The martinis, perfectly chilled, are presented on a silver tray. The hors d’oeuvres, including gravlax and crème fraîche on toast and grilled shrimp with pineapple relish, are scrumptious, tidy bites. And the conversation is lively among the dozen or so guests who have gathered in the 1927 Laguna Beach home of Jim Burba, 61, a
They quake in their clogs when they hear her name. Still, young chefs across America are dying to have Gail Simmons – along with Padma Lakshmi and Tom Colicchio – pass judgment on them in Bravo’s cooking competition “Top Chef.”
In the upcoming 13th season, Orange County restaurateur Amar Santana will compete
The first known cup of tea is thought to have been poured somewhere in China around the third century, and since then the world has joined in. Brews from the true tea plant, Camellia sinensis, didn’t reach the shores of Britain until the 1600s. Though they were late to the party, the British more than made up for it by weaving the taking o
I had heard a lot of stories about 57-year-old Billy Whitford, the founder and executive director of the Newport Aquatic Center in the Back Bay, whom everyone knows as just Billy.
Stories as in:“Billy is the Steve Jobs of California paddling.”
“Billy will drive a trailer full of canoes to Vegas for a race,
Her name is Mirga Gražinyte-Tyla, weird diacritical marks and all, and so people are starting to call her just Mirga to keep things simpler and safer. Born in Vilnius, Lithuania, less than 30 years ago, she is slender, not particularly tall and, one could even say, girlish in appearance, not exactly the type one expects to find on the podium of
On a Saturday morning in a backstage rehearsal room at Segerstrom Hall, 16 toy soldiers are marching in backward formation, morphing from two parallel lines into two rotating pinwheels. Though the outside girls are scrambling to keep in formation, and a stack of toy rifles in the corner slides noisily to the ground, the hushed group does not bre
Pumpkin pie deconstructed. That’s the inspiration behind Aqua Lounge’s latest cocktail experiment. During the month of pumpkin spice madness, the bartenders at The Island Hotel decided to celebrate autumnal flavors with their take on a Thanksgiving favorite: pumpkin pie. The Seasonal Spice cocktail combines fresh pumpkin puree with v
The artist: Nothing in the “very pleasant growing up” of Tony Delap in rural Northern California of the 1920s and ’30s predicted this son of a trial lawyer would become an artist, let alone a pioneer of West Coast minimalism and optical art. Works by Delap, an arts professor at UC Irvine from 1965 until 1991, are in collections
Frank Sinatra was born 100 years ago on December 12; the run-up to that date is seeing hundreds if not thousands of performances across the country. Many, inevitably, will be at the level of piano bar singers belting out “My Way,” predictably aping an artist who actually did sing it his way for more than half a century.
Decorators have come up with a bright idea: producing their own lighting collections to complement their styles and yours, referencing a world of inspirations from Moroccan lanterns to Chinese pottery, from floral to feather motifs. Some are sleek and architectural with a colorful twist; others take ceramic, glass and metal craftsmanship to dazz
Movement is the word this fall as fringe is having its moment. Finely threaded, string-like or Western-inspired, the tassled look works for a night on the town or an afternoon with friends.
This flirty little black dress ($465), from Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen’s always-edgy Elizabeth and James line strikes the perfect balanc
Making his way along the slippery landscape of a local tide pool, Kasey Eunice hops from wet rock to wet rock. The world here, he explains, is as teeming as it is vibrant. Purple sea urchins sway with the roiling currents. Mussels and barnacles create a buffet for seagulls and, depending on the tide, fish. In the sun baked water of the pools the
Gabe Serrato-Buelna lives to travel and travels to live. “I’ve been fortunate enough to have gone all over the world for work and pleasure,” he says. “But the place that has stolen my heart is San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.” Serrato-Buelna, founder of the Laguna Beach-based PR firm Serrato + Co., represents actors,
Call him Blackie from “General Hospital,” Uncle Jesse on “Full House” or “ER” doctor Tony Gates, or even Jimmy Martino from his recent sitcom “Grandfathered,” but whatever you do, call John Stamos a fan of the Beach Boys. When he was still a teen, Stamos – a Cypress native who played drums in
For 20 years, novelists, journalists, scientists, historians and other public figures have delivered lectures at the Newport Beach Public Library. I learned of the series when I was invited to speak there in March 1997. That long-ago night, I read from my second novel, “The Persistence of Memory.” The room was filled with students, f
Step onto the back patio of Lynn and Vaughn Eldstrom’s Mystic Hills house and behold.To the left, the houses of Arch Beach Heights dot the hills, like a post-card from Europe. To the right are sweeping views of the Pacific ocean, cool and blue and glassy as far as you can see.
Yet the couple rarely stepped off the patio for a
Inhale the harvest season, with its cozy, inviting scents laced with vanilla and golden images of changing leaves. Even in Southern California, where fall can mean scorching Santa Anas, we embrace at least the idea of a change of seasons. The beauty world follows, offering delectable products and treatments made with pumpkin, cinnamon, apple
A warm evening in late September at The Montage Laguna Beach was a fitting tableau for the 26th annual Collector’s Choice Juried Art Auction and Fundraiser for the Laguna College of Art and Design. A fashionable flock of more than 330 guests walked among the paintings and sculptures before heading into the grand gallery for cocktails and o
This column launched 30 months ago with one of the most iconic dishes in Orange County: the Ritz Egg. At that time, we knew that The Ritz was closing its Newport Beach location. The future looked uncertain for the Orange County culinary institution.
This month, the Ritz is back … sort of. The property is now called The Ritz Prime