Show 479, June 18, 2022: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

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 honoring excellence in Books, Broadcast Media and Journalism. She also shares some of her best Chicago dining adventures. Additionally we’ll highlight some of her recent columns.

Chef Rudi Sodamin is the newly installed Head of Culinary Arts for Princess Cruises. Sodamin also serves as the Master Chef for sister cruise line, Holland America Line. Throughout his career, Sodamin has been the driving force behind revolutionizing culinary practices and elevating the perception of fine dining in the cruise industry. An internationally-respected food authority, Sodamin is possibly the most highly-decorated chef working on the world’s oceans and is widely considered one of the most innovative, energetic, and influential chefs in the hospitality industry. Among his most recent accomplishments has been the highly successful launch of Rudi’s Sel de Mer restaurant onboard three Holland America Line’s ships.” Chef Rudi Sodamin is our guest with a fresh Alaskan salmon at the ready.

Weiser Family Farms began in 1977 when Sid Weiser, a chemistry teacher and counselor at Garfield High School in East Los Angeles decided to pack up the family and follow his dream of working off the land. Sidney and his wife Raquel laid down roots in Tehachapi, California. There, they learned to tend to the fruit trees… apples, peaches, and pears. In the ensuing years, they acquired farmland in other locations where they branched out into a variety of fruits, vegetables, and flowers. In 1982 their son Alex jumped in to assist the family in selling at local Farmers’ Markets. There he encountered chefs, the public and specialty produce buyers who wanted seasonal, high quality and superior tasting produce. Listening to this input, Alex began to focus on creating a bio-diverse farm dedicated to applying sustainable farming techniques. His overriding desire was to supply people with unique fruits and vegetables at their peak, rather than picked for commercial usage.” 2nd generation family farmer, Alex Weiser joins us.

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. There is a new law in California that mandates all bar and restaurant employees serving alcohol to obtain a new certification. It involves a training of three to four hours and then passing an open book test. The concept is worthwhile but we’ll get Chef Andrew’s thoughts on this and the reality of actually meeting the August 31st deadline.

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

Play

Show 479, June 18, 2022: Alex Weiser, Weiser Family Farms, Tehachapi, CA Part One

Alex Weiser of Weiser Family Farms

Weiser Family Farms began in 1977 when Sid Weiser, a chemistry teacher and counselor at Garfield High School in East Los Angeles decided to pack up the family and follow his dream of working off the land. Sidney and his wife Raquel laid down roots in Tehachapi, California. There, they learned to tend to the fruit trees… apples, peaches, and pears. In the ensuing years, they acquired farmland in other locations where they branched out into a variety of fruits, vegetables, and flowers.”

“In 1982 their son Alex jumped in to assist the family in selling at local Farmers’ Markets. There he encountered chefs, the public and specialty produce buyers who wanted seasonal, high quality and superior tasting produce. Listening to this input, Alex began to focus on creating a bio-diverse farm dedicated to applying sustainable farming techniques. His overriding desire was to supply people with unique fruits and vegetables at their peak, rather than picked for commercial usage. Today, Weiser Family Farms grows in the Greater Bakersfield area, Tehachapi and the Lucerne Valley, cultivating a tapestry of high- quality produce year round.”

“Older brother Dan joined the family business in 2001, after a long stint with The Walt Disney Co. Dan, a graduate of USC’s Marshall School of Business, brought with him a real-world business sensibility to the farm that has helped bring the overall operation to the next level. Not long after Dan came aboard, older sister Esther left her established teaching career to help keep her knuckle-headed brothers in line. Her common sense approach and no nonsense communication style help to keep everything in focus and moving forward.”

Weiser Family Farms is, and has always been, a family farming entity in the true sense of the word. When you buy from Weiser, you are truly buying from The Weiser Family.

Weiser Family Farms’ seasonal produce is available at their stands at area Farmers Markets including Santa Monica on Wednesday and Saturday, and on Sundays in Beverly Hills and Mar Vista.

