Show 534, July 15, 2023: Preview of Long Beach Burger Week with EJ’s Pub with General Manager Richard Avila

Richard Avila Ej's Pub

Long Beach residents and visitors alike are in for a treat as dozens of local restaurants and pop-ups will offer unique over-the-top Burgers and value-priced Burger Offers when the 3rd annual Long Beach Burger Week returns July 23-20, 2023. Organized by local non-profit Long Beach Food & Beverage, the organization felt that in addition to encouraging local and surrounding “foodies” to enjoy what the expanding Long Beach culinary community has to offer, events like Burger Week support the local economy. It’s summertime and who doesn’t love a good burger?

One of the participating restaurants in the 3rd Annual Long Beach Burger Week is EJ’s Pub located in Bixby Knolls. The former Irish Pub, EJ Malloy’s, morphed into EJ’s Pub in 2017. It’s an upbeat, neighborhood sports bar offering well-prepared American comfort food, draft micro beers and ample patio seating.

One Burger Week special is their Bixby Knolls Garlic Burger. It’s a half-pound Angus beef patty with Swiss cheese, Irish stout onion spread, crispy garlic fries and pepper rings served on grilled garlic toast.

General Manager Richard Avila is out guest to preview their burger week menu with spatula in hand.

Show 533, July 8, 2023: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

“The area of Leynes, in Beaujolais, France and its historic four-story Château De Lavernette are right at the crossroads of Beaujolais and the Mâconnais. Down across the road from the château, to the east, grows a Chardonnay vineyard in limestone soil for its crémant and Beaujolais Blanc. Up on the broad slope just southwest of the château grows Gamay in granite soil for its two red Beaujolais, plus two small parcels of Chardonnay in more limey soils that are reserved for its Bourgogne Blanc. Across a tiny creek to the north of the château is the southern boundary of the Pouilly-Fuissé appellation. A hill goes steeply up from that creek to the village of Chaintré, and on this flank the château farms four small parcels in limestone to make two Pouilly-Fuissé cuvées. The château has been passed down through the Lavernette family since 1596, when Philibert Bernard de Lavernette bought the property from the monks of Tournus. We’re discussing Chateau De Lavernette’s Beaujolais Blanc 2020 “Les Vignes de la Roche” and Beaujolais Leynes “Le Clos” 2021 with Winemaker Kerrie de Boissieu who joins us from Beaujolais, France.”

Long Beach residents and visitors alike are in for a treat as dozens of local restaurants and pop-ups will offer unique over-the-top Burgers and value-priced Burger Offers when the 3rd annual Long Beach Burger Week returns July 23-20, 2023. Organized by local non-profit Long Beach Food & Beverage, the organization felt that in addition to encouraging local and surrounding “foodies” to enjoy what the expanding Long Beach culinary community has to offer, events like Burger Week support the local economy. It’s summertime and who doesn’t love a good burger? One of the participating restaurants in the 3rd Annual Long Beach Burger Week is Chef Kat’s fast-casual, Hangry Belly (established in 2020) located in SteelCraft in Bixby Knolls. It’s locally owned. “When you’re feeling hangry, Hangry Belly has got you covered.” Proprietress / Chef Kat Vacharabul joins us with spatula in hand.

“Casmalia, California, former cow-town of the Old West, is where California-style barbecuing was brought to perfection by the pioneers. The Hitching Post (having celebrated their 70th Anniversary of Ostini Family ownership last year) has brought this live-oak California-style barbecuing to perfection bringing choice, aged beef to the ultimate of gourmet flavor and tenderness while keeping alive the traditions of the old romantic West. All Dinners at The Hitching Post (under the culinary direction of Proprietor and Chef Bill Ostini) include fresh vegetable tray, bay shrimp cocktail, dinner salad, choice of home cut French fries, baked potato or grilled vegetables, garlic bread, coffee or tea, ice cream or sherbet. All entrees are prepared on their famous (and Instagramable) indoor barbecue pit, using local red oak wood.” Founder Frank Ostini Sr.’s daughter, Terri Strickland, joins us with a shrimp cocktail in hand. Terri is The Hitching Post’s General Manager.

Aquaculture, the practice of raising fish, shellfish and seaweed, shares many qualities with modern agriculture. Although if offers a lower carbon footprint than other farmed proteins and great potential to deliver high quality, nutritious seafood to our growing population, it must be done responsibly. That’s where the non-profit Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) comes in. Since 2010 ASC’s sea green certification label means your seafood was raised according to the world’s strictest standards for responsible aquaculture, including care for people, fish and the environment.” Athena Davis, ASC’s Marketing Director for North America, joins us with the 411 on ASC certification.

Chef Nick Weber of Populaire at South Coast Plaza has created a three-course, prix-fixe gastronomic tribute to the life and music of iconic performer, Tina Turner, available nightly during the July 11-23, two-week run of the Tony Award-winning musical, TINA – The Tina Turner Musical, at Segerstrom Center for the Arts.. Weber, a music fan, has crafted a culinary journey naming dishes for Turner’s hit songs such as Be Tender with Me Baby (heirloom tomato, ricotta maison, jambon de Bayonne crumble), Nutbush City Limits (select either Duroc pork belly or swordfish, Nardello peppers, hazelnuts, charred soubise, black garlic) and Proud Mary Reprise (Paris Brest –  white chocolate crémeux, peaches, pistachio). The menu is served starting at 4 p.m. and is $55 with optional wine pairings $25, exclusive of tax and gratuity.” Reservations advised.” Chef Nick Weber is our guest with all the delectable details.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel, the menu-maker behind the full-service Calico Fish House (in Huntington Beach) and also the founder of Big Parm (New Jersey-style pizza) in the Mess Hall in Tustin provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is a fan of all styles of pizza. Pizza is ever popular when dining out and also enjoyed at home. Chef Andrew provides his insider’s insight on the state of pizza in the USA. How has the market changed since the pandemic? Is more pizza being prepared at home? Have home deliveries cooled a bit?

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

July 8: Château De Lavernette, Hangry Belly, The Hitching Post, Aquaculture Stewardship Council, Populaire Modern Bistro

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chateau De Lavernette, Beaujolais, France with Winemaker Kerrie de Boissieu
Segment Three: Long Beach Burger Week Preview with Chef Kat Vacharabul of Hangry Belly
Segment Four: The Hitching Post, Casmalia with General Manager Terri Strickland Part One
Segment Five: The Hitching Post, Casmalia with General Manager Terri Strickland Part Two
Segment Six: Aquaculture Stewardship Council with Athena Davis, Marketing Director, North America
Segment Seven: Chef Nick Weber of Populaire at South Coast Plaza. Tribute Menu for “TINA -The Tina Turner Musical.”
Segment Eight: Chef & Co-Host Andrew Gruel with “Ask the Chef”

Andy Harris, Executive Producer and Co-host previews the show.

