AN EXQUISITE AFTERNOON IN THE SOUTH OF FRANCE

It was midday, midweek.  It was going to be a summit of two PR professionals, long overdue for a first meeting.  What better setting than the L.A. home of the gentleman that is considered by many to be among the most esteemed and acclaimed chefs in the world, Thomas Keller.  I arrived early to enjoy the courtyard, the February sunshine, and the people watching that Beverly Hills always provides.  And, of course, to check in on the many social media platforms that always manage to consume the first fifteen minutes of every dinner.

The meeting was perfect, my peer an amazing woman with extraordinary talents in this industry.  Fortunately, we do not compete for clients, which made lunch all the more enjoyable. It didn’t hurt that it was just hours before the Oscars, and we were surrounded by the likes of Harvey Weinstein and Kelsey Grammer.  Nor did it hurt that neither of us had any problem whatsoever feasting in front of the other.  And feast we did.

Upon entering Bouchon at lunch time, you are greeted by a phalanx of hosts, managers, and servers.  As it was a work day, everyone at the table was sipping iced tea, my only regret of the meal.  A nice glass of rose, and I would have been transported right back to the South of France, ensconced seaside, enjoying meals that burst with the flavors of the sea and the skill of the chef.  This day, conversation flowed easily, and we ordered a new course as each course was served, with food arriving over the next several hours.

Per wikipedia, “bouchon is a type of restaurant found in Lyon, France that serves traditional Lyonnaise cuisine, such as sausages, duck pâté or roast pork. Compared to other forms of French cooking such as nouvelle cuisine, the dishes are quite fatty and heavily oriented around meat. There are approximately twenty officially certified traditional bouchons, but a larger number of establishments describe themselves using the term.

Typically, the emphasis in a bouchon is not on haute cuisine but, rather, a convivial atmosphere and a personal relationship with the owner.”

Hence, bread that arrives atop the paper table cloth, along with a small round of softened butter.  We enjoyed two before ordering.  Let’s simply say it was pretty damn delicious.

Course after course after course then arrived…

The magic of meals such as this arrives only with good people and good conversation, where the joy of the table is shared in such a way that minutes and hours simply drift away.  Food arrives, scrutinized and discussed, then quietly savored until, gradually, conversation resumes and someone lifts a menu to order the next dish.  It rarely happens, this magic.  On this gorgeous, sunny Los Angeles day in February, however, magic arrived.  At the table.   With good people and good conversation. Good food. Good memories. Thanks, Thomas.  It was exquisite…

BOUCHON BEVERLY HILLS

Filed under: DCPR dine out series — admin

CIAO, OSCAR!

LUCA ON SUNSET Celebrates Oscar Sunday

It’s Oscar weekend.  Joan Rivers is busy with an emergency touch up.  Stylists all over town are suffering panic attacks.  The ladies of the red carpet haven’t eaten solid food in weeks.   And we mere mortals… absolutely cannot get enough!

Of course, critiquing of red carpet faux pas and mocking acceptance speeches gone awry takes energy and creativity.  Los Angeles sarcasm does not arrive easily, and is not performed well on an empty stomach.  Enter Luca On Sunset. This weekend, the West Hollywood eatery that has quickly become a neighborhood destination is rejoicing in all things Oscar.

First, for every dollar spent in the dining room on Oscar Sunday, guests will receive a gift certificate of the same denomination to return to the restaurant in the future.  The red carpet arrivals will stream live, as will the awards ceremonies.  Guests will be given ballots to choose winners, and for each winner correctly selected, Luca and The Mann’s Chinese Theatre will award the guest with two tickets to the theatre.  You may never pay for another movie ticket in 2012…or 2013.

If, on the other hand, you must run in to pick up a gorgeous dessert for a hostess gift, a sandwich for the sofa, or dinner for the family, you will not miss a minute of the action, whether it is Miss Rivers unknowingly insulting a tween starlet, or Harvey Weinstein pretending that he didn’t just purchase an award.  You’re guaranteed to enjoy every salivating minute.

ABOUT LUCA ON SUNSET

Opened recently on a high profile stretch of Sunset Boulevard by the gregarious Luca Giorgetti as a follow up to his long successful Beverly Hills lunch destination, Basic Bites, Luca On Sunset is a casual dining destination featuring a healthful California twist on the foods and recipes of his Tuscan childhood.  Recently expanding hours to include a dinner menu, Luca’s menus offer a unique selection of Panini, salads, pizzas, pastas, and dinner entrees, as well as a boutique selection of wine and beer.   Luca on Sunset has rapidly built a cult following for its freshly pressed juice and coffee bar offerings, with lines forming continuously throughout the morning hours for the restaurant’s healthful start to the day (and quite possibly the most delicious croissant in Los Angeles.  YES, we said it! …More to come on those croissants).

LUCA ON SUNSET

7950 Sunset Boulevard (bet Fairfax & Crescent Heights)

LA, CA 90046

323.822.2900 | www.lucaonsunset.com

Enter on Hayworth for free validated parking

Filed under: NEWS — admin

A NEW CHEFF, A NEW MENU, A NEW HAPPY HOUR

URBANO PIZZA BAR

The New Chef, The New Market Driven Menus &

The New Pizza Happy Hours

Chef Bruce Kalman quietly assumed the Executive Chef position for downtown’s bustling Urbano Pizza Bar, bringing with him a market driven menu of pizzas, with a new focus on fresh vegetables and a selection of market produced antipasti and charcuterie.

Most recently, Chef kalman is recognizable as the opening Chef of Santa Monica’s Misfit Bar, where he became a mainstay at the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market.  The proximity to the market allowed him to build an unusual bond with the many farmers and purveyors that frequent the market, building a unique network of suppliers virtually unheard of in an urban setting.

Chef Kalman’s astonishingly affordable menus are now in being served at Urbano Pizza Bar, with offerings such as “Pulled To Order” Fresh Mozzarella ($8); Chef’s selections of Salumi ($12) and AntiPasti ($6); Roasted Garlic ($4); Leafy Broccoli ($7); Heirloom Fingerling Potatoes ($6); and Braised Greens with house smoked bacon  & Lodi beans ($6).  As well, Kaman has added a new selection of vegan cheese and gluten free pizza crust, upon request, all available with a wide selection of fresh vegetable toppings.

To kick off the new menu, Urbano offers “Pizza Happy Hour” – the perfect respite for downtown meetings, greetings and after work imbibing.  Monday through Friday, 3pm until 7pm, Urbano offers all pizza at half off the dinner menu pricing, along with all draft beer for a mere $4.  The Pizza Happy Hour is by far the best deal in town, as Chef Kalman has intentionally created his menus to offer affordable, delicious, and healthful options.

URBANO PIZZA BAR | 6th & Hope (630 W. 6th St)

Los Angeles, CA | 90017

213.614.1900 | www.urbanopizzabar.com

 

$5 Validated Parking is available just across the street

(at 611 W. 6th Street)

Filed under: NEWS — admin

Warning: Unknown: open(/home/content/03/3403103/tmp/sess_25n3o7g2t93i388it88o8vukv0, O_RDWR) failed: No such file or directory (2) in Unknown on line 0

Warning: Unknown: Failed to write session data (files). Please verify that the current setting of session.save_path is correct () in Unknown on line 0