Show 385, August 8, 2020: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

Late last month Corona del Mar’s historic Five Crowns and SideDoor (part of the Lawry’s family of fine-dining restaurants) reopened the spacious backyard of the expansive property for open-air dining in the charming setting reminiscent of an English country garden. Set with thoughtfully spaced tables and accented by fire pits, the backyard of the beloved, dining establishment offers the same gracious hospitality for which the restaurants are known. Guests sip on specialty cocktails under the twinkling lights and experience signature dishes from both Five Crowns and SideDoor offered on a single menu available for backyard dining and to-go. Tracy Nelsen Five Crowns’ and SideDoor’s Restaurant Manager, Cheesemonger, Sommelier and Cicerone joins us with a tempting overview of what’s now on the menu.

Angelina’s Pizzeria Napoletana is a fine-casual Italian restaurant located in Irvine in the Los Olivos Marketplace. At Angelina’s, guests dine on authentic Italian food made with only the finest ingredients imported from Italy and fresh produce from local farms. From one-of-a-kind artwork to hand-picked fixtures, the modern, upscale interior redefines the concept of a pizzeria.

Their specialty is authentic Neapolitan-style pizza (pizza Napoletana). Each pizza is made using traditional techniques and cooked in their twin, high-end Ferrara wood-burning pizza ovens, making Angelina’s one of the few restaurants in the United States to hold a VPN Certification (Vera Pizza Napoletana). Angelina’s Managing Partner, Filippo Fusco, is our guest, pizza peel at the ready.

3rd generation restaurateur Ron Salisbury has been running successful, high-volume restaurants for sixty-six years, a period of time in which most people are born and retire. He grew up working after school as a dish sorter, busser, and steam table expediter in his parents’ Los Angeles restaurant, El Cholo. Salisbury is not one for utilizing voluminous operating manuals but over the years has acquired a bushel of practical morsels of wisdom for operating a successful restaurant. Starting with “Our Seven Pillars” Ron has collected all these short vignettes of incredibly useful advice into the very easy-to-read volume, What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A. (That’s the Culinary Institute of America by-the-way.) It’s truly an essential and valuable read for all aspiring restaurateurs. Ron Salisbury is with us to generously share a sampling of the practical wisdom from What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A.

Winemakers and life partners Mireia Tena and Tara Gomez are the creative forces at Camins 2 Deams in Lompoc, their dream boutique winery. The grapes are sourced exclusively from select vineyards in the Santa Rita Hills, a unique appellation in Santa Barbara County. Their philosophy is to make hand-crafted, terroir-driven wines that are fermented with natural yeast and use minimal intervention in the winery. Camins 2 Dreams believes wine is made in the vineyard and desires to showcase the typicity of each site where the grapes originate.

Current releases include Gruner Veltliner, Rose of Syrah, and three vineyard specific Syrahs. Grenache and Graciano are in their future. Winemakers Tara and Mireia join us to pull the cork on all that is Camins 2 Dreams.

DTLA Pizza is a new Takeout and Delivery concept from Chef Michael Hung of Faith & Flower. The goal for Chef Michael’s new DTLA Pizza concept is to serve meat lovers and vegans alike, quality and comfort food driven dishes prepared with house-made sourdough crusts, toppings such as Impossible beef, locally grown produce, along with Burgers that are made with American Kobe beef and burst with flavor.” “As the world is today, I find myself craving comfort foods. The menu for DTLA Pizza reflects my time growing up in New Jersey eating at such institutions such as Star Tavern in Orange, NJ.  These dishes and flavors remind me of home and the joyful times I spent with my friends and family as a kid.” Chef Michael Hung joins us to artfully toss & stretch the from-scratch pizza dough. 

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is regularly updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is slowly, with multiple hiccups, starting to come back but with a lot of new rules that restrict guest counts. Alternately take-out/delivery when you can surely helps… National Oyster Day was August 5th. We started the conversation last week about fully appreciating oysters. Chef Andrew is our resident authority on these bivalve mollusks enjoyed since ancient times. We’ll resume with tips about cooking with oysters. Oyster stew anyone ?

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness (with proper Social Distancing) on this week’s not-to-miss show!

Play

Show 385, August 8, 2020: Restaurateur Ron Salisbury (El Cholo) – What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A. Part One

Ron Salisbury of El Cholo3rd generation restaurateur Ron Salisbury has been running successful, high-volume restaurants for sixty-six years, a period of time in which most people are born and retire. He grew up working after school as a dish sorter, busser, and steam table expediter in his parents’ Los Angeles restaurant, El Cholo.

In the decades since Ron has launched restaurants throughout Southern California. In addition to the El Cholo’s newer dining ventures are The Cannery and Louie’s By the Bay, both located in Newport Beach.

Salisbury is not one for voluminous operating manuals but over the years he acquired a bushel of practical morsels of wisdom for operating a successful restaurant. Starting with “Our Seven Pillars” Ron has collected all these short vignettes of incredibly useful advice into the very easy-to-read volume, What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A. (That’s the Culinary Institute of America.) It’s truly an essential read for all aspiring restaurateurs.

