Eating Italy presents a culinary stroll through Testaccio
By Patti Covello Pietschmann
By Patti Covello Pietschmann
A glass of Santa Barbara Rose or me and a martini for Richard before dinner at Cavatina
(That’s me with Chef Turano)
Who says hotel restaurants can’t be great. Stand up and show yourself because Cavatina at the Sunset Marquis in West Hollywood, California, is about as good as is gets. A recent dinner in the attractive open-air patio setting, on a balmy starry night, proved more delicious that one two nights early at Wolfgang Puck’s famed Beverly Hills Spago. And with much less pretense and table hopping by celebrities who go to Puck’s place to be seen and work the room.
There is no diner discrimination at Cavatina even though the hotel attracts some of biggest names in the music industry. Everyone is treated equal and just about every table under the sky is a good one. The food is fabulous under the guidance of rising star Chef Chris Turano, who has been at the restaurant two months, and veteran ace Executive Chef Michael Schlow one of America’s culinary industry’s most influential and respected chefs who works magic capturing a variety of global cuisines.
We went to Cavatina explicitly for Chef Turano’s dineLARestaurantWeek price fixed menu. The amiable new comer is wowing the crowd with amazing dishes. His food is so good we really need to go back for more. But last night Richard and I were there purposely to for his restaurant week offering. If you aren’t familiar dineLARestaurantWeek is held seasonally at participating restaurants where chefs create two and three course lunches and dinner at reasonable prices intended to introduce their establishments to folks who may not otherwise get there. It is also a huge success. This year’s foodie fest started on July 18 and goes through the end of the month.
Back at our lovely table for two at Cavatina, Chef Turano’s dineaLA offering is a palate pleasing three course meal with two choices of starters such as this burrata with Marcona almonds, beets and kale.Check out the whole dineLA menu below:
We ordered one each of the appetizers which were spectacular and both desserts which were to diet for, so yummy.As you can see the tab is a mere $49 a person in a million dollar outdoor setting. Of course we had wine and Richard his usual dry martini so that adds to bill but happily so. Chef also sent over two of his signature plates,one of which was an amazing albacore poke at just made my taste buds dance for joy, ditto for a bruschetta with shave Italian summer truffles, moma mia. This guy can cook and create.
Cavatina’s regular menu lists several small plates that range in price from $12 to $19 such as brussel sprouts mixed with bacon, jalapeno and kumquat that was simply delicious. Then there’s black snapper crudo, grilled octopus, pork belly, lamb meatballs and creamy Burrata worth starting off with or making an entire meal of.
Nothing’s finer than dinner al fresco on these balmy summer nights in LA especially if you’re in the mood for something romantic and well some truly top quality cuisine. There is also an attractive bar for before and after drinks manned by ace barkeeps. Although the dineLARestaurantWeek ends July 31,you will always find foodie happiness at Cavatina, I promise. And, the service was (and is always) exceptional, too.
CCavatina is situated in a lovely nook on the property of hip, happening, Rock ‘n Roll-centric Sunset Marquis in a little WeHo neighborhood at 200 Alta Loma Road. For reservations call 310-358-3759.
by Patti Covello Pietschmann
He’s one of three(that include the talented Beverly Gannon and Peter Merriman) of my favorite chefs in Hawaii and one of the nicest people I know. Chef Mavro has been treating visitors and locals, including my husband Richard and I, to Oahu to his epic epicurean talents for years first at hotels and since at his long standing eponymous restaurant that sits hidden-but not undiscovered– just outside of Waikiki. If you happen to be on Oahu starting tomorrow, July 15, make it a point to book at table as chef is creating some his favorites from Provence that evoke the magic , flavors and aromas found there plus the sound of the old port of Marseilles, fish mongers, boats traffic, seagulls and especially in the back country “the song of the cicadas!”
“I promise, when you enjoy my selection of classics from Provence, you are going to hear the song of the cicadas…,” Mavro wrote in an email today. For a short time, the new Provence menu will replace our Hana Hou 4 course menu at the same price.
Persillade of Supions
The menu starts with a persillade of supions (baby squids)…this is a very popular dish that you can find on the menu of every single restaurant surrounding the old port of Marseilles.
Supions are baby squids also called souppions in Provence; spelled like that seems even more delicious. They are sautéed in extra virgin olive oil with shallots, garlic, one ton of parsley, served as soon they are cooked…divine!
With Jonathan our chef de cuisine we had a lot of fun working on these recipes that for once are not the fruit of our own culinary craziness. Anyway, this was going to be too simple so with decided to serve our souppions with a salted cod (morue) brandade…Now we are talking. This is difficult enough to make us happy…don’t try the brandade at home…looks easy…it’s not.
Want to DIY here’s how, says Chef Mavro:
You must desalt the cod in running water all night. Then, remove the bones, cut into small pieces, cover with cold water bring to a first boil & strain. Place the cod into a sauce pan, add one tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil & with a wooden spatula crush the fish into a paste. Add very progressively warm milk & olive oil…warm milk, olive oil…warm milk, olive…never stop stirring until you get a beautiful smooth white purée. Add some lemon juice, refrigerate…et voila! You have one of the most delicious appetizers I know. Enjoy with country bread croutons.
And for dessert…peach but of course…
“We flambé the peach with pernod (a wonderful anise flavored liquor from Marseilles also called pastis). Our pastry chef Jose Calpito serves the peaches with chiboust, again a grand classic custard-like recipe. The chiboust is bruléed & accompanied with crème fraiche. I guarantee that this dessert has a very strong Marseilles accent (like me).”