“The area of Leynes, in Beaujolais, France and its historic four-story Château De Lavernette are right at the crossroads of Beaujolais and the Mâconnais. Down across the road from the château, to the east, grows a Chardonnay vineyard in limestone soil for its crémant and Beaujolais Blanc. Up on the broad slope just southwest of the château grows Gamay in granite soil for its two red Beaujolais, plus two small parcels of Chardonnay in more limey soils that are reserved for its Bourgogne Blanc. Across a tiny creek to the north of the château is the southern boundary of the Pouilly-Fuissé appellation. A hill goes steeply up from that creek to the village of Chaintré, and on this flank the château farms four small parcels in limestone to make two Pouilly-Fuissé cuvées. The château has been passed down through the Lavernette family since 1596, when Philibert Bernard de Lavernette bought the property from the monks of Tournus. We’re discussing Chateau De Lavernette’s Beaujolais Blanc 2020 “Les Vignes de la Roche” and Beaujolais Leynes “Le Clos” 2021 with Winemaker Kerrie de Boissieu who joins us from Beaujolais, France.”

Long Beach residents and visitors alike are in for a treat as dozens of local restaurants and pop-ups will offer unique over-the-top Burgers and value-priced Burger Offers when the 3rd annual Long Beach Burger Week returns July 23-20, 2023. Organized by local non-profit Long Beach Food & Beverage, the organization felt that in addition to encouraging local and surrounding “foodies” to enjoy what the expanding Long Beach culinary community has to offer, events like Burger Week support the local economy. It’s summertime and who doesn’t love a good burger? One of the participating restaurants in the 3rd Annual Long Beach Burger Week is Chef Kat’s fast-casual, Hangry Belly (established in 2020) located in SteelCraft in Bixby Knolls. It’s locally owned. “When you’re feeling hangry, Hangry Belly has got you covered.” Proprietress / Chef Kat Vacharabul joins us with spatula in hand.

“Casmalia, California, former cow-town of the Old West, is where California-style barbecuing was brought to perfection by the pioneers. The Hitching Post (having celebrated their 70th Anniversary of Ostini Family ownership last year) has brought this live-oak California-style barbecuing to perfection bringing choice, aged beef to the ultimate of gourmet flavor and tenderness while keeping alive the traditions of the old romantic West. All Dinners at The Hitching Post include fresh vegetable tray, bay shrimp cocktail, dinner salad, choice of home cut French fries, baked potato or grilled vegetables, garlic bread, coffee or tea, ice cream or sherbet. All entrees are prepared on their famous (and Instagramable) indoor barbecue pit, using local red oak wood.” Founder Frank Ostini Sr.’s daughter, Terri Strickland, joins us with a shrimp cocktail in hand. Terri is The Hitching Post’s General Manager.

“Aquaculture, the practice of raising fish, shellfish and seaweed, shares many qualities with modern agriculture. Although if offers a lower carbon footprint than other farmed proteins and great potential to deliver high quality, nutritious seafood to our growing population, it must be done responsibly. That’s where the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) comes in. Since 2010 ASC’s sea green certification label means your seafood was raised according to the world’s strictest standards for responsible aquaculture, including care for people, fish and the environment.”Athena Davis, ASC’s Marketing Director for North America, joins us with the 411 on ASC certification.

“Chef Nick Weber of Populaire at South Coast Plaza has created a three-course, prix-fixe gastronomic tribute to the life and music of iconic performer, Tina Turner, available nightly during the July 11-23, two-week run of the Tony Award-winning musical, TINA – The Tina Turner Musical, at Segerstrom Center for the Arts. Weber, a music fan, has crafted a culinary journey naming dishes for Turner’s hit songs such as Be Tender with Me Baby (heirloom tomato, ricotta maison, jambon de Bayonne crumble), Nutbush City Limits (select either Duroc pork belly or swordfish, Nardello peppers, hazelnuts, charred soubise, black garlic) and Proud Mary Reprise (Paris Brest – white chocolate crémeux, peaches, pistachio). The menu is served starting at 4 p.m. and is $55 with optional wine pairings $25, exclusive of tax and gratuity.” Reservations advised.” Chef Nick Weber is our guest with all the delectable details.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel, the menu-maker behind the full-service Calico Fish House (in Huntington Beach) and also the founder of Big Parm (New Jersey-style pizza) in the Mess Hall in Tustin provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is a fan of pizza. Pizza is ever popular when dining out and also at home. Chef Andrew provides his insider’s insight on the state of pizza in the USA. How has the market changed since the pandemic? Is more pizza being prepared at home? Have home deliveries cooled a bit?

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

Kerrie de Boissieu of Chateau de Lavernette

“The area of Leynes, in Beaujolais, France and its historic four-story Château De Lavernette are right at the crossroads of Beaujolais and the Mâconnais. Down across the road from the château, to the east, grows a Chardonnay vineyard in limestone soil for its crémant and Beaujolais Blanc. Up on the broad slope just southwest of the château grows Gamay in granite soil for its two red Beaujolais, plus two small parcels of Chardonnay in more limey soils that are reserved for its Bourgogne Blanc. Across a tiny creek to the north of the château is the southern boundary of the Pouilly-Fuissé appellation. A hill goes steeply up from that creek to the village of Chaintré, and on this flank the château farms four small parcels in limestone to make two Pouilly-Fuissé cuvées.”

“The château has been passed down through the Lavernette family since 1596, when Philibert Bernard de Lavernette bought the property from the monks of Tournus. Early in the twentieth century, René de Boissieu married Gabriëlle Bernard de Lavernette, the heiress of Lavernette, and the property passed to the de Boissieu family. The twin shields on the Lavernette labels represent the families’ coats of arms.”

“René was the grandfather of Bertrand de Boissieu who, with his Dutch wife Anke, had been the director of Lavernette. Bertrand and Anke were the first in the Beaujolais region to farm according to the ecological principles of lutte raisonnée, or reasoned fight, a pragmatic approach to organic farming that was, in their younger days, a radical thing in France. Beginning in 2006, their son Xavier, with his American wife Kerrie, took this one step further by converting the château’s 28 acres of vineyards to biodynamic farming. Certification came in 2010.”

We’re discussing Chateau De Lavernette’s Beaujolais Blanc 2020 “Les Vignes de la Roche” and Beaujolais Leynes “Le Clos” 2021 with Winemaker Kerrie de Boissieu who joins us from Beaujolais, France.

