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Raising the Bar Again

on November 11th, 2009
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11

Nov

  • pinitbutton Raising the Bar Again
joesrestaurantvenice 300x144 Raising the Bar Again
The contestants and the judges (from left to right): Josh Renfree/BOA, Judge Michael Cardenas/BOA, Sophie Gayot, Clint Johnson/Comme Ca, Judge Nile Park/Comme Ca, Stacy Street/Church & State, Judge Yassmin Sarmadi/Church & State, Hector Bury/Joe’s, Judge Joe Miller/Joe’s

By Sophie Gayot

Come join us this Sunday, Nov. 15th, at 3:30p.m. at David Myers’ Comme Ca restaurant where the second part of Raising the Bar will be held.

 

 

Raising the Bar is a free cocktail competition that I will be judging, along with Victoria Recaño (anchor of KTLA’s 6 and 10 p.m. newscasts), between the bartenders of Joe’s in Venice, Comme Ca, BOA Steakhouse and Church & State. They will be required to make three rounds of drinks: a classic cocktail, a themed drink using a certain spirit (Bourbon) and a creation of their own.

 

Stacy Street from Church & State won the first part of the competition held at Joe’s in October. The classic was a Negroni; round two was made with Zaya Rum. For the freestyle, Hector Bury from Joe’s came up with “The Jean Genie” (Tuata, Vodka, Cointreau, lemon juice), Clint Johnson from Comme Ca with “Dominicana”, Josh Rentree from BOA with “Pumpkin Cream” and Street wowed the judges with her “Crémant de la Poire”.

 

Expect the atmosphere to warm up as time goes by. And, don’t worry, I will leave Comme Ca under the legal alcohol limit. Note that the event is free, so please come to Comme Ca.

 

 
 
 

Photo by John Meng

 



Taste of Carnaval

on November 10th, 2009
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10

Nov

  • pinitbutton Taste of Carnaval
img 7511 300x224 Taste of Carnaval
Three girls with body paint

by Stephen Volkamer

 
Last Wednesday evening we enjoyed an authentic taste of Carnaval, sans the plane tickets to Brazil, at the grand opening night of Samba Brazilian Steakhouse & Lounge at Universal CityWalk. When we got there, we saw a lively parade of samba dancers—clad in glittering bikinis and colorful feathers—shaking to the beat of booming drums.

 



KAHLÚA, Old and New

on October 23rd, 2009
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23

Oct

  • pinitbutton KAHLÚA, Old and New
kaluabottle 90x300 KAHLÚA, Old and New

KAHLUA coffee liqueur

by Jeff Hoyt

 

We grew up with the iconic coffee liqueur, and remember walking back across the border with a newly-purchased bottle the first time we visited Mexico. But we were surprised to learn that the more-than-70-years-old brand had diversified greatly.

 

While the original flavor has been around since 1936, there are currently five other KAHLÚA’s available for cocktails, spiking coffee and even cooking. (Not to mention two pre-mixed cocktails for lazy bartenders).

 

We recently enjoyed a dinner at the Lotería Grill in which each of the dishes was prepared with KAHLÚA, including a flaming cheese and chile botana on which KAHLÚA Especial had been poured and set aflame. 

  Continue reading “KAHLÚA, Old and New” »



  • pinitbutton GAYOT Partners with Perfect Pairings (SM)
perfectpairings 150x150 GAYOT Partners with Perfect Pairings (SM)
Perfect Pairings (SM) Menu Campaign to benefit Meals-on-Wheels programs

By Sophie Gayot

 

We are happy to announce a partnership with the Perfect Pairings (SM) Menu Campaign, a new, pairing-based fundraiser taking place this October benefiting Citymeals on Wheels, Meals-on-Wheels of San Francisco and The Cooperative Feeding Program.

Restaurants in New York City, San Francisco and South Florida, almost 100 in total, will feature special food-and-beverage pairings on their menus, flagged by the Perfect Pairings logo. Each time one of these pairings is ordered, a donation ($1) is automatically made to local Meals-on-Wheels programs that deliver food and other vital services to thousands of people in need every day.

Continue reading “GAYOT Partners with Perfect Pairings (SM)” »



Fashionable Wine

on September 22nd, 2009
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22

Sep

  • pinitbutton Fashionable Wine
sn200024 1 300x185 Fashionable Wine

Marian Jansen op de Haar, Salvatore Ferragamo, and Alain Gayot at the Ferragamo Wine Dinner

By Alain Gayot

 

Most of us, especially women, associate the name Salvatore Ferragamo with a high-end designer of shoes and handbags. And for the right reasons. It was for noted actors that Salvatore originally designed the pieces. “Next time you see a photo of Marilyn Monroe with her skirt flying in the air, pay attention to her shoes,” says Salvatore Ferragamo, the designer’s grandson in charge of the Il Borro wine program back in Tuscany.

