Sunday, March 18, 2018

Wine lovers listen up, Bev Mo's first 5 cent sale of the year is happening now

Discount wine and booze chain spring sale starts now

Patti Pietschmann

Wine lovers will leap at this sale. We're talking the launch of Bev Mo's first "5-Cent Wine Event" of the year (March 20-April 6)  with more than 400 discounted wines-- record number for the semi-annual event. The spring edition of the "5-Cent Wine Event" will feature more than 70 new wines, including a number of 90+ rated award-winning labels, exclusive items and limited edition bottles.  How it works is you buy one bottle for full price and get a second for a nickle (select brands). 

Okay here's my thing. While I love Bev Mo, I often find lower prices at my local Ralphs on wines (which offers 30% off when you buy six bottles and once in awhile an extra 10% discount off that). However  this 5 cent sale and when we get discount coupons in the mail from Bev Mo (we are club members, which is free to join). But you can get more for your booze bucks if you know when to shop at Bev Mo and also sign up with them as a club member.

"We're heading into our 11th year of this ever-popular event, and this year's first one is likely to be our best to date," said Brian Bowden, head of merchandising at BevMo!  "It's a record number of wines being offered, and it marks the most 90+-rated wines we've ever featured.  What a great opportunity to save, stock up, or savor something new."
Bowden mentioned a few must-have bottles that are new to the sale, and should make the list of any wine lover looking to take advantage of the "5-Cent Event."  These include:
  • 2016 Matchbook Chardonnay – 92 Pts. from Wine Enthusiast. The Matchbook Dunnigan Hills Chardonnay hits all the marks with the 2016 vintage.
  • An exciting limited edition selection is the Wild Ridge 2014 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir. Grown on a small vineyard on the western edge of the Sonoma Coast, this wine offers layers of black fruit with notes of spice and tea-like flavors, silky tannins, well balanced with a very long elegant finish.
  • A favorite among the wine team at BevMo! is the Bonny Doon "A Proper Claret." A fun wine to enjoy now, this wine actually has seven different varietals in the final blend.

  For more information, visit

Thursday, March 15, 2018

LA theater takes a humorous look at ICE and the current immigration debacle

Sounds like a fun production albeit close to the heart of  many Angelenos

Patti Pietschmann

24th Street Theatre explores immigration issues
with bilingual, humorous play for families

The play takes a bilingual, humorous journey in search of what it means to be “American.” 

The main characters are a pair of baseball players from Sinaloa, Mexico who arrive in the U.S. with big dreams... but no documents. Armed with their Tia's famous salsa recipe, the two guys  works day and night to make their taco truck the “Uncle Sam” of mobile restaurants. Will a contest to be “the most American food truck” at Dodger Stadium for the 4th of July prove to Immigration and Customs Enforcement that they belong? For adults and kids 8 and up.

• Written by Leon Martell
• Directed by Debbie Devine
• Starring Jesús Castaños-ChimaTony Duran, Davitt Felder
• Commissioned and presented by 24th Street Theatre

Previews: April 7–April 15
Performances: April 21–June 10:
• Saturdays at 3 p.m.: Apr 21 (opening), 28; May 5, 12, 19; June 2, 9 (dark Apr 7, Apr 14, May 26)
• Saturdays at 7:30 p.m.: Apr 7, 14 (previews), Apr 21 (opening), 28; May 5, 12, 19; June 2, 9 (dark May 26)
• Sundays at 3 p.m.: Apr 8, 15 (previews), Apr 22, 29; May 6, 13, 20; June 3, 10 (dark Apr 1 and May 27)

24th Street Theatre
1117 West 24th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90007-1725

Call (213) 745-6516 or go to  or and  Twitter @24thST

Da price
• Adults: $24 (except May 20)
• Under 18: $10 (except May 20)
• Seniors, Students and Teachers: $15 (except May 20)
• Preview tickets: $15
• North University Park residents (with ID): $2.40 (except May 20)
• Sunday, May 20 ONLY (gala fundraiser): $240


Secure lot on the southwest corner of 24th and Hoover: $5

Monday, February 26, 2018

Largest LGBTQ+ archives ever go on display in WeHo in March

Ground breaking exhibition traces the progression of AIDS from its genesis until today
Patti Pietschmann


