Wednesday, September 29, 2010

9/30-Steve Pelzer, Adam Carbonell, Jim Phillips, Kyle Bergman

What's Cookin - On Today's Show:
Live from The Lodge at Torrey Pines

Steve Pelzer-Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing
Perched upon the dramatic coastline of Southern California with a stunning backdrop of rugged cliffs, the rolling Pacific and soul-stirring sunsets; The Lodge at Torrey Pines® is located in La Jolla, one of the most sophisticated resort towns on the Southern California Coast. The hotel occupies six and one-half acres immediately adjacent to the 18th green of the famed Torrey Pines Golf Course, with holes three and four being the most picturesque. The Torrey Pines State Reserve, a beloved California State Park with beaches, golden cliffs and forests of Torrey pine - the rarest native pine in the U.S. - is but a short walk away. The Lodge is a 20-minute drive from downtown San Diego and the San Diego International Airport.

Adam Carbonell-San Diego Brewers Guild

The second annual San Diego Beer Week runs November 5th through 14th, 2010 and features a wide variety of events highlighting San Diego’s vibrant craft beer culture. Last year boasted nearly 300different events, and this year’s looking to be even better!
SDBW 2010 will feature beer dinners, festivals, rare bottle tastings, cheese pairings, brewery tours, classes, and more – there is truly something for everyone. 
The mission of the San Diego Brewer’s Guild is to promote awareness and increase the visibility of fresh, locally brewed beer through education and participation in community events.

To that end we are providing you, the discriminating beer lover, with a handy place to find info about our fresh local beers and the breweries that make them.
Executive Chef Jim Phillips of Barona Resort & Casino was recently honored with the coveted “Gold Medallion Award” for Chef of the Year by the California Restaurant Association (CRA), San Diego Chapter. The winners were selected by members of the chapter, which is comprised of the city’s top restaurant and hospitality professionals.

“I am extremely honored to be recognized by peers and industry leaders as this year’s chef of the year by our local California Restaurant Association chapter,” said Chef Phillips. “This award is especially meaningful to me at this point in my career. While working at Barona I’ve had the unique opportunity to help open new restaurants, manage several different dining venues at the same time and train our staff at the Culinary Institute. I’d like to thank my Barona team members for their support and the CRA for this distinguished award.”

The culinary veteran currently oversees over 400 Barona staff members including 12 chef de cuisines, 30 sous chefs and 220 cooks in addition to six award-winning restaurants, several casual eateries, as well as special events catering. While at Barona, he also played an instrumental role in the development of the menus and concepts of the resort’s Barona Steakhouse, Italian Cucina, El Rancho Grande and The Plaza restaurants.

“Each year we honor chefs that not only create an outstanding dining experience for guests, but also promote the core values of culinary excellence, leadership, professionalism and diversity,” said Fred Glick, president of the CRA San Diego. “Throughout Chef Jim’s long career in San Diego, he has continued to set the standard for our industry by impressing guests with his culinary creations, inspiring his large staff and providing support to numerous local charities and organizations. We appreciate everything he has done and continues to do for San Diego’s culinary scene.”

In addition, Chef Phillips manages the Barona Culinary Institute, a certified on-site demonstration kitchen, accredited culinary school and private dining room located within the resort’s main casino. The program is American Culinary Federation Apprenticeship certified according to California and Federal labor guidelines and is directly associated with the local-state accredited Grossmont College and can be continued toward further education including an associate degree.

Chef Phillips is the Apprentice Chair on the
 American Culinary Federation Chefs and Culinarians of San Diego. Currently, he serves as treasurer of Chef Celebration, a non-profit organization that provides scholarships for local rising culinary talent and has been a member of the organization since its inception in 1995. Together, Chef Phillips and Barona have maintained a presence in the community volunteering in events and organizations such as the Recipe for a Cure, Taste of the Triangle, Taste of the Nation, St. Madeline’s, Alpine Wine Festival, Wine and Roses, San Diego Zoo Celebration of the Critters, CRA Golf Tournament, Promises 2 Kids, Epilepsy Foundation, December Nights and numerous others.
About Barona Resort & Casino

Barona Resort & Casino blends the best of San Diego’s leading resorts with the gaming excitement of Las Vegas.LEED-EB™ Gold Certified by the U.S. Green Building Council, Barona is San Diego’s leading destination resort featuring 400 guest rooms and suites all with beautiful views of the Barona Valley, a variety of award-winning dining options, the AmBience Day Spa, a full-service events center and the 18-hole championship Barona Creek Golf Club, rated the 3rd best resort course in California by Golfweek magazine.
San Diego has been identified as the epicenter for beer culture and tourism. In the World Beer Cup 2010, San Diego as a city took home more awards than countries like England, Germany, and Belgium combined. The Grill at Torrey Pines is proud to present special Brewers’ Dinners that take place the last Wednesday of each month, at The Lodge at Torrey Pines®.

The Grill, members of the San Diego Brewers Guild, will partner with local breweries each month for a four-course dinner event. Highlighting the superiority and creativity of craft beer in San Diego, these Brewers’ Dinners combine food and beer in a social atmosphere set on The Grill patio, overlooking the famed Torrey Pines Golf Course.

Guests have the opportunity to make new acquaintances as well as meet Chef Kyle Bergman of The Grill and the guest brewer to discuss the evening’s menu items and specialty beers. Many of the brews served at our beer pairing dinners are very rare finds - not available in stores or other restaurants - making this event a must for beer and food enthusiasts alike.

At $55 per person, The Grill’s monthly Brewers’ Dinners includes the special craft beers, dinner, and valet parking. These Brewers’ Dinners are offered in addition to the standard evening menus at The Lodge’s restaurants, A. R. Valentien and The Grill. To review the upcoming menu and schedule for future culinary events, visit

The Lodge at Torrey Pines embodies the pinnacle of Pacific coastal living. Designed in the tradition of architects Charles and Henry Greene, The Lodge is a loving homage of California Craftsman architecture, emphasizing authentic materials and style, respect for the natural landscape, and integration of indoor and outdoor living. 

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

9/29- Bonnie Sherman,

What's Cookin - On Today's Show:

Bonnie Sherman – Travel Agent/Expert
Will talk about how travel and good food go hand and hand.  Trends of travel and hotel restaurants are increasingly using celebrity chefs to attract diners. 

