Show 426, May 22, 2021: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

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

“Palm Springs is the perfect destination for those seeking a hip, architecturally cool city to explore. For over 100 years, artists, designers, architects and Hollywood stars have been drawn to this corner of the Southern California desert making the city a hot bed of creativity.” ​The well-informed and personable Kurt Cyr is the official guide for Palm Springs Mod Squad which provides in-person, one-of-a-kind architecture and design tours of Palm Springs. Both of Kurt’s signature Mid-Century Modern architecture tours have been carefully modified to accommodate all COVID 19 safety measures. Kurt Cyr is our guide to Palm Springs Mod Squad.

The Jalama Wines Tasting Room located in the historic La Plaza building in downtown Palm Springs offers a truly authentic tasting opportunity where guests experience the casual and inviting atmosphere of California’s Central Coast wine country. The Jalama Wines vineyards are located in the Santa Ynez Valley of Santa Barbara County. Jalama Wines’ artisan winery produces less than 1,000 cases of wine yearly, including estate Pinot Noir, sourced Syrah, Grenache, and Petite Sirah, and several Rhone blends. The two estate vineyards are Cargasacchi Vineyard – Sta. Rita Hills and Jalama Vineyard – Santa Barbara County. Winemaker Mark Cargasacchi joins us to pull the cork on Jalama Wines.

“Guided by the seasons and nurtured by the California sunshine, cook and gardener Valerie Rice (Santa Barbara-based) has created a book that puts the joy back into cooking. With her signature no-fuss style and cocktail always in hand, Valerie has developed a collection of recipes, organized by season for stunning main dishes, sides, salads, soups, and desserts in her debut book, Lush Life: Food & Drinks from the Garden (Prospect Park Books) that also includes cocktails, garden planning & tips, and wine commentary from award-winning Rajat Parr, a frequent guest at her table.” James Beard Award-Winning Chef Suzanne Goin (a.o.c.) penned the Foreword. Valerie Rice is our guest to turn the pages of Lush Life for us.

“Following a groundbreaking collaborative event featuring women-owned restaurants across Los Angeles in January 2021 called 10 Days RE:Her, newly formed non-profit RE:Her has organized a Covid-19 relief grant program, sponsored by DoorDash. RE:Her will distribute 15 cash grants of $10,000 each to female-identifying food and beverage entrepreneurs in LA County, which recipients can use to bolster their business however they see fit. Grantees will also receive access to consulting and mentorship from specialists in restaurant finance, HR and PR/Marketing.” A committee of distinguished hospitality and business experts will select the grantees, including consultant and media personality, Chef Monti Carlo, who 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 continually updating us on the real impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants during the initial, highly fluid stages of the hoped-for recovery which remains a genuine concern. Restaurants in Southern California are finally again allowed to operate for outside/patio dining and inside dining at reduced capacities with all the requisite COVID 19 safety precautions. The Restaurant Revitalization Fund of $28.6 billion is part of The American Rescue Plan. It’s already oversubscribed by twice the amount approved by Congress. Can it be replenished? Chef Andrew has his thoughts on this development.

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

Play

Show 426, May 22, 2021: Chef Monti Carlo of Island Girl Cooks Part One

The Monti Carlo of Everyday Food

“Following a groundbreaking collaborative event featuring women-owned restaurants across Los Angeles in January 2021 called 10 Days RE:Her, newly formed non-profit RE:Her has organized a Covid-19 relief grant program, sponsored by DoorDash. RE:Her will distribute 15 cash grants of $10,000 each to female-identifying food and beverage entrepreneurs in LA County, which recipients can use to bolster their business however they see fit. Grantees will also receive access to consulting and mentorship from specialists in restaurant finance (Elissa Phillips of Mise En Place Restaurant Services), HR (Delmy Franco of HR Specialists Group) and PR/Marketing (Joy Limanon of Peridot Consulting).”

A committee of distinguished hospitality and business experts will select the grantees, including consultant and media personality, Monti Carlo, who is our guest.

“Applications for the grant program will be accepted from May 17-23. Grant recipients will be announced on June 14. Independent, majority women-owned restaurants or culinary businesses in Los Angeles County are encouraged to apply, including catering companies and food trucks. Check out the specifics for eligibility.