Lost & Found: Safer Sex Activisim",  culled from the largest LGBTQ+ archives in the world (at USC's ONE Archives Foundation), will showcase iconic, rare, and never-before-seen works at the ONE Gallery in West Hollywood from March 17 to June 24, 2018. The inaugural exhibition examines thirty years of compelling safer sex and harm-reduction activism, then and now.
The groundbreaking visual examples of safer sex activism reflect the height of the AIDS crisis in the 1980s and 1990s  and the widespread public perception linking AIDS to gay men and intravenous drug users.  Lost & Found  is designed to  reveal how activists sought to educate varying publics about the pervasive epidemic.  The exhibition will provoke the question, "What impact did safer sex activism have in the past and what is its impact today on HIV prevention"?
 HIV-infection continues to be prevalent in 2018, especially within communities of color. Lost & Found seeks to remember safer sex activism of the past, calling attention not only to extraordinary lives and voices that have been lost, but to knowledge and resources that have been found-which can again inspire, inform, educate, and empower the public.  The exhibition highlights nearly 100 objects and iconic wsorks of the AIDS  crisis through  posters, comics, brochures, videos, PSAs, and safer sex and clean needle kits, among other archival items. These novel and accessible forms reveal how activists and educators sought to disseminate information across cultural, economic, linguistic, and class divisions. You will see  Gran Fury's Kissing Doesn't Kill: Greed and Indifference Do alongside many rare items that have never been publicly presented.  There will also be posters produced in the 1990s by the Oakland-based group AIDS Project of the East Bay, including one featuring poet Essex Hemphill; needle exchange kits from Clean Needles Now (CNN), a Los Angeles grassroots organization founded in the 1990s; and a series of explicit posters produced by Color Coded, a collaboration between Gay Men of Color Consortium, Los Angeles (GMOCC) and the Los Angeles Center for Photographic Studies (LACPS).  The Gay Men's Health Crisis (GMHC), founded in 1982 and then the largest AIDS services organization, is represented by Safer Sex Shorts (1989-90), an imaginative erotic safer sex video intended to reach an at-risk audiences. 

The  focus is to connect historical works to the ongoing AIDS crisis through contemporary artist and activist projects like the Play Smart condom trading card packets produced by the New York-based organization Visual AIDS featuring contemporary artists such as Kia Labejia, L.J. Roberts, and Ben Cuevas.            

Lost & Found is co-curated by David Evans Frantz, curator at ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives at the USC Libraries and co-curator of the recent exhibition Axis Mundo: Queer Networks in Chicano L.A., and independent curator Hannah Grossman.
Neal Baer, M.D., a consultant in presenting Lost & Found, hopes to draw attention to the dire infection rates still prevalent in Los Angeles.  Shocking data from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health shows that two out of five African American men who have sex with men (MSM) in L.A. are HIV positive; for Latino MSM, one in five is positive; and one in ten Caucasian MSM is positive.  For decades, the prescription for life was tied to two lines of defense: abstinence or condoms.  Even today, with significant health advances to prolong life and prevent infection with medication, many HIV positive people are not in treatment, and young people of color are still being infected at high rates. Baer says, "This show puts the microscope on historical documents and contemporary efforts that illuminate an urgency that still exists."                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  
Lost & Found: Safer Sex Activism is organized by the ONE Archives Foundation utilizing the unique holdings of ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives at the USC Libraries, the largest LGBTQ archive in the world. Generous support is provided by The Calamus Foundation of New York, Inc.  

ONE Gallery is located at  626 North Robertson Boulevard  in West Hollywood, CA; there is metered parking on Robertson Boulevard  and  at public lots.   For more information click on

Monday, February 19, 2018

10 ways to act like a millennial even if you're not

A catered/coveted  generation acts like they own, you an too
Patti Pietschmann

By now, unless your head's buried in the sand, you know that people between the ages of around 20 to 35 are the most sought after, catered to, coddled generation ever.  And sometimes if you aren't a member of this exclusive cadre you are ignored and left in the dust.  Well, there are some ways you can fudge your way into looking like you belong to M-Gen. Here's 10 of them:

