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11

May

Pylone turn

Pylon turn

Racing Bulls


By Alain Gayot


Motorsports are elevated when you are a live spectator from the sound of the roaring engine to the anticipation of an active crowd of 55,000. But when you are talking about the Red Bull Air Races, everything get kicked up a notch – especially when fans can get right up to their favorite pilot for a quick autograph on a recently purchased t-shirt. Finally it certainly can’t get much better than the setting in San Diego Bay with perfect weather conditions.


Created in 2003 by the energy drink guru Dietrich Mateschitz, the air racing series is a cross between the air races of the twenties and modern aerobatics flying. Although the aircrafts are small in size, the show they put on is big – very big. And beyond the actual race plane, there are all sorts of other acts and fly-bys by the U.S. Navy, demonstrations by the Coast Guards etc. You sort of need to attend to catch the full effect.

  Continue reading “Red Bull Air Race in San Diego” »



George Boyd and James Warren with Andre and Alain Gayot

George Boyd and James Warren with Andre and Alain Gayot

Tuskegee Airmen at the Udvar-Hazy Center and Baghdad


by Alain Gayot


It’s been a few decades since the end of WWII but there are still wars being fought and airmen up in the skies chasing bogies and dropping ordinance. A select group of black men, who had been previously forbidden to participate because of their race, were chosen as part of an “experiment” towards the end of the second world conflict to see if they might be fit to fly. African-American men had flown in air forces in Canada and France but never in the U.S. or for the U.S. Air Force.


“If you want to know more about us,” says George Mills Boyd, “you can watch the 1995 Robert Markowitz movie with Laurence Fishburne and Cuba Gooding Jr., The Tuskegee Airmen. But you should know that Eleanor Roosevelt was flown by the [white] Base Commander, as no [black] cadet would have been allowed to take the President’s wife up.” Alain and André caught up with four of the surviving Tuskegee Airmen, who were on their way to meet the boys in Baghdad for a motivational encounter, during a United Airlines tribute. It was an honor and a pleasure to meet a bunch of alert octogenarians who not only fought the enemy but also quasi-insurmountable racial obstacles on their ascent to build the respectable Fighting 99th Squadron. Some of them still fly to this day.

Continue reading “Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, Stephen F. Udvar-Hazy Center” »



Supporting Wine

on March 31st, 2009
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31

Mar

Peter Mondavi Jr. with Alain Gayot

Peter Mondavi Jr. with Alain Gayot

by Alain Gayot


When it comes to legendary wineries in Napa, Charles Krug certainly comes out on top as the Valley’s first. Founded in 1861 by an exiled Prussian radical journalist, it was purchased by the Mondavi family after prohibition and the rest is history.


We caught up with third generation family owner Peter Mondavi Jr. at a fundraiser event for the Make-A-Wish children’s foundation of Greater Los Angeles at Morton’s on La Cienega. Emcee, Sara Fasolino, Certified Sommelier extraordinaire for the Morton’s chain, doubled as the evening’s auctioneer.

Continue reading “Supporting Wine” »



Tim Street-Porter and Tom LaBonge

Tim Street-Porter and Tom LaBonge

Photos-R-Us

by Alain Gayot
 

Who better than photographer Tim Street-Porter to feature LA and to be featured in LA at the debut of the prestigious Annenberg Space for Photography museum? Tom LaBonge, Councilmember for the Fourth District thought so too and used this glamorous occasion to present to him a Certificate of Recognition.
 


We were excited by the space which is supposed to remind you of a camera. In fact, the center room puts you right inside the lens and the ceiling design is reminiscent of a shutter. Starting Friday March 27th photography aficionados will be able to peruse the excellent work of talented artists free of charge.
 