Kat Vacharavbul of Hangry Belly

“Long Beach residents and visitors alike are in for a treat as dozens of local restaurants and pop-ups will offer unique over-the-top Burgers and value-priced Burger Offers when the 3rd annual Long Beach Burger Week returns July 23-20, 2023. Organized by local non-profit Long Beach Food & Beverage, the organization felt that in addition to encouraging local and surrounding “foodies” to enjoy what the expanding Long Beach culinary community has to offer, events like Burger Week support the local economy. It’s summertime and who doesn’t love a good burger?”

One of the participating restaurants in the 3rd Annual Long Beach Burger Week is Chef Kat’s fast-casual, Hangry Belly (established in 2020) located in SteelCraft in Bixby Knolls. It’s locally owned. “When you’re feeling hangry, Hangry Belly has got you covered.”

Offering a chef-inspired menu of over-the-top gourmet, creative burgers and generous portions of premium sides made with passion, there’s an option to satisfy everyone’s taste buds. From their sweet and savory We Be Jammin Burger (1/2 pound Beef Patty, Swiss, Onion Jam, Prosciutto, Arugula, Tomato, Garlic Aioli and served on a Potato Bun) to their spicy Fire Belly Burger. Breakfast specialties centered around house-made biscuits are available Thursday through Sunday. (Their slogan is “No one leaves hangry…”) Hangry Belly will keep your bellies filled and wanting more!

Chef Kat Vacharabul joins us with spatula in hand.

Terri  Strickland of the Hitching Post

“Casmalia, California, former cow-town of the Old West, is where California-style barbecuing was brought to perfection by the pioneers. The Hitching Post (having celebrated their 70th Anniversary of Ostini Family ownership last year) has brought this live-oak California-style barbecuing to perfection bringing choice, aged beef to the ultimate of gourmet flavor and tenderness while keeping alive the traditions of the old romantic West.”

“The weatherworn walls of The Hitching Post’s 120 year-old building are crammed with memories that induce an atmosphere of Western nostalgia to the romantically inclined people who can relax and trade the pressures of the fast, modern world for an evening of Old West hospitality.”

All Dinners at The Hitching Post (a full meal) include fresh vegetable tray, bay shrimp cocktail, dinner salad, choice of home cut French fries, baked potato or grilled vegetables, garlic bread, coffee or tea, ice cream or sherbet. All entrees are prepared on their famous (and Instagramable) indoor barbecue pit, using local red oak wood.”

“Santa Maria Barbecue focuses on slow cooking with indirect heat but over an open wood fire rather than in a closed smoker, and typically features the large tri-tip beef roast. The Hitching Posts build on this local tradition with far more than tri-tip, marrying cowboy customs with excellent cuts of steak and seafood. This is open fire barbecue at its very highest level.”

Founder Frank Ostini Sr.’s daughter, Terri Strickland, joins us with a shrimp cocktail in hand. Terri is The Hitching Post’s General Manager.

Athena Davis of the Aquaculture Stewardship Council

“Aquaculture, the practice of raising fish, shellfish and seaweed, shares many qualities with modern agriculture. Although if offers a lower carbon footprint than other farmed proteins and great potential to deliver high quality, nutritious seafood to our growing population, it must be done responsibly.”

“That’s where the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) comes in. Since 2010 ASC’s sea green certification label means your seafood was raised according to the world’s strictest standards for responsible aquaculture, including care for people, fish and the environment.”

“Today, more than half of all seafood consumed in the U.S. is raised via aquaculture, also known as seafood farming. The industry has made incredible strides over the last few decades, but not all seafood farms are equal and neither are the certifications. ASC is the only certification that can verify your farmed seafood is what it claims to be, where it came from, how it was responsibly raised and how it got to you.”

Athena Davis, ASC’s Marketing Director for North America, joins us with the 411 on ASC certification.

Nick Weber of Populaire Modern Bistro

Chef Nick Weber of Populaire at South Coast Plaza has created a three-course prix-fixe gastronomic tribute to the life and music of iconic performer, Tina Turner, available nightly during the July 11-23, two-week run of the Tony Award-winning musical, TINA – The Tina Turner Musical, at Segerstrom Center for the Arts.”

“Weber, a music fan, has crafted a culinary journey naming dishes for Turner’s hit songs such as Be Tender with Me Baby (heirloom tomato, ricotta maison, jambon de Bayonne crumble), Nutbush City Limits (select either Duroc pork belly or swordfish, Nardello peppers, hazelnuts, charred soubise, black garlic) and Proud Mary Reprise (Paris Brest – white chocolate crémeux, peaches, pistachio). The menu is served starting at 4 p.m. and is $55 with optional wine pairings $25, exclusive of tax and gratuity. Reservations encouraged.”

Chef Nick Weber is our guest.

Chef Andrew Gruel savoring a New Jersey style Pizza

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel, the menu-maker behind the recently launched, full-service Calico Fish House (in the Sunset Beach area of Huntington Beach) and also the founder of Big Parm (New Jersey-style pizza) in the Mess Hall in Tustin provides another timely and informative Ask the Chef segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries.

Chef Andrew is a fan of all styles of pizza. Pizza is ever popular when dining out and also at home. Chef Andrew provides his insider’s insight on the state of pizza in the USA. How has the market changed since the pandemic? Is more pizza being prepared at home? Why is frozen pizza from the supermarket just not the same? Have home deliveries from pizzerias cooled a bit?

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chateau De Lavernette, Beaujolais, France with Winemaker Kerrie de Boissieu
Segment Three: Long Beach Burger Week Preview with Chef Kat Vacharabul of Hangry Belly
Segment Four: The Hitching Post, Casmalia with General Manager Terri Strickland Part One
Segment Five: The Hitching Post, Casmalia with General Manager Terri Strickland Part Two
Segment Six: Aquaculture Stewardship Council with Athena Davis, Marketing Director, North America
Segment Seven: Chef Nick Weber of Populaire at South Coast Plaza. Tribute Menu for “TINA -The Tina Turner Musical.”
Segment Eight: Chef & Co-Host Andrew Gruel with “Ask the Chef”

Show 508, January 21, 2023: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

Chef Rich Mead is the proprietor of Farmhouse at Rogers Gardens in Corona del Mar. Chef Rich’s seasonal menus feature ingredients sourced from local and sustainably focused farmers and purveyors. Sunday Brunch in the Gardens is a celebratory Orange County tradition. Farmhouse will also be a participating restaurant in the upcoming Orange County Restaurant Week set for March 5th to 11th. Chef Rich Mead takes a break from his regular Saturday morning sourcing trip at the Santa Monica Farmers Market to join us.

