Fabio is Top Chef’s Fan Favorite

Walking up to the front door of the newly opened FIRENZE OSTERIA, I read a saying on the wall “In order to get a good hug, you have to give one first.”  This is a mantra that the owners Fabio Viviani, Jacopo Falleni and Lisa Long, teach their staff daily. Fabio Viviana is living a dream come…

Best Mai Tais in Glendale

Without knowing it was a special event, we walked into a 73rd birthday celebration at Damon’s in Glendale last night. We had tickets to the Glendale Center Theater and thought we would have a light dinner at Damon’s. Balloons decorated the entryway and throughout the restaurant and tables. Two huge birthday cakes (by nearby Porto’s)…

Fun French Dining

Walking into Café Beaujolais I noticed the waiters all wore t-shirts that read “Everything French, but the Attitude.” The word “but” has an X over it and the word “Even” is underneath. This is a place where the French waiters (they all have the accent) smile and are friendly. Their attitude is charming.  The French music…

More than just a good cup of Joe

“Behind every great man, is a great woman,” comes to mind while talking to Brad Gold, owner of Black Dog Coffee.  His wife Evie often helps him create new menu items at his café in the Miracle Mile. Years ago, while Evie was in Palm Desert with some girlfriends, she dined at a restaurant that served…

Food Good for Your Soul

As we sat down in our booth at the Water Grill near the Biltmore Hotel in downtown Los Angeles, I unfolded my extra-large white linen napkin.  Near the top was a large buttonhole. “Sixty percent of our guests fasten their napkin to the top button of their shirt,” stated our waiter. “It saves our diners on…

Boy Meets Girl

It’s a great boy meets girl story. The boy is Nick Jacobs, a graduate from Beverly Hills high school and the Institute of Culinary Education in New York.  After working with some of the top chefs learning the best “tricks of the trade,” he grew tired of the traffic and snow in New York and moved…

Visually Spectacular

“In my country children get to play with fire,” shared Executive Chef Mohan Ismail born and raised in Singapore.  “My mom worked nights, so when I was five or six years old I cooked a lot of egg dishes.”  His mother was his inspiration to becoming a chef. “The way I cook and manage people, is…

Napa Valley Experience

Executive Chef Joseph Gillard at Napa Valley Grille appreciates farmers. Raised on a 40-acre farm in Michigan with goats, chickens, rabbits, pigs, pheasants and cows, his family had a large vegetable garden and market stand to provide sustenance and income. At the age of five, he became infatuated with food while watching Julia Childs on…

Caviar: The new Health Craze

As we took our seat inside the elegant décor of Petrossian restaurant, Sally, a tan, blonde and stylish woman walked in with a man and two gorgeous girls. The girls were so excited to lunch at Petrossian that they let out a squeal of glee when they saw Christopher Klapp, the General Manager and their favorite server, Carlos. …