Executive Chef Michael Hung and his celebrity chef friends Annc The Colony Palms Hotel Club Guest Chef Series

The Colony Palms Hotel is thrilled to announce the highly anticipated “Join The Club Guest Chef Series” at The Colony Club, featuring renowned Executive Chef Michael Hung and his esteemed celebrity chef friends.

Taking place throughout the month of June 2023, this exclusive culinary event promises an extraordinary dining experience for guests seeking exquisite flavors and a touch of glamour!

Colony Club's The Club Guest Chef Series

Colony Club’s The Club Guest Chef Series

The Colony Club, The Colony Palms Hotel’s signature restaurant, is renowned for its innovative California Fare served throughout the day, including breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Nestled in the heart of Palm Springs, guests have the option to dine in the main dining room, where they can indulge in Steve Hermann’s modern take on Art Deco glamour or choose the al fresco poolside dining patio with breathtaking views of the mountains.

The “Join The Club Guest Chef Series,” hosted by Executive Chef Michael Hung, will bring together a curated collection of celebrity chefs for four special evenings of culinary excellence. Each event will feature a delectable Five-Course Prix-Fixe Menu, Optional Wine Pairing, and selection of Specialty Handcrafted Cocktails created by The Colony ClubSO.PA, and Hermann’s Bungalows Bar Manager, Kelly David.

Chef Brittany Cassidy

Chef Brittany Cassidy

The series kicks-off on Wednesday, June 7th, 2023, with Chef Brittany Cassidy, Head Chef at Violet Bistro in Westwood. Born and raised in San Diego, Cassidy’s culinary journey spans from Le Cordon Bleu in Hollywood to some of LA’s top kitchens, including Rustic Canyon and Birdie G’s. She will showcase her affinity for crave-worthy comfort food and transportive French Bistro fare in a menu that includes dishes such as her Roasted Beet Salad, and Confit Duck Leg, along with Hung’s Local Halibut Carpaccio and Sauteed Petrale Sole, finished with Cassidy’s Vegan Chocolate Mousse ($89 per person, does not include tax and gratuity).


Chef Isaias Peña

Chef Isaias Peña

On Wednesday, June 14th, 2023, Chef Isaias Peña, Caruso Regional Executive Chef of Hank’s and Qué Padre in the Pacific Palisades at Palisades Village, will take the stage. With a deep appreciation for Mexican cuisine and fusion, Chef Peña’s culinary creations at Hank’s and Qué Padre captivate diners with their extraordinary flavors and striking presentation.

Chef Walter Nunez

Chef Walter Nunez

The Guest Chef Series continues Wednesday, June 21st, 2023, with Chef Walter Nunez, Executive Chef of The Rex – Seaside Steakhouse in Redondo Beach. Chef Nunez’s refined approach to cuisine has elevated The Rex’s dining experience, showcasing his expertise in traditional and contemporary culinary techniques.

Chef Chris Oh

The final event of the series will be held on Wednesday, June 28th, 2023, featuring the multi-talented Chef Chris Oh (Seoul Sausage, Escala K-Town,Um.Ma SF, Kamu Ultra Karaoke) and Executive Chef Michael Hung presenting an evening of Traditional Korean Barbeque spotlighting Prime Beef and Japanese A5 Wagyu Beef served on The Colony Club’s poolside dining patio. Chef Chris Oh is known as the founder of Seoul Sausage Co and a winner of multiple TV competition shows, Chef Oh’s innovative culinary creations bridge cultural traditions and redefine the boundaries of gastronomy.

For more information on The Colony Club’s “Join The Club Guest Chef Series” coming up on Wednesday, June 7th, 2023, Wednesday, June 14th, 2023, Wednesday, June 21st, 2023, and Wednesday, June 28th, 2023, please call 760.969.1800 or to make your reservations now, please visitOpenTable.com.


The Colony Club at The Colony Palms Hotel is open for Dinner every Sunday through Thursday from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm, and every Friday and Saturday from 5:00 pm to 10:00 pm. Lunch is server every Monday through Friday from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm. Breakfast is offered every Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 11:00 am, and Brunch is served every Saturday and Sunday from 8:00 am to 3:00 pm. For more information about The Colony Club restaurant at The Colony Palms Hotel or to make reservations, please call 760.969.1800 or visit www.ColonyPalmsHotels.com.