“The Santa Ynez Valley’s creative culinary culture has long been at the heart of its wine country experience, but its wide range of flavors are never more accessible than during Santa Ynez Valley Restaurant Weeks. Restaurant Weeks has returned for the 13th consecutive year, January 16 to 31, once again showcasing the region’s culinary bounty — and the perfect Santa Ynez Valley wines to pair with it — with a variety of special three-course prix fixe price menus.” Shelby Sim (President and CEO of Visit Santa Ynez Valley) is our guest highlighting Santa Ynez Valley Restaurant Weeks.

“The city-wide 2nd annual Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will take place January 22-29, 2023. Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will be an avenue to bring everyone to the table, from all walks of life, to showcase the city’s diverse Black food scene. Organized by Long Beach Food & Beverage, a California registered 501(c)3 non-profit, Long Black Restaurant Week is an eight day, city-wide event devoted to celebrating African, African American, and Caribbean fare in and around Long Beach. The event also seeks to highlight Black-owned food businesses as well as Black chefs and bartenders.” One of the participating restaurant pop-ups is Miller Butler known for their fresh pasta and wood-fire oven cooked pizzas. We’ll meet Co-Founder and pizzaiolo Ahmed Jamal Butler.

We’re delighted to welcome prominent food journalist Farley Elliott back to the show. Farley is the Senior Editor of the widely read Eater LA, covering the daily restaurant news beat in Los Angeles, Orange County and environs. He’s also the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks, a book about the long, winding saga of street food in Los Angeles. Find him all over the internet. We’ll discuss, among other delectable topics, the Michelin California Guide and its importance to recognized restaurants.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel the Founder of Big Parm (New Jersey-style pizza), Two Birds and the just soft-opened, full-service Calico Fish House (on Pacific Coast Highway in Huntington Beach) provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Locally caught California Halibut is now in season. Chef Andrew provides an over view. What’s a Ghost and/or a Virtual Kitchen? Chef Andrew explains the differences between Food Halls, Virtual Kitchens / Ghost Kitchens and the multiple hybrid variations utilizing components of each. They are here to stay in one form or another.

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

Show 508, January 21, 2023: Long Beach Black Restaurant Week with Pizzaiolo Ahmad Jamal Butler of Miller Butler Part One

Ahmed Jamal Butler of MillerButler

“The city-wide 2nd annual Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will take place January 22-29, 2023. Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will be an avenue to bring everyone to the table, from all walks of life, to showcase the city’s diverse Black food scene. Organized by Long Beach Food & Beverage, a California registered 501(c)3 non-profit, Long Black Restaurant Week is an eight day, city-wide event devoted to celebrating African, African American, and Caribbean fare in and around Long Beach. The event also seeks to highlight Black-owned food businesses as well as Black chefs and bartenders.”

One of the participating restaurants (with a pop-up) is MillerButler, “a grassroots mobile fresh pasta and woodfired pizza company based out of San Pedro. Their aim is to celebrate life within their community (and beyond) through a unique set of culinary experiences. They love cultivating moments of the good life- or “Dolce Vita,” by way of connecting over food.”

“Miller Butler makes a variety of high-quality handmade pastas, wood-fired pizzas, teach cooking and pasta making classes, provide catering and private chef services.”

“Miller Butler is founded in strong family roots and driven by passion. They are a husband and wife owned brand. The company name reflects the joining of their two families.”

““Miller,” is Chef Jillana Nadine Miller aka Chef J. She was practically born in the kitchen and has come up through the ranks as a “private chef to the stars”. Building the dream of MillerButler with her husband is the next step in her mission to branch out further and wider to cultivate joy and connection through food.”

““Butler,” is Ahmad Jamal Butler, a gifted Pizzaiolo and pasta maker. A talented home cook with 15 years of experience in the Hotel Hospitality industry, Ahmad has taken on the challenge of creating delicious canvas’ for Chef J’s flavorful creations. He has been refining MillerButler’s dough recipes over the last 2 years and receiving rave reviews.” Chef Ahmad is our guest with pizza peel in hand.

During Long Beach Black Restaurant Week MillerButler will be in- residence at Trademark Brewing on Tuesday, January 24th from 4:30 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. (or until they run out of dough.)

Show 508, January 21, 2023: Long Beach Black Restaurant Week with Pizzaiolo Ahmad Jamal Butler of Miller Butler Part Two

Ahmed Jamal Butler of MillerButler

“The city-wide 2nd annual Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will take place January 22-29, 2023. Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will be an avenue to bring everyone to the table, from all walks of life, to showcase the city’s diverse Black food scene. Organized by Long Beach Food & Beverage, a California registered 501(c)3 non-profit, Long Black Restaurant Week is an eight day, city-wide event devoted to celebrating African, African American, and Caribbean fare in and around Long Beach. The event also seeks to highlight Black-owned food businesses as well as Black chefs and bartenders.”

“One of the participating restaurants (with a pop-up) is MillerButler, a grassroots mobile fresh pasta and woodfired pizza company based out of San Pedro. Their aim is to celebrate life within their community (and beyond) through a unique set of culinary experiences. They love cultivating moments of the good life- or “Dolce Vita,” by way of connecting over food.”

“Miller Butler makes a variety of high-quality handmade pastas, wood-fired pizzas, teach cooking and pasta making classes, provide catering and private chef services.”

“Miller Butler is founded in strong family roots and driven by passion. They are a husband and wife owned brand. The company name reflects the joining of their two families.”

““Miller,” is Chef Jillana Nadine Miller aka Chef J. She was practically born in the kitchen and has come up through the ranks as a “private chef to the stars”. Building the dream of MillerButler with her husband is the next step in her mission to branch out further and wider to cultivate joy and connection through food.”

““Butler,” is Ahmad Jamal Butler, a gifted Pizzaiolo and pasta maker. A talented home cook with 15 years of experience in the Hotel Hospitality industry, Ahmad has taken on the challenge of creating delicious canvas’ for Chef J’s flavorful creations. He has been refining MillerButler’s dough recipes over the last 2 years and receiving rave reviews.” Chef Ahmad is our guest with pizza peel in hand.

Chef Ahmad continues as our guest with pizza peel in hand.

During Long Beach Black Restaurant Week MillerButler will be in-residence at Trademark Brewing on Tuesday, January 24th from 4:30 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. or until the dough runs out.

