Show 373, May 16, 2020: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

It’s a time of great concern for all of us and our “SoCal Restaurant Show” mission, until the Covid-19 crisis is fully abated, is to provide reliable and genuinely useful information on how the restaurant business is coping with the rapidly evolving events. With an emphasis on the health, safety and well-being of our listeners we’ll be detailing what the ever-changing range of services restaurants can now provide to their guests. Creativity and adaptability are at the forefront. We’re doing our level best to keep it upbeat…

Chefs and restaurateurs are honestly the most generous people we know. In times of need they are always the very first in generously giving back and meaningfully supporting their communities. Truly remarkable…Right now restaurants urgently need our support to stay afloat. Kindly keep this in mind and please do what you possibly can (as you can afford) to support a community-focused, local restaurant….

As always, we greatly appreciate you being a part of our loyal listening audience. Truly couldn’t do it without the enthusiastic encouragement of the foodie community.

Founded in 1987 by Chef Zov Karamardian, legendary Zov’s Bistro and Bakery in Tustin, CA has become a culinary institution. Serving her unique cuisine that blends contemporary with Eastern Mediterranean influences, in an upscale chic environment. There are also Zov’s restaurants in Newport Coast, Irvine and Anaheim. The Tustin and Newport Coast locations are now serving Family Meals and Takeout Menu items curbside. 2nd generation Karamardian Family member, Armen, joins us with the details and looks to the future.

The enduring Casa Vega is a landmark Mexican restaurant that has been operating in the San Fernando Valley for almost 64 years. It’s located on the familiar Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks and is one of the longest running, continuously family-owned restaurants in greater Los Angeles. Rafael “Ray” Vega opened Casa Vega in 1956 after being inspired by the success of his parents’ earlier restaurant, Café Caliente, which was on Olvera St. and operated throughout the 1930’s. Casa Vega has recently reopened for take-out via advance order online or by telephone.

Proprietress Christy Vega (a 3rd generation restaurateur) pours the Classic Margaritas for us.

Led by chef, author and restaurateur Marcus Samuelsson as national board co-chair, Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP,) celebrating its 30th Anniversary, transforms the lives of underserved high school students and young people locally by helping them pursue their culinary dreams. C-CAP prepares these talented young adults for college, and for careers in the restaurant and hospitality industry. This year Los Angeles awarded $430,131 in scholarships to 34 deserving high school students. Joining us are Food TV’s Chef Monti Carlo (a “Friend of C-CAP”,) college scholarship recipient Emerson Majano, a member of the Senior Class at Santee Education Complex and college scholarship recipient Morena Hernandez, a Senior at Los Angeles High School.

Newport Beach’s highly praised, Fable & Spirit, has reopened in the Via Lido Plaza for takeout service. The public, once again, is able to partake in Chef Executive Chef David Shofner’s imaginative, globally inspired dishes. In addition, Sommelier Ali Coyle presents a curated list of wines offered at exceptional prices, and Director of Spirits Drew Coyle offers a selection of signature cocktails to go. Sommelier & Coyle Family member, Ali, gently pulls the cork for us.

After honing his skills at some of the most influential restaurants in Southern California –including The Eveleigh, Father’s Office, and Umami Restaurant Group—Chef & Proprietor Ted Hopson now brings his diverse experience and curious palate to The Bellwether in Studio City, incorporating Italian, Mediterranean, and Middle Eastern flavors for a culinary spread that proudly crashes borders and challenges convention. His Partner at The Bellwether is Beverage Director Ann-Marie Verdi. At The Bellwether (in normal times,) Verdi creates a beverage program that pleases all palates through both contemporary and classic selections. Chef Ted is our guest to discuss how The Bellwether is coping with the ban on dine-in.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative <strong>“Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Take-out/delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first. 3rd party delivery services seem convenient but they are costly to both consumers and restaurants. A lot more here to explain and better understand. We’ll again “Ask the Chef.”

