Weekend Recommender: August 22-25
Enjoy top food and wine, catch Kristin Chenoweth solo, Muse till midnight at LACMA....
August 22, 2013
The third annual Food & Wine Festival brings top culinary talent like chef Brian Malarkey to LA.
Third Annual Los Angeles Food & Wine Festival
Thursday, August 22-Sunday, August 25; see schedule of events
LA’s four-day celebration of the country’s top culinary talent will feature 120 star chefs, 200 wineries, and musical performances from artists like Gavin DeGraw and DJ ?uestlove. Highlights from the extensive roster of tasting events, seminars, cooking demonstrations, and meals include Giada De Laurentiis’s Festa Italiana dinner on Thursday, the Power Lunch Series across several restaurants like Scarpetta, L’Ermitage, and Hinoki & The Bird on Friday; and Lexus’s Grand Tasting and Grant Achatz Cocktail Demonstration on Saturday. To purchase general and VIP tickets to the events, which benefit local charities including Share Our Strength and are produced by Coastal Luxury Management, visit lafw.com. Grand Ave., Downtown Los Angeles
La Mer Collections Custom Watch Pop Cart
Thursday, August 22, 6-8 p.m.
Join La Mer founder and designer Martine Ilana at the La Mer Collections Pop Cart at The Grove, and design a custom watch using her eclectic materials including faces, leather straps, and stones inspired by her travels through South Africa, Bali, Italy, and Thailand. Items are exclusively priced for the event, which is cohosted by fashion bloggers Sheryl Luke of Walk in Wonderland and Stephanie Liu of Honey & Silk. 189 The Grove Dr., Los Angeles
Kristin Chenoweth at the Hollywood Bowl
Friday, August 23 and Saturday August 24; 8 p.m.
In her debut solo show at the Bowl, Emmy and Tony-winning actress and recording artist Kristin Chenoweth collaborates with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and renowned conductor Kevin Stites. The ebullient entertainer will perform her popular screen and Broadway hits from shows including Wicked, Glee, and Les Misérables. Visit hollywoodbowl.com for tickets. 2301 N. Highland Ave., Hollywood, 323-850-2000
17th Annual Muse ‘Til Midnight at LACMA
Saturday, August 24, 8 p.m.- midnight
Score after-hours access to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art’s current “Hans Richter: Encounters” exhibit, which showcases 150 of the German artist’s works alongside contributions by his colleagues like Marcel Duchamp, Fernand Leger, and Man Ray. The annual Muse event surrounding the exhibit will also include corresponding art-making, workshops, musical entertainment, drinks, and dishes from LACMA executive chef Jason Fullilove. $45 tickets ($25 for LACMA Muse members, and $35 for LACMA members), can be purchased on lacma.org or by calling 323-857-6010. 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Mid City
Photography by Barnaby Draper Studios
Prohibition-Era Spirits at Ebanos Crossing
A daring new cocktail-dining concept in Downtown LA recalls the jazz age.
August 22, 2013
Imagine a time during the ‘20s and ‘30s when premium spirits like tequila, mezcal, rum, and whiskey were forbidden, withheld, and sacred; accessible only to the adventurous and unlawful by way of secretive expeditions from Mexico to the United States, through South-central Texas. Ebanos Crossing, the brand-new “cocktail-dining” concept which soft-opened in Downtown LA in early August but will be hosting formal grand openings in September, recalls the mystery, intrigue, and flavors of this stimulating journey through an award-winning cocktail program by mixologist and beverage director Philip Ward.
Named after the Los Ebanos Ford—a floating bridge along the Rio Grande that transported bootleg liquor smugglers from Mexico to Texas—Ebanos Crossing marks a marriage between Urban America and Luminosity Entertainment. The two leading hospitality groups give rise to a transporting enclave, evident from the moment patrons cross into the 5,500-square-foot den of antiquity, laden with old-world furnishings, lavish chandeliers, brick walls, and rich leather sofas, occupying two adjoining spaces.