January 21: Farmhouse at Rogers Gardens, Santa Ynez Valley Restaurant Weeks, MillerButler, Farley Elliott of Eater LA

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef / Proprietor Rich Mead, Farmhouse at Roger’s Gardens
Segment Three: Santa Ynez Valley Restaurant Weeks with Shelby Sim, President / CEO of Visit the Santa Ynez Valley
Segment Four: Long Beach Black Restaurant Week with Pizzaiolo Ahmad Jamal Butler of Miller Butler Part One
Segment Five: Long Beach Black Restaurant Week with Pizzaiolo Ahmad Jamal Butler of Miller Butler Part Two
Segment Six: Farley Elliott, Senior Editor, Eater Los Angeles Part One
Segment Seven: Farley Elliott, Senior Editor, Eater Los Angeles Part Two
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Co-Host, with “Ask the Chef”

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

Chef Rich Mead is the proprietor of Farmhouse at Rogers Gardens in Corona del Mar. Chef Rich’s seasonal menus feature ingredients sourced from local and sustainably focused farmers and purveyors. Sunday Brunch in the Gardens is a celebratory Orange County tradition. Farmhouse will also be a participating restaurant in the upcoming Orange County Restaurant Week set for March 5th to 11th. Chef Rich Mead takes a break from his regular Saturday morning sourcing trip at the Santa Monica Farmers Market to join us.

“The Santa Ynez Valley’s creative culinary culture has long been at the heart of its wine country experience, but its wide range of flavors are never more accessible than during Santa Ynez Valley Restaurant Weeks. Restaurant Weeks has returned for the 13th consecutive year, January 16-31, once again showcasing the region’s culinary bounty — and the perfect Santa Ynez Valley wines to pair with it — with a variety of special three-course prix fixe price menus.” Shelby Sim (President and CEO of Visit Santa Ynez Valley) is our guest highlighting Santa Ynez Valley Restaurant Weeks.

“The city-wide 2nd annual Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will take place January 22-29, 2023. Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will be an avenue to bring everyone to the table, from all walks of life, to showcase the city’s diverse Black food scene. Organized by Long Beach Food & Beverage, a California registered 501(c)3 non-profit, Long Black Restaurant Week is an eight day, city-wide event devoted to celebrating African, African American, and Caribbean fare in and around Long Beach. The event also seeks to highlight Black-owned food businesses as well as Black chefs and bartenders.” One of the participating restaurant pop-ups is MillerButler known for their fresh pasta and wood-fire oven cooked pizzas. We’ll meet Co-Founder and pizzaiolo Ahmed Jamal Butler.

We’re delighted to welcome food journalist Farley Elliott back to the show. Farley is the Senior Editor of the widely read Eater LA, covering the daily restaurant news beat in Los Angeles, Orange County and environs. He’s also the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks, a book about the long, winding saga of street food in Los Angeles. Find him all over the internet at @overoverunder. We’ll discuss, among other delectable topics, the Michelin California Guide and its importance to recognized restaurants.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel the Founder of Big Parm (New Jersey-style pizza), Two Birds and the soon to launch, full-service Calico Fish House (in Huntington Beach) provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. What’s a Ghost and/or a Virtual Kitchen? Chef Andrew explains the differences between Food Halls, Virtual Kitchens / Ghost Kitchens and the multiple hybrid variations utilizing components of each. They are here to stay.

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

Rich Mead of Farmhouse at Rogers Gardens

Chef Rich Mead is the proprietor of Farmhouse at Rogers Gardens in Corona del Mar. Chef Rich’s seasonal menus feature ingredients sourced from local and sustainably focused farmers and purveyors. Sunday Brunch in the Garden is a now a celebratory Orange County tradition. Chef Rich Mead takes a break from his regular Saturday morning sourcing trip at the Santa Monica Farmers Market to join us.

“During his nearly four decades of culinary expertise, Chef Rich Mead has cultivated relationships with the highest regarded local sustainable farms, allowing him to create the freshest menus using locally sourced, seasonal ingredients and specially grown vegetables. In 2016, after years of planning, Chef Mead unveiled a unique and sustainable field-to-fork dining experience at Farmhouse, located within Roger’s Gardens. Nestled on over 6 acres in the garden-like setting, Farmhouse features exclusive wines, craft beers, signature cocktails, artisan refreshments and a healthy based seasonal cuisine.”

Farmhouse will also be a participating restaurant in the upcoming Orange County Restaurant Week set for March 5th to 11th.

Shelby Sim of the Santa Ynez Valley

“The Santa Ynez Valley’s creative culinary culture has long been at the heart of its wine country experience, but its wide range of flavors are never more accessible than during Santa Ynez Valley Restaurant Weeks.”

Restaurant Weeks has returned for the 13th consecutive year, January 16-31, once again showcasing the region’s culinary bounty — and the perfect Santa Ynez Valley wines to pair with it — with a variety of special three-course prix fixe price menus.”

“The restaurants that participate in Santa Ynez Valley’s annual festival of flavor feature curated, chef-driven, three-course menus at price points of $30, $40, or $50, plus tax and gratuity. Many of the region’s wineries and tasting rooms also participate at various levels, offering two-for-one tastings, special tasting flights, and discounts on bottle purchases.”

“Restaurant Weeks brings foodies together each year for an affordable, immersive culinary experience,” said Shelby Sim, President/CEO of Visit the Santa Ynez Valley. “The region’s wines are typically what come to mind first when thinking about the Santa Ynez Valley. But Restaurant Weeks showcases our gifted local chefs and their diverse and inspired culinary creations in a way that is accessible to most everyone.”

For the latest updates on Santa Ynez Valley Restaurant Weeks, including menus and participating restaurants, wineries, and tasting rooms, visit their Restaurant Weeks website.

Shelby Sim is our guest highlighting Santa Ynez Valley Restaurant Weeks.

Ahmed Jamal Butler of MillerButler

“The city-wide 2nd annual Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will take place January 22-29, 2023. Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will be an avenue to bring everyone to the table, from all walks of life, to showcase the city’s diverse Black food scene. Organized by Long Beach Food & Beverage, a California registered 501(c)3 non-profit, Long Black Restaurant Week is an eight day, city-wide event devoted to celebrating African, African American, and Caribbean fare in and around Long Beach. The event also seeks to highlight Black-owned food businesses as well as Black chefs and bartenders.”

One of the participating restaurants (with a pop-up) is MillerButler, “a grassroots mobile fresh pasta and woodfired pizza company based out of San Pedro. Their aim is to celebrate life within their community (and beyond) through a unique set of culinary experiences. They love cultivating moments of the good life- or “Dolce Vita,” by way of connecting over food.”

“Miller Butler makes a variety of high-quality handmade pastas, wood-fired pizzas, teach cooking and pasta making classes, provide catering and private chef services.”