The peach concludes the Provence menu and the celebration of “la grande cuisne provençale.” This is also the celebration of our culinary masters who deserve our love & respect. I hope that they are going to forgive me for my escapades with “molecular cuisine.”
But don’t take me wrong, after this promotion Jonathan, Jose & I are going to continue to surprise you. We have enough craziness in our minds to change the menu every day according to the season and the fresh ingredients from the local market!
If you can’t get to Chef Mavro for this special offering don’t worry he, Jonathan and Jose will continue to surprise and please with some of the best recipes and creations you can find in Hawaii and almost anywhere. “We have enough craziness in our minds to change the menu every day according to the season and the fresh ingredients from the local market,” says Mavro.
Other creative offerings include:
Prawns, Scallops and Upcountry Vegetables
Ginger Hoisin BBQ Pork Chop
Island Style Shrimp, Vegetable and Chinese Sausage Fried Rice
Kettle of Lobster, Shrimp, Scallops, Mussels, Clams and Chorizo simmered in Rich Saffron Broth
‘Ono Pulehu Chicken
Ginger, Soy and Cane Sugar Marinated Breast of Chicken served with Caramelized Maui Onions
Vegetable Fried Rice
Brown Rice Stir Fry with Hamakua Ali’i Mushrooms, Baby Bok Choy, Maui Onion, Peas and Carrots
Korean Stir Fried Yam Noodles, Kula Onions, Shitake Mushrooms, Carrots, Celery, and Won Bok Kim Chee with Grilled Marinated Pork Skewers and Shrimp
Recommended for dessert is the angle-soft and light Keanae Lilikoi cheesecake on a macadamia nut linzer crust topped with raspberry coulis. But these other savories s satisfy the sweet tooth:
Wailua Estate Chocolate Baked Custard On Macadamia Nut Praline Crust with Kula Strawberry Gelato
Calamansi Lime Pie on a coconut macadamia nut graham crust
Chantilly Cake Chocolate Chiffon Cake with sugar cream layers
topped with a chocolate cream puff
There is an extensive wine, which we made good use of, presented on an tablet and a very knowledgeable wine master to walk you through it.
Ko, Kea Lani’s fine dining venue, is fairly high-priced, but competitive with other Maui eateries of its ilk. Whether you’re a guest of the hotel, or bedding down elsewhere, it is definitely one of Maui’s wowies worth checking out.
Humuhumunukunukuapua’a isure is a mouthful to say, but the showcase restaurant at the Grand Wailea is one of the most popular on Maui and rightly so. Award-winning Chef Michael Lofaro has crafted an easy to navigate exceptional menu of the most extraordinary appetizers (called pupus in Hawaii) , entrees and desserts. Like Richard, our friend Bob and I, most people who visit Maui regularly put a dinner at Humu (easier to say) on their dining list. In addition to the pleasing the palate the sensory seaside setting surrounded by a lagoon is just about as romantic as it gets. Especially when you add a perfect martini to the equation.
Chef Lofaro’s food is consistently five-stars rated. His pupus are the best as they prepare the palate for more. During a recent visit the the chef sent out just about every appetizer on the menu. Needless to say we were in pig out heaven. For full epicurean delight you really need to order several to share. We feasted on the tastiest carpaccio of Japanese hamachi ever, that was topped with ginger shave ice and Hawaiian chili. Next came a scallop like you’ve never tasted. Other winners were the Haiku Tomato Baby Mozzarella with smoked Kula strawberry, old Balsamic, Rosemary bread; a Spicy Sesame Beef Tropical Fruit Escabeche that pplayed happily with the taste buds thanks to touches of , Thai basil and pickled cucumber. Of course wines by the glass paired well with each order.
The Grand Wailea – A Waldorf Astoria Resort, is located at 3850 Wailea Alanui Dr., Wailea, Maui, (800) 888-6100.
Joe’s Neuvo Latino with rockstar chef Beverly Gannon http://www.examiner.com/review/review-joe-s-nuevo-latino-brings-creative-cuisine-with-a-samba-beat-to-maui
Friday lunch at the Palm in Beverly Hills. The movers and shakers filled the room, most of them there for Sunday night’s Golden Globe Awards. The adorable Reese Witherspoon sat in a booth holding court by ‘room workers’ stopped by to pay their respects to the nominee for best picture actress in “Wild”.
We had drinks, a martini for Richard, Byron Chard for me. We ate delcious salmon with quinoa, these amazing breaded and fried asparagus and string beans. No dessert, too ful. Fun watching the new Palm (it opened in November 2014) emerge as the new flavor of the month for the entertainment industry who lunch bunch. Lots of CAA folks there, too.
The Dining Diva’s favorite Los Angeles restaurant and choice as the best food found anywhere in the greater metropolitan area, Il Piccolino, 350 N. Robertson, West Hollywood, California. 310-659-2220. Read more here: http://www.examiner.com/article/top-10-things-we-learned-at-a-holiday-lundin-at-celebrity-centric-il-piccolino#sthash.dfkS1z60.hpvt.