Play

Show 426, May 22, 2021: Chef Monti Carlo of Island Girl Cooks Part Two

The Monti Carlo of Everyday Food

“Following a groundbreaking collaborative event featuring women-owned restaurants across Los Angeles in January 2021 called 10 Days RE:Her, newly formed non-profit RE:Her has organized a Covid-19 relief grant program, sponsored by DoorDash. RE:Her will distribute 15 cash grants of $10,000 each to female-identifying food and beverage entrepreneurs in LA County, which recipients can use to bolster their business however they see fit. Grantees will also receive access to consulting and mentorship from specialists in restaurant finance (Elissa Phillips of Mise En Place Restaurant Services), HR (Delmy Franco of HR Specialists Group) and PR/Marketing (Joy Limanon of Peridot Consulting).”

A committee of distinguished hospitality and business experts will select the grantees, including consultant and media personality, Monti Carlo, who continues as our guest.

“Applications for the grant program will be accepted from May 17-23. Grant recipients will be announced on June 14. Independent, majority women-owned restaurants or culinary businesses in Los Angeles County are encouraged to apply, including catering companies and food trucks. Check out the specifics for eligibility.

“For decades, cooking at the James Beard House in Greenwich Village has been an aspiration for many chefs and considered a career milestone. In May of 2021, The James Beard Foundation launched the Beard House Fellows program presented by Capital One, which re-envisions the potential of this historic space into a hub of training and professional development for talented emerging chefs.” Each Fellow will have a one-month residence at the Beard House where JBF will provide hard skills training in finance, legal, media training, wine knowledge, social media, food policy and advocacy and leadership assessment. The May fellow is Nicole Merino. Chef Monti Carlo serves on the Advisory Committee.

Play

May 22: Palm Springs Mod Squad, Jalama Wines, Valerie Rice, Monti Carlo

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Kurt Cyr, Palm Springs Mod Squad Tours
Segment Three: Winemaker Mark Cargasacchi, Jalama Wines, Lompoc
Segment Four: Valerie Rice, Lush Life – Food & Drinks from the Garden Part One
Segment Five: Valerie Rice, Lush Life – Food & Drinks from the Garden Part Two
Segment Six: Chef Monti Carlo of Island Girl Cooks Part One
Segment Seven: Chef Monti Carlo of Island Girl Cooks Part Two
Segment Eight: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”

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

“Palm Springs is the perfect destination for those seeking a hip, architecturally cool city to explore. For over 100 years, artists, designers, architects and Hollywood stars have been drawn to this corner of the Southern California desert making the city a hot bed of creativity.”

The well-informed and personable Kurt Cyr is the official guide for Palm Springs Mod Squad which provides in-person, one-of-a-kind architecture and design tours of Palm Springs. Both of Kurt’s signature Mid-Century Modern architecture tours have been carefully modified to accommodate all COVID 19 safety measures. Kurt Cyr is our guide to Palm Springs Mod Squad.

The Jalama Wines Tasting Room located in the historic La Plaza building in downtown Palm Springs offers a truly authentic tasting opportunity where guests experience the casual and inviting atmosphere of California’s Central Coast wine country. The Jalama Wines vineyards are located in the Santa Ynez Valley of Santa Barbara County. Jalama Wines’ artisan winery produces less than 1,000 cases of wine yearly, including estate Pinot Noir, sourced Syrah, Grenache, and Petite Sirah, and several Rhone blends. The two estate vineyards are Cargasacchi Vineyard – Sta. Rita Hills and Jalama Vineyard – Santa Barbara County. Winemaker Mark Cargasacchi joins us to pull the cork on Jalama Wines.

“Guided by the seasons and nurtured by the California sunshine, cook and gardener Valerie Rice (Santa Barbara-based) has created a book that puts the joy back into cooking. With her signature no-fuss style and cocktail always in hand, Valerie has developed a collection of recipes, organized by season for stunning main dishes, sides, salads, soups, and desserts in her debut book, Lush Life : Food & Drinks from the Garden (Prospect Park Books) that also includes cocktails, garden planning & tips, and wine commentary from award-winning Rajat Parr, a frequent guest at her table.” James Beard Award-Winning Chef Suzanne Goin (a.o.c.) penned the Foreword. Valerie Rice is our guest to turn the pages of Lush Life for us.