Alex Weiser is our guest with Purple Majesty Potatoes in hand.

Play

June 18: Anne Marie Panoringan, Rudi Sodamin, Alex Weiser

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Journalist Anne Marie Panoringan, The Voice of OC’s Food Columnist Part One
Segment Three: Journalist Anne Marie Panoringan, The Voice of OC’s Food Columnist Part Two
Segment Four: Master Chef Rudi Sodamin, Head of Culinary Arts, Princess Cruises Part One
Segment Five: Master Chef Rudi Sodamin, Head of Culinary Arts, Princess Cruises Part Two
Segment Six: Alex Weiser, Weiser Family Farms, Tehachapi, CA Part One
Segment Seven: Alex Weiser, Weiser Family Farms, Tehachapi, CA Part Two
Segment Eight: “Ask the Chef” with Co-host Chef Andrew Gruel

We’re previewing the show with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris.

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 honoring excellence in Books, Broadcast Media and Journalism. She also shares some of her Chicago dining adventures. Additionally we’ll highlight some of her recent columns.

“Chef Rudi Sodamin is the newly installed Head of Culinary Arts for Princess Cruises. Sodamin also serves as the Master Chef for sister cruise line, Holland America Line. Throughout his career, Sodamin has been the driving force behind revolutionizing culinary practices and elevating the perception of fine dining in the cruise industry. An internationally-respected food authority, Sodamin is possibly the most highly-decorated chef working on the world’s oceans and is widely considered one of the most innovative, energetic, and influential chefs in the hospitality industry. Among his most recent accomplishments has been the highly successful launch of Rudi’s Sel de Mer restaurant onboard three Holland America Line’s ships.” Chef Rudi Sodamin is our guest with a fresh Alaskan salmon at the ready.

“Weiser Family Farms began in 1977 when Sid Weiser, a chemistry teacher and counselor at Garfield High School in East Los Angeles decided to pack up the family and follow his dream of working off the land. Sidney and his wife Raquel laid down roots in Tehachapi, California. There, they learned to tend to the fruit trees… apples, peaches, and pears. In the ensuing years, they acquired farmland in other locations where they branched out into a variety of fruits, vegetables, and flowers. In 1982 their son Alex jumped in to assist the family in selling at local Farmers’ Markets. There he encountered chefs, the public and specialty produce buyers who wanted seasonal, high quality and superior tasting produce. Listening to this input, Alex began to focus on creating a bio-diverse farm dedicated to applying sustainable farming techniques. His overriding desire was to supply people with unique fruits and vegetables at their peak, rather than picked for commercial usage. 2nd generation family farmer, Alex Weiser joins us.

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. There is a new law in California that mandates all bar and restaurant employees serving alcohol to obtain a new certification. It involves a training of three to four hours and then passing an open book test. We’ll get Chef Andrew’s thoughts on this and the reality of actually meeting the August 31st deadline.

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

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 honoring excellence in Books, Broadcast Media and Journalism. She also shares some of her Chicago dining adventures.

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.

Rudi Sodamin

Chef Rudi Sodamin is the newly installed Head of Culinary Arts for Princess Cruises. Sodamin also serves as the Master Chef for sister line, Holland America Line.”

“Throughout his career, Sodamin has been the driving force behind revolutionizing culinary practices and elevating the perception of fine dining in the cruise industry. An internationally-respected food authority, Sodamin is likely the most highly-decorated chef working on the world’s oceans and is widely considered one of the most innovative, energetic, and influential chefs in the hospitality industry. Among his most recent accomplishments has been the highly successful launch of Rudi’s Sel de Mer restaurant onboard three Holland America Line’s ships.”

Alaska cruise season is on now through September. As part of Princess Cruises’ award-winning “North to Alaska program” Rudi oversees their “Wild for Alaska Seafood” effort. This industry-first, location-based seafood initiative features an extensive menu rotation of fresh Alaska seafood dishes, along with destination-inspired cocktails including flights of Alaska spirits sourced from local distilleries. Also on offer are hand-picked, sommelier selection premium wine pairings to go with Alaska seafood dishes.