1.  Always have your iPhone out and keep looking down at it texting.
2.  Take off the front plate of your vehicle. It's not legal, but it seems that Gen-M's get away with it.
3.  Ignore rules of the road such as no U-turns, no left turn,etc. and speed through red lights (not a really good idea as you can get a ticket or into an accident). Somehow G-Ms manage this often.
4.  Take  your mobile devices everywhere: in elevators, to restaurants, movies, plays etc. Never let them out of your sight.
5.   Live at home with your parents, if they'll let you, and it seems most will these days.
6.  Dress scantily even in cold weather and be sure, if you're a woman to wear tops with lots of straps in the back.
7.   Never hold the door open for another person. (Very rude, but then so many Gen-Ms do this, probably because they are too busy texting to notice.
8.  Always zoom past the car in front of you to get ahead sooner. I am not really recommending this, but it is the how Gen-Ms tend to handle the roads.
9.  Never say thank you, it's so de classe. 
10. Own it. Think you're the best, better than all the rest.

Now this is not a recommendation to actually behave in any of the above ways. It's  tongue in cheek and just pointing out how so many of most beloved generation ever acts. It's also food for thought because how can we not deplore these traits and why aren't parents (or haven't they) taught their children manners and graciousness.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Mendocino makes magic for wine thirsty travelers and foodies

The California area offers food and wine lovers a full calendar of choices from April to January and beyond
Patti Pietschmann

Looking for a wine and food soaked spring break? Think Mendocino, California.  Starting on April 7 you can sink your teeth into and quench your thirst at The Fifth Annual Sparkling Wine Festival. 

This  stellar event showcases Mendocino County's renowned bubblies.   Terra Sávia Winery in Hopland, set on a working olive oil ranch is offering wines paired with delicious tastes of salmon, oysters, pates and canapes.
On April 28, The 22nd Annual Legendary Boonville Beer Festival kicks off with a brewfest fit for kings at Anderson Valley Brewing Company. Craft beers from dozens of breweries from San Diego to Portland pour suds all afternoon at the Mendocino County Fairgrounds. Food and music round out the day. Boonville, Calif.

Then on the 5th and 6th of May it's Spring Wine Weekend at Destination Hopland, set at the gateway of Mendocino County along the Inspiration Highway, is the locale for this annual tasting event. Browse the quaint town and enjoy a bevy of local varietals paired with food and entertainment. 

May 19-20 the Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival kicks off with tasting of the region’s world class Pinot Noir wines. Set deep in the rustic redwoods of Camp Navarro in Anderson Valley, the event includes a grand tasting, technical conference, scrumptious food pairings and winemaker dinners throughout the valley.  
Moving into summer, on July 7 it th e world’s Largest Salmon BBQ
in scenic Noyo Harbor in Fort Bragg. The s annual event spotlights the region’s rich salmon haul with all proceeds directed to improve salmon populations on the Northern California coast. Enjoy grilled salmon and all the fixings to benefit Salmon.

Wait, there's more from July to August 
 July 21–22 Anderson Valley Barrel Tasting
Glass in hand explore the Anderson Valley AVA in all its summer glory; events and tasting throughout the region from Boonville to the Deep End.
Brings all things blackberry along with arts and crafts booths, blackberry delicacies, Mendocino County wine tasting and children’s 

See  you in September at the Beer, Bison and Bluegrass festival; the Seafood and Harbor Fest (Sept. 2)   
 September 14–15, 2018 - Winesong Charity Auction  and Tasting (Sept. 14 and 15) at the Botanical Gardens in Fort Bragg and even more come October until the end of the year. Want to know what's  happening then? Click on .

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Hollywood Hotel staging Oscar viewing party/contest

Get your Oscar night kicks at Route 66 Bar and Lounge 
at the iconic Hollywood Hotel

Patti Pietschmann

What's a more fitting way to
watch Hollywood's biggest night than at an iconic tinsel town hotel. The historic property has a new bar called Route 66 and it's opening it up for a gala star struck evening.

You can go with your friends and even try to win an overnight stay.

