Bar

Fig & Olive The Music Collection Release Event

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nvited to attend the Fig & Olive Music Collection Release Event on Wednesday, December 4th I was beyond elated to be heading to the pristine Melrose Place restaurant where Chef Pascal Lorange creates truly delightful Mediterranean inspired cuisine. The space has been home to Grammy Events, Oscar Events, celebrity parties and the like but it’s not because it is pretentious. In fact it boasts a truly wonderful airy feel, spacious rooms, earthy envelopment’s, crisp clean dècor with rich hues of color to warm you.

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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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Double Header of Talent: Shaun B and Orlando Napier at Harvelle’s

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He is a thin, handsome man in a striped shirt and jeans, sipping on Stella Artois and bobbing to the music–and I realize it’s the second headliner of the night, Orlando Napier–and since we are standing inches from the speakers, I flip into a blank page of my notebook and write “Break a leg up there” and hold it up to him. He smiles and shakes my hand twice before hopping on stage, embracing a glistening-with-sweat Shaun B. who concludes his set with supercharged covers of Stevie Wonder and The Turtles’ “Happy Together.”

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I Think It’s Raining

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It is with this in mind that I was struck by how at odds I felt about the actors’ ability in conjunction to the film’s style and narrative. Undoubtedly a by-product of the director’s decided dismissal of maintaining strict coherence of his script, throughout the narrative Renata and Val carry on Linklater-esque conversations in an awkward, pause-filled manner that initially induces a sort of ticking time-bomb dread.

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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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FASHION: A Night of Old Hollywood Cool

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It was sticky night as the moisture of the heat and the primal desires began to surface. It was Thursday night and the muck of the air rested on my dampened flesh this June evening. Tonight is the big event and it’s the night I get to slip into a dress made by Laura Byrnes and the Designers of PinUp Girl Clothing. Black material cut for bodies like mine, a velvet upper bodice draping my shoulders, binding my neck, and accentuating my bountiful decolletage with amplified elegance. A caterpillar green cymbidium orchid lined with sexuality nestled in my ginger hair. Everything is about how you feel in your own skin and tonight, in this dress, I planned on being ready … for any urge that beckoned.

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No Room For the Ordinary

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As the band fades out, the man in the bowler derby starts to climb a ladder to where the tightrope begins. He stops to sweep out his arm over the audience, clutching a bouquet of flowers, and begins his trek across the tightrope above faces draped in cherry lipstick and blue eye shadow, everyone frantically trying to capture the moment with their camera phones, and me scribbling details in an orange notebook. The crowd and I reward the tightrope walker with a much deserved crackle of applause and it is after this moment that the co-owner of the bar, Mark Houston, arrives, blazing through the crowd in a grey suit and whirlwind of smiles, hugs, and handshakes from the many friends who have come to support him. And although I have never met him before, Mark sets aside time to speak with me, giving me a tour of the location and tells me of his vision for No Vacancy, explaining how he wants the bar to rise above the cheesiness of Hollywood Boulevard as well as restore a treasured landmark and era of Los Angeles history.

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Stone and Sadie

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Sarah’s voice drips out into the microphone like honey, sweetening the deliciously dark lyrics of “Kiss the Cuts (Disco No. 6 for Charles Bukowski) as Jazzmin, Andrew and Anders moved in sequence with the pulse. Once the clapping quiets, Sarah announces that “Kiss the Cuts” and the tongue-in-cheek song “I’m Nobody’s Baby (& You Ain’t Nobody’s Fool)” are available to purchase on their official “double”, of which I highly recommend. That way, their finger snapping and toe tapping tunes can follow you home in entirety, instead of just a catchy chorus looping in your head.

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Taco Asylum

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Once in a while you come across a restaurant that takes food to an all new level. They take the ordinary and make it extraordinary, take a basic concept and get entirely creative. Allow me to introduce you to Taco Asylum. The name beckons a sense of total abandon, opening your mind, and asking your taste buds to take a trip on the wild side. This post is entirely different than the rest and in all honesty, it deserves it’s own originality. Before I even delve into walking you through a restaurant that lures you in with a notion of tasty insanity, take a look at the photographs below…

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Nick’s Laguna Beach

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…The sauce with a hint of Saffron (I think), the perfect texture and moist divinity of the short ribs, the eggs cooked and prepared with care – honestly, this is my new favorite breakfast. The meat falls off of the fork; the taste – explosive. Now the true test, my modified omelet with Serrano chiles. I press the tips of my fork in and and layer by layer, beautiful color is revealed: the egg whites, the deep green of the spinach, the beckoning green of the chile, the melted cream of the chèvre cheese. Yes, I have found an omelet worth eating every last bite of. The generous cut of applewood smoked bacon cooked to perfection and the bowl of berries and apple is a happy culinary marriage.

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