Archive for the ‘Events’Category

Neapolitan heaven at DeSano Pizza Bakery + pizza making class

Margherita pizza

Margherita pizza

Do you love pizza? Like, really, really good pizza that has the perfect balance of toppings and cheese on a crispy-but-chewy crust? Then we share this love, you and me. So let me tell you about DeSano Pizza Bakery, a Neapolitan pizza joint in East Hollywood where you can not only eat these delicious pies but also learn how to make them.

Tomorrow, July 12, DeSano’s proprietors, Italy natives Marino Monferrato, formerly general manager at Cecconi’s, and pizzaiolo Massimiliano Di Lascio, will host a pizza-making class that includes tastings and your own dough to take home. Maybe you’ll get to make the classic Margherita (pictured above), with San Marzano tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella, basil and garlic. Or maybe you’ll make the San Gennaro, a sweet-spicy-tangy combination of sausage, peppadews, buffalo mozzarella, garlic and caramelized onions.

San Gennaro pizza

San Gennaro pizza

You’ll use ingredients sourced from the Campania region of Southern Italy, and you’ll be firing up these pies in one of the restaurant’s four 6,000-pound, 900-degree wood-fired ovens imported from Italy and traditionally named after Italian saints.

DeSano's pizza ovens

DeSano’s pizza ovens

While you’re there, try a calzone. The Vesuvio, with spicy salame, prosciutto, pepperoni and garlic, is a meat lover’s dream.

Vesuvio calzone

Vesuvio calzone

For dessert, get a housemade cannoli or biscotti, or a small-batch gelato made by local Alessandro Fontana (his is the recipe over at Cecconi’s, too). Or get more than one; no one will judge. The blood orange sorbet is amazingly creamy, given its lack of dairy.

Ricotta cannoli, left, and chocolate cannoli

Ricotta cannoli, left, and chocolate cannoli

Blood orange sorbet, left, and salted caramel gelato

Blood orange sorbet, left, and salted caramel gelato

This is the third location for DeSano Pizza Bakery (the other two are in Nashville and Charleston, South Carolina). DeSano’s space is cavernous, so you can bring a bunch of friends, order a bunch of pies, and eat them with abandon — hopefully with a bottle of something Italian soon (wine and beer will be served here as soon as the license gets worked out — a notoriously difficult process).

More information on the Neapolitan pizza-making class:

Saturday, July 12
3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.
$40 per person, which includes personal instruction from Massimiliano DiLascio, a tasting of the pizzas prepared and dough to take home.
Call (323) 913-7000 for reservations (ask for Marino Monferrato)

DeSano Pizza Bakery
4959 Santa Monica Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90029

11

07 2014

New hotel, new experiences at Loews Hollywood

Dinner on the Stage

Dinner on the Stage

With a recent $31 million transformation, the Loews Hollywood Hotel, located at the Hollywood & Highland complex where the Academy Awards ceremony is held, offers a breath of fresh air compared to its former incarnation as the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel. Now the Loews is sleek and modern, befitting any celebrity — or anyone who wants to feel like one.

To that end, Loews Hollywood offers a unique Dinner on the Stage experience — private meals made by Wolfgang Puck Catering served on the Dolby Theater stage complete with decor and live entertainment. This is really designed for large groups (the stage is big!) and will run you at least $50,000. I had the opportunity to experience this, and it really is a cool thing to do. How can you beat having dinner on the same stage where so many Oscar winners stood? The Dolby is a looker, too. Not a bad backdrop.

While Dinner on the Stage will cost you a pretty penny, another unique Loews Hollywood experience is much more affordable. The Top of the World experience, which can include private receptions, marriage proposals and photo shoots, take place on the hotel’s rooftop helipad with 360-degree views of Los Angeles. The best part? You can take an open-air yoga class here once a month during the summer for $45. Just don’t get blown away doing that warrior pose, OK? (Actually, I’ve been up there, and it’s not as windy as you’d think.)

Note: The Dinner on the Stage meal was complimentary. 