Small-batch labels of once-illicit spirits like Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal and Laird’s 12-year-old Apple Brandy serve as the cornerstones of cocktail creations designed by Ward, co-owner of Mayahuel in New York. His drinks menu is divided into three categories inspired by geographic routes: El Norte pays tribute to the Northern trails with rum and whiskey drinks; El Sur emphasizes mezcal and tequila from the Mexican border, like the Angel’s Flight with Del Maguey Vida, pamplemousse, aperol, and lime juice; and Ebanos Crossing is the where the northern and southern routes meet. Inventive libations from this category include the signature Ebano’s Old Fashioned, with bacon fat-washed Buffalo Trace, Del Maguey Chichicappa, and angostura bitters.
Small, sharable “menos hambre” dishes, and larger “mas hambre” entrees are created to complement the spicy, potent cocktails. Oysters baked with Habanero lime butter and adobo sauce, braised pork and black forest ham media noche sliders, and authentic paella with mussels, clams, shrimp, and chorizo complete the sensory experience of crossing the border. 200 S. Hill St., Downtown LA, 213-935-8829
Photography by Scott Tomaino
Q&A: Scenic Route's Josh Duhamel
The star of the upcoming thriller talks fear, road forks, and fatherhood.
August 21, 2013
|Josh Duhamel stars opposite Dan Fogler in Scenic Route, a thriller from Vertical Entertainment, coming to theaters this Friday (August 23).|
Get ready to see Safe Haven and Transformers actor Josh Duhamel as you’ve never seen him before—mussed, bloodied, and emotionally bare—as he’s stranded for days in the desert with an old buddy (Dan Fogler as Carter) after a road trip veers off course in Scenic Route. The film, which opens this Friday (August 23), follows two longtime friends who duke everything out with a Lord of the Flies brand of savagery, and includes an ending that will have everyone talking.
We caught up the star of the psychological thriller, set to continue down a darker path by next portraying a PTSD-stricken social worker in Strings and opposite Hilary Swank in the story of a terminally ill woman in You’re Not You, to discuss the desert, career crossroads, and perhaps his biggest role yet, father to the son he’s expecting within the next few weeks with wife Fergie of the Black Eyed Peas.
What was attractive to you about Scenic Route?
JOSH DUHAMEL: It was just a beast of a script, with really wicked dialogue. And Kyle Killen is a great writer. This is one of those scripts that you wait for; it’s the kind of movie that I got into this business for. I read it and I said, I have to do this. Plus, I get to have a mohawk.
Tell me about your character, Mitchell. How are you similar to him?
JD: I guess there was a point in my life when I wasn’t sure what kind of a man I was; what kind of a man I was going to be. And this guy’s sort of stuck at that point in his life. And sometimes it takes something like this, like getting stuck on the side of the road in the desert for four days, to shake you out of your rut. You had dreams to do something, and for whatever reason, you’re not able to achieve those things that you thought you would. I think that anybody can relate to that.
What was the dynamic like between you and Dan?
JD: Dan and I had a great time; he’s so perfect for this part. I’ve always sort of looked at myself as blue collar in this business, because I wasn’t raised with a theater background. There was none of that in North Dakota. So I’ve had to figure out how to go to places in my head, and grind my way through it. And Dan grew up in New York, and has done a lot of theater. But we both understood the kind of work it would take to make this movie work. It was going to take a lot of time, for not a lot of money. It was a pure passion project.
Your character undergoes a transformation. How did you change, or what you did you learn about yourself through filming this?
JD: I learned a lot about myself. It was one of those things, where if you’re scared of something, you should do it. And I was terrified of this. I didn’t know if I had what it took to get through it; if, with all of this dialogue, I would make a fool of myself. And so, I really learned that I could handle a lot more than I ever thought I could.
