What We’re Reading
Inside The Great Gatsby with Baz Luhrmann, Marilyn Monroe sculpture to be moved….
April 26, 2013
Baz Luhrmann, director of The Great Gatsby, promotes the coming-soon film in Canada.
Time to plan a weekend getaway: it’s your last chance to view the Marilyn Monroe sculpture in downtown Palm Springs. The work is being relocated, but not before they laud the star with a month-long celebration leading up to what would have been her 86th birthday. [LA Times]
Or, keep your journey closer to home by witnessing Highland Park’s upward expansion at Sonny’s Hideaway, an opening-soon restaurant by chef Jimmy Everett of New York’s esteemed Marea and Eleven Madison Park. [Grubstreet Los Angeles]
Check out this unique space-inspired fashion spread Los Angeles Magazine did with the Push Girls—a group of LA-based women battling paraplegia and quadriplegia featured on a new Sundance Channel show. [Los Angeles Magazine]
Speaking of creative style, we’ve been anxiously awaiting Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby, but our anticipation seems small in comparison to Luhrmann’s. The Hollywood Reporter dives into the director’s long journey to make the film, and provides an inside peek at what we can expect to see. [The Hollywood Reporter]
Post Earth Day downer, unfortunately. Southern California has once again been honored with having the most polluted air in the country. This comes on the heels of news that we also boast the worst traffic. [LA Weekly]
Photography by George Pimentel/WireImage
Dinner Plans: Mercato di Vetro
The WeHo hotspot for Italian cuisine launches a new dinner menu and happy hour specials.
April 26, 2013
SBE group’s Mercato di Vetro introduced a revamped menu last month, which spotlights Mediterranean-inspired share plates and seasonal dishes by chef Danny Elmaleh and new chef de cuisine Freddy Vargas (formerly of Scarpetta). More recently, the resto introduced a “ciao hour” special on April 22 that pairs small plates and craft cocktails, and runs from 6-8 pm Sundays-Fridays.
New dinner menu standouts include a colorful beet salad with whipped Valdeón cheese, hazelnut praline, and oranges, or a fresh kale Caesar salad prepared with an anchovy lemon vinaigrette and crispy crouton. For something heartier, pick a pasta dish like the pici noodle with rock shrimp, chili, and basil pesto, or gnocchi with mushrooms and black pepper. Round your meal out with fresh housemade gelato.
Whether or not you arrive in time for ciao hour, be sure to explore mixologist Rob Floyd’s new cocktails: the focus is on innovative creations that complement Mercato di Vetro’s Italian core. The Mercato Devine combines mint and Jack Daniels, while the Vetrosexual is a light-in-calories libation that mixes vodka, muddled raspberries, and fresh lime juice. During the ciao hour special, select cocktails and upscale bar bites—such as oyster sliders, mushroom focaccia, and spicy pickles—will be specially priced. 9077 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood, 310-859-8369
Weekend Recommender: April 25-28
Score some vintage Chanel, get styled by Cynthia Vincent, indulge in Top Chef's pig roast....
April 25, 2013
Chef Nyesha Arrington of Wilshire Restaurant cooks a whole hog at the 2012 Top Chef Pig Roast.
