award-winning Lip Smacking Foodie Tours. Finger Licking Foodie Tours offers lighthearted, self-guided casual culinary walking tours on the Strip and through some of Vegas’ most distinctive neighborhoods, with stops at three top restaurants to enjoy a parade of signature dishes at each, all with VIP service. They are self-guided with an innovative e-guide included. Each tour introduces guests to some of the city’s most celebrated and irresistible eateries.”  Options for the self-guided foodie tours include Downtown, Arts District, Chinatown, Green Valley Resort, Tivoli Village, Virgin Hotel, Aria Resort & Casino and Park MGM. There is also a Chicago self-guided tour of three of the classic deep-dish pizza establishments along the Magnificent Mile.

Last year Don inaugurated (via shuttle transportation) a series of Specially Focused Food Tours concentrating on a popular menu item and designed for Locals. Sold out specialty tours so far include Pizza and BBQ. More adventures are on the horizon including a properly decadent dessert experience.… Each guest also gets the gift of a highlight video of the memorable foodie adventure.

Donald Contursi takes a second break from hosting his VIP tours and continues with us.

Show 479, June 18, 2022: Journalist Anne Marie Panoringan, The Voice of OC’s Food Columnist Part One

Food Journalist Anne Marie Panoringan

Anne Marie Panoringan is Voice of OC’s well-informed food columnist. She reports industry news, current events and trends. The column publishes every other Friday.

Anne Marie joins us in-studio to talk about her recent experience in Chicago attending the James Beard Foundation’s Media Awards (June 11th) honoring excellence in Books, Broadcast Media and Journalism. Anne Marie served as a judge for the Journalism Awards as part of the Media Awards. She also shares some of her top Chicago dining adventures.

Show 479, June 18, 2022: Journalist Anne Marie Panoringan, The Voice of OC’s Food Columnist Part Two

Food Journalist Anne Marie Panoringan

Anne Marie Panoringan is Voice of OC’s well-informed food columnist. She reports industry news, current events and trends. The column publishes every other Friday. Anne Marie continues with us.

As part of being in Chicago for the James Beard Foundation’s Media Awards on June 11th Anne Marie explored a bit of Chicago’s vibrant dining scene. She shares her memorable meals at the bar and lounge at Oriole (2 Michelin Stars,) Eleven City Diner (a contemporary take on a Jewish Deli) and the Noble Fat booth for a bao bun at the Green City Farmers Market in Lincoln Park.

In her June 3rd column Anne Marie recounts her participation in a cooking program (MaxLove’s Fierce Foods Academy) geared toward cancer patients and their families, but, along the way, learned how its overall theme is much more universal.

Show 418, March 27, 2021: ArT Wine Preserver® Founder Ryan Frederickson

Ryan Fredrickson of ArT Wine Preserver

“Winemakers and restaurateurs agree. There’s an art to preserving wine. While you may have heard it’s important to let wine “breathe,” this causes oxygen to degrade the bottle the longer it’s been opened. Oxidation can spoil opened bottles of wine as quickly as 24 hours after opening.”

“Argon gas is the preferred method by winemakers to prevent oxidation that spoils wine. ArT Wine Preserver® is an affordable, recyclable wine saver (packaged in a convenient can) that uses pure argon gas to displace oxygen.”

“ArT Wine Preserver® is on a mission to reduce waste, starting with wine. According to the National Resources Defense Council, wine waste is part of the 40 percent of food that is wasted in the United States every day. In the United States alone, the company estimates home consumers pour more than $1.27 billion dollars of wine down the drain, and restaurants pour out another 18+ million bottles!”

“ArT Wine Preserver® Founder Ryan Frederickson’s former career as an engineer took a different path after a vacation in California wine country. After learning about how much work goes into producing each bottle, and just how much waste occurs due to oxidation, he decided to put his previous experience working in the argon gas industry to use.”

“Naming the product ArT, short for “Argon Technology, the wine preserving canister contains 100% pure argon gas to keep opened bottles of wine fresh up to three times longer.”

Founder Ryan Frederickson joins us with wine glass in hand.

Show 391, September 19, 2020: Food Journalist Steve Dolinsky, ABC 7 TV’s (Chicago) “Hungry Hound” Part One

Steve Dolinsky and Andreew GruelFood journalist Steve Dolinsky, ABC 7 TV’s “Hungry Hound” in Chicago, is the recipient of an impressive 13 James Beard Foundation Awards for journalistic excellence.

In addition to his considerable journalistic talents Steve in an accomplished podcaster and pizza afficionado. “Every other Friday, Steve talks to some of the world’s greatest pizzaiolos, bakers and artisans about their craft (in the Pizza City, USA podcast.) Hear their backstories, discover their secrets, techniques and inspirations, while listening to their meticulous process as they describe how they make their truly sublime pizzas.”

