The Ceviche Project Pops Up in Hollywood
The Writer's Room and Hot Lemon Productions present a one-night ceviche pop-up dinner.
June 18, 2013
The Writer’s Room mixologist Daniel Nelson and The Ceviche Project founder Octavio Olivas join forces this week.
This Wednesday, June 19, Ceviche Project’s Octavio Olivas and The Writer’s Room’s house mixologist Daniel Nelson will join forces at The Writer’s Room for a special dinner pairing an elaborate seafood menu with handcrafted cocktails. Dubbed A Celebration of Ceviche and Cocktails, this one-night-only event is an opportunity to experience the Ceviche Project, a recurring LA-based pop-up restaurant concept focused on fresh marinated fish.
With two seatings at 6:30 and 9 pm, the food served will showcase Olivas’ signature seafood dishes, like oysters on the half-shell with bespoke mignonettes and citrus-kissed ceviche. Four courses of seafood and shellfish, plus a tasty side treat, will be paired with libations mixed by Nelson that feature Casamigos tequila, Cruzan rum, and Mionetto wine. The dinner will conclude with a creative dessert course by Supperclub executive chef Guus Wickenhagen.
The Ceviche Project’s first pop-up event took place at Bar Covell in 2011, and the popular series has gone on to host events at Dominick’s, Soho House, L&E Oyster Bar, Speranza, and Palate Food & Wine. Inspired by a childhood of fishing and marinating fresh catches in Mexico City, Olivas founded the concept to bring people together to experience new fare in a group setting. This Ceviche Project event marks a collaboration between Hot Lemon Productions, run by former Food Network executive and Iron Chef creator Bruce Seidel, and The Writer’s Room, an intimate haunt tucked behind the Walk of Fame, which boasts a long literary lineage and history of catering to Hollywood’s elite.
Disrupting Slavery Benefit Gala
Stars join the Somaly Mam Foundation's fight against human trafficking at 41 Ocean.
June 17, 2013
On June 13, 2013, the Somaly Mam Foundation presented the Disrupting Slavery charity benefit at 41 Ocean in Santa Monica. Co-founder, human rights activist, and slavery survivor Somaly Mam was joined by a host committee of stars including AnnaLynne McCord, Serinda Swan, Pia Toscano, and Eva Amurri Martino to help stop the trafficking of women and children.
McCord, a longtime supporter of the cause, led the crowd at 41 Ocean—a new private members club from Jeremy Umland and Max Russo—in a live auction. Items up for bid included a membership to 41 Ocean, an on-set experience at Nickelodeon’s hit show See Dad Run, 2014 PGA Masters Golf Tournament badges, piano lessons at Babyface’s studio, and NY Fashion Week and South Beach excursions. The event also included a three-song acoustic performance by Knocked Up Kids, specialty cocktails courtesy of Don Benito Tequila and Akvinta Vodka, and a selection of canapés prepared by 41 Ocean’s executive chef Jimmy Martinez.
The Somaly Mam Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to abolishing modern slavery. About two million woman and children are sold into sexual slavery annually, making human trafficking a multi-billion dollar industry and the world’s fastest growing criminal enterprise. The foundation supports rescue programs in Southeast Asia, raises awareness of human trafficking by spotlighting its brave survivors, and engages the public and governments in the fight to eradicate modern slavery. Over $50,000 was raised in support of the cause.
LA Stationery Brand Bliss & Bone Launches
The customizable bridal stationary line offers countless creative possibilities.
June 17, 2013
Bliss & Bone’s luxe wedding collections pass up traditional paper materials to use elegant chiffons, tulle, foil, vellum, wax paper, acrylic, and more.
Bliss & Bone is a new LA-based online bridal stationery platform that addresses the discerning bride’s paper needs from start to finish. Launched June 10 by Hollywood Hills husband-and-wife team Cindy and Carl Skanderup, Bliss & Bone features chic, modern design suites that cover everything from save-the-dates and invitations, to custom cocktail napkins and rubber stamps.
The brand aims to take the stress out of the planning process by creating a one-stop-shop for all wedding-related accessories. Brides begin by purchasing a foundation package which includes a save-the-date, wedding invitation, thank-you cards, wedding website, inspiration board, and style guide. These packages come in six varying styles, from the rustic Prana collection, which features a neutral color palette and uses non-traditional raw materials like burlap, to the elegant-yet-edgy Lucient line with its shimmery blush tones and luxe papers.