Continue reading “Annenberg Space for Photography Museum” »



The Soul is Cool

on March 14th, 2009
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14

Mar

 

Kia Soul

Kia Soul

 By Alain Gayot

It’s quite cool to hit Miami Beach during Spring Break. You’ll find lots of energy up and down Collins Avenue, in the emerging Design District, and on quaint Brickell Key. It’s even more cool if you do it in a totally new automobile: in this case the thought out of the box Kia Soul.  This value-packed automobile hits showrooms anytime now. It offers a bunch of interior space, a great-sounding Infinity audio system with speakers that light up to the beat of the music, integrated iPod operation, and enough horsepower to haul four jovial beach-goers and their ice chest and other equipment. Best part is, its price, starting at $13,995 with a smiling in your face front-end, a boxy body and a fifth door for easy access. Kia marketing peeps assure us, it’s truly a new way to roll. Our Alien Sand colored tester with glow in the dark Soul logo laden seats turned as many heads as the almost has-been glamorous Lamborghinis in South Beach.

 

Continue reading “The Soul is Cool” »



The Smelly Cheese Shop

on February 20th, 2009
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20

Feb

A variety of cheeses from Australia

A variety of cheeses from Australia

by Alain Gayot

Going to a food market in any locale gives you a pretty good idea of what’s going on and teaches you a lot about a community and its people. I like to say that every time I head to Paris, as soon as I get off the plane, I head straight for the market. Each time I do that, I am amazed at the plethora of products, even if sometimes the morel mushrooms come from Oregon.

 

After a 23 hour trek from Los Angeles to Adelaide, the capital of South Australia, we headed to the Central Market where, amongst an assortment of kangaroo and crocodile meats, local seafood offerings and exotic fruits, we were surprised to discover cheeses. Say what? Yes, cheese of the very best kind, made in various parts of the vast state of South Australia.

Continue reading “The Smelly Cheese Shop” »



BMW Art Cars

on February 12th, 2009
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12

Feb

At the LACMA BMW event

Alain Gayot at the LACMA BMW event

Fast Art


by Alain Gayot

 

A long time ago in a place far away from the City of the Angels, I grew up collecting toy cars. Yes, I always liked cars, often taking them apart and putting them back together. (The same goes for watches but that will be for another story.) One of these cars was a model of the 1975 BMW 3.0 CSL that car enthusiast and racer Herve Poulin commissioned Alexander Calder to paint. I loved the car design by itself, loved the race car version even more, had no idea who Calder was, but I thought his finished version was rather cool. He also painted a plane for Braniff International, for those who remember the progressive airline which was the only American company to fly — albeit very briefly — the magnificent but doomed Concorde supersonic airplane.

Continue reading “BMW Art Cars” »



V Australia: A New Airline

on February 06th, 2009
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06

Feb

The new Boeing 777-300ER from V Australia at LAX


This afternoon on a much needed rainy day in Los Angeles, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa welcomed Sir Richard Branson and one of his brand new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft for his new airline V Australia. The aircraft was on a special livery stop-over at the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). Tomorrow, the crew takes the aircraft to Sydney where the sister airline to Virgin Atlantic will offer non-stop service between Los Angeles and Sydney and Brisbane beginning February 27, 2009. Continue reading “V Australia: A New Airline” »


Christmas Abalone @ Surfas

on December 19th, 2008
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19

Dec

 
 

Brad Buckley cooking Abalone with Alain

Brad Buckley cooking Abalone with Alain

 
By Alain Gayot

Life is funny like that: today, I really needed an abalone fix. So I headed over to Surfas and caught up with Brad Buckley of The Abalone Farm in Cayucos as he was doing a cooking demonstration. We cooked some and ate some and, as expected, it was rather yummy.

Continue reading “Christmas Abalone @ Surfas” »



All About Bees

on December 02nd, 2008
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02

Dec

Mitzi Dulan RD, Alain Gayot and Christopher Watt

Mitzi Dulan RD, Alain Gayot and Christopher Watt


Who can possibly remember when they first had it? The fact is it’s ever present. It’s very good for you in many ways, it never goes rancid or bad and yes, it’s very sweet. My worry is that I had heard that “killer bees” were decimating honey bees worldwide and that without bees there would be no life left on earth.


Is that what took the dinosaurs in the past?  Where do bees come from and what do they do? Will I be able to continuously put honey in my tea? So I headed over to the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel where the National Honey Board held a media event and grilled a couple of board individuals on some serious questions. I needed to know if we are in trouble and where my honey would come from in the future.

Continue reading “All About Bees” »



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