Ron Salisbury is with us to generously share a sampling of the practical wisdom from What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A.

Play

Show 385, August 8, 2020: Restaurateur Ron Salisbury (El Cholo) – What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A. Part Two

Ron Salisbury of El Cholo3rd generation restaurateur Ron Salisbury has been running successful, high-volume restaurants for sixty-six years, a period of time in which most people are born and retire. He grew up working after school as a dish sorter, busser, and steam table expediter in his parents’ Los Angeles restaurant, El Cholo.

In the decades since Ron has launched restaurants throughout Southern California. In addition to the El Cholo’s newer ventures are The Cannery and Louie’s By the Bay, both located in Newport Beach.

Salisbury is not one for voluminous operating manuals but over the years he acquired a bushel of practical morsels of wisdom for operating a successful restaurant. Starting with “Our Seven Pillars” Ron has collected all these short vignettes of incredibly useful advice into the very easy-to-read volume, What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A. (That’s the Culinary Institute of America.) It’s truly an essential read for all aspiring restaurateurs.

Ron Salisbury is the recipient of the Elizabeth Burns Lifetime Achievement Award from the Los Angeles Chapter of the California Restaurant Association. He has lectured at The Collins College of Hospitality Management at California State Polytechnic University Pomona.

Ron Salisbury continues with us generously sharing a sampling of the practical wisdom from What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A.

Play

August 8: Five Crowns & SideDoor, Angelina’s Pizzeria Napoletana, Ron Salisbury, Camins 2 Dreams, DTLA Pizza

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Restaurant Manager Tracy Nelsen, Five Crowns and SideDoor, Corona del Mar
Segment Three: Filippo Fusco, Managing Partner, Angelina’s Pizzeria Napoletana, Irvine
Segment Four: Restaurateur Ron Salisbury (El Cholo) – What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A. Part One
Segment Five: Restaurateur Ron Salisbury (El Cholo) – What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A. Part Two
Segment Six: Winemakers Tara Gomez and Mireia Taribo, Camins 2 Dreams Winery, Lompoc
Segment Seven: Chef Michael Hung, DTLA Pizza, Los Angeles
Segment Eight: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”

Late last month Corona del Mar’s historic Five Crowns and SideDoor (part of the Lawry’s family of fine-dining restaurants) reopened the spacious backyard of the property for open-air dining in the charming setting reminiscent of an English country garden. Set with thoughtfully spaced tables and accented by fire pits, the backyard of the beloved, dining establishment offers the same gracious hospitality for which the restaurants are known. Guests sip on specialty cocktails under the twinkling lights and experience signature dishes from both Five Crowns and SideDoor offered on a single menu available for backyard dining and to-go. Tracy Nelsen Five Crowns’ and SideDoor’s Restaurant Manager, Cheesemonger, Sommelier and Cicerone joins us with a tempting overview of what’s now on the menu.

Angelina’s Pizzeria Napoletana is a fine-casual Italian restaurant located in Irvine in the Los Olivos Marketplace. At Angelina’s, guests dine on authentic Italian food made with only the finest ingredients imported from Italy and fresh produce from local farms. From one-of-a-kind artwork to hand-picked fixtures, the modern, upscale interior redefines the concept of a pizzeria.

Their specialty is authentic Neapolitan-style pizza (pizza Napoletana). Each pizza is made using traditional techniques and cooked in their twin Ferrara wood-burning pizza ovens, making Angelina’s one of the few restaurants in the United States to hold a VPN Certification (Vera Pizza Napoletana). Angelina’s Managing Partner, Filippo Fusco, is our guest, pizza peel at the ready.

Restaurateur Ron Salisbury has been running successful, high-volume restaurants for sixty-six years, a period of time in which most people are born and retire. He grew up working after school as a dish sorter, busser, and steam table expediter in his parents’ Los Angeles restaurant, El Cholo. Salisbury is not one for utilizing voluminous operating manuals but over the years has acquired a bushel of practical morsels of wisdom for operating a successful restaurant. Starting with “Our Seven Pillars” Ron has collected all these short vignettes of incredibly useful advice into the very easy-to-read volume, What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A. (That’s the Culinary Institute of America.) It’s truly an essential read for all aspiring restaurateurs. Ron Salisbury is with us to generously share a sampling of the practical wisdom from What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A.

Winemakers and life partners Mireia Taribo Tena and Tara Gomez are the creative forces at Camins 2 Deams in Lompoc, their dream boutique winery. The grapes are sourced exclusively from select vineyards in the Santa Rita Hills, a unique appellation in Santa Barbara County. Their philosophy is to make hand-crafted, terroir-driven wines that are fermented with natural yeast and use minimal intervention in the winery. Camins 2 Dreams believes wine is made in the vineyard and desires to showcase the typicity of each site where the grapes originate.