Hey hungry college students, want to know where to find the best eats close to campus? Follow this dining roadmap from the Marina to the mainland. Restaurants in close proximity to campuses include:
More than 360 Los Angeles restaurants are scheduled to participate in one of a series of the biggest eating events that hits Los Angeles twice a year. Foodies should mark their calendars for Monday July 14 to 27,2014 for the event sponsored by The Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board (L.A. Tourism) is called dineL.A.’s Restaurant Week, when three course meals are dished out for cut rates such as:
“With L.A.’s vibrant dining scene, it’s no wonder dineL.A. has become one of the most successful Restaurant Weeks in the world,” said Susan Feniger, Executive Chef of Mud Hen and Border Grill. I look forward to welcoming more diners than ever this time around.” Hey get this, even Wolfgang Puck’s participating at this Hotel Bel-Air uber expensive dining emporium.
“We are excited to welcome a record-breaking number of restaurants to dineL.A.’s Restaurant this summer with over 360 participating,” said Stacey Sun, dineL.A. Director. “As a testament to its popularity by both restaurants and consumers, we are extending Restaurant Week to cover two full weekends. We are thrilled to give people yet another opportunity to explore LA’s diverse neighborhoods, cuisines and dining experiences at a great value.”
As always American Express is offering a $5 statement credit to Card Members who register an eligible American Express® Card between July 14 andJuly 27, 2014 and spend $21 or more with the registered Card at participating restaurants during dineL.A.’s Restaurant Week. For complete details visit:www.amexnetwork.com/dinela2014
To make reservations and to view a complete list of participating restaurants visit: www.discoverLosAngeles.com/dineLA.
DineLA Restaurant week is sponsored by the Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board and in partnership with American Express®, dineL.A.’s Restaurant Week is designed to stimulate business and introduce new customers to restaurants located in the many neighborhoods throughout L.A. County. For more information, visit: www.discoverLosAngeles.com/dineLA, or follow dineL.A. on:
For $35 at Firenze Osteria (www.firenzeosteria.com) you get choice of Beef Tartare, Kale Salad; Pork Ossobuco, Polenta and Ricotta Ravioli; Hazelnut Semifreddo, Bomboloni . It’s all fantastic and a real bargain. Check it out at: http://www.examiner.com/review/firenze-osteria-proves-another-delicious-dinelarestaurantweek-discovery
Chi Lin, WeHo’s hottest Asian restaurant is offering a whopping 50% off on dinners starting Sunday, February 2 – Thursday through February 6, 2014, in honor of Chinese New Year. This is quite a bargain for a chance to sample the culinary wizardry of Executive Chef Tyson Wong who is creating dishes to usher in good luck, fortune, and longevity in the Year of the Horse. Chef Wong’s menu of auspicious eats emphasizes traditional Chinese cuisine with modern presentation including dishes such as:
Reservations are must and can be made by calling 310-278-2068, the deal only applies in the restaurant, no take outs.
Chi Lin, which is located at 9201 Sunset Blvd. in West Hollywood, became a fast foodie favorite (yours truly included) since its opening earlier this year. It is one of the IDG brand that includes Los Angeles’s Soleto, B Grill in the Terminal 7 of LAX, Sushi Roku (with locations in West Hollywood, Santa Monica, and Pasadena), BOA Steakhouse (with locations in West Hollywood and Santa Monica), Katana in West Hollywood, and Robata Bar in Santa Monicas and others. For more information visit www.innovativedining.com or find IDG on Facebook.
Chef Mavro, your Dining Diva’s favorite Waikiki restaurant and chef (check out LA Travel Diva Examiner) is spreading the tables of his romantic bistro-like restaurant with an epicurean feast for New Years Eve that will l showcase his unstoppable gastronomic talents with a menu of delicacies from Hawaii and France paired with rare wines and served in a re-imagined setting of black and gold with festive balloons and lots of frivolity.
The eight course menu costs $200 ($98 extra with wine) and includes:
scallop – pancetta (t) *
seared diver scallop, fresh truffled extra virgin olive oil emulsion
comtesse bernard de cherisey, 2011 puligny-montrachet premier cru
egg – truffle (t)
fresh périgord truffle “osmose” egg, from peterson’s upland farm
potato mousseline, chervil, serrano ham ribbons
jean-marc brocard, 2010 chablis grand cru “les clos”
foie gras – balsamic vinegar (t) *
sautéed hudson valley foie gras, poached black mission fig
jicama, balsamic glaze, portuguese sweet bread crouton
château clos haut-peyraguey, 2005 1er cru classé, sauternes
onaga – raïto
seared day boat catch onaga, braised radicchio in burgundy wine
baby spinach, chicharrón, provençale raïto sauce
domaines ott, 2012 côtes de provence rosé, “château romassan”
lobster – lemongrass
indochine-style poached keahole lobster, long rice, kau yuk, kaffir lime
lemongrass, tamarind, green papaya, chervil, crustacean essence
e. guigal, 2012 condrieu “la doriane”
wagyu – japonais
100% wagyu beef medallions, yuzu kosho accents
oxtail quail egg loco moco, sansho jus, baby broccoli, potato mochi
sequoia grove, 2008 “cambium,”napa valley
feta cheese – persimmon (t) *
hawaii island seared feta cheese, layered with country bread tuiles
salad of pickled persimmon, sea asparagus, green peppercorn, li hing mui
rare hawaiian organic white honey
domaine des baumard, 2008 coteaux du layon “clos de st. catherine”
le grand dessert 2013 (t) *
chocolate “déclinaison,” white chocolate ice cream
cacao pulp pearls, chartreuse bubbles, chocolate sauce
golden cocoa nibs, candied almonds
warre’s, 1985 vintage porto
the truffle experience
“fresh perigord truffles – flown in from france”
sliced tableside over truffle-friendly dishes
add 27.00 per dish or
* with truffles on all four of chef’s selections add $87
(t) truffle friendly
a side-by-side tasting of three sustainable caviars
russian osetra, siberian osetra, white sturgeon
served table side with blinis & crème fraiche (10g each)
flight (one or two guests)190.00
ayala, multi-vintage “brut majeur,” champagne 21.00
Chef Mavro is located about 10-minutes from Waikiki at 1969 S. King St., (808) 944-4714 click Reservations to book your table for an epic experience ushering in 2014.
