Show 91, October 4, 2014: Chef Neela Paniz, Indian regional cooking authority

Neela PanizIndian cooking authority, Chef Neela Paniz, grew up in Bombay, India and is fondly remembered by Angelenos as the executive chef and co-owner of the landmark Bombay Café in West Los Angeles which she sold a number of years ago before moving to Napa. In Napa she oversaw a contemporary Indian restaurant, Neela’s. Her new cookbook is The New Indian Slow Cooker.

On Food TV Paniz has competed on Food Network’s Chopped” and was the winning chef of her episode.

“Beautifully illustrated with forty full-color photographs throughout, The New Indian Slow Cooker makes preparing traditional Indian cuisine at home surprisingly effortless. The results will inspire multitudes of Indian food lovers to savor its delicious slow cooker creations often.”

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Show 74, May 31, 2014: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris

Chef Jet and Producer Andy preview the show.

Pioneering California Celebrity Chef Wolfgang Puck with destination restaurants around the globe really needs no introduction. Among many accomplishments he cooks for the VIP guests at the Oscars every year. His new book, Wolfgang Puck Makes it Healthy : Light, Delicious Recipes and Easy Exercises for a Better Life is a true labor of love.

The Orange County Register’s award-winning food writer, Cathy Thomas, has just returned from a cruise on Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth. She shares her travel and food adventures in India and Singapore.

What’s the most exotic coffee bean in the world? Our resident coffee expert from the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf has the unexpected answer. It’s unusual…

The 2nd Annual Tacolandia (“Where All Your Taco Dreams Come True”) is coming up June 28th. The Taco in Chief (a.k.a. “The Street Gourmet,”) Bill Esparza, serves it up.

Understanding and selecting specialty cheese can be a bit intimidating. Cheesemonger extraordinaire, Chester Hastings, to the rescue!

Fireside Tavern is an undiscovered gem of a new destination restaurant in the unlikely location of the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Costa Mesa just off the 405 Freeway. The secret is Executive Chef Scott Brandon.

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

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Show 74, May 31, 2014: Cathy Thomas, food journalist, Orange County Register and Los Angeles Register

Cathy ThomasCathy Thomas is the long-established food writer and former Food Editor at The Orange County Register. She has won numerous well-deserved awards for her journalism and is a good friend of chefs and restaurateurs.

Cathy Thomas was just on a short leg (12 days) of Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth’s World Cruise. Her cruise was Singapore to Dubai. She left the ship for four days on land in India traveling to the Taj Mahal.

Cathy will enlighten us on luxury cruising, Indian street food, and dining at Ku De Ta, a hot restaurant in Singapore with an incredible view. It’s located on the 57th floor of the landmark Marina Sands Hotel.

Look for Cathy’s piece on Indian Street Food and other observations in the upcoming Wednesday, June 4th Food Section in the Los Angeles Register. The article will appear in The Orange County Register on June 11th.

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May 31: Wolfgang Puck, Cathy Thomas, Coffee Bean, Fireside Tavern, Joan’s on Third,

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Cathy Thomas, food journalist, Orange County Register and Los Angeles Register
Segment Three: Jay Isais, Senior Director, Coffee Roasting and Manufacturing, Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf
Segment Four: Chef Wolfgang Puck
Segment Five: Executive Chef Scott Brandon, Fireside Tavern, Costa Mesa
Segment Six: Chester Hastings, Cheesemonger and Chef, Joan’s on Third, Los Angeles
Segment Seven: Bill Esparza, “The Street Gourmet” & Curator for Tacolandia Part One
Segment Eight: Bill Esparza, “The Street Gourmet” & Curator for Tacolandia Part Two

Chef Jet and Producer Andy preview the show.

Pioneering California Celebrity Chef Wolfgang Puck with destination restaurants around the globe really needs no introduction. Among many accomplishments he cooks for the VIP guests at the Oscars every year. His new book, Wolfgang Puck Makes it Healthy : Light, Delicious Recipes and Easy Exercises for a Better Life is a true labor of love.

The Orange County Register’s award-winning food writer, Cathy Thomas, has just returned from a cruise on Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth. She shares her travel and food adventures in India and Singapore.

What’s the most exotic coffee bean in the world ? Our resident coffee expert from the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf has the unexpected answer. It’s unusual…

The 2nd Annual Tacolandia (“Where All Your Taco Dreams Come True”) is coming up June 28th. The Taco in Chief (a.k.a. “The Street Gourmet,”) Bill Esparza, serves it up.

Understanding and selecting specialty cheese can be a bit intimidating. Cheesemonger extraordinaire, Chester Hastings, to the rescue!

Fireside Tavern is an undiscovered gem of a new destination restaurant in the unlikely location of the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Costa Mesa just off the 405 Freeway. The secret is Executive Chef Scott Brandon.

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

Special Note:
Michael Puglisi
You’ve heard Chef Michael Puglisi (ex-Bouchon Beverly Hills) of the soon-to-be Electric City Butcher in The (upcoming) 4th Street Market in Santa Ana on the show.

