Show 379, June 27, 2020: “Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy” with Producer & Director Elizabeth Carroll

Filmmaker Elizabeth CarrollDiana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy (documentary feature film) is an intimate, candid perspective into the curious world of cookbook author and British ex-pat Diana Kennedy – widely regarded as the world’s expert on Mexican cuisine. At five feet tall and 97 years old, Diana is larger than life: a foul-mouthed fireball far more feisty and energetic than her age and petite frame let on. Author of nine Mexican cookbooks, she has spent over 60 years researching and documenting the regional cuisines of Mexico.

“Kennedy has lived ‘off-the-grid’ on an eight-acre ranch outside Zitácuaro, Michoacán since the 1970’s: composting, growing her own crops, and using solar power to run her home. Aware of her own mortality, she is working tirelessly to solidify the legacy of her life’s efforts, with the hope of turning her home into a foundation for culinary education in Mexico.”

“A two-time James Beard Award winner, Diana was decorated with an Order of the Aztec Eagle from the Mexican government and became a Member of the Order of the British Empire from the UK in 2002. Despite her notable achievements, Diana is difficult to categorize. Often referred to as the “Julia Child of Mexico,” but Diana prefers a different title: “The Mick Jagger of Mexican Cuisine.”

“Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy explores Diana’s vibrant, unconventional life, blending vérité with archival footage, photographs and interviews. Viewers accompany her in intimate settings at home – cooking, gardening, and traveling to accept awards and speak to audiences. The film features interviews with notable chefs and friends including Alice Waters, José Andrés, Rick Bayless, and Gabriela Cámara, along with footage from Diana’s TLC cooking show, “The Art of Mexican Cooking.” Whether she is instructing chefs at her infamous “Boot Camp” cooking school, blazing her truck over the cobblestone roads of Zitácuaro or sunbathing with a scotch on her balcony, Diana is captivatingly bold, spirited, and unapologetically herself.”

“Diana Kennedy : Nothing Fancy” has just been released on various streaming platforms.

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Show 329, June 22, 2019: “Billion Dollar Bully” Update with Filmmaker Kaylie Milliken

Kaylie MillikenNow that the thought-provoking documentary, Billion Dollar Bully, is in release it’s time to revisit filmmaker Kaylie Milliken. In the film business owners (including chefs & restaurateurs) from across a broad spectrum share their personal stories of Yelp‘s questionable business dealings — all of which have been vehemently denied by Yelp.

“Today, consumers Yelp everything, from restaurants to surgeons. The same businesses that receive reviews — good or bad — simultaneously receive phone calls from Yelp salespeople to pay to advertise on Yelp. The small business community sees Yelp’s sales tactics as extortion, as their business’s reviews are filtered in ways that negatively impact their progress if advertisements aren’t purchased.”

“Does Yelp genuinely have an interest in helping people support the best local businesses, or is Yelp a pay-to-play platform? How can Yelp do an honest job of representing consumer sentiment while at the same time fueling their business with advertising dollars from the same companies being reviewed on their site? How does Yelp respond to claims of extortion? As a company that has claimed to care about free speech, what responsibility does Yelp have to provide recourse for business owners who need to address malicious libel from competitors and others who malign them for personal reasons? Should libelous reviews be allowed to remain, even when proven untrue?”

These questions are thoughtfully investigated and answered in the new documentary, Billion Dollar Bully.

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Show 314, March 9, 2019: “LA FOODWAYS Exploring Los Angeles’ Storied Agricultural Past” with Executive Producer Raphael Sbarge

Raphael SbargeKCET‘s (Public Television) regional historical documentary, LA FOODWAYS Exploring Los Angeles’ Storied Agricultural Past, is a new multi-platform series (and a KCET Original) presenting some surprising answers to challenges we now face as a city.

LA FOODWAYS examines the history of food in Los Angeles. This documentary from filmmaker Raphael Sbarge (A Concrete River; Reviving the Waters of Los Angeles) and KCET looks at the storied agricultural history of Los Angeles to understand present food waste challenges.

