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Roast Chicken

Despite the bounty of south-of-the border restaurants in Southern California, I've always felt there are far too few Brazilian establishments here. I grew to love the dishes from the regions of Rio, Fortaleza and Sao Paulo when I lived in New York City because I had easy access to a vibrant Brazilian enclave bordering West 42nd Street in Manhattan. So you can imagine my delight when I learned that a Brazilian restaurant, Galletto Caffe & Grill, opened recently in Westlake Plaza.
January 12, 2013 | By Russ Parsons, Los Angeles Times
Meghan and Carter are getting married. Like so many friends of my daughter, they are bright, funny and, sometimes, almost preternaturally serious. A couple of weeks ago, they asked my wife if we would talk to them about how to stay married - and about how to cook. The first, I'll leave to Kathy; after almost 34 years, it's still a mystery to me. But the cooking part is right up my alley, and, even better, I figured it would give me a chance to try out some of the ideas I've been on a soapbox about for the last couple of years.
September 1, 2011 | By S. Irene Virbila
The white grape Grechetto has a long history in Umbria in central Italy. It's an essential part of the blend for the region's best-known white, Orvieto. But winemakers in Todi, a medieval hill town near Perugia, use the native grape on its own to make Grechetto di Todi. One of the best is made by the Roccafiore estate. Fiorfiore, as it's called, is pale gold with a scent of tropical fruit and flowers. The 2009 is rich and round, but with a nice snap of acidity. It stands out for its elegance.
May 12, 2011 | By S. Irene Virbila, Los Angeles Times
  What a lovely expression of Pinot Noir from New Zealand's Mountford estate. Elegant and smooth, this New World Pinot carries the taste of Santa Rosa plums and sweet Asian spices. The scent jumps right out of the glass — sandalwood, and something leafy and delicate. In this weather, chill it just a bit and serve with roast chicken, sweetbreads or roast leg of lamb. Region: Waipara Valley, New Zealand Price: $29 to $35 Style: Rich and full-bodied What it goes with: Roast chicken or leg of lamb Where to find it: Flask Fine Wines in Studio City, (818)
Chimichangas--crisp-fried tortilla bundles of tender chicken with cheese and sour cream--are ridiculously easy to make when you have leftover roast chicken. Kids love them, grown-ups love them and, if you feel like rewarding yourself for making dinner on a hectic weeknight, they are terrific with margaritas.
May 6, 2010 | By S. Irene Virbila, Los Angeles Times
  2007 Quinta do Vallado Douro Vinho Tinto Dry red wines from the Douro Valley in Portugal, the traditional source for Port grapes, are the new story in this gorgeous wine region to the north of Lisbon. Top Douro wines command high prices, but here's a beauty that's priced for the everyday table. The 2007 Vallado Douro is easy-drinking and delicious. Bursting with fruit, bright with the tastes of blueberry, cherries and plums, it is smooth going, as versatile a wine as a cru Beaujolais or a top-notch Chianti, say. It's perfect with pizza, a simple roast chicken or a grilled skirt steak.
March 20, 2014 | By S. Irene Virbila
This is a great example of Willamette Valley Pinot Noir from Oregon in an outstanding vintage. The grapes come from the famous Shea Vineyard in Yamhill County. The result is a Pinot with lovely dark-toned fruit, a pretty nose of rose petals and cherries, and a smooth, silky texture. And you don't need to know a thing about wine or Pinot Noir to appreciate its beauty. It's great with sautéed calf's liver, fried quail, a roast chicken or a pot pie. Region: Willamette Valley, Oregon Price: $33 to $50 Style: Rich and full-bodied What it goes with: Calf's liver, quail, roast chicken, pot pie Where to find it: BestWinesOnline (888)
October 20, 2011 | By S. Irene Virbila
When I invited a new friend to dinner last week and asked her to bring a wine, she asked about the menu. And evidently she listened, because she came up with the most brilliant match for the Hungarian goulash: this St. Laurent, a close relative of Pinot Noir, from one of Austria's best wine estates. Soft and earthy, with a brilliant cherry color and just the slightest hint of strawberries and plums in the nose, it held its own against the smoky paprika in the sauce. It's hard to find a red this subtle and evolved anywhere for less than $25. But not many wine drinkers are curious enough to try a red from Austria.
May 6, 2009 | S. Irene Virbila
Such a pretty Gewurztraminer from Alsace -- aromatic, scented with spices and flowers, it has the faintest touch of sweetness married with a lively acidity, so it's never cloying. Helfrich's 2007 Gewurztraminer excels as a match for Asian foods -- Thai, Vietnamese and spicy Chinese dishes. But it would be wonderful, too, with a fresh pea soup or risotto, or a spring minestrone and a simple roast chicken.
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