Vintage Chanel Trunk Show at Scoop Brentwood
Thursday, April 25-28, 10 am-6 pm (11 am-5 pm, Sunday)
Scoop NYC and What Goes Around Comes Around are teaming up to present covetable vintage Chanel handbags and jewelry at Scoop Brentwood. Don’t miss this opportunity to score one-of-a-kind accessories from the luxe designer, like the timeless quilted lambskin handbags. 216 26th St., Santa Monica, 424-238-5499
Dancing with the Art World at the Hammer
Friday, April 26, 5:30-8:30 pm; Saturday, April 27, 10 am-8 pm
The Hammer Museum brings together a select group of artists, choreographers, curators, and more to examine the intersection between visual art and dance. The 2012 film Merce Cunningham Dance Company Park Avenue Armory Event will be shown on Friday evening, while Saturday’s agenda includes a full day of panels, performances, and more. Tickets are complimentary but first come, first served at the box office. 10899 Wilshire Blvd., Westwood, 310-443-7000
Egg Cooking Class at Cecconi’s
Saturday, April 27, 10 am-12 pm
Head to West Hollywood’s Cecconi’s for a decadent brunch boasting egg dishes like poached eggs with hollandaise sauce, egg ravioli, and a lemon tart with meringue. The catch? You have to cook the meal yourself, with guidance from Cecconi’s chef Andrea Cavaliere and chef de cuisine Alessio Biangini. $65 reservations can be booked by calling the restaurant at 310-432-2000. 8764 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood
Cynthia Vincent Styling Day at The Closet at Fred Segal
Saturday, April 27, 1-5 pm
Designer Cynthia Vincent will make a rare in-store appearance at The Closet at Fred Segal, where she’ll offer shoppers personal styling advice as she showcases the summer Twelfth St. by Cynthia Vincent collection. The afternoon includes Champagne, chocolates, and giveaways, as well as special gifts for any guests that make in-store purchases. 500 Broadway, Santa Monica, 310-451-2202
Top Chef Pig Roast at Wilshire Restaurant
Sunday, April 28, 1-4 pm
Join chef Nyesha Arrington of Wilshire Restaurant as she rallies some of the best talents off Top Chef, Top Chef Masters, and Top Chef Just Desserts for an afternoon pig roast benefiting Share Our Strength Taste of the Nation Los Angeles. Toques like Ilan Hall (The Gorbals), C.J. Jacobson (The Mercantile), and this season’s Top Chef runner-up Brooke Williamson (The Tripel) will join other fan-favorites to butcher a whole hog and craft fare to pair with small-batch beers and punches by Wilshire mixologist Devon Espinosa. $55 tickets on ce.strength.org; $65 at the door. 2454 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica, 310-586-1707
Vintage Cocktails at Veranda
The Georgian Hotel celebrates its 80th anniversary with retro specials.
April 25, 2013
Enjoy a prohibition-era cocktail or a relaxing breakfast on Veranda’s ocean-view balcony.
The Georgian Hotel, a Santa Monica architectural staple and Hollywood favorite, is toasting its 80th anniversary with a series of coming-soon specials paying homage to the hotel’s art deco roots. Head to the in-house restaurant and lounge Veranda in May, where resident mixologists are shaking up sips off a brand-new prohibition-themed cocktail menu. Selections range from a classic French 75, Daquiri, or Negroni, to the Brown Derby—an old Hollywood mainstay made with Maker’s Mark bourbon, grapefruit juice, honey, and a lemon peel garnish. Pick up the Paloma for a refreshing spring sip of Patron silver, club soda, and grapefruit and lime juices, or order the more traditional Manhattan or Rob Roy if you’re a fan of darker spirits.
The revamped libations list coincides with a limited-time Retro Deco Room Package ($999 now through December 31) that includes a two-night stay in the historic ocean-view Carol Lombard or Clark Gable suites, special in-room '30s-era entertainment, breakfast for two at Veranda, a welcome cocktail, and complimentary valet. Additional celebrations planned to roll out in the next few months include a Sunday sunset tea and a specialty food menu at Veranda, featuring favorite dishes from the 1930s. For dinner or hotel reservations, call 310-395-9945. 1415 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica
LA Modernism Show & Sale Returns
The area’s premiere exhibition of fine and decorative arts runs this weekend.
April 24, 2013
Now in its 26th year, the annual Los Angeles Modernism Show & Sale comes back to Santa Monica Barker Hangar April 25-28, bringing together over 50 representatives from the art and design worlds in one expansive showcase. Exhibitors from around the globe will join local purveyors like Century Guild, Domont Jewelry, and Harvey’s on Beverly. Show-goers can expect 20th-century furnishings, sculpture, paintings, glass, jewelry, textiles, photography, and more, making this event ideal for anyone redecorating a home.
