Tasting

Al Bacio – Un Grande Gesto

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Los Angeles is known for its rigorous array of restaurants and the brutal standards to which they are held so when a new restaurant opens, the challenge is immediately before them. Sometimes though, something new comes along and in spite of a few little adjustments, you realize maybe there’s a new kid in town that’s worth giving a closer look. Located in the spot where, once upon a time, celebrities flocked to like a Wonderland, Al Bacio is nestled at the prime corner in West Hollywood on Sunset Boulevard. Al Bacio is the un grande gesto (grand gesture) that will lend color and prestige.

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Five0Four HOLLYWOOD

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The evening begins with a plethora of tastings. A throw back to the streets of New Orleans, the ostentatious melody of flavor and combination, and a wetting of ones appetite. It must be told that Five0Four is a restaurant and bar that has that open-air appeal with a subtle familiarity you’ve been there before. A testament to the environment they create and while it’s located right off of the infamous Hollywood Boulevard, you can sit outside, feast your eyes on the passersby, the tourists, the entertaining factor of life in real time.

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The Bruery Brew Dinner at The Crow Bar – Prying Flavors with Pairings

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Our plates are cleared, and the second beer arrives, Or Xata, a horchata ale—something we’ve never had or heard of—and anticipation swells in our tongues; both of us spending many nights running to 24-hour Mexican restaurants to satisfy our cravings for the milky, cinnamon drink after 2am. Upon smelling the beer, it evokes images of a creamsicle on a hot summer day, and as it touches your lips, the cinnamon and creamy body takes over, weaving to a vanilla conclusion. We discuss how you often read about eccentric billionaires who have enough money to fly out their favorite chili cheese burger from a Ma and Pa restaurant in the Midwest. This beer would be our eccentric billionaire fly-out.

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Nothing Standard About Micah

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We pause at the bar to order a glass of wine and ask to let Micah know we’re here. A Pinot Noir – easy. Out walks Micah (because he’s not a fan of being called “chef” which makes him even cooler in my book), he smiles that boyish smile, we hug because it’s been a long journey to finally get to the tasting, and we look at the space to figure out if we’re sitting inside or out. Greeted with a tranquility and easy-going appeal, a smile that lets you know he’s genuinely happy to have you sit down at his table, and the passion and curiosities he embodies in the fare he prepares – I knew this wouldn’t be a boring excursion – nor would it be predictable. I was NOT disappointed. We decide the ambiance inside is more our speed tonight. When we sit down in the beautiful, modern, opaque space at the Restaurant, one can’t help but have the desire to want to touch things…

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Absinthe Incognito with Chef Lawrence Kocurek

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The evening had arrived, the torrential downpour now washed over me after an incredible event: Rock Your Taco. I walked out onto the Austin scene, feet now bare and soaked, my dress so beautiful now basking in fresh rain water, and my hair once perfectly tailored now soaked and dangling like more of a wet mop than a tress of manicured vintage. I put my wet shoes in the grip of my fingers and see this pedi-taxi. The driver, hair in a ponytail, shorts, and a smile that I can’t ignore. He says, “I’ll take you wherever you want to go. Come on.” I smile. I tell him where and then tell him I only have $5 cash. He says, “Look at you! You were dancing in the rain! I’ll take you anywhere!” The moon glistens through the fluent beads of rainy strings pouring down from the sky.

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Oliverio at Avalon Hotel

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The Hotel is easy to pass which makes it all the more intriguing when you pull up the curved driveway, hand your keys to the valet and walk into a naturally lit entry with the flooding calm of whites and turquoises in hues of glass, smooth surfaces, and rich woods. You feel more fluid and awakened as the pieces of furniture adorning the room speak of modern simplicity by way of the subtle curves on the arm chair or the movement of the varying pieces of art strategically placed about the space.

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Tastings with Chef Shawn Cirkiel PART 1

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Wearing his special order bright pink VANS with black eyelets, a soft pink button up, jeans, and a smile that seems to extend to you, Chef Cirkiel is your every day guy with impeccable taste, a hands-on approach to his craft, an eagerness to experiment, a calling to push himself further, a willingness to encourage his staff to be proactive and innovative, and a charm that allows you feel as if you’ve known him for years. Jane readies her camera and we dive right into conversation…

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Austin Food & Wine Presents Rock Your Taco

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The day ends and a different kind of Food Event is about to begin. A culinary world, an incredible global community created to support chefs and their passions and push them to be their best – at all times; Something I wholeheartedly subscribe to. While we are flourishing with the Celebrity Chef nuance, I love to see these chefs dig deep and go back to doing what they love most: COOK.

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