Once settled on their foundation, brides have the opportunity to enhance their wedding day with accessories like menus, programs, and seating cards, as well as stamps, coasters, kraft tags, and other themed elements. Foundations start at $3,830 and range based on the designs and add-ons selected. Visit blissandbone.com for additional information or to purchase samples.
The 24 Hour Plays at The Broad Stage
Montblanc presents the third-annual charity theater event in LA on Saturday, June 22.
June 17, 2013
Charity Wakefield, Joshua Jackson, Gillian Jacobs, Leigh Kilton Smith, and Ramon Rodriguez attend The 24 Hour Plays in 2012.
For one night only on Saturday, June 22, some of Los Angeles' most talented actors and writers will team up for the The 24 Hour Plays—a charity theater event that takes a series of six one-act plays from conception to live performance in the span of 24 hours. Presented by Montblanc and benefiting the Los Angeles chapter of Urban Arts Partnership, this year’s performances will include 24 acclaimed actors like Melanie Griffith, Seth Green, Diane Neal, Justin Long, Rosie Perez, and many more. They will join six writers from the likes of The Daily Show, Modern Family, and Arrested Development, as well as six talented directors, a production team, and musical talent to complete the performance.
The creative process starts at The Broad Stage in Santa Monica the evening of June 21. There, each writer will conceive a ten-minute play overnight based on the talents of their cast; directors and actors will then rehearse the pieces throughout the day of the performances. At 8 pm on June 22, the curtain rises and LA theater fans can see the end results of the six plays.
The official afterparty (10 pm) will take place at The Shore Hotel in Santa Monica. Tickets for The 24 Hour Plays range from $100-$200 and are available at urbanarts.tix.com. 1310 11th St., Santa Monica, 212-966-5881
Photography by Michael Bezjian/Getty Images For Montblanc
What We're Reading
Father's Day gifts for foodies, much ado about a cinematic Shakespeare revival, and more.
June 14, 2013
Joss Whedon’s contemporary take on Shakespeare’s classic romantic comedy, Much Ado About Nothing, premiered in LA this week.
If you’re in the market for a home with historical merit, Walt Disney’s former 8-bedroom, 17-bathroom Carolwood Estate in Holmby Hills is up for grabs. The mansion’s $90 million price tag includes the miniature steam railroad system built by Disney himself, which served as the inspiration for his first theme park, Disneyland. [Vanity Fair]
Hollywood actor and restaurateur Harry Lewis, most famous for founding the Hamburger Hamlet chain, passed away on Sunday. Los Angeles Magazine pays homage to his celebrity patronage and 24-location legacy. [Los Angeles Magazine]
Kinky Boots the musical might have clean-swept this past Sunday’s Tonys, but A-listers like Scarlett Johansson, Sienna Miller, and Cicely Tyson stole the show on the red carpet. The Huffington Post names best-dressed stars on theater’s biggest night. [Huffington Post]
If food is the way to your father’s heart, forgo a tie this year in favor of these culinary-themed treats. From Godiva truffles to Craftsman Grill barbecue tools, LA Weekly has a list of Father’s Day gifts any foodie will love. [LA Weekly]
With Joss Whedon’s Much Ado About Nothing reigniting our love for Shakespeare, the LA Times takes a look at how the Bard has been translated cinematically over the years. [LA Times]
Photography by Elsa Guillet Chapuis
Dinner Plans: Cho Oishi
Father/son duo bring authentic shabu shabu to Los Angeles.
June 14, 2013
Cho Oishi’s interior combines ancient Japanese décor with more modern pieces.
For last-minute Father’s Day dinner plans, consider new Japanese venture Cho Oishi from father-son team Charlie and Nat Sukitjavanich. Housed in the lively entertainment complex Hollywood & Highland, Cho Oishi brings the Sukitjavanich’s 13 years of culinary experience to one of the city’s busiest intersections.
Designed by LA-based firm Spacecraft, the Cho Oishi interior combines modern minimalism with ancient Japanese elements via touches like artfully styled Japanese text. With wraparound views of the bustling Hollywood strip below, the space provides the ideal starting point for an evening at the Arclight, the Hollywood Bowl, or the Dolby Theatre underneath it.
