Drinking Culture introduces trendsetters in world of spirits and libations. We meet childhood friends who opened a bar as an homage to their Indian upbringing, the founders of a microbrewery incorporating local Hawaiian flavors, a rum company preserving sugar cane farming and traditional rum agricole, and a chef combining a dynamic bar program with her James Beard Award winning cooking.
Food grounded in memories and cultural history somehow tastes better. In this episode, we explore nostalgia with father-son team Hidehito and Kenshiro Uki of Sun Noodles; Cantonese American chef Calvin Eng and his mom, Bonnie; an organization preserving and reimagining 14th century Korean noble cuisine; and the iconic Halekulani hotel where traditional Hawaiian dance and food share a stage.
We meet leaders of the grassroots food community advocating for change while preserving the soul of Chinatown. Writer Grace Young takes us on a tour of the oldest restaurants in Manhattan’s changing Chinatown, where Mei Lum (Wing on Wo) evolves her family’s heritage business, and chefs Helen Nguyen (Saigon Social) and Winston Chiu (Feed Forward) are feeding local residents in need.
On a trip to Oahu, we meet the Reppun family who are preserving taro farming; chef Mark Noguchi who prepares an epic potluck dinner; and chefs Michelle and Wade Ueoki who get personal when it comes to Hawaiian food while their mentor, chef Alan Wong, creates a tuna poke. We also meet Brooks Takenaka who runs a fish auction that helps regulate, market, and preserve Honolulu’s fishing industry.
Today’s trendsetting Asian restauranteurs/entrepreneurs are delighting diners with traditional Malay breakfast (Kopitiam), the unique Thai-Chinese cuisine of Phuket (Wan Wan), reimagined temaki (Nami Nori), luxe Michelin-starred contemporary Korean BBQ (Cote), and reimagined South Indian cuisine (Unapologetic Foods). Learn why Asian food has never been more exciting or inventive.
Wellness is front and center in the culinary space right now and this episode gives viewers a first-hand look at its innovators. In Feeding the Spirit, a TCM expert discusses Chinese wellness, we learn about the power of whole flower teas, make a visit to a temple to understand the benefits of a Yogic diet, and discover a 100-acre nature preserve combining food, spirituality, and health.