What’s the best thing to happen in Southern California in May? If you’re a lover of Italian wine and food, then there is nothing better than Vino California, the annual celebration of Italy’s finest. [...]
On the evening of October 9, 2012, Guy Fieri’s signature shining-red late-1960s Camaro convertible pulled alongside the curb of the New York Times building in the heart of Manhattan’s buzzing Times Square district. Fans of his string of Food Network hits including "Guy’s Big Bite" and "Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives" knew something big was up. The normal throngs of theatergoers, foodies and bewildered tourists that cram the entertainment-on-steroids West Forties found themselves working their way around the long line of hip revelers piling in to experience the grand opening of Guy’s American Kitchen and Bar at 240 West 44th Street.
Nic’s Beverly Hills
, the hip bastion of all things vodka, has decided to spice things up by transforming their backyard parking lot into a luxury poolside outdoor lounge. No one seems to care that there is no pool – the vibe is definitely Beverly Hills poolside chic. They kicked off the new theme with a party that featured some inventively tasty vodka cocktails, bite size upscale munchies, a 60-foot tall video installation and party tunes presented by KCRW
DJ Mario Cotto. The proceeds of the event went to the L.A. Regional Food Bank
, so everyone involved had a blast and did a good deed.
West 4th and Jane
is a brew pub in downtown Santa Monica that just celebrated their third anniversary. They have a reputation for excellent craft beer selections and now have a new chef who has overhauled the menu. A recent Spring Menu Launch Party was the perfect opportunity to check out what has changed at this hip Westside hangout for beer lovers.
If a restaurant has its opening delayed for more than a year and the proprietors have a well earned reputation for high quality modern Mexican cuisine, expectations run high when it finally opens. Mercado
, the new restaurant on 4th Street in Santa Monica is the brainchild of owner Jesse Gomez and co-owner/Chef Jose Acevedo. Gomez and Acevedo also have a successful restaurant called Yzta Cocina Mexicana
on the east side of downtown Los Angeles. Mercado
features the same sophisticated cooking using only the best farm fresh ingredients and complements the food with professionally mixed cocktails. The market for upscale Mexican cuisine is pretty crowded on the west side of Los Angeles, but Mercado definitely has the right formula for success.
The Cahuenga corridor north of Sunset Blvd. in Hollywood is jammed with bars, clubs, restaurants and hangouts trying desperately to attract the abundant night owls in the neighborhood. Nestled into the middle of a mini-mall at the corner of Selma Ave. and Cahuenga Blvd. is District 13
a gastro pub that stands out from the crowd with an expertly selected assortment of craft beers and some fine pub food.
On the second floor of the Westfield Century City shopping center is a restaurant that seems to have been transported from a bustling corner of Milan, Italy. Obika Mozzarella Bar is a sleek, fine dining establishment that honors the old world by using fresh ingredients prepared authentically. In addition to a full menu of Italian delicacies, the restaurant has begun serving pizza that compares favorably with some of the best in Los Angeles.
Nestled in a mini-mall several blocks east of downtown Los Angeles is a classy and modern Mexican restaurant called Yxta. In a neighborhood that looks like it requires a Marine escort to navigate safely, this fine eatery serves some delicious, modern interpretations of Mexican cuisine. Owner Jesse Gomez and Chef Jose Acevedo are working on launching a new restaurant, Mercado, in downtown Santa Monica. They recently served a showcase four course dinner menu paired with Tequila Ocho cocktails and flights to preview the new restaurant.
It is a daunting task to launch a high-end restaurant in a difficult economy, not to mention having to deal with the sky-high rents of Beverly Hills. The people behind Taberna Mexicana must have been extremely confident when they opened their new Bedford Drive establishment in the midst of some of the most expensive real estate in the ritziest part of Los Angeles. Having recently experienced the elegant atmosphere, expert service and fine creative dishes of executive chef Alex Padilla, it is clear to us that Taberna Mexicana has the right stuff to compete in this challenging market.
The Supperclub Los Angeles is one of Hollywood’s hot new trendy venues (perhaps the first “trenue?”). Based on the original Supperclub in Amsterdam, the retrofitted Vogue Movie Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard has been transformed by its new owners into a blank canvas. Bars, couches, beds, floors, walls, and ceiling are pure white. In the words of the designer, “The color we add to it will shape it. This way, it can become anything!” And what a show it has become. At the opening night gala on December 2, the Carnivale/Mardi Gras/Cabaret atmosphere included a zebra, stilt walkers, midgets, sky dancers, performance artists, floor dancers, a pantomime tiger, strobe lights, and house music punctuated by celebrity sightings, hot pants, and cool cocktails.