The exhibition debuts with a gala on April 25 (6-10 pm) benefiting P.S. Arts, an organization that provides arts access to students in the Los Angeles area. Celebrity hosts—including Maria and Bill Bell, Rachel Bilson, Kimberly and Albert Brooks, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, and Elizabeth Stewart—and other patrons will enjoy a cocktail reception and private preview of the exhibition. Tickets to the event begin at $175 and are available at psarts.org, or at the door.
LA Modernism’s public opening is April 26 at 11 am and includes special programming like a panel discussion at 4 pm on the changing face of California modernism, and 5 pm book signings by James Magni and John Finton (Booth 402). Tickets to the public portion of the show are $15 and are available at the door. 3021 Airport Ave., Santa Monica
Q&A With: Comedienne Jen Kirkman
The LA jokester talks about her new book and why she's not having kids.
April 24, 2013
|Funny-girl Jen Kirkman just released her book I Can Barely Take Care of Myself: Tales from a Happy Life Without Kids April 16.|
If you aren’t familiar with Jen Kirkman from her stints on Chelsea Lately, Conan, and the viral Drunk History series, you may have caught her around Los Angeles doing stand-up at Hollywood Improv, The Laugh Factory, Largo, and The Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre. Kirkman has quickly established herself as a face to watch in the comedic world with her self-deprecating brand of humor, much of which centers on not wanting children.
The comedienne channeled her lack of maternal instincts into a new book—I Can Barely Take Care of Myself: Tales from a Happy Life Without Kids—a hilarious stand against conforming to traditional gender roles ($22 on amazon.com). We caught up with Kirkman for a chat about her latest venture, the LA comedy scene, and more on her thoughts on not having children.
What inspired you to write this book?
JEN KIRKMAN: I have always wanted to write a book and made many false starts on books that never went anywhere. I realized that I could take a page—pardon the almost-pun—out of my stand-up act. I do a lot of jokes about what a terrible parent I would be. When people ask me if I want children and I say, ‘no,’ they respond, ‘you'll change your mind,’ or ‘that's selfish.’ And when it started to happen more often, I realized I might have to write a book because I know there must be other women who don’t want kids and want to feel less alone, without having to make another person.
What's your number one retort to people who say you'll change your mind about having kids?
JK: I usually just mumble, ‘yeah maybe,’ and then go home and hate myself for not saying, ‘why don't you change your mind about being so nosey and rude!’ I guess my best retort now will be to hand them my book.
How do you feel about marriage?
JK: I feel like I wish mine would legally end already. My divorce has been waiting on someone's overly full desk in some courthouse in LA to be finalized. Other than that, marriage is nice—for people who want to be married.
What is your favorite spot to go out in LA?
JK: I don't really ‘go out’—I hate clubs and crowds and loudness. I like the bar at the Sunset Marquis (1200 Alta Loma Rd., West Hollywood, 310-657-1333) and the pool there by day.
What about your top places to do stand-up in the area?
JK: Largo at the Coronet (366 N La Cienega Blvd., West Hollywood, 310-855-0350) and Hollywood Improv (8162 Melrose Ave., Hollywood, 323-651-2583).
Mélisse’s New Spring Menus
Luxe French resto reveals two tasting menus inspired by the Santa Monica Farmers' Market.
April 23, 2013
Sample vegetable- or asparagus-focused menus in Mélisse’s luxurious dining room.
Mélisse chef Josiah Citrin unveiled two new tasting menus on April 22 that showcase the best fresh produce from the Santa Monica Farmers’ Market. The new spring menus include a four-course asparagus tasting ($195) and a five-course vegetarian tasting ($125), each with optional wine pairings by in-house sommelier Brian Kalliel.
The asparagus option starts with a poached green asparagus, served alongside decadent American Osetra caviar and a slow-cooked egg. Maine lobster accompanied by white asparagus, lobster glazed potatoes, and black truffles comprises the second course; while the third-course roasted Jidori chicken topped with a yellow wine jus rounds things out with white asparagus and morel mushrooms. A unique spin on dessert concludes the meal: sweet asparagus.