A native of Chicago, Bonnie and her husband and business partner, Ron Sherman, have lived in San Diego for more than 15 years. Bonnie's work in the travel industry began in college when she worked at the front desk and in reservations at a Hyatt hotel. Following college, she worked as a teacher in Glenview, Illinois.
Since becoming a full-time travel agent in 1992, Bonnie completed expert programs for the Netherlands, Switzerland, and the Bahamas. She has traveled to many destinations on professional educational trips. Bonnie supports the need for professional credentials and completed the Certified Travel Consultant advanced program to earn her CTC designation.
Bonnie and Ron have taken at least two cruises a year for the past 34 years. Some of her favorite trips have been to the Champagne region of France, visiting Thailand and experiencing the Eastern & Orient Express rail journey, and cruising on small ships with friends.
Bonnie is pleased to be affiliated with Protravel International, one of the top 25 agencies in the country. Protravel's stellar reputation and clout combined with membership in Virtuoso, the world's most prestigious travel consortium, enable Bonnie to arrange truly remarkable dream vacations for her customers.

Kristine Kidd –Cookbook Spokesperson for Williams and Sonoma’s new book “Cooking at Home” by Chuck Williams and Food Editor at Bon Appetit  for 20 years

Kristine Kidd worked as the Food Editor of Bon Appetit magazine for 20 years. She was responsible for filling its pages with delicious, modern recipes, and was the resident food trends expert. She collaborated with many celebrity chefs such as José Andrés, Thomas Keller, Suzanne Goin, Wolfgang Puck, and Gordon Ramsay, and numerous notable food writers like Nigella Lawson, Joyce Goldstein, Giada De Laurentiis, and Bruce Aidells, helping them shape stories for the magazine. The dishes she created were often on the cover, and her feature stories were so popular, the recipes are republished in the Bon Appetit cookbooks.
Kristine is speaks regularly at national food conferences, including those put on by the International Association of Culinary Professionals, and the Food Writers’ Symposium. She has been a guest on many radio shows, and has appeared on TV food shows, including The Next Food Network Star, Home Cooking with Amy Coleman, The Home Show, and The Main Ingredient.

Monday, September 27, 2010

9/28-Mark Degnan, Lou Diamond Phillips

What's Cookin - On Today's Show:

Mark Degnan-Director OF Local Marketing and Advertising and Training for Chevrolet
He will talk about why Chevrolet wants to honor men and women and discuss contest details of how to nominate someone. Chevrolet and Country Music have teamed  up to salute America’s men and women in uniform.

As an extension of the GM Military Discount program, Chevrolet is launching a year-long campaign to raise $1 million to support Cell Phones for Soldiers.

To reach that goal, Chevrolet is calling on GM employees, NASCAR fans, and Chevrolet dealers across the country to donate unwanted, gently used cell phones for recycling. Proceeds will be used to provide pre-paid calling cards to troops serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.

"We feel Cell Phones for Soldiers is a worthy cause that fits well with GM's long-standing commitment to support the men and women serving our country," said Mark Degnan, GM director of Local Advertising, Marketing and Training. "Personally, with a brother and a nephew in active duty in Iraq, I know how important every call home can be for soldiers overseas, and their families at home."

Cell Phones for Soldiers was founded in 2004 by brother and sister Robbie and Brittany Bergquist. To date, they have provided more than 60 million minutes of free calling cards through a national network of individual and corporate supporters.

Cell Phones for Soldiers recently announced a new campaign to offer free cell phones to armed forces returning from service in Iraq and Afghanistan. Returning troops can receive a refurbished phone, preloaded with a month's worth of calling time, to help them restart their lives after active duty.

Lou Diamond Phillips-  Actor, Fighter pilot Colonel Telford in Stargate Universal

A former X-302 pilot, Col. Telford was selected to head the team to take the first trip through the Stargate using the ninth chevron. His strong will and confidence have served him well in his lifelong military career.

Lou Diamond Phillips (born Lou Diamond Upchurch; February 17, 1962) is an Americanfilm, television, and stage actor. He earned a supporting actor Golden Globe Award nomination for his role in Stand and Deliver and a Tony Award nomination for his role in The King and I.
Outside of acting, he has become notable for finishing 186th in the the 2009 World Series of Poker World Championships No Limit Texas hold 'em main event.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

9/23 - Paul & Mira Sorvino,

Nicole Chiu - "The Apprentice"  -"First Firee"
Nicole, 27 (Palos Verdes, California), graduated cum laude from the University of California, Irvine. She received her J.D. from Loyola Law School while holding the title of Miss Los Angeles, and placing 4th runner-up at the Miss California USA 2008 Pageant (part of the Miss USA Pageant). Determined to use her brains and beauty, Nicole left her law firm job, where she was miserable as an attorney, to prove that the recession can't stop her from pursuing her dreams.

Paul and Mira Sorvino   "Diabetes Co-Stars"
Actors and father-daughter team, Paul and Mira Sorvino, have partnered with sanofi-aventis U.S. to create “Diabetes Co-Stars,” a new program designed not only to encourage people living with diabetes to inform themselves about diabetes treatments

Paul Anthony Sorvino (born April 13, 1939) is an American actor. He is the father of actress Mira Sorvino. He often portrays authority figures on both sides of the law, and is possibly best known for his roles as Paulie Cicero in the film Goodfellas and Sgt. Phil Cerreta on the TV series Law & Order

Mira Katherine Sorvino (born September 28, 1967) is an American actress. She won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in Mighty Aphrodite (1995) and is also known for her role as Romy White in "Romy and Michele's High School Reunion".

Nationally Known Chef and Entertaining Expert Maureen Petrosky

Grocery Shopping 101: Shop Like A Pro

Weekly Meal Planning : How To Plan Your Week

Lunch-It’s in the Bag: Quick, Easy and Tasty Ideas

What’s for Dinner?: Delicious Foods and Recipe Ideas

Snacking and Desserts: Simple and Satisfying Solutions

Beverages and Drinks: Something to satisfy everyone’s thirst

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

9/22 - Allen Balik, Wolfgang Puck, Waylynn Lucas,

Allen R. Balik - Club Essence
Club Essence unlocks the door to a unique insider's world of wine country adventures, speakers, gifts, wine education and much more for businesses and individuals alike. Wine is all about pleasure. And this pleasure continues to expand in depth and breadth as your knowledge grows. Wine involves all of your senses, just pop a cork, pour a glass and delight in wine's splendor.
•Appreciate the color
•Enrich your experience with the bouquet
•Clink glasses in a joyful toast with a friend
•Immerse yourself in the flavors
•Delight in the sensory feel in your mouth leading to an everlasting memory
At Club Essence it is our goal to make the whole wine experience more enjoyable and exciting while enhancing the meeting or meal. Everyone knows wine and most everyone enjoys drinking it. Why not use this familiarity with wine to offer an interesting change of pace? A wine related event encourages discussion, friendship and relaxation while offering a new and unexpected experience. Make yourself shine and show your friends and clients how to enjoy life's greatest pleasures through wine.

