Show 378, June 20, 2020: Donato Poto, Co-Proprietor, Providence Restaurant, Hollywood

Donato Poto of Providence plus Connie and Ted'sFor 15 years, Providence in Hollywood has elevated the standard of modern American seafood restaurants with exemplary service. Newly reopened for dine-in you can again experience Chef Michael Cimarusti’s award-winning cuisine in the heart of Los Angeles, welcomed by one of L.A.’s legendary hosts, co-owner Donato Poto.

“Chef Cimarusti is completely dedicated to procuring the finest sustainable seafood—from regional coasts and international waters—and treats those ingredients with uncompromising respect and sophisticated technique. “First and foremost, what guides us here is sustainability,” Cimarusti says. “We use only wild-caught, sustainable products, mostly from American waters, and look to highlight their finest qualities.””

Restaurateur Donato Poto is with us to reminisce, celebrate the 15th Anniversary and look to the future.


Show 361, February 22, 2020: Tom Bergin’s, Los Angeles – Executive Chef Erik Punzalan – Part One

Erik Punzalan of Tom BerginsTom Bergin’s located on S. Fairfax Avenue in Los Angeles (just south of Wilshire Blvd) is a landmarked institution. Also famous as the “House of Irish Coffee.” Opened in 1936 it holds one of the area’s longest continuously running liquor licenses. It even has its own parking lot – a true, but convenient, rarity in Los Angeles these days.

It’s had its ups and downs since the 2nd owner in its long history sold the establishment in 2011. Last year it was threatened with certain demolition but the new, astute property owners listened to the outpouring of community support and has reopened it under the culinary guidance of Chef Erik Punzalan (ex-Firefly.) We’ll meet him.

Tom Bergin’s is also known for the shamrocks (inscribed with names) covering most walls and the ceiling. The shamrocks, over the years, were awarded to loyal customers. Of course, many celebrities from Hollywood and professional sports are among the recipients of a coveted shamrock.


Show 347, November 2, 2019: Gayot’s Orange County Correspondent, Rich Manning

Rich Manning of Gayot in the AM830 KLAA StudiosLast month The Musso & Frank Grill in Hollywood celebrated a century of Family tradition and integrity. They were even honored with an “Award of Excellence” from the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce in the form of a “Walk of Fame” sidewalk star. Also commemorating the 100th Anniversary is a coffee table book, The Musso & Frank Grill. It’s both a history and cookbook.

“What would become Musso & Frank Grill was founded in 1919 by Frank Toulet, who three years later formed a fateful partnership with a similarly forward-looking restaurateur named Joseph Musso. In 1922, the two men hired French chef Jean Rue – a culinary master who would wind up showcasing his artistry at Musso & Frank for 53 years, and creating a menu that remains mostly intact to this day (amazing enough, current Chef J.P. Amateau is only the third person to serve in that position in the restaurant’s entire 100-year history, folllowing the tenures of Jean Rue and his successor, Michel Bourger!)”

“In 1927, Mr. Musso and Mr. Toulet sold their restaurant to a duo of Italian immigrants named Joseph Carissimi and John Mosso (a coincidentally similar name) and today Musso & Frank is owned and operated by the families of Mr. Mosso’s three granddaughters: John and Cathy Echeverria and their son, Mark Echeverria; Steve and Anne Jones; and Richard and Kristen Kohlmeyer.”

Gayot– The Guide to the Good Life’s Orange County correspondent, Rich Manning, was just at Musso’s and highlights his anniversary dining experience there.


Show 326, June 1, 2019: Bar Chef / Master Mixologist Matthew Biancaniello

Celebrity Mixologist Matthew BiancanielloAcclaimed mixologist / bar chef Matthew Biancaniello creates adventurous cocktail experiences. He formulates cocktails based on farm-fresh and unique, organic ingredients. Never working off a set cocktail menu, Biancaniello visits at least five different local farmers markets a week to source his ingredients, which inspire his imaginative cocktails. This is the Art of Omakase, honoring how the customer and bartender create a special experience together.

Matthew Biancaniello, the former cocktail chef for the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel’s famous Library Bar, is creating cocktails the world has never tasted before. Going beyond the quotidian Whiskey Sour or Tom Collins, Biancaniello is mixing it up with imaginative drinks such as “The Heirloom Tomato Mojito”, a twenty-five-year-aged balsamic vinegar and strawberry libation named “The Last Tango in Modena,” and a fresh arugula-infused “Roquette.”

