Daily Dish

The inside scoop on food in Los Angeles

Category: Julia Child

3 Food Events You Should Know About: Planned Parenthood's Food Fare; 'Bistronomics' at Breadbar; wine and pizza tasting at Rosso Wine Shop


A Planned Parenthood party: On March 10, Planned Parenthood will host its 32nd annual Food Fare, where supporters of the organization and foodies will join together to eat and raise money for the health centers that provide care to more than 120,000 women, men and teens every year. What started out as a simple cooking demonstration by Julia Child has become the largest fund-raising event for Planned Parenthood L.A., and features food from top restaurants such as Church and State, A.O.C., Ammo, Clementine, Tavern and Lucques, as well as some of the city's most popular food trucks. VIP reception for sponsors is 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.; the daytime session is 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.; and the evening session is 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Advance tickets are $150 for the daytime session and $225 for the evening session.

Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, 1855 Main St., Santa Monica; to purchase tickets or for more information, visit www.pplafoodfare.com.

'Bistronomics' pop-up: Breadbar and chef Jet Tila of Wazuzu at the Wynn Encore in Las Vegas host a two-night dining event called "Bistronomics." On March 6 and 7 from 6 to 10 p.m., Alex Ageneau, sous chef at the Royce at the Langham in Pasadena, will be cooking a five-course prix-fixe dinner, featuring dishes such as smoked cod with crème fraiche and a caramelized apple tart with onions and walnuts, among others. Guests will be able to interact with the chef as they watch the dishes being prepared in an open kitchen. $65 a person, reservations recommended.

8718 W. 3rd St., Los Angeles; (310) 205-0124; www.breadbar.net.

Wine to go with pizza: On Friday and Saturday, Russo Wine Shop is hosting a wine tasting to go with pizza, from 5 to 8 p.m. each night. For $10 a person, 2009 Luigi Giusti Rosato, 2007 Rubino Primitivo Punto Aquila and 2008 Valle Dell'Acate Nero d'Avola II Moro can all be sampled. Pizza is an additional $10. 

3459-1/2 N. Verdugo Road, Glendale; (818) 330-9130; www.rossowineshop.com. 

-- Emma Wartzman

Photo: Ray Chavez /Contra Costa Times / MCT

A snub for Julia, obese babies, liquor store smackdown and more


--Julia Child -- I mean Meryl Streep -- was snubbed. But was she robbed? Should she have won the Oscar over Sandra Bullock?

--Today, one of every three U.S. children is overweight — but it's much easier to prevent obesity than to treat it. That's why pediatric obesity experts now say intervention should begin early — very early.

--"Kings of Pastry" will have its U.S. premiere in April, and offers a mouthwatering peek into the kitchens of eminent French chefs. But others hope the film will go on to help give greater options to people with diverse learning skills.

--New York is considering allowing grocery stores to sell wine -- the money from new liquor licenses would help ease a budget crunch. But the powerful liquor store lobby has other ideas.

-- Rene Lynch 

Photo credit: Meryl Streep as Julia Child in "Julie & Julia." Credit: EPA


Foodies, rejoice! Julia Child, er, Meryl Streep gets the nod for 'Julie & Julia'

We're not surprised. But we're plenty glad.

Meryl Streep earned an unprecedented 16th Oscar acting nomination Tuesday morning -- a feat no one else, man or woman, has ever achieved -- for channeling food goddess Julia Child in the film "Julie & Julia."

Streep is the front-runner, as her performance earned universal raves and she is clearly a favorite of the Academy of Motion Picture Art & Sciences. But it's not a done deal. She goes up against three first-time nominees -- Sandra Bullock, who is having a Cinderella-esque year for "The Blind Side," Carey Mulligan for "An Education" and Gabourey Sidibe for "Precious: Based on the novel 'Push' by Sapphire" as well as actress Helen Mirren, nominated for "The Last Station."