Wolfgang Puck -  "28th American Wine & Food Festival"
Saturday, September 25 2010, 5-11 PM          
*5:00 PM Wolfgang Puck VIP Cooking Demonstration
6:00 PM Festival Opens
Location: Universal Studios Backlot, 3900 Lankersheim Blvd Universal City, CA
Staged against the backdrop of movie sets, the signature Saturday night event returns, once again, to Universal Studios Backlot. As dusk falls, a spectacularly lit movie set provides the stage for a culinary scene like none other: An unrivaled epicurean feast prepared by world-renowned chefs, superb libations including fine wines and smooth spirits, and a silent auction filled with luxury items - all set to the sounds of live bands. Cap the night off in “Sherry Yard’s Sweet Sanctuary Champagne and Port Lounge” – an after-hours retreat. Kick back in cozy niches under the stars or dance the night away to a live band.

Waylynn Lucas  Pastry Chef  - SLS Hotel & The Bazaar
A story in contrasts, the dining rooms of Rojo y Blanca mix tradition and ingenuity in true Spanish style, offering a wide selection of small plates for sharing. Root yourself in the regional cuisines of Spain, including everything from traditional tapas to a Jamón y Queso bar. Venture into chef Andrés' fruit and vegetable filled fantasy, where dramatic dishes feature a decidedly modern twist on farm fresh produce. The restaurant's décor also suits a variety of moods, including intimate seating areas, ranging from ethereal woods and whites to deep reds and dark walls, long food bars to observe chefs as they create and compose, and an airy outdoor terrace that recalls a Mediterranean café.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Chef Sam Talbot    -  "Pears"
SINCE HIS DEBUT ON TOP CHEF, TALBOT HAS OPENED HIS OWN WORLD-CLASS RESTAURANT IN NEW YORK CITY.HE’S BEEN VOTED ONE OF THE MOST HANDSOME MEN IN NEW YORK. AND HE’S REVEALED TO THE WORLD THAT HE HAS TYPE ONE DIABETES. WE’RE EXCITED TO HAVE CELEBRITY CHEF SAM TALBOT JOINING US TODAY FROM THE DOMAINE SERENE VINEYARD IN OREGON.  At the forefront of the 'integrative kitchen', which breaks down the walls between the way we eat and the way we live, Sam is today one of America's most original chefs. What is the food? Who's eating it? Where? When? In what circumstances? Sam's approach to cooking is to understand how all these questions - and their answers - interconnect. His approach to life is the same: Sam surfs, snowboards, practices yoga, travels widely, moves easily among the worlds of fashion, entertainment, sports, and celebrity. Diagnosed at a young age with juvenile diabetes, Sam lives every hour with a profound understanding of the impact of food on life and life on food. That understanding has become a uniquely creative driving force for his cooking style and recipes. A native of Charlotte, North Carolina, Sam began his culinary training at Johnson and Wales University in Charleston. During his schooling, Sam worked at the acclaimed J. Bistro in Charleston where he worked under chef /owner James Burns. Sam still considers Burns his mentor and returns frequently to Charleston to cook, fish, and refresh his culinary "juices."  At 24, Sam moved to New York City as Executive Chef of the Black Duck Restaurant in the City's legendary Gramercy Park neighborhood. Two years later, he opened his own restaurant, the Williamsburgh Cafe in Brooklyn's trendiest locale; he was nominated for Best New Chef in Brooklyn by CitySearch and Best Restaurant in Brooklyn by the New York Post.  Sam's inventive dishes have been praised by The New York Times, New York Magazine, the Daily News, the New York Post, Zink Magazine, Time Out New York and Forbes Magazine. He has traveled the world exploring his culinary passions and expanding his culinary vision, cooking and eating in some of the world's best restaurants - and some of the worst. His travels have included a 28-day stint in Paris finding work as a chef wherever he could and a 2006 journey across the U.S. stopping at local favorites in small towns. Wherever he goes, Sam's cooking is always a reflection of his insistence on fresh, healthy ingredients. That is part and parcel of who he is as a diabetic - one who also volunteers extensively with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and who uses his newfound celebrity to increase awareness of the disease and to raise money to fight it. Unique even among celebrity chefs, Sam brings to his kitchen his deep love of nature, keen sense of taste, creative mind, and intrinsic understanding of the relationship between food and health. His is the quintessential 'integrative kitchen  In the summer of 2008, Sam joined the brand hew hotel and restaurant The Surf Lodge in Montauk, NY as Executive Chef and created a menu of locally-sourced, market-driven seafood. The restaurant is currently the most buzzed about culinary destination on the east end with features in Time Out New York, the New York Times, People magazine, and more. In early 2010, Sam will helm the culinary team at the Morgan's Hotel Group's latest property, the Mondrian Soho.

The President of the Sun Valley Area is supposed to be there tomorrow with a few members. His name is Ted Bradpiece.

Monday, September 20, 2010

9/20 - Adam Fuleky, Bill Smitrovich,

 Adam Fuleky -  Ketcham Estate
Unlike so many "great" ideas that come about when fueled by alcohol, the idea to start a winery was not one Mark Ketcham and Steve Rigisich regretted the next day. It involved no high speed chases, sobriety tests, nor did we even get arrested, so we figured we were off to a helluva good start.  Truth be told, it was several years and many cases of wine later that Mark and Steve decided that they would throw in together and take the Pinot Noir grapes from Mark's vineyard in Healdsburg and start a winery. Since we weren't smart enough to come up with a clever name for our winery like, 'Tulips on the Trouser', 'Hair of the Frog', or the like, we settled on Ketcham Estate. Clever, eh?