We’re artfully shaking the cocktail shaker with bar chef Matthew. He’s currently doing a Limited Residency at The Library Bar at The Hollywood Roosevelt on Tuesday & Wednesday evenings from 6:00 p.m. to Midnight through June 26th. Matthew observes that due to the popularity of his current Residency at the Hollywood Roosevelt the look is to now extend his program there through the Summer! Cheers…


Show 281, July 14, 2018: Executive Chef / Proprietor Daniel Mattern, Friends & Family, Thai Town Los Angeles

Daniel MatternFriends & Family, a new Thai Town staple and beloved dining destination, launched dinner service this last week. The well-received hybrid dining / takeaway concept created by Chefs Daniel Mattern and Roxana Jullapat transforms into full dinner service in the evenings (Wednesday through Sunday), offering a variety of shared plates and mains that incorporate sustainably-raised, hearth-roasted meats, seasonal vegetables, farmers’ market salads and their favorite heritage grains.

“We’re ready to add a great neighborhood dinner option to Thai Town,” said Mattern. “With a comfortable vibe and market-driven food, it’ll be a unique spot in the neighborhood, and the perfect place for an impromptu dinner or casual meet-up meal with friends before catching a show at the Greek.”

“To start, the seasonally-rotating menu will feature savory items paired with bright summer produce such as Chicken Liver Toast with Apricot and Nigella and Spiced Half Chicken with New Potatoes and Purslane Salad as well as hearty mains including Wild Salmon Grilled in Grape Leaves over Almond Wood and Hanger Steak with Kimchi Mayo and Crispy Greens. Guests will also enjoy dishes that focus on the use of heritage grains including the Spelt Pretzel with Mustard Dipping Sauce or the Smoked Fish & Beer Rarebit with Housemade Rye Sourdough, both perfect for sharing over a pint (or two).”

Complementing the market-driven fare will be a selection of natural wines hand-picked by Mattern and Jullapat to pair with the menu’s robust flavors, as well as craft beer on tap from some of their favorite local breweries including Eagle Rock Brewery, Craftsman Brewing and Beachwood Brewing.

To finish, diners will be able to indulge in seasonal housemade desserts like Jullapat’s fan-favorite, Huckleberry Meringue with Blueberry Compote and Buttermilk-Blueberry Ice Cream or Sorghum Sticky Pudding, Dates and Roasted Apricots.

Since it’s National Ice Cream Month it’s of interest to note all the ice creams and sorbets served at Friends & Family are made in-house.

We pull the busy Chef Daniel off the line for a chat.



Show 194, October 22, 2016: Shake Shack slides into Greater Los Angeles

Roadside Double Burger at Shake Shack HollywoodIn the last year the New York-based cult favorite burger emporium, Shake Shack, has opened three busy Shacks locally in West Hollywood, Glendale and Hollywood.

What’s next ? Shake Shack’s Culinary Director, Mark Rosati, is back with an update. A Roadside Double with a side of Crinkle Cut Cheese Fries, please.

There was a glitch in connecting with Mark. We hope to have him back at another time. Chef Andrew and Andy instead talk about Shake Shack from a consumer point-of-view.

Shake Shack sprouted from a hot dog cart in Madison Square Park in Manhattan to support the Madison Square Park Conservancy’s first art installation. The cart was quite the success, with Shack fans lined up daily for three summers.

In 2004, a permanent kiosk opened in the park: Shake Shack was born. This modern day “roadside” burger stand serves up delicious burgers, hot dogs, frozen custard, shakes, beer, wine and more. An instant neighborhood fixture, Shake Shack welcomed people from all over the city, country and world who gathered together to enjoy fresh, simple, high-quality versions of the classics in a majestic setting. The rest, as they say, is burger history.


Show 186, August 27, 2016: Los Angeles Times The Taste, Preview

Noelle CarterThe Los Angeles Times’ The Taste is back Labor Day Weekend on the backlot at Paramount Pictures Studios in Hollywood. It’s perhaps the ultimate Summer epicurean pop-up and block party featuring the talents of chefs, bartenders and restaurateurs. Our guests are Sunday Block Party’s Host, Noelle Carter, Times Test Kitchen Director, and Michael Flood of the L.A. Regional Food Bank.

A panel of the Sunday Block Party hosted by Noelle Carter is “Waste Not Want Not: Sustainable Uses for Food Waste.” It’s at 12:45 p.m. on September 4th. on the Taste Bar Stage. Noelle is the moderator and Michael Flood of the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank is a panelist. Food waste of perfectly edible food should be an incredible concern to all of us.


Show 174, June 4, 2016: Chef Greg Bernhardt, Paley Restaurant, Hollywood

Greg BernhardtPaley restaurant is located in the restored Columbia Square, the birthplace of the Golden Age of Hollywood. During its heyday, the restaurant at Columbia Square was home to the celebrities, executives and others working in the area.