Current releases include Gruner Veltliner, Rose of Syrah, and three vineyard specific Syrahs. Winemakers Mireia and Tara join us to pull the cork on all that is Camins 2 Dreams.

“DTLA Pizza is a new Takeout and Delivery concept from Chef Michael Hung of Faith & Flower. The goal for Chef Michael’s new DTLA Pizza concept is to serve meat lovers and vegans alike, quality and comfort food driven dishes prepared with house-made sourdough crusts, toppings such as Impossible beef, locally grown produce, along with Burgers that are made with American Kobe beef and burst with flavor.” “As the world is today, I find myself craving comfort foods. The menu for DTLA Pizza reflects my time growing up in New Jersey eating at such institutions such as Star Tavern in Orange, NJ. These dishes and flavors remind me of home and the joyful times I spent with my friends and family as a kid.” Chef Michael Hung joins us to artfully toss & stretch the pizza dough.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is regularly updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is slowly, with multiple hiccups, starting to come back but with a lot of new rules that restrict guest counts. Alternately Take-Out / Delivery when you can surely helps… National Oyster Day was August 5th. We started the conversation last week about fully appreciating oysters. Chef Andrew is our resident authority on these bivalve mollusks enjoyed since ancient times. We’ll resume with tips about cooking with oysters. Oyster stew anyone?

Tracy Nelsen of Five CrownsLate last month Corona del Mar’s historic Five Crowns and SideDoor (part of the Lawry’s family of fine-dining restaurants) reopened the spacious backyard for open-air dining in the charming setting reminiscent of an English country garden.

Set with thoughtfully spaced tables and accented by fire pits, the backyard of the beloved, dining establishment offers the same gracious hospitality for which the restaurants are known. Guests sip on specialty cocktails under the twinkling lights and experience signature dishes from both Five Crowns and SideDoor offered on a single menu available for backyard dining and to-go.

In addition to Five Crowns specialties including Jumbo Shrimp Cocktail and Colorado Lamb Chops four cuts of the classic Lawry’s Prime Ribs of Beef are available. SideDoor featured items available range from the Artisanal Cheese Plate to Prime Rib Chili.

Tracy Nelsen Five Crowns’ and SideDoor’s Restaurant Manager certified Cheesemonger, Sommelier and Cicerone joins us with the specifics of what’s on the menu.

Filippo Fusco of Angelina's Pizzeria NapoletanaAngelina’s Pizzeria Napoletana is a fine-casual Italian restaurant located in Irvine in the Los Olivos Marketplace. At Angelina’s, guests dine on authentic Italian food made with only the finest ingredients imported from Italy and fresh produce from local farms. From one-of-a-kind artwork to hand-picked fixtures, the modern, upscale interior redefines the concept of a pizzeria.

Angelina’s Pizzeria specializes in authentic Neapolitan-style pizza (pizza Napoletana). Each pizza is made using traditional techniques and cooked in their twin Ferrara wood-burning pizza ovens, making Angelina’s one of the few restaurants in the United States to hold a VPN Certification (Vera Pizza Napoletana). Overseen by the Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana in Napoli, the VPN certifies that Angelina’s adheres to the strict requirements that make their pizzas “true Neopolitan Pizza.”

Angelina’s Managing Partner, Filippo Fusco, is our guest, pizza peel at the ready.

Ron Salisbury of El CholoRestaurateur Ron Salisbury has been running successful, high-volume restaurants for sixty-six years, a period of time in which most people are born and retire. He grew up working after school as a dish sorter, busser, and steam table expediter in his parents’ Los Angeles restaurant, El Cholo.

In the decades since Ron has launched restaurants throughout Southern California. In addition to the El Cholo’s newer ventures are The Cannery and Louie’s By the Bay, both located in Newport Beach.

Salisbury is not one for voluminous operating manuals but over the years he acquired a bushel of practical morsels of wisdom for operating a successful restaurant. Starting with “Our Seven Pillars” Ron has collected all these short vignettes of incredibly useful advice into the very easy-to-read volume, What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A. (That’s the Culinary Institute of America.) It’s truly an essential read for all aspiring restaurateurs.

Ron Salisbury is the recipient of the Elizabeth Burns Lifetime Achievement Award from the Los Angeles Chapter of the California Restaurant Association. He has lectured at The Collins College of Hospitality Management at California State Polytechnic University Pomona.

Ron Salisbury is with us to generously share a sampling of the practical wisdom from What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A.

Tara Gomez and Mireia Taribo Tena of Camins 2 Dreams in Lompoc CaliforniaWinemakers and life partners Mireia Taribo Tena and Tara Gomez are the creative forces at Camins 2 Deams in Lompoc, their dream winery. The grapes are sourced exclusively from select vineyards in the Santa Rita Hills, a unique appellation in Santa Barbara County.

