Archive for March, 2011
Performance artist Guillermo Gomez-Pena unveils his new solo work, Strange Democracy — a shocking, gripping and insistently entertaining meditation on both the chalk-white past and the multicultural future of America. Peter Sellars, himself a master of the stage, calls him “one of the handful of great performance artists in America today.” Like a seeker missile in heat, Gomez-Pena hits all the hot-button issues dead-on: anti-immigration mania, the easily scalable U.S.-Mexico border fence, the conveniently variable fear of the alien. I’ve been periodically giving out a “list” per-say for things to do in los angeles, and i’m addin’ this one to it. He’s a polyglot with a taste for multiple personalities, and he has a tenacious grasp of both the technical and the humane, the cumulative effect of which is to transform such impersonal concepts as race into the face of the individual. To quote William Hazlitt, that great critic of the English language, “We can scarcely hate anyone that we know.”
Soaring through the air without a plane, jetpack, or parachute is a reality when you go indoor skydiving. If the word skydiving is giving you pause, don’t worry; you won’t be jumping out of a plane or from any high distance. Essentially, you’ll be riding the wind created by a powerful vertical wind tunnel.
Unlike traditional skydiving, there are no restrictions on age or weight. In other words, indoor skydiving is an activity the whole family can enjoy. In fact, on our last vacation out west, I took my wife and kids indoor skydiving California style. They loved every minute of it, especially my wife who is afraid of heights and would never be able to experience traditional skydiving.
Michael’s, the acclaimed Santa Monica restaurant known for sourcing the freshest sustainable ingredients for its cuisine, teams up with acclaimed mixologist, Jason Robey to launch their new mixology program. Stop by for gourmet cocktails–some made with herbs grown on the new rooftop garden and fresh produce from the Santa Monica Farmers’ Market. Many of those who take LA tours stop by Michaels, now this gives even more reason. My favorites include the Mary Rose (Cranberry & Ginger-infused Titos Vodka, Lime, Vanilla Simple Syrup, Charred Rosemary), Regional Export (Lemon Juice, Vanilla Simple Syrup, House Orgeat, Kelt VSOP, Nowas Mill Kentucky Bourbon, Egg White, Angostura Bitters) and Karai Karai (Jalapeno & Red Bell Pepper Simple Syrup, Lemon, Cilantro, Jalapeño, Grapefruit, Yamasaki 12-Year Single Malt, Chipotle Tabasco). Bar bites like sage & lemon popcorn, yellowtail crudo, duck prosciutto and sliders (foie gras, market berry mustard, Yand Wagyu beef, Shaft’s bleu cheese) accompany, along with a new art exhibition, “Drawn” with pieces from Alejandro Gehry and Vanessa Prager.
Michael’s Santa Monica, 1147 Third St, Santa Monica, 310.451.0843.
Chef Albert Aviles rolls out his spring menu March 24 and offers a special tasting event that night with Los Olivos-based Epiphany Cellars. Mix and mingle with the Epiphany team while sipping on a flight of 5 wines ($15). Nosh on Aviles’ spring selections of Banh Mi sliders, spice-crusted pork chop and a Spring lamb sandwich. Also stop by for Test Kitchen Tuesdays to try Chef Aviles’ new creations for $2 a taste, or weekday happy hour from 4-7 p.m. Open daily from 11:30 a.m. Corkbar, 403 West 12th St., downtown, 213.746.0050
Fig & Olive
New York-based Fig & Olive has opened an 8,000-square-foot, Riviera-inspired restaurant and tasting bar on the corner of Melrose Place. Chef Pascal Lorange offers a menu of refined elegance with a special focus on olive oil. Upstairs is the Fig Champagne & Cocktail Bar. 8490 N. La Cienega Blvd., L.A., 310.360.9100
Late-night dining in Hollywood just got more stylish. Find two stories of a chic, yet relaxed environment that boasts two full bars and a second floor lounge that leads out to an outdoor patio. This cafe provides travelers perfect opportunity to stop by during their Los Angeles tour. Chef Michael Ben’s menu features pretty much anything you would want any time of day including breakfast, sandwiches and paninis, salads, pizzas and pastas and entrees like lamb chops, seared duck breast and grilled salmon. Open 24 hours Thurs. – Sat. 1600 Vine St., Hollywood, 323.467.4200.
March 27. When some of contemporary theater’s most talented voices – including Pulitzer Prize winner Beth Henley, Peabody Award winner Theresa Rebeck and two-time Steinberg/ATCA New Play award finalist Michele Lowe — tackle the subject of motherhood, the result is an eyeopening, hilarious and irresistible night of theater. Theater is a popular subject of interest among those who see to Los Angeles sightseeing tours. More than a dozen of today’s best playwrights come together to share their personal stories on one of the most universal themes.
