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February 12, 2006 | Catherine Saillant, Times Staff Writer
HEAVY mist lingered on the morning of our great adventure -- a truffle hunt in the grape-laden hills of the Piedmont region in northern Italy. Our truffle hunter appeared out of the fog to greet us, strolling up a lovely country road as a brown-and-white mutt trotted at his side. He had on worn black boots, carried a curved walking stick and had deep crinkles on his face. Hollywood could not have produced a more appealing practitioner of the ancient truffle-hunting trade than Beppe Farenetti.
January 6, 2011 | By S. Irene Virbila, Los Angeles Times
For a long time, Los Angeles chefs had the city to themselves. Outsiders might have turned up for a guest chef turn or two, but never much more than that. But then a couple of years ago that all changed, and Los Angeles was suddenly as attractive as Las Vegas to restaurateurs with satellite restaurants to shop. Fancy that. And now, following Thomas Keller ( Bouchon ), Tom Colicchio ( Craft ), Laurent Tourondel ( BLT Steak ), and José Andrés ( Bazaar ), to name a few, comes Scott Conant with Scarpetta , the fourth iteration of his high-end Italian restaurant in New York's meatpacking district.
December 21, 1986 | Joan Drake
Great American Food Almanac by Irena Chalmers with Milton Glaser and Friends (Harper & Row: $14.95, 232 pp., illustrated). This almanac includes culinary quizzes, quotes, trivia, lists and recipes. The eclectic collection examines both fun and serious food issues. The is a book food enthusiasts will enjoy curling up to read on a rainy day. Check out the current culinary ins and outs, learn a bit about U.S. agribusiness and aquabusiness, explore the changing world of eating in, eating out, food on video and cottage industries.
February 14, 2013 | By Jenn Harris
Hey Girl, Happy Valentine's Day. It's me. Ryan Gosling. Wouldn't it be great if you picked up your ringing phone today and it was Ryan Gosling calling? His smirking face with that signature furrowed brow and blue eyes filling your calling screen? Well now you can, sort of. Hasty Torres of Madame Chocolat at D.L. & Co. Beverly Hills has created a custom chocolate iPhone. For $35 you can make it look like Ryan Gosling, a.k.a. Mr. Perfect, or whoever your crush may be, is calling.
Today is going to be one mother of a shopping day. Florists who have seen steadily budding business all week expect sales to burst into spectacular bloom. Leslie Adkinson of Leslie's Hallmark in Ventura, which has the good fortune of being next to a florist, expects nothing short of "bedlam" as last-minute shoppers crowd the aisles.
November 8, 2006 | S. Irene Virbila, Times Staff Writer
IT'S an Indian summer night on the Venice boardwalk and a typically Fellini-esque scene with poncho-wearing retro hippies beating out tunes on battered guitars while skaters speed among joggers, bikers and beach lovers walking their pooches. The crescent moon hangs above the palm trees ruffled by the salty breeze. And at 5 Dudley Ave., a block from the beach, bohemian bons vivants are sipping wine at tables in front of Piccolo Ristorante Italiano.
August 13, 2008 | S. Irene Virbila, Times Restaurant Critic
YOU SNAG a parking spot on the street in the middle of Brand Boulevard's endless row of car dealerships and as you get out of the car, you can feel the salesmen go into high alert. A possible buyer for that gas-guzzling truck? No, just another food lover on the way to the most exciting and delicious new restaurant to open in a very long time -- Palate Food + Wine. This is the breakout restaurant for Octavio Becerra, who put in years with Patina Restaurant Group and was the original chef at Pinot Bistro in Studio City.
January 14, 1988 | JOAN DRAKE, Times Staff Writer
Question: An Italian cooking expert I'm not, so when it comes time to top the various pasta dishes I make I'm at a loss. Could you please explain the differences between the sauces used in Italian cooking? For instance, what exactly are the differences between marinara, pesto and regular tomato sauce? Answer: The following is a partial list of pasta sauces excerpted and adapted from "A Pocket Guide to Italian Food and Wine" (A Fireside Book--Simon & Schuster: 1986, $5.
The fashion news in fish bait this season is color. Living, wiggling color. When it comes to worms, brown is out. Day-Glo chartreuse, red and blue are in. Designer squirmers, created in Canada, made their debut in Ventura County last week. Anglers have tried them at Lake Piru and Lake Casitas, and although fish in Lake Piru don't seem impressed, some bait shops on the road to Lake Casitas are doing a brisk business.
This year, skip the master gardening class about how to keep whiteflies out of your orange trees. Forget the annual pilgrimage to the nursery for zucchini starts. Plant your own truffle trees and grow something your friends will actually want. That's what I've done, with the help of a truffle grower, Mother Nature and all the patience I can muster. The most prized truffle varieties are the white truffle of Alba, Italy (Tuber magnatum pico), and the Perigord black truffle (Tuber melanosporum).
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