Their philosophy is to make hand-crafted, terroir-driven wines that are fermented with natural yeast and use minimal intervention in the winery. Camins 2 Dreams believes wine is made in the vineyard and desires to showcase the typicity of each site where the grapes originate.

“We are lucky both to live and make our wines in the Santa Rita Hills where foggy mornings and cool nights combine with marine soils to make the perfect ingredients for outstanding wines. “

Current releases include Gruner Veltliner, Rose of Syrah, and three vineyard specific Syrahs.

Tara Gomez, a Native American, is also the Winemaker for Kita Wines, a small premium winery in the Santa Ynez Valley owned by the Chumash Tribe (Chumash Casino Resort.)

Mireia and Tara join us to pull the cork on Camins 2 Dreams.

Michael Hung of Faith and FlowerDTLA Pizza is a new Takeout and Delivery concept from Chef Michael Hung of Faith & Flower. The goal for Chef Michael’s new DTLA Pizza establishment is to serve meat lovers and vegans alike, quality and comfort food driven dishes prepared with house-made sourdough crusts, toppings such as Impossible beef, locally grown produce, along with Burgers that are made with American Kobe beef and burst with flavor.”

“Los Angeles meets the Oranges, as in the same area of northern New Jersey as the Sopranos, at DTLA Pizza. This area is also Chef Michael Hung’s inspiration as he drew from his New Jersey roots to create DTLA Pizza’s menu of true pizzeria classics. “As the world is today, I find myself craving comfort foods. The menu for DTLA Pizza reflects my time growing up in New Jersey eating at such institutions such as Star Tavern in Orange, NJ.  These dishes and flavors remind me of home and the joyful times I spent with my friends and family as a kid.””

“DTLA Pizza features two different styles of Pizza – expertly crafted Neapolitan-Style Pies from the wood oven and Sicilian-Style Pan Pizzas with thick focaccia crusts. In addition to the classic 4-Cheese PizzaDTLA Pizza offers two other Signature Pizzas: The Street Meat Magic Pizza loaded with pepperoni, mortadella, Italian sausage, and prosciutto, and It’s Literally Possible Pizza which is a fully plant-based pizza prepared with Impossible sausage, marinated peppers and onions, and vegan mozzarella. In addition to the Signature Pizzas, guests can also Build Your Own Pizza with a selection of over a dozen toppings, and all of the Pizzas at DTLA Pizza can be made either Neapolitan Style or Sicilian Style.”

DTLA Pizza is open for TakeoutDelivery, and Curbside Pickup (only) every Wednesday through Sunday from 5:00 pm to 10:00 pm. To order, please call 213.465.9400 and guests can Curbside pickup at 709 West 9th Street in South Park district of downtown Los Angeles by calling DTLA Pizza upon arrival, or choose Delivery through CaviarDoorDashGrubhubTock, or UberEats.

Chef Michael joins us to artfully toss and stretch the dough.

Chef Andrew Gruel savoring a New Jersey style Pizza“Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is regularly updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is slowly, with multiple hiccups, starting to come back but with a lot of new rules that restrict guest counts. Alternately Take-Out / Delivery when you can surely helps…

National Oyster Day was August 5th. We started the conversation last week about appreciating oysters in the raw state. Chef Andrew is our resident authority on these bivalve mollusks enjoyed since ancient times. We’ll resume with tips about cooking with oysters. Oyster stew anyone?

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Restaurant Manager Tracy Nelsen, Five Crowns and SideDoor, Corona del Mar
Segment Three: Filippo Fusco, Managing Partner, Angelina’s Pizzeria Napoletana, Irvine
Segment Four: Restaurateur Ron Salisbury (El Cholo) – What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A. Part One
Segment Five: Restaurateur Ron Salisbury (El Cholo) – What They Don’t Teach You at the C.I.A. Part Two
Segment Six: Winemakers Tara Gomez and Mireia Taribo, Camins 2 Dreams Winery, Lompoc
Segment Seven: Chef Michael Hung, DTLA Pizza, Los Angeles
Segment Eight: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”

Show 379, June 27, 2020: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy  (documentary feature film) is an intimate, candid perspective into the curious world of cookbook author and British ex-pat Diana Kennedy – widely regarded as the world’s expert on Mexican cuisine. At five feet tall and 97 years old, Diana is larger than life: a foul-mouthed fireball far more feisty and energetic than her age and petite frame let on. Author of nine Mexican cookbooks, she has spent over 60 years researching and documenting the regional cuisines of Mexico.” Filmmaker Elizabeth Carroll is our guide to the career of Diana Kennedy.

The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar matches contemporary California regional cuisine, with a hip, vibrant, sophisticated setting, to create a cutting-edge dining experience. Located at The District in Tustin, overlooking the Marina in Newport Beach, and at Westfield UTC in La Jolla, The Winery culinary team is led by Executive Chef & Partner Yvon Goetz. The other Founding Partners are JC Clow and Wine Director William Lewis. William Lewis uncorks it all for us.