If you were stuck somewhere and forced to take stock of your own life at this moment, what would be going through your mind?
JD: Fortunately at this point in my life I feel very, very blessed. I’ve got an amazing woman, I’ve got a baby on the way. I’m talking about a movie that I love, and personally I feel really fulfilled. Everything is good right now, and I don’t ever want to take that for granted.
Photography by John Shearer/Getty Images
Rockwell Revives Hits from Luhrmann Films
The dinner theater series mixes tunes from Romeo + Juliet, Moulin Rouge!, more.
August 21, 2013
The cast of For the Record: Baz Luhrmann, which opens Thursday at Rockwell: Table & Stage.
Famous star-crossed lovers unite in For The Record: Baz Luhrmann, a new rendition of For the Record’s series at Rockwell: Table & Stage. The new 360-degree live dinner theater event starring Rumer Willis (CW’s 90210) as Juliet runs this Thursday, August 22 through October 19, and honors legendary Australian film director Luhrmann with interactive musical revivals of songs from his romantic masterpieces like Romeo + Juliet, Moulin Rouge!, Strictly Ballroom, and the recent smash hit, The Great Gatsby.
“Lady Marmalade,” “Sparkling Diamonds,” and “Like a Virgin” are just some of the engaging numbers in this new adaptation by Shane Scheel, Christopher Lloyd Bratten, and Anderson Davis set against scenic Verona, Paris, New York, and Australia. Newcomer Willis joins a talented cast with stage, screen, and music experience, including Ginifer King (Nickelodeon’s Haunted Hathaways), Jackie Seiden (New Year’s Eve), Milena Govich (FX’s Rescue Me), Lindsay Pearce (Fox’s Glee), and Derek Ferguson (NBC’s Smash). They creatively make use of the entire room by performing on the main stage, bar, and even right up to your seat at the swanky, newly-renovated supper club.
The newly-minted Rockwell venue—which has recently hosted residencies by Jeff Goldblum, Molly Ringwald, and will soon welcome Wayne Brady—also operates as a full restaurant. In conjunction with performances of For the Record, a $38 prix-fixe menu will consist of three Luhrmann-themed courses. As an “overture,” opt for frisee salad with poached egg or moules, move on to “feature presentation” dishes like outback steak frites and poulet doble, and request an “encore” dessert such as Leonardo DiCoconut or Mocha Chocolata. For drinks, order the Star-Crossed Love (Grey Goose Cherry Noir, lemon and St. Germain), or if you dare, the Dram of Poison (Bombay Sapphire, sweet vermouth, lemon juice and strawberries).
For tickets, ranging from $25-$55 VIP Seats, call 323-661-6163 x20 or visit rockwell-la.com. Doors open 90 minutes prior to the show. 1714 N. Vermont Ave., Los Feliz
Photography by Lewis Payton
Culver City's New Best-Kept Secret: Bucato
Chef Evan Funke serves handmade Italian pastas on the hush in the Helms Bakery District.
August 20, 2013
Chef Evan Funke brings fresh, handmade pasta dishes to Culver City at his coveted new Bucato Restaurant.
The last week of July, chef Evan Funke’s Italian-inspired Bucato Restaurant made a clandestine arrival in the Culver City retail complex best known for once housing the industrial Helms Bakery. In a further nod to history, the LA native, formerly of Spago and Rustic Canyon, named his intimate new pasta haven Bucato (“laundry” in Italian), after its long-term post as Beacon Laundry. The name is a riff on the parallel between the laborious old Italian techniques of hand-washing and air-drying laundry, and the delicate art of crafting pasta, which Funke does deftly in a temperature-controlled pasta laboratorio upstairs.
But handmade pasta “fatto a mano”—the product of skills Funke refined through study with master pasta maker Alessandra Spisni of La Vecchia Scuola Bolognese in Italy, and produces with the help of sfoglino Kosaku Kawamura—comes at a price. Photography and cell phones (talking, texting, and photo-sharing) are strictly forbidden, so that patrons can savor their food and company just as the Italians do, and reservations can only be made on the day of.