Silvio de Mori serving a shellfish bonanza–caviar on burrata, local white asaparugs soup with white truffles and cannoli beans, tomato soup with rresh mushroom and sage, fettucini with wild mushrooms, Dover sole with crispy kale you will love, veal with a vegetable sauce that tastes so rich but is so light, Tomahawk beef that melts in your mouth like everything else served at this celebrity-packed, neighborhood, casual chic dining wonder.
Il Piccolino is located in West Hollywood on Robertson Blvd. a block north of Beverly Bvld.
My brother Tony has two boats which he sails on Lake Wallenpaupack in Pennsylvania’s Pocono Mountains. One evening he drove his craft to a is a delightful. lake-adjacent dining spot called The Boat House. Not your usual tourist trap, this attractive, sprawling facility attracts lots of locals, who getaway houses on the lake, along with savvy foodies who did their homework before vacationing in this splendid resort area.
We docked about 6 p.m. and strolled in to the bar. It’s a casual spot where many folk come by boat and dress the part. The Diva sipped her usual Chard while Tony nursed a Manhattan.
While each course pleased the palate, a pecan encrusted Basa (only $18) topped with peach and apricot glaze was over-the-top excellent, good enough to fly back from Los Angeles for an encore. Tony raved over his fried shrimp. On other occasions we ordered the steaks, which are done to perfection, especially the 14 ounce rib eye that’s $35.
All entrees are served with salad and choice of baked potato, mashed potato, rice, French fries—all quite tasty, too. Other entrée choices include soups, pastas crab cakes, chicken and other good dishes all reasonably-priced for us out-of-towners used to stiffer prices, but maybe slightly high for the Pocs.
A little backstory:
The lakeside facility, once a a tiny ice cream stand circa 1950s-60s, that attracted visitors to Lake Wallenpaupack. In the late 1970s, New Yorker Jack Rose bought the property and built a restaurant called Sunset Grove. It was rustic with tables made out of tree trunks. It fast became a popular spot for families who went for all three meals.
Then in 1998 the Kiesendahl family, owners of Woodloch, an award winning resort, took over the property, remodeled the restaurant and turned it into the Boat House Restaurant. Today it rules the Poconos as one of the most popular eateries of all times.
The Boat House is located at 141 Route 507 in Hawley, Pennsylvania. For reservations (foodies heading to the area, must go there) call (570) 226-5027 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. For additional information visit the comprehensive website at www.the-boathouse-restaurant.com.
It’s that time of year when foodies get to sample top restaurants in Los Angeles for reduced prices thanks to dineLARestaurant Week which runs through July 26 for its summer 2013 session.
Three course price fixed meals are just $15 to $45 depending on where to go, obviously the more exclusive the place the higher the price. And it’s all good. Check it out…
Chef Mavro (he’s the one in his mother’s arm in the photo and whom the restaurant is named after)is one of the top chefs in all the islands, and some say the best ( in the arms of his Mom as she walks on the boulevard in Marseilles with his older brother in tow.
I agree having had numerous meals fussed over by the amiable Greek with the French accent himself). The restaurant is cozy and romantic (bring your dad or a date for mom if she’s single).
Call 808-944-4714 for reservations or http://email@example.com.
On Friday, May 10, Saturday, May 11 and Sunday, May 12th, pastry Chef Elizabeth Dippong (she’s as amazing as Mavro) will do a special Mother’s Day celebration dessert Namelaka Lemongrass for these three nights. If you can’t join be and live in Ohau,call them for a Chef Mavro Mother’s Day Gift Certificate that she can enjoy whenever she wants.
Flexible menus start at only $85 for a four-course Mother’s Day menu that features: Asparagus Declinaison of white asparagus kanten flavored with sarriette, green asparagus purée, sea asparagus tempura, ponzu sauce, asparagus étuvée, serrano ham on house bread stick; Steamed Onaga, ratatouille, zucchini ribbons, essence of basil, and jus; Pasture-Raised Pork Loin accented with espelette, pineapple glaze, braised & roasted shank Fricassée of Hamakua Hon Shimeji Mushroom, salsify, sumida watercress; and the special Mother’s Day dessert Namelaka – Lemongrass.
You can also choose the restaurant’s 6-course or Grand Tasting menus. You Dining Diva and Richard eat up the Spicy Ahi and Wagyu Beef, since the Diva’s allergic to shellfish she can’t have the Keahole Lobster dishes but they really are very popular options.
Hey foodies in or heading to Oahu, there’s just two more weeks left to feast on fresh Perigord truffles flown in from France and to enjoy some of your winter menu favorites at Chef Mavro, Hawaii’s top best restaurant and chef.