Paley reimagines that creative culture for the modern age. Chef Greg Bernhardt (ex-Church & State), at the forefront of the California farm to table movement, serves a dynamic menu of seasonal and local ingredients in classic dishes with a modern twist. He joins us.

Paley is named in celebration of the artistic and innovative era shaped by Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS) CEO and progressive visionary William S. Paley. Chef Greg Bernhardt serves a menu of dynamic and modern California cuisine with influences from L.A.’s multicultural heritage matched with unobtrusive service and a spirit of warmth and respect.

Owned and operated by worldwide hospitality group Plan Do See, Paley is named in celebration of the artistic and innovative era shaped by CBS visionary William S. Paley and his wife, Babe.

With the opening of Columbia Square in 1939, William S. Paley ushered in the Golden Age of Hollywood. Paley strives to reintroduce the glamour and excitement of Hollywood’s glory days.

Paley is now open for lunch, dinner and Weekend Brunch. Breakfast is coming soon…Paley features distinct dining areas. Inside, guests are greeted by the elegant bar with lounge seating, an intimate dining area at the core and a chef’s counter and table overlooking the open kitchen. An inviting shaded, landscaped outside patio located in the Courtyard of the former Columbia Square is another appealing dining area of Paley.


Show 171, May 14, 2016: Owner / Executive Chef Brendan Collins of Birch, Larry’s and The Corner Door

Brendan CollinsAt the age of 15, Chef Brendan Collins quit secondary school to follow his dream and enroll in culinary school, where he was classically trained in French technique. By 17, the talented Nottingham native had his first job at London’s La Gavroche, a Michelin two-star restaurant.

Today Collins is the Executive Chef and Proprietor of Birch in Hollywood, Larry’s in Venice as well as the Executive Chef of The Corner Door in Culver City. On Sunday, May 15th he’s part of the celebration of the 25th Anniversary of the Hollywood Farmers Market.

Chef Collins is performing a cooking demonstration on the Cooking Stage at 12 Noon with a recipe from his new book, Cooking Blokes & Artichokes with a prior book-signing at 10:30 a.m. The heart-felt forward is by Celebrity Chef Curtis Stone. Much earlier in their careers they worked together in the London kitchen of Marco Pierre White.

“Are you looking for tasty, no bullshit food? You’ve come to the right place. Cooking, Blokes + Artichokes is for every bloke searching for inspiration and a solid guide to good cooking. Brendan’s 100 straightforward recipes can help any modern man broaden his kitchen skills – from making proper vinaigrette to the foolproof technique for braising meat.”

The Hollywood Farmers Market and the parent non-profit, SEE-LA, are celebrating 25 successful years of providing the Los Angeles community with sustainable and fresh produce with special market events each Sunday in May. The Sunday event series for the balance of May features cookbook signings and demonstrations by a few of Los Angeles’ most celebrated chefs and cookbook authors


Show 171, May 14, 2016: Executive Pastry Chef Dahlia Narvaez, Osteria Mozza & Pizzeria Mozza

Dahlia Narvaez at the James Beard AwardsCongratulations to native Angeleno, Chef Dahlia Narvaez, the Executive Pastry Chef of both Osteria Mozza and Pizzeria Mozza in Hollywood. Chef Dahlia was presented with the 2016 James Beard Foundation Award for Outstanding Pastry Chef in Chicago at Lyric Opera on May 2nd. She is our special guest.

Dahlia Narvaez developed a love for food when cooking for her family after school in Highland Park. Trading the classroom for the kitchen, Narvaez left school for a job at the Conga Room at the age of 22.

Looking to take the next step in her career, Dahlia confidently strode through the doors of La Brea Bakery and asked for a counter job. But she never worked a minute behind the counter, vaulting immediately to the kitchen at Nancy Silverton’s Campanile where, in 2003, she was name Executive Pastry Chef.

Dahlia left Campanile in 2006 to assume the role of Executive Pastry Chef for what was to soon become Osteria Mozza and Pizzeria Mozza. Dahlia developed the menus and pastry departments for all of Mozza’s LA restaurants and oversees the department in Newport Beach and Singapore.

As a side project Chef Dahlia also created the distinctive dessert menu at Chef Chris Feldmeier’s Moruno located in the Original Farmers Market at Third & Fairfax. We enthusiastically recommend the Fried Biscuits with tangerine thyme marmalade and vanilla bean ice cream. It’s really all in the Family as Chef Dahlia and Chef Chris are married.