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness (with proper Social Distancing) on this week’s not-to-miss show!

Play

Show 373, May 16, 2020: Restaurateur Christy Vega, Casa Vega, Sherman Oaks

Christy Vega of Casa VegaThe enduring Casa Vega is a landmark Mexican restaurant that has been operating in the San Fernando Valley for almost 64 years. It’s located on the familiar Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks and is one of the longest running, continuously family-owned restaurants in greater Los Angeles. Rafael “Ray” Vega opened Casa Vega in 1956 after being inspired by the success of his parents’ earlier restaurant, Café Caliente, which was on Olvera St. and operated throughout the 1930’s. Casa Vega has recently reopened for take-out via advance order online or by telephone.

Casa Vega is now open from 12 Noon – 8 p.m. daily. Initially, guests can order directly by phone (818-788-4868) or online via the Casa Vega website. Guests can pick up from their cars – Casa Vega staff will place orders in the trunk or backseat as they wait in the restaurant’s driveway off Ventura Blvd.

Favorites on the take-out menu include Combination Plates and Street Tacos, both served with rice and beans, Taquitos de Juan (chicken flautas), Burritos, four different Family Trays, Chips, Guacamole, Salsa, Kids Meals, and more. In addition to beer and wine, Casa Vega offers its Classic Margarita in a single serving mason jar with ice, ready to drink for $7. Other margarita variations are available for $7-9. The Classic Margarita is also available in a half gallon size for $30.

“Over the years, Casa Vega has remained, at its core, much the same as my father’s original vision,” says Christy Vega. “The menu continues to reflect the offerings originally presented some 64 years ago with slight alterations that speak to today’s culinary tastes. From the menu, to the dim ambiance of the dining room, to the staff—many of which have been with our team for decades—Casa Vega is a testament to my father and the wonderful history he has created. I look forward to continuing to uphold his legacy of service, authentic traditions, and most of all, the love and adoration that emanates throughout every corner of the restaurant and inspires our clients to return time and time again.

Proprietress Christy Vega pours the Classic Margaritas for us.

Play

May 16: Zov’s Bistro and Bakery, Casa Vega, C-CAP with Monti Carlo, Fable & Spirit, Ted Hopson

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Restaurateur Armen Karamardian, Zov’s Bistro & Bakery
Segment Three: Restaurateur Christy Vega, Casa Vega, Sherman Oaks
Segment Four: Chef Monti Carlo with C-CAP Scholarship Recipient Emerson Majano
Segment Five: Chef Monti Carlo with C-CAP Scholarship Recipient Morena Hernandez
Segment Six: Sommelier Ali Coyle, Fable & Spirit, Newport Beach
Segment Seven: Chef & Partner Ted Hopson, The Bellwether, Studio City
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish with “Ask the Chef”

It’s a time of great concern for all of us and our “SoCal Restaurant Show” mission, until the Covid-19 crisis is fully abated, is to provide reliable and genuinely useful information on how the restaurant business is coping with the rapidly evolving events. With an emphasis on the health, safety and well-being of our listeners we’ll be detailing what the ever-changing range of services restaurants can now provide to their guests. Creativity and adaptability are at the forefront. We’re doing our level best to keep it upbeat…

Chefs and restaurateurs are honestly the most generous people we know. In times of need they are always the very first in generously giving back and meaningfully supporting their communities. Truly remarkable…Right now restaurants urgently need our support to stay afloat. Kindly keep this in mind and please do what you possibly can (as you can afford) to support a community-focused, local restaurant….

As always, we greatly appreciate you being a part of our loyal listening audience. Truly couldn’t do it without the enthusiastic encouragement of the foodie community.

