Friday, October 03, 2008
Before rainy days and full swing of the season's "must see TV", here's a rundown of fun October events in and around the LA/OC area to keep your first days of Fall busy.
As mentioned before, the 2nd Annual Luxury Chocolate Salon taking place on Oct. 5 - featuring demonstrations, lectures, and, of course, lots of chocolate tastings along a few other sweets (toffees, marshmallows) and some wines too (here's my write-up last year). A sweet deal for $17.50 in advance or $20 at the door. Many of the vendors will also be selling their offerings at the salon, so bring some cash too in case you discover worthwhile nibbles.
Thanks to Caroline on Crack, found out Phillipe's is celebrating their 100th Anniversary on Oct. 6 with a price roll-back with nickel coffees and sandwiches for a dime (limit one per customer). Definitely a much appreciated bargain in these shaky times. Their doors open at 4pm on Monday, so plan appropriately.
Thanks to I Nom Things for heads-up about OC Weekly's Best Of Party on Oct. 9 at iLounge in Irvine. Hors d'oeuvres and alchy will be provided along with live performances. FYI, there's a "strictly enforced" dress code of upscale-chic for this event. Why can't LA Weekly do the same to launch its Best of Issue this week?
To the North, the Santa Barbara County Vintners Association will be hosting its annual Celebration of Harvest Festival on Oct. 11 at Santa Maria Valley's Rancho Sisquoc Winery. Lots of tastings from regional wineries (over a hundred members in that association -- you can count on most, if not all, of them to be participating!), along with samplings of local restaurant dishes and live entertainment. $65/person or $25 for designated drivers.
And to the South, also noted before, San Diego's El Bizcocho will be the site of the "Beer vs. Wine" rematch on Oct. 17. Six amazing-sounding courses (including smoked raw ahi tuna with ponzu gelee and green apple nitro "cous cous"; 36-hour pork with kimchee consomme, golden raisins and maple dust; abalone and foie gras with persimmons and sweet onion puree and a modern take on Cherries Jubilee with carbonated cherries and honey marscarpone) are each paired with selected beer from Stone Brewing Co. and wines from Trinchero Wine Estates. Taste both and vote! $125/person.
For sake lovers who'd like to learn more about this alchy from Japan, LearnAboutWine is hosting a Sake Sunday School on Oct. 19 with guest sake sommelier Yuji Matsumoto (who, coincidentally, runs a blog called Learn About Sake) teaching you all the basics of sake tasting and pairing. Eight premium sakes will be served along with Japanese appetizers for pairing and to help wash it down. $69/person advanced or $75 at-the-door.
Continuing on the autumn gaming and gathering theme, Ford's Filling Station will be doing a $55/person Harvest Dinner on Oct. 21 showcasing lots of autumn comfort eats taking to a new and intriguing level such as bacon wrapped quail with pickled jalapenos and white corn polenta with mascarpone and lemon thyme. Of course, being Ford's, meats play a heavy hand in this meal -- and there's roast goose, porchetta, Kentucky ham and turkey roulade to choose from! (Thanks to Social Domain LA for the menu scoop on this one)
The 9th Annual Japanese Food Festival will be taking place in the Kyoto Grand Hotel & Gardens (formerly the New Otani) on Oct. 25. Thrown by the Japanese Restaurant Association of Southern California, it's basically a smorgasbord of Japanese food from beef bowls to yakitori along with fun events such as watching a whole tuna being fileted (and hopefully served) to a sushi chef contest and the creation of a 40-foot-long mega sushi roll. Sake, beer, shochu and wine will also be sampled. $50/person.
On Oct. 26, Los Angeles Magazine will be hosting its third annual The Food Event: From the Vine in Malibu at the Saddlerock Ranch Vineyard, with cooking demos and tastings from top-name chefs and restaurants (including Two Food Dudes' and Animal's Vinny and Jon, Neal Fraser from Grace, CJ from Top Chef, Makuto Okuwa from Sashi Sushi and the Mozzas' Nancy Silverton) along with wine tastings from over a dozen wineries! $60 advanced or $75 at-the-door, it also comes with a year's subscription to LA Magazine and $20 of each ticket will be split for LA Regional Foodbank and the Concern Foundation.
And finally, all month long, many participating Togo's will be rolling back "1970s Flashback Wednesdays" with 6" classic sandwiches offered at $1.99. And with every almost $2 sandwich purchased, a donation wll be made to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.