The term “library wine” typically refers to a bottle that has been cellared, but I recently discovered a whole new kind of library wine. St. Helena Public Library (SHPL) in the Napa Valley has a small collection of 91 vines on its property. Planted in 2000, it is known as Barney’s Backyard, in honor of Bernard Rhodes, first President of the Wine Library Association. Barney’s Backyard complements the adjacent Library Vineyard, planted between 1880 and 1920. Turley Wine Cellars, which leases Library Vineyard, harvests and vinifies together the grapes from both vineyard plots.
For this dinner, we have joined forces with Barbara Lazaroff and Sherry Lansing, the founders of California Spirit. Since 1984, this organization has been raising funds for the American Cancer Society. Over time, fifteen million dollars have been distributed for research, education, advocacy and patient services in Los Angeles County and beyond.
For California Spirit XXIX, some of the best chefs in Southern California will be cooking and offering dishes that you will enjoy on the plaza of the Pacific Design Center, on Sunday, July 28th, starting at 4 p.m. Participating restaurants include:
The Hollywood Roosevelt hotel has dressed up its historic lobby with holiday decorations that will be on view until December 30th. Last week, for the first time, it held a ceremony for the lighting of the Christmas tree. And since we were in glitzy Hollywood, snow fell on us from the ceiling (watch the video). The evening was dedicated to the LAPD’s Police Activities League (PAL), a youth crime prevention program, so guests deposited presents for the children underneath the tree.
Newly appointed chef Benjamin Bailly at Public Kitchen & Bar was busy with his team making sure that the guests’ appetites were satisfied. (I will leave chef Bailly some time to implement his own menu before reviewing the restaurant.)
It is that time of the year when Mehdi Eftekari, the general manager of the Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills, organizes an evening to collect toys for the U.S. Marine Corps ReserveToys for Tots Program. The foundation then distributes them as Christmas gifts to needy children. Last week, I joined hundreds of other guests bearing unwrapped toys to enter the worthwhile event.
“This fund-raiser and charity are very personal to me, and I am committed to putting smiles on children’s faces as long as I can. I appreciate all of the support that friends and clients have given to me in order to achieve my goal,” said Eftekari.