Founded in 1987 by Chef Zov Karamardian, legendary Zov’s Bistro and Bakery in Tustin, CA has become a culinary institution. Serving her unique cuisine that blends contemporary with Eastern Mediterranean influences, in an upscale chic environment. There are now also Zov’s restaurants in Newport Coast, Irvine and Anaheim. The Tustin and Newport Coast locations are now serving Family Meals and Takeout Menu items curbside. 2nd generation Karamardian Family member, Armen, joins us with the details and looks to the future.

The enduring Casa Vega is a landmark Mexican restaurant that has been operating in the San Fernando Valley for almost 64 years. It’s located on the familiar Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks and is one of the longest running, continuously family-owned restaurants in greater Los Angeles. Rafael “Ray” Vega opened Casa Vega in 1956 after being inspired by the success of his parents’ earlier restaurant, Café Caliente, which was on Olvera St. and operated throughout the 1930’s. Casa Vega has recently reopened for take-out via advance order online or by telephone.

Proprietress Christy Vega pours the Classic Margaritas for us.

Led by chef, author and restaurateur Marcus Samuelsson as national board co-chair, Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP,) celebrating its 30th Anniversary, transforms the lives of underserved high school students and young people locally by helping them pursue their culinary dreams. C-CAP prepares these talented young adults for college, and for careers in the restaurant and hospitality industry. This year Los Angeles awarded $430,131 in scholarships to 34 deserving high school students. Joining us are Food TV’s Chef Monti Carlo (a “Friend of C-CAP”,) college scholarship recipient Emerson Majano, a member of the Senior Class at Santee Education Complex and college scholarship recipient Morena Hernandez, a Senior at Los Angeles High School.

Newport Beach’s highly praised, Fable & Spirit, has reopened in the Via Lido Plaza for takeout service. The public, once again, is able to partake in Chef Executive Chef David Shofner’s imaginative, globally inspired dishes. In addition, Sommelier Ali Coyle presents a curated list of wines offered at exceptional prices, and Director of Spirits Drew Coyle offers a selection of signature cocktails to go. Sommelier & Coyle Family member, Ali, gently pulls the cork for us.

After honing his skills at some of the most influential restaurants in Southern California –including The Eveleigh, Father’s Office, and Umami Restaurant Group—Chef & Proprietor Ted Hopson now brings his diverse experience and curious palate to The Bellwether in Studio City, incorporating Italian, Mediterranean, and Middle Eastern flavors for a culinary spread that proudly crashes borders and challenges convention. His Partner at The Bellwether is Beverage Director Ann-Marie Verdi. At The Bellwether (in normal times,) Verdi creates a beverage program that pleases all palates through both contemporary and classic selections. Chef Ted is our guest to discuss how The Bellwether is coping with the ban on dine-in.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Take-out/delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first. 3rd party delivery services seem convenient but they are costly to both consumers and restaurants. A lot more here to explain and better understand. We’ll again “Ask the Chef.”

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness (with proper Social Distancing) on this week’s not-to-miss show!

Armen Karamardian of ZovsFounded in 1987 by Chef Zov Karamardian, legendary Zov’s Bistro and Bakery in Tustin, CA has become a culinary institution. Serving her unique cuisine that blends contemporary with Eastern Mediterranean influences, in an upscale, chic environment. There are now also Zov’s restaurants in Newport Coast, Irvine and Anaheim.

The Tustin and Newport Coast locations are serving Family Meals and Takeout Menu items curbside. Zov’s General Store at the Tustin location offers a selection of gourmet groceries for curbside pickup.

“Family support has constantly been Zov’s foundation and inspiration throughout her culinary career. Zov, in addition to her husband, Gary, her son Armen, and her daughter Taleene, have created a rare family business recipe that has taken comforting creations of the family kitchen blended with Chef Zov’s culinary artistry.”

“Over the years, the Bistro in Tustin has greatly expanded into 14,000 sq. ft., encompassing an award-winning bakery, acclaimed Bistro, a luxurious private dining room, specialty foods gourmet market, cooking classes and a busy catering division that brings Zov’s culinary style to homes and special events throughout Southern California.”