From the importance of orange crops in the 19th century to the massive scale of food waste in the U.S., the film is a deep dive into how local organizations are coming together to ensure the future of agriculture in the region.

““Foodways” was first coined in 1942 by anthropologists, folklorists and food scholars to describe the study of why we eat what we eat, and what it means: “Food at the intersection of culture, tradition and history.” Our attitudes, practices and rituals around food are a window onto our most basic beliefs about the world and ourselves.”

Executive Producer, Raphael Sbarge (Suh-barge), is our guest.

 

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Show 310, February 9, 2019: Documentary Filmmaker Kaylie Milliken, “Billion Dollar Bully”

Kaylie MillikenWe all know, and have probably used, the business review site, Yelp. Is it a trustworthy, objective business review site or an immensely lucrative platform for advertising? Where do Yelp! “Elites” fit into the picture? How reliable are their “honest” opinions?

Documentary filmmaker Kaylie Milliken was curious and spent the last four years researching and making “Billion Dollar Bully.” A wide cross section of small business people share their experiences with Yelp and their less than subtle advertising sales tactics. Particularly fascinating is the story of Chef Davide Cerretini of Botto in Northern California. He turned the tables on Yelp in the Italian way. The documentary is about to be released and you can be the judge.

Filmmaker Kaylie Milliken joins us without any filtering.

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Show 310, February 9, 2019: Documentary Filmmaker Kaylie Milliken, “Billion Dollar Bully” Continues…

Kaylie MillikenWe all know, and have probably used, the business review site, Yelp. Is it a trustworthy, objective business review site or an immensely lucrative platform for advertising? Where do Yelp! “Elites” fit into the picture? How reliable are their “honest” opinions?

“Billion Dollar Bully is an investigative documentary about Yelp that examines the claims by business owners of extortion, review manipulation and review fabrication. In this documentary you will meet business owners from across a broad spectrum, whose commonality is their allegations of Yelp’s questionable business dealings.”

“For years, Yelp has been accused of unethical business practices, all of which Yelp vehemently denies and chalks up as conspiracy theories.”

“Business owners and consumers deserve to see arguments for and against Yelp’s business tactics. After so much debate in the media, this challenging documentary is long overdue.”

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Show 162, March 5, 2016: C-CAP L.A. Program Director Lisa Fontanesi and Celebrity Chef Sherry Yard

City of GoldPulitzer Prize-winning food critic Jonathan Gold will join local non-profit C-CAP LA (Careers through Culinary Arts Program) at their upcoming fundraiser at the Westside Pavilion on Monday, March 14, 2016, featuring a VIP screening of City of Gold, a documentary that details Gold’s journey through Los Angeles’ cultural culinary scene. Following the screening will be a Q & A with filmmaker Laura Gabbert and Jonathan Gold moderated by KCRW’s “Good Food” host, Chef Evan Kleiman.

Taking place at The Wine Bar at the Landmark Theaters Westside Pavilion, the City of Gold event begins with a reception featuring premium wines from the Wine Exchange and craft beer from El Segundo Brewery and Smog City Brewing Co. as well as some of Gold’s favorite foods including sliders from West Coast Prime Meats, pork tostadas from Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken’s Border Grill, crudités and fruit from Melissa’s Produce, desserts from Spago and an oyster bar, courtesy of Michael Cimarusti’s new Cape Seafood and Provisions.

The reception will be followed by a special screening of City of Gold, accompanied by gourmet popcorn prepared by Sherry Yard. After screening the film, KCRW Good Food’s Evan Kleiman will moderate a Q&A session with Gold and Gabbert.

Sherry YardThe City of Gold fundraiser will take place on Monday, March 14 at the Landmark Theaters Westside Pavilion located at 10850 West Pico Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90064. The reception begins at 6:00 PM and the 91 minute documentary will begin at 7:30 PM, followed by the Q&A session. Tickets are $101 and can be purchased at ccapinc.org. Proceeds support C-CAP’s program in the Los Angeles Region.

C-CAP L.A. Program Director, Lisa Fontanesi and James Beard Award-winning Chef Sherry Yard (also a C-CAP National Board Member) join us with the 411 on the edible evening.