“I see food as the way to our guests’ hearts, and the individuals on the Princess Cruise culinary team bring great heart to what they do and take tremendous pride in their work,” said Sodamin “My goal is to grow that pride and lead the culinary workforce to new performance heights through innovative approaches to teamwork and creativity, collaboratively creating new signature interactive dining experiences, and motivating this talented team to new levels of culinary artistry.”

Chef Rudi Sodamin is our guest with a fresh Alaskan salmon at the ready.

Alex Weiser of Weiser Family Farms

Weiser Family Farms began in 1977 when Sid Weiser, a chemistry teacher and counselor at Garfield High School in East Los Angeles decided to pack up the family and follow his dream of working off the land. Sidney and his wife Raquel laid down roots in Tehachapi, California. There, they learned to tend to the fruit trees… apples, peaches, and pears. In the ensuing years, they acquired farmland in other locations where they branched out into a variety of fruits, vegetables, and flowers.”

“In 1982 their son Alex jumped in to assist the family in selling at local Farmers’ Markets. There he encountered chefs, the public and specialty produce buyers who wanted seasonal, high quality and superior tasting produce. Listening to this input, Alex began to focus on creating a bio-diverse farm dedicated to applying sustainable farming techniques. His overriding desire was to supply people with unique fruits and vegetables at their peak, rather than picked for commercial usage. Today, Weiser Family Farms grows in the Greater Bakersfield area, Tehachapi and the Lucerne Valley, cultivating a tapestry of high- quality produce year round.”

“Older brother Dan joined the family business in 2001, after a long stint with The Walt Disney Co. Dan, a graduate of USC’s Marshall School of Business, brought with him a real-world business sensibility to the farm that has helped bring the overall operation to the next level. Not long after Dan came aboard, older sister Esther left her established teaching career to help keep her knuckle-headed brothers in line. Her common sense approach and no nonsense communication style help to keep everything in focus and moving forward.”

Weiser Family Farms is, and has always been, a family farming entity in the true sense of the word. When you buy from Weiser, you are truly buying from The Weiser Family.

Weiser Family Farms’ seasonal produce is available at their stands at area Farmers Markets including Santa Monica on Wednesday and Saturday, and on Sundays in Beverly Hills and Mar Vista.

Alex Weiser is our guest with Purple Majesty Potatoes in hand.

Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group

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.

There is a new law in California that mandates all bar and restaurant employees serving alcohol to obtain a new, special certification. It involves a training of three to four hours and then passing an open book test. At present there are very few entities certified to administer the course. We’ll get Chef Andrew’s thoughts on this and the reality of actually meeting the August 31st deadline.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Journalist Anne Marie Panoringan, The Voice of OC’s Food Columnist Part One
Segment Three: Journalist Anne Marie Panoringan, The Voice of OC’s Food Columnist Part Two
Segment Four: Master Chef Rudi Sodamin, Head of Culinary Arts, Princess Cruises Part One
Segment Five: Master Chef Rudi Sodamin, Head of Culinary Arts, Princess Cruises Part Two
Segment Six: Alex Weiser, Weiser Family Farms, Tehachapi, CA Part One
Segment Seven: Alex Weiser, Weiser Family Farms, Tehachapi, CA Part Two
Segment Eight: “Ask the Chef” with Co-host Chef Andrew Gruel

Show 161, February 27, 2016: Jon Yee, enFuso, and Nicole Stimson, Beautiful Olive

Enfuso Olive OilenFuso and Beautiful Olive are locally owned and operated Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar production and distribution businesses. enFuso does the R & D and manufacturing of the line of high quality artisan products.