Doesn't it seem like Streep must have a mantle full of Oscar gold? In fact, she has two Academy Awards, and only one of them is for best actress: She won a trophy for best supporting actress for 1979's "Kramer vs. Kramer" and another best actress statuette for 1982's "Sophie's Choice."

What do you think? Isn't she overdue?

Also nominated in the documentary category: "Food, Inc.," a visual manifesto about our corporate-controlled food supply and the mistreatment of farm animals. 

Click here for the rest of Tuesday's nominations:


Times Food Editor Russ Parsons dishes on the secret at the center of 'Julie & Julia'

PHOTO GALLERY: Julia Child -- Her life in pictures

Photo: Jonathan Wenk / Columbia Pictures/Sony 

Today's headlines: A journo tries cooking school, how to glow like Jen, S.F. vs. S.D. and more

Headlines from today's L.A. Times:

-- Inspired by "Julie & Julia," our Phil Zimmerman headed to cooking school -- at Philo Apple Farm Cooking School, 120 miles northwest of San Francisco in the bucolic Anderson Valley wine country.

-- So many wineries, so little time. The Golden State is home to nearly 3,000 wineries. So how to choose? Here's your guide to California wineries.

-- Every year, millions of people find themselves craving a vacation from Greater Los Angeles. Many of these people don't want to cross state lines or climb mountains or contend with deserts, rivers, lakes, waterfalls, redwoods, Gold Country or Mickey Mouse. Which leaves them facing this question: San Francisco or San Diego? Let the debate begin.

-- Want to have a red-carpet glow à la Jennifer Aniston? Eat your veggies.

-- At McSorley's Old Ale House in New York's East Village, established in 1854, Geoffrey Bartholomew plays both poet and bartender.

Photos: At left, San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge at dawn. Credit: Robert Durell / Los Angeles Times. At right, sunset over Coronado Bridge in San Diego. Credit: Micha Pawlitzki / Getty Images

Gifts for cooks: 'The Way to Cook'

Julia dvd

New on DVD is Julia Child's 1985 cooking series "The Way to Cook." The two-DVD set makes a thoughtful stocking stuffer for a beginning and French-leaning chef or one who'd like to brush up on basic skills. That's 360 minutes of the beloved Julia preparing six hourlong lessons.

The set comes with a recipe booklet and none of the recipes inside look particularly daunting. Some are just a paragraph or two or three long, easy delicious stuff -- variations on sautéed chicken, coq au vin, pot roast braised in red wine, cauliflower au gratin, crèpes suzette, all old-fashioned dishes that work today.

Julia Child: "The Way to Cook," produced by Julia Child Productions Inc., WGBH-Boston and Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House Inc.; two DVDs/Color, 360 minutes, $24.95.

--S. Irene Virbila

Scan of DVD set cover with photograph by Brian Leatart

Julie Powell memoir is found less than satisfying so far

Cleaving It's unlikely that Julie Powell -- blogger turned author turned media celebrity and played by Amy Adams in the film "Julie & Julia" -- is smiling over the early reviews for her new book, "Cleaving: A Story of Marriage, Meat and Obsession." The book chronicles her troubled marriage, her sordid affair with another man and her desire to learn the art of butchery. Some highlights:

From the Los Angeles Times, which calls the memoir vain and lacking insight and the author an "unreliable narrator": " 'Cleaving' is an ambitious undertaking. ... An entertaining writer, she almost pulls it off. ... Yet despite some fine writing about butchery, and some not-so-fine writing about romance, 'Cleaving' turns out to be not much more than a rambling recitation -- not to say defense -- of all sorts of bad behavior."

From the Village Voice, whose review includes some of Powell's more explicit language regarding her affair: "How much you'll enjoy the book also depends on how much you'll enjoy Powell's voice, which is by turns solipsistic, grating, endlessly self-indulgent, and, worst of all, boring."

So far, no word on whether this book will be turned into a movie.