The Colony Club is The Colony Palm Hotel’s signature restaurant where Executive Chef Michael Hung showcases his innovative California Fare for Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner. Guests of The Colony Club can dine inside the main dining room while enjoying Hermann’s modern take on Art Deco glamour or enjoy the warm breezes while dining al fresco poolside with a stunning view of the mountains.



Chef Michael Hung, a culinary virtuoso, brings his innovative vision and wealth of experience to The Colony Club at The Colony Palms Hotel and SO.PA at L’Horizon Resort and Hermann Bungalows as their newly appointed Executive Chef.

With an impressive career spanning from apprenticeships at Daniel and Aquavit in New York City to working alongside renowned chefs in San Francisco, including Chef Traci Des Jardins at Jardiniere and Chef Roland Passot at La Folie, Chef Hung has solidified his reputation as a rising star.

Notable achievements include his acclaimed restaurant Faith & Flower in Los Angeles, which garnered numerous accolades, and the highly praised Viviane at the Avalon Hotel, recognized by food critics and publications alike.

Now in Palm Springs, Chef Michael Hung is poised to elevate dining experiences, fusing vibrant flavors, local ingredients, and his own creative flair to create unforgettable culinary journeys at these esteemed establishments.



Opened in the 1930s, The Colony Palms has a colorful history involving mobsters, athletes, politicians, and Hollywood stars. This Spanish colonial gem, updated by celebrated designer Steve Hermann, blends Hollywood glamour with an art-

deco aesthetic. Located in the heart of Palm Springs, it provides a lush escape just steps from the city’s design district, complete with boutiques, restaurants, and nightlife. With fire pits and intimate alcoves dotted throughout the property, the exclusive and elevated setting features 57 exquisitely designed rooms and suites, unrivaled poolside dining, and a wellness spa with all the latest offerings.

This upscale adults-only boutique hotel and its inviting palm tree-lined pool are set against the backdrop of the San Jacinto Mountains. The perfect place to savor the ultimate Palm Springs experience, The Colony Palms is a laid-back yet upbeat retreat that brings a dash of Hollywood glamour to the desert.


Steve Hermann is a celebrated designer of high-end homes and hotels. As one of the most prolific designers within California, he is known as the design guru for the Hollywood elite, captains of industry, and foreign royalty.

His innovative and imaginative homes are owned by A-list celebrities, entertainment executives and members of the Forbes top ten wealthiest list. His designs have been featured on Architectural Digest, Conde Nast Traveler, Travel and Leisure, E!, MTV, ABC, as well as in hundreds of magazines and websites worldwide.

One of his projects, called The Glass Pavilion, was published in over a hundred magazines and newspapers and was the third most Googled house in the world. Steve has established a world recognized luxury hospitality company, Steve Hermann Luxury Hotels, of which L’Horizon Palm Springs served as the initial flagship property. L’Horizon has won dozens of awards including the #1 Resort in the world by the readers of Conde Naste Traveler.

Steve has followed up his success by adding The Colony Palms Hotel to his portfolio, which he has transformed into another spectacular luxury resort. When Steve is not designing residences and opening hotels, he spends his time collecting post war, European sports cars, which he enjoys driving with his wife and two young daughters. After 15 years of living in Los Angeles, Steve currently calls Montecito, California home.

Social Media: 

Follow @colonyclubps on Instagram and @colonypalmshotel on Facebook

Follow Executive Chef Michael Hung @chefmikeh on Instagram

The Colony Club at The Colony Palms Hotel

572 N. Indian Canyon Drive

Palm Springs, CA 92262

T: 760.969.1800




Secret of Caesar salad: John Robert Sutton Reveals on “Foods That Matter” Podcast

Secret of Caesar salad: John Robert Sutton Reveals on “Foods That Matter” Podcast

The Caesar salad was NOT invented in Italy!

The iconic dish, celebrating its 100th birthday this year, has roots in Tijuana, Mexico.

Foods That Matter John Robert Sutton

Foods ThatMatter John Robert Sutton

To celebrate, podcast host of CurtCo Media’s Foods That Matter and seasoned food archaeologist John Robert Sutton joined Juan José “Tana” Plascencia, the owner of Caesar’s Restaurant – home of the first Caesar salad – in person.

To eat some original recipe salad and chat about how, why, where, and by whom the dish came to be one of the most popular menu items in the US.