“Following a groundbreaking collaborative event featuring women-owned restaurants across Los Angeles in January 2021 called 10 Days RE:Her, newly formed non-profit RE:Her has organized a Covid-19 relief grant program, sponsored by DoorDash. RE:Her will distribute 15 cash grants of $10,000 each to female-identifying food and beverage entrepreneurs in LA County, which recipients can use to bolster their business however they see fit. Grantees will also receive access to consulting and mentorship from specialists in restaurant finance, HR and PR/Marketing.” A committee of distinguished hospitality and business experts will select the grantees, including consultant and media personality, Chef Monti Carlo, who 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 continually updating us on the real impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants during the initial, highly fluid stages of the hoped-for recovery which remains a genuine concern. Restaurants in Southern California are finally again allowed to operate for outside/patio dining and inside dining at reduced capacities with all the requisite COVID 19 safety precautions. The Restaurant Revitalization Fund of $28.6 billion is part of The American Rescue Plan. It’s already oversubscribed by twice the amount approved by Congress. Can it be replenished? Chef Andrew has his thoughts on this development.

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

Kurt Cyr of Plam Springs Mod Squad Tours

“Palm Springs is the perfect destination for those seeking a hip, architecturally cool city to explore. For over 100 years, artists, designers, architects and Hollywood stars have been drawn to this corner of the Southern California desert making the city a hot bed of creativity.”

The well-informed and personable Kurt Cyr is the official guide for Palm Springs Mod Squad which provides in-person, one-of-a-kind architecture and design tours of Palm Springs. Both of Kurt’s signature tours have been carefully modified to accommodate all COVID 19 safety measures.

The current offerings (by reservation only) are the Socially Distanced Tour and the Interior Socially Distanced Tour. Guests follow the Mod Squad van in their own vehicle while Kurt provides engaging commentary via cell phone.

“The Interior Socially Distanced Tour takes guests into three mid- century Palm Springs houses. Guests learn how Desert Modern design is as appropriate today as it was 60-70 years ago.”

Mark Cargasacchi of Jalama Wines

“The Jalama Wines Tasting Room located in the historic La Plaza building in downtown Palm Springs offers a truly authentic tasting opportunity where guests experience the casual and inviting atmosphere of California’s Central Coast wine country. The Jalama Wines vineyards are located in the Santa Ynez Valley of Santa Barbara County.”

“Jalama Wines’ artisan winery produces less than 1,000 cases of wine yearly, including estate Pinot Noir, sourced Syrah, Grenache, and Petite Sirah, and several Rhone blends.” The two estate vineyards are Cargasacchi Vineyard – Sta. Rita Hills and Jalama Vineyard – Santa Barbara County.

“The Palm Springs Tasting Room is the first and only one of its kind in the area. It’s a welcoming spot for anyone who enjoys exceptional wine. You’re likely to meet winemaker Mark Cargasacchi there and get a chance to learn what makes Jalama Wines so special.” The Tasting Room is open Friday through Sunday from 12 Noon to 5:00 p.m.

Winemaker Mark Cargasacchi joins us to pull the cork on Jalama Wines.

Valerie Rice of Lush Life and Eat Drink Garden

“Guided by the seasons and nurtured by the California sunshine, cook and gardener Valerie Rice has created a book that puts the joy back into cooking. With her signature no-fuss style and cocktail always in hand, Valerie has developed a collection of recipes, organized by season for stunning main dishes, sides, salads, soups, and desserts in her debut book, Lush Life: Food & Drinks from the Garden (Prospect Park Books) that also includes cocktails, garden planning & tips, and wine commentary from award-winning sommelier and winemaker Rajat Parr, a frequent guest at her table.”

“In her Foreword to the book, James Beard Award-Winning Chef Suzanne Goin writes, “…Whoever came up with the title Lush Life has hit the nail directly on the head. But it’s not just the beautiful setting, the glorious garden, or the flavorful and captivating food and drink—the lushness stems from Valerie’s heart and soul. Her passion for gardening, cooking, and entertaining is a triumvirate of riches to be enjoyed by anyone who finds themselves fortunate enough to be welcomed into her home. This passion and love for ingredients…and the art of time around the table are Valerie’s magic, and she has captured that spirit and meticulously passed it on in these pages.””