Go here to see more about the City of Gold screening.

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Show 69, April 12, 2014: Food blogger Eddie Lin of Deep End Dining

Eddie Lin of Deep End DiningEddie Lin is a larger than life food blogger. Fortunately he also knows what he’s writing about.

Ten years ago he created the always provocative Deep End Dining blog to provide a forum for his views. It’s a hit…

He is also Los Angeles Magazine’s Digest blogger.

Eddie is the author of Lonely Planet’s Extreme Cuisine. You’ve seen him on Travel Channel’s Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern, Cooking Channel’s Eat Street, and as a guest judge on Bravo’s Top Chef Masters.

His working philosophy is one man’s “Yuck” is perhaps another’s “Yum.”

He’s putting together a sure-to-be-talked-about new documentary about the placenta as a possible vitamin-rich, food source. In some cultures it’s believed to have mystical restorative properties… Even “Bizarre Foods America’s” (Travel Channel) Andrew Zimmern is impressed.

Deep End Dining…”Daring. Different. Delicious. There’s high end dining. There’s low end dining. And then there’s everything else in between. We’d like to introduce you to another level – Deep End Dining. We are diners dedicated to seeking and devouring the food uncommon, cuisine exotic and entrees less ordered. Have an open appetite and get ready to plunge into…the Deep End.”

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April 12: Deep End Dining, K-Town Night Market, Provenance OC, Argot Wines, Bruce Kalman, The Shed, It’s It, Cool-A-Coo

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Food blogger Eddie Lin of Deep End Dining
Segment Three: Danny Park, Operations Partner, KTown Night Market, and Yong Kim, Co-Founder & Co-Owner, Seoul Sausage Company
Segment Four: Owner/Chef Cathy Pavlos, Provenance in Newport Beach
Segment Five: Justin Harmon, Winemaker, Argot Wine Company, Santa Rosa, CA
Segment Six: Executive Chef Bruce Kalman, Union Restaurant, Pasadena, CA
Segment Seven: HeadShedHead Brad Orrison, The Shed Barbeque & Blues Joint and The Shed Saucery, Ocean Springs, MS
Segment Eight: Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris on the iconic premium ice cream novelty now back at Dodger Stadium, the Cool-A-Coo

Chef Jet and Producer Andy preview the show.

Thoughtfully written food blogs proving genuinely useful information are seemingly ubiquitous now but they weren’t ten years ago. Happy 10th Anniversary to “Deep End Dining.”

There is a new addition to the booming Asian Night Market scene locally. A warm welcome to the first K-Town Night Market.

The most ambitious restaurant opening in the OC thus far this year is the long-awaited Provenance in Newport Beach. An impressive organic garden wraps around the perimeter of the restaurant’s spacious patio.

We’ll have a visit from a passionate young wine maker in Sonoma County who is creating limited production wines crafted his way with impressive results.

A local chef with substantial cooking credentials has opened a new, more personal restaurant in Pasadena. Chef Jet will provide the specifics.

The most famous barbeque joint in Mississippi has figured out a way to go national. Their popular sauces and marinades are now available in glass bottles at better food stores across the country.

It’s ice cream season. One of the most popular premium ice cream novelty items ever is the iconic It’s It. It’s SoCal cousin is the Cool-A-Coo. We have the scoop on both…

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

Eddie Lin of Deep End DiningEddie Lin is a larger than life food blogger. Fortunately he also knows what he’s writing about.

Ten years ago he created the always provocative Deep End Dining blog to provide a forum for his views. It’s a hit…

He is also Los Angeles Magazine’s Digest blogger.

Eddie is the author of Lonely Planet’s Extreme Cuisine. You’ve seen him on Travel Channel’s Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern, Cooking Channel’s Eat Street, and as a guest judge on Bravo’s Top Chef Masters.

He’s working on a provocative new documentary about the placenta as a possible vitamin-rich, food source.

Deep End Dining…”Daring. Different. Delicious. There’s high end dining. There’s low end dining. And then there’s everything else in between. We’d like to introduce you to another level – Deep End Dining. We are diners dedicated to seeking and devouring the food uncommon, cuisine exotic and entrees less ordered. Have an open appetite and get ready to plunge into…the Deep End.”