2nd Generation Karamardian Family member & restaurateur, Armen, joins us with the details and looks to the future.

Christy Vega of Casa VegaThe enduring Casa Vega is a landmark Mexican restaurant that has been operating in the San Fernando Valley for almost 64 years. It’s located on the familiar Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks and is one of the longest running, continuously family-owned restaurants in greater Los Angeles. Rafael “Ray” Vega opened Casa Vega in 1956 after being inspired by the success of his parents’ earlier restaurant, Café Caliente, which was on Olvera St. and operated throughout the 1930’s. Casa Vega has recently reopened for take-out via advance order online or by telephone.

Casa Vega is now open from 12 Noon – 8 p.m. daily. Initially, guests can order directly by phone (818-788-4868) or online via the Casa Vega website. Guests can pick up from their cars – Casa Vega staff will place orders in the trunk or backseat as they wait in the restaurant’s driveway off Ventura Blvd.

Favorites on the take-out menu include Combination Plates and Street Tacos, both served with rice and beans, Taquitos de Juan (chicken flautas), Burritos, four different Family Trays, Chips, Guacamole, Salsa, Kids Meals, and more. In addition to beer and wine, Casa Vega offers its Classic Margarita in a single serving mason jar with ice, ready to drink for $7. Other margarita variations are available for $7-9. The Classic Margarita is also available in a half gallon size for $30.

“Over the years, Casa Vega has remained, at its core, much the same as my father’s original vision,” says Christy Vega. “The menu continues to reflect the offerings originally presented some 64 years ago with slight alterations that speak to today’s culinary tastes. From the menu, to the dim ambiance of the dining room, to the staff—many of which have been with our team for decades—Casa Vega is a testament to my father and the wonderful history he has created. I look forward to continuing to uphold his legacy of service, authentic traditions, and most of all, the love and adoration that emanates throughout every corner of the restaurant and inspires our clients to return time and time again.

Proprietress Christy Vega pours the Classic Margaritas for us.

The Monti Carlo of Everyday FoodLed by chef, author and restaurateur Marcus Samuelsson as national board co-chair, Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP,) celebrating its 30th Anniversary, transforms the lives of underserved high school students and young people locally by helping them pursue their culinary dreams. C-CAP prepares these talented young adults for college, and for careers in the restaurant and hospitality industry.

This year Los Angeles awarded $430,131 in scholarships to 34 deserving high school students. Joining us is Food TV’s Chef Monti Carlo (a “Friend of C-CAP”) and college scholarship recipients Emerson Majano, a member of the Senior Class at Santee Education Complex and Morena Hernandez, a distinguished Senior at Los Angeles High School.

Founded in 1990 by culinary educator and cookbook author Richard Grausman, C-CAP impacts over 17,500 students a year nationally. Countless C-CAP alumni work throughout the country and are guiding the future leaders of the culinary and hospitality industry.

Sommelier Ali CoyleNewport Beach’s highly praised, Fable & Spirit, has reopened in the Via Lido Plaza for takeout service. The public, once again, is able to partake in Chef Executive Chef David Shofner’s imaginative, globally inspired dishes. In addition, Sommelier Ali Coyle presents a curated list of wines offered at exceptional prices, and Director of Spirits Drew Coyle offers a selection of signature cocktails to go.

Guests will be able to order by phone or online Tuesday through Sunday. Menu, hours and online ordering will be updated on Fable & Spirit’s website. Orders may be placed between Noon and 6 p.m., for pick-up between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. The restaurant will be closed Monday. Contactless curbside pick-up can be requested when placing orders.

“Ours are neighborhood restaurants that have achieved success because of the communities that support them, and we are grateful to reopen to see the reassuring smiles of our friends during this time of uncertainty,” comments Darren Coyle, who owns Fable & Spirit, Dublin 4 Gastropub, and Wineworks for Everyone with his wife, Jean. “We look forward to when we can welcome guests into our dining room again for food, drink and good times, but for now, we will limit service to takeout and strive to share some of the spirit and magic of our family with yours.”