“Chef Suzanne Goin and Caroline Styne (The Lucques Group) welcome their friend Valerie Rice, to a.o.c. to celebrate the publication of her new book, Lush Life: Food & Drinks from the Garden. The Lush Life Dinner will be held at a.o.c. in Los Angeles on Tuesday, May 25, 2021, from 5:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. Valerie will be joined by James Beard Foundation award-winning Winemaker and Sommelier Rajat Parr, who curated the wine pairings for the dinner (and her cookbook), and both will be available to meet guests and sign cookbooks.”

“Suzanne, who contributed the foreword to the book, created a menu from the spring and summer chapters of the book, showcasing the best of the season. The four-course dinner begins with Zucchini Feta Fritters with Tahini Yogurt Sauce and Radish Tartine with Dill Butter. Next is a course of Ridgeback Prawn Chopped Salad with Spicy Thousand Island and a California Halibut Ceviche with Guacamole and Tortilla Chips.”

“For the main course, guests may choose from the vegetarian Blistered Asparagus with Pistachios, Green Garlic and Chives, plus Grilled King Trumpet Mushrooms with Sherry Marinade and Green Garden Rice, or Orange-Marinated Tri-Tip with Chimichurri & Padron Peppers and Crispy Ghee-Fried Potatoes with Fresh Bay Aïoli.”

“Finish with an Apricot Amaretto Torte with White Chocolate-Lemon Verbena Ice Cream for dessert.”

“Eat and drink what’s in season and you’ll never grow bored, your menus will be less complicated, and everything will taste better. That’s Valerie Rice’s (Santa Barbara-based) motto, and it’s guided her to become an accomplished gardener, cook, and cocktail maker, three talents that—along with her charm and no-fuss style—have made her EatDrinkGarden Instagram and blog a hit. In Lush Life: Food & Drinks from the Garden, Valerie brings together her favorite seasonal recipes for entertaining, family meals, snacks, and so much more, including cocktail recipes and wine advice. Rigorously home tested and gorgeously photographed by Gemma and Andrew Ingalls, Lush Life is a California dream of a cookbook that will inspire readers to grow their own, cook it fresh, and pour a luscious beverage.”

Valerie Rice is our guest to turn the pages of Lush Life for us.

The Monti Carlo of Everyday Food

“Following a groundbreaking collaborative event featuring women-owned restaurants across Los Angeles in January 2021 called 10 Days RE:Her, newly formed non-profit RE:Her has organized a Covid-19 relief grant program, sponsored by DoorDash. RE:Her will distribute 15 cash grants of $10,000 each to female-identifying food and beverage entrepreneurs in LA County, which recipients can use to bolster their business however they see fit. Grantees will also receive access to consulting and mentorship from specialists in restaurant finance (Elissa Phillips of Mise En Place Restaurant Services), HR (Delmy Franco of HR Specialists Group) and PR/Marketing (Joy Limanon of Peridot Consulting).”

A committee of distinguished hospitality and business experts will select the grantees, including consultant and media personality, Monti Carlo, who is our guest.

“Applications for the grant program will be accepted from May 17-23. Grant recipients will be announced on June 14. Independent, majority women-owned restaurants or culinary businesses in Los Angeles County are encouraged to apply, including catering companies and food trucks. Check out the specifics for eligibility.

“For decades, cooking at the James Beard House in Greenwich Village has been an aspiration for many chefs and considered a career milestone. In May of 2021, The James Beard Foundation launched the Beard House Fellows program presented by Capital One, which re-envisions the potential of this historic space into a hub of training and professional development for talented emerging chefs.” Each Fellow will have a one-month residence at the Beard House where JBF will provide hard skills training in finance, legal, media training, wine knowledge, social media, food policy and advocacy and leadership assessment. The May fellow is Nicole Merino. Chef Monti Carlo serves on the Advisory Committee.

Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group

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 continually updating us on the real impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants during the initial, highly fluid stages of the hoped-for recovery which remains a genuine concern. Restaurants in Southern California are finally again allowed to operate for outside/patio dining and inside dining at reduced capacities with all the requisite COVID 19 safety precautions.

The Restaurant Revitalization Fund of $28.6 billion is part of The American Rescue Plan. It’s already oversubscribed by twice the amount approved by Congress. Can it be replenished? Chef Andrew has his thoughts on this development.

