Show 66, March 22, 2014: Executive Chef Brooke Williamson, Hudson House, The Tripel and soon, Playa Provisions

Brooke Williamson of Hudson House and TripelChef Brooke Williamson’s entire life has always been about food. With chef-husband Nick Roberts she now owns Hudson House in Redondo Beach and The Tripel in Playa Del Rey. Both are popular neighborhood spots. Soon to launch (April?) is their latest venture, Playa Provisions.

Playa Provisions on the beachfront is multiple concepts under one roof. Highlights are a seafood restaurant with primo patio and a whiskey bar with its own menu.

Chef Brooke has earned a Level 1 accreditation from The Court of Master Sommeliers.

Chef Brooke gained a national following on Bravo’s “Top Chef – Season 10” were she finished as a runner up. There is a strong rumor she will be part of Celebrity Cruises’ “Top Chef at Sea,” 7-day voyage to Alaska on August 15th out of Seattle.

She has a new series on MTV.

Play

March 22: Brooke Williamson, Selanne Steak Tavern, Grand Central Market, Eat LBC, Food Network 20th Anniversary, Blue Bottle Coffee

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Executive Chef Brooke Williamson, Hudson House, The Tripel and soon, Playa Provisions
Segment Three: Executive Chef Josh Severson, Selanne Steak Tavern
Segment Four: Kevin West, journalist, cookbook author, home preserving expert
Segment Five: Elizabeth Borsting and Terri Henry, Co-Producers, EAT LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week
Segment Six: Eric Boardman, Food & Travel TV Producer, On-Camera Host & Personality, and Writer
Segment Seven: David Wicker, Managing Partner and Vice President of Sales & Marketing, West Coast Prime Meats
Segment Eight: James Freeman, Founder & CEO, Blue Bottle Coffee

Chef Jet and Producer Andy preview the show.

Chef Brooke Williamson of Hudson House and The Tripel is back with us. Her latest venture, Playa Provisions, is about to debut. In Laguna Beach we’re checking in with Executive Chef Josh Severson at the booming Selanne Steak Tavern.

The Grand Central Market in Downtown Los Angeles is the grandfather of food halls in the area. Exciting things are going on there with the arrival of distinctive new food businesses. We’re continuing with our preview of EAT LBC, Long Beach’s first ever restaurant week set for March 30th through April 5th.

The Food Network celebrated its 20th Anniversary last year. That’s a lot of history. We’ll be talking about the early days of FN with one of their original show hosts.

Also on the menu is another information segment with our resident meat expert. We’ll discuss wet and dry aging and other meaty matters.

The hit of the just concluded Natural Products Expo West in Anaheim was a new cold-brewed coffee from Blue Bottle Coffee. The founder of Blue Bottle Coffee is with us to explain.

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

Brooke Williamson of Hudson House and TripelChef Brooke Williamson’s entire life has always been about food. With chef-husband Nick Roberts she now owns Hudson House in Redondo Beach and The Tripel in Playa Del Rey. Both are popular neighborhood spots. Soon to launch is their latest venture, Playa Provisions.

Chef Brooke has earned a Level 1 accreditation from The Court of Master Sommeliers.

Chef Brooke gained a national following on Bravo’s “Top Chef – Season 10” were she finished as a runner up. There is a strong rumor she will be part of Celebrity Cruises’ “Top Chef at Sea,” 7-day voyage to Alaska on August 15th out of Seattle.

Josh SeversonWe’re revisiting the new Selanne Steak Tavern in Laguna Beach. It’s less than a half-year old but is already attracting loyal repeat diners from the highly discriminating neighborhood. Our guest is Executive Chef Joshua Severson.

Chef Josh previously spent time with celebrity chef Tom Colicchio at CraftSteak in Las Vegas at The MGM Grand.

There is a lot more than juicy steaks on the Selanne Steak Tavern menu.

Kevin WestKevin West is a respected writer, cookbook author and hobbyist-turned professional-canner. His first cookbook (published last year) was, Saving the Season: a cook’s guide to home canning, pickling, and preserving.

He’s also part of the team suggesting the appealing new food enterprises at the historic Grand Central Market in Downtown Los Angeles, opened in 1917. Already there (and making an impression) are Valerie Confections, Horse Thief BBQ, G&B Coffee, Eggslut, DTLA Cheese, and Sticky Rice.