Bill Smitrovich stars as Vice President Raymond Jarvis, the steely but tactful right hand to President Elias Martinez (Blair Underwood), in NBC's new high-octane thriller The Event.  Born in Connecticut, Smitrovich began his professional acting career with Arthur Miller in the world premiere of Miller's "The American Clock" at the Spoleto Festival. After obtaining a Master of Fine Arts degree from Smith College in 1976, the former University of Massachusetts acting teacher earned his first big break in a "baptism of fire" appearance as understudy for the lead role (and all male roles) in the world premiere of "The American Clock" at Spoleto. Subsequently, Smitrovich and the production went on to Broadway, where it ran a record 13 performances.  Stage parts followed off-Broadway and in the Hong Kong (International Arts Festival) Actors Theatre of Louisville's production of "Of Mice and Men." Other stage credits include "Food from Trash," "Requiem for a Heavyweight," "Far East," and "Frankie & Johnny at the Claire de Lune." Smitrovich was a founding member of the No Theatre Company of Northampton, Massachusetts, now in association with the Wooster Group, whose members included Willem Dafoe and the late Spalding Gray. Most recently Smitrovich was in Caryl Churchill's "A Number" at the ACT in San Francisco, where it won Best Play of 2007.   Smitrovich gained recognition for his portrayal of Drew Thacher, a family man and father of a Down syndrome son in the critically acclaimed and award-winning dramatic series "Life Goes On." In addition, Smitrovich was a proud member of the all-star cast of the live television version of George Clooney's production of "Fail Safe."  Smitrovich has appeared in over 30 feature films, including "Independence Day," "Ghosts of Mississippi," "Iron Man," "Nick of Time" with Johnny Depp, "Air Force One," "Thirteen Days," "Seven Pounds," and most recently his second film with Johnny Depp, an homage to Hunter S. Thompson's novel, "The Rum Diary," due for a September 2010 release.  Smitrovich's many supporting and starring television roles include cigar-chomping Inspector Cramer in "Nero Wolfe Mysteries," D.A. Kenneth Walsh in "The Practice," Agent Olcyk in "Without a Trace," Lt. Bob Bletcher in "Millennium," "Fat Actress" as Cry-Baby McGuire, and with Annette Bening in HBO's "Mrs. Harris." Smitrovich remains an active SAG Hollywood Board Member, a National Chair of the Senior Performers Committee, and is presently on the SAG Foundation Golf Committee for the SAG Foundation Inaugural Golf Classic to be held at Lakeside Golf Course in Toluca Lake, California on August 16, 2010. The event will benefit catastrophic health care for needy members of the Screen Actors Guild. He is extremely proud of his relationship with the U.S. military, especially Air Space Command, and all the courageous men and women who protect and serve the U.S. Smitrovich is currently working on depicting Teddy Roosevelt in a one-man show for "Meeting of the Minds." Smitrovich now resides in Woodland Hills, California, with his wife Shaw Purnell. They have two children, son A.J. and daughter Maya.

Friday, September 17, 2010

9/17 - Carly Pope, Marc Silverstein,

Carly Pope - "Lucinda Pearl"   "Outlaw" 
On NBC's "Outlaw," Carly Pope plays Lucinda Pearl, a wildly unorthodox private investigator who uses her sex appeal and wit to gather information for Cyrus Garza (Jimmy Smits).  Pope has recurred on critically acclaimed television shows such as "24," "Dirt," and "Californication." On the feature film side, Pope recently wrapped the sequel to "SWAT" opposite Gabriel Macht. She can also be seen in "Textuality" as the lead opposite Eric McCormack. Prior to that, she starred in the controversial Toronto International Film Festival favorite "Young People F****." Many also remember Pope opposite Al Pacino and Matthew McConaughey in "Two for the Money," and alongside Colin Hanks and Jack Black in "Orange County."  Pope got an early start in her hometown of Vancouver, British Columbia, with various television and film work before landing the plum role of Sam on the series "Popular," which aired for two years, launching her career.  After "Popular" was cancelled, Pope returned to Vancouver where she continued to win new fans and impress industry insiders and the media with her insightful and sensitive portrayals. Pope is a Leo Award winner for her work on the series "The Collector."

Marc Silvestein - Food Expert
 Food Host & Entertaining Expert Marc Silverstein will share Ideas for Delicious Fare to Kick Off the Football Season! Football Season is here and that means it’s time to huddle up with friends and family and enjoy appetizing food and drinks with all of your favorite games. Food Network host Marc Silverstein will show you how to throw a tailgating party like the pros, keeping in mind the importance of healthy additions that are full of flavor, taste and appeal. He’ll have delicious and easy-to- make appetizers, a main course and dessert ideas that’ll score a touchdown with all your gridiron enthusiasts. From mouth watering h’ors d’oeuvres to scrumptious dips and entrees, these specialties are sure to please, without piling on the calories. Marc Silverstein will show viewers: • Game Day Nosh: ready-to-serve options that are good for you too

Steve Evans - The Movie Guy
Tips on the best & worst this weekend at the Box Office. Steve reviews and comments on all the latest from Hollywood and gets the story behind the film.A veteran of the industry, "The Movie Guy" says exactly how he feels about the movies that you will be watching this weekend. Mike Horn comments on the lineup of big screen offerings but does not always agree with what Steve has to say. This is the movie review program to listen to every week and get the "real deal".

Thursday, September 16, 2010

9/16 - Charlie & Kathleen Schaffer, Aaron McCargo

Charlie & Kathleen Schaffer - Catering Team
Charlie, originally from Jackson, Mississippi, got into the kitchen to make money as a bus boy. He was asked one day to help with cooking and his career started with some interruptions along the way. He attended college, then moved to Colorado, cooking all the while. During a back-packing trip to Europe his eyes were opened to the European perspective on food. He returned and completed his education in Charleston, South Carolina, where he continued cooking after class at Slightly North of Broad for Chef Frank Lee. Having caught the travel bug, the chef spent 2 years living and moving around South America. “The best food is in Peru. Great ceviche. They make it in the morning, it marinates a couple of hours and they are sold out by early afternoon,” he said. He supported himself with cooking jobs here and there and learned Spanish. He still uses it. “We have several Spanish speaking staff. I was even featured on Univision’s morning show a few years ago!” he said.  Back in the U.S. Chef Charlie entered the Culinary Institute of America, (CIA) in New York. “The CIA instilled a much higher level of professionalism and pride in my work. It was nice to be able to remove the pressure of restaurant service and consider why we cook foods the way we do.”