Remember the juicy and delicious Community Burger (more than a mouthful) is available at all Southern California locations of Slapfish. The worthy burger is free with any donation to 86 Restaurant Struggle.” 100 per cent of that money goes to benefit struggling restaurant workers.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Kurt Cyr, Palm Springs Mod Squad Tours
Segment Three: Winemaker Mark Cargasacchi, Jalama Wines, Lompoc
Segment Four: Valerie Rice, Lush Life – Food & Drinks from the Garden Part One
Segment Five: Valerie Rice, Lush Life – Food & Drinks from the Garden Part Two
Segment Six: Chef Monti Carlo of Island Girl Cooks Part One
Segment Seven: Chef Monti Carlo of Island Girl Cooks Part Two
Segment Eight: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”

Show 373, May 16, 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 ever-changing range of services restaurants can now provide to their guests. Creativity and adaptability are at the forefront. We’re doing our level best to keep it upbeat…

Chefs and restaurateurs are honestly the most generous people we 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 (as you can afford) 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 enthusiastic encouragement of the foodie community.

Founded in 1987 by Chef Zov Karamardian, legendary Zov’s Bistro and Bakery in Tustin, CA has become a culinary institution. Serving her unique cuisine that blends contemporary with Eastern Mediterranean influences, in an upscale chic environment. There are also Zov’s restaurants in Newport Coast, Irvine and Anaheim. The Tustin and Newport Coast locations are now serving Family Meals and Takeout Menu items curbside. 2nd generation Karamardian Family member, Armen, joins us with the details and looks to the future.

The enduring Casa Vega is a landmark Mexican restaurant that has been operating in the San Fernando Valley for almost 64 years. It’s located on the familiar Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks and is one of the longest running, continuously family-owned restaurants in greater Los Angeles. Rafael “Ray” Vega opened Casa Vega in 1956 after being inspired by the success of his parents’ earlier restaurant, Café Caliente, which was on Olvera St. and operated throughout the 1930’s. Casa Vega has recently reopened for take-out via advance order online or by telephone.

Proprietress Christy Vega (a 3rd generation restaurateur) pours the Classic Margaritas for us.

Led by chef, author and restaurateur Marcus Samuelsson as national board co-chair, Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP,) celebrating its 30th Anniversary, transforms the lives of underserved high school students and young people locally by helping them pursue their culinary dreams. C-CAP prepares these talented young adults for college, and for careers in the restaurant and hospitality industry. This year Los Angeles awarded $430,131 in scholarships to 34 deserving high school students. Joining us are Food TV’s Chef Monti Carlo (a “Friend of C-CAP”,) college scholarship recipient Emerson Majano, a member of the Senior Class at Santee Education Complex and college scholarship recipient Morena Hernandez, a Senior at Los Angeles High School.

Newport Beach’s highly praised, Fable & Spirit, has reopened in the Via Lido Plaza for takeout service. The public, once again, is able to partake in Chef Executive Chef David Shofner’s imaginative, globally inspired dishes. In addition, Sommelier Ali Coyle presents a curated list of wines offered at exceptional prices, and Director of Spirits Drew Coyle offers a selection of signature cocktails to go. Sommelier & Coyle Family member, Ali, gently pulls the cork for us.

After honing his skills at some of the most influential restaurants in Southern California –including The Eveleigh, Father’s Office, and Umami Restaurant Group—Chef & Proprietor Ted Hopson now brings his diverse experience and curious palate to The Bellwether in Studio City, incorporating Italian, Mediterranean, and Middle Eastern flavors for a culinary spread that proudly crashes borders and challenges convention. His Partner at The Bellwether is Beverage Director Ann-Marie Verdi. At The Bellwether (in normal times,) Verdi creates a beverage program that pleases all palates through both contemporary and classic selections. Chef Ted is our guest to discuss how The Bellwether is coping with the ban on dine-in.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative <strong>“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. 3rd party delivery services seem convenient but they are costly to both consumers and restaurants. A lot more here to explain and better understand. We’ll again “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 373, May 16, 2020: Chef Monti Carlo with C-CAP Scholarship Recipient Emerson Majano

The Monti Carlo of Everyday FoodLed by chef, author and restaurateur Marcus Samuelsson as national board co-chair, Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP,) celebrating its 30th Anniversary, transforms the lives of underserved high school students and young people locally by helping them pursue their culinary dreams. C-CAP prepares these talented young adults for college, and for careers in the restaurant and hospitality industry.

