Show 365, March 21, 2020: Chef / Proprietress Vanda Asapahu of Ayara Thai, Westchester Part One

Vanda Asapahu of Ayara Thai CuisineChef / Proprietress Vanda Asapahu of Ayara Thai in Westchester is the Host Chef for the upcoming 5th Anniversary Masters of Taste benefit at the Rose Bowl. Originally scheduled for Sunday, April 5th it has been necessarily postponed. When that new date is established Chef Vanda will be back with us with all the delectable details. In the meantime Ayara Thai is open for Take-Out and Delivery and would love to serve you.

“Growing up in a Thai-Chinese community in the Samsen District along the banks of Bangkok’s Chao Phraya River, chef and restaurateur Andy Asapahu received his cooking and business prowess by helping his mother cook. Not only did Grandma’s (Andy’s mother) large batches of food feed her family of eight, but also those in the neighborhood, who would stop by to purchase her well-known curries.”

Anna, wife of Andy and self-taught chef, hails from the city of Lampang in the heart of northern Thailand and grew up in a family that primarily cooked with home and locally-grown fruits and vegetables. Since Ayara Thai’s opening day, head chef Anna remains a leader in the kitchen and continues her family tradition bWestchestery using home-grown herbs in the restaurant’s dishes. Reflecting both the dishes she ate in the past, as well as her family’s values in sustainable dining, she ensures dishes inspired and prepared with only the freshest ingredients that the season has to offer.”

“Today, the family traditions of Andy and Anna are continued and developed into the third generation, through their daughter Vanda. Living and working in Thailand for four years has given Vanda the experience to revive old family recipes, while traveling through the nation’s different regions has allowed her to discover new tastes and inspirations. After cooking with relatives and eating her way through the streets and countryside, it is these old recipes and new flavors that Vanda brought back to share at Ayara Thai.”

Chef Vanda is our guest with all the tempting menu details.


Show 365, March 21, 2020: Chef / Proprietress Vanda Asapahu of Ayara Thai, Westchester Part Two

Vanda Asapahu of Ayara Thai CuisineWe’re continuing our interview with Chef / Proprietress Vanda Asapahu of Ayara Thai in Westchester who is the Host Chef for the upcoming 5th Anniversary Masters of Taste benefit at the Rose Bowl. Originally scheduled for Sunday, April 5th it has been necessarily postponed. When that new date is established Chef Vanda will be back with us with all the delectable details. It’s a wonderful, walk-around charity tasting event on the field of the iconic Rose Bowl.

In the meantime Ayara Thai is open for Take-Out and Delivery and would love to serve you. Think Laab Duck with roasted duck breast, lemongrass, sawtooth coriander, scallions, shallots, lime, roasted chili and toasted rice.

“With family recipes and cooking styles passed down through generations, the Asapahu family of Ayara Thai is pleased to offer a taste of authentic Thai food, where quality is never compromised. Using the freshest ingredients, each dish is prepared from scratch and enhanced individually by herbs and spices to ensure the boldest, most genuine flavors.”

Chef Vanda continues with all the tempting To-Go and Delivery menu details.



Show 330, June 29, 2019: Restaurateur Tim Foley on Georgia’s Cocktail Lounge, Redondo Beach

Tim Foley of Truxtons American Bistro and Georgias LoungeRestaurateur Tim Foley (Truxton’s Bistro) and partners have caringly overhauled a former dive bar in in Redondo Beach into a handsome, and welcoming, neighborhood cocktail lounge. The appealing result is Georgia’s Cocktail Lounge, featuring an accomplished bartending staff.

“Tim Foley, Jonathan Dahl, and Jocelyn Kaylene are thrilled to share their first concept, Georgia’s Cocktail Lounge. The eclectic tapas menu offers comforting bar bites as well as rich treats to satisfy those late-night munchies. The cocktail program features oldies but goodies as well as uniquely crafted cocktails all from fresh, local ingredients. Expect local craft beers and spirits to challenge the more adventurous drinkers.”

In the specialty cocktail realm look for the Grandma Georgia. It’s Wild Turkey rye, Laphroaig scotch whisky, coffee & bourbon-aged bitters, sugar cube, orange zest and Luxardo cherry.

An expanded food menu is in the works. Looking at a mid-July launch.

Partner Tim Foley is our spirited guest.


Show 330, June 29, 2019: Love & Salt with Proprietress Sylvie Gabriele

Sylvie Gabriele of Love and SaltLove and Salt is a restaurant story that begins with Cafe Pierre, a local classic restaurant birthed by Guy Gabriele in 1977 to bring a taste of France to Los Angeles’ South Bay. While Cafe Pierre was a beloved part of the community for nearly 37 years, in 2014, Guy and his daughter Sylvie Gabriele, now the owner of Love & Salt, closed the restaurant to bring new life to the iconic space with a revitalized look and Italian flair. As of last year a creative new chef (Chris Feldmeier ex- Moruno) is lighting the fire in the busy kitchen.

Think a Spring Peas & Squash Blossoms pizza from the wood-burning oven. It’s Tutti Frutti English peas, Shingai Farms squash blossoms, Meyer lemon and ricotta.

“Love & Salt is a philosophy: that food needs only two ingredients to be great. It’s a sensibility that informs the feeling in the restaurant and the dishes on the menu — Italian-inspired with Southern California soul. An approachable wine list and classic cocktail program similarly reflect the vibrant SoCal setting of the restaurant, located just steps from the Manhattan Beach Pier.”

“Love & Salt’s rustic menu is prepared simply with produce from local farms, and composed to encourage a fun and social meal with friends and family.”

We’ll get a tasty update from Proprietress Sylvie Gabriele.


