Monday, May 23, 2016
Hold your horses; rather, you don't even need to get on horses out in wine country somewhere to experience excellent wine education. It's available right in your backyard down in Newport Beach. Moulin Bistro is hosting monthly, interactive wine education courses showcasing 6-8 boutique French wines of limited production. For only $29 per person, guests can learn about the featured region in France to better understand the identifiers for the area and the unique flavors that accompany each varietal as well as taste the wines to better understand the terroir profiles. We were invited to join for the Rhône Valley session in April and definitely came away with some notable notes to remember.
Tuesday, May 17, 2016
77 N 6th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11211 (Neighborhood: Williamsburg)
Pricing - $$ | Dining - Casual | Cuisine - Japanese, Brunch
One of the reasons why I enjoy going to New York is that my older brother lives in Brooklyn so 1) I have a place to stay and also 2) I get to see him! However, because we are both busy busy, it isn't too often that we get to do much together when I'm in town. This trip around, we got to check out a brunch spot that he likes visiting called House of Small Wonder which is a bit of Japanese fusion. Think of a menu that offers the likes of Okinawan Taco Rice, Fig Brie Apple Sandwich, and Croque Madame all at one mealtime. The outdoor area is unassuming with its big wooden slats that hides the restaurant away from the street view aside from its chalkboard menu signs. The inside is certainly in the style of a tiny wondrous house.
Sunday, May 15, 2016
"To be the premier farm to table dining experience in southern California...""Farm-to-table," "local," "sustainable" - so many buzzwords have been floating around these past few years to attract people to restaurants but how many places can stand behind these marketing terms so proudly as Oceans & Earth in Yorba Linda who grows their own produce? That's right. The restaurant with the weekly changing menu helmed by Chef/Owner Adam Navidi of Future Foods Farm (more on this in a later post!) boasts not only an organic, from-scratch, and completely gluten-free menu but also the fact that they source a majority of their ingredients from themselves. I joined a few other people on a tour of Chef Navidi's impressive, expansive 65-acre farm in Brea before sitting down to enjoy a wine-paired multicourse dinner curated by General Manager/Owner Barbara (Barbie) Wheatley. In addition to their dedicated farming practice being impressive, the food was simply brilliant and ostensibly inspired.
Sunday, May 8, 2016
15 East 15th Street, New York, NY 10003 (Neighborhood: Union Square)
Pricing - $$$ | Dining - Dressy Casual | Cuisine - Japanese
One of my missions during my most recent trip to New York was to get Michelin-starred restaurants under my belt but also not overspend. I spotted 15 East on a list of places to try for lunch at a somewhat affordable but quality rate, and when have I turned down the opportunity to have sushi? I made reservations for my friend and me and visited with the intent of just doing a small lunch. Instead, we were tempted in by other options which were definitely had without regret. It is a demure place instead with a subtle beauty to it all, and the quiet, calm environment makes you almost want to whisper to your fellow diner(s) while appreciating the craft of your meal.
Wednesday, May 4, 2016
179 East Houston Street New York, NY 10002 (Neighborhood: Lower East Side)
Pricing - $$ | Dining - To-Go | Cuisine - Specialty
If you go to New York, you have to get a bagel. You also have to get yourself some smoked salmon and even though Russ & Daughters may not have the best bagels in town, you can get cross the two requirements off your list by going there for a mindblowing smoked salmon bagel sandwich. Just bear in mind that it may be a little up there in price but well worth it. When my friend and I traveled to New York recently, this was the first bite in the city that we knew we had to get and no regrets were had. Love smoked salmon? Take your pick at Russ & Daughters.
Sunday, May 1, 2016
(Special discount code below) Wine wine wine. You can't whine when you've got wine so May 21st ought to be on your calendar this year as the day you get to imbibe and enjoy. In just a little under three weeks, you could be sipping on some delicious wines at the OC Great Park at the 2016 Great Wine Festival hosted by Legal Aid Society of Orange County (LASOC), a non-profit dedicated to providing civil legal services to veterans, the homeless, low-income families, and the elderly. Spend the afternoon with many other wine enthusiasts for a great cause and partake in all-inclusive tastings from 30+ wineries, breweries, spirits providers, and restaurants. We've even got a special code for our readers to use to get discounted tickets so read on!
Thursday, April 28, 2016
"I try to hit every sense in each bite."If there is one thing we can count on Chef Cody Storts to do, it's to make good food. He possesses a particular acumen for the right mixture of ingredients onto a plate, no matter the style, and everything is presented in a bold, satisfying way. You've certainly seen the likes of the chef in several restaurants in Orange County over the years but Grits is his first full-fledged restaurant that was introduced to the Fullerton community initially as a brunch destination. However, that fare has changed a little bit and recently, the hot spot has thrown dinner on the menu. We were invited in to give this a gander, and we left with our bellies quite a bit fuller and our faces grinning wide.