Show 49, November 23, 2013: Entrepreneur Dave Danhi the founder, director, and executive chef of The Grilled Cheese Truck

Dave Danhi of the Grilled Cheese TruckDave Danhi is the founder, director, and executive chef of The Grilled Cheese Truck. This was the first gourmet food truck to go national and there are big plans to expand through a novel franchising program. A novel program is in the works to sell franchises to returning veterans and it’s a turnkey concept that’s already been tested with great success. A huge following on social media was the initial key to getting this business going. The Big Cheese himself joins us to recount this unlikely success story.

Dave is also a much sought-out executive recruiter for the Hospitality Industry. His firm is DD Factor. We’ll talk to him about this little known (but vitally important) field, also. You honestly don’t find suitable executive chefs and general managers on CraigsList!

Play

November 23: Grilled Cheese Truck, Barbara Fairchild, Mad Hungry Woman, Anaheim White House, Brad A. Johnson, Skyler Reeves

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Entrepreneur Dave Danhi the founder, director, and executive chef of The Grilled Cheese Truck Part One
Segment Three: Entrepreneur Dave Danhi the founder, director, and executive chef of The Grilled Cheese Truck Part Two
Segment Four: Barbara Fairchild, past long-time Editor of Bon Appetit Magazine, food journalist, cookbook author, educator
Segment Five: Anita Lau of the “Mad Hungry Woman” Blog
Segment Six: Bruno Serato, chef/proprietor of Anaheim White House
Segment Seven: Brad A. Johnson, restaurant critic for the Orange County Register
Segment Eight: Skyler Reeves, master barman

Chef Jet and Producer Andy preview the show.

It’s a day of unusually colorful characters on the “SoCal Restaurant Show.”

Enjoy the unlikely saga of The Big Cheese of The Grilled Cheese Truck, Dave Danhi. We’ll also have the Mad Hungry Woman blogger with us talking about a recent dining discovery in San Diego that’s a delightful Italian-Japanese fusion.

Dave Danhi of the Grilled Cheese TruckDave Danhi is the founder, director, and executive chef of The Grilled Cheese Truck. This was the first gourmet food truck to go national and there are big plans to expand through a novel franchising program. A huge following on social media was the initial key to getting this business going. The Big Cheese himself joins us to recount this unlikely success story.

Dave is also a much sought-out executive recruiter for the Hospitality Industry. His firm is DD Factor. We’ll talk to him about this little known (but vitally important) field, also. You honestly don’t find suitable executive chefs and general managers on CraigsList!

Dave completes the fascinating story of how The Grilled Cheese Truck got to where it is today (a national phenomenon) and what the future holds. Keep in mind he’s a high level executive chef by background.

Dave also profiles his other business entity, DD Factor. This is an executive recruiting firm designed just for the hospitality business. If you need an executive chef this is the place to go.

Barbara FairchildMost Californians remember Barbara Fairchild as the long-time Editor of Bon Appetit Magazine. She now is an accomplished cookbook author, food journalist, and educator.

Barbara was recently in the relatively unspoiled Sonoma County Wine Country. She shares some of her best dining experiences including the One-Star Michelin Farmhouse Inn & Restaurant in Forestville (housed in a real Farmhouse,) and the more casual Healdsburg Shed in Healdsburg.

Barbara will join us again in December to share her recent San Francisco dining adventures.

Anita Lau of Diary of a Mad Hungry WomanAnita Lau is best known to the listening audience of the “SoCal Restaurant Show” as the creative force behind the “Mad Hungry Woman” blog. Anita is regularly out and about in Orange County, San Diego, and sometimes even the Los Angeles area reporting on her dining out adventures. She particularly seeks out the less obvious hidden gems.

San Diego, we haven’t forgotten you.

Anita Lau of the Mad Hungry Woman blog is with us with a San Diego dining discovery. Anita was a finalist for a Golden Foodie award in Journalism this year.

Anita’s find is Ristorante Kaz. This is an intriguing Japanese Italian fusion cuisine spot. Anita’s favorite bite was an angel hair pasta dish with creamy sea urchin with spinach and salmon roe.

Bruno Serato of the Anaheim White HouseThe ever gracious Bruno Serato is the highly visible owner and culinary force behind the historic Anaheim White House. It’s housed in a stately mansion dating back to 1909. Bruno has been the keeper of the flame there since 1987. This year the menu was enhanced to offer premium steaks, too. Bruno likes to now characterize the establishment as an “Italian Steak House.”