Popular Winter Recipes – only two more weeks
Peterson’s Upland Farm Egg, truffle “osmose,” potato mousseline
chervil, serrano ham ribbons
Yuzu confit big island abalone, honomu hearts of palm salad with granny smith apple, kahuku corn, grapes, shiso, yuzu, ume coulis
on the left: Truffled Egg wine pairing jean-marc brocard 2010 chablis 1er cru “vaulorent”
“white flowers, citrus & honey notes with a rich texture”
on the right: Abalone Heart of Palm “sommelier selection”
kubota manju, junmai daiginjo sake, niigata
“exquisitely smooth & silky with hints of cedar, wet stone & orange blossom”
Sautéed Hudson Valley Foie Gras, balsamic glaze, bed of savoy cabbage mission fig poached in sweet wine, toasted portuguese sweet bread wine pairing:
château roumieu-lacoste, 2009 sauternes
“intense fig & apricot, delicate sweetness”
Call (808) 944-4714 or connect with Chef Mavro for candid back stories about the cooking competitions he judges, advanced training he offers at culinary schools, snapshots from Mondays when the restaurant is closed when he’s out and about, and last week a movie review of…
From the Burger Lounge on Sunset Blvd., in West Hollywood.
Lovin’ Spoonful is easy. Rarely does Los Angeles boast a genuine neighborhood restaurant better than Frank Foley’s Southern-influenced Studio City local hang.
Whether it’s whiskeys or draft beers at the bar or chef Victor Calderon’s delicious take on Southern cooking at a table (and there are communal tables too, appropriate for a restaurant where the hospitality vibe dominates), the food at this joint is exceptional.
Frank’s a Georgia boy who’s been hankering for the food he left back home since he arrived in town. So when Henry’s Hat went belly up, he pounced. Spoonful has only been open a few months and it’s already favored by a crowd that tends to be young (but not too young) and working in the “industry,” as they say in these parts.
The physical layout hasn’t changed. What has is the décor, now studded with hanging lamps made from spirits bottles and elaborate chandeliers, with a pressed tin ceiling and a vintage fainting couch or two. “It’s like Rhett Butler’s smoking lounge,” observed a server. And Southern-centric slogans are painted on the walls. A favorite: The South is the place where Macaroni & Cheese is a vegetable, chicken is fried and tomatoes are green.
Chef actually downplays the richness usually associated with Southern fare. Here, the creamy grits come under Cajun Gulf shrimp, the slow-roasted short ribs rest on sweet potato polenta and the pan seared red snapper arrives on a bed black-eyed pea succotash.
These are exceptional, but the appetizers—and the show-stopping pecan pie—may be even better. Fried green tomatoes are moist, crunchy and tangy; braised pork belly is lean, flavorful and comes with a most unusual peeled soft boiled egg with a delicate maple-flavored crust (what a wonderful variation on bacon and eggs this is); pulled pork sliders with four house-made barbecue sauces are authentic without being greasy. Frank’s considering offering a sampler plate of the best appetizers, and we should all encourage him to do so.
Spoonful’s terrific food and drink far are probably better than needs be. There aren’t many saloons around where you can get a perfectly made Sazerac into which a compressed ice ball the size of a decent snowball has been plunked and a pan-baked, nut-rich, not too sweet pecan pie.
Prices are moderate and there’s a 5-6 p.m. happy hour. Live blues and bluegrass music are planned. Spoonful is located at 3413 Cahuenga Boulevard West, directly across from LA Fitness, 323-512-4800.
We went to the launch party of Patron and Tacos up on the roof at the Peninsula Beverly Hills Hotel last Wednesday. The weekly offering is held Friday, Saturday and Sundays night until the end of October (starting at 5 p.m.) and is definitely worth doing for the $35 tab that comes with four delicious, gormet tacos plus one Patron cocktail. Read about it here: http://www.examiner.com/review/tacos-and-patron-tequila-prove-winning-combo-at-the-posh-peninsula-beverly-hills
Chef Mavro talks about the Hana Hou “Greatest Hits” Menu
– starting tonight Tuesday, August 28th
For one month only. Chef Mavro , the Dining Diva’s favorite Hawaiian chef, is cooking guest favorites from the past. The master of meals is featuring sland Snapper Baked in a Hawaiian Salt Crust; Goat Cheese with
one-minute strawberry jam; and much more. See complete menu here.
Chef Mavro changes the menu every season. Chef has been proceeding this way since the opening of his first restaurant in Provence, La Presqu’ile, in 1978. Our menu is seasonal featuring the freshest local ingredients found the same morning in the market and always using the latest trends and techniques such as fusion, nouvelle, molecular, etc.
Says Chef Mavro, “Since I never look back to old recipes and start every season totally from scratch, some guests arrive, open the menu and ask “what happened to that wonderful dish that I enjoyed before?” I answer: “mais oui, I know…but please try our newest creations.” Before you leave I check back and you say “wow now I have new favorites! But still I loved so much your Snapper baked in a Hawaiian salt crust, your Lobster Chorizo Puff, and so on.” Can’t let go. And I’m honored! So, every year in September at the end of Summer, just before the Autumn menu while we’re waiting for the fresh Burgundy truffles, we cook for you a Hana Hou Menu – the Greatest Hits! Please check the 6-course Hana Hou – Greatest Hits Menu to see what’s going on starting tonight. Of course we are also offering our 3-course, 4-course and grand tasting menus.
Chef Mavro talks about the Hana Hou “Greatest Hits” Menu
– starting tonight Tuesday, August 28th
For one month only. Chef Mavro is cooking guest favorites from the past!
Yes we’re talking Island Snapper Baked in a Hawaiian Salt Crust; Goat Cheese with
one-minute strawberry jam; and much more. See the complete menu here.