21

06 2014

Broadway Bites is back in NYC

This post is written by ShopEatSleep contributor Deanna Ting, a New York-based writer and editor who hails from Los Angeles. She is a seasoned travel, lifestyle and fashion writer, having written for publications such as TravelAge West, Luxury Travel Advisor, Los Angeles magazine and WSAToday (a magazine that was entirely devoted to shoes). These days, you can find her working as a managing editor/senior editor for Incentive and Successful Meetings magazines, as well as scouring New York–and the globe–for her next favorite meal. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter at @deanna421.

Onigiri by Tampopo at Broadway Bites

Onigiri by Tampopo at Broadway Bites

Given the downright nasty winter that New York City endured this year, the return of warmer weather–and all that comes with it–is a more than welcome sight. One great mainstay of summer is the return of outdoor food events like Broadway Bites, a pop-up, outdoor culinary market that occupies a prime location in the shadow of the Empire State Building.

Located at Greeley Square Park, between 32nd and 34th streets on Broadway, Broadway Bites serves up a collection of 30 different vendors selling fare as varied as handmade chocolates (Nunu) and Japanese takoyaki (Mimi & Coco) to Michelin-starred pizza (Roberta’s) and “California street food” (Jicama). If Broadway Bites seems familiar it’s because it’s the work of the same folks behind the wildly popular Madison Square Eats, Urban Space. Last year, Broadway Bites debuted for the very first time in late October and now it has returned with a new summer lineup.

While some favorites have remained–including Roberta’s, makers of that aforementioned Michelin-starred pizza–there are also a number of newbies that are worth a try. Here’s a look at just a few:

Onigiri by Tampopo: Onigiri, a traditional Japanese rice ball wrapped in nori, is deceptively small but incredibly filling. Many onigiri that I’ve had before have lacked in flavor, with a disproportionate amount of white rice overwhelming whatever tiny morsel–ume, salmon, chicken and the like–was wrapped inside. Tampopo’s version is the exception: The salmon scallion onigiri that I had was so flavorful. With each bite I could taste the lightly seasoned rice, flecks of bright green scaillions and fresh salmon pieces; I never had to search for that one tiny morsel–it was already in every bite. A variety of unique flavor combinations are available (ummm cheddar shiso, anyone?), so save multiple visits to try out each one.

PalenqueHaving traveled to Colombia last summer and eaten more than my own weight in arepas while I was there, I’ve longed to find another arepa as good as the ones I had over there. While Palenque’s aren’t quite exactly like the ones I had in Colombia, they’re pretty darn close. Arepas come in three varieties–classic corn, and quinoa and multigrain for the more health-conscious–and, like miniature pizzas, they are topped with generous heapings of Oaxacan cheese, savory sauces and toppings of your choice, like angus beef and marinated chicken. The chicken arepa, composed entirely of white meat, was never dry and was the perfect mix of salty and savory.    

And here’s a look at a few of my favorite mainstays:

Chutney: I love Indian food, and I also happen to love Mexican food, so this mash-up, while a little bit out of the ordinary, really works. The chicken tikka taco was great–really flavorful, with just the right amount of tikka masala and juicy bits of chicken. Bonus points for the fact that all tacos are made fresh to order. There are also two vegetarian options available. One taco is $4 while an order of three, a good-size meal, is $10.

Chutney tacos at Broadway Bites

Chutney tacos at Broadway Bites

Red Hook Lobster Pound: I like to judge my lobster rolls by two main factors–the buttery-ness of the bread and the quality of the lobster itself–and in both of those categories, Red Hook Lobster Pound is a winner in my books. I also happen to love the fact that Red Hook’s lobster isn’t drenched in mayo or any other unnecessary dressings–they simply let the lobster, and the roll, speak for themselves.

There are so many other great finds to be found at Broadway Bites, so do yourself a favor and start exploring. Stop by now through Aug. 1, every day from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

15

06 2014

National Doughnut Day is better with bourbon

BLD national doughnut day

BLD doughnut. Photo courtesy of BLD restaurant.