Audrey Skirball Kenis Theater, Geffen Playhouse, 10886 Le Conte Ave.
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
The organization that presents the Oscars offers entertainment-industry-related displays and film series. Continuing Masters of the Close Up, Up Close: Portraits of Cinematographers by Owen Roizman; Bob Peak: Creating the Modern Movie Poster.
Tu–F 10 am–5 pm; Sa–Su noon–6 pm.
8949 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, 310.247.3600
The Annenberg Space for Photography
Ten thousand square feet with digital projection gallery, print exhibit area. Continuing Extreme Exposure.
W–Su 11 am–6 pm.
Parking $3.50, $1 after 4:30 pm and all day Sa–Su. Admission free.
2000 Avenue of the Stars, Century City, 310.209.4560
Beautiful travertine-clad hilltop facility houses stunning collections of paintings, drawings, antiquities, photographs and decorative arts. Fabulous central garden and city views. Through March 27 Obsidian Mirror-Travels: Refracting Ancient Mexican Art and Archaeology. Opening March 29 Spirit of an Age: Drawings From the Germanic World, 1770–1900. Continuing Brush and Shutter: Early Photography in China; In Focus: The Tree; Gods of Angkor: Bronzes From the National Museum of Cambodia; Stories to Watch: Narrative in Medieval Manuscripts; Felice Beato: A Photographer on the Eastern Road; Photography From the New China. Ongoing New Galleries for Medieval and Renaissance Sculpture and Decorative Arts; La Roldona’s Saint Ginés: The Making of a Polychrome Sculpture. This is among my favorite places to be when I tour Los Angeles. Always a new experience.
Tu–F, Su 10 am–5:30 pm; Sa 10 am–9 pm.
Admission free; parking $15, free Sa after 5 pm.
1200 Getty Center Drive, L.A., 310.440.7300
LA County Museum of Art
Diverse premier collections; Broad Contemporary Art Museum. LACMA West nearby. New Resnick Pavilion. Opening March 13 Human Nature: Contemporary Art From the Collections; Vija Celmins: Television and Disaster 1964–1966. Through March 27 Fashioning Fashion: European Dress in Detail, 1700–1915. Continuing Elizabeth Taylor in Iran; Larry Fink: Hollywood, 2000–2009; In the Service of the Buddha: Tibetan Furniture From the Hayward Family Collection.
M–Tu, Th noon–8 pm, F until 9 pm; Sa–Su 11 am–8 pm. Closed W.
$8–$12, under 18 free. LACMA West free.
LACMA, 5905 Wilshire Blvd.; LACMA West, 6067 Wilshire Blvd., L.A., 323.857.6000
M–Tu noon–7 pm; F–Sa 11 am–midnight; Su 11 am–11 pm.
If you aren’t aware of this fantastic pier, you can get some more info off an LA tour.
Admission free; rides $3–$5, unlimited pass $15.95–$24.95.
380 Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica, 310.260.8744
Starts March 31. BREADBAR Century City’s guest food truck series extracts chefs from LA’s premier food trucks and offers a one-night-only meal of inspired small plates priced at $8 each. This long event is something that should be added to your los angeles tour plans, easy enough to find some space i’m sure. In March, selected choices from Food Network’s “The Great Food Truck Race” winners Grill ‘Em All truck, followed in coming months by food from Great Balls on Tires, Dim Sum Truck, Frysmith, Gastrobus and many more.
10250 Santa Monica Blvd., Century City, 310.277.3770
Umami burger – What is Umami Burger? Maybe you have heard abour this burger. The umami burger is served up by a four-restaurant chain in Los Angeles, which uses Japanese-style ingredients to create savory umami burger creations. Umami Burger, southern California’s new, Japanese-flavored burger chain, is expanding with a new twist – a delicatessen dedicated to umami.
The umami flavor is the so-called “fifth taste” beyond sweet, sour, bitter, and salty, often referred to as savoriness or “meaty” flavor. And the Umamicatessen, due to open in Los Angeles this summer, will consist of four or five restaurants that sell food with an umami flavor. Diners will be able to eat deli food or dessert. Or, they can opt for one of the Umami burgers that started the umami craze. Along with the best burger around, going for the best Los Angeles tour would also cater to your “best of” wants and needs. Perfect for any visit to LA.
Truffle Burger. This is the burger that needs to be experienced. For it puts on a show, a show of tastastic proportions. I have never eaten a burger this intensely savory in all it’s goodness before.
Santa Monica, CA 90401-2406
4 other restaurants around the area…