Beautiful Olive sells the product line at10 weekly farmers markets in Southern California and are proud to represent the wonderful handmade products. enFuso is showcasing their gourmet specialty foods at the Pechanga Wine Festival.

enFuso is a 100% family-owned business based in Los Alamitos, California that produces high-quality, hand crafted artisanal California olive oil and Italian balsamic vinegar products. Their team guarantees every product is handled with the utmost craft and care.

enFuso is one of the few specialty food companies that handles their products in the following ways:

  • They hand craft their own recipes.
  • enFuso uses the highest quality base for all of their products.

enFuso uses real ingredients that come from nature – NOT artificially created in a lab.

Co-owner Jon Yee (enFuso) and Beautiful Olive’s Nicole Stimson join us.

Play

Show 99, November 29, 2014: Chef & Baker Hans Rockenwagner

Hans RockenwagnerIn Hans Rockenwagner’s (Rockenwagner Bakery) L.A. kitchen, German cooking takes on a whole new meaning. He starts with comforting, homey flavors of his childhood in Germany, looks to the bounty of the California farmers’ markets for ingredients and inspiration, and adds his creativity and droll wit. The resulting dishes have captivated Angelenos for many years.

Now his most beloved and accessible recipes are gathered in Das Cook Book – German Cooking…California Style, thoroughly adapted and tested for the home kitchen.

Rockenwagner was born and raised in Germany, trained as a chef in Germany and Switzerland, and at the mere age of twenty-two moved to the U.S. to run the kitchen at Chicago’s famed Le Perroquet. Three years later, he opened Rockenwagner in Venice, quickly winning national acclaim for his fresh, inventive California take on the German classics of his youth.

Today he is the proprietor of multiple L.A. area restaurants including Café Rockenwagner in Brentwood and 3 Square Café in Venice, as well as a large artisan commercial bakery serving the discriminating area restaurant and luxury hotel community.

Play

Show 71, May 3, 2014: Executive Chef Jesse Barber of Barnyard Venice

Jesse Barber of Barnyard VeniceBarnyard Venice (opened in 2012) is a bit of a find housed in an old cottage on Pacific Avenue. It’s rustic and comfortable.

Chef Jesse Barber, an alum of the kitchen at Tasting Kitchen, is the menu-maker. Earlier in his career he worked with Thomas Keller at both The French Laundry and Bouchon. He’s put together an ever changing menu with an emphasis on local ingredients. He’s a regular at the Santa Monica Farmers Markets and that’s the basis for his menu which changes almost daily.

His grilled octopus is a standout. Four-hour prep time! It’s steamed and marinated.

Ramen Tuesday is at the bar and on the patio.

Chef Jesse does significant outreach to the community so his guests better understand where the ingredients at Barnyard come from. On Wednesdays at 1:00 p.m. he’ll usually do a butchering demo of a whole animal. The last Sunday of each month it is a cooking demo. It might be baking a fruit pie or even perhaps preparing extraordinary chicken wings.

Play

Show 64, March 8, 2014: Michael Passmore, Fish Farmer, Passmore Ranch

Michael Passmore of Passmore RanchThe always colorful Michael Passmore is a fish farmer in Northern California.

Passmore Ranch is a premium freshwater, sustainable fish ranch in California. They started modestly by selling live fish at Northern California farmers’ markets, and their quality and service quickly made them a premier purveyor for top restaurants and Michelin-starred chefs throughout the State and country.

They offer the freshest fish, aged, sized and delivered to order, almost as if chefs were pointing and saying, “I’ll take that one.” They continue to build new partnerships with some of the country’s best chefs, including renowned restaurateur Rick Moonen, three-star Michelin chef Christopher Kostow, Napa pioneer Cindy Pawlcyn, and Dallas chef and “Top Chef” Season 10 contestant John Tesar.

Passmore Ranch offers premium freshwater white sturgeon, black bass, striped bass, catfish, silver carp and trout, plus prized caviar. Most are available in any form a chef would like – live, filleted, special cuts and everything in between – coming straight, as the Passmore crew says, “fresh from our ranch to your kitchen.”

