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Class and Correction

January 04, 1998

Hooray for S. Irene Virbila's splendid article "Rustic Chic" (Nov. 23) about Manka's Inverness Lodge on Tomales Bay in Inverness, Calif.

The owner, Margaret Grade, is not only a superb master chef whose dining room can hold its own with many of the three-star restaurants in France, but she is also an interior decorator and extraordinary floral arranger whose personality and charm are why Manka's is so very special. She probably has the best list of California wines.

On a recent visit, we stayed (a party of four) at the Boathouse, right on Tomales Bay, an 80-year-old building once used to repair boats. Margaret has transformed this building into a spiffy cottage with three bedrooms, a living room and outdoor patio, each the size of a tennis court. It also has a long private pier.

We can't wait to return.


Los Angeles


I should have read the author's name before reading the delightful article on her weekend in Tomales Bay. The mouthwatering descriptions of every bite, morsel, picnic, lunch and dinner indicated the writer was someone who knew and loved food. Yes, it was by S. Irene Virbila, known more to us readers as a Times food writer than a travel one.

Which explains why she drove "through rolling hills and vast dairy farms with their herds of black and white Guernseys." Irene may know food, but she sure doesn't know cows! Black and whites are Holsteins, while Guernseys are beautiful deer-like golden browns. Food, 10; writing, 10; cows, 0. Two outta' three ain't bad.


Manhattan Beach

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