Aaron McCargo, Jr  "'Great American Dine Out'"
"I'm Aaron McCargo Jr., from Food Network's "Big Daddy's House" and the Great American Dine Out's official spokesperson. I want you to join me in dining out at every Great American Dine Out restaurant you can find, from September 19 to 25. The more we dine out that week, the more money we'll help raise for Share Our Strength. Thousands of restaurants of all kinds are offering great promotions, featuring special dishes, and donating part of their proceeds from that week to help support Share Our Strength's work to end childhood hunger in this country. There's a sampling of what some restaurants are doing at the right.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

9/15 - Deborah Krasner, Sandy Levine,

 Deborah Krasner - "Meat: Sourcing and Cooking Sustainable Meat"
Eating meat doesn’t have to be politically incorrect. In fact, it can actually improve your health, protect our environment and strengthen our farm communities. And, according to award-winning author Deborah Krasner, it tastes good, too. The meat Krasner is referring to is the grass-fed, sustainably farmed and humanely raised products increasingly available from local producers. In her new book, Good Meat: The Complete Guide to Sourcing and Cooking Sustainable Meat, Krasner provides the meat-eater’s equivalent to the Whole Earth Catalog—a complete and comprehensive guide to sourcing, preparing and enjoying sustainably raised beef, lamb, pork, rabbit, poultry, and eggs.  While the 200 recipes and dozens of beautiful color photographs delight the senses, the real meat of this book (pun intended) is its encyclopedic breadth and depth: Krasner argues persuasively against the “industrial” meat found in most supermarkets and chain restaurants, and sets forth a compelling case why sustainably farmed meat can actually lower cholesterol, enhance the environment, empower farmers and sustain the community supported agriculture (CSA) movement.  Krasner is a well known Vermont-based food writer and James Beard Award-winner who approaches her topic with a combination of intellectual rigor and culinary passion. Good Meat is most definitely not another cookbook; it is part how-to guide, part environmental manifesto, part textbook, and mostly a celebratory exploration of the benefits and virtues of responsible meat-eating.

Sandy Levine -  GM  - "Carnegie Deli"   NYC 
Founded in 1937, the world famous Carnegie Deli is a true New York City landmark situated in Midtown on 7th Avenue at 55th Street. We also have locations in the Mirage Hotel in Las Vegas, Foxwoods Casino in Connecticut, Six Flags in New Jersey and at The Sands Casino in Bethlehem, PA. All of our meats are smoked and cured in our own plant. We are family owned and operated and also bake our world famous cheesecake and desserts here. Our walls of fame are filled with pictures of celebrities, dignitaries, athletes, out-of-towners and our most important customer, you! We are known for our pastrami, corned beef, brisket and many other sandwiches, including our famous "Broadway Danny Rose." All of our gargantuan sandwiches are overstuffed with at least one pound of meat. We also specialize in old world favorites such as: knishes, matzoh ball soup, stuffed cabbage, and of course our pickles.)

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

9/14 - Bobby Flay, Lori Loughlin, Geoff Edwards, Sandy Tauson,

Bobby Flay / Lori Loughlin   "Back to School"
Celebrity Chef Bobby Flay and actress/celebrity mom Lori Loughlin (90210, Full House). They have advice for moms on how they can get kids to eat real during the hectic school season. Together they will offer tips and recipes the whole family can enjoy together. They will also let you viewers know how they can help raise money for Share Our Strength, an organization committed to ending childhood hunger in America.

CRN listeners can log on to Hellman's Facebook page and participate in the "Sandwich Swap "n" Share" program, a virtual take on the beloved school ritual of swapping sandwiches. When listeners make a virtual sandwich and share it with a friend, Hellman's will make a donation to Share Our Strength. Of course Lori can also discuss the latest from her acting career and the upcoming 90210 season

Geoff Edwards -  "On a Cruise"
Geoff Edwards is a veteran radio and television broadcaster. He has an Emmy for best talk show host, and an Emmy nomination for best Game Show Host. Besides hosting network game shows, he has appeared as an actor in numerous television shows and movies. In radio, he was top rated in Los Angeles on both KMPC and KFI. With all of this, Geoff never lost his thirst for travel. He has been cruising since 1969 and has twice cruised around the world. From Morocco, to the Marshall Islands, and even to Branson, Geoff 's wit adds a special flavor to his travel commentary. Michael, Geoff's wife, travels with him and records all on film. Today, Geoff writes for several national magazines, currently broadcasts a weekly travel report to Monterey's KION morning show, and does on "location" special travel broadcasts for CRN.

Exec Chef Sandy Tuason (Twass-on)  Mauna Lani Bay Hotel
As Loveley as I Remembered"  It had been over ten years since my last visit to the Mauna Lani Bay.... but the hotel looks as fresh and beautiful as my very first visit in the early 1990's. The ambiance is quiet, elegant and very Hawaiian---and the rooms are lovely after a very recent renovation. I was a bit worried that the hotel might be showing signs of age---but I found the public rooms, gardens and grounds to be perfectly maintained---I was very impressed. In the past years I have stayed at the Four Seasons resorts in Hawaii....but will now add the Mauna Lani Bay on the list for a most relaxing and authentic Hawaiian escape. Don't miss the outdoor massage at the Spa. "What a joy to be able to return to paradise at the Mauna Lani Bay Hotel  and rejuvenate our spirits along with our bodies in the beautiful water and on the best beach in Hawaii! Our favorite place to have lunch and a casual dinner is the Ocean Grill, strategically set between the pool area and the sand, overlooking the sparkling blue ocean. The manager, Michael, is always welcoming you, even if you are smothered in towels, fresh in from swimming!

Monday, September 13, 2010

9/13 - Steve Andrews, Sally James, Leslie Gailerne Smith, William Seppi,

 Steve Andrews / Sally James - "Slow Living Radio"
Co-hosted by travel industry veteran Stephen Andrews, international award-winning Australian chef/author Sally James, and European-trained sommelier Scott Lewis, Slow Living Radio explores our world from its back streets to its main thoroughfare to discover the very best that a slower, more mindful and relaxed lifestyle has to offer. While the subject matter remains focused, a dose of jovial barbs, anecdotes and occasional limericks traded by the three co-hosts keeps a fun and lively tenor to the show. So what do this American, Australian and Irishman have in common? A taste for humor, a gift for the gab, and a sincere shared passion for the great life! “Modern life has us over-wired, over-connected and overcommitted. Our message is simple – it’s time to get back to real life. To slow down, become more mindful of yourself, your experiences, of the world and those around you… and enjoy life while you’re at it,” says Stephen Andrews, program producer and co-host.