Play

March 8: Brock Radke, Maui Brewing, Big Island Chocolate Festival, 800 Degress Pizzeria, Passmore Ranch, Robert Schueller

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Brock Radke, Food Editor, Las Vegas Weekly
Segment Three: Garrett Marrero, founder, Maui Brewing Co.
Segment Four: Farsheed Bonakdar, President, Kona Cacao Association
Segment Five: Executive Chef Anthony Carron, co-founder, 800 Degrees Neapolitan Pizzeria
Segment Six: Michael Passmore, Fish Farmer, Passmore Ranch Part One
Segment Seven: Michael Passmore, Fish Farmer, Passmore Ranch Part Two
Segment Eight: Robert Schueller, Produce Authority, Melissa’s / World Variety Produce, Inc.

Chef Jet and Producer Andy preview the show.

Let’s talk pure chocolate indulgence. We’ll be previewing the Big Island Chocolate Festival. Then it’s time for a Las Vegas dining update. Brock Radke, our Las Vegas insider, brings us up-to-date. There is a new Neapolitan pizzeria in town that’s generating long lines. The co-founder & executive chef provides the tasty details.

You’ve probably never tasted farm-raised fish like this unless you’ve dined at a Rick Moonen restaurant or at The Meadowood Restaurant. A purveyor to the best restaurants is now serving home chefs with fresh fish on a very limited basis. There is an incredible craft brewery success story in Maui and you’ll hear all about it. They actually package their premium beer in cans! Organic fruits and vegetables are top of the mind. Our resident produce expert, Robert Schueller (The Pastor of Produce) from Melissa’s, is back with an informative update.

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

Brock Radke of Las Vegas WeeklyBrock Radke is our “in the know” guy in Las Vegas. He’s the respected Food editor for Las Vegas Weekly.

Brock brings us up-to-date on the Vegas dining scene. We’ll find out about the soon to open Linq on The Strip, the 411 on Giada De Laurentiis’ first restaurant in Las Vegas, and a collection of enticing new restaurants in Las Vegas’ Chinatown.

Garett Marrero of Maui Brewing CompanyMaui Brewing Co., founded by Garrett Marrero, is a craft brewery based in Maui, HI. As the largest authentic Hawaiian brewery, it currently has one brewery in Lahaina, and one brewpub in Kahana that creates more than 40 different styles on a rotating basis. In 2005 Maui Brewing Co. produced 400 barrels from the single brewpub and expanded into an additional brewery location in 2007, producing a little over 20,000 barrels in 2013.

MBC has remained consistent in the vision, “Handcrafted Ales & Lagers Brewed with Aloha.” The beers have been recognized worldwide for quality and innovation winning more than 100 medals in a short history. MBC was one of the first craft brewers to package their products in recyclable aluminum cans.

MBC is currently in construction to move production to a state-of-the-art brewery in Kihei.

It’s the only Hawaiian brewery with product available in the continental United States where the beer is actually brewed, and packaged, in Hawaii.

BIg Island Chocolate FestivalThe alluring, rich taste of chocolate, in both its sweet and savory forms, is showcased at the 3rd Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival, May 2 to 3 at the Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii. Headlining the event is “Mr. Chocolate,” Jacques Torres, Food Network celebrity and acclaimed pastry chef from New York. Also appearing is Donald Wressell of Guittard and Derek Poirier of Valrhona USA.

“The Big Island Chocolate Festival is a fantasyland of chocolate.” Says Kona Cacao Association President Farsheed Bonakdar (Bone-ak-dar.) “It inspires our chefs, encourages our island farmers to grow cacao and shows our chocolatiers that chocolate can be a viable business.” Farsheed Bonakdar of KCA is our guest.