This year Los Angeles awarded $430,131 in scholarships to 34 deserving high school students. Joining us is Food TV’s Chef Monti Carlo (a “Friend of C-CAP”) and college scholarship recipients Emerson Majano, a member of the Senior Class at Santee Education Complex. Chef Monti has an extra surprise for Emerson.

Founded in 1990 by culinary educator and cookbook author Richard Grausman, C-CAP impacts over 17,500 students a year nationally. Countless C-CAP alumni work throughout the country and are guiding the future leaders of the culinary and hospitality industry.

Play

Show 373, May 16, 2020: Chef Monti Carlo with C-CAP Scholarship Recipient Morena Hernandez

The Monti Carlo of Everyday FoodLed by chef, author and restaurateur Marcus Samuelsson as national board co-chair, Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP,) celebrating its 30th Anniversary, transforms the lives of underserved high school students and young people locally by helping them pursue their culinary dreams. C-CAP prepares these talented young adults for college, and for careers in the restaurant and hospitality industry.

This year Los Angeles awarded $430,131 in scholarships to 34 deserving high school students. Joining us is Food TV’s Chef Monti Carlo (a “Friend of C-CAP”) and college scholarship recipients Morena Hernandez, a distinguished Senior at Los Angeles High School. Chef Monti has an extra surprise for Morena.

Founded in 1990 by culinary educator and cookbook author Richard Grausman, C-CAP impacts over 17,500 students a year nationally. Countless C-CAP alumni work throughout the country and are guiding the future leaders of the culinary and hospitality industry.

Play

May 16: Zov’s Bistro and Bakery, Casa Vega, C-CAP with Monti Carlo, Fable & Spirit, Ted Hopson

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Restaurateur Armen Karamardian, Zov’s Bistro & Bakery
Segment Three: Restaurateur Christy Vega, Casa Vega, Sherman Oaks
Segment Four: Chef Monti Carlo with C-CAP Scholarship Recipient Emerson Majano
Segment Five: Chef Monti Carlo with C-CAP Scholarship Recipient Morena Hernandez
Segment Six: Sommelier Ali Coyle, Fable & Spirit, Newport Beach
Segment Seven: Chef & Partner Ted Hopson, The Bellwether, Studio City
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish with “Ask the Chef”

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 ever-changing range of services restaurants can now provide to their guests. Creativity and adaptability are at the forefront. We’re doing our level best to keep it upbeat…

Chefs and restaurateurs are honestly the most generous people we 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 (as you can afford) 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 enthusiastic encouragement of the foodie community.

Founded in 1987 by Chef Zov Karamardian, legendary Zov’s Bistro and Bakery in Tustin, CA has become a culinary institution. Serving her unique cuisine that blends contemporary with Eastern Mediterranean influences, in an upscale chic environment. There are now also Zov’s restaurants in Newport Coast, Irvine and Anaheim. The Tustin and Newport Coast locations are now serving Family Meals and Takeout Menu items curbside. 2nd generation Karamardian Family member, Armen, joins us with the details and looks to the future.

The enduring Casa Vega is a landmark Mexican restaurant that has been operating in the San Fernando Valley for almost 64 years. It’s located on the familiar Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks and is one of the longest running, continuously family-owned restaurants in greater Los Angeles. Rafael “Ray” Vega opened Casa Vega in 1956 after being inspired by the success of his parents’ earlier restaurant, Café Caliente, which was on Olvera St. and operated throughout the 1930’s. Casa Vega has recently reopened for take-out via advance order online or by telephone.

Proprietress Christy Vega pours the Classic Margaritas for us.

Led by chef, author and restaurateur Marcus Samuelsson as national board co-chair, Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP,) celebrating its 30th Anniversary, transforms the lives of underserved high school students and young people locally by helping them pursue their culinary dreams. C-CAP prepares these talented young adults for college, and for careers in the restaurant and hospitality industry. This year Los Angeles awarded $430,131 in scholarships to 34 deserving high school students. Joining us are Food TV’s Chef Monti Carlo (a “Friend of C-CAP”,) college scholarship recipient Emerson Majano, a member of the Senior Class at Santee Education Complex and college scholarship recipient Morena Hernandez, a Senior at Los Angeles High School.