-- Rene Lynch

Photo credit: Carlo Allegri / Associated Press 

Small Bites: Peach tart at Platine, absinthe at Tonga Hut, new menu at Copa d'Oro

The Tonga Hut in North HollywoodEvery Monday night from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m. the vintage tiki bar the Tonga Hut offers Absinthe-Minded Mondays, featuring absinthe cocktails concocted by Lisa Marie. 12808 Victory Blvd., North Hollywood. (818) 769-0708, www.tongahut.com.

Copa d’Oro recently introduced several new cocktails to its menu, including the Custer Cocktail (Sazerac Rye, Galliano, Cynar, celery bitter and rhubarb bitter; $13), the Black Rosemary Diamond (gin, Crème de Cassis, blackberry, fresh lime juice and rosemary; $12); the Jersey Pie (applejack, vanilla and fresh lemon juice; $11); and several others. Copa d'Oro, 217 Broadway, Santa Monica. (310) 576-3030, www.copadoro.com.

A peach tart won Platine's recent Julia Child recipe contest. You can try the bakery's version of it from now through Saturday. 10850 Washington Blvd., Culver City. (310) 559-9933, www.platinecookies.com.

-- Elina Shatkin

Photo: The Tonga Hut in North Hollywood. Credit: Lawrence K. Ho / Los Angeles Times

Celebrating Julia Child

Meryl Streep portrays Julia Child in a scene from Julie & Julia.

"Julie & Julia," perhaps the most hyped food-themed movie since "Like Water For Chocolate" opens today, and a few places are offering Julia Child-themed deals of their own.

In honor of Child's birthday on Aug. 15, Platine Sweets & Savories has chosen a few of its favorite dessert recipes from "Mastering the Art of French Cooking" and is inviting patrons to vote via blog, Facebook, e-mail, Twitter or in person on which dessert it should feature during the week of her birthday. Choices are: peach tart, lemon and almond tart, crepe cake, blackberry clafouti, the Queen of Sheba (a chocolate cake with a slightly underdone center), palmiers cookies, or almond biscotti. 10850 Washington Blvd., Culver City. (310) 559-9933, www.platinecookies.com.

Comme Ca celebrates Child in three different ways. First, at their "block party," 3-7 p.m. Sunday, they'll serve four dishes inspired by Child's classic French recipes (each $7): roasted asparagus with hollandaise sauce; garlic sausage en croute, brioche, fried egg; vitello tonnato, sweetbreads, sauce au thon; and potato-Gruyere croquettes. They'll also have a 200-pound block of ice that bartenders will chip away at for three special cocktails ($5). Second, on Aug. 14-15 they'll offer a five-course tasting menu ($65/person; dinner only) featuring gravlax canapes, vichyssoise, crab-stuffed artichoke bottoms, lobster Thermidor, beef Wellington and berry crepes. And finally, for those with fat wallets, they'll celebrate by opening three First Growth Bordeaux from the 1997 vintage. Chateau Lafite-Rothschild, Chateau Latour and Chateau Mouton-Rothschild will all be available by taste (3 oz.), glass, carafe and bottle -- all at a discount. ($210/bottle). Wines will be available Aug. 9-15. 8479 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood. (323) 782-1104, www.commecarestaurant.com.

-- Elina Shatkin

Photo: Meryl Streep portrays Julia Child in a scene from "Julie & Julia." Credit: Jonathan Wenk / Associated Press

Sampler Platter: Classic Julia Child, CandyCots, bacon cheddar, insane sandwiches and amazing food art


Regarding the bacon cheddar cheese in the photo, all we can say is: Why didn't someone think of this sooner? And now, a dose of food news to kick off your week.

-- Elina Shatkin

Photo: Rob Takata / For The Times

Sampler Platter: Brain tacos, badly named drinks, 48 hours in Baja

--Elina Shatkin


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Daily Dish is written by Times staff writers.