Anthony Carron of 800 Degrees PizzaChef Anthony Carron is the creative force behind 800 Degrees Neapolitan Pizzeria which is growing rapidly with a devoted following. His background is in fine-dining. It started in Westwood in 2011. A “To-Go” branch was added in Westwood. Santa Monica recently opened. Las Vegas, Pasadena, Hollywood, and New York are on the horizon.

It’s thin crust pizza that follows the traditions established in Naples. What’s really different is that once you choose your toppings the pizza is then flash-cooked for about a minute in a wood-burning over at 800 degrees!

“800 Degrees strives to honor the tradition of classic Neapolitan pizza where the integrity of handcrafted ingredients is paramount. We use natural grown California tomatoes, our mozzarella is made for us every day right here in L.A., and our crust is crafted in house from only Italian flour, wild yeast, sea salt and filtered water.”

Michael Passmore of Passmore RanchThe always colorful Michael Passmore is a fish farmer in Northern California.

Passmore Ranch is a premium freshwater, sustainable fish ranch in California. They started modestly by selling live fish at Northern California farmers’ markets, and their quality and service quickly made them a premier purveyor for top restaurants and Michelin-starred chefs throughout the State and country.

They offer the freshest fish, aged, sized and delivered to order, almost as if chefs were pointing and saying, “I’ll take that one.” They continue to build new partnerships with some of the country’s best chefs, including renowned restaurateur Rick Moonen, three-star Michelin chef Christopher Kostow, Napa pioneer Cindy Pawlcyn, and Dallas chef and “Top Chef” Season 10 contestant John Tesar.

Passmore Ranch offers premium freshwater white sturgeon, black bass, striped bass, catfish, silver carp and trout, plus prized caviar. Most are available in any form a chef would like – live, filleted, special cuts and everything in between – coming straight, as the Passmore crew says, “fresh from our ranch to your kitchen.”

Michael Passmore speaks about the launch of Provisions. “Home Chefs, we’re very excited to bring you our fish and produce, fresh from our ranch to your kitchen just like we do with Michelin starred, James Beard awarded, and just plain great chefs in restaurants around the country.”

Rick Moonen of rm seafood in Las VegasMichael is joined by Chef Rick Moonen of rm Seafood and Rx Boiler Room in Las Vegas. Sustainable seafood is his specialty. Chef Moonen was at Passmore Ranch curing a batch of American caviar. He explains the process.

Organic fruits and vegetables are getting a lot of attention these days. With the fresh concern about GMOs in food, certified organic fruits and vegetables are, by definition, free of GMOs.

Robert Schueller of Melissa's World Variety ProduceOur resident produce expert, Robert Schueller of Melissa’s World Variety Produce, is back with us to discuss what’s new in organics. Melissa’s is the largest variety supplier of fresh organic produce in the USA. They have been distributing organic produce for over 16 years.

What’s hot? All varieties of organic Kale are at the top of the sales charts currently.

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Brock Radke, Food Editor, Las Vegas Weekly
Segment Three: Garrett Marrero, founder, Maui Brewing Co.
Segment Four: Farsheed Bonakdar, President, Kona Cacao Association
Segment Five: Executive Chef Anthony Carron, co-founder, 800 Degrees Neapolitan Pizzeria
Segment Six: Michael Passmore, Fish Farmer, Passmore Ranch Part One
Segment Seven: Michael Passmore, Fish Farmer, Passmore Ranch Part Two
Segment Eight: Robert Schueller, Produce Authority, Melissa’s / World Variety Produce, Inc.

Show 59, February 1, 2013: Chef Hans Rockenwagner, Rockenwagner Bakery and Café Rockenwagner

Hans RockenwagnerChef Hans Rockenwagner burst on the local Venice dining scene in 1985 when he opened the original (40 seat) Rockenwagner on Abbot Kinney Blvd. where Joe’s is now.

In 1991 Rockenwagner moved to a much larger space in the Frank Gehry-designed Edgemar Complex in Santa Monica. A master bread baker from Germany was added to the culinary staff.

White asparagus, in season, became a signature menu item. He direct imported it himself from Germany bringing in 300 lbs. per week via air freight during the season.

