March 29, 1987
Jeane Kirkpatrick's article on Provence in Traveling in Style warmed my homesick heart. I once went to Provence for a holiday and stayed 10 years. Kirkpatrick has more pleasant surprises coming from Provence. She is obviously familiar with some of the regional wines but unaware that certain Provencal wines do indeed qualify for their own Appelation Controlee, the highest category of the French classification system. The best-known, and one that is available in the United States, comes from the Domaines Ott, which produces an excellent Cru Classe blanc de blanc.
September 2, 2010 |
Defying the trend of generic internationalization in the wine world, Rueda in northern Spain has come back full circle to its unique local grape. Verdejo makes for one of the most delightful white wines of summer: aromatic and lively, with refreshing lime fruit and pretty jasmine notes. The price range is reasonable, about $9 to $20. No wonder Rueda is the only region in Spain where exports actually increased during the worldwide economic downturn of 2009. Verdejo's comeback is a feel-good story for people who don't want wine everywhere to be the same.
August 13, 1987 |
In some parts of the wine world, when a talented wine maker forsakes the vineyard region of his birth for another, it is likely to be regarded as a veritable act of treason. That is the risk Franco Giacosa took when he left his native Alba, in the heart of Barolo Piedmont country, to become the chief wine maker at Duca di Salaparuta Winery in Sicily, a region better known for Marsala.
April 8, 2010 |
The other night at Bar Pintxo in Santa Monica there was a wine dinner of sorts. Which is to say a number of tables were pushed together to form a single surface, and a dozen strangers gathered to share heaping plates of cured salame and Idiazábal cheese, razor clams drenched in lemon and parsley, braised lamb and spicy chorizo stew. By the end of the evening strangers were friends, and a chilly spring evening seemed much warmer. I couldn't help thinking how different a meal like this was from one in a French restaurant: no tablecloths, no gleaming silver, no froufrou service.
July 15, 2013 |
Lovers of Piedmontese wines have a rare chance Wednesday to taste through the Vietti estate's wines with winemaker Luca Currado at Michael's on Naples in Long Beach. Currado is not only one of the best winemakers in Piedmont, he's a talker, passionate about Barolo and his family's estate in Castiglione Falletto. He's also incredibly down-to-earth and approachable. Guests for the six-course dinner prepared by Michael's executive chef David Coleman will taste seven of Vietti's wines, including two 2009 single-vineyard Barberas, the 2007 Barbaresco “Masseria” and the 2008 Barolo “Brunate.” Coleman's menu starts off with butter-poached prawn with summer squash puree for the Arneis, then moves on to Devil's Gulch Farm rabbit sausage with oven-roasted cherry tomatoes and corn salad with the two Barberas.
January 13, 2002
For weeks I've rushed to the Sunday Calendar listings, to "Moulin Rouge," to read again "a film that can't escape the defects of its virtues." What a marvelous phrase. I'm using it daily to describe restaurants, wines, books, autos, politicians. My wife threatens to leave me if I don't stop. I will try. But first I must know what the phrase means. I rented the movie for guidance. No luck. Please, Kenneth Turan, or someone, explain before she literally escapes the defects of my virtues.
July 14, 2011
Enjoy a dinner inspired by ancient Roman recipes and learn about culinary pleasures in the time of Caesar during At the Roman Table: A Culinary Adventure. Food historian Andrew Dalby speaks about the nature of power dining in ancient Rome, identifying great wines, local produce and luxuries that made up a fashionable dinner 2,000 years ago. The Getty Villa, 17985 Pacific Coast Highway, Pacific Palisades. 7-10 p.m. Thu. and Fri. $75 includes lecture, four-course dinner served family style and wine.
March 9, 1989 |
Every fan of English historical novels or Regency romances is familiar with the fact that at least once in each story the ladies retire from the dining room after dinner, leaving the gentlemen to their Port and cigars. It was a classic example of the sort of sexism that would raise hackles today, whether one likes Port and cigars or not. Fortunately, today's Ports--and the savories that accompany them--are enjoyed by both sexes, usually together.
December 21, 1986 |
Pleasures of the Table by Florence Fabricant (Harry N. Abrams: 175 pp., illustrated). Beware! Make no mistake about this book. It's a beautiful volume with photos, mostly by Matthew Klein, that woo the senses. But, and this is a big "but," this book belongs on the kitchen bookshelf where it is handy for the cook, not in the living room. Based on the monthly column that food writer Florence Fabricant has written for Signature magazine over the years, the book offers a selection of menus that range from formal dinner parties to some delectable suggestions for dining alfresco.
August 23, 1998
I was in Los Angeles last fall and was able to catch your review of travel destinations in New England for fall foliage ("All Aboard for Fall," Sept. 7). I thought you might be interested in another travel destination that includes all the foliage splendor that the eyes can take in, as well as the best in arts and entertainment, accommodations and Colonial history. This place is Ithaca, N.Y., and the Finger Lakes region. I will admit I am partial to the area because I am a graduate of Cornell University in Ithaca.