Chef Neal Fraser’s BLD is celebrating National Doughnut Day this Friday, June 6, with a special doughnut and bourbon pairing event. I’m not sure anything could sound better.

Pastry Chef Mariah Swan’s doughnuts are amazing, so to add my favorite spirit, bourbon, to the mix is almost too much to handle. But handle it you shall, if you want what promises to be an epic National Doughnut Day experience.

Here’s the menu:

Rocky Road Doughnut: salted caramel glaze, toasted almonds, cinnamon marshmallows, chocolate sauce
Bourbon Pairing: Elijah Craig 12 Year

Spiced Orange Caramel Doughnut: cinnamon and ginger spiced orange caramel, braised farmers market cherry
Bourbon Pairing: Basil Hayden’s

Coffee Cardamom Doughnut: chicory coffee cardamom custard filling
Bourbon Pairing: Crater Lake Rye

Honeyed Chocolate Doughnut: chocolate honey glaze, candied grapefruit peel
Bourbon Pairing: Bernheim Original Kentucky Wheat Whiskey

Butterscotch Toffee Doughnut: muscovado butterscotch custard, chopped toffee
Bourbon Pairing: Evan Williams Single Barrel

One doughnut: $3/$6 with bourbon
Three doughnuts: $9/$18 with bourbon
Five doughnuts: $15/$24 with bourbon

BLD restaurant
7450 Beverly Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90036
323.930.9744
Doughnuts and bourbon available 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. on June 6

03

06 2014

Celebrate 100 years of Beverly Hills with Suite 100

Beverly Hills Hotel Golden Age suite. Photo by Peter Vitale and Beverly Hills Hotel.

Beverly Hills Hotel Golden Age suite. Photo by Peter Vitale and Beverly Hills Hotel.

Beverly Hills turns 100 years old this year, and to celebrate, the city has teamed up with some of its most luxurious hotels to offer special experiences.

Through the Suite 100 program, five hotels — the Beverly Hills Hotel, Beverly Hilton, Peninsula Beverly Hills, L’Ermitage Beverly Hills and Montage Beverly Hills — have each redesigned a suite to reflect a moment in time from the past 100 years. The 1940s through the 1990s are represented (the 1980s conveniently have been left out, which is probably for the best), with homages to 1940s film noir and 1970s Studio 54 included. My favorites include the Beverly Hills Hotel’s 1950s Golden Age suite (pictured above) and the Peninsula’s 1990s Birth of Modern Glamour suite.

Even if you can’t afford to stay in one of these suites, you can experience a little of this nostalgia with special throwback menus at the hotel restaurants. From June 1 to Sept. 30, try the lobster thermidor at the Montage’s Parq Bar, the truffle mac and cheese at the Peninsula’s Club Bar, or the Tahitian vanilla and sour cream cheesecake at the Beverly Hilton’s Lobby Lounge and Circa 55.

Beverly Hilton cheesecake

Beverly Hilton cheesecake

There are other ways to celebrate Beverly Hills’ centennial that include shopping, too. Check out Love Beverly Hills for more information.

Note: The menu tasting was hosted.

31

05 2014

Ricardo Zarate’s Halloween parties at Picca, Mo-Chica & Paiche

Mo-Chica's Pisco Sour

Mo-Chica’s Pisco Sour

If you’re anything like me, you’re not that into Halloween. But if, like me, you like a good party with good food and drink, then Chef Ricardo Zarate’s restaurants, conveniently located through Los Angeles, will be the places to be.

Picca
9575 W. Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90035
310.277.0133
9 p.m. to 11 p.m.

*Welcome shot for those dressed in costume
*$20 open bar for those who enjoyed dinner earlier in the evening; $25 open bar for general public (includes Pisco Halloween Punch, Peruvian beer and house wines)
*Costume contest, “Thriller” dance competition, bobbing for apples, receive 20 percent off New Year’s Eve dinner, “Spooky Gift Bags,” and surprise grand prize

Mo-Chica
517 W. 7th St.
Los Angeles, CA 90014
213.622.3744

11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.