Koreatown Night MarketNight Markets are hot right now in SoCal. It was only a matter of time before a Korean Night Market was organized.

KTown Night Market (a free event) is set for Friday, April 18th (4:00 p.m. to 12:00 a.m.) and Saturday, April 19th (2:00 p.m. to 12:00 a.m.) at the Robert F. Kennedy Community Schools in KoreaTown.

It’s a veritable buffet of great ethnic food including the best food trucks around curated by Seoul Sausage Co. (winners of Season 3 of Food Network’s “Great Food Truck Race.”

For the 1st time ever the winners of “Great Food Truck Race” from Seasons 1 to 3 (Grill ‘Em All, The Lime Truck & Seoul Sausage Co.) will all be together selling the food that made them famous nationwide.

“Our vision is for people to come and experience Korean food, Korean culture and Korean Entertainment.” Everyone is welcome!

Yong Kim of Seoul Sausage Co. and Danny Park, Operations Partner for KTown Night Market are our guests.

Cathy PavlosChef Cathy Pavlos’ Provenance – The Garden at Eastbluff in Newport Beach (Eastbluff Center) is the most anticipated restaurant opening in the OC this far this year. It’s been an anxious two years in the making…

Chef Cathy’s grandfather was a commercial farmer in Huntington Beach. She grew up eating and cooking only her grandfather’s farm raised produce, fresh fish from the docks in San Pedro, fresh fruits from family orchards in Whittier, and often proteins butchered on the farm. She spent 10-years in the local 4-H club raising horses, goats, lambs and rabbits. Her lamb and rabbits were sold commercially.

Provenance’s Mission Statement – Provenance is a neighborhood restaurant – the kind of restaurant you wish you had in your neighborhood. Our menu, with most items made in house from natural and/or organic products, is of consistently high quality and tailored to a simple as well as sophisticated taste and a moderately high budget. Our concept, anchored by our organic garden, will focus on California Cuisine and outstanding service. We will continue to grow and evolve with our customers and promote a friendly, fair, and creative work environment, while profitably providing unwavering attentive and knowledgeable service.

Provenance is already serving seven days a week. No lunch on Saturday and Sunday Farm Breakfast.

Justin Harmon of Argot WinesHow does a software engineer (and ex-chemical engineer) from Chicago find his way to Sonoma County and make the transition to becoming a serious winemaker who is respected by his peers? You’ll meet the passionate Justin Harmon and find out! His first home brew was a Cabernet made from a juice concentrate kit while still in Chicago.

He’s coming to Los Angeles on April 16th to showcase his wines @ a pop-up dinner prepared by Chef David Feau (ex-The Royce at The Langham Hotel in Pasadena) in Downtown Los Angeles organized by Learn About Wine.

Bruce Kalman on Union PasadenaBruce Kalman, who was previously the chef at the Churchill and Urbano Pizza Bar, has opened the 50-seat Union in Old Town Pasadena. It’s Kalman’s version of Northern Italian cuisine.

He’s known for making his pastas from scratch.

He’s an alum from the exclusive winner’s circle of Food Network’s “Chopped.”

His much praised polenta is from Pasadena’s Grist & Toll.

On April 13th Union debuts Sunday Family Suppers (Cena di Famiglia.) It’s three courses, including an ample platter of Italian desserts, for $39.

Brand Orrinson of the Shed BBQIf you’re from the South and love barbeque then you know the familiar catchphrase, “Get Fed at the Shed.”

It refers to The Shed Barbeque & Blues Joint in Ocean Springs, Mississippi.

The Shed was founded in 2002 by (brothers and sister) Brad and Brooke Orrison and their parents. The original shed was 330 square feet and was built by Brad. He was all of 24 and his sister was 19. With success it expanded to 15,000 square feet over the years. The ‘cue has garnered many serious BBQ competition awards. The Shed burned down in 2011 and was quickly rebuilt retaining the quirky charm of the original.