Meli Melo Local summer vegetables of the day watercress, chick pea fritters, sea asparagus, eggplant tahini, black garlic Wine Pairing: Domaine Huet, 2010 Vouvray Sec “Le Haut Lieu” “chenin blanc with a kiss of honey & a rich palate; full of acidity” Photo Credit: Justin Morizono ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Island Snapper Baked in a Hawaiian Salt Crust – GQ Magazine Top 10 Recipes of the year Wine Pairing: Grgich Hills Estate, Fume Blanc, 2010 Napa Valley “full-bodied, flavors of grapefruit & lemongrass” Photo Credit: John De Mello Tomato-Ogo-Fines Herbes Sauce …OK I’ve made over 80,000 but I’ll make another 80,000 if you ask for it! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Keahole Lobster Kahuku Cream Corn Chorizo Puff Wine Pairing: Domaine Long-Depaquit, 2010 Chablis 1er cru “Vaillons” “impressive chablis; pure, gorgeous fruit layered with the most delicate honeysuckle & floral qualities” or rare wine selection Domaine des Comtes Lafon, 2009 Meursault “Clos de la Barre” “opulent, mineral-driven, intense & earthy; from one of meursault’s legendary vineyards (less than 5 acres)” Photo Credit: Justin Morizono Which part is your favorite? My popular creamy corn recipe, the spicy chorizo, or the delicious lobster from Keahole on the Big Island? ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Maui fresh goat cheese, one-minute frankie’s nursery fresh green peppercorn strawberry jam, island arugula Wine Pairing: Cocchi, Barolo Chinato “licorice, bitter aromas with sweet red fruit & intense nutmeg & cinnamon” Photo Credit: Justin Morizono ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ oh yes…lilikoi malasadas toujours! And updated by our rising star Pastry Chef Lynette Malasada – Urfa Biber trio of malasadas, fresh lilikoi “déclinaison” of curd, chiboust, and ice cream greek yogurt parfait, candied pistachio, urfa biber peppercorn sauce Wine Pairing: Malvira, Birbet, Italy “red wine made from the brachetto grape with a slight sparkle & notes of fresh plums & berries”
Call 808-944-4714′ email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Located five minutes from Waikiki at 1969 S. King Street, Honolulu, Chef Mavro is closed Mondays. If you’re in Hawaii or are heading there, be sure plan on dining there. It’s a culinary experience you’ll never forget and you will want to go back for more.
Dan Tana’s, www.dantanasrestaurant.com, is located at 9071 Santa Monica Blvd. in West Hollywood, 310-275-9444, reservations are a must. Valet parking is available and advised as on street parking is limited and metered.
http://www.examiner.com/article/get-ready-to-rock-tonight-as-the-sunset-strip-music-festival-opens-with-the-door and if you like what your read, please subscribe to the page. Thank you.
A few years ago my husband Richard and I went an assignment, tailored made for the Dining Diva, to Oregon. The task was to find fine wines as well as check out some B&Bs and a llama farm.Of course our favorite part was the wine thing. We visited many vineyards and tasting rooms and discovered Sokol Blosser. It was love at first sip and we brought some home. Alas it was all gone until a friend sent us a gift selection.The first to open was the Pinot Noir, which as suggested by said friend, we enjoyed on a hot, sunny afternoon by our pool. Simply delicious to every last drop.Let me share a little of the wine company’s philosophy: Where does great Pinot Noir grow? Where intellect and intuition meet. Where instinct and a meticulous nature commingle. Pinot Noir isn’t a grape for every place, nor for every winery. It doesn’t allow for cutting corners or letting the details slide. It reveals all, about vineyard,
vintage, winemaking technique – ultimately, about one’s willingness to engage it
in lifelong study.
For more than 35 years – since before there was an Oregon “wine industry” – the Sokol Blosser family have been learning about Pinot Noir, about how it best grows on their small parcel in the Dundee Hills, and what it takes to capture the brilliance of the fruit and the essence of the land. This resolute quest for excellence is also expressed in their environmentally
friendly winemaking techniques, a core value for Sokol Blosser ever since the
first vines were planted in 1971.
At Sokol Blosser, growing grapes organically and embracing sustainability in all winery operations is a way of life. It’s no mere coincidence, however, that over the years such practices have the happy consequence of enhancing the excellence of their Pinot Noir.
In addition to the official recognition given to Sokol Blosser’s environmental practices, its wines have consistently won recognition for their quality. Being good to the earth – farming, buying and building through the
lens of The Natural Step – is really about paying attention to and respecting the details.
If you want to unearth some mighty fine wines and have fun doing it, think the Oregon trail. And while you’re at it stop in and say hi to the Sokol Blossers for us.
PO Box 399
5000 NE Sokol Blosser Lane
Dundee, OR 97115
Phone: 503-864-2282 Toll Free: 800-582-6668
We love our Friday lunches at the Palm on Santa Monica Blvd. in West Hollywood seated in our favorite booth #7 sipping mighty fine wine and devouring a three course Business Person’s lunch that’s just a little over $25 each (wine’s extra).
We take the super-licious, New York-style cheesecake home, it’s included in the price, too. We ate it last night, boy is it fantastically rich and tasty. Reminds me of home (NY).
The Dining Diva has never been big on foie gras, I just don’t like the taste, even after sampling it in some of the finest French restaurants of the world.Alas, Richard, my main man, doesn’t feel the same, he loves the rich, fat-filled stuff, so we had a sort of farewell party to foie gras the other night at LA’s spiffy Gordon Ramasy at the London West Hollywood.