John and Tana’s intriguing conversation, starting with the recipe’s origins and ending with its worldwide prominence, is available on Foods That Matter on all major podcast platforms. You get a firsthand look at the backstory of Caesar salad, delving into all the rich flavors and history that made it such an important influence in the dining world.

Near or visiting Tijuana?

Join Tana at the centennial celebration at Caesar’s Restaurant on July 7, 2024. Plus, if you tell Tana that you listened to this episode of Foods That Matter – Celebrating 100 Years of Caesar Salad with the Origin Story that Starts in Tijuana, Mexico – he will give you the authentic recipe to take home!

About Foods That Matter:
Come along for a culinary thrill as Foods That Matter transports foodies to corners of the world through stories of adventure with food archeologist John Robert Sutton, also known as ‘The Indiana Jones of Food.’

John unlocks the secrets to the globe’s extraordinary cuisines, as he’s been doing throughout his travels in over 120 countries while enriching top grocery stores and Michelin-starred chefs with the finest ingredients and powering them with quality products.

The presenting sponsor of Foods That Matter is Watkins, award-winning extracts, spices & herbs, seasoning blends, grilling rubs & marinades, artificial dye-free baking decorations, and more crafted in the USA since 1868. The show is available on podcast platforms, including Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music, SpotifyYouTube and Goodpods.

About CurtCo Media:
CurtCo Media – with its talented producers and creative team – provides listeners with quality podcasts, featuring authoritative hosts, distinguished guests, and inspiring storytellers. The company presents many nationally-recognized series, covering topics such as scripted sci-fi (SOLAR), luxury (Cars That MatterTravel That Matters, Wines That Matter) and others.

Nén Danang Awarded 2024 MICHELIN Green Star for Sustainability

Nén Danang Awarded 2024 MICHELIN Green Star for Sustainability

At the prestigious MICHELIN Awards Ceremony held at the InterContinental Hotel Saigon, a notable achievement was celebrated within the realm of sustainable gastronomy: Nén Danang, a pioneer in Vietnam’s fine dining scene, was honored with the 2024 MICHELIN Green Star for Excellence in Sustainability. As the first Vietnamese restaurant in the world to be recognized, as well as the first in Vietnam, this accolade underscores Nén’s commitment to innovative and environmentally conscious practices that set a benchmark for the industry.

The Michelin Green Star, a prestigious annual award, celebrates restaurants leading the industry in sustainability. Highlighting establishments that uphold rigorous ethical and environmental standards, this accolade recognizes those who collaborate with sustainable producers and suppliers to minimize waste and reduce or eliminate plastics and other non-recyclable materials. To date, only 540 restaurants worldwide have earned this honor, offering dining experiences that not only exemplify culinary excellence but also demonstrate exceptional eco-friendly practices. These restaurants serve as beacons of inspiration for both enthusiastic foodies and the broader hospitality industry.

Nén Danang, under the visionary leadership of Chef Summer Le and her partner Leon Le, has been instrumental in redefining what it means to dine sustainably. With a culinary philosophy deeply rooted in the principles of ethical and environmental stewardship, Nén sources 99% of its ingredients locally, including from its own farms, thereby supporting Vietnam’s local economies and artisans while minimizing environmental impact. This approach not only ensures the freshest ingredients but also fosters a strong connection with the community and the natural world.

The restaurant’s Sto:ry Menus exemplify this ethos, merging rich Vietnamese traditions with inventive dining experiences. Each dish is a celebration of nature and a narrative of culture, crafted to offer a multi-sensory delight that evokes emotions ranging from joy to nostalgia. Notably, their Sto:ry Menu #5 is a zero-waste venture that transforms everyday ingredients, such as eggshells into noodles, showcasing an innovative approach to sustainability.

The core of Nén’s culinary identity lies in its commitment to ‘Conscious Vietnamese cuisine.’ The restaurant’s ethos—origin, aesthetic, intention, balance, emotion, and presence—guides its culinary choices. Each aspect, from the sourcing of ingredients to the final presentation, is thoughtfully curated to enhance the dining experience, making every meal an event of conscious consumption and enjoyment.