On the way are Wexler’s Deli, The Oyster Gourmet, Olio Pizzeria, and Berlin Currywurst. Also opening soon is Belcampo Meat Co., a full-service butcher shop featuring organic, grass-fed meats.

Eat LBC Long Beach Restaurant WeekOver 50 Long Beach restaurants are participating in EAT LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week, the city’s first-ever Restaurant Week. The dates are March 30th through April 5th.

Several prominent Long Beach neighborhoods are represented including Downtown, East Village, Downtown Waterfront, Belmont Shore, Belmont Heights, the PCH Corridor and East Anaheim/Zafaria District. In addition to their regular menu, each restaurant will offer a special three-course menu during Restaurant Week which includes an appetizer, entrée and dessert for $26 at casual eateries, and $38 at fine dining establishments. Tax and gratuity are additional.

Restaurants participate in restaurant weeks to persuade first-time guests to return. You see restaurants at their very best and the menus are value priced.

Co-producers Elizabeth Borsting and Terri Henry join us to preview Restaurant Week.

Clearly The Food Network which celebrated it’s 20th Anniversary last year has had a major influence on American popular opinion. They had to create a 2nd channel, “The Cooking Channel,” to accommodate all the potential sponsors who wanted to be represented. It’s now actually cool to talk about food and cook. Dudes share recipes…Chefs have become huge celebrities. Wolfgang Puck is better known World Wide than a lot of film and TV celebrities.

Eric BoardmanFood Network started modestly and with tight budgets. Our guest, Eric Boardman, was there in the early days. In 1999 he was the host of the popular series “Calling All Cooks.” The concept was the host going into the guest’s home kitchen where they make (with the series host) a recipe they are famous for in their immediate social circles, family or community. A lot were shot in Southern California but some exotic locations were used, too. The guests were talented home cooks.

West Coast Prime MeatsWest Coast Prime Meats really knows the meat business as only an insider can. Most of their seasoned, senior executives have an extensive background in the restaurant business or are master butchers. If fact West Coast’s key master butcher has more than 30 years experience in the field.

Dave Wicker, WCPM’s Vice President of Sales & Marketing and Managing Partner, is back with us to talk beef. We’ll talk about wet and dry aging and the cuts of steak. We’ll also weigh-in on whether having the bone-in on a steak adds moré flavor once it’s cooked.

James Freeman of Blue Bottle CoffeeBlue Bottle Coffee is a sensation for coffee lovers in San Francisco and New York. They are soon to arrive locally in Venice on Abbot Kinney Blvd. and in Culver City.

Blue Bottle Coffee was a big hit at the recently concluded Natural Products Expo West @ the Anaheim Convention Center. They were there to introduce their newest product, Cold Brewed New Orleans Iced Coffee packaged in a mini milk carton. It was one of the biggest hits at the show and the talk of the floor!

Founder and CEO James Freeman is with us to provide the background. He was actually at the show pouring samples!

Blue Bottle Coffee – New Orleans Iced Coffee. Blended with chicory, cane sugar & Clover Organic Milk.

“Near the beginning of the 19th Century, the French brought chicory-infused coffee to New Orleans. Two hundred years later we crafted our own organic, cold—brewed version for our farmers market stand, adding cane sugar and whole milk. We hope you enjoy it as much as we do.”

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Executive Chef Brooke Williamson, Hudson House, The Tripel and soon, Playa Provisions
Segment Three: Executive Chef Josh Severson, Selanne Steak Tavern
Segment Four: Kevin West, journalist, cookbook author, home preserving expert
Segment Five: Elizabeth Borsting and Terri Henry, Co-Producers, EAT LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week
Segment Six: Eric Boardman, Food & Travel TV Producer, On-Camera Host & Personality, and Writer
Segment Seven: David Wicker, Managing Partner and Vice President of Sales & Marketing, West Coast Prime Meats
Segment Eight: James Freeman, Founder & CEO, Blue Bottle Coffee

Show 29, May 18, 2013: Craig Strong, executive chef of Studio at Montage Laguna Beach

Chef Craig StrongFor the 3rd year Chef Craig, Studio, and Montage Laguna Beach are hosting the Orange County “Taste of the Nation” benefit for Share Our Strength. Share Our Strength’s national mission is hunger relief.

