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Party: Los Angeles Magazine’s 12th Annual “The Food Event” Heats Up the Malibu Hills

Los Angeles Magazine’s “The Food Event” at Saddlerock Ranch on October 15, 2017. Photo courtesy of Jennifer Fujikawa Photography.

By Andy J. Gordon and Jenny Peters

We always know it will be an amazing afternoon of gourmet food, great wine, creative cocktails and amazing scenery when Los Angeles Magazine puts on their annual “The Food Event.” This year’s party, the 12th annual bash, took place at the breathtaking Saddlerock Ranch in the Malibu hills on October 15, 2017. Several hundred Angelenos enjoyed a blazing hot, magnificent day of culinary decadence.

Guests enjoying tasty food bites during Los Angeles Magazine’s “The Food Event” at Saddlerock Ranch on October 15, 2017. Photo courtesy of Jennifer Fujikawa Photography.

The magazine invited several of the Los Angeles area restaurants that were featured in the publication over the last year to participate. Each celebrated dining spot brought select tasty bites for attendees to enjoy. Additional vendors included fine wineries, numerous craft beer producers and a variety of spirits companies, all pouring samples and cocktails.

The event always attracts a large, knowledgeable group of foodies. Over the course of the afternoon, everyone enjoyed the many fine food samples and mingled with the chefs, sommeliers and spirits vendors. One popular draw was the chef demonstrations that took place under a tented stage. The Mahendro guys, from Badmaash, showed off their skills and presented some of their renowned Indian fusion cuisine. Miles Thompson, from Michael’s Restaurant Santa Monica, talked about using seasonal, fresh ingredients and presented a delicious potato dish.

The tender, delicious squid ink calamari from Scopa Italian Roots at Los Angeles Magazine’s “The Food Event” at Saddlerock Ranch on October 15, 2017. Photo courtesy of Andy J. Gordon 2017 ©.

With about 40 of the best area restaurants, 25 wineries and several premium beverage vendors to choose from, guests had a large variety of pleasant choices. We knew it would be a challenge, but we dove in and tried just about everything available – a tough job, but someone had to do it. The Bellwether’s succulent Vietnamese braised pork with glass noodle salad and Thai basil was amazing. 800 Degrees baked fresh, delicious mushroom-and-pepperoni pizzas. Scopa Italian Roots served tender, crispy calamari with squid ink on a brioche bun.

The intensely spicy, flavorful crab curry dish from Luv2eat Thai Bistro at Los Angeles Magazine’s “The Food Event” at Saddlerock Ranch on October 15, 2017. Photo courtesy of Jennifer Fujikawa Photography.

The Sunset Malibu offered tuna tartare with cucumbers, rice and a yuzu glaze. Love2Eat Thai Bistro served an intensely spicy, but satisfying crab curry with noodles. Poppy + Rose had one of the most popular booths as they served fried chicken and waffles to a ravenous crowd. 71Above presented grilled shrimp with passion fruit, soy, arugula and peanuts. Fig Restaurant Santa Monica served grilled lamb with hummus, pomegranate and sweet corn.

Executive Chef Yousef Ghalaini from Fig Santa Monica with his grilled lamb and hummus dish at Los Angeles Magazine’s “The Food Event” at Saddlerock Ranch on October 15, 2017. Photo courtesy of Andy J. Gordon 2017 ©.

Creative desserts were in abundance. Paderia Bakehouse offered amazing chocolate walnut and chocolate peanut butter cookies. Fatamorgana Gelato had Madagascar chocolate, mint chocolate chip and raspberry flavors. Infiniti, the official car sponsor of the event, displayed several of their models all day, then late in the afternoon they drew a large crowd to their lounge by serving Holy Roly ice cream sundaes.

Guests enjoying delicious Italian ice cream from Fatamorgana Gelato at Los Angeles Magazine’s “The Food Event” at Saddlerock Ranch on October 15, 2017. Photo courtesy of Jennifer Fujikawa Photography.

Attendees paired the amazing food choices with equally special beverages. Fans of premium spirits had several options. Partida Tequila served tasty margaritas. Glenfiddich poured a few of their aged single-malt scotch selections. Hendrick’s Gin mixed herbaceous cocktails. Wine connoisseurs had many fine selections. Wrath poured several different vintages of their delicious Pinot Noir. Ascension Cellars served a few varieties including their delicious 2011 Ascendance, a Cabernet-Merlot blend. Trombetta Family Wines poured several tasty Pinot Noirs. Malibu Family Wines served an assortment of their Semler and Saddlerock varieties.

The Partida Tequila cocktail bar at Los Angeles Magazine’s “The Food Event” at Saddlerock Ranch on October 15, 2017. Photo courtesy of Jennifer Fujikawa Photography.

At the convivial craft beer garden, guests found a shady escape from the intense afternoon sun. Tasty beer samples were available from Baja Brewing Company, Lagunitas Brewing Company, Mikkeller DTLA and Peroni Nastro Azzurro. Nearby, a live-music ensemble played blues under the trees.

As usual, the 12th annual Los Angeles Magazine “The Food Event” was a three-hour marathon of fabulous overindulgence; by the time the last bite and sip were taken, we were already looking forward to next year’s event. Until then, we’ll gladly head out to visit some of Los Angeles’ best restaurants, the places that were featured at the extremely decadent, amazing afternoon party.

About Andy J. Gordon (188 Articles)
<p>Andy J. Gordon, a Los Angeles-based marketing and strategy consultant, made his writing debut in “Brentwood” magazine in 2007. His interests include music, sports, consumer electronics, premium libations, fine dining, travel, fast cars, and enjoying life.</p>