Legendary Los Angeles Restaurateur and ever-gracious host Piero Selvaggio attentively presided over the iconic Valentino in Santa Monica for over 46 years. Valentino was a landmark establishment in the West defining regional Italian fine dining with polished service combined with a deep and well-maintained wine cellar. Piero’s most recent undertaking was the debut of Louie’s by the Bay (modern Italian steakhouse) in Newport Beach with Restaurateur Ron Salisbury. His current effort is with Chef Celestino Drago and is the pending relaunching of the elegant Drago Centro in Downtown Los Angeles in the City National Bank Tower. We’ll hear all about it with Piero Selvaggio.

Leading the Margerum Wine Company team (with a handsome new tasting room at Hotel Californian in the State Building) is creator and namesake, Douglas Barden Margerum, a long-term Santa Barbara resident who has been a fixture in the Santa Barbara food and wine scene for over 35 years. Doug is also is a member of the (rescheduled for 2021) Santa Barbara Culinary Experience (SBCE) Advisory Committee. Doug is our guest to pull the cork for us on the reopening of the Margerum Wine Company Tasting Room which now also includes the Barden Wines Tasting Room.

“Under the supervision of prominent executive chef Avi Kapoor, the latest incarnation of the Akbar restaurant family, Kapoor’s Akbar, offers diners an innovative Indian food experience on the edge of Downtown LA. Relying on traditional recipes passed down through the family but updated with non-traditional techniques and ingredients, Kapoor’s Akbar serves freshly prepared dishes that are rich in taste, temptingly presented and always memorable.” We gently pull Chef Avi away from the tandoor oven for a long overdue visit.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is regularly updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is slowly starting to come back but with a lot of new rules that restrict guest counts. Alternately Take-Out / Delivery when you can surely helps… Covid 19 has impacted the food system across the United States. Oddly there are spot shortages of foodstuffs in some areas and surpluses in others. We’ll, of course, “Ask the Chef.”

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness (with proper Social Distancing) on this week’s not-to-miss show!

Play

Show 379, June 27, 2020: Restaurateur Piero Selvaggio, Drago Centro and Louie’s by the Bay Part One

Piero Salvaggio of Valentino Santa MonicaLegendary Los Angeles Restaurateur and ever-gracious host Piero Selvaggio attentively presided over the iconic Valentino in Santa Monica for over 46 years. Valentino was truly a landmark establishment defining regional Italian fine dining in the West combined with a deep and well-maintained wine cellar and polished service. Piero’s most recent venture was the debut of Louie’s by the Bay (modern Italian steakhouse) in Newport Beach with Restaurateur Ron Salisbury.

His new project is with acclaimed Chef Celestino Drago with the about to relaunch, handsome and elegant Drago Centro in Downtown Los Angeles in the City National Bank Tower. “At Drago Centro, located in the heart of Downtown Los Angeles, Chef Celestino Drago is giving his classic Italian techniques a contemporary flair. The lunch and dinner menus at Drago Centro feature a wide range of options, from hand-cranked pastas, savory steaks and elegant desserts sure to end the meal on a sweet note.”

We’ll hear all about it with Piero Selvaggio.

Play

Show 379, June 27, 2020: Restaurateur Piero Selvaggio, Drago Centro and Louie’s by the Bay Part Two

Piero Salvaggio of Valentino Santa MonicaLegendary Los Angeles Restaurateur and ever-gracious host Piero Selvaggio attentively presided over the iconic Valentino in Santa Monica for over 46 years. Valentino was truly a landmark establishment defining regional Italian fine dining in the West combined with a deep and well-maintained wine cellar. Piero’s most recent venture was the launching of Louie’s by the Bay (modern Italian steakhouse) in Newport Beach with Restaurateur Ron Salisbury.

His new project is with acclaimed Chef Celestino Drago with the about to relaunch Drago Centro in Downtown Los Angeles in the City National Bank Tower. “At Drago Centro, located in the heart of Downtown Los Angeles, Chef Celestino Drago is giving his classic Italian techniques a contemporary flair. The lunch and dinner menus at Drago Centro feature a wide range of options, from hand-cranked pastas, savory steaks and elegant desserts sure to end the meal on a sweet note.”

We continue our conversation on hospitality at its best with acclaimed Restaurateur Piero Selvaggio.

Play

June 27: Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy, The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar, Piero Selvaggio, Margerum Wine Company, Kapoor’s Akbar

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: “Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy” with Producer & Director Elizabeth Carroll
Segment Three: The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar with Founding Partner & Wine Director William Lewis
Segment Four: Restaurateur Piero Selvaggio, Drago Centro and Louie’s by the Bay Part One
Segment Five: Restaurateur Piero Selvaggio, Drago Centro and Louie’s by the Bay Part Two
Segment Six: Doug Margerum, Margerum Wine Company, Santa Barbara
Segment Seven: Chef Avinash Kapoor, Kapoor’s Akbar, Downtown Los Angeles
Segment Eight: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”

“Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy (documentary feature film) is an intimate, candid perspective into the curious world of cookbook author and British ex-pat Diana Kennedy – widely regarded as the world’s expert on Mexican cuisine. At five feet tall and 97 years old, Diana is larger than life: a foul-mouthed fireball far more feisty and energetic than her age and petite frame let on. Author of nine Mexican cookbooks, she has spent over 60 years researching and documenting the regional cuisines of Mexico.” Filmmaker Elizabeth Carroll is our guide to the career of Diana Kennedy.