One hundred percent of the ticket revenue from June 2nd goes to local Orange County hunger relief organizations for programs. All expenses are covered by donations and sponsors. That’s highly unusual!

The event itself is an elaborate, walk-around tasting on the oceanfront bluff (with views of the Pacific) of Studio with food tasting stations from Studio and celebrity chefs from around the country. There are also premium wines served. Guests have the chance to really interact with the chefs and winemakers in a relaxed environment.

The impressive chef line-up includes Alan Wong from Alan Wong’s in Honolulu, Josiah Citrin of Melisse in Santa Monica, and Brooke Williamson of Hudson House in Redondo Beach, the 1st runner up on this season’s “Top Chef” series on Bravo.

Tickets in advance are $150, and the VIP Meet the Chef experience is $250.

Play

May 18: Sherry Yard, Craig Strong, Bill Esparza, Martin Blin, Marcus Samuelsson

Podcasts

Segment One: Pastry Chef Sherry Yard
Segment Two: Craig Strong, executive chef of Studio at Montage Laguna Beach
Segment Three: Bill Esparza, the “Mexican Food Maestro” and authority on the food of Baja California
Segment Four: Marius Blin, executive chef of Sofitel Los Angeles and president of Club Culinaire of Southern California
Segment Five: Pastry Chef Sherry Yard, Celebrity Chef discusses the new Helms Bakery
Segment Six: Marcus Samuelsson, chef / proprietor of Red Rooster and Ginny’s Supper Club in Harlem

Sherry YardSpecial treat for this Saturday’s show. Pastry princess Sherry Yard is guest hosting the “SoCal Restaurant Show.” She was Wolfgang Puck’s long-time pastry chef until departing after the Oscars this year to embark on a restaurant project of her own.

Sherry Yard is a multiple James Beard Award-winner for both the pastry arts as well as writing. These coveted medallions are the Oscars of the food world! Sherry was just in New York for the annual Beard Awards presented at Lincoln Center. Sherry will tell us what it’s like to be backstage and onstage in Manhattan during the Beard Awards.

Chef Craig StrongCraig Strong is the executive chef of Studio at Montage Laguna Beach. This is one of Orange County’s elite fine-dining destinations. It’s housed in its own architecturally distinctive building on the luscious grounds of Montage and the added bonus is the view of The Pacific.

On Sunday, June 3rd Chef Strong and his team are again hosting the annual Share Our Strength – Taste of the Nation benefit in Studio and the adjacent grounds. It’s a refined walk-around wine and food tasting afternoon with incredible tastes from some of the most high profile chefs in the country. Alan Wong from Alan Wong’s in Honolulu is one of the distinguished visiting chefs. Chef Alan cooks for the President at Alan Wong’s when he visits Honolulu. Also Chef Brooke Williamson of Hudson House in Redondo Beach. She was the runner- up in this season’s “Top Chef” series on Bravo!

Bill EsperanzaSaxophonist Bill Esparza has been dubbed the “Mexican Food Maestro.” As a hobby he’s developed an expertise (now a bustling 2nd career) in the foods of Baja California and the other culinary regions of Mexico. He leads escorted food tours there for journalists and food fans alike. He’s even given advice to Travel Channel’s Andrew Zimmern.

On Sunday, June 23rd he’s hosting LA Weekly’s Tacolandia Tacofest from Noon to 5:00 p.m. on the parking lot of the Hollywood Palladium.

33rd Annual Picnic de ChefsWhen a group of accomplished French chefs get together to cook guaranteed fun is always on the menu. The 33rd Annual Picnic des Chefs will be held on Sunday, June 2, 2013 at Vasa Park in Agoura Hills. This picnic is organized annually by the Club Culinaire of Southern California to benefit area charities.

On hand will be food tasting stations from 20 area restaurants complimented by premium wines from 20 wineries.

Chef Martin Blin the executive chef of Sofitel Los Angeles (across from the Beverly Center) and the President of the group joins us with all the appetizing details.

Back to our conversation with Sherry Yard.

Her new venture is the reimagined Helms Bakery (under construction) in partnership with Sang Yoon of Father’s Office and Lukshon. This will be on the site of the original Helms Bakery, an iconic food landmark and brand established in 1931 (with home delivery) which sadly closed in 1969.