On Monday, June 2nd Chef Puglisi is part of a special Chef’s Dinner at 320 Main – New American Eatery in Seal Beach.

The 6-course menu is from Chef Puglisi, Chef Jaime Carrano of 320 Main, and Chef Eddie Ruiz of Corazon y Miel. Corazon y Miel in Bell was just included in Jonathan Gold’s 101 Best Restaurants 2014 as presented in the Los Angeles Times.

Chefs Michael and Eddie also work together at the recently opened PICNIK in Old Pasadena. “These three friends are pleased to bring an amazing menu and incredible dining experience for the latest in 320 Main’s Chef’s Dinner series.”

$95 per guest including tax and gratuity.

Reservations & Information: 562.799.6246.

Cathy ThomasCathy Thomas is the long-established food writer and former Food Editor at The Orange County Register. She has won numerous well-deserved awards for her journalism and is a good friend of chefs and restaurateurs.

Cathy Thomas was just on a short leg (12 days) of Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth’s World Cruise. She left the ship for four days on land in India traveling to the Taj Mahal. Cathy will enlighten us on luxury cruising, Indian street food, and dining at Ku De Ta, a hot restaurant in Singapore with an incredible view.

Look for Cathy’s piece on Indian Street Food in an upcoming Wednesday Food Section in the Orange County Register.

Jay Isais of the Coffee Bean and Tea LeafJay (“Eye-Zay-Us”) Isais is the Senior Director, Coffee Roasting and Manufacturing, for the Coffee Bean and Teal Leaf.

The rarest coffee beans in the world (from Sumatra) must be the Kopi Luwak beans. They are “harvested” in an unusual way.

Jay explains this highly sought-after coffee oddity…

Wolfgang PuckWhat is now known as California Cuisine never had a better day than when Celebrity Chef Wolfgang Puck opened the original Spago on The Sunset Strip in 1982. Its ambitions were modest…

Now the Wolfgang Puck Fine Dining Group has restaurants around the world with a second stronghold in Las Vegas.

Chef Puck was the first Chef to cook a meal at New York’s famed James Beard House. He is also the recipient of multiple James Beard Foundation Awards.

Another high-profile division, Wolfgang Puck Catering, provides the food for the Annual Governors Ball for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Wolfgang is better known internationally than many of the celebrities who he graciously serves !

Another unit, Wolfgang Puck Worldwide, Inc. franchises casual Wolfgang Puck restaurants, licenses consumer products, is involved in book publishing, television and internet programming, and other licensing and merchandising efforts.

Wolfgang Puck’s most recent book, Wolfgang Puck Makes It Healthy – Light, Delicious Recipes and Easy Exercises for a Better Life is a personal project for him.
In the words of Chef Wolfgang Puck :

“I never, ever expected to write this book. If you had suggested to me ten years ago, or even five, that my next book would focus on healthy recipes and fitness, I would’ve said you didn’t know me very well.

I have figured out where I can modify ingredients to make a healthier dish. And today I can eat all my favorite foods without overeating anything.

I feel good because of the combination of eating well and exercising I’ve developed. Now I want to help you achieve the same goal, to feel healthy and happy, with plenty of energy to do the things you love to do.”

Scott Brandon of Fireside TavernFireside Tavern is an undiscovered gem of a new destination restaurant in the unlikely location of the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Costa Mesa just off the 405 Freeway. The secret is Executive Chef Scott Brandon.

Chef Scott’s credits include Oysters in Corona del Mar, Crow Bar and Kitchen in Corona del Mar, and LinX in Old Towne Orange.

It’s located just South of South Coast Plaza.

The space is inviting and there is an outside patio with lots of shade.

There is a great Happy Hour menu served daily from 3 to 6:00 p.m. and then again from 10 to midnight. Lots of fun & appealing food selections and libations priced at a good value.

“Fireside is an American gastropub, offering a contemporary menu of upscale tavern fare for lunch and dinner. Fireside features a menu of freshly sourced meat, seafood and cheese, along with a bar menu of small plates. The bar serves an array of American wines, craft draft beer, and signature cocktails.”

Chester HastingsCheesemonger (and Chef) Chester Hastings of Joan’s on Third in Los Angeles literally wrote the book on enjoying cheese. His latest title is The Cheesemonger’s Seasons – Recipes for Enjoying Cheese with Ripe Fruits and Vegetables. His first cheese book was the well-reviewed, The Cheesemonger’s Kitchen.

The Cheesemonger’s Season contains ninety amazing cheese-centric recipes, from appetizers to desserts, all of them simple, and each one showcasing the absolute best of what the season has to offer.

When Chester started at Joan’s over 12 years ago they carried seven varieties of cheese. Today they stock over 100 varieties of domestic and imported cheeses.

Bill EsparzaThe 2nd Annual Tacolandia (“Where All Your Taco Dreams Come True”) is coming up June 28th at El Pueblo De Los Angeles. The hours are 3 to 7:00 p.m.

The Taco in Chief, Bill Esparza (a.k.a. “The Street Gourmet,”) serves it up.

It’s 40 plus taco vendors, the Tequila Tasting Experience, and live Mariachi entertainment.