Show 314, March 9, 2019: Restaurant 917 at Porsche Experience Center Los Angeles (Carson)

Matt LeeWith stunning views of the track at Porsche Experience Center Los Angeles, Restaurant 917’s sleek and modern setting echoes Porsche’s world class design aesthetic. The name and décor were inspired by the legendary 917 race car. The food and beverage is champion caliber, too. It’s located on the second floor to enhance the vistas.

Restaurant 917’s refined yet approachable seasonal menu is composed of ingredient-driven dishes that merge diverse flavors, inventive techniques and playful compositions.

A special fine-dining experience worthy of a special trip or serving as the perfect finish to an adrenaline-packed day, it is also an unforgettable venue for special celebrations and meetings.

Formerly the Executive Chef for the Restaurant at the Getty, Matt Lee has a quiet passion for culinary integrity and innovation. His exquisite eye for detail is evident in everything from his careful flavor composition to the stunning and playful visual presentation of each element on the plate. At 917, his facility with fresh, locally caught fish and other seafood complements his mastery of more traditional steak, chicken, and pork offerings, which he tends to balance with a bright vegetable accompaniment.

Oliver AlexandreOriginally from Nîmes, France, General Manager Oliver Alexandre holds dual MBA degrees in hospitality and tourism management as well as international hotel management, giving him a deep understanding of fine dining operations. Oliver brings a wealth of diverse experience to Restaurant 917 including an innate skill for hospitality and a passion for creating unique and memorable guest experiences.

Restaurant 917 offers Lunch on Tuesday through Saturday from 11:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and Dinner on Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 5 to 8:00 p.m.

Restaurant 917’s Executive Chef Matt Lee and General Manager Oliver Alexandre join us.


Show 309, February 2, 2019: El Segundo Brewing Co’s Rob Croxall and Thomas Kelley

Rob Croxall and Thomas KelleyWe’ve been enthusiastically following the El Segundo Brewing Co. in El Segundo since the beginning, and this year they will be celebrating their 8th Anniversary. A wonderful entrepreneurial success story. The craft beer from “Mayberry by the Sea” is now available all over California and also in Portland, Oregon.

They were one of the first craft breweries in the South Bay and are particularly known for their award-winning, hop-centric brews. Just opened a short walk from the brewery (and around the corner on Grand Avenue) is the family-friendly, ESBC The Slice and Pint.

It’s 18” hand-tossed or 8” x 12” pan pizza. Available by the slice, too. Also meatballs, baked garlic knots, wings, Calamari strips and salads. On opening night 170 hand-tossed pizzas were prepared, baked and served.

Expect a wide selection of 12 rotating ESBC’s styles available on tap.

“The Slice & Pint is locally focused and environmentally responsible. We partner with vendors who share the same values. We support local, independent farmers for our produce whenever possible. If we can make it in-house, we’re going to do that…simple as that.”

Proprietors Rob Croxall and Thomas Kelley tap the keg for us.


Show 50, November 30, 2013: David LeFevre, Executive Chef & Partner of MB Post and Fishing with Dynamite

Charlie TrotterRemembering Charlie Trotter.

Earlier in the month the food world lost Chef Charlie Trotter who was the first superstar celebrity chef in Chicago and influenced and mentored a network of prominent young chefs who now have their own high profile restaurants in Chicago and other key cities. Charlie Trotter’s (the restaurant) on W. Armitage was known to foodies around the world for his innovative tasting menus and brilliant wine cellar.

Our own David LeFevre, the executive chef & partner of both MB Post and Fishing with Dynamite in Manhattan Beach worked for Charlie over a period of ten years in a couple of stints. David joins us to share memories of the real Charlie Trotter. Fortunately his legacy will live on.

Three luscious tasting menus were available at Charlie Trotter’s. They changed each night. The choices were Vegetables, the Grand Tasting Menu and The Super Grand Tasting Menu showcasing 14 to 20 courses. It wasn’t just a meal…It was an experience.

Charlie’s goal (and it was sincere) was to exceed the diners’ expectations in every possible way!


Show 34, July 6, 2013: On the Town with Chef Jet, Sherry Yard, and Producer Andy

Everyone shared their 4th Of July celebrations.

Jet hosed an intimate backyard cookout. He has an incredible built-in brick grilling unit in his backyard that’s great for picnic entertaining.

Sherry YardSherry did some bike riding with her husband along the bike path in Manhattan Beach.

She also savored the beach view of all the fireworks festivities along the South Bay.

Producer Andy enjoyed the annual Community Celebration and Fireworks Spectacular in El Segundo (Mayberry by the Sea) in Recreation Park. It was a full day of festivities including a pie eating contest and a watermelon eating contest.

All the food booths were operated by El Segundo Community and school groups. The grilled hot dogs and hamburgers available before the fireworks show were prepared by the El Segundo Community & School Groups.

What’s a 4th of July without grilled hot dogs?  Congrats to fellow Californian, Joey “Jaws” Chestnut, winner for the 7th consecutive year of the Nathan’s Famous Coney Island Hot Dog Challenge. He set a new World Record of 69 hot dogs and buns consumed in 10 minutes!


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.


Show 5: November 10, 2012: Executive Chef David LeFevre of M.B. Post

In 2004 Chef LeFevre arrived in Los Angeles to assume the role of executive chef at Downtown L.A.’s landmark seafood fine dining restaurant, Water Grill. This highly-regarded establishment earned a Michelin star during his long tenure!

In 2009 Chef LeFevre went out on his own to open the more casual, M.B. Post, a social gathering spot, in Manhattan Beach. It’s been a big hit with the locals.

Unexpectedly his most popular item is their bacon cheddar buttermilk biscuits.

Saturday and Sunday brunch (with the lunch menu served thereafter) has been added along with weekday lunch on Fridays.