Posts for July 10, 2012

Freddy Smalls Sports New Summer Cocktails

Everyone who's ever laid down their thoughts on West L.A.'s Freddy Smalls agrees that it's a damn fine place to get a proper buzz on. The moody space is perfect for a dram, the nineties hip-hop just our speed, and David Fleisher's drinks are engaging but never fussy. Toasting to summer, Fleischer has a new menu of cocktails designed to inject some refreshment into the muggy months, including drinks like an Old Fashioned made with pickled peaces and Buffalo Trace bourbon, a Swedish Island with coconut water, orange blossom syrup, lime, and Kanon Organic vodka, and a changing roster of daily cocktails like a Pimm's Cup shrub employing pickled mulberries, gin, cucumber, and lemon. Check out Smalls' full new cocktail selection and some sample of the daily drinks below.

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Trattoria Neapolis Soft-Opens Tonight in Pasadena

Trattoria NeapolisPhoto: Frank Noack

Trattoria Neapolis soft-opens in Pasadena tonight with a tight team that includes the Pascal Olhats and Bruce Logue-trained Bryant Wigger in the kitchen, Beer Chick Christina Perozzi curating the brew list and partner Hallie Beaune acting as beer sommelier, cocktails designed by Copa de Oro's Vincenzo Marianella, a wine program curated by fourth-level sommelier Diego Meraviglia, and former Sona general manager, Dominic Ta, in place as its day-to-day wine pro.

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Hand Made Events Plan Prodigious Picnic Pop-Up in L.A.

Putting the white in a white partyPhoto: Hand Made Events

A company named Hand Made Events is bringing its "PopUp Dinner" series to L.A. on August 25 in the guise of a massive picnic. Folding a flash mob into a social gathering and mixing in food, Hand Made has organized similar soirees in San Diego and San Francisco in which great numbers of people (including freaky chicks and fellas, Telly Savalas lookalikes, and aack—old-people!) are brought together to eat under the night sky.

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Watch Cookie Monster’s Carly Rae Jepson Spoof ‘Share It Maybe’

Sharing trumps calorie counting.

Even though cookies are only supposed to be "a sometimes food" for Cookie Monster in these health-conscious times, the lovable blue guy is back to his old tricks and fiending for cookies today with a new web video. It's a spoof of Carly Rae Jepson's megahit "Call Me Maybe" called "Share It Maybe," and features Cookie Monster roaming around an office trying to steal everyone's cookies. Also, there are backup dancers. And really, were we ever supposed to believe that he would choose fruit over a cookie? As if. Check out the video right here. [Vulture]

Finding The City's Best Pho

L.A. Weekly ace Tien Nguyen tackles a subject near and dear to local hearts and minds today in a rundown of L.A.'s best pho restaurants. Giving Pho Filet's decadent filet mignon pho the top spot, the writer susses out great Northern-style pho bac at Pho Huynh and the wagyu-bowls at Noodle Guy, while shouting out mainstays like Golden Deli and Pho 79, and declaring new Nong LA to have the best pho on the long pho-saken Westside. [LAW]

On Frank Ocean, Channel Orange, and Taste Synesthesia

We bet Channel Orange tastes like sherbet.Photo: Karl Walter/Getty Images

Last night, Frank Ocean released Channel Orange, his proper debut, a week before it was supposed to hit. (It's great — go listen.) The title, as every single thing written about Ocean in the last week has told us, has to do with synesthesia, the neurological phenomenon through which two senses get their wires crossed (in the case of Ocean, orange was reportedly the color he saw when he first fell in love). But we wondered, on this very slow summer day, if that particular condition could extend itself to flavor, and food. And it turns out it can, in lots of awesome-sounding ways.