The James Beard Foundation Awards Gala is in Chicago on Friday evening, September 25th in virtual format to be broadcast via Twitter. Steve previews the dramatically reformatted (and virtual) 2020 James Beard Foundation Awards Gala.

Restaurant and Chef awards in 23 categories have been nominated. None of these awards will be announced. Instead, the previously announced winners will be honored in the categories of America’s Classics, Lifetime Achievement, Humanitarian of the Year, Design Icon and Leadership Awards. All the previously announced Nominees (in twenty-three categories) will also be honored as a group according to the James Beard Foundation.

Steve Dolinsky joins us to untangle the convoluted specifics.

Show 391, September 19, 2020: Food Journalist Steve Dolinsky, ABC 7 TV’s (Chicago) “Hungry Hound” Part Two

Steve Dolinsky and Andreew GruelFood journalist Steve Dolinsky, ABC 7 TV’s “Hungry Hound” in Chicago, is the recipient of an impressive 13 James Beard Foundation Awards for journalistic excellence.

In addition to his considerable journalistic talents Steve in an accomplished podcaster and pizza afficionado. “Every other Friday, Steve talks to some of the world’s greatest pizzaiolos, bakers and artisans about their craft (in the Pizza City, USA podcast.) Hear their backstories, discover their secrets, techniques and inspirations, while listening to their meticulous process as they describe how they make their truly sublime pizzas.”

The James Beard Foundation Awards Gala is in Chicago on Friday evening, September 25th in virtual format to be broadcast via Twitter. Steve previews the dramatically reformatted (and virtual) 2020 James Beard Foundation Awards Gala and what the future holds.

Restaurant and Chef awards in 23 categories have been nominated. None of these awards will be announced. Instead, the previously announced winners will be honored in the categories of America’s Classics, Lifetime Achievement, Humanitarian of the Year, Design Icon and Leadership Awards. All the previously announced Nominees (in twenty-three categories) will also be honored as a group according to the James Beard Foundation.

Steve Dolinsky continues with us to untangle the convoluted specifics.

Show 371, May 2, 2020: Food Journalist Steve Dolinsky, ABC 7 TV’s (Chicago) “Hungry Hound”

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

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

Steve shares the astonishing news that Chef Abe Conlon’s award-winning Fat Rice restaurant in Chicago is now reinventing itself permanently as Super Fat Rice Mart preparing upscale meal kits for home cooking based on Fat Rice menu items.

Show 349, November 30, 2019: Executive Chef John Taube, The Hoxton DTLA Part One

John Taube of Sibling Rival at the Hoxton DTLANewly arrived in Downtown Los Angeles in a tastefully restored Beaux Arts building is The Hoxton with sister properties in Williamsburg, Portland, Chicago and International (London, Amsterdam and Paris.) Their 174 rooms are spread across four different size categories from Snug to Biggy, meaning there’s something to suit everyone.

Destination restaurants located at Hoxton properties are a trademark. The Hoxton DTLA has Sibling Rival, the elevated, all-day restaurant with an open kitchen located on the ground floor and Pilot (dinner only) on the rooftop (with eye-catching L.A. skyline views) which also includes the daytime Pilot Bar (daily Happy Hour specials) adjacent to the pool. Coming in 2020 is a Japanese concept located in the basement with a distinct bar program.

All rooms are cleverly designed to make the most of the space, and all come with the same Hox Perks including free fast WiFi, free daily calls to anywhere in the world, coffee, tea, water and milk, and a light breakfast bag delivered to your room.

We’ll meet Executive Chef John Taube, who oversees the ample, in-house culinary portfolio.

Show 322, May 4, 2019: Chicago Food Journalist Steve Dolinsky (ABC 7’s “Hungry Hound”)

Steve Dolinsky and Andreew GruelFood journalist Steve Dolinsky, ABC 7 TV’s “Hungry Hound” in Chicago, is the recipient of an impressive 13 James Beard Foundation Awards for journalistic excellence. The Feed,” the weekly podcast that Steve does with Chef Rick Bayless, was again nominated this year for a Beard Award in the Podcast category. The James Beard Foundation Awards Gala is in Chicago at the Lyric Opera on Monday evening, May 6th.

Steve will preview the 2019 James Beard Foundation Awards Gala and what it means to Chicago to again host such a prestigious event.

“In 2014, Chicago chef/restaurateur Rick Bayless and I launched The Feed Podcast, covering the world of food from our professional perspectives. Every show is full of different segments, some from Chicago and others from far-flung places around the world we both travel to. In its first year, the show won a Beard Award for Best Podcast. More recently, I’ve begun curating and leading highly specialized culinary experiences, including international tours. In 2018, I wrote my first book, “Pizza City USA: 101 Reasons Why Chicago is America’s Greatest Pizza Town,” which led to the launch of Pizza City USA Tours and a companion podcast, “Pizza City,” where I talk to some of the greatest pizza makers in the world.”