*Welcome shot for those dressed in costume
*$25 open bar including Peruvian Pisco Halloween Punch, Peruvian beer and house wines

2:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.

*20 percent off entire bill during happy hour
*Costume contest, dance competition, gift certificates and “Spooky Gift Bags”

Paiche
13488 Maxella Ave.
Marina Del Rey, CA 90292
310.893.6100

2:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.

*$25 open bar with special-themed cocktails, beer and house wine

9 p.m. to midnight

*666 menu featuring 6 dishes for $6 each
*Raffle, costume contest, one-hour mixology class with Mixologist Deysi Alvarez, one-hour cooking class with Ricardo Lopez, and more

30

10 2013

Churchill, Hudson celebrate anniversaries this week

Westside Negroni at The Churchill.

Westside Negroni at The Churchill. Photo by Annabelle Abouab.

On Thursday, Oct. 17, stop by The Churchill on West Third Street for a combined celebration in honor of the restaurant’s 2nd anniversary as well as The Hudson’s 4th anniversary. Starting at 10 p.m., you’ll be treated to passed appetizers from Churchill Executive Chef Michael Bryant, half-off fall cocktails from mixologist Karen Grill and sounds from KCRW’s Garth Trinidad. With Bryant and Grill behind the eats, this is sure to be a tasty affair.

Set to be on the passed-app menu:

*Ahi tuna with cucumber and harissa aioli
*Mini tacos with fresh snapper ceviche, pico de gallo and guacamole
*Beef tartare
*Roasted market veggie kabobs
*Parmesan gougères
*Angus beef sliders

Grill’s new fall cocktails will be half-off at $6 and include:

*24th 1/2 Century: scotch, Punt e Mes, cacao, fresh lemon juice
*Mezcalifornia Dreamin’: mezcal, Cointreau, sage liquer, fresh lime juice
*Westside Negroni: London Dry gin, east india sherry, Aperol, lemon zest
*Caipeira: cachaca, pear brandy, lime segments, Peychauds bitters
*High Tea: tequila, earl grey tea, rhubarb liquer, orange bitters, fresh lemon juice, soda
*Tiki-Tiki Tembo: aged rum, Cynar, pineapple juice, orgeat, lime, grated nutmeg
*Churchill Manhattan: rye whiskey, vermouth, Angostura bitters
*Lily of the Valley: gin, aloe liquer, agave rose soda, fresh lime juice

Bryant recently took over for chef Bruce Kalman, who left to start his own pickle company, and Grill has taken over for Mia Sarazen. I recently tried both Bryant’s food and Grill’s drinks (the 24th 1/2 Century was my favorite, followed closely by the Westside Negroni, which is less bitter than traditional negronis) and can attest to their quality. Should be a good time!

The Churchill
8384 W. 3rd St.
Los Angeles, CA 90048
10 p.m. to close

15

10 2013

This year’s Labor Day Sales!

J.Crew denim labor day sales

J.Crew denim. From J.Crew.

Don’t miss out on the long weekend’s Labor Day sales!

Gap
Adult t-shirts $10 and baby tees $8 Thursday, Aug. 29, only
Up to 40 percent off select styles through Monday, Sept. 2
In stores and online

OpenSky
85 percent off clearance

Banana Republic
40 percent off purchase online and in stores with code BRWEEKEND through Monday, Sept. 2
Extra 20 percent off when you open a BananaCard in store by Monday, Sept. 2

Old Navy
30 percent off entire store or 35 percent off when you use your Old Navy, Gap or Banana Card online (with code SPREE) and in stores
40 percent off all adult Famous jeans (not combinable with other discounts) in store only
Through Monday, Sept. 2

Anthropologie
New items added to sale, and extra 25 percent off home sale items through Monday, Sept. 2