The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar matches contemporary California regional cuisine, with a hip, vibrant, sophisticated setting, to create a cutting-edge dining experience. Located at The District in Tustin, overlooking the Marina in Newport Beach, and at Westfield UTC in La Jolla, The Winery culinary team is led by Executive Chef & Partner Yvon Goetz. The other Founding Partners are JC Clow and Wine Director William Lewis. William Lewis uncorks it all for us.

Legendary Los Angeles Restaurateur and ever-gracious host Piero Selvaggio attentively presided over the iconic Valentino in Santa Monica for over 46 years. Valentino was a landmark establishment defining regional Italian fine dining with polished service in the West combined with a deep and well-maintained wine cellar. Piero’s most recent undertaking was the debut of Louie’s by the Bay (modern Italian steakhouse) in Newport Beach with Restaurateur Ron Salisbury. His current effort is with Chef Celestino Drago is the just relaunched, elegant Drago Centro in Downtown Los Angeles. We’ll hear all about it with Piero Selvaggio.

Leading the Margerum Wine Company team (with a handsome new tasting room at Hotel Californian in the State Building) is creator and namesake, Douglas Barden Margerum, a long-term Santa Barbara resident who has been a fixture in the Santa Barbara food and wine scene for over 35 years. Doug is also is a member of the (rescheduled for 2021) Santa Barbara Culinary Experience (SBCE) Advisory Committee. Doug is our guest to pull the cork for us on the reopening of Margerum Wine Company.

“Under the supervision of prominent executive chef Avi Kapoor, the latest incarnation of the Akbar restaurant family, Kapoor’s Akbar, offers diners an innovative Indian food experience on the edge of Downtown LA. Relying on traditional recipes passed down through the family but updated with non-traditional techniques and ingredients, Kapoor’s Akbar serves freshly prepared dishes that are rich in taste, temptingly presented and always memorable.” We gently pull Chef Avi away from the tandoor oven for a long overdue visit.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is regularly updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is slowly starting to come back but with a lot of new rules that restrict guest counts. Alternately Take-Out / Delivery when you can surely helps… Covid 19 has impacted the food system across the United States. Oddly there are spot shortages of foodstuffs in some areas and surpluses in others. We’ll, of course, “Ask the Chef.”

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness (with proper Social Distancing) on this week’s not-to-miss show!

Filmmaker Elizabeth CarrollDiana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy (documentary feature film) is an intimate, candid perspective into the curious world of cookbook author and British ex-pat Diana Kennedy – widely regarded as the world’s expert on Mexican cuisine. At five feet tall and 97 years old, Diana is larger than life: a foul-mouthed fireball far more feisty and energetic than her age and petite frame let on. Author of nine Mexican cookbooks, she has spent over 60 years researching and documenting the regional cuisines of Mexico.

“Kennedy has lived ‘off-the-grid’ on an eight-acre ranch outside Zitácuaro, Michoacán since the 1970’s: composting, growing her own crops, and using solar power to run her home. Aware of her own mortality, she is working tirelessly to solidify the legacy of her life’s efforts, with the hope of turning her home into a foundation for culinary education in Mexico.”

“A two-time James Beard Award winner, Diana was decorated with an Order of the Aztec Eagle from the Mexican government and became a Member of the Order of the British Empire from the UK in 2002. Despite her notable achievements, Diana is difficult to categorize. Often referred to as the “Julia Child of Mexico,” but Diana prefers a different title: “The Mick Jagger of Mexican Cuisine.”

“Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy explores Diana’s vibrant,  unconventional life, blending vérité with archival footage, photographs and interviews. Viewers accompany her in intimate settings at home – cooking, gardening, and traveling to accept awards and speak to audiences. The film features interviews with notable chefs and friends including Alice Waters, José Andrés, Rick Bayless, and Gabriela Cámara, along with footage from Diana’s TLC cooking show, “The Art of Mexican Cooking.” Whether she is instructing chefs at her infamous “Boot Camp” cooking school, blazing her truck over the cobblestone roads of Zitácuaro or sunbathing with a scotch on her balcony, Diana is captivatingly bold, spirited, and unapologetically herself.”

Sir William Lewis of the Winery Restaurant and Wine Bar in TustinThe Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar matches contemporary California regional cuisine, with a hip, vibrant, sophisticated setting, to create a cutting-edge dining experience. Located at The District in Tustin, overlooking the Marina in Newport Beach, and at Westfield UTC in La Jolla, The Winery culinary team is led by Executive Chef & Partner Yvon Goetz.” The other Founding Partners are JC Clow and Wine Director William Lewis.