Marcus Samuelsson and Andy Harris at a Taste of Harlem in Baldwin HillsMarcus Samuelsson of Red Rooster and Ginny’s Supper Club in Harlem really needs no introduction. Among his many achievements he orchestrated the menu for President Obama’s first State Dinner at the White House during his initial term.

His excellent memoirs, Yes, Chef, is now in paperback. It just earned a James Beard Award. It’s a must read for any young person contemplating a career in the culinary arts. Chef Marcus is brutally honest in recounting his achievements and failures on the lengthy path to the major success he now is.

Podcasts

Segment One: Pastry Chef Sherry Yard
Segment Two: Craig Strong, executive chef of Studio at Montage Laguna Beach
Segment Three: Bill Esparza, the “Mexican Food Maestro” and authority on the food of Baja California
Segment Four: Marius Blin, executive chef of Sofitel Los Angeles and president of Club Culinaire of Southern California
Segment Five: Pastry Chef Sherry Yard, Celebrity Chef discusses the new Helms Bakery
Segment Six: Marcus Samuelsson, chef / proprietor of Red Rooster and Ginny’s Supper Club in Harlem

Show 23, March 30, 2013: Chef Brooke Williamson of The Tripel in Playa del Rey and Hudson House in Redondo Beach

Brooke Williamson of Hudson House and TripelChef Brooke made all of SoCal proud on February 28th as she competed in the intense finale of “Top Chef-Seattle,” which was Season 10 for the popular series. This was a 2-part conclusion done before a live audience at Head Judge Tom Colicchio’s Craft in Century City.

When the smoke had cleared on her 5-course cookoff  Brooke came up as the runner-up which is still an incredible achievement! Every year the level of competition on “Top Chef” gets tougher and tougher.

Some of her “Top Chef” dishes will become new specials at Hudson House. The Tripel is a casual, neighborhood gastropub (30 seats) with 14 craft beer selections available on tap at any time and simpler, satisfying fare.

One of her earned perks is that Chef Brooke has just been added to “Top Chef: The Cruise” on the Celebrity Constellation sailing from Miami from April 11th to 15th with stops in Key West and Cozumel.

Play

March 30: Scott Slater, Graham Elliot, Brooke Williamson, Barbara Fairchild

Podcasts

Segment One: Chef Jet Tila
Segment Two: Executive Chef Brad Lyons and Erika DiProfio of Slater’s 50/50
Segment Three: Celebrity Chef Graham Elliot
Segment Four: Chef Brooke Williamson of The Tripel in Playa del Rey and Hudson House in Redondo Beach
Segment Five: Barbara Fairchild, former long-time editor of Bon Appetit magazine. Educator, speaker and hospitality industry consultant Part One
Segment Six: Barbara Fairchild, former long-time editor of Bon Appetit magazine. Educator, speaker and hospitality industry consultant Part Two

Easter and Passover greetings to all.

It’s a tasty buffet this week. We’re going from big juicy burgers and craft beer to dining with one of Chicago’s best celebrity chefs…From there it’s a conversation with our own, delightful, local “Top Chef” cheftestant. Finally it’s a trip to Venice and Rome for a sampling of their culinary delights!

Jet has been in Dallas all week so he’ll graciously share some of his dining adventures. Also, a bit of area restaurant news to report.

Scott Slater of Slater's 50/50We’re all on the quest for a great burger. So was Scott Slater when he teamed up with college buddy and chef Brad Lyons to launch the first Slater’s 50/50 in Anaheim Hills in 2009. Bacon is the key…

An impressive selection of craft beer (always changing) on tap is also a popular attraction. Since the success of Anaheim Hills busy locations have been added in Huntington Beach, San Diego, Pasadena and, most recently, Lake Forest.

On April 6th in Lake Forest Slater’s 50/50 will present the 1st Backyard Brewfest. It’s an outdoor tasting event with 15 different breweries and a sampling of Slater’s 50/50 most popular menu items. It’s a benefit for the Pediatric Children’s Research Foundation.

Graham ElliotCelebrity Chef Graham Elliot hails from Chicagoland where he has graham elliott, a well-known, Two-Star Michelin ranked restaurant. He’s perhaps more familiar to Angelenos as the sympathetic judge on Fox TV’s “MasterChef” series now in production on their 4th season.

