For those who don’t know, #EatARW, which started on May 17 and goes through this weekend, encourages folks to get out and visit new restaurants as well as re-discover old favorites by offering three-course prix fixe menus at more than 100 venues statewide.
So, it is only fitting that we focus this week’s #MediaMonday on a food-focused member of our local media – Joanie Simon, founder and host of Restaurant Live Arizona, a radio show dedicated to all things having to do with chefs, food and restaurants in Arizona and even beyond from time to time. (By the way, her Twitter and Instagram handles are @JoanieSimonSaid – is that not the cleverest thing ever or what?).
I adore Joanie for several reasons – we both graduated from Horizon High School in Scottsdale; we both love food; she lets me be a guest on her show from time to time; and we try not to take life too seriously.
Read on to find out why you should adore her – and her amazing show – too!
What do you want to tell the blogosphere about yourself today?
I started Restaurant Live Arizona (RLAZ) because I love restaurants and the people in them. Restaurateurs, chefs, bartenders, they’re all hard working people with fascinating stories. Through my career (restaurant point of sale and technology) I have gotten to know a lot of these characters and wanted to provide a platform where I could share their stories. I connected with some people in radio, got myself a WordPress site and podcasting equipment, and now here we are today, nearly 60 full episodes later, with a vibrant online community fueled by social media and my dear friends in the hospitality industry.
Given all our success in year 1, we have partnered up with a fabulous sponsor in web development and will be re-launching the site this month. Along with that, a new show format will follow.
Minisode Mondays: Short four to 10 minute interviews with a particular restaurant or food-focused event or business. These will be promotion intensive and time sensitive with a goal in driving business during a particular time-span. Examples of successful past minisodes have been with partners such as Arizona Restaurant Week, Flavors of Phoenix and Devoured. Feel free to reach out if you want to book a minisode!
Wine Wednesdays: I’ve met a lot of fun winos through RLAZ and it seems that they’re so enthusiastic, they need their own show. Every Wednesday we’ll release a 20 to 30 minute wine-centric show. We’ll focus on everything from Italian wines, rose, Arizona wine, to bubbles and beyond.
The Round Table: A full hour show with a round table of myself and two to three other restaurant personalities who I know to be entertaining, interesting and good at carrying conversation discussing current topics in food and restaurants. The idea here is for a show of pure entertainment for food fans. Guests on this show will be invitation only through my selective Round Table listserve. No press releases, no holds barred, just an hour of shenanigans and good old fashioned discussion.
Of course, we’ll also continue to provide content through the blog, social media and personal appearances. Big thanks to the Arizona hospitality and PR community for fueling RLAZ and ultimately, putting butts into seats of Arizona’s best restaurants!
Other than that, I’m obviously a big fan of great food and drink and a big geek when it comes to the culinary world. I’m a 3rd generation Arizonan and living the dream with my husband of seven years and two adorable boys, Blaise and Calvin.