The bright, upscale space, remodeled by Undisclosable Inc., is full of rich wood, an open kitchen, geometric touches, and the dark, austere palette of a chiaroscuro painting. Sit inside or outside at one of two modern patio spaces to feast on fresh, light, and smaller-portioned pastas, intended to be enjoyed alongside an array of other rustic Italian plates. Celebrating simplicity, Funke’s dishes utilize an average of three to five ingredients, but veer on the adventurous side (think pigeon, barracuda, and pigs head).
Begin with fresh-baked focaccia topped with roasted tomatoes and sal secco olives, the heirloom tomato panzanella, or octopus charred in the wood-burning oven. Share the stuffed squash blossoms or sea bream crudo with fennel and mint, before moving on to Funke’s signature pastas. The dishes featured will rotate regularly, but highlights of the moment include the fluffy tortelloni Romagnoli (served with brown butter, sage, and parmigiano reggiano) and the thin tagliatelle with rabbit sugo and ragusano cheese.
The Porchetta Truck, a plated portion of the popular porchetta Funke served at his truck, is a new addition to the menu that will switch up seasonally and frequently—though don’t count on hearing about it over the Internet. For same-day reservations, call 310-876-0286. 3280 Helms Ave., Culver City
Photography by Scott Smith
Delta Air Lines Summer Celebration
An 'elevated' event honored the season and showcased the airline’s in-flight experience.
August 19, 2013
Delta Air Lines celebrated summer and its new partnerships with an intimate, late-season soiree at a four-story Beverly Hills estate on Thursday, August 15. Delta customers, tastemakers, and a fan base of stars including John Stamos, Emmy Rossum, and Kate Walsh got a taste of the airline’s in-flight experience, gourmet food and beverages, and music by DJ Mia Moretti and violinist Margot of The Dolls at this elegant affair on Beverly Grove Drive.
After crossing the Delta Blue carpet, guests mingled over three floors and a rooftop pool deck, all boasting Delta’s new offerings. A display of heritage cars and VIP transportation—coming soon to LAX—arrived courtesy of partner Porsche, and Malin + Goetz showcased the beauty products provided to Delta business elite travelers. Executive chef John Mitchell of Lyfe Kitchen, whose healthy snacks will be offered gratis on Delta’s new West Coast shuttle service between LAX and SFO starting September 3, supplied his signature flatbreads and edamame hummus. Food was also featured from chef Michael Chiarello, who provides the in-flight fare for Delta business elite service between NYC and LAX/SFO, and NYC to Seattle. Guests also sipped on specialty Sky Bar cocktails, which were inspired by drinks from Delta’s Sky Clubs around the world.
Stamos, who was gearing up for his 50th birthday today (August 19), was in celebratory spirits. On the heels of a festive pre-birthday trip with former Full House costar Bob Saget to San Francisco earlier in the week, he jovially conversed with guests and Delta members late into the evening. Also helping Stamos celebrate were friends from his stint on Glee, current cast members Darren Criss and Chord Overstreet, who hardly seemed hampered by a 15-hour day of shooting. The newly single Rossum glowed in a Rebecca Minkoff dress and Alice + Olivia shoes, and despite the fact that basketball stars Tyson Chandler of the Knicks and Jordan Farmar of the Los Angeles Lakers (of which Delta is the official airline) play on rival teams, there was nothing but friendly skies.
'Hollywood Graffiti' Depicts Film Icons
LA artist's spray-painted pieces pay homage to movie greats at the ArcLight Hollywood.