Chef sent out what would be the last foie gras served in California after June 30, 2012.
|New unlimited small plates Border Brunch is now available Saturday and Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Border Grill Santa Monica…For the low price of $29.99 you can select from an smorgasboard of mouthwatering small plates, featuring Yucatan Egg Benedict, Bacon Jalapeño PBJ, Chorizo and Egg Taco, Coconut French Toast, Huevos Rancheros, Machaca Chilaquiles, and many more. Add bottomless mimosas for only $6, or upgrade to one of Border Grill’s tasty specialty cocktails like a Ginger Pomegranate Margarita, refreshing Cucumber Jalapeño Margarita, or spicy Bloody Maria. Call 310.451.1655 or click here for reservationsand find out why variety is the spice of life, and brunch, at Border Grill.Want to spend the afternoon on a foodie dream date with the hottest chefs and mixologists in Los Angeles? Join Mary and Susan at Taste of the Nation on Sunday, June 10, 2012 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at The Lot in West Hollywood and experience L.A.’s top culinary talent, including Picca, ink.sack, Ray’s and Stark Bar, Umami Burger, Black Market, Tavern, STREET, Blue Cow Kitchen, Night + Market, Scoops, Short Cake, Father’s Office, Harvard & Stone, Neat, Brewery Ommegang, Craftsman Brewing, and the list goes on and on and on. Border Grill is excited to partner with Alaska Seafood and Cacique cheese–with each contributing $10,000 to Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign. So get your taste buds ready for some wild, sustainable Alaska Halibut Veracruzano with jalapeño, tomato, olive, oregano, and white wine garlic broth, as well as a Squash Blossom Quesadilla, featuring a dynamic trio of manchego, panela, and cotija cheeses by Cacique.
Click here for tickets and more info.
Though it’s been open for six years now, the Coupa Cage is somewhat of a well-kept secret in Bev Hills, a few doors down on Canon from the always-bustling Wolfgang’s Steakhouse (no relation to Puck).
Now, however, new energy has been infused into the family-owned operation by vivacious Camelia Coupal who grew up in Venezuela but went to Stanford University like her siblings. The Stanford connection is key since Coupa’s first U.S. store opened in Palo Alto a few doors down from Facebook’s first office.
The restaurant was known for its coffee–the family roasts its own java from local sources in Venezuela and ships it to the U.S–and the original Facebookers bought their joe there. (“The Social Network” movie accurately depicted Facebookers with Coupa containers.) Needless to say, this Coupa Cafe’s coffee, a hearty, dark roast, is miraculous. We went to Coupa Café last night and sampled a variety of Venezuelan dishes, which tend to be heavy on cheese and pastry-type crust.
The Cachapas were fresh corn griddle pancakes with a dollop of queso de mano, a typical Venezuelan fresh cheese, on top. Asado Negro was slowly cooked beef served with roasted garlic mashed potatoes, mesclun greens and goat cheese. Polvorosa de Pollo tucked shredded chicken inside a crumble pie crust. Unlike other Latin American styles, Venezuelan food isn’t overly spicy but some dishes tend toward sweetness, which is an acquired taste outside the dessert course. For dessert, we shared delicious Tres Leches, an amped-up version of the Latin American standby of cake soaked in three kinds of milk (condensed usually being one, though Cecelia said the famil
y recipe is a secret).
Coupa’s famous coffee would have been the perfect ending, but instead we brought a bag of beans home. This is the only restaurant in the world outside Venezuela where you can enjoy the nation’s shade grown, handpicked, sun-dried, fair trade organic single estate Arabica coffee beans. That’s because the country’s current regime does not allow the export green beans. We ground and brewed it this morning and it was kick-ass fantastic. Coupa Café was conceived by the Coupal family in the late 1980s as a result of the desire to revive the tradition of the excellent quality Venezuelan coffee that was lost during the oil boom years. They opened the Arabica Coffee Company, the roasting company of Coupa Café, in Caracas, Venezuela in 1990. Coupa Café opened its doors in Palo Alto, California in 2004, followed by a location two years later in Beverly Hills.
There are a total of 6 locations, most of them on Stanford’s campus. Coupa Café Beverly Hills is located at 419 North Canon Drive – Beverly Hills, 310-385-0420. It’s open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner with a nightly happy hour from 5 to 7 p.m.
Steak doesn’t get much better than this which the Dining Diva devoured last night, with the help of her husband of course (that’s Richard) at BLT on Sunset Blvd. in West Hollywood (for those who know, it’s the former Le Dome).
With a side of sensational mushrooms and a bottle of Lewis Chardonnay, it was all great.
Great place for a Valentine’s Day dinner too, but don’t expect quiet, this place roars with carnivores.
BLT at Sunset Plaza
After superb many lunches (and dinners) at Spago, a whole bunch enjoyed especially during the bi-annual DineLARestaurant Week, we had a major misfire yesterday at Wolfgang Puck’s Beverly Hills haunt of the rich and famous.
OMG, the Thai chicken salad was abominable. Abominable I tell you. Granted it’s only $19 but it has always tasted great, with Asian spices and peanuts and fresh ingredients. This one had most red and white cabbage, a few sickly strands of lettuce and NO flavor.
Richar’d price fixed, dineLA lunch was a cut better but n0t nearly as good as other times. The salmon was good, not great. The dessert trio was pretty awesome though.
Me thinks Wolfie’s spending too much time as his new restaurant at the recently reopened Hotel Bel Air (www.hotelbelair.com) and not enough time quality controlling his golden egg in Beverly Hills. Should you read this Mr. Puck, your presence is needed.