Sommelier & Coyle Family member, Ali, gently pulls the cork for us.

Ann Marie Verdi and Ted Hopson of the Bellwether“After honing his skills at some of the most influential restaurants in Southern California –including The Eveleigh, Father’s Office, and Umami Restaurant Group—Chef & Proprietor Ted Hopson now brings his diverse experience and curious palate to The Bellwether in Studio City, incorporating Italian, Mediterranean, and Middle Eastern flavors for a culinary spread that proudly crashes borders and challenges convention.”

His Partner at The Bellwether is Beverage Director Ann-Marie Verdi. At The Bellwether (in normal times,) Verdi creates a beverage program that pleases all palates through both contemporary and classic selections.

The Bellwether reopened briefly for nighttime curbside pick-up but found it impractical to sustain. Their focus has shifted to preparing wholesome meals for frontline workers and charity groups.

Chef Ted brings us up-to-date.

Chef Andrew Gruel savoring a New Jersey style PizzaOur own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Take-out / Delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first.

On the surface 3rd party delivery services (Uber Eats, Grubhub, DoorDash and Postmates) seem really convenient but they are costly to both consumers and restaurants. A lot more here to explain and better understand. We’ll again, “Ask the Chef.”

Slapfish is hosting Doctors, Nurses, Medical Personnel, Police, Firefighters & EMT’s to a complimentary meal To-Go. Need to be in uniform or have appropriate ID to qualify. The participating Slapfish locations are Huntington Beach, Brea, Irvine and Laguna Beach.

Kids eat free at Slapfish, too, when their parents order Takeout.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Restaurateur Armen Karamardian, Zov’s Bistro & Bakery
Segment Three: Restaurateur Christy Vega, Casa Vega, Sherman Oaks
Segment Four: Chef Monti Carlo with C-CAP Scholarship Recipient Emerson Majano
Segment Five: Chef Monti Carlo with C-CAP Scholarship Recipient Morena Hernandez
Segment Six: Sommelier Ali Coyle, Fable & Spirit, Newport Beach
Segment Seven: Chef & Partner Ted Hopson, The Bellwether, Studio City
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish with “Ask the Chef”

Show 180, July 16, 2016: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris and Chef Andrew Gruel

Andrew Gruel at the AM830 KLAA StudiosExecutive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, LAX, Irvine at UCI and, most recently, Brea, is back as today’s special Guest Host. Last month in Chicago he received Nation’s Restaurant News’ Trendsetter MenuMaster Award for Slapfish.

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

The Ranch Restaurant in Anaheim has a tremendous commitment to using fresh fruit and vegetables in all their preparations. They incredibly have their own farm in Orange where they grow many of the fruits and vegetables used at the bar and on the dinner menu. Executive Chef Michael Rossi actually checks the farm daily to see what can be used fresh from the field on that day’s menu. Restaurant Manager & Mixologist Dan Minjares has recently introduced their new Summer Cocktails. Included is a selection of “Farm Inspired Summer Cocktails.” Dan is with us to explain all the refreshing specifics.

George Motz is an Emmy Award-winning filmmaker, founder of the Food Film Festival, and author of the well-received Hamburger America. He’s a well-traveled “accidental” burger authority with impeccable credentials. Motz’s newest offering is The Great American Burger Book – How to Make Authentic Regional Hamburgers at Home. George puts his well-used spatula down briefly to join us with the hot & juicy details.

The classic Casa Vega is a family-owned Mexican restaurant that has been a Sherman Oaks landmark for 60 years. They are celebrating their 60th Anniversary in style with cocktails and a special seven-course menu this Saturday night, July 16th. It’s a benefit for the L.A. Regional Food Bank. The celebrity guest chef is Baja’s Javier Plascencia. 2nd generation proprietress Christy Vega is our guest.

