There were so many chefs and wineries that I didn’t have the chance to talk with everyone, even though I was there for over four hours. I started my tour with John Cuevas from Muse at Montage Beverly Hills, who prepared a salad of local watermelon, marinated green beans, feta and anchovy. I tasted Curtis Stone’s chicken liver parfait after waiting in line behind a crowd of fans getting his autograph (some even had Stone tattoo their arms!). Much later in the evening I ended my tour with chef Warren Schwartz of Westside Tavern (our current Los Angeles Review of the Week). Unfortunately I didn’t get to try his grilled hanger steak with brown butter béarnaise because it was too late in the evening.
With the world’s population expanding like a hot air balloon readying for flight, our food supply needs to be addressed at a macro level by huge food ingredient firms such as CP Kelco. Still at a macro level, this global company, owned by the J.M. Huber Corporation, is itself the result of a merger of the Danish company Copenhagen Pectin, the Finnish company Noviant, and the American Firm Kelco Company. CP Kelco is a leading producer and supplier of specialty hydrocolloids – a family of materials designed to control the rheology (flow behavior) of water in various systems.
The products manufactured by CP Kelco include: carrageenan, cellulose gum, diutan gum, gellan gum, locust bean gum, microparticulated whey protein concentrate, pectin, welan gum, xanthan gum, and other novel biopolymers. These products can be found in applications spanning across the food, pharmaceutical, oral care, personal care, household and consumer product, paper coating and oil field drilling industries. Every day, you are using a product that contains hydrocolloids. They have more than 3,500 customers in over 100 countries worldwide. That’s big!
Last night, as I was leaving the Geffen Playhouse in Westwood, I was trampled by a mass of frantic fans hoping for an autograph and a picture. The group was not looking for me, but rather Tom Hanks who was stepping out of the theatre to address the mob. I tried to get through the high-energy crowd by telling them, “Let me out”; their attention was ONLY focused on Hanks. But what were we all doing there?
Tom Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson had organized a “reading” of Shakespeare’s “The Comedy of Errors” with a star-studded cast to benefit The Shakespeare Festival in Los Angeles. The proceeds from the event went to support operational costs of youth and education programming, as well as professional theatrical performances.
The performance was unique in that the actors read their lines from the script—an interesting outcome of their busy schedule!
Last night, the Greater Los Angeles Division of the American Liver Foundation held its third annual Flavors of Los Angeles culinary gala, where I was acting as honorary chair, also for the third time. The event took place at City National Bank Plaza in downtown Los Angeles and began with a cocktail reception and a silent auction. Afterwards, eight Los Angeles chefs prepared a five-course feast with wine pairings for their personal tables of ten guests. I had the pleasure of mingling and interviewing each of them as they were cooking right in front of the patrons. Each table had a different meal, and I can assure you that they were all good.
Master chef Nobu Matsuhisa himself was there cooking a special dinner, paired with saké from the Hokusetsu brewery. Sitting down in the restaurant, I could not help thinking of the days of L’Orangerie. Nobu’s smile and precise cuisine brought me back to today’s reality of this prestigious address on La Cienega. Out of the beautiful eight-course meal, the Wagyu beef was the winner. It had been roasted in the oven, and seasoned with a truffle teriyaki sauce.