Leslie Gailerene Smith - "LA County Fair"
The inaugural 'Los Angeles County Fair', now known as the L.A. County Fair, opened Oct. 17, 1922, and ran for five days through October 21, 1922, in a former beet field in Pomona, California. Highlights of the Fair’s first year were harness racing, chariot races and an airplane wing-walking exhibition.Now in its 87th year, the Fair is the largest county fair in the U.S. Fair attendance has topped one million people in every year but one since 1948. Since its inception, the Fair has been the link between California’s agriculture industry and the public, providing a community gathering place where people learn about California’s heritage and enjoy traditional Fair food, activities and entertainment. In recent years the fair has moved away from such agricultural heritage by abandoning livestock competitions for area growers and ranchers in favor of hired petting zoos. In addition to the 13-acre (53,000 m2) Ray Cammack Shows carnival the Fair has an operational farm, an outdoor miniature garden railroad, California’s Heritage Square historical exhibit and America’s Kids-Education Expo, where school children discover A Day Full of Learning Cleverly Disguised as Fun. The End of Summer Concert Series features 19 nights of first-run musical entertainment, demolition derby and freestyle motocross. The Fair is operated by the Los Angeles County Fair Association, a not-for-profit 501 corporation. The Fair is held each September on 543 acres (2.20 km2) of fairgrounds known as Fairplex (L.A. County Fair, hotel and exposition complex). The Fair generates a national economic impact of more than $250 million, roughly the equivalent of hosting a Super Bowl every year. The 2010 L.A. County Fair will run Sept. 4–Oct. 3, closed Mondays and Tuesdays. Opening Day is Saturday, Sept. 4 of Labor Day Weekend. Thoroughbred horse racing at Fairplex Park is Sept. 9-27, closed Mondays and Tuesdays.  Fairplex also includes the Sheraton Fairplex hotel, the Sheraton KOA/RV Park, Fairplex Park, a 5/8ths mile horse racing track, the Millard Sheets Center for the Arts, the Child Development Center at Fairplex, Barretts Equine Ltd., a thoroughbred horse racing auction facility and the Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum.

William K. Seppi - GM - Costeaux French Bakery, Inc. Healdsburg, CA
The Healdsburg bakery is beloved for its legendary artisan breads and open air bakery café. Since its first Sonoma County Harvest Fair Sweepstakes for sourdough bread in 1981, it has been a consistent award winner for specialty and artisan breads which are a mainstay of the café menu offerings. This year, the Best of Show winner was Costeaux's Ciabatta. Costeaux is also well-known for legendary desserts and is a premier purveyor of wedding cakes.

Friday, September 10, 2010

9/10 - Joe Theisman, Mario Batali, Steve Evans

Joe Theisman - Star Quarterback  "Washington Redskins"
Joe Theismann - BIO Two-time Pro Bowl quarterback with the Washington Redskins Former Notre Dame All-American Sportscaster, Restaurateur and AAA Advocate Joe Theismann is an entrepreneur and the former star quarterback for the Washington Redskins. Most recently, he spent the last decades working for ESPN on their NFL broadcast. Currently, Joe is the host of the Joe Theismann’s radio show on ESPN 980 in Washington DC and will be working with Sterling Sharp and Brian Baldinger at the NFL Network. The former Washington Redskins quarterback joined ESPN in April 1988, reuniting with play-by-play voice, Mike Patrick. Theismann’s first television experience came in 1976 when he served as analyst alongside Patrick for University of Maryland basketball telecasts. Theismann joined ESPN after spending two seasons as an NFL analyst for CBS Sports. A 12-year NFL veteran, Theismann played in 163 consecutive games from 1974-1985 and holds Redskins’ records for passing yardage (25,206), completions (2.044) and attempts (3,602). A two-time Pro Bowl selection, Theismann led Washington to a 27-17 victory over the Miami Dolphins in Super Bowl XVII. Theismann was selected the NFL’s Man of the Year in 1982 for his community service and dedication to the health and welfare of children. He won the league’s 1983 Most Valuable Player Award for leading the Redskins to an NFL-recorded 541 points and a second consecutive Super Bowl appearance. His career ended abruptly in 1985 after sustaining a broken leg during a game against the New York Giants on national television. Theismann graduated in 1971 from the University of Notre Dame where he received All-America honors and led the Fighting Irish to consecutive Cotton Bowls and was runner-up to Jim Plunkett in the Heisman Trophy balloting. In 2003, Theismann was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. Theismann began his career in 1971 with the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League, after being drafted by the Miami Dolphins and Major League Baseball’s Minnesota Twins. Theismann, a much sought after motivational speaker, also oversees a popular Washington, DC restaurant that bears his name. Born September 9, 1949, he is also the author of The Complete Idiots Guide to Understanding Football Like a Pro. Discusses Commitment To Raising Awareness For Condition Known as Triple A Free Health Services Offered at Pharmacies Across the Country Former professional football quarterback and sportscaster, Joe Theismann was shocked when his 89-year old father told him he was diagnosed with an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA). Known as a “silent killer” because it often strikes with no warning, AAA is a deadly vascular condition.

Chef - Mario Batali - "Iron Chef America"
With fifteen restaurants, eight cookbooks and a host of television shows, including the ever-popular Iron Chef America, Mario Batali is arguably one of the most recognized and respected chefs working in America today. This, combined with his larger-than-life personality, is the reason that he has received accolades like GQ Magazine’s Man of the Year and the James Beard Award for Outstanding Chef.  Mario and his business partner Joe Bastianich own fifteen restaurants across the country including their flagship New York City restaurant Babbo Ristorante e Enoteca, as well as, two restaurants in Los Angeles and three in Las Vegas. The duo’s latest venture is Eataly, a 50,000 foot marketplace located in New York City.  Raised in Seattle, Mario studied the golden age of Spanish theater at Rutgers University. Soon after graduating, he took his first bite of culinary training at Le Cordon Bleu in London, from which he withdrew almost immediately due to a "lack of interest." An apprenticeship with London’s legendary chef Marco Pierre White and three years of intense culinary training in the Northern Italian village of Borgo Capanne (population 200) gave him the essential skills and knowledge to return to his native U.S.  Mario is also the author of eight cookbooks including the James Beard Award Winning, Molto Italiano: 327 Simple Italian Recipes (Ecco 2005) and the New York Times Bestseller Mario Batali Italian Grill (Ecco 2007). His new highly anticipated eighth cookbook, Molto Gusto, based on the classic and celebrated dishes of Otto Enoteca Pizzeria (Ecco 2010) hit shelves this spring.  In May of 2008, Mario started the Mario Batali Foundation with a mission to feed, protect, educate, and empower children. Mario splits his time between New York City’s Greenwich Village and northern Michigan with his wife and their two sons. For more information on Mario and his many projects visit  .

Steve Evans - The Movie Guy
Tips on the best & worst this weekend at the Box Office. Steve reviews and comments on all the latest from Hollywood and gets the story behind the film.A veteran of the industry, "The Movie Guy" says exactly how he feels about the movies that you will be watching this weekend. Mike Horn comments on the lineup of big screen offerings but does not always agree with what Steve has to say. This is the movie review program to listen to every week and get the "real deal".