August 19, 2013
Long before he was regularly exhibiting at the legendary ArcLight Cinemas, Greg Auerbach was inspired to spray-paint one of his favorite filmmakers Alfred Hitchcock onto a collage of murder mystery newspaper clippings that captured the icon’s cinematic contributions. Three years, a Kickstarter campaign, and well over a dozen exhibits later, the prolific artist’s 28-piece “Hollywood Graffiti” series is now on display at the ArcLight Hollywood in his biggest ArcLight show to date through October 9.
“It was a total passion thing for me, and since then, it’s turned into my life,” says Auerbach, a film and street art enthusiast, whose collection caught fire in Hollywood and has fast grown from 12 original pieces to nearly 50. Why was Hitchcock his ideal launching pad? “I love Hitchcock films, and I think his image is so perfect. Everyone knows who Hitchcock is—his outline and silhouette were perfect starting out because I think it really suited the medium. For me, I wanted that on my wall; I made the piece for myself. I thought it would be really cool to have this five-by-six-foot piece of Hitchcock. And it took off.”
Film greats Woody Allen, Clint Eastwood, Audrey Hepburn, Charlie Chaplin, Bruce Lee, Steven Spielberg, and Marilyn Monroe all followed in the series of 57 x 72-inch cinematic tributes. Auerbach does all of the frame-building, stenciling, and spray-painting through the stencils himself. The news articles are sourced from archives of the LA Times, New York Times, London Times, and more, printed on real newsprint to age authentically. Each piece utilizes about 200 articles, deliberately selected and sliced to showcase the subject’s career and livelihood: think Woody Allen over vintage articles on sex, therapy, jazz, Jewish mothers, and WWII. “I try to talk about their influences, how they impact society, and what was going on when they were alive,” the artist says.
His newest works employ unique materials like real bullet shells and butterflies, and expand beyond film stars to honor other legends like Hemingway, Albert Einstein, and Bob Marley. A portion of the show’s proceeds will be donated to Free Arts for Abused Children and Children’s Burn Foundation, and the artist will next move on to the Beverly Hills artSHOW and Art Basel SCOPE in Miami. 6360 W. Sunset Blvd., Hollywood, 323-464-1478
Sanctuary Clothing's Interactive New Site and Expansion
The cutting-edge fashion brand launches a new e-commerce site and shop-in-shops.
August 19, 2013
Sanctuary clothing introduced a new site on August 15, alongside a roster of special events and shop-in-shops coming this fall.
Shopping modern women’s fashion and lifestyle brand Sanctuary Clothing, favored by celebrities including Alessandra Ambrosio, Isla Fisher, and Eva Longoria, just got a bit more interactive. The progressive, ultra-hip line’s creative new e-commerce site, which was just unveiled August 15, now affords shoppers a customized and engaging way to browse videos, behind-the-scenes features, and product spotlights. Plus, the new site launches alongside a roster of fashion events and Macy’s and Dillard’s shop-in-shop collaborations coming this fall season.
In a few simple clicks, website viewers can go behind the scenes of Sanctuary campaign shoots, peruse new product lookbooks, see which celebrities are currently spotted in which clothing items, and get an expert “designer’s edit” of recommendations. For instance, the latter suggests pairing a “statement sweatshirt” like the easy Norma grey tunic with a black leather vegan fluted skirt, and Rayban vintage wayfarer shades.
Originally touted as a “master pant maker,” Sanctuary Clothing founder and creative director Debra Polanco’s company has expanded tenfold since its 1997 inception, and now boasts contemporary but classic pieces like army shirt jackets, vegan leather leggings and vests, “charmer skinny” fitted jeans, and a wide selection of covetable modern jackets—all easy accessible on the new site.
This fall, a Bloomingdale’s HOT event on Saturday, September 21 from 1-4 p.m. at stores across the country (including Fashion Valley in California) will gift shoppers who spend over $100 with a Sanctuary makeup bag and tapestry red nail polish. In October, ten new Sanctuary shop-in-shop stores will open in Dillard’s Southern locations, and seven more of the in-store shops will come to Macy’s locations across the country. Until then, the comprehensive new website will serve as your one-stop shop and ultimate clothing haven.