Nén’s unique approach to cuisine also reflects in its name, derived from a humble but flavorful ingredient found in Central Vietnam’s kitchens. This reflects the restaurant’s philosophy: finding potential in the overlooked and elevating it to something extraordinary. It’s about transforming simplicity into splendor, turning each meal into an exploration of the hidden depths of Vietnamese culinary traditions.

Located next to Nén Farm in Da Nang, the restaurant serves as the flagship for a brand that is deeply invested in research and sustainability. Despite challenges like a temporary closure during the Covid-19 pandemic, Nén Danang reopened in 2023 with renewed vigor and a continued focus on its sustainable mission. This commitment culminated in receiving Vietnam’s first and only MICHELIN Green Star in 2024, a testament to its leadership in promoting a sustainable and ethically aware dining culture.

Through Nén Danang, diners are invited not just to eat, but to experience stories through flavors, where each dish serves as a dialogue between the chef and the earth, a narrative that continues to inspire both food enthusiasts and culinary peers around the world.


WeHo’s Newest culinary experience: Blue Birdy Gastropub Opens on Sunset Strip Near legendary Whiskey A-Go-Go

Sunset Strip’s Blue Birdy Gastropub Opens Near legendary Whiskey A-Go-Go

Located two doors down from the legendary Whiskey A-Go-Go is a brand-new culinary experience.

Blue Birdy offers up some super tasty gastropub fare on the iconic Sunset Strip.

Blue Birdy opened its doors to amazing success in early 2024, due largely to its chef and owner JC Mahdavi.

JC is no stranger to success since he’s been in the restaurant business, having owned Joxer Daly’s in Culver City for many years. His formula is great food mixed with solid cocktail recipes. Joxer Daly’s is an Irish Pub/Sports Bar with a neighborhood feel, a true staple in the culinary landscape of Los Angeles.

He brings that same philosophy to Blue Birdy but with more of an upscale vibe.

Blue Birdy has a French-influenced menu. JC implements his family’s recipes, hailing from France, he knows what good mouthwatering food is and how to create it.

“I want my customers to feel comfortable at Blue Birdy,

a place that they can come to and leave the stress of their day behind,

enjoy great libations and wonderfully inspired gastropub cuisine.”

owner JC Mahdavi

Blue Birdy’s menu includes a wonderful specialty cocktail program, all made from scratch.

The Boom Ba Da packs a nice punch, with its smooth lemon flavor and gorgeous presentation.

Strawberry Fields is a nice refreshing blend of champagne vodka and strawberry puree, almost like a smoothy but with a nice marriage of citrus essences, which has a great mouth feel. Brunch items are huge and super tasty.

Their French Toast is unlike any other, with ube, cream cheese, and sugar-filled, it’s purple and really is amazing. The Short Rib Benedict is comfort brunch at its best, a must-try.

Their Noodle Salad is perfect for the health-conscious diner as well as their tempura asparagus. Entree menu items include Lemon Herb Chicken, Steak and Fries, Fish & Chips, Teriyaki Salmon, and lots of Burgers – all simply delectable.

Whatever you order, you too will be surprised at how great their food is.

The sparkling interior gives you an elegant hipster vibe.  The subtle blue flowers that adorn the overhead light fixtures really create a cool, sensual feeling.

Striations of blue linear lines are part of the overall flooring. Highlighted on one wall is a floor-to-ceiling LED flat-screen TV wall, that is guaranteed to bring in many sports fans for those big-ticket games, with many additional screens both inside and out.

Blue Birdy can accommodate inside seating as well as a front street-level patio and a back patio for more of a secluded experience, it’s the perfect spot for a private party.

There are plans for different themed nights. So far, Tropical Thursdays are guaranteed to get your Salsa on. Friday will be dress-up Drag Night, and Saturday is Shabhaye Tehran-LA. With all of the viewing opportunities, any night or day is a sports theme, but whatever the occasion, Blue Birdy will make your Sunset Strip experience one to remember.


About the Author
Joe Wehinger (nicknamed Joe Winger) has written for over 20 years about the business of lifestyle and entertainment. Joe is an entertainment producer, media entrepreneur, public speaker, and C-level consultant who owns businesses in entertainment, lifestyle, tourism and publishing. He is an award-winning filmmaker, published author, member of the Directors Guild of America, International Food Travel Wine Authors Association, WSET Level 2 Wine student, WSET Level 2 Cocktail student, member of the LA Wine Writers. Email to: Joe@FlavRReport.com

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