Chef Eric Samaniego (Bravo TV’s “Best New Restaurant“), formerly of Little Sparrow in Santa Ana, has joined Michael’s On Naples in Long Beach as the award-winning restaurant’s chef de cuisine. In addition to changes in the kitchen, Michael’s on Naples is experiencing an aesthetic transformation as well. The restaurant’s rooftop terrace has been under construction as it undergoes a major expansion and renovation. Chef Eric joins us.

Food waste is inexcusable in restaurants these days. It’s a matter of principle in addition to being part of the green movement. Our own Chef Andrew Gruel will highlight what he does to turn usable items that were formally tossed in the garbage into practical (and tasty) menu items.

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

Play

Show 180, July 16, 2016: Christy Vega, Proprietress Casa Vega, Sherman Oaks, CA

Christy VegaThe classic Casa Vega is a family-owned Mexican restaurant that has been a Sherman Oaks landmark for 60 years. They are celebrating their 60th Anniversary in style with cocktails and a special seven- course menu this Saturday night, July 16th. It’s a benefit for the L.A. Regional Food Bank.

The celebrity guest chef is Baja’s Javier Plascencia (Bracero and Mision 19) He will alternate courses with the Casa Vega culinary team. Think Evo Poached Baja Hiramassa with guacachile, yuzu, crunchy eggplant, and yellow tomato tartar.

Casa Vega is a family-owned Mexican restaurant that has been a Los Angeles landmark for 60 years. Opened in 1956 by Rafael “Ray” Vega, Casa Vega serves authentic Mexican food and drinks in a warm, festive atmosphere. You don’t survive in the highly competitive San Fernando Valley for 60 years unless you give your guests a compelling reason to return and bring their friends.

Today Ray’s daughter, Christina “Christy” Vega (as seen on Food Network’s “Guy’s Grocery Games,” NBC’s “TODAY” Show, CBS’s “This Morning,” ABC’s “The View,” and more) is at the helm of the time-honored restaurant. From crowd-pleasing dishes such as traditional chicken mole, burritos, enchiladas, and tostadas, to tasty house-made margaritas and mojitos (the margarita base is a treasured house-recipe) and mojitos, Casa Vega features an extensive and time-tested menu.

2nd generation proprietress Christy Vega is our guest.

Play

July 17: The Ranch, George Motz, Casa Vega, Eric Samaniego, Andrew Gruel

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris and Chef Andrew Gruel
Segment Two: Dan Minjares, Restaurant Manager and Mixologist, The Ranch Restaurant Part One
Segment Three: Dan Minjares, Restaurant Manager and Mixologist, The Ranch Restaurant Part Two
Segment Four: Burger Authority and filmmaker George Motz, The Great American Burger Book Part One
Segment Five: Burger Authority and filmmaker George Motz, The Great American Burger Book Part Two
Segment Six: Christy Vega, Proprietress Casa Vega, Sherman Oaks, CA
Segment Seven: Chef Eric Samaniego, Chef de Cuisine, Michael’s On Naples, Long Beach
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group, Huntington Beach

Andrew Gruel at the AM830 KLAA StudiosExecutive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, LAX, Irvine at UCI and, most recently, Brea, is back as today’s special Guest Host. Last month in Chicago he received Nation’s Restaurant News’ Trendsetter MenuMaster Award for Slapfish.

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

The Ranch Restaurant in Anaheim has a tremendous commitment to using fresh fruit and vegetables in all their preparations. They incredibly have their own farm in Orange where they grow many of the fruits and vegetables used at the bar and on the dinner menu. Executive Chef Michael Rossi actually checks the farm daily to see what can be used fresh from the field on that day’s menu. Restaurant Manager & Mixologist Dan Minjares has recently introduced their new Summer Cocktails. Included is a selection of “Farm Inspired Summer Cocktails.” Dan is with us to explain all the refreshing specifics.