Thursday, September 9, 2010

9-9 - Michael Silacci, Myrna Goodman, Josh Gates,

 Josh Gates -  Host Syfy's "Destination Truth"
Josh Gates (born August 10, 1977 in Gloucester, Massachusetts) is an American adventurer, explorer, photographer, and television personality. He is currently the host of Destination Truth on Syfy, (formerly the Sci Fi Channel), a weekly one-hour show filmed in remote locations around the world that explores some of the world's mysteries and unexplained phenomena. Gates was born in Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts, where he was the president of his high school class, and currently resides in Los Angeles, California. He has degrees in archaeology and drama from Tufts University, where he graduated with honors in 1999. In addition to being a qualified SCUBA diver, Gates has also summited Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa and climbed Mt. Aconcagua in the Argentine Andes. From 1996 to 1998, Gates participated in The University of Maryland's archaeological excavations of Caesarea Maritima in Israel. Part of a small SCUBA team, Gates worked with researchers to excavate and better understand the ancient city's submerged harbor complex. In addition to his field work, Gates has traveled to 71 countries around the world and was recently inducted into The Explorers Club, a prestigious organization dedicated to the advancement of exploration since 1904.

Myra Goodman  "Earthbound Cook"
EARTHBOUND COOK pairs recipes with the information cooks need to make smarter choices, such as: • Pork Chile Verde, plus how to make the most eco-friendly meat choices and how to decode the labels on poultry and eggs. • Vegetarian entrees like Pumpkins Stuffed with Quinoa, Butternut and Cranberries for delicious meals to help people eat lower on the food chain. • Crusted Salmon, with information on the best choices for wild and eco-friendly farmed salmon. As a busy working mom who makes it a priority to enjoy family mealtime almost every night, Myra offers advice on cooking with kids – making meal preparation a family act. She also shares a wealth of her kitchen wisdom on how saving time can also save household energy, and demonstrates invaluable cooking tips like the proper way to shave fennel, clean mushrooms, cut herbs, peel fava beans, prep kale, and deglaze a pan – and shines the spotlight on her favorite ingredients from Apples to Zucchini. About the author: Myra Goodman is the co-owner and vice president of Earthbound Farm, which she founded with her husband, Drew, in 1984. She is also the author of FOOD TO LIVE BY. Myra lives with her husband and two children in Carmel, California.

Opus One Wineries  Winemaker Michael Silacci
Michael Silacci joined Opus One in March 2001 as director of viticulture and enology and became winemaker in January of 2004, taking on responsibility for all aspects of vineyard management and winemaking.  Prior to his appointment at Opus One, Mr. Silacci spent 6 years as winemaker at Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, one year as winemaker at King Estate in Oregon, and 6 years at Beaulieu Vineyard. He also made wine in France and Chile. Mr. Silacci holds a master’s degree in viticulture from the University of California, Davis in addition to undergraduate degrees in enology from the University of California, Davis and the Institut d’Oenologie at the Université de Bordeaux.  Advancing a natural vision of winegrowing as the ultimate expression of terroir, Mr. Silacci ensures that the connection between viticulture and winemaking at Opus One is seamless, reflecting the philosophy of founders Baron Philippine de Rothschild and Robert Mondavi.  Opus One produces luxury wines at its Napa Valley winery in Oakville, California. The 2002 vintage is now distributed in all 50 U.S. States and 65 countries worldwide.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

9/8 - Lowell Bernstein, Chef Paul Prudhomme, Pam Breaux, Marci Rothman

/ Lowell Bernstein "TAKOSHER"  (Kosher Taco Truck)
Takosher™ is the first certified glatt kosher taco truck. We mix the sweet Jewish and spicy Mexican culinary traditions into unique mouth-watering tacos that are a delight to the senses. Each taco is hand crafted using only kosher and natural ingredients.  Takosher™ embodies the philosophy and spirituality of kosher by demonstrating an awareness, consciousness and appreciation for both people and the environment.  Takosher™ is committed to using the highest quality ingredients and providing fresh, flavorful and healthful food.  Takosher™ is a catalyst for bridging cultural gaps, unifying people, celebrating diversity and sharing great food experiences together.  Takosher™ participates in respectful and fair work and business practices.

World-renowned Chef Paul Prudhomme
Louisiana’s Tourism Secretary Pam Breaux 
As you know, the effects of the oil & 1.8 million gallons of chemical dispersants on Gulf seafood is still a major concern. More than 27,000 tests have been conducted on Gulf seafood since the BP oil spill and all results indicate the seafood is safe to eat. Live from the bayou shrimp docks to discuss the latest seafood developments, while the boats unload their morning catches. More than 35% of the country's seafood comes from Louisiana waters.

- Louisiana produces 30% of the domestic catch for the continental United States seafood.

- Louisiana produces 70% of the catch from the Gulf of Mexico.

- Louisiana seafood industry employs more than 27,000 people.

- Seafood is a $2.4 billion industry in Louisiana.

- Louisiana produces more shrimp, oyster, blue crab, crawfish and alligator than any other state.

- 70% of the oysters caught in the United States are from the Gulf Coast.

- Louisiana leads the nation in production of both hard and soft-shell crabs

Marci Rothman - The $5.00 Chef
Marcie Rothman grew up in Los Angeles surrounded by good cooks, fresh seasonal produce, and hundreds of restaurants full of the ethnic cuisines that have inspired her throughout her long career. She has studied cooking with such notables as Wolfgang Puck and Ken Hom, and is a longtime member of the International Association of Culinary Professionals, the San Francisco Professional Food Society, Toastmasters International, and the International Slow Food Movement.  After reading a newspaper article in 1988, in which a well-known chef offered advice on how to cook on a budget, but used expensive ingredients to create complicated meals, she felt drawn to get involved in this burgeoning movement. Using skills she gained at an early job as an editor and fact-checker at New West Magazine, Rothman tirelessly combed through mountains of data from the US Department of Labor Statistics on family food budgets. When she knew the facts, she knew what she wanted to do next. The Five Dollar Chef was born.

9/7 - Garen Staglin, Richard Binder

Garen Staglin - Staglin Family Vineyard

The 16th Annual Music Festival for Mental Health will take place on September 11, 2010 at Staglin Family Vineyard in Rutherford, California.  Come kick up your heels for mental health research! Join us for the 16th Annual Staglin Music Festival for Mental Health featuring Dwight Yoakam! Hit the dance floor (wear your jeans!) and enjoy an unforgettable day of learning, food, wine, and hope as you give a hand to the 57 million Americans who live with mental illness.  The Concert: Dwight Yoakam Performs His Country-Rock Classics  - The Dinner: The Fine Texas Cuisine of Chef Jon Bonnell .