Similarly, the debut menu comprises twists on traditional Japanese appetizers and salads. Innovative sushi rolls also play a starring role, with options like the Snow White—a spicy combination of snow crab, avocado, smelt roe, and asparagus topped with white tuna and spicy masago—on offer. The restaurant’s true specialty, though, is shabu shabu, and any guest would be remiss to miss out on the ultra-tender kobe wagyu rib-eye beef. Additional beef and pork options are also available, and all of Cho Oishi’s shabu shabu dishes are served with fresh vegetables, noodles, tofu, Japanese mushrooms, and seaweed. 6801 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, 323-464-0500
Weekend Recommender: June 13-16
Lisa Zane performs, Andy Warhol works come to L'Ermitage, a jet lands on Rodeo Drive....
June 13, 2013
A full-scale model of the Learjet 85 aircraft will “land” on Rodeo Drive this Father’s Day.
Lisa Zane Performs at Caulfield’s Bar & Dining Room
Thursday, June 13, 7 and 9 pm
LA-based singer/songwriter Lisa Zane (sister to actor Billy Zane) performs twice at Caulfield’s Bar & Dining Room this Thursday. Expect selections from her vast repertoire, which combines folk music, opera, and rock. Call the resto at 310-388-6860 to reserve a table. 9360 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, 310-388-6860
Andy Warhol Exhibit Debuts at L'Ermitage
Starts Friday, June 14
Beginning this Friday, the lobby of L’Ermitage hotel will be transformed into a gallery showcasing “Icons & Symbols,” a curated exhibit that comprises original Andy Warhol prints compiled by the newly-opened ЯEVOLVER gallery in Beverly Hills. Among the 12 pieces featured are iconic images of Marilyn Monroe, Campbell’s Soup, and Elizabeth Taylor. The exhibit will be on display through August 31. 9291 Burton Way, Beverly Hills, 310-278-3344
Vitamin A Trunk Show at Everything But Water
Saturday, June 15, 12-5 pm
The upscale swim boutique will showcase Laguna-based swimwear brand Vitamin A, along with personal fittings and advice by designer Amahlia Stevens. Each guest will receive a headband with purchase, and can enter for a chance to score a swimsuit and cover-up of their choice. 555 Shops at Mission Viejo, Mission Viejo, 949-347-7056
Rodeo Drive’s Concours d’Elegance
Sunday, June 16, 10 am-4 pm
For dads who love all modes of luxury transportation, check out Rodeo Drive on Father’s Day for the 50th anniversary celebration of Learjet. Hosted by Rodeo’s Concours d’Elegance, the event will feature a full-scale mock-up of the ground-breaking Learjet 85 aircraft in the center of the street, surrounded by vintage and racing cars and motorcycles from world-renowned brands. 200 Rodeo Dr.
Photography by Jason Tinacci on behalf of Flexjet
The Cosmo Comes to Hollywood
The new nightspot offers a dramatic design and takes on the traditional Cosmopolitan drink.
June 13, 2013
The Cosmo nightclub debuted on Hollywood Boulevard May 29, offering a more exclusive alternative to the nearby club scene. Created by Boulevard Nightlife Group founder Suk Sung (also known for LA’s Supperclub, Lure, and Roxbury), The Cosmo combines a dramatic design scheme with a lineup of impressive DJ talent to create an intimate yet exciting nightlife environment.
Designed by Kris Keith of LA-based Spacecraft, the interior has a gothic feel with ribbed vaulting and high archways that accent the custom crystal chandeliers dangling above the dance floor. Tufted booths surround the dance area on both sides, while a mezzanine level boasts a VIP suite and private DJ booth. Club connoisseurs will be pleased by the state-of-the-art EAW sound system and lighting by Fyxx Entertainment, which includes three LED walls.
The initial cocktail menu features several riffs on the classic Cosmopolitan, including The Cherry Cosmo with Grey Goose Cherry Noir, orange liqueur, white cranberry juice, and a splash of lemon juice. Martinis are also prominent, with selections like The Cucumber Martini, which mixes Grey Goose, Grand Marnier, simple syrup, and cucumber and lime juices. Currently open only on Wednesday nights, The Cosmo has plans to expand to Friday and Saturday evenings soon. For more information or table reservations, e-mail email@example.com. 6364 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, 323-957-1925
Q&A: DOMA's Dustin Trani
The rising Beverly Hills chef talks unique flavor combos and new show Knife Fight.