They have been all over Food TV. Guy Fieri “discovered” them for Food Network’s “Diners Drive-Ins & Dives” and they have also been on Travel Channel’s “Man v. Food.” Most recently they even had their own reality series on Food Network.

Their proprietary BBQ Sauces and Marinades have become so popular that they have packaged them in glass bottles for national distribution. They are preservative free, have no MSG, and no added colorings or artificial flavors. This line of their business will eventually be bigger than the BBQ restaurants.

Brad and his crew (including New Orleans Chef Rene Patout) were just here exhibiting (with great flair) at the Natural Products Expo West in Anaheim. You could taste any of their fine sauces on their fabulous tri-tip!

Cool a Coo Ice Cream SandwichesWe’re talking the best in premium ice cream novelties…

In a recent “What’s Cooking with Travis and Chef Jet Tila” segment (heard on Friday morning @ 7:50 a.m. on AM 830 KLAA) the guys were discussing their favorites in ballpark eats. Travis brought up the decadent subject of It’s It and Cool-As-Coo’s. Travis became a fan of the It’s It during his college years. For Jet, Cool-A-Coos bring back memories of Dodger Stadium. We’ll explore these rich vanilla ice cream sandwich treats dipped in chocolate and topped on both sides with an oatmeal cookie. Both are made right here in California.

Both have great background stories. Unfortunately only one of them is available to enjoy outside of a Ball Park!

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Food blogger Eddie Lin of Deep End Dining
Segment Three: Danny Park, Operations Partner, KTown Night Market, and Yong Kim, Co-Founder & Co-Owner, Seoul Sausage Company
Segment Four: Owner/Chef Cathy Pavlos, Provenance in Newport Beach
Segment Five: Justin Harmon, Winemaker, Argot Wine Company, Santa Rosa, CA
Segment Six: Executive Chef Bruce Kalman, Union Restaurant, Pasadena, CA
Segment Seven: HeadShedHead Brad Orrison, The Shed Barbeque & Blues Joint and The Shed Saucery, Ocean Springs, MS
Segment Eight: Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris on the iconic premium ice cream novelty now back at Dodger Stadium, the Cool-A-Coo

Show 50, November 30, 2013: Griffin Hammond, of “Sriracha – a documentary by Griffin Hammond”

Griffin HammondGriffin Hammond, a past guest on the show, is a respected filmmaker. He’s just completed his fascinating film on Sriracha. This documentary has taken him to Southern California on multiple occasions and even to Thailand where Sriracha originated. In Thailand the people are amazed that Sriracha is a popular condiment in the United States. In Thailand it’s used on fish and eggs and doesn’t have a cult following.

Griffin financed this unusual documentary via an incredibly successful Kickstarter campaign that was actually way oversubscribed.

On Wednesday, December 11th “Sriracha” will be released to the public online. If you love Sriracha or just wonder what all the fuss is about this is a must-see for you!

Just how popular is the domestic version of Sriracha? In 2012 they sold 20 million bottles with the green cap and the red rooster on the label! That’s an incredible 100 million pounds of peppers used in the sauce.

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Show 40, September 14, 2013: Elizabeth Huettinger, Wine Director, Addison Del Mar

Elizabeth Huettinger of the Addison in Del MarSommelier Elizabeth Huettinger is the new Wine Director at Addison restaurant and The Grand Del Mar Resort in Del Mar. She was previously part of the celebrated wine team at Spago Beverly Hills.

Elizabeth just took the incredibly difficult “Advanced” certification test from the Court of Master Sommeliers. It’s in three parts, including service, theory, and blind tasting. She shared that humbling experience with us.

Earlier in the Summer the Grand hosted a special screening of the documentary, “SOMM”. It’s the first effort by filmmaker Jason Wise.
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“SOMM” tells the fascinating story of four sommeliers attempting to pass the rigorous and prestigious Master Sommelier exam. This test has one of the lowest pass rates imaginable. Elizabeth’s head sommelier at Spago (her previous post) is a Master Sommelier. She talked about hosting the screening (there was wine and abundant food stations) and her reaction to the highly acclaimed documentary.

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