Richard Binder - GM Phillipe the Original
Phillipe the Original has been operating for more than 100 years. The restaurant moved to its current location on North Alameda Street in 1951. The French Dip sandwich was created at Philippe's back in 1918 by founder Philippe Mathieu. For beverages, Philippe's serves cans of soft drinks, freshly brewed iced tea, lemonade, coffee, select wines, and beer. Historically, homemade wine had been available. The current owner, a wine aficionado, has added a small selection of California wines to the menu. Philippe's is famous for serving cups of regular coffee for 9 cents to this day, in honor of old-fashioned prices. The price was last raised from 5 cents in 1977.

Friday, September 3, 2010

9/6 - Kate MacMurray, Brett Munselle, Janine Falvo

 Kate MacMurray  - MacMurray Ranch
For Kate MacMurray, the hillside vineyards and tree-lined meadows of the historic MacMurray Ranch are home. "This a timeless place," says Kate. "You can feel the rich history here, and you can taste it in our wines."  Kate was just six weeks old when her parents, famed Hollywood actors Fred MacMurray and June Haver, brought her to the incredible ranch that had been in the MacMurray family since 1941. She grew up here, riding horses and playing amid the oak trees. Following a Hollywood career in acting, screenwriting and film production, Kate returned to the Russian River Valley, where she now lives in a cabin built by her father. As an integral part of MacMurray Ranch wines, Kate has a deep appreciation for viticulture and winemaking. She is actively engaged in Sonoma's thriving wine community, carrying on her family's legacy and the heritage of MacMurray Ranch.

Brett Munselle - Munselle Vineyards
More than 130 years ago, our family arrived in the Alexander Valley with a vision of producing fine wines from the rich soils the Valley has become known for. Shadrach Osborn was the proprietor of Alexander Valley's first winery, Lone Pine Cellars, and Broder Frellson, the manager and winemaker for the second, simply called Red Winery. As generations passed, our family stepped away from winemaking to focus their efforts toward cultivation of the land. Their industry varied from farming grapes to dairy cattle, then prunes and orchards and finally, back to grapes in 1972.   For more than three decades we've produced premium grapes that have contributed to a multitude of award-winning and notable wines. Now, five generations later, we've come full circle with a return to winemaking. With every grape and bottle we produce, we honor the vision of our ancestors, and the heritage and hard work of our family.

Janine Falvo -  The Fresh Face of Wine Country Cuisine
Janine Falvo’s passion for food stems from a family deeply rooted in culinary tradition. Today she enjoys being the Chef de Cuisine of Carneros Bistro & Wine Bar for The Lodge at Sonoma. Raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, her childhood years were filled with memories of berry picking, seasonal harvest canning and celebratory holiday feasts. After years of showcasing her culinary prowess to her family and friends at such gatherings, she decided to hone her skills and make a career out of her life long passion.  Arriving at Carneros Bistro & Wine Bar in April 2005, Janine had a strong commitment to using only the finest farm fresh ingredients. This dedication was quickly recognized and in January 2006 as she was promoted to the position of Chef de Cuisine. Janine has taken the menu and restaurant to a new level by offering up contemporary yet approachable “Sonoma Wine Country Cuisine”, with a touch of whimsy. She's also created quite a buzz and local following since she took over the reigns and was recently named "Rising Star Chef" for Restaurant Hospitality magazine in 2007.  Whether it is the Alaskan Halibut with lobster home fries and truffle hollandaise, or the Wood Roasted Mussels with roasted garlic, Hobb’s Ham Hock, Red Rocket Ale and chilies, Janine offers a fresh approach to the restaurant’s culinary mission while keeping in line with the Carneros tradition of celebrating the finest local artisan meats and cheeses, organic produce, and fresh herbs from their chef’s garden. Her signature dishes highlight the distinct flavors and rich tastes of Northern California’s Wine Country and complement the restaurant’s exclusive Sonoma County wine list.   A graduate of the Pennsylvania Culinary Institute, Janine completed the comprehensive and rigorous training necessary to become a skilled chef. Prior to joining the Lodge at Sonoma, she launched Molive restaurant in Chicago’s Whitehall Hotel with noted Bay Area Chef Bart Homser and was the opening Executive Sous Chef at Bradley Ogden’s fine dining restaurant, Parcel 104 in Santa Clara, California. This spring’s Wine Exclusive Experience with the Sonoma Valley Film Festival invites you to indulge in the luxurious property at The Lodge at Sonoma as part of the wine, food and film festivities. Nestled in Sonoma Valley, this California wine country resort is less than an hour north of San Francisco and located among the country’s finest wineries. Plus round out your VIP weekend with star status dining at their Carneros Bistro & Wine Bar!

Chris Sawyer, Lead Sommelier, Sonoma Wine Country Weekend
An internationally-renowned sommelier, wine journalist, consultant, critic and public speaker, Christopher Sawyer travels the world following trends in wine and participating as a judge in international wine competitions, and has been featured in a wide array of national media, including USAToday, MSN, NBC, ABC, CNN, Redbook, Maxim, National Geographic Traveler and Esquire. Sommelier Star: Christopher Sawyer with Gina Gallo.  Taste the best of the best when Gina Gallo leads this exclusive tour, sponsored by Visa Signature focusing on luxury wines of Sonoma County. You'll sip and savor your way through coveted selections from our benchmark producers.

Eva Bertran -  Gloria Ferrer
“Gloria Ferrer reliably produces some of California best sparkling wines, from the fruit-forward blanc de noirs to the richly structured Carneros Cuvée. On a warm day, step out onto the terrace of the visitors center as you sip your bubbly or one of the winery's Pinot Noirs or Chardonnays…” Wine Spectator, Travel to California Wine Country, June 15, 2008. For more than 20 years, Gloria Ferrer Caves & Vineyards—the first sparkling wine house in the Sonoma Carneros region—has invited visitors to discover cool-climate wines served with warm Spanish hospitality. Owned by the Ferrer family, whose wine experience is rooted in 19th century Spain, our winery is a vibrant blend of Catalan and California mission design. We cultivate fruit for our premium quality sparkling and still wines in our 335 acres of estate vineyards distinguished by warm days, cool nights, summer fog and a long growing season that coaxes grapes to maturity slowly and consistently, with balanced sugar and acidity. Our Vineyard Manager Mike Crumly and Winemaker Bob Iantosca, both of whom have worked for Gloria Ferrer from its inception, have devoted more than two decades to identifying the diverse soil types, microclimates and specific needs of every vine in their care.