George Motz is an Emmy Award-winning filmmaker, founder of the Food Film Festival, and author of the well-received Hamburger America. He’s a well-traveled “accidental” burger authority with impeccable credentials. Motz’s newest offering is The Great American Burger Book – How to Make Authentic Regional Hamburgers at Home. George puts his well-used spatula down briefly to join us with the hot & juicy details.

The classic Casa Vega is a family-owned Mexican restaurant that has been a Sherman Oaks landmark for 60 years. They are celebrating their 60th Anniversary in style with cocktails and a special seven-course menu this Saturday night, July 16th. It’s a benefit for the L.A. Regional Food Bank. The celebrity guest chef is Baja’s Javier Plascencia. 2nd generation proprietress Christy Vega is our guest.

Chef Eric Samaniego (Bravo TV’s “Best New Restaurant), formerly of Little Sparrow in Santa Ana, has joined Michael’s On Naples in Long Beach as the award-winning restaurant’s chef de cuisine. In addition to changes in the kitchen, Michael’s on Naples is experiencing an aesthetic transformation as well. The restaurant’s rooftop terrace has been under construction as it undergoes a major expansion and renovation. Chef Eric joins us.

Food waste is inexcusable in restaurants these days. It’s a matter of principle in addition to being part of the green movement. Our own Chef Andrew Gruel will highlight what he does to turn usable items that were formally tossed in the garbage into practical (and tasty) menu items.

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

Dan MinjaresThe Ranch Restaurant in Anaheim has a tremendous commitment to using fresh fruit and vegetables in all their preparations. They incredibly have their own farm (The Farm) in Orange on over two acres of land where they grow many of the fruits and vegetables used at the bar and on the dinner menu. Executive Chef Michael Rossi actually checks the farm daily to see what can be used fresh from the field on that day’s menu.

Restaurant Manager & Mixologist Dan Minjares has recently introduced their new Summer Cocktails. Included is a selection of appealing “Farm Inspired Summer Cocktails” that use citrus, watermelon and strawberries from the farm.

Their Watermelon Mint Mule is watermelon infused Purity Vodka, fresh lime juice, mint leaves and Fever Tree Ginger Beer. It’s served in a properly chilled copper mug.

Dan is with us to explain all the refreshing specifics. Cheers.

The “Best of Award Excellence” (Wine Spectator Magazine) wine program at The Ranch includes a 500 plus bottle list with rare and reserve wines featuring over 30 wines-by-the-glass selections. They feature hand-crafted cocktails, barrel aged cocktails and, when in season, farm-to-glass cocktails from their own heirloom vegetable farm on Edwards Ranch Estates. Draft and bottle beer selections are available as well as specialty martinis, select whiskey, rye, tequila and after dinner drink libations.

George MotzGeorge Motz is an Emmy Award-winning filmmaker, founder of the Food Film Festival, and author of the well-received Hamburger America. He’s a well-traveled “accidental” burger authority with impeccable credentials. Motz’s newest offering is The Great American Burger Book – How to Make Authentic Regional Hamburgers at Home. The Foreward is by Travel Channel’s Chef Andrew Zimmern.

The Great American Burger Book is the first book to showcase a wide range of regional hamburger styles and cooking methods. Author and burger expert George Motz covers traditional grilling techniques as well as how to smoke, steam, poach, and deep-fry burgers based on signature recipes from around the country.

Each colorful chapter is dedicated to a specific regional burger, from the tortilla burger of New Mexico to the classic New York–style pub burger, and from the fried onion burger of Oklahoma to Hawaii’s Loco Moco. Motz provides expert instruction, tantalizing recipes, and vibrant color photography to help you create unique variations on America’s favorite dish in your own home.

George puts his well-used spatula down briefly to join us with the juicy details.