Spago was jam packed with the usual Friday lunch crowd, and as always, new faces of tourists. The service was good. And in deference to the chefs, when I complained to the manager about the salad (he stopped by the table and asked how things were so I had to tell the truth), he took it off the tab. Quite galantly at that, never said a word just wasn’t on the bill when Richard paid.
Still there is no excuse for a misfire at Spago. Wolfie, you need to be there more often………………………………………………….
Okay, the Diva does eat at Chipotle once in awhile. In fact the last time were in New York staying at the Palace Hotel, we walked down the street up and picked up some Mexican food to go and ate it in our suite with some wine and beer (the former for the Diva). We had been eating out a lot and it was just so cool to take out food into a lavish suite.
Anyhow the fast food chain that dishes out some darn good south of the border fare is having a Super Bowl special I thought I’d pass on, here goes:
Chipotle Mexican Grill will be serving its customers burritos for half the price and none of the ad spend. Through its upcoming February 5 promotion, “The Super Big Internationally Televised Professional Football Bowl Game Half Price Party in a Box,” Chipotle is offering a half-price deal for those who use the Burritos by the Box ordering option found on www.Chipotle.com on Sunday, February 5, 2012.
Chipotle is famous for its irreverent style and genuine interaction with customers to build loyalty. Using its social media channels, website, and in-store posters that allude to the nation’s largest sporting event but do not name it, Chipotle is encouraging customers to make it a party by ordering six or more burritos using the Burritos by the Box order form, all the while end-running the advertising hoopla that has become such a big part of pro football’s biggest game.
“Chipotle has never been one to follow the crowd when it comes to the food we serve or the way we market our restaurants,” said Chris Arnold, communications director at Chipotle. “We’re more interested in making great tasting food from the best ingredients we can find in a way that is affordable and accessible to everyone.”
To participate in the “The Super Big Internationally Televised Professional Football Bowl Game Half Price Party in a Box” promotion, Chipotle customers can log onto www.Chipotle.com and download a Burritos by the Box order form from the nearest Chipotle location. The order form allows customers to identify how many chicken, steak, carnitas, barbacoa or vegetarian burritos they would like to order. The burritos come packed in a box with handles for easy transportation, along with sides of sour cream, chips, medium tomatillo-green chili salsa and freshly made guacamole.
This offer is only available Sunday, February 5, 2012 on orders of six burritos or more. For orders of 50 burritos or more, please allow at least 24 hours notice prior to pick up. The maximum order accepted is 100 burritos.
Steve Ells, founder, chairman and co-CEO, started Chipotle with the idea that food served fast did not have to be a typical fast food experience. Today, Chipotle continues to offer a focused menu of burritos, tacos, burrito bowls (a burrito without the tortilla) and salads made from fresh, high-quality raw ingredients, prepared using classic cooking methods and served in a distinctive atmosphere. Through our vision of Food With Integrity, Chipotle is seeking better food from using ingredients that are not only fresh, but that—where possible—are sustainably grown and naturally raised with respect for the animals, the land, and the farmers who produce the food. A similarly focused people culture, with an emphasis on identifying and empowering top performing employees, enables us to develop future leaders from within. Chipotle opened with a single restaurant in 1993 and currently operates more than 1,100 restaurants. For more information, visit Chipotle.com.
The vegan fare is fantastic. The artistic ambiance brings out your inner muse at this semi-funk cafe on Santa Monic Blvd. in Hollywood where your Dining Diva dined last night with Richard, of course.
My rice bowl with grilled and garlicky tofu was amazing, washed down with two $5 glasses of house Chardonnay (it was happy hour which runs until 7Pm, we ate early because we were headed to see a play Pulp Shakespeare (a parody of Pulp Fiction done in Shakespearan speak which was more like a Shakespearean tragedy to me. It’s at a local, little theater called Footlights).
Cafe Muse, 6547 Santa Monica Blvd., 323-464-6873 and they have free WiFi!
Your Dining Diva had lunch at TheBlvd at the Four Seasons on Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly HIlls yesterday. While the occasion was pleasant, seeing a friend and celebrating a birthday, the service exceptional, the prices were shocking.
I mean please $8 for an iced tea just because it’s called an “Arnold Palmer”. A $5 charge to split our $27 Greek Salad (and a small one at that) and 14 bucks for tomato soup.
Sure the restaurant is lovely and all decked out for the holidays and our service was excellent, but how can even the Four Seasons get off charging that much. And we won’t even go near wine (a glass of a good one was a staggering $25!).
What a meal at Pinot Bistro on Ventura Blvd., in Studio City, California…we went on Sunday as part of the DineLARestaurantWeek promo where you get three course meals for nearly half the going rate at more than 300 restaurants from LA to Orange County.
Kraft and Paula Deen’s Real Women of Philadelphia online community have shared some of their favorite quick and easy recipes with Philadelphia Cream Cheese to cook a delicious meal in less than 30 minutes.
Quick and easy recipes include:
· Santa Fe Chicken Tacos With Avocado Cream · Hidden Veggie Garlic and Bacon Pasta · Easy Chicken Flautas · Cheesy Beef and Potatoes More delicious and easy-to-prepare dishes like these are featured on Paula Deen and Kraft Foods’ online community – Real Women of Philadelphia and in their cookbook Real Women of Philadelphia: The Cookbook which can be purchased online at http://www.Lulu.com.