“Miller Butler is founded in strong family roots and driven by passion. They are a husband and wife owned brand. The company name reflects the joining of their two families.”

““Miller,” is Chef Jillana Nadine Miller aka Chef J. She was practically born in the kitchen and has come up through the ranks as a “private chef to the stars”. Building the dream of MillerButler with her husband is the next step in her mission to branch out further and wider to cultivate joy and connection through food.”

““Butler,” is Ahmad Jamal Butler, a gifted Pizzaiolo and pasta maker. A talented home cook with 15 years of experience in the Hotel Hospitality industry, Ahmad has taken on the challenge of creating delicious canvas’ for Chef J’s flavorful creations. He has been refining MillerButler’s dough recipes over the last 2 years and receiving rave reviews.” Chef Ahmad is our guest with pizza peel in hand.

During Long Beach Black Restaurant Week MillerButler will be in- residence at Trademark Brewing on Tuesday, January 24th from 4:30 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. (or until they run out of dough.)

Farley Elliott at the KLAA Studios

We’re delighted to welcome food journalist Farley Elliott back to the show. Farley is the Senior Editor of the widely read Eater LA, covering the daily restaurant news beat in Los Angeles, Orange County and environs. He’s also the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks, a book about the long, winding saga of street food in Los Angeles. Find him all over the internet.

The Michelin Guide California was released last December. Chefs consider Michelin recognition to be of great importance. The Guide (now only online) conveys its restaurant awards through a series of recognitions. There are “Stars” awarded for restaurant of distinction in addition to the Bib Gourmands recognizing skillful cooking at an affordable price. Farley has covered the Michelins for years (Michelin is apparently a bit media shy when it comes to interviews) and we’ll discuss all the levels of possible awards and where the funding for the Guides comes from.

We’ll also discuss with Farley his most eagerly anticipated restaurant openings on the horizon for 2023.

Chef Andrew Gruel of Big Parm and the Calico Fish House

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel the Founder of Big Parm (New Jersey-style pizza), Two Birds and the soon to launch, full-service Calico Fish House (in Huntington Beach) provides another timely and informative Ask the Chef segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries.

What’s a Ghost and/or a Virtual Kitchen? Chef Andrew explains the differences between Food Halls, Virtual Kitchens / Ghost Kitchens and the multiple hybrid variations appearing utilizing components of each.

Chef Andrew and Lauren Gruel have a new fast casual concept, Burger 101, coming soon to the 2-level, Kitchen United complex on the 3rd St. Promenade in Santa Monica. It’s Chef Andrew’s version of a value-priced, honest burger (and loaded fries) using quality ingredients including a premium burger patty sourced from West Coast Prime Meats. He’ll also launch a casual Mexican concept there, Lolo’s Tacos, specializing in clean and simple tacos, burritos and standout specialty sauces.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef / Proprietor Rich Mead, Farmhouse at Roger’s Gardens
Segment Three: Santa Ynez Valley Restaurant Weeks with Shelby Sim, President / CEO of Visit the Santa Ynez Valley
Segment Four: Long Beach Black Restaurant Week with Pizzaiolo Ahmad Jamal Butler of Miller Butler Part One
Segment Five: Long Beach Black Restaurant Week with Pizzaiolo Ahmad Jamal Butler of Miller Butler Part Two
Segment Six: Farley Elliott, Senior Editor, Eater Los Angeles Part One
Segment Seven: Farley Elliott, Senior Editor, Eater Los Angeles Part Two
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Co-Host, with “Ask the Chef”

Show 507, January 14, 2023: Toran Grays, Proprietor, Extraordinary Banana Pudding, Participant, Long Beach Black Restaurant Week

Toran Grays of Extraordinary Banana Pudding

“The city-wide 2nd annual Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will take place January 22-29, 2023. Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will be an avenue to bring everyone to the table, from all walks of life, to showcase the city’s diverse Black food scene. Organized by Long Beach Food & Beverage, a California registered 501(c)3 non-profit, Long Black Restaurant Week is an eight day, city-wide event devoted to celebrating African, African American, and Caribbean fare in and around Long Beach. The event also seeks to highlight Black-owned food businesses as well as Black chefs and bartenders.”

One of the participating gourmet specialty food entities in Long Beach Black Restaurant Week is Extraordinary Banana Pudding founded by Toran Grays in La Mesa In 2020. The original recipe was created by Toran’s great-grandmother and passed down by the women in his Family. In October of 2021 Toran opened his 2nd Extraordinary Banana Pudding retail store on Long Beach Blvd. We’ll meet him.

Extraordinary Banana Pudding serves some 40 varieties of Banana Pudding along with Pudding Tacos, Pudding-Filled Cupcakes and even a Pudding Sandwich. Visitors to the store can sample any of the 40 varieties of Extraordinary Banana Pudding.

Special Offer: Guests who visit the Long Beach Extraordinary Banana Pudding during Long Beach Black Restaurant Week receive $2 off their order when they mention LB Black Restaurant Week. Enjoy.

Show 506, January 7, 2023: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

“In just a short time, Donald Contursi’s Lip Smacking Foodie Tours has grown into the premier culinary walking tour producer in Las Vegas, garnering not only loyal fans but outstanding accolades. Its variety of tours offer guests personalized service and VIP access to the best tables in the house at the city’s most acclaimed restaurants – all without the hassle of waiting in lines or making reservations.” Vegas insider Donald Contursi takes a break from his acclaimed VIP tours and joins us.

The intimate, 18-seat Trust Kitchen in downtown Santa Ana is where Chef Justin Werner hosts ambitious themed tasting events, generally at least 12 food offerings, each paired by sommelier Jason Scarborough. Seating is limited and reservations are required. It’s an extraordinary Chef’s Table experience truly like no other. Upcoming Trust Events are listed as a calendar on their website. There are also Trust Lite evenings as well as special guest chefs and ingredient themed evenings. Chef Justin takes a break from his busy Trust Dinner Party kitchen to join us.

“The 10th season of travel journalist Darley Newman’s TRAVELS WITH DARLEY brings viewers insights into the deeper meaning of travel through diverse culture, cuisine, heritage, and history as told by the locals and Darley drawing on over a decade and a half of global travels. Launching starting in January 2023 on PBS stations with eight (8) all-new 30-minute episodes, Darley once again steps out of her comfort zone to share travels that help rejuvenate and restore balance between mind, body and soul. With the opening of international borders after over two years of pandemic isolation, Darley anticipated people would want to visit places that would serve to quench their pent-up quest for travel and better their personal well-being. Filmed in international and U.S. locations, including Istanbul and throughout Türkiye, Quebec, Santa Fe, Bordeaux and Wilmington, Delaware, Darley enlists local experts for eight half hour episodes.” The well-traveled Darley Newman is out guest.