Newport Beach’s highly praised, Fable & Spirit, has reopened in the Via Lido Plaza for takeout service. The public, once again, is able to partake in Chef Executive Chef David Shofner’s imaginative, globally inspired dishes. In addition, Sommelier Ali Coyle presents a curated list of wines offered at exceptional prices, and Director of Spirits Drew Coyle offers a selection of signature cocktails to go. Sommelier & Coyle Family member, Ali, gently pulls the cork for us.

After honing his skills at some of the most influential restaurants in Southern California –including The Eveleigh, Father’s Office, and Umami Restaurant Group—Chef & Proprietor Ted Hopson now brings his diverse experience and curious palate to The Bellwether in Studio City, incorporating Italian, Mediterranean, and Middle Eastern flavors for a culinary spread that proudly crashes borders and challenges convention. His Partner at The Bellwether is Beverage Director Ann-Marie Verdi. At The Bellwether (in normal times,) Verdi creates a beverage program that pleases all palates through both contemporary and classic selections. Chef Ted is our guest to discuss how The Bellwether is coping with the ban on dine-in.

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. 3rd party delivery services seem convenient but they are costly to both consumers and restaurants. A lot more here to explain and better understand. We’ll again “Ask the Chef.”

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

Armen Karamardian of ZovsFounded in 1987 by Chef Zov Karamardian, legendary Zov’s Bistro and Bakery in Tustin, CA has become a culinary institution. Serving her unique cuisine that blends contemporary with Eastern Mediterranean influences, in an upscale, chic environment. There are now also Zov’s restaurants in Newport Coast, Irvine and Anaheim.

The Tustin and Newport Coast locations are serving Family Meals and Takeout Menu items curbside. Zov’s General Store at the Tustin location offers a selection of gourmet groceries for curbside pickup.

“Family support has constantly been Zov’s foundation and inspiration throughout her culinary career. Zov, in addition to her husband, Gary, her son Armen, and her daughter Taleene, have created a rare family business recipe that has taken comforting creations of the family kitchen blended with Chef Zov’s culinary artistry.”

“Over the years, the Bistro in Tustin has greatly expanded into 14,000 sq. ft., encompassing an award-winning bakery, acclaimed Bistro, a luxurious private dining room, specialty foods gourmet market, cooking classes and a busy catering division that brings Zov’s culinary style to homes and special events throughout Southern California.”

2nd Generation Karamardian Family member & restaurateur, Armen, joins us with the details and looks to the future.

Christy Vega of Casa VegaThe enduring Casa Vega is a landmark Mexican restaurant that has been operating in the San Fernando Valley for almost 64 years. It’s located on the familiar Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks and is one of the longest running, continuously family-owned restaurants in greater Los Angeles. Rafael “Ray” Vega opened Casa Vega in 1956 after being inspired by the success of his parents’ earlier restaurant, Café Caliente, which was on Olvera St. and operated throughout the 1930’s. Casa Vega has recently reopened for take-out via advance order online or by telephone.

Casa Vega is now open from 12 Noon – 8 p.m. daily. Initially, guests can order directly by phone (818-788-4868) or online via the Casa Vega website. Guests can pick up from their cars – Casa Vega staff will place orders in the trunk or backseat as they wait in the restaurant’s driveway off Ventura Blvd.

Favorites on the take-out menu include Combination Plates and Street Tacos, both served with rice and beans, Taquitos de Juan (chicken flautas), Burritos, four different Family Trays, Chips, Guacamole, Salsa, Kids Meals, and more. In addition to beer and wine, Casa Vega offers its Classic Margarita in a single serving mason jar with ice, ready to drink for $7. Other margarita variations are available for $7-9. The Classic Margarita is also available in a half gallon size for $30.

“Over the years, Casa Vega has remained, at its core, much the same as my father’s original vision,” says Christy Vega. “The menu continues to reflect the offerings originally presented some 64 years ago with slight alterations that speak to today’s culinary tastes. From the menu, to the dim ambiance of the dining room, to the staff—many of which have been with our team for decades—Casa Vega is a testament to my father and the wonderful history he has created. I look forward to continuing to uphold his legacy of service, authentic traditions, and most of all, the love and adoration that emanates throughout every corner of the restaurant and inspires our clients to return time and time again.