Here's the deal

The Route 66 Academy Awards Viewing Party & Travel Package will include the following for visitors, overnight guests and locals seeking a lively way to celebrate Hollywood’s most anticipated night of the year at the closest Hollywood hotel to Route 66:

· Special cocktails themed to match the glamour of Tinseltown’s hottest awards show and the 2018 Oscar-nominated films

· Prizes for the two attendees with the most posts to social media channels using #hollywoodhotel66 (Twitter, Facebook and Instagram) during the event, including a complimentary overnight stay at Hollywood Hotel for the first-place winner and $50 credit toward the second-place winner’s bar tab on that night

· Uber credit for guests who book an overnight stay and register with The Guestbook

· Oscar-themed décor and goodie bags, from a red-carpet greeting and floor-to-ceiling décor to take-home items for every guest to remember the evening

You can book an overnight stay at Hollywood Hotel’s website and enter to win your vist, that includes complimentary cocktails by clicking the Facebook page. Additional entries can be obtained through engagement with the hotel’s Instagram and Twitter pages.

The party takes place March 4, from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Reserve your space at Reservations encouraged but not required. Reservations for an overnight stay at Hollywood Hotel can be made at

Enter the social media contest for a chance to win two seats at the Academy Awards Viewing Party and one specialty cocktail per person, and a room at the inn: 

1. Follow the hotel’s Facebook page where the contest will be primarily hosted, with bonus entries given for following the Instagram and/or Twitter pages. Contest announcements and details will be shared on all pages.

2. Participate in the Facebook contest by following the page and commenting on the contest post per post instructions by February 26. Additional entries granted for following and commenting on the hotel’s Instagram and Twitter pages.

*Based on hotel availability. Can be redeemed at any time between March 2018 through March 2021.

Two winners will be selected at random from qualifying entries and will be contacted to select their preferred date and room type. Each package can accommodate up to two guests total.

 The hotel is located at 1160 Vermont Ave., Hollywood, CA 90029.

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Retro best in Los Angeles according to Rick Dees

Disco Duck creator/exceptional DJ/LA talent tells his best in 2007
Patti Pietschmann

The year was 2007 and I was  updating the ACCESS Guide to Los Angeles  (Harper Collins publisher).  I asked Rick Dees, the creator of the all time hit, Disco Duck, dessert cookbook author, America's Weekly Top 40, TV/Radio personality and entrepreneur to give us his favorite LA haunts.  Some may be way gone by now. But here's what the
What Rick Dees loved in 2007:

Best Cakes:
Aroma Cafe
4360 Tujunga Ave.
Studio City, California 91604
Ph: (818) 508-0677

Best dinner: dinner at the BelAir Hotel
BelAir Hotel
701 Stone Canyon Road
Los Angeles, CA  90077
Ph: (310) 472-1211

Best coffee, hands down:
Beachtown Roasters
Long Beach, CA
Ph: (562) 608-8542

Best bagels - hot, fresh, home made every morning by 5am at Bake It Again Sam
Bake It Again Sam
4007 W Riverside Drive
Burbank, CA 91505
Ph: (818) 846-7118 

Best Homemade Cookies (Chocolate Oatmeal Raisin among others), and homemade Peach Cobbler ...EVER!
Dees Studios on Riverside Drive
3601 West Olive Ave.
Burbank, CA  91505
Ph: (800) 742-5333

Best Mexican Restaurant in the Valley:
Don Cuco's
3911 Riverside Drive
Toluca Lake, CA 91505
Ph: (818) 842-1123

Best Pancakes:
12036 Ventura Blvd.
Studio City, CA91604
Ph: (818) 766-4437

Best Steak: the Filet at Lakeside Golf Club of Hollywood
Lakeside Golf Club of Hollywood
4500 Lakeside Drive
Burbank, CA 91505

Best High Tea:
Ritz Carlton in Pasadena
1401 South Oak Knoll Avenue
Pasadena, California 91106 
Ph: (626) 568-3900

Best Tea Shop:
Rose Tree Cottage
828 E California Blvd
Pasadena, CA 91106
Ph: (626) 793-3337

Best hot dogs - Pink's in Hollywood
709 N La Brea Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90038
Ph: (323) 931-4223

Best Salad: the Chopped Salad at La Loggia
La Loggia Ristorante
11814 Ventura Blvd
Studio City, CA 91604-2617
Ph: (818) 985-9222

Best shoe repair and best keys made (look for the big red shoe car that's parked out front) - Victor's Shoe Repair
Victor's Shoe Repair
3810 W. Verdugo Avenue
Burbank, CA  91505
Ph: (818) 845-4213

Best News Stand - World Book & News on Cahuengua in Hollywood
World Book & News
1652 N Cahuenga Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90028
Ph: 323-465-4352
Ph: 323-465-4352

Any of things ring a bell? Let us know.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Naked passenger causes chaos, a hamster as emotional support pet?