Diane von Furstenberg
30 percent off pre-fall 2013 collection online and in stores through Monday, Sept. 2

J.Crew
25 percent off denim Thursday, Aug. 29, only
Extra 30 percent off final sale items in stores and online with code HELLO30
Free shipping on orders $100+

J.Crew Factory
40 to 50 percent off everything online and in stores through Monday, Sept. 2

West Elm
15 percent off sofas, sectionals and upholstered accent chairs
15 percent off mirrors
20 percent off laundry and cleaning
Extra 30 percent off pillows and throw blanket markdowns with code XTRAPILLOWS
Up to 30 percent off bedding
30 percent off select rugs
Online and in stores through Monday, Sept. 2

C. Wonder
25 percent off full-price items online and in store with code LABORDAY through Monday, Sept. 2

Ann Taylor
30 percent off full-price items
Extra 40 percent off sale items
In stores and online

Barnes & Noble
15 percent off any item in stores and online with code BWJQV61LMZ6E3 through Monday, Sept. 2

H&M
Items available in store and online starting at $5 through Monday, Sept. 2

Lifebooker
Extra 20 percent off Loot with code LABORDAY

Travelocity
Extra 15 percent off hotel bookings with code GOWEEKEND15E Friday, Aug. 30, only

Gilt City
20 percent off with code THANKS20 through Monday, Sept. 2

Piperlime
25 percent off full-price women’s jeans with code DENIM through Tuesday, Sept. 3

Topshop
Extra 20 percent off sale items

Macy’s
Extra 20 percent off (15 percent off home, excluding furniture and mattresses) with code DEALS through Monday, Sept. 2
Free shipping on orders $99+

Williams-Sonoma
Extra 15 percent off clearance items with code SAVENOW
Free shipping with code LABORDAY
15 percent off table top with code LABORDAY
20 percent off cooking tools with code TOOLS20
20 percent off soap and lotion
Up to 75 percent off outdoor
20 percent off Williams-Sonoma cookware
In stores and online through Monday, Sept. 2

29

08 2013

Celebrate National Junk Food Day in style

Junk Food Platter at L.A. Market by Kerry Simon for National Junk Food Day

Junk Food Platter at L.A. Market by Kerry Simon. Photo courtesy of L.A. Market.

National Junk Food Day is Sunday, July 21, and it’s the best snack food day of them all. You know why? Because it’s all-encompassing. You could eat just about anything to celebrate!

L.A. Market by Kerry Simon at the J.W. Marriott Los Angeles at L.A. LIVE gets it. That’s why the restaurant offers the Junk Food Platter ($17) with coconut Bounty, Snickers cake, banana Nutella macaroons, baby churros, red velvet whoopie pies, brownies, cookies and cotton candy (and maybe popcorn, if you’re lucky?).

And then, because you’re already at a hotel, why not crash in one of the J.W. Marriott’s rooms with views of the downtown skyline? There’s also a rooftop pool to lounge by while enjoying even more junk food, if you’re so inclined.

So pig out! Why not? It’s summer.

J.W. Marriott Junior Suite

J.W. Marriott Junior Suite. Photo courtesy of J.W. Marriott.

20

07 2013

My favorite Oscars look wasn’t on a nominee

Stacey Keibler in Naeem Khan at the 85th Annual Academy Awards. Photo from FabSugar.

Stacy Keibler in Naeem Khan at the 85th Annual Academy Awards. From FabSugar.

I know everyone is talking about Jennifer Lawrence’s dress (and her stumble up the stairs to receive her award, which just seemed so fitting for her — in a good way), and Anne Hathaway’s nipple dress (why would you wear a dress with darts placed there?), but my favorite dress of the evening was hands-down Stacy Keibler’s Naeem Khan gown. With its head-to-toe sequins and well-placed patterns, Keibler looked positively statuesque. And her date wasn’t bad-looking, either.

George Clooney and Keibler. From Huffington Post.

George Clooney and Keibler. From Huffington Post.

 

 

 

 

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25

02 2013