Proprietress Christy Vega pours the Classic Margaritas for us.

The Monti Carlo of Everyday FoodLed by chef, author and restaurateur Marcus Samuelsson as national board co-chair, Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP,) celebrating its 30th Anniversary, transforms the lives of underserved high school students and young people locally by helping them pursue their culinary dreams. C-CAP prepares these talented young adults for college, and for careers in the restaurant and hospitality industry.

This year Los Angeles awarded $430,131 in scholarships to 34 deserving high school students. Joining us is Food TV’s Chef Monti Carlo (a “Friend of C-CAP”) and college scholarship recipients Emerson Majano, a member of the Senior Class at Santee Education Complex and Morena Hernandez, a distinguished Senior at Los Angeles High School.

Founded in 1990 by culinary educator and cookbook author Richard Grausman, C-CAP impacts over 17,500 students a year nationally. Countless C-CAP alumni work throughout the country and are guiding the future leaders of the culinary and hospitality industry.

Sommelier Ali CoyleNewport Beach’s highly praised, Fable & Spirit, has reopened in the Via Lido Plaza for takeout service. The public, once again, is able to partake in Chef Executive Chef David Shofner’s imaginative, globally inspired dishes. In addition, Sommelier Ali Coyle presents a curated list of wines offered at exceptional prices, and Director of Spirits Drew Coyle offers a selection of signature cocktails to go.

Guests will be able to order by phone or online Tuesday through Sunday. Menu, hours and online ordering will be updated on Fable & Spirit’s website. Orders may be placed between Noon and 6 p.m., for pick-up between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. The restaurant will be closed Monday. Contactless curbside pick-up can be requested when placing orders.

“Ours are neighborhood restaurants that have achieved success because of the communities that support them, and we are grateful to reopen to see the reassuring smiles of our friends during this time of uncertainty,” comments Darren Coyle, who owns Fable & Spirit, Dublin 4 Gastropub, and Wineworks for Everyone with his wife, Jean. “We look forward to when we can welcome guests into our dining room again for food, drink and good times, but for now, we will limit service to takeout and strive to share some of the spirit and magic of our family with yours.”

Sommelier & Coyle Family member, Ali, gently pulls the cork for us.

Ann Marie Verdi and Ted Hopson of the Bellwether“After honing his skills at some of the most influential restaurants in Southern California –including The Eveleigh, Father’s Office, and Umami Restaurant Group—Chef & Proprietor Ted Hopson now brings his diverse experience and curious palate to The Bellwether in Studio City, incorporating Italian, Mediterranean, and Middle Eastern flavors for a culinary spread that proudly crashes borders and challenges convention.”

His Partner at The Bellwether is Beverage Director Ann-Marie Verdi. At The Bellwether (in normal times,) Verdi creates a beverage program that pleases all palates through both contemporary and classic selections.

The Bellwether reopened briefly for nighttime curbside pick-up but found it impractical to sustain. Their focus has shifted to preparing wholesome meals for frontline workers and charity groups.

Chef Ted brings us up-to-date.

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 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.

On the surface 3rd party delivery services (Uber Eats, Grubhub, DoorDash and Postmates) seem really convenient but they are costly to both consumers and restaurants. A lot more here to explain and better understand. We’ll again, “Ask the Chef.”

Slapfish is hosting Doctors, Nurses, Medical Personnel, Police, Firefighters & EMT’s to a complimentary meal To-Go. Need to be in uniform or have appropriate ID to qualify. The participating Slapfish locations are Huntington Beach, Brea, Irvine and Laguna Beach.

Kids eat free at Slapfish, too, when their parents order Takeout.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Restaurateur Armen Karamardian, Zov’s Bistro & Bakery
Segment Three: Restaurateur Christy Vega, Casa Vega, Sherman Oaks
Segment Four: Chef Monti Carlo with C-CAP Scholarship Recipient Emerson Majano
Segment Five: Chef Monti Carlo with C-CAP Scholarship Recipient Morena Hernandez
Segment Six: Sommelier Ali Coyle, Fable & Spirit, Newport Beach
Segment Seven: Chef & Partner Ted Hopson, The Bellwether, Studio City
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish with “Ask the Chef”