June 12, 2013
Chef Dustin Trani mans the kitchen at Beverly Hills restaurant DOMA.
Dustin Trani is not afraid of odd flavor combinations—in fact, they’ve become the cornerstone of many of his most delicious dishes. A fourth-generation chef, Trani began cooking at age 6, honing the craft in his family’s well-loved San Pedro venture J. Trani’s before teaming up with Dan Tana’s owner Sonja Perenvevic to open DOMA Beverly Hills (362 N. Camden Dr., Beverly Hills, 310-277-7346).
There, Trani has gained recognition for modernizing farm-to-table Italian cuisine with fresh takes on pastas and inventive seasonal seafood dishes. To boot, he was recently tapped as one of the initial competitors on the Esquire Network’s Knife Fight, a premiering-soon show about an underground food competition held here in LA. Trani told us more about the show, DOMA’s fare, and the LA food community in general.
What's a flavor combination at DOMA that doesn't seem like it would work, but is actually amazing on the palate?
DUSTIN TRANI: I try to incorporate the Thai method of cooking into all of my creations. Thai cuisine is an absolute play on all senses—citrusy, sweet, salty, and crunchy. We have a coco tortellini filled with shrimp and scallop mousse, served with sweet chili butter sauce, peanut butter, and sesame powder on our menu. That’s about as odd as you can get, and in that the dish the flavors love each other.
Tell us about Knife Fight.
DT: Knife Fight is an exhilarating cooking show unlike [anything else] on TV. Real chefs show you exactly what the industry is like—it’s simply the best chefs at their best. Personally, it was an absolutely awesome experience and I hope to compete again soon.
Is there one chef you'd be nervous to cook against?
DT: I don’t really think I’d be nervous to cook against anyone. I never mentored long-term under any chefs so I was forced to establish my cooking identity very young in my career. Now at 29, with 20 years of restaurant experience under my belt, I’m very comfortable in all aspects of food. I feel I have a strong base of knowledge to go toe-to-toe with anyone, really.
Is there a big community among LA chefs?
DT: In the last 10 years, LA has made its mark in the US restaurant culture and has seen some amazing talent emerge. We’re here to hold our own against New York and Chicago, and I think the city of LA really knows and appreciates good food.
Other than DOMA, what are some of your favorite LA restaurants to dine at?
DT: I’d say my favorite haunts begin with the no-sign taco shops and locals-only hole-in-the-walls, and extend on to Red Medicine (8400 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, 323-651-5500) with Jordan Kahn, Michael Voltaggio’s INK (8360 Melrose Ave., Ste. 107, West Hollywood, 323-651-5866), and my all-time favorite Beverly Hills landmark—Spago (176 N. Canon Dr., Beverly Hills, 310-385-0880). I had one of my first eye-opening meal experiences at Spago at age 15; [it] changed my entire perspective on cooking.
Trina Merry's 'Objectified' at ESMoA
The body painter brings live art to the new lab at the El Segundo Museum of Art on June 15.
June 12, 2013
Live models become furnishings in Trina Merry’s 'Objectified' series at the El Segundo Museum of Art.
For one day only on June 15, renowned body painter Trina Merry will transform the new lab at the El Segundo Museum of Art into a showcase for her “Objectified” series. The exhibit will feature four separate installations with painted live models to demonstrate our attachment to household items.
Taking place within the museum’s lab and outside in an RV, Merry will create environments ranging from a Martha Stewart-inspired country cottage to a Tiki-style man cave. Each area—adorned with real furnishings crafted in partnership with artist Theresa Because—will incorporate live models painted to blend in with their surroundings. Styled to replace household items like coffee tables, chairs, lamps, and vases, the 15 male and female models will change their poses every 10 minutes to create an ever-evolving artistic display.
Those intrigued by the live art process can watch Merry create her distinct pieces from 10 am-5 pm at 200 Main Street, followed by the main unveiling at the lab from 5-8 pm. The artist will be present throughout the installation for impromptu Q&A sessions. While in the museum, guests should also browse TRUTH, ESMoA’s current art experience, which examines the concept of truth in art over the past five centuries. 208 Main St., El Segundo, 424-277-1020
LAC celebrates the women of its May/June 2013 issue at Palihouse in West Hollywood.