All of The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar restaurants have reopened for dine-in. The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar locations offer a warm and passionate menu complemented by the perfect wines – almost endless possibilities and something to suit every palate. Wine Director & Founding Partner William Lewis will update us on what is available currently and what they were able to offer their guests during the ban on dine-in.

Piero Salvaggio of Valentino Santa MonicaLegendary Los Angeles Restaurateur and ever-gracious host Piero Selvaggio attentively presided over the iconic Valentino in Santa Monica for over 46 years. Valentino was truly a landmark establishment defining regional Italian fine dining in the West combined with a deep and well-maintained wine cellar and polished service. Piero’s most recent venture was the debut of Louie’s by the Bay (modern Italian steakhouse) in Newport Beach with Restaurateur Ron Salisbury.

His new project is with acclaimed Chef Celestino Drago with the just relaunched Drago Centro in Downtown Los Angeles. “At Drago Centro, located in the heart of Downtown Los Angeles, Chef Celestino Drago is giving his classic Italian techniques a contemporary flair. The lunch and dinner menus at Drago Centro feature a wide range of options, from hand-cranked pastas, savory steaks and elegant desserts sure to end the meal on a sweet note.”

We’ll hear all about it with Piero Selvaggio.

Douglas Barden MargerumLeading the Margerum Wine Company team (with a new tasting room at Hotel Californian in the State Building) is creator and namesake, Douglas Barden Margerum, a long- term Santa Barbara resident who has been a fixture in the Santa Barbara food and wine scene for over 35 years. Doug is also is a member of the (rescheduled for 2021) Santa Barbara Culinary Experience Advisory Committee.

“Margerum Wine Company produces limited quantities of wines made from grapes grown both on their estate vineyard and grapes purchased from other top vineyards from in and around Santa Barbara County. The 18-acre estate vineyard is planted exclusively to Rhône grape varietals. The acreage is divided between limestone hillsides and gravelly alluvial flatlands along Alamo Pintado Creek. The wines are made at their state-of-the-art winery located on Industrial Way in Buellton.”

“Owner and Director of Winemaking, Douglas Barden Margerum, works with the top vineyards from the cool, eastern end of the valley in Happy Canyon to the western end’s cold vineyards of Sta. Rita Hills. Doug carefully selects the vineyards with meticulous attention to detail in all factors influencing the ultimate quality of the wines, including pruning, soil, climate, and farming methods.”

“Margerum Wine Company is committed to creating hand-crafted wines using only the highest quality grapes in order to make wines that are indicative of the place where they are grown. They strive to make wines naturally, to make wines that have individual characteristics and to make wines with personality. The scale of production is kept at a level where they can touch and know the wine as it is raised to the bottle – the antithesis of mass production. The standards of quality are measured by their own rigid criteria – not by external sources. They make wines they personally enjoy – some to drink young, others for long aging in cool cellars for future generations to enjoy, but mostly to share at the table with family and friends.”

“Doug’s multi-faceted background as the Sommelier/Owner of The Wine Cask, a Wine Spectator Grand Award restaurant recipient, and as a highly respected winemaker made him sought out by a variety of wineries to assist in the formation of their brands. Doug has consulted for Chêne Bleu super Rhône wines in France, and continues to consult for La Encantada Vineyards, Rancho Boa Vista and Happy Canyon Vineyards, all in Santa Barbara County, as well as the Santa Barbara wines of Paradise Springs Winery based in Virginia.”

Avi Kapoor of Kapoor's Akbar“Under the supervision of prominent executive chef Avi Kapoor, the latest incarnation of the Akbar restaurant family, Kapoor’s Akbar, offers diners an innovative Indian food experience on the edge of Downtown L.A. Relying on traditional recipes passed down through the family but updated with non-traditional techniques and ingredients, Kapoor’s Akbar serves freshly prepared dishes that are rich in taste, temptingly presented and always memorable.”

“Omnivores, vegetarians and vegans will find a wide range of selections to satisfy their hunger, joining the thousands of diners who have feasted over the years with generations of Kapoor Family restauranteurs.”

We gently pull Chef Avi away from the tandoor oven for a visit.

Chef Andrew Gruel savoring a New Jersey style PizzaOur own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is regularly updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Dine-in is slowly starting to come back but with a lot of new rules that restrict guest counts. Alternately Take-Out / Delivery when you can surely helps…

Covid 19 has impacted the food system across the United States. Oddly there are spot shortages of foodstuffs in some areas and surpluses in others. We’ll, of course, “Ask the Chef.”