Alternatively, the vegetarian menu may start off with an asparagus-based dish of green asparagus, almond panna cotta, blood orange, and oxalis, but other vegetables share the spotlight. Dig into a second course of Uruguayan brown rice with sweet peas, daikon, and mint emulsion; followed by a broccoli dish made up of egg yolk, wild mushrooms, and vadouvan spice. After a fine cheese course, guests will enjoy a fruit dessert that features cherimoya, tangerines, and tapioca.
Both menus are available Tuesdays through Saturdays within Mélisse’s French-inspired fine dining room, complete with sleek white tablecloths and an attentive staff. Either spring menu is available by request. 1104 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica, 310-395-0881
MOCA’s YESSSSS! Gala Raises 2.5 Million
Art patrons gathered for an event celebrating the debut of Urs Fischer's exhibit.
April 22, 2013
The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) hosted their annual gala event on April 20, celebrating the debut of a large-scale exhibition by Swiss artist Urs Fischer. Dubbed YESSSSS!, the event was hosted by Larry Gagosian, and brought together an array of museum supporters including respected contemporary artists like Julian Schnabel and Shepard Fairey, Hollywood personalities like Brian Grazer, Jennifer Tilly, and Owen Wilson, and art patrons like Steve Tisch and Peter Brant.
Directed by artist Rob Pruitt—who explored mismatched themes in an appropriate homage to the modern art world—the experience kicked off at MOCA Grand Avenue. There, guests were invited to preview the “Urs Fischer” exhibit while enjoying cocktails by Russian Standard Vodka and a performance by LA-based band No Age. Attendees then boarded shuttles to The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA, where they were greeted with Hawaiian leis. The chance to further explore Fischer’s intriguing sculpture installation, which features over 1,000 clay pieces made with the help of countless Los Angeles locals, was also on the agenda.
Pruitt’s quirky touches were visible throughout the evening—from the suspended male angels floating above the dinner guests, to a goat petting zoo, costumed Renaissance Fair characters, and a dollar bill cannon. To eat, event-goers enjoyed Parisian-style fare by Wolfgang Puck Catering. The meal was followed by a surprise performance from the USC marching band, and shows by The Go-Go’s and Mark Mothersbaugh, among others. Overall the evening raised over 2.5 million dollars for the museum. The Fischer exhibit is on view through August 19.
5 Must-Sees at Paris Photo LA
Our picks for can’t-miss exhibits at this exciting inaugural art event.
April 22, 2013
Paris Photo LA comes to Paramount Studios this weekend (April 26-28), marking an exchange of photography and creative ideas between Los Angeles and Paris. Derived from the prestigious photography fair Paris Photo, Los Angeles’ iteration of the event provides the same exclusive access to covetable contemporary and modern works, with an added focus on the LA arts scene. See our five musts below. Tickets are available on parisphoto.com. 5555 Melrose Ave., Hollywood
Photography by Sandra Mu/Getty Images (Car); Antonia Christina Basilotta (Breakaway); Jim Goldberg/Magnum Photos (Haiti)
Intermix's 20th Anniversary Line
The popular boutique toasts to 20 years with a multi-brand capsule collection.
April 22, 2013
Intermix, the premier boutique for chic luxury clothing and accessories, marks their 20th anniversary with a 20-piece capsule collection designed by boldfaced partners like Missoni, Ohne Titel, Robert Rodriguez, Alexis Bittar, and more. The collection is currently available for presale, and will officially be available for purchase in all of Intermix’s LA stores and online April 26.
With pieces ideal for spring and summer, each individual item in the collection works on its own but can also be mixed and matched. Pair the bright red v-neck Yigal Azrouel dress ($798) or the 50’s-style red Herve Leger dress ($1,690) with head-turning low-heeled red pumps by Sergio Rossi ($575). Or, opt for a white snakeskin dress by Mason ($588) with just a touch of black at the neckline, which will really pop with the exclusive fuchsia Proenza Schouler leather cross-body purse ($1,325) or a green and white tie-dyed Bajra scarf ($298). Meanwhile, outerwear perfect for chillier summer evenings includes Iro’s motorcycle-style leather jacket ($1,228) and the slightly edgier Rag & Bone silver and white blazer ($538). See all LA-area stores on intermixonline.com