The Holidays are Bruno’s favorite time of the year as he fund-raises to benefit the Caterina’s Club’s Motel Kids. December marks his annual toy drive to collect gifts for some 2,000 Motel Kids. Every night Bruno feeds 500 hungry kids.

It all starts with the 26th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony and Dinner at the Anaheim White House on Sunday, November 24th. It always sells out so make your plans accordingly. There is real snow on the ground…

Bruno has just introduced a new 3-course Sunday Brunch Menu with free-flowing Champagne at the Anaheim White House.

Photography by Brad A JohnsonBrad A. Johnson is the James Beard Award-winning restaurant critic for The Orange County Register. He’s been there about a year now.

Brad has just written his anxiously awaited, first 4-Star review. It’s quite a “wow” but, perhaps, a bit unexpected…

Brad talks about what is worthy of 4-Stars and the restaurant earning that rarified praise. This was actually three articles in The Register, including a Sunday “Travel” piece.

Skyler ReevesSkyler Reeves is a master barman. Denizens of Downtown Los Angeles’ popular nightlife scene will know him from 213 Downtown. He’s one of the best…

His new project is co-producing the upcoming “Golden State of Cocktails.” It takes place January 27th through 30th on the historic top floor of the Los Angeles Times Building in Downtown Los Angeles. This space was the former executive offices and the grandeur of the floor will surely impress. The educational event is designed for the trade as well as beverage enthusiasts.

“California’s long awaited large-scale cocktail event is finally here: Announcing Golden State of Cocktails! Staged in Los Angeles, the West Coast’s largest city and California’s anchor, Golden State of Cocktails celebrates all aspects of cocktail culture, both industry and consumer, from San Francisco to Los Angeles to San Diego and everywhere in between. Be a part of the inaugural event in one or more ways. From experiential interactive labs, take-away stations and brand immersion rooms to small- and large-scale parties, Golden State of Cocktails takes a hands-on approach to the learning experience and celebrates the best of what California cocktail culture is all about.”

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Entrepreneur Dave Danhi the founder, director, and executive chef of The Grilled Cheese Truck Part One
Segment Three: Entrepreneur Dave Danhi the founder, director, and executive chef of The Grilled Cheese Truck Part Two
Segment Four: Barbara Fairchild, past long-time Editor of Bon Appetit Magazine, food journalist, cookbook author, educator
Segment Five: Anita Lau of the “Mad Hungry Woman” Blog
Segment Six: Bruno Serato, chef/proprietor of Anaheim White House
Segment Seven: Brad A. Johnson, restaurant critic for the Orange County Register
Segment Eight: Skyler Reeves, master barman

Show 42, October 5, 2013: Carlos Salgago, Executive Chef and Proprietor of Taco Maria

Carlos Salgado of Taco MariaTaco Maria, newly opened at SoCo, represents a wonderful success story for the Salgado Family.

Carlos is a trained pastry chef with extensive experience in fine-dining establishments in the Bay Area. Carlos returned to Orange County and with his sister, Silvia, launched a gourmet food truck, Taco Maria, in 2011.

In it’s first year Taco Maria was awarded the distinction of being named one of OC’s best new restaurants by both The Orange County Register and OC Weekly.

Taco Maria earned great acclaim as the featured gourmet food truck at the Saturday morning Farmers Market at SoCo. The lines were long (everything was created fresh to order) and the devoted following huge!

Last year Carlos sold the food truck to create a real destination restaurant at SoCo. Taco Maria opened in September for dinner only and just recently added lunch. Weekend brunch is planned for the near future. A beautiful patio overlooks the garden courtyard adjacent to The OC Mart Mix.

It’s an open kitchen so you can see the craft and care which goes into the preparation of each dish. Even the tortillas are hand-made and prepared throughout the day.

Play

October 5: Live from Patchwork Show: Edible Editon

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Jet Tila, host of the “SoCal Restaurant Show”
Segment Three: Carlos Salgago, Executive Chef and Proprietor of Taco Maria
Segment Four: Nicole Stevenson, co-producer of Patchwork Show – Edible Edition
Segment Five: Bill Esparza, the Mexican Food Maestro
Segment Six: Brad A. Johnson, Restaurant Critic for The Orange County Register Part One
Segment Seven: Brad A. Johnson, Restaurant Critic for The Orange County Register Part Two
Segment Eight: Marin Howarth, co-owner and Executive Chef Noah Blom of ARC restautant at SoCo

Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris preview the show.