Hans eventually discovered there was more money (and stability) in artisan bread and eventually closed Rockenwagner to concentrate on his growing wholesale bread baking business. He now has 60 bakers working around the clock seven days a week! Rockenwagner Bakery is a fixture at area Farmers Markets including the Sunday Beverly Hills Farmers Market.

Play

February 1: Curtis Stone, Cookies for a Koz, Hans Rockenwagner, Puck’s Tavern, Pacific Coast Wine Festival

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Curtis Stone, Owner/Chef of Maude, Beverly Hills Part One
Segment Three: Curtis Stone, Owner/Chef of Maude, Beverly Hills Part Two
Segment Four: Roberta Koz Wilson, Cookies for a Koz
Segment Five: Chef Hans Rockenwagner, Rockenwagner Bakery and Café Rockenwagner Part One
Segment Six: Chef Hans Rockenwagner, Rockenwagner Bakery and Café Rockenwagner Part Two
Segment Seven: Matt Bencivenga, Wolfgang Puck Catering and Puck’s Tavern at Honda Center
Segment Eight: Tristen Beamon and Kyle Meyer, BestWinesOnline.com and Pacific Coast Wine Festival

Chef Jet and Producer Andy preview the show.

Valentine’s Day is fast approaching so plan ahead and don’t panic. It falls on a Friday this year. Friday is an especially tough day for restaurants due to Valentine’s Day anxiety so if you want to be a bit more relaxed make your plans for Saturday or Sunday instead. Still the Valentine’s Day orbit but a bit less crazed for the restaurant. You’ll definitely have better service…

Chef jet Tila and Alton BrownFood Network’s “Cutthroat Kitchen” with host Alton Brown is back on Sunday nights for Season 2. Our own Chef Jet Tila is the most frequently appearing solo judge on this tough competition show that requires strategy as well as cooking chops. Look for Jet’s new episodes starting in February.

Congrats to Chef Chris Oh of Seoul Sausage Co. in West Los Angeles. Last Sunday (Jan. 26th.) he competed against three other chefs on Food Network’s “Cutthroat Kitchen.” He won big and took home the most cash of any winner to date!

Everyone’s favorite sexy Aussie Chef is Curtis Stone. He’s opening an intimate new restaurant on Feb. 1st and we’ll get all the 411 right from the source. Fine dining chef Hans Rockenwagner, in recent years, has become known for his line of artisan breads. He’s just opened his most ambitious bakery café to date in Brentwood and joins us to provide the details. Wolfgang Puck is back in Orange County with the newly launched Puck’s Tavern at Honda Center, home of the Anaheim Ducks. The executive chef of Wolfgang Puck Catering is with us to preview what’s on the menu.

All of that and lots more incredible deliciousness on the “SoCal Restaurant Show.”

Curtis StoneYou know Aussie celebrity chef, Curtis Stone, from Bravo’s “Top Chef Masters” which he hosts. He’s now a resident of Los Angeles.

What you may not know is that he has a serious culinary background. He trained with the legendary English Chef, Marco Pierre White. Chef Curtis worked his way up Marco Pierre White’s tall culinary ladder and eventually became the Head Chef of Quo Vadis in London.

On February 1st Curtis Stone opens Maude in Beverly Hills. Maude is named after his grandmother. It’s an intimate 25 seats and Chef Curtis will actually be there cooking. The menu will change monthly and all of the nine tasting plates served each night will contain a featured ingredient.

His most recent cookbook, What’s for Dinner?: Delicious Recipes for a Busy Life was published last year by Ballantine Books Hardcover. The concept is getting dinner on the table without a hassle. The book features 130 effortless and inspired recipes that carry Chef Curtis’ promise of working.

Roberta Koz WilsonIt’s almost Valentine’s Day and what more thoughtful edible gift than absolutely delicious chocolate chip cookies baked in small batches! The big plus is that each sale benefits The Starlight Children’s Foundation.