 Ripped from the headlines

Patti Pietschmann

Flying is fearsome enough without having to deal with passengers trying to bring peacocks and hamsters on board as ‘support pets’ and others stripping naked  on a flight. Give us a break. It's gotten out of control.  And then there's the consequences of erratic actions such as dragging passengers off  planes, punching them, gagging and more alleged reactions to situations.
Yep, according today’s Internet news releases, a college student flushed her pet hamster down a toilet after Spirit Airlines wouldn't let her fly with the animal, according to her attorney. She says the airline suggested she pull the plug on Pebbles. But also said the airline initially said she could bring the rodent on board.
Spirit has denied that one of its employees suggested that she flush the hamster.
Next, during an Alaska Airlines flight to Seattle a passenger locked himself in the bathroom, took off all his clothes, and refused to follow crew instructions.
Kate Danyluk, a passenger on the flight, told The Associated Press she knew something was wrong because the flight attendants kept going back and forth in the aisles and had put on rubber gloves.
"Alaska Airlines flight 146 from Anchorage to Seattle returned to Anchorage due to a passenger not following flight attendant's instructions. While no emergency was declared, the decision was made to return to Anchorage," Alaska Airlines spokesman Tim Thompson said in an email.Then there was the incident a week or so ago when a women claimed she had to travel with her peacock which sounds like poppy cock to this frequent flyer.

Give me a break.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Delta Sky Club guests getting a taste of Paris pastry from Pierre Herme

Mouth-watering macaroons and other Pierre Herme creations on sale now at Delta's JFK Sky Club

Patti Pietschmann

Planning on spending some time in the Delta Sky Club at JFK Terminal 4 this month? If so you're in for a treat from the World's Best Pastry Chef in 2016 by the World's 50 Best Restaurants, Pierre Hermé.  Passengers using the lounge and cash in miles or use plastic to buy by his iconic macarons and chocolates at thePierre Hermé Paris. "Pierre Hermé is a remarkable pastry chef and visionary culinary artist," said Claude Roussel, managing director – Delta Sky Club. "Partnering with him to bring his macarons and chocolates to our guests at the JFK Delta Sky Club is part of our commitment to connect our guests with unique experiences and incredible culinary offerings at Delta Sky Club."

The pastries, shipped directly from Paris, are available in varieties such as:

  • Infiniment Chocolat - Pure Origin Brazilian Dark Chocolate 
  • Infiniment Caramel - Salted Butter Caramel 
  • Infiniment Praliné Noisette - Hazelnut Praline & Crispy Praline 
  • Mogador - Milk Chocolate and Passion Fruit 
  • Ispahan - Rose, Litchi, & Raspberry pastry-making with his creativity, fresh approach and passion. 

While most travelers would probably prefer lower fares, easier upgrades and more comfortable coach seats, the  availability  Pierre Hermé creations at JFK Delta Sky Club is one of  Delta's latest attempts to  enhance its Delta Sky Club locations across the network. Over the past 18 months, Delta debuted renovated clubs at Newark Liberty International Airport and Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, expanded the Delta Sky Club at Raleigh-Durham International Airport, and opened new flagship clubs at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA), which features local, seasonal fare from renowned chef Ethan Stowell. Delta also unveiled Asanda Spa Lounges at ATL, SEA and JFK. In the past several months, Delta Sky Club at SEA took home three industry awards, including the coveted International Yacht and Aviation Award in the Airport Lounge category.

To learn more about this new offering, visit the Delta Sky Club website.

Monday, February 5, 2018

Political punditing pops up on stage at Atwater Village Theatre

Three weeks of 14 short play by writers voicing political views
A Diva approved night out

One Year Later — a must see for anyone interested in our political situation. The series  features 14 short plays by writers from across the country that explore fhe sad (my word) state of  our nation now and in the last year.  

This is a no effort night out. Just head over to Atwater Village Theatre, which is creating a cozy, speakeasy setting where you  can arrive early or stay late to have a drink and a chat with the cast and fellow audience members.

• Sunset in Chappaqua by Myra Slotnick, directed by Chris Cappiello — When Laine convinces her partner Constance to spend Thanksgiving hiking in the woods around Chappaqua, rare birds are not the only thing she is hoping to encounter.