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: “Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy” with Producer & Director Elizabeth Carroll
Segment Three: The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar with Founding Partner & Wine Director William Lewis
Segment Four: Restaurateur Piero Selvaggio, Drago Centro and Louie’s by the Bay Part One
Segment Five: Restaurateur Piero Selvaggio, Drago Centro and Louie’s by the Bay Part Two
Segment Six: Doug Margerum, Margerum Wine Company, Santa Barbara
Segment Seven: Chef Avinash Kapoor, Kapoor’s Akbar, Downtown Los Angeles
Segment Eight: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”

Show 370, April 25, 2020: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

It’s a time of great concern for all of us and our “SoCal Restaurant Show” mission, until the Covid-19 crisis is fully abated, is to provide reliable and genuinely useful information on how the restaurant business is coping with the rapidly evolving events. With an emphasis on the health, safety and well-being of our listeners we’ll be detailing what the range of services restaurants can now provide to their guests. Creativity and adaptability are at the forefront. We’re keeping it upbeat…

Chefs and restaurateurs are the most generous people I know. In times of need they are always the very first in generously giving back and meaningfully supporting their communities. Truly remarkable…Right now restaurants urgently need our support to stay afloat. Kindly keep this in mind and please do what you possibly can to support a community-focused, local restaurant….

As always, we greatly appreciate you being a part of our loyal listening audience. Truly couldn’t do it without the encouragement of the foodie community.

“While the California Restaurant Association Foundation has been around for more than three decades, the inspiration for Restaurants Care came just a few years ago in 2015. Jose, a cook in Sacramento, was struck in a hit and run on his way home after a late-night shift. He suffered a broken back, amongst other life-threatening injuries.

The restaurant community came together and raised money to support Jose while he recovered. At that moment, The CRA Foundation knew that something bigger had to happen. Restaurants Care was created to take care of the most vulnerable in our industry.” Such is the case during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. We’ll get all the details from Alycia Harshfield, Executive Director of the CRA Foundation.

Philippe’s (Philippe The Original) in Downtown Los Angeles has reopened for takeout and delivery with French Dips, sides and desserts, as well as beer and wine, available to go. Guests can now call the restaurant or order online via ChowNow to place an order for pickup. Delivery options are available from Postmates. Manager & Partner Andrew Binder provides all the juicy details.

The Pantry at Sapphire, Cellar. Craft. Cook, located at 1200 South Coast Highway in Laguna Beach, reopened Wednesday, April 1 for daily takeout service from 7 a.m. – 8 p.m. during the COVID-19 crisis.

Guests may call ahead (949.339.3027) to order breakfast, lunch or dinner and pick-up at The Pantry’s front door entrance where polite social distancing is observed. Food prices range from $7 – $15. Restaurateur Russ Bendel assumed ownership of the landmark property in March from Sapphire’s founder-proprietor, chef, Azmin Ghahreman, CEO of Sapphire Culinary Group. Restaurateur Russ Bendel is our guest.

Back in February, the Clink Different – Experience the Wines of Europe evening was hosted at The NoMad Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles. It was a walk-around tasting for wine and lifestyle journalists with four flights of unusual wines from Bordeaux and Wines of Germany followed by a multi-course wine paired dinner. The European wines featured were hand-selected by Ryan Bailey, the accomplished Wine Director for NoMad Los Angeles. Sommelier Ryan artfully pulls the cork on Clink Different for us.

El Cholo is L.A.’s very first surviving Mexican restaurant. Since opening its doors in 1923, El Cholo has operated as a family-owned business and today, the restaurants are run by Ron Salisbury, grandson of the founders. The legacy at El Cholo lies in its commitment to quality ingredients, long family history, loyal employees (some with the restaurants nearly 40 years) and their devoted and loyal clientele. Through prohibition, the L.A. Riots, true Hollywood glamour and into the 2000’s, El Cholo continues to bring back fond memories for their guests and create new ones.” Family patriarch Ron Salisbury (with 66 years of hands-on Hospitality Business experience) is our guest.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Take-out/delivery when you can surely helps…Of course, the safety of restaurant employees and guests comes first. Also some genuinely useful tips for cooking at home. Herbs add a lot of flavor to home cooking. We’ll “Ask the Chef.”

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness (with proper Social Distancing) on this week’s not-to-miss show!

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Show 370, April 25, 2020: Restaurateur Ron Salisbury – El Cholo Family of Restaurants

Ron SalisburyEl Cholo is L.A.’s very first surviving Mexican restaurant. Since first opening its doors in 1923, El Cholo has operated as a family-owned business and today, the restaurants are run by Ron Salisbury, grandson of the founders. The legacy at El Cholo lies in its commitment to quality ingredients, long family history, loyal employees (some with us nearly 40 years) and their devoted and loyal clientele. Through prohibition, the L.A. Riots, true Hollywood glamour and into the 2000’s, El Cholo continues to bring back memories for their guests and create new ones.”

Also part of the El Cholo Family of restaurants is The Cannery Seafood of the Pacific and Louie’s By The Bay both in Newport Beach.

Family patriarch Ron Salisbury (with 66 years of hands-on Hospitality Business experience) is our guest.

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