Roberta Koz Wilson (jazz saxophone great Dave Koz’s sister) of Cookies for a Koz joins us to share the inspirational story. The cookies are a tribute to their late mother, Audrey, who created the original cookie recipe. The truth is that these famous cookies opened a lot of doors for Dave in his early days as a struggling musician!

The Red Velvet Cookie was originally created as a Valentine’s Day special. It became so popular that it was added to the year-round line. It’s their take on a moist and delicious Red Velvet Cupcake.

Hans RockenwagnerChef Hans Rockenwagner burst on the local Venice dining scene in 1985 when he opened the original (40 seat) Rockenwagner on Abbot Kinney Blvd. where Joe’s is now.

In 1991 Rockenwagner moved to a much larger space in the Frank Gehry-designed Edgemar Complex in Santa Monica.

White asparagus, in season, became a signature menu item.

Hans eventually discovered there was more money in artisan bread and eventually closed Rockenwagner to concentrate on his growing wholesale bread baking business. He now has 60 bakers working around the clock seven days a week! Rockenwagner Bakery is a fixture at area Farmers Markets including the Sunday Beverly Hills Farmers Market.

Cafe RockenwagnerIn addition to the growing wholesale bakery Hans Rockenwagner has a network of busy bakery cafes in Santa Monica, Venice, and Mar Vista. The most ambitious café to date just launched in Brentwood. This Café Rockenwagner is in the bw (a high-rise luxury apartment building) at the corner of Barrington Ave. and Wilshire Blvd.

Besides a full food menu there is on an on-site pastry chef here so there is an impressive selection of fresh breakfast pastries, desserts, breads and pretzels available.

Pucks Tavern at Honda CenterCelebrated chef Wolfgang Puck and Wolfgang Puck Catering have just launched two new dining destinations at Honda Center, the home of the Anaheim Ducks. They are Puck’s Tavern, an approachable fine-dining restaurant serving modern comfort food and The Window at Puck’s Tavern, a made-to-order pizza concession stand. Both operations are located on the South Side of the arena’s main level.

Open during Honda Center’s events, Puck’s Tavern (230 seats) caters to both the general public and ticketholders alike. The 7,000 square-foot, indoor-outdoor restaurant features a direct entrance to the arena allowing a seamless transition from a sit-down meal or private event to the evening’s entertainment.

Matt Bencivenga, Executive Chef and Partner of Wolfgang Puck Catering joins us to chat about the opening of Puck’s Tavern and Wolfgang’s high-profile return to Orange County.

Tristen Beamon and Kyle MeyerIf you’re a wine lover then the upcoming Pacific Coast Wine Festival evening on March 1st at The Island Hotel in Newport Beach to benefit the Pacific Symphony is definitely for you.

The evening starts off with tastings from highly touted wineries including Domaine Faively and Nickel & Nickel. The live and silent auction will feature renowned selections such as Margaux, Mouton, Paul Hobbs, and Screaming Eagle. The sumptuous dinner will be followed by a select chocolate and port tasting.

All the impressive wine selections for the benefit and auctions have been meticulously curated by Tristen Beamon and Kyle Meyer of Orange County’s Bestwinesonline.

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Curtis Stone, Owner/Chef of Maude, Beverly Hills Part One
Segment Three: Curtis Stone, Owner/Chef of Maude, Beverly Hills Part Two
Segment Four: Roberta Koz Wilson, Cookies for a Koz
Segment Five: Chef Hans Rockenwagner, Rockenwagner Bakery and Café Rockenwagner Part One
Segment Six: Chef Hans Rockenwagner, Rockenwagner Bakery and Café Rockenwagner Part Two
Segment Seven: Matt Bencivenga, Wolfgang Puck Catering and Puck’s Tavern at Honda Center
Segment Eight: Tristen Beamon and Kyle Meyer, BestWinesOnline.com and Pacific Coast Wine Festival