 

We had the opportunity to sample new releases from the estate at Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar at LA Live. A new era for sure, but the wines are crafted with the very same care and quality as the fashion items. The good thing, though, is that the pricing is actually quite reasonable, delivering a good value.

Continue reading “Fashionable Wine” »



24

Aug

  • pinitbutton Wine for a Good “Koz”
img 08842 190x300 Wine for a Good “Koz”

Three different grape varietals of KOZ Wine

By Jeff Hoyt

 

 

Saxophonist Dave Koz is used to seeing his name in lights, but now he can see it on wine labels. The six-time Grammy nominee took the time before his concert yesterday at the Hollywood Bowl to introduce his latest venture: wine.

 

 

Three different grape varietals of KOZ Wine – Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc, a Rhone style El Dorado “Red Alto” Blend, and, our favorite, the Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, are now on sale at Southern California Whole Foods Markets, and the musician will be making appearances to meet fans and sign bottles.

 

Continue reading “Wine for a Good “Koz”” »



21

Aug

  • pinitbutton A Sparkling Pear Libation

pear champagne 200x300 A Sparkling Pear Libation

Champagnerbratbirne fruit

By Sylvie Greil

 

 

Greetings from Southern Germany, where we had the pleasure of sampling a smooth, delicious “Pear Champagne.”

Reminiscent of a mild, moussey cider, its fine pearly bubbles play delicately on the tongue. Vintner Jörg Geiger originally labeled his libation Pear Champagne—until he got word from France that he better quickly change it to Birnenschaumwein (or pear bubbly), since, as everyone knows, Champagne can only come from, well, Champagne.

 

 

This particular sparkler centers around a fruit that has been used since 1760: Champagnerbratbirne, loosely translated as “Baked Champagne Pear,” or a pear that bakes well. It has garnered distinction from Slow Food Germany. www.manufaktur-joerg-geiger.de/

 

Continue reading “A Sparkling Pear Libation” »



Premiere with Rosé

on June 11th, 2009
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11

Jun

  • pinitbutton Premiere with Rosé
sophiegayotmarkpeel 300x176 Premiere with Rosé

Chefs Mark Peel of Campanile, Suzanne Tracht of Jar and Rick Moonen of RM Seafood with Sophie Gayot

By Sophie Gayot

Martini & Rossi Rosé was being poured with no limit (if you met the age limit, of course) last night at Campanile restaurant in Los Angeles, during the premiere of Bravo’s new television show “Top Chef Masters.”

 

For the occasion, Campanile chef/owner Mark Peel created a bite-sized dish to be paired with the sparkling wine: a roasted walnut and taleggio stuffed date. Peel also prepared six of his famous grilled cheese sandwiches, handed out to me by general manager Jay Perrin. Thanks to him I was able to try each of them. Due to the crowd I could not approach the gazpacho, the roasted beet salad, or the charcuterie and cheese station.

Some of the 24 chefs competing in the show were there, as well as host Kelly Choi. They all refused to give me any details, beside the fact that it was shot in the Los Angeles Warehouse District. I guess the best way to find out more is to simply watch the show, which takes competitive cooking to the next level. 

 



Sweet Songs, Fine Wine

on April 14th, 2009
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14

Apr

  • pinitbutton Sweet Songs, Fine Wine
flemings steakhouse 300x200 Sweet Songs, Fine Wine

Mick Fleetwood with Gayot Associate Publisher Greg McComb

While some older rock-and-rollers don’t know what to do with themselves when the spotlight moves away, Mick Fleetwood of Fleetwood Mac fame knew what he wanted to do: make wine! We joined the Rock and Roll Hall-of-Famer at Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar in Woodland Hills for some good food (try the lamb chops) paired with the drummer’s own wines. We enjoyed Mick Fleetwood Private Cellar Riesling, Private Cellar Chardonnay and Cabernet with a hearty dinner that featured impeccable service (Thanks, Tina!) But Mick still gets himself out of the cellar and into the studio, as evidenced by his new CD that’s climbing the charts, “Blue Again.” Thanks for the autograph, the wines, and all of your great tunes, Mick!
minilogo Sweet Songs, Fine Wine



Supporting Wine

on March 31st, 2009
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31

Mar

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alaingayotandpetermondavijr 300x225 Supporting Wine

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” »



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