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What's Poppin' at Galco's 2nd Annual Soda Tasting

Galco's, Highland Park's epic soda store-slash-museum for vintage fizzy stuff, is holding its second annual summertime soda tasting event on July 22 to benefit Friends of the Southwest Museum. $12 buys entry to a popping party featuring face-time with Galco's owner John Neese, a band called Don & Bunk that counts original members of Frank Zappa's Mothers of Invention, and samples of more than seven rare and interesting sodas like Old Dominion root beer, Sweet Blossom floral sodas, and the newest flavor in Galco's own line of White Rose sodas.

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Cat Cora Caught Driving Under the Influence

Cora.

Oops! The Santa Barbara Independent found out that Cat Cora, Food TV staple and host of the show-that-nobody-really-watches Around the World in 80 Plates, was cited last month for driving under the influence after her Chevy Tahoe rear-ended a BMW at low speed. Cops arrived and conducted a field sobriety test and discovered that, yes, Cora's BAC was more than twice the legal limit. Cora reportedly told officers that she'd had three beers that night, after she and her partner got into an argument. In hindsight, maybe all those ouzo shots she threw back on Iron Chef America were really just a cry for help. [Santa Barbara Independent via Eater National]

What to Eat at The Kitchen Table, Now Open in Downtown

Chefs Fernando Darin and Greg BernhardtPhoto: Tatiana Arbogast

Speaking of Church & State, the French bistro's original chef, Greg Bernhardt, is now the consulting chef helping to kick-start The Kitchen Table, the long gestating Downtown restaurant that shares the block with Pete's and Baco Mercat. Kitchen Table, from owner Ray Jaghori, who runs the market across the street, cracked its doors open last Monday in a charming two-story building with an even more enchanting al fresco patio that serves as the second floor's rooftop dining room. So, what's to eat here?

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Jonathan Waxman Hasn't Forgotten His L.A. Plans

In an interview with Eater, Jonathan Waxman revisits his plans to return to L.A., telling the blog, "I am a California boy at heart," before praising our product, defending Alice Waters against all haters, and looking back to his days at Michael's. Waxman is yet to pick a location for an L.A. restaurant but seems to have more carnal thoughts on his mind anyway, calling our farmers markets "a wet dream" and comparing restaurant-building to making love.

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Church & State's Yassmin Sarmadi Plans "Spring" Next Summer

Sarmadi

Yassmin Sarmadi, who purchased Downtown's successful French bistro Church & State in 2010, is planning to open a new French restaurant named Spring in the ground floor of the neighborhood's historic Douglas Building at Spring and Third Streets. Brigham Yen reports that the new project will be completed in two stages, taking over 7,000 square-feet of the closed Origami Bistro and Bar space in the first round of construction, and in the second, occupying the former Lot 44 space for a grand total of roughly 15,000 square-feet of new restaurant space. Spring will serve contemporary, seasonal French menus that veer more towards "Southern and Mediterranean French" cooking in a more modern approach than Church & State's bistro cuisine.

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Duplex Opens Tonight on Third Street

DuplexPhoto: Duplex

Following a soft-debut, Duplex officially opens this evening among two stories of an early 20th century abode on Third Street, just east of Robertson. The last (and only) time we heard anything about the restaurant, the owner was going buck-wild with Eater, hollering and smashing the website's camera (he's probably just a big Besha Rodell fan). Anyway, smooth move! Duplex, according to the restaurant, strives for a mixed bag of approachable, produce-centered California cooking under chef Lauren Cartmel, formerly a pastry chef for Gordon Ramsay Holdings and the senior sous at Polo Lounge, in a residential space that's been skewed by Thomas Schoos.

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Here’s How You Make a Big Mac (Kind Of)

McDonald's rolled out a promotional video that features the company's executive chef Dan Coudreaut making a Big Mac at home, and you know it's casual because he makes a point of removing his chef's jacket. You can watch it below, if you're interested, but the interesting thing about the video is that it's less instructional — only an idiot needs to be told how to layer burger fixings on a bun — and way more about making McDonald's signature agro-burger look like a wholesome, unprocessed product.

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