Bill previews the incredible taco creations of a number of the chefs participating in LA Weekly’s Tacolandia. The best tacos on food trucks, too…

The 2nd Annual Tacolandia (“Where All Your Taco Dreams Come True”) is coming up June 28th at El Pueblo De Los Angeles. The hours are 3 to 7:00 p.m.

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Cathy Thomas, food journalist, Orange County Register and Los Angeles Register
Segment Three: Jay Isais, Senior Director, Coffee Roasting and Manufacturing, Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf
Segment Four: Chef Wolfgang Puck
Segment Five: Executive Chef Scott Brandon, Fireside Tavern, Costa Mesa
Segment Six: Chester Hastings, Cheesemonger and Chef, Joan’s on Third, Los Angeles
Segment Seven: Bill Esparza, “The Street Gourmet” & Curator for Tacolandia Part One
Segment Eight: Bill Esparza, “The Street Gourmet” & Curator for Tacolandia Part Two

Show 20, March 9, 2013: Barbara Hansen, veteran food & travel journalist

Barbara Hansen of EatMX and LA Weekly Squid InkBarbara had a long tenure with the Los Angeles Times as a senior food staff writer. She specializes in the cuisines of India, Thailand, Korea, Mexico and South America.

She currently writes for the “Squid Ink” blog for the LA Weekly and has two of her own food, wine, and travel blogs: Table Conversation and EatMX.com.

She just completed the Korean Restaurant Guide Los Angeles for the Korean Food Foundation. 40 restaurants in Los Angeles and Orange County are profiled.

The book will eventually be available for downloading on a website but is currently available as a free app for both iPhones and Android phones.

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Show 13, January 19, 2013: Rahul Aggarwal, Director & Founder–Trip Feast

One of the highlights of visiting the 8th Annual Travel & Adventure Show in Long Beach on January 13th was stumbling across Trip Feast, who was exhibiting there. They are based in London. The boutique firm organizes small group tours with a insider’s culinary twist.

You actually cook with chefs from the visited country learning the secrets of the local cuisine.  You can even dine in small groups at the homes of locals.

Food and drink is very much an integral part of the travel experience and Trip Feast visits countries with a rich culinary heritage.

Featured countries (with new stops in development) are India, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Philippines, China, Mexico, South Africa, Portugal, Ireland, Serbia, Morocco, and Lebanon.

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Aarti Sequeira

Aarti SequeiraThe “SoCal Restaurant Show” proudly welcomes Food Network’s Aarti Sequeira as the very first guest on Oct. 6th.

Aarti, a Los Angeles resident, won Season 6 of “Food Network Star” (Food Network’s most-watched series) and went on to create the popular cooking-variety series, “Aarti Party” for food Network. She also competed on “Chopped All-Stars” for her favorite charity, Central City Community Outreach.

This year she was also seen on Cooking Channel with her special, “Hidden Eats, USA.” Early next year Aarti will debut a new series for Cooking Channel.

Aarti just returned from three weeks in India, including the southwest coast where she is from.

In addition to Aarti, our own Jet Tila will be dishing out his recent gastronomic experience at Grant Achatz’s Alinea in the Lincoln Park section of Chicago, Food GPS’ Josh Lurie will look back at last Saturday’s LA Beer Float Showdown as part of the fourth annual LA Beer Week. Speaking of beer, we’ll have Ed Murphy from the Blank Theatre in Hollywood discussing their upcoming Hollywood on Tap event at the Studios at Paramount on October 20th. And Brock Radke of Las Vegas Weekly will discuss what’s new in Las Vegas restaurants both on The Strip and off. Here’s Brock’s notes from his appearance.

It’s no wonder Jet wanted to hear all about the new Bacchanal Buffet at Caesars Palace; the place is so huge, it’s hard to talk about anything else. It’s a big, beautiful buffet, but you might be shocked at how good the food tastes. Here’s what you really need to know to prep for the feast of your life:

The lines have been crazy long since Bacchanal opened last month, up to a 2-hour wait at dinner. Hit it for breakfast or lunch instead, when things move faster. Don’t get caught off guard by the prices, which have been bumped up a bit—$21.99 breakfast, $28.99 lunch, and $44.99 for dinner. Is that too spendy? I think I got my money’s worth just by demolishing the raw seafood bar. Don’t miss the dim sum and Asian soup section, both surprisingly good. Caesars actually stole a chef from Jet’s favorite Vegas ramen shop, Monta, to make sure they were doing it right. Be sure to save room for dessert, particularly the perfect individual soufflés.

As for the Nobu hotel and restaurant set for Caesars, the project got pushed a bit and is now set to open in the first quarter of 2013. So what’s next for the iconic Strip resort? Gordon Ramsay’s Pub, opening in December right off the main casino floor.

Podcasts:

Segment One: Aarti Sequeria – Part One
Segment Two: Aarti Sequeria – Part Two
Segment Three – LA Beer Float Showdown
Segment Four – Brock Radke’s Las Vegas Weekly Roundup
Segment Five – Jet at Alinea
Segment Six – Hollywood on Tap