Patchwork Show Edible EditionToday we’re broadcasting live from the Patchwork Show – Edible Edition at South Coast Collection in Costa Mesa from 10 to Noon.

Patchwork Edible is an annual creative food summit bringing visionary chefs, authors, bloggers, handmade craft vendors and food artisans together with attendees for a comprehensive and entertaining weekend of eating, learning, tasting and shopping.

Admission is free…

The always stylish, Kedric Francis, the Executive Editor of both Coast Magazine and The Orange County Register Magazine joins us as guest co-host.

Luckyrice Night MarketHost Jet Tila is in Las Vegas for the LUCKYRICE Night Market on the pool deck of The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas tonight from 7 to 10:00 p.m. Jet will be serving his signature Khao Soi (a Northern Thailand favorite) and seasonal flavors of his refreshing Kuma Snow Cream.

VIP and General Admission tickets are available.

Carlos Salgado of Taco MariaChef Carlos Salgado has a background as a fine-dining pastry chef. He relocated back to Orange County after his tenure at Commis in San Francisco and launched, with his family, the ambitious Taco Maria food truck in Orange County in 2011. He was honored with the distinction of being named the best gourmet food truck in OC by both major newspapers.

On Saturday’s Taco Maria was the featured food truck at The Farmers Market at SoCo. Carlos developed such a loyal and vast following that he was compelled to launch a real, full-service restaurant, including an outside heated patio, at SoCo.

Right now it’s dinner only with lunch and weekend brunch to follow. They hand-make their fresh tortillas on the spot. The meats and seafood are wood grilled and sustainable. The produce comes from local Orange County Farmers Markets.

Nicole StevensonPatchwork Show: Edible Edition co-producer Nicole Stevenson join us to preview the first-ever Patchwork Show: Edible Edition at SoCo in Costa Mesa this Weekend, Oct. 5th (from 11 to 8 p.m.) and Oct. 6th (from 11 to 5 p.m.)

This free, Weekend festival will showcase the flourishing artisan food movement in SoCal through an interactive experience filled with baking programs, food trucks, restaurant pop-ups, book signings, beer and wine gardens, samples and more!

The whole family – not just foodies – will enjoy the hands-on activities from DIY workshops to educational panels hosted by award-winning chefs to handmade products for sale from more than 90 food artisans and modern handmade businesses.

Bill EsparzaBill Esparza, the “Mexican Food Maestro” and authority on the food of Baja California is with us.

Bill leads escorted food tours of Tijuana and Northern Baja for journalists and the public alike. He’s given advice to Travel Channel’s Andrew Zimmern, among other notables.

Bill is moderating “Justin Timberlake good for Tequila? Gentrification of Mexican Spirits” panel tomorrow afternoon (Sunday) at Patchwork Show: Edible Edition. Mezcal and Tequila will be sampled as part of the discussion.

Photography by Brad A JohnsonIt’s been about a year since Brad A. Johnson joined the Orange County Register as their high profile restaurant critic. Previously The Register’s restaurant reviews tended to accentuate the positive.

Brad is a James Beard Award-winning food and travel journalist who brings a more worldly view to his writing which includes praise and specific criticism.

Johnson will discuss how a restaurant critic approaches reviewing a restaurant and what the process is. He’ll also touch on a year’s worth of observations of the Orange County dining scene.

It’s fair to say the restaurant opening of the year in Orange County is ARC right here at SoCo in Costa Mesa. The reviews have been ethereal. Last Sunday they were the recipient of the Golden Foodie for “Best New Restaurant.”

Marin Howarth and Executive Chef Noah BlomARC owners Marin Howarth and Executive Chef Noah Blom join us to talk about their wild ride.

It’s all from-scratch cooking with locally sourced ingredients. Every menu item is unusually cooked over an open fire. It’s an open kitchen so everything is totally visible to the guest. Great care goes into the preparation of the libations, too, under the supervision of a bar chef. Bitters, infusions, syrups, and sodas are all made in-house.

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Jet Tila, host of the “SoCal Restaurant Show”
Segment Three: Carlos Salgago, Executive Chef and Proprietor of Taco Maria
Segment Four: Nicole Stevenson, co-producer of Patchwork Show – Edible Edition
Segment Five: Bill Esparza, the Mexican Food Maestro
Segment Six: Brad A. Johnson, Restaurant Critic for The Orange County Register Part One
Segment Seven: Brad A. Johnson, Restaurant Critic for The Orange County Register Part Two
Segment Eight: Marin Howarth, co-owner and Executive Chef Noah Blom of ARC restautant at SoCo