Archive for February, 2008

Rock & Roll Recipe Radio

February 29, 2008

Simple food-music puns are one thing, but Home Sweet Homewrecker takes it to an intelligent step above with Rock and Roll Recipe Radio. They invite you into their kitchen via a podcast of music that inspires their cooking. From the B-52’s and Beastie Boys to The Klaxons and Stereolab, these musically inclined chefs have good taste in their music and cooking.This episode features a rock and roll suicide birthday cake to a soundtrack of Radiohead, Cowboy Junkies and…. Cake.

Get Flipped

February 28, 2008

For the launch of Piper-Heidsieck’s new Rose Sauvage Champagne designed by Victor & Rolf a pre-fashion week party was held at the W Hotel’s Whiskey Blue. I’m not one to pass up champagne in any incarnation, but the upside bottle is pretty cool.
I’d eaten before, which was a shame because there was tons of food that looked very good.The bottle’s something out of a a Michel Gondry film where the top (which is the bottom) looks like the giant wrapped cork of a champagne bottle.

Juices

February 28, 2008

In the lieu of the healthy food marathons that are planned, I finally made it to The Juices Fountain in Hollywood. I’ve always known it as Juices, but it’s called Juice on the sign…
Back when I worked in Hollywood I always wanted to try the little stand on Vine, but never made my way over there. They moved to a slightly larger location on Hollywood Blvd and I passed up free lunch at Katsuya to try it.The Fruit Rainbow is a simple $3.75 blend of watermelon, pineapple, strawberry, blackberry, orange and banana. The prices rival other juice bars in town, with a sandwich added for a total of $7.50. More fun than Subway or Jamba and probably healthier.

The Academy Awards

February 25, 2008

If you’re invited to the Oscars you work in the film industry and thus aren’t phased by seeing celebrities… supposedly. It’s therefore bad form (and prohibited) to take cameraphone pictures during, before and after the show. It’s not enforced but I also had to maintain a little professionalism so I didn’t take pictures of all of the tray-passed appetizers before the show. At $750 per ticket for non-nominated guests, I also didn’t attend the Governor’s Ball.
I did however, sneak this picture of Daniel Day Lewis and Wolfgang Puck.The food was what you’d expect for a party of 3,000 and not nearly as fancy as the Governor’s Ball’s Spicy Tuna in Sesame Miso Cone, Mini Kobe Cheeseburgers with Remoulade Tomato Goat Cheese Tart, Miso-Glazed Black Cod on Rice Cracker and Spicy Chicken Mango Rice Paper Rolls.
We had the more pedestrian bite-sized tomatoes with truffle goat cheese, spicy tuna rolls, jidori chicken, red pepper hummus, seared yellowtail and baba ganoush. Some were served on rice crackers and some on tortilla chips. The shrimp ceviche in a shot glass was cumbersome, especially with a tortilla chip in the top- another example of the expanding need for one-handed meals.

Course One of the Cheese Food Marathon

February 20, 2008

As part of another project (you’ll notice the difference in quality of photography below) I’ll be going on cheese food marathons over the next few weeks. This is the first post in the series.
The day started with a Tuna Melt from CJ’s Cafe.Last time we were there it looked really good and proved to be upon finally tasting it. It’s one of the few times where the low quality of the ingredients (mass produced white bread, frozen french fries, industrial mayonnaise) actuality contribute to the greatness of the meal. I guess it’s the unhealthiness of these ingredients- hitting directly on the salty, sweet, greasy flavor sensors in your brain.
In an effort to explore the top cheese shops in LA we started with Cube. I’ve been a fan for a while for their extensive list of cheeses.We sat outside and were served a starter plate of Ubriaco al Prosecco. Simple, easy- a palate cleanser of cheese. The main cheese plate from Cube featured a variety of cheese including a hard (vintage 5 year cow’s milk gouda from Holland), a bloomy rind trio (cow’s milk, goat’s milk, créme fraice from California) and a blue (Tilston’s Point cow’s milk from Wisconsin).The gouda was paired with pecans, the trio was paired with hazelnut créme (créme de noisette) and the blue was paired with New York basswood honey. I liked the trio, but not with the hazelnut. My favorite was the blue.
Next was Joans on Third for another cheese plate. We kept the cheeses similar to compare and contrast. This time hard (Beemster Gouda, cow’s milk), blend (Robiola due Latte, cow and sheep’s milk from Piedmont) and blue (Crater Lake, raw cow’s milk from Central Point, OR).
Pairings included fig paste, Marcona almonds and honey. The gouda had a much more defined flavor than Cube’s. The texture of the Robiola was exquisite. As I’m a fan of blues, the Crater Lake was also one of my favorites.
Joans has a such a vast array of products in their marketplace that it’s hard not to choose it as the main place to buy cheese in LA- it’s also two minutes from my house. I do like the ease of Cube though, with their BYOB policy, long menu of cooked dishes, easy parking and access.
Stay tuned for much more from Silverlake to Beverly Hills and others in between.