On April 8th and 9th Chef Graham will be at W. Third Street’s Son of a Gun in Los Angeles cooking a 5-course tasting menu paired with regional wines selected by graham elliott sommelier, Jamie Kluz. Joining Chef Elliott in the kitchen will be Sous Chef John Slack and Director of Operations/Corporate Chef Merlin Verrier.

Brooke Williamson of Hudson House and TripelBrooke Williamson, the youthful co-owner of Hudson House in Redondo Beach and The Tripel in Playa del Rey represented Southern California masterfully in the just-concluded Season 10 of Bravo’s “Top Chef”. Brooke will talk to us about the two-part Season Finale which was shot in front of a live audience!

Chef Brooke has just been added to “Top Chef: The Cruise” aboard the Celebrity Constellation sailing from Miami with stops in Key West and Cozumel before returning to Miami. Those dates are April 11th to 15th.

Barbara FairchildOur International Travel Correspondent, Barbara Fairchild (former editor of Bon Appetit magazine and current hospitality consultant, teacher, speaker, and journalist), has just returned from Venice and Rome.

Barbara is going to reveal the dining highlights of her culinary journey in Rome and Venice. It’s perhaps the next best thing to actually having been there…

Barbara is on Facebook and Twitter.

Podcasts

Segment One: Chef Jet Tila
Segment Two: Executive Chef Brad Lyons and Erika DiProfio of Slater’s 50/50
Segment Three: Celebrity Chef Graham Elliot
Segment Four: Chef Brooke Williamson of The Tripel in Playa del Rey and Hudson House in Redondo Beach
Segment Five: Barbara Fairchild, former long-time editor of Bon Appetit magazine. Educator, speaker and hospitality industry consultant Part One
Segment Six: Barbara Fairchild, former long-time editor of Bon Appetit magazine. Educator, speaker and hospitality industry consultant Part Two

Show 4: October 27, 2012: Melting Pot Food Tours Part One

When it comes to entertaining and engaging food walking tours in Los Angeles no one does it better than Melting Pot Food Tours!

Thai Town MarketSisters and co-founders Lisa and Diane Scalia are L.A. natives and lifelong residents of Italian heritage who truly “live to eat.” Lisa, a caterer and private tour guide, and Diane, a professional chef (BarComida in Redondo Beach,) cookbook author, and food writer, together have over 25 years of combined experience in the hospitality business.

Current tours are Farmers Market – 3rd Street, Old Pasadena, and L.A. Latin Spice. It all started in 2008 with the Original Farmers Market Tour at Third & Fairfax in Los Angeles.
Melting Pot’s newest addition is Chef Jet Tila’s Flavors of Thai Town Tour. This is an incredible VIP experience all the way. When Travel Channel’s Tony Bourdain brought his “No Reservations” crew to Los Angeles he selected Chef Jet, the honorary Mayor of Thai Town, to guide him through the area. Since then visiting journalists and prominent chefs have prevailed upon Jet to escort them through Thai Town on the same trail. Now this enhanced, ultimate insider’s experience is available to a select group of savvy food tourists on a very limited basis.

Play

Show 4: October 27, 2012: Melting Pot Food Tours Part Two

When it comes to entertaining and engaging food walking tours in Los Angeles no one does it better than Melting Pot Food Tours!

Thai Town FoodSisters and co-founders Lisa and Diane Scalia are L.A. natives and lifelong residents of Italian heritage who truly “live to eat.” Lisa, a caterer and private tour guide, and Diane, a professional chef (BarComida in Redondo Beach,) cookbook author, and food writer, together have over 25 years of combined experience in the hospitality business.

Current tours are Farmers Market – 3rd Street, Old Pasadena, and L.A. Latin Spice. It all started in 2008 with the Original Farmers Market Tour at Third & Fairfax in Los Angeles.
Melting Pot’s newest addition is Chef Jet Tila’s Flavors of Thai Town Tour. This is an incredible VIP experience all the way. When Travel Channel’s Tony Bourdain brought his “No Reservations” crew to Los Angeles he selected Chef Jet, the honorary Mayor of Thai Town, to guide him through the area. Since then visiting journalists and prominent chefs have prevailed upon Jet to escort them through Thai Town on the same trail. Now this enhanced, ultimate insider’s experience is available to a select group of savvy food tourists on a very limited basis.

Play