The Spanish Northeast: From Rioja to Empordà.

If you are planning on travel to Europe, here is an interesting proposal. A couple of months ago we visited two of the most beautiful and unlikely hotels and wineries in Spain. Somehow, Spain seems to fly under the radar compared to its next-door neighbor, France. However, Spain is the third largest wine producer in the world and the largest in Europe. According to the Organisation Internationale de la Vigne et du Vine in its 2017 report, the country has dedicated a total of 2.4 billion acres to vineyards.

March 2018 Around Town

 Kudos to Our Local Library!  The Newport Beach Public Library was recently named a Star Library in a national ranking complied by Library Journal in its 10th edition of the Library Journal of Public Library Service.  Of the 259 named Star Libraries in the country, 13 are in California, with just four in Southern California. NBPL is the highest scoring library in Orange County and has been recognized as such five years running.  The New Golden Age of Latin Music

‘Let’s Celebrate!’

‘Let’s Celebrate!’ 9

Providence Speech and Hearing Center’s (PSHC) 52nd Annual Gala drew 315 guests to the City National Grove of Anaheim for an evening of fine food, incredible entertainment (thanks to JT & Friends) and raising money to enrich the lives of those with speech and hearing problems through its amazing programs.

Food Issue is Here!

This issue is always a favorite of mine. Good food and libations rule the day! I rise every day and think about what wonderful foods I will be experiencing that day. It doesn’t have to be gourmet–it could be a Hostess cupcake!–but looking forward to something that I really like makes my day!

Newport Beach Restaurant Week Kick-Off

The 12th Annual Newport Beach Restaurant Week (actually two weeks this year), themed “Beyond the Menu: A Culinary Journey,” launched at a dine-around experience at Fashion Island’s Lincoln Experience Center with 100 guests. The event is presented by Dine Newport Beach and the Newport Beach Restaurant Association. Photography Robert Rooks

‘Christmas Carol Ball’ Celebrates 51 Years!

The Hoag Hospital Foundation’s “Christmas Carol Ball” observed 51 years for the popular holiday gala, held at the Monarch Beach Resort. The 600 festively-attired guests enjoyed a gourmet repast, tempting auction items, a lively Rat Pack show and dancing to the NRG band, while raising impressive funds to support Hoag.

Joining the Next Cooking Craze

Other than a bread maker machine, I think I pretty much own every kitchen gadget and cooking tool imaginable. Slow cooker. Check. Food processor, immersion blender, pasta machine, drying racks for the pasta, yes! It’s all here, and my kitchen is busting at the seams. My husband had to build a wall of cabinets out in the garage to store all my endless array of fancy-pants gizmos.

Dining Differently in Wailea, Hawaii

Wailea, or the Beverly Hills of Maui, as it is affectionately called, is no stranger to amazing food and drinks, as it is home to the top luxury resorts on the island. Never a step behind, the resorts are constantly creating innovative ways for their guests to dine. From rotating weekly programs to exclusive private dinners to a full renovation of one of the island’s most coveted restaurants, Wailea will satisfy your cravings.

Matching Wine with Food

 When it comes to food and wine pairing, there are those who match any dish with any wine and those who try to balance the flavors of cuisine with the perfect wine. No matter where you land on the spectrum, here is a full-proof menu I recently prepared for my friends. Food and wine pairing should be lots of fun and spark some interesting conversations. I like to share my idea of food and wine matching with the most common grape varietals.

MAKING WAVES: Hilbert Museum Pays Tribute to Surf-Art Legends John Severson and Rick Griffin

MAKING WAVES: Hilbert Museum Pays Tribute to Surf-Art Legends John Severson and Rick Griffin 6

Almost as soon as the ancient Polynesian sport of surfing invaded California’s shores in the 20th century, an entire socioeconomic subculture began to spring up around it. The beaches of Southern California became the center of a “surf culture” that hit its high point from the late 1950s through the ‘60s and is still active today. From developing its own music, fashion and jargon to creating its own films, publications and art, surf culture became a signature aspect of American popular culture and a world-recognized element of the California lifestyle.

An Alternative Choice: Chef Chris Polley

It’s no secret there’s been a notable evolution in consumer demand for healthier purchases and experiences. In particular, organic and gluten-free choices are increasing in visibility. Not wanting to miss out, more restaurants are specializing in the farm-to-table movement and other healthier menu options.