“The city-wide 2nd annual Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will take place January 22-29, 2023. Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will be an avenue to bring everyone to the table, from all walks of life, to showcase the city’s diverse Black food scene. Organized by Long Beach Food & Beverage, a California registered 501(c)3 non-profit, Long Black Restaurant Week is an eight day, city-wide event devoted to celebrating African, African American, and Caribbean fare in and around Long Beach. The event also seeks to highlight Black-owned food businesses as well as Black chefs and bartenders.” One of the participating restaurants in Long Beach Black Restaurant Week is Sal’s Gumbo Shack (established in 2012) with locations in North Long Beach and Bixby Knolls serving a genuine taste of The Big Easy. Specialties include Gumbo, Jambalaya, Crab & Shrimp Boils, Catfish Po’Boys and Peach Cobbler. Proprietress Sally Bevans is a self-taught home cook now creating soulful Creole cuisine and she joins us.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel the Founder of Big Parm (New Jersey-style pizza), Two Birds and the soon to launch, full-service Calico Fish House (in Huntington Beach) provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew reports on the status and implementation of AB 257 – the Fast Food Accountability and Standards Recovery Act (Fast Recovery Act for short.) It requires a bit of explanation.

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

January 7: Lip Smacking Foodie Tours, Trust Kitchen, Darley Newman, Sal’s Gumbo Shack

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Donald Contursi, Founder, Lip Smacking Foodie Tours and Finger Licking Foodie Tours, Las Vegas Part One
Segment Three: Donald Contursi, Founder, Lip Smacking Foodie Tours and Finger Licking Foodie Tours, Las Vegas Part Two
Segment Four: Executive Chef Justin Werner, Trust Kitchen DTSA and Trust Dinner Party, Santa Ana
Segment Five: Darley Newman, Travel Journalist – 10th Season of “Travels with Darley” Part One
Segment Six: Darley Newman, Travel Journalist – 10th Season of “Travels with Darley” Part Two
Segment Seven: Long Beach Black Restaurant Week Preview with Restaurateur Sally Bevans of Sal’s Gumbo Shack
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Co-Host, with “Ask the Chef”

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

“In just a short time, Donald Contursi’s Lip Smacking Foodie Tours has grown into the premier culinary walking tour producer in Las Vegas, garnering not only loyal fans but outstanding accolades. Its variety of tours offer guests personalized service and VIP access to the best tables in the house at the city’s most acclaimed restaurants – all without the hassle of waiting in lines or making reservations.” Vegas insider Donald Contursi takes a break from his acclaimed VIP tours and joins us.

The intimate, 18-seat Trust Kitchen in downtown Santa Ana is where Chef Justin Werner hosts ambitious themed tasting events, generally at least 12 food offerings, each paired by sommelier Jason Scarborough. Seating is limited and reservations are required. It’s an extraordinary Chef’s Table experience truly like no other. Upcoming Trust Events are listed as a calendar at trustdtsa.com. There are also Trust Lite evenings as well as special guest chefs and ingredient themed evenings. Chef Justin takes a break from his busy Trust Dinner Party kitchen to join us.

“The 10th season of travel journalist Darley Newman’s TRAVELS WITH DARLEY brings viewers insights into the deeper meaning of travel through diverse culture, cuisine, heritage, and history as told by the locals and Darley drawing on over a decade and a half of global travels. Launching starting in January 2023 on PBS stations with eight (8) all-new 30-minute episodes, Darley once again steps out of her comfort zone to share travels that help rejuvenate and restore balance between mind, body and soul. With the opening of international borders after over two years of pandemic isolation, Darley anticipated people would want to visit places that would serve to quench their pent-up quest for travel and better their personal well-being. Filmed in international and U.S. locations, including Istanbul and throughout Türkiye, Quebec, Santa Fe, Bordeaux and Wilmington, Delaware, Darley enlists local experts for eight half hour episodes.” The well-traveled Darley Newman is out guest.

“The city-wide 2nd annual Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will take place January 22-29, 2023. Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will be an avenue to bring everyone to the table, from all walks of life, to showcase the city’s diverse Black food scene. Organized by Long Beach Food & Beverage, a California registered 501(c)3 non-profit, Long Black Restaurant Week is an eight day, city-wide event devoted to celebrating African, African American, and Caribbean fare in and around Long Beach. The event also seeks to highlight Black-owned food businesses as well as Black chefs and bartenders.” One of the participating restaurants in Long Beach Black Restaurant Week is Sal’s Gumbo Shack (established in 2012) with locations in North Long Beach and Bixby Knolls serving a genuine taste of The Big Easy. Specialties include Gumbo, Jambalaya, Crab & Shrimp Boils, Catfish Po’Boys and Peach Cobbler. Proprietress Sally Bevans is a self-taught home cook creating soulful Creole cuisine and she joins us.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel the Founder of Big Parm (New Jersey-style pizza), Two Birds and the soon to launch, full-service Calico Fish House (in Huntington Beach) provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew reports on the status and implementation of AB 257 – the Fast Food Accountability and Standards Recovery Act (Fast Recovery Act for short) and also explains the differences between Food Halls, Virtual Kitchens / Ghost Kitchens and the hybrid variations utilizing components of each.

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

Donald Contursi of Lipsmacking Foodie Tours

“In just a short time, Donald Contursi’s Lip Smacking Foodie Tours has grown into the premier culinary walking tour operator in Las Vegas, garnering not only loyal fans but outstanding accolades. Its variety of tours offer guests personalized service and VIP access to the best tables in the house at the city’s most acclaimed restaurants – all without the hassle of waiting in lines or making reservations.”

“Each tour is led by an expert guide who entertains guests with insider knowledge about the sights along the way. At each of four restaurant stops on The Strip or downtown, guests indulge in signature dishes, as well as receive a warm welcome from the chefs. Guests can sit beside different patrons at every stop, gaining new friends and networking connections. The tours are perfect for everyone from locals to tourists to business travelers, including corporate groups of up to 250.”

“The sister entity, Finger Licking Foodie Tours, was founded by Donald Contursi, founder and president of the wildly successful award-winning Lip Smacking Foodie Tours. Finger Licking Foodie Tours offers lighthearted, self-guided casual culinary walking tours on the Strip and through some of Vegas’ most distinctive neighborhoods, with stops at three top restaurants to enjoy a parade of signature dishes at each, all with VIP service. They are self-guided with an innovative e-guide included. Each tour introduces guests to some of the city’s most celebrated and irresistible eateries.”  Options for the self-guided foodie tours include Downtown, Arts District, Chinatown, Green Valley Resort, Tivoli Village, Virgin Hotel, Aria Resort & Casino and Park MGM.