La Buca Design Party

February 19, 2008

The decor of a restaurant isn’t always something worthy of a party, but in the case of venerable Los Angeles eatery Osteria La Buca it is. La Buca previously had one of the smallest dining rooms in LA, making reservations difficult and privacy impossible. The small space used to be a turn-off for some diners. The food always was terrific, with mama churning out simple pastas and pizzas in portions that left you stuffed, but some just thought it wasn’t worth the hassle.
Many rejoiced when word spread that the space next door would be turned into a proper sized restaurant and many eagerly awaited the opening. Finally last night I was able to see the fully functioning space (a few weeks ago I ate there but one stairwell was closed and the current lobby/former dining room was not complete).A lot of people have already talked about the wine bottle chandeliers. Under them, the downstairs bar/dining area is comfortable and open. The lobby features pictures hanging across the wall where the kitchen once opened into the dining room. The upstairs is the real draw though, with an open skylight, large fireplace and voyeuristic views of the dining room below. My only complaint was smelling like smoke from the fireplace.
Food included bruschetta, mozzarella wrapped in prosciutto, ham and cheese sandwiches, fried risotto balls, pizzas (cheese, artichoke, sausage, pepperoni) and eggplant parmesan.
Mama held court, greeting guests and spreading her Italian mama-ness throughout the party.

Look Mom- No Hands

February 15, 2008

Because America isn’t lazy and fat enough already, fast food chains are <a href=”http://www.cjonline.com/stories/010208/opi_230824497.shtml&#8221; target=”_blank”><span style=”color: rgb(238, 44, 44);”>focusing on ways to eliminate the use of two hands while eating</span></a>. “Last year McDonald’s started selling chicken and other stuff wrapped in tortillas. This product was a response to consumer appetites for something to eat between meals and with one hand on the steering wheel.”
At 300 calories each they’re meant to be eaten between meals (to help diminish your appetite?). Not the most scientific method of weightloss, but they’re probably healthier than Taco Bell’s <a href=”http://www.fourthmeal.com/&#8221; target=”_blank”><span style=”color: rgb(238, 44, 44);”>4th Meal</span></a> concept.

So it was funny when the <a href=”http://link.brightcove.com/services/link/bcpid1403465200/bctid1405714249&#8243; target=”_blank”><span style=”color: rgb(238, 44, 44);”>only complaint</span></a> about <a href=”http://www.seriouseats.com/required_eating/2008/02/bbq-chicken-all-in-one-chicken-nugget-drink-cup.html&#8221; target=”_blank”><span style=”color: rgb(238, 44, 44);”>this genius idea</span></a> was that you need to hands to eat it. It’s a cup that contains both the meal and the soda together. Perhaps if there was a spout the chicken bits could be poured directly in your mouth….

"Look Mom- No Hands"

February 15, 2008

Because America isn’t lazy and fat enough already, fast food chains are focusing on ways to eliminate the use of two hands while eating. “Last year McDonald’s started selling chicken and other stuff wrapped in tortillas. This product was a response to consumer appetites for something to eat between meals and with one hand on the steering wheel.”
At 300 calories each they’re meant to be eaten between meals (to help diminish your appetite?). Not the most scientific method of weightloss, but they’re probably healthier than Taco Bell’s 4th Meal concept.

So it was funny when the only complaint about this genius idea was that you need two hands to eat it. It’s a cup that contains both the meal and the soda together. Perhaps if there was a spout the chicken bits could be poured directly in your mouth….

Happy Valentine’s Day

February 14, 2008

Recipe and story behind Madame Chocolat can be found at Just One Plate.

The Forgot-It’s-February Food Marathon

February 13, 2008

With the unseasonably warm weather (read: inconveniently truthful global warming) we headed beachward for a day of eating at summery restaurants with outdoor seating.I’m not sure why I felt like this was summery but we started with Samosa House, the Indian market/restaurant for a quick bite. After checking out the goods we opted for more than just a samosa and added spinach, cauliflower in yogurt sauce and their house specialty jackfruit.More than any other food that “tastes like chicken,” the jackfruit literally has the look and consistency of chicken. We washed it down with a thick mango lassi.Next stop was Tacomiendo. Seated outside in full summer mode, we noticed an interesting advertisement under the “Open” sign.
I know Kenny G is in with Starbucks and Pinkberry, but Tacomiendo too?Just one carnitas taco with chips, salsa and guacamole was a perfect mid-marathon meal. We always get the same thing at Taco-miendo, which is unfortunate because they have a long menu with a lot of good choices. If only it was a little closer to home.
The final stop was the most summery of all- Diddy Riese. One mint chocolate chip ice cream sandwich with chocolate cookies and one cappuccino chip on chocolate chip cookies later and we success’full’y rolled ourselves home.
After living in Wisconsin, I never take LA’s amazing weather for granted. Nor it’s food.

There’s a list of upcoming food marathons planned including the the cupcake marathon (because someone has to support all 500 designer cupcakes shops in LA), the sandwich marathon, the under $2 marathon and the LA Marathon food marathon amongst the many others.


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