If you live in Richmond, you might be familiar with Full Disclosure, a national radio show based in Richmond which airs on WRIR-FM 97.3. Roben Farzad, the show’s creator and host, upped the ante last month when he put on his first live broadcast featuring Sherry and John Petersik of Young House Love. This past weekend, Kelsey and I were lucky enough to attend the second live broadcast in what Farzad hopes will be a series of monthly shows. May’s show was an evening with Chef Peter Chang at the Hippodrome Theater. The evening included an interview of Chef Peter Chang conducted by Farzad and Style Weekly food and drink editor Brandon Fox and was accompanied by a four-course dinner prepared by Chang himself.
While the famous chef might be characterized by many as elusive, it was also evident that this incredibly successful man is both humble and kind. During the interview (listen here), Chang talked about his path to becoming a chef and the dedication he has to feeding people. We spoke with him for a few minutes after the interview and it was easy to forget we were talking to a James Beard Award finalist – a chef who has been featured in everything from The New York Times to Bon Appétit. Then we remembered how good our dinner was and quickly remembered just who we were talking to.
The Dish: Full Disclosure, An Evening with Peter Chang
Kelsey and I have both dined at Peter Chang’s restaurant in Short Pump before so, we knew we were in for a treat. What we didn’t know is that we were in for the equivalent of a Sichuan smorgasbord – and a very delicious one at that.
The appetizer course included dry-smoked beef, smoked salmon, chicken with mustard sauce and cucumber in fresh garlic sauce. My favorite thing from the first course was probably the chicken with mustard sauce, though the cucumbers were a nice complement to the spice in all of the other dishes.
The dim-sum course included Szechuan cold mixed noodles, kung-pao chicken buns, pork and sticky rice shumai and some amazing green beans. Each time I tried something new, I thought okay, this one is my favorite – until I tried the next dish and I would think the same thing.
The two entrees were pan-fried sliced chicken with Szechuan chili peppers and roasted fish filet with Thai chili and curry. The chicken had Chang’s signature spicy kick, without being too overpowering. The fish was flaky and perfectly cooked in a savory, flavorful sauce.
As you might guess, we were quite full by the end of the evening but it was worth it – everything we had was incredible.
What’s next for Full Disclosure
I caught up with Roben Farzad the morning after the live broadcast to learn more about his background, Full Disclosure and what’s next for the show.
In addition to hosting Full Disclosure, Farzad is a special correspondent for the PBS NewsHour. He lived in New York City for years covering covering economics for Bloomberg Businessweek before making the move to Richmond – a place that holds a lot of significance to him, as it’s where his wife was born and raised and where they got married.
Similarly to the renowned chef he interviewed, Farzad’s love for what he’s doing is immediately clear when talking to him, and he has big plans for what’s ahead. Ultimately, he hopes Full Disclosure will be a national show, with national guests and a national audience. Farzad mentioned names like Pat Benatar and Vince Gilligan when I asked him who he would love to have on the show in the future.
His hope for these live broadcasts is that they are a full experience for his audience – something that they won’t find anywhere else. When reflecting on his successful second live event, Farzad acknowledged that the evening with Peter Chang was one of a kind. “The people that came together, that will never happen again in that forum,” he said. “I was most gratified by the people that came up to me afterwards and said they knew they wouldn’t be able to get that experience elsewhere or get it again.”
The next Full Disclosure event is still in the works – but once it’s announced, you’ll want to get your tickets quickly. As Farzad mentioned above, the experience truly is one of a kind.