• The Trouble with Cashews by David MacGregor, directed by Amanda Weier — A 4th of July gathering presents siblings with a unique opportunity to save the world.

• Elevator Repair by Steve Apostolina, directed by Judith Scarpone —  A man and his brother-in-law try to hash out their differences during an elevator repair. Buttons will be pushed.

• The Contributor written and directed by Ron West — Politics divides a family. Art unites it. Sort of.

• Here to Serve You by Barbara Lindsay, directed by George Caleodis — Airport security runs amok when two weary travelers find a lone shoe on the terminal floor.

• I Saw What You Said by Steven Korbar, directed by Martha Demson — Two women who've had a fight on social media run into each other at their local grocery store.

• Dreaming by Diana Burbano, directed by Laura James — an intimate and poignant look at the lives of a mother, living in Mexico but hoping to return to the U.S., and her daughter, a DACA recipient living in the U.S. who is facing deportation.

• Boxes by Jen Huszcza, directed by Jan Munroe — Anthropomorphized boxes tell a timeless tale about bullying. Performed without words.

• Fake by Jen Huszcza, directed by Barbara Schofield — Somewhere in the not too distant future, in a world where the Real has been, somehow, lost--or thrown away--a lonely woman searches for the courage to go out and find it.

• Razing the Statue by Marilynn Barner Anselmi, directed by Amanda Weier — A confused Confederate statue finds himself in a scrap yard.

• Darlene's Resistance Monologue by Jonathan Joy, directed by Martha Demson — A straightforward young woman from a small town in West Virginia discovers what it means to “Resist” and “Stay Woke.”

• Changing Hats by Abigail C.K. Lill, directed by Amanda Weier — Barney has just graduated from the college where he’s worked as a janitor for decades; who will change the toilet paper during the post-graduation reception?

• Empire Dreamswritten and performed by Caroline Klidonas, directed by Barbara Schofield, with choreography by Tony Testa — A rousing anthem that bluntly calls out our current socio-political climate, urging audiences to continue waking up from the seductive delusion of the “American Dream” in order to continue building and fighting for a world that is inclusive of all.

• 1 in 5 by Lane Allison and Company, directed by Lane Allison — No matter their age, ethnicity, size, or occupation, women play Russian Roulette with their lives everyday.

Those who get it on stage: 

• The Acting Ensemble: Lane AllisonJohn BozemanSandra Kate BurckGeorge CaleodisRiley ChandlerBrooke ClendenenBruce DickinsonCaroline KlidonasRichard Knolla, Elizabeth LandeDylan MaddalenaAmy MoormanDustin MyklebustKatie May PorterJill RamezLaura RichardsonBeth RobbinsScott RobertsKenia RomeroRebecca Rosenak PhelpsSteven RoyceMandy SchneiderDionna VeremisAmanda Weier
• Scenic Design: James Spencer
• Lighting Design: Ellen Monocroussos
• Sound Design: Tim Labor
• Stage Manager: Amy Rowell
• Presented by Open Fist Theatre Company, Martha Demson, artistic director

Mark your calendar

 Feb. 16 – March 3:
• Fridays at 8 p.m.: Feb. 16. Feb. 23 and March 2
• Saturdays at 8 p.m.: Feb. 17, Feb. 24 and March 3
• Sundays at 7 p.m.: Feb. 18 and Feb. 25
(Doors open one hour prior to show time so you can enjoy our relaxed, speakeasy setting.)

Where to go 

Atwater Village Theatre, 3269 Casitas Avenue, Los Angeles, (there is free  parking in the Atwater Xing lot one block south of the theater).

Tickets are $25 at

Oh no Chef Mavro is sold out for Valentine's Day but....