Last year Don inaugurated (via shuttle transportation) a series of Specially Focused Food Tours concentrating on a popular menu item and designed for Locals. Sold out specialty tours so far include Pizza and BBQ. More adventures are on the horizon…Each guest also gets the gift of a highlight video of the experience.

Donald Contursi takes a break from hosting his VIP tours and joins us.

Justin Werner of Trust Kitchen

“The intimate, 18-seat Trust Kitchen in downtown Santa Ana is where Chef Justin Werner hosts themed tasting events, generally at least 12 food offerings, each paired by sommelier Jason Scarborough. Seating is limited and reservations are required.” It’s a Chef’s Table experience truly like no other. Upcoming Trust Events are listed as a calendar on their website. There are also Trust Lite evenings as well as special guest chefs and ingredient themed evenings. “Just come in, sit down and let us take you on an adventure”

Yelp has named Trust one of its Top 100 US Restaurants for 2023.

“As part of his visiting Guest Chef series Justin has invited long- time friend and former co-chef from Colicchio and Sons, Gabriel Pascuzzi on Saturday, January 14th. Gabriel owns three successful restaurants in Portland Oregon. The two chefs reconnected after Gabriel’s appearance on Top Chef Season 18 to host a dinner together in Portland. It’s a mashup of New York, Portland, and Orange County flavors. $275 per person, food, wine pairings, tax, and gratuity included.” The 6 p.m. seating has a few seats available. 8:30 p.m. is sold out.

“Chef Justin is New York raised and cut his culinary chops in some of Manhattan’s top-tier restaurants. He spent half a decade working at Craft for Tom Colicchio, followed by a couple of years at Thomas Keller’s Per Se before moving on to Corton where he maintained two Michelin stars as a Sous Chef for Paul Liebrandt. After winning an episode of the hit Food Network show Chopped, he used his winnings to travel to Copenhagen to intern at Noma while it was rated as the best restaurant in the world. Upon moving back to America, he came to Orange County to work alongside Chef Jason Quinn in Playground 2.0. When Chef Jason decided it was time for him to develop a new project, he asked Justin to come back and take the helm at Playground 2.0, which was renamed the Trust Kitchen.”

Chef Justin takes a break from his preparations in the Trust Dinner Party kitchen to join us.

Darley Newman of Travels with Darley

“The 10th season of travel journalist Darley Newman’s TRAVELS WITH DARLEY brings viewers insights into the deeper meaning of travel through diverse culture, cuisine, heritage, and history as told by the locals and Darley drawing on over a decade and a half of global travels. Launching starting in January 2023 on PBS stations with eight (8) all-new 30-minute episodes, Darley once again steps out of her comfort zone to share travels that help rejuvenate and restore balance between mind, body and soul.”

“With the opening of international borders after over two years of pandemic isolation, Darley anticipated people would want to visit places that would serve to quench their pent-up quest for travel and better their personal well-being. Filmed in international and U.S. locations, including Istanbul and throughout Türkiye, Quebec, Santa Fe, Bordeaux and Wilmington, Delaware, Darley enlists local experts for eight half hour episodes.”

“I’ve always looked to share lesser-known stories. As my crew and I reflect on filming ten seasons, I’m particularly excited about our episodes featuring ‘human interest journeys that will help those who watch reflect on the deeper meaning of travel and to value how stepping out of your comfort zone and taking the time to learn can enrich our lives and inspire us to be more than… beyond the bragging rights moments,” said Darley Newman, the series host and creator. “By traveling the world and getting to know new people and places, we can become better global citizens and more inspired people.”

Darley Newman is our well-traveled guest.

Sally Bevans of Sals Gumbo Shack

“The city-wide 2nd annual Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will take place January 22-29, 2023. Long Beach Black Restaurant Week will be an avenue to bring everyone to the table, from all walks of life, to showcase the city’s diverse Black food scene.

Organized by Long Beach Food & Beverage, a California registered 501(c)3 non-profit, Long Black Restaurant Week is an eight day, city-wide event devoted to celebrating African, African American, and Caribbean fare in and around Long Beach. The event also seeks to highlight Black-owned food businesses as well as Black chefs and bartenders.

“Long Beach Black Restaurant Week is more than an eight-day event featuring dozens of restaurants and food businesses,” stated Terri Henry, co-organizer of the event and Executive Director of Long Beach Food & Beverage. “Since launching the non-profit in 2019, we’ve been committed to supporting all of Long Beach’s valued restaurants and will support the event once again with a comprehensive advertising, marketing and PR campaign designed to put ‘butts in seats’ during Long Beach Black Restaurant Week.”

One of the participating restaurants in Long Beach Black Restaurant Week is Sal’s Gumbo Shack (established in 2012) with locations in North Long Beach and Bixby Knolls serving a genuine taste of The Big Easy. Specialties include Gumbo, Jambalaya, Crab & Shrimp Boils, Catfish Po’Boys and Peach Cobbler. Proprietress Sally Bevans is a self-taught home cook creating soulful Creole cuisine.

We’ll meet Sally Bevans.

Chef Andrew Gruel of Big Parm and the Calico Fish House

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel the Founder of Big Parm (New Jersey-style pizza), Two Birds and the soon to launch, full-service Calico Fish House (in Huntington Beach) provides another timely and informative Ask the Chef segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries.

Chef Andrew reports on the status and implementation of AB 257 – the Fast Food Accountability and Standards Recovery Act (Fast Recovery Act for short) and also explains the differences between the now trendy Food Halls, Virtual Kitchens / Ghost Kitchens and the hybrid variations utilizing components of each. It’s an area of future growth.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Donald Contursi, Founder, Lip Smacking Foodie Tours and Finger Licking Foodie Tours, Las Vegas Part One
Segment Three: Donald Contursi, Founder, Lip Smacking Foodie Tours and Finger Licking Foodie Tours, Las Vegas Part Two
Segment Four: Executive Chef Justin Werner, Trust Kitchen DTSA and Trust Dinner Party, Santa Ana
Segment Five: Darley Newman, Travel Journalist – 10th Season of “Travels with Darley” Part One
Segment Six: Darley Newman, Travel Journalist – 10th Season of “Travels with Darley” Part Two
Segment Seven: Long Beach Black Restaurant Week Preview with Restaurateur Sally Bevans of Sal’s Gumbo Shack
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Co-Host, with “Ask the Chef”