Before George embarks on his cross-country regional burger tour in The Great American Burger Book he shares the recipes for “The Basics.” These include The Griddle-Smashed Classic Cheeseburger, The Flame-Grilled Burger, The Thick Pub Classic Burger and The Patty Melt.

Did you know The Pastrami Burger started right here in Southern California? It’s now a Regional Favorite in Utah. It’s the Greek Connection…Perhaps George will explain.

George Motz, Emmy Award–winning filmmaker and founder of the Food Film Festival, is also the author of Hamburger America and was hailed by the New York Times as a leading authority on hamburgers. His media credits include hosting Burger Land and Made in America (Travel Channel), and he has been a guest on Inside Edition, CBS, CNN, Fox News, and PBS, among others. He lives in Brooklyn.

Christy VegaThe classic Casa Vega is a family-owned Mexican restaurant that has been a Sherman Oaks landmark for 60 years. They are celebrating their 60th Anniversary in style with cocktails and a special seven- course menu this Saturday night, July 16th. It’s a benefit for the L.A. Regional Food Bank.

The celebrity guest chef is Baja’s Javier Plascencia (Bracero.) He will alternate courses with the Casa Vega culinary team. Think Evo Poached Baja Hiramassa with guacachile, yuzu, crunchy eggplant, and yellow tomato tartar.

Casa Vega is a family-owned Mexican restaurant that has been a Los Angeles landmark for 60 years. Opened in 1956 by Rafael “Ray” Vega, Casa Vega serves authentic Mexican food and drinks in a warm, festive atmosphere. Today Ray’s daughter, Christina “Christy” Vega (as seen on Food Network’s “Guy’s Grocery Games,” NBC’s “TODAY” Show, CBS’s “This Morning,” ABC’s “The View,” and more) is at the helm of the time-honored restaurant. From crowd-pleasing dishes such as traditional chicken mole, burritos, enchiladas, and tostadas, to tasty house-made margaritas and mojitos, Casa Vega features an extensive and time-tested menu.

2nd generation proprietress Christy Vega is our guest.

Eric SamaniegoChef Eric Samaniego (Bravo TV’s “Best New Restaurant“), formerly of Little Sparrow in Santa Ana, has joined Michael’s On Naples in Long Beach as the award-winning restaurant’s chef de cuisine.

In addition to changes in the kitchen, Michael’s on Naples is experiencing an aesthetic transformation as well. The restaurant’s rooftop terrace has been under construction as it undergoes a major expansion and renovation. The Rooftop will now have its own kitchen along with a separate menu featuring more casual fare and shareable plates.

Chef Samaniego, who began his career working for the late Charlie Trotter in Chicago, joined Michael’s On Naples in April working under the tutelage of former Corporate Executive Chef David Coleman. A graduate of Johnson & Wales University, Samaniego is a native of Southern California with his formative years spent in the Central Valley. His culinary credits include a seven-year stint with David Myers working at the high profile Sona and Comme Ca (both now closed) in Los Angeles.

Chef Eric Samaniego joins us.

Andrew Gruel and his son WilliamFood waste is inexcusable in restaurants these days. It’s a matter of principle in addition to being part of the green movement. Our own Chef Andrew Gruel will highlight what he does to turn usable food items that were formally tossed in the garbage into practical (and tasty) menu items.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris and Chef Andrew Gruel
Segment Two: Dan Minjares, Restaurant Manager and Mixologist, The Ranch Restaurant Part One
Segment Three: Dan Minjares, Restaurant Manager and Mixologist, The Ranch Restaurant Part Two
Segment Four: Burger Authority and filmmaker George Motz, The Great American Burger Book Part One
Segment Five: Burger Authority and filmmaker George Motz, The Great American Burger Book Part Two
Segment Six: Christy Vega, Proprietress Casa Vega, Sherman Oaks, CA
Segment Seven: Chef Eric Samaniego, Chef de Cuisine, Michael’s On Naples, Long Beach
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish Restaurant Group, Huntington Beach