What We're Reading
Orange is the New Black's author on 'prison lit,' fashion from The Butler, and more.
August 16, 2013
Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan in The Butler.
With everyone buzzing about Netflix’s Orange is the New Black, LA Times talks “prison literature” with the once-incarcerated author of the book that inspired the series. [LA Times]
Oscar-nominated costume designer Ruth Carter tells The Hollywood Reporter how she dressed some of history’s leading political ladies in Lee Daniels’ The Butler, which hits theaters today. [The Hollywood Reporter]
LA Magazine rounds up some creative libations to honor National Rum Day today [LA Mag].
For last licks on summer BBQ season, LAist has a list of the best local butchers where you can score something grill-worthy. [LAist]
Bon Appetit ranks LA’s 39-seat Alma the number one new restaurant in America. [Bon Appetit]
It seems Downton Abbey has made the servants quarters a valuable addition to tours of antique mansions. [LA Weekly]
Beyonce’s new pixie cut inspired the Huffington Post to take a look at stars’ most memorable hair transformations. [Huffington Post]
Image via The Hollywood Reporter
Dinner Plans: Sadie Kitchen and Lounge
The resto upgrades to a worldly menu, elegant outdoor patio, and new entertainment.
August 16, 2013
Sadie Kitchen and Lounge is the globally-inspired eatery that moved into the former home of Les Deux, the nightclub infamously frequented by the cast of mid ‘00s hit The Hills, in January 2012. A year and a half later, following a full design and menu makeover, the Hollywood restaurant is adding the “lounge” suffix as it reopens its celebrated outdoor courtyard, complete with live entertainment.
Executive chef Jonathan Moulton is up to the challenge of matching the sophistication of the revamped patio space, which offers the intimacy of a plush living room transported outdoors amid greenery and glistening porch lighting. His new menu draws on international influences, which are evident in both sharable plates and standalone entrees. To start, buttermilk biscuits arrive alongside bacon-flavored red eye butter and taste homemade. The Middle Eastern grilled octopus, authentically flavored with Moroccan spices like shawarma, is fast becoming a menu favorite, and the ahi tuna tiradito serves up sashimi the Peruvian way, with aji amarillo chili saffron sauce. For entrees, the fried chicken and sweet potato waffles is already gaining ground as a Sadie signature with maple sriracha syrup added to an already inventive composition. Meanwhile, true meat lovers should indulge in the New York steak rubbed with mole, or ham chop finished with bourbon glaze.
Drinks by mixologist Giovanni Martinez (The Buffalo Club, Fig & Olive) are designed to complement the savory new dishes. From his lighter, seasonal selections, try the Summer Lovin,’ with Bombay dry gin, strawberry-melon syrup, aperol, lemon juice, and soda. The spicy Temperado, comprising cachaca, silver tequila, fresh lime juice, cilantro, and jalapeno, pairs well with the rich spices of the Moroccan octopus. Or, opt for his heavier specialties like the Kentucky Ninja, a wild mix of Japanese single-malt whisky, bourbon, lemon juice, and lavender-infused wild honey served in a Peychaud’s bitters-rinsed glass.
Musical director Aaron Colbert and special events guru Jenn Laskey are the driving forces behind Sadie’s new nightlife component. DJs will play patio-side sets—from funk to soul to livelier pop on the weekends—alongside live music performances and special events. Starting the week of August 27, a Stacked night on Tuesdays will welcome guest DJs and bartenders, Sadie Sessions on Wednesdays will feature events and live entertainment like the Project Ethos fashion party August 28, and Thursdays will play host to nightlife veteran Laskey’s weekly party with the Beat Ventriloquists—all brought to you in a beautiful outdoor space. 1638 N. Las Palmas, Hollywood, 323-467-0200
Fashion shoot: December 2013 issue of Los Angeles Confidential magazine.