What a pity but don't fret young lovers there are options.....
Patti Pietschmann (a big fan of Chef Mavro)

Romance is always in the air at this intimate, candle-lit eatery outside Waikiki that owned and operated by one of the top island chefs, George Mavro

(Okay so it sold out for February 14 
 but get your mojo in gear a day earlier on Feb. 13 or do an apres Valentine's Day dinner on from Feb. 15 to 17th)
Chef's Romance Menu (5 courses $125) OR Grand Tasting ($185)
 both include Poached Shigoku Oyster and Valentine's Waialua Chocolate Dessert

Listen to Chef Mavro talk food (he's a delight to hear)
with Melbourne journalist Graeme Kemlo @travelwordsmith
(recorded a few days ago)
Chef Mavro Restaurant, 1969 S. King St., Honolulu, HI 96826

Read more of my pieces on this fabulous restaurant such as

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Eat, sleep, play at the trendy Orlando Hotel in West Hollywood

A little urban-style boutique hotel that delivers

By Patti Pietschmann
The Branzino rocks (photo by Richard Pietschmann)
Eat  at Cleo, the hip hotel’s millennial-centric, Mediterranean-style restaurant
Suite tub (photo by Richard Pietshmann)
Sleep in a deluxe suite with a heavenly bathtub and balcony.
Courtesy SBE

Play by the rooftop pool.

Nice fitness room to stay in shape (Patti Pietschmann)

The charming, boutique hotel sits smack in the hip and happening area of West 3rd. Street in Los Angeles, steps from shops and night life.  It’s ideal for visitors and even residents who just want to get out of the house for a night or two (and many do).

But let’s start with the restaurant where we dined royally last night. It was quite surprising to find an urban eatery that seemly was transported west from New York. There was definitely a buzz as lots of young couples and groups of millennials ate, drank and made merry. Below are some of the amazing appetizers created by the talented chefs:

We were hosted for the meal and served samplings from the menu from which my highlight was a perfectly prepared charcoal-grilled branzino with just the right amount of spice with fresh tomatos, nicoise olives and Calabrian chili. Cleo’s cuisine is created by from executive  chef Danny Elmaleh who has infused much of his Israeli-Japanese heritage into dishes that, as he puts it, “celebrate ingredients and cultures of the eastern and southern Mediterranean.”

Most of the crowd there last night began their meal with the restaurant’s signature cocktails but of course the Diva did her big, buttery Ferrari-Carano Chardonnay.

 Creative items (shown above and photographed by Richard and Patti) on chef’s list include brussels sprouts, spicy cigars, babaganoush and crispy artichoke hummus served with yummy fresh baked laffa bread, tagines, kebabs and octopus.  There’s also Wagyu flat iron steak and dishes  such as  duck matzo ball soup, meatball tagine with soft egg, tomato, squash and piquillo peppers.
 And for a happy ending
Desserts to diet for 
Cleo Third Street appeals to both your appetite and  aesthetic senses with a vibrant decor  of rich earth tones accentuated by grand artwork and a giant seven-foot mirrored ball hanging over the outdoor that reflects back  inside.  A custom mural by popular LA street artist Cryptik, titled  'FACING EAST’ highlights the room.  If you're looking for a romantic, albeit noisy spot, for Valentine's Day, this is it (book a booth or a table on the patio). Have friends coming to visit, take them there and share all the small plates at a communal table. It's also open for lunch and weekend brunch.

The Orlando Hotel has surprisingly affordable rates that include daily breakfast, WiFi, parking,use of a fitness room and rooftop pool and a very cordial staff.
Now for your Valentine's Day moment of Zen

The Orlando is offering a “Who Needs a Guy,” Girlfriend’s Shopping & PJ Party Valentine’s Getaway for Four priced starting at $650 for a deluxe king and connecting queen – a great value at $162.50 per girlfriend – and  $899 for a suite and connecting room.  Additional nights are $450 and $650 respectively.   The package can be bookedonline or by calling 1-800.62.HOTEL.

The deal comes with:
    • One night’s accommodation for up to four friends in a two-bedroom suite.
    • Four bespoke cocktails at Cleo -- with names like “A Night in Marrakesh.” 
    • 15% discount at Bed Head Pajamas – with an array of themes like “Champagne & Strawberries,” “Sweet Tooth” and “Bold Strokes.”
    • In-room Beauty Goodie Bag with Face Masks from Credo Organic Beauty & Samples of the top three most popular scents from  Le Labo Perfume  plus a certify for 15% off a purchase.
    • Four, One-Hour Bar Method Classes
    • Four, $50  gift certificates for Talisman Necklaces at Pyrrha

The Who Needs a Guy Val Day Gal Pal package can be booked online or by calling
800-624-6835 and is available Feb. 1 to Feb 28, 201