Small Bites: Il Sole reopens in West Hollywood. JDate launches JPicks.com, 'the chosen deals.' Casey's Cupcakes wins 'Cupcake Wars.'
'The Chosen Deals': Earlier this month JDate, the online community for Jewish singles, launched JPicks, a website featuring a different discount (from 50% to 90% off) at Los Angeles shops, retaurants and entertainment venues every day. Since selling out its first offer, JPicks has had success with its "Chosen Deals," ranging from Jewish- and date-themed deals in line with its direct demographic, to more general ones that people who aren't single or Jewish can also enjoy. See www.jpicks.com.
The new Il Sole: In the heart of West Hollywood, chef Isaac Rivera has updated the menu at Los Angeles staple Il Sole to go along with the reopening and new design of the restaurant. Rivera is focusing on regional Italian favorites such as eggplant Parmigiana “Napoli style”; manila clams sautéed with white wine, garlic and olive oil; and spaghetti with Tuscan ragu. Il Sole will also feature a special crudo menu. It’s cooking that’s meant to go with the new vibe, described as stylized trattoria mixed with a romantic atmosphere.
8741 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles; (310) 657-1182.
Cupcake coup: With sugar diamonds, rice paper feathers and some chocolate crunch balls, Casey's Cupcakes won the Food Network program "Cupcake Wars" last night. Having just opened a second location (with one already in Riverside) in Laguna Beach this month, owner Casey Reinhardt -- whom you may recall from MTV's "Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County" -- is celebrating. With cupcakes. She'll be making appearances at both locations on Saturday with live music and, most importantly, packs of cupcakes for sale featuring the four winning flavors: white chocolate cherry, white Russian, chili chocolate and lavender.
303 Broadway St., Laguna Beach; 949-715-8245; also at the Historic Mission Inn Hotel & Spa, 3649 Mission Inn Ave., Riverside; 951-328-6908; www.caseyscupcake.com.
-- Emma Wartzman
Photo: Cupcakes from "Cupcake Wars"/Food Network