01/17 What's Cookin' Today
Jo Diaz Of Oregon Pinot Gris Marketing Group Talks To Us About Their Recent Launch
This select few Oregon Pinot Gris wineries have banded together, not to have meetings and decided who, what, when, and where. No siree... This one is solely created with the idea that Oregon needs to be known for more than Pinot Noir. And, since Pinot Gris is the second largest wine grape varietal grown in Oregon, it makes sense to begin with this, the most obvious of varieties. Yes, Oregon grows many fabulous varieties, like Riesling and Gewurztraminer; but they're less likely (due to their eclectic flavors) to cause a popularity swing. Pinot Gris is already on the rise for being more mainstream and already enjoyed by many, many wine consumers. This group's purpose, or mission if you will, is for raising awareness that Oregon grows more than Pinot Noir, as they take on the second most popular grape to be grown in their great state of Oregon... Pinot Gris. They're also about showing the diversity and complexity of what Oregon has to offer. In the next year, we plan to shed a lot of light on this versatile-with-food-friendly variety.
Doug MacKenzie, Director of Communications Of The GREATER PHOENIX CONVENTION & VISITORS BUREAU Talks To Us About What Pheonix has in Store
“Celebrate the Arizona Experience,” has been a year-long commemoration with activities and events culminating with “Happy Birthday Arizona!” on Arizona’s official centennial date. This day long series of events and commemorations will happen on Arizona’s 100th Statehood Day – Tuesday, February 14, 2012. Year-long events include “Centennial Best Fest”- a “Best of Arizona” series of festivals to honor the state’s diverse culture, art and more - as well as signature projects in Phoenix including Arizona Centennial Museum, an interactive museum showcasing the past, present and future of Arizona; and Washington Street being named as Centennial Way highlighting many of the historical elements and buildings along the path. CityScape is now home to the downtown Phoenix central business district’s first electric car charging station with the installation of an NRG Energy eVgosm system in the underground parking garage at One E. Washington Street. The charging station will allow up to two electric vehicles to be charged at once. The 240-volt charging docks can provide an electric vehicle with up to 25 miles of range for every hour of charge. An additional charging station will be installed in the west parking garage in January. CityScape is providing the charging station at no cost to electric vehicle owners. The station is part of the eVgo network which is NRG Energy’s privately funded electric vehicle charging infrastructure. Celebrate Arizona’s 100th anniversary of statehood by getting married by the Chief Justice of the Arizona Supreme Court on the steps of the State Courts Building on Valentine’s Day, February 14, 2012. All Clerks statewide are issuing licenses for this event and several of them will attend the ceremony in Phoenix. For the cost of a marriage license ($72), couples can have a wedding ceremony and be part of AZ’s history. Licenses are available to residents, non-residents and tourists alike who meet the requirements of Title 25 of Arizona’s statutes related to marriage.
Celebrity Chef Celestino Drago Talks With Us About The 23rd Annual Culinary Evening with the California Winemasters
Chef Celestino Drago has played an integral role in the ever-evolving dining scene in Los Angeles for over two decades. Hailing from Sicily, Celestino has become one of the city's and the country's most lauded Italian chefs, with honors ranging from Food & Wine Magazine selecting him as a “Best New Chef” to being an invited guest chef at the James Beard House in New York on multiple occasions. From his affable demeanor to his inventive and delicious takes on Italian fare, Chef Celestino Drago has helped lay the groundwork for Italian cuisine in America today. Before launching his restaurant empire in Southern California, Celestino attended mechanical school in Italy while simultaneously working at a restaurant in the city of Pisa called Pierino. It was there that realized he “loved everything about the restaurant business.” Recognizing his culinary potential, the chef at Pierino worked closely with him and, in just three short years, Celestino took over as chef. In 1979, Celestino was hired as chef at Los Angeles Italian restaurant, Orlando Orsini, prompting him to leave Italy to embark upon a new culinary career in the United States. After working at Orlando Orsini, Celestino worked at Spectrum Foods before opening his first restaurant, Celestino, in Beverly Hills. After receiving high praise, he was encouraged to open another restaurant, Drago, on bustling Wilshire Boulevard in Santa Monica. Drago was met with rave reviews and has consistently been rated in the top 5 Italian restaurants in Los Angeles since its opening. It was Celestino's success at Drago that led to his subsequent ventures which include his artisanal bakery, Dolce Forno, the quintessential neighborhood restaurant, Enoteca Drago, the more upscale eatery, Il Pastaio, in Beverly Hills and most recently, Drago Centro in Downtown Los Angeles. Celestino’s cuisine is deeply rooted in his childhood home in Sicily and since his arrival in Los Angeles, he has been delighting diners with dishes that hearken back to his home country―dishes imbued with the heritage and authenticity of true Italian fare. Celestino has been touted as one of the Best Italian Chefs in the United States by Bon Appétit and Los Angeles Times Restaurant Critic S. Irene Virbila has called Celestino, "one of the best-known Italian restaurateurs in Southern California." Drago Ristorante is located less than one mile from the beautiful Pacific Ocean in Santa Monica and has become known as an epicenter of Italian cuisine in Southern California. Owned and operated by celebrated Chef Celestino Drago, Drago Ristorante opened in 1991 and has been wowing culinary critics, neighborhood foodies and destination travelers ever since. Envisioned by Drago and designed by renowned interior designer Brent Saville, the restaurant exudes understated, casual elegance. With daily specials reflecting seasonal changes, the restaurant has earned its spot as one of the city's favorite dining destinations
Michael McCarty, Owner of "Michael's Santa Monica", Talks About His participation in the month long California Restaurant Month.
Michael McCarty opened Michael's Santa Monica in 1979, at the age of 25. An instant success, it remains one of the most acclaimed and popular restaurants in the United States, as has the New York branch of Michael's which opened in midtown Manhattan in 1989. From the beginning, Michael and his team have dedicated themselves to offering their guests the finest food and wine, presented with casual yet impeccable service in rooms—and, at Santa Monica, a legendary garden patio—filled with modern art treasures. An American restaurant, Michael's is renowned for developing a classic contemporary cuisine that constantly evolves with new ideas and ingredients. Wine aficionados and beginners alike will find a world of outstanding, intriguing selections on the award-winning wine list, which includes more than eight hundred labels from California, France, Italy, and other wine-growing regions—as well as the latest vintages from The Malibu Vineyard, McCarty’s own winery featuring grapes grown on the hillsides surrounding his Pacific-view Malibu home. Michael was raised in Briarcliff Manor, New York and Rockford, Illinois. His parents' frequent parties and array of great friends gave him an early appreciation for stylish hospitality and good American food. He attended the Hill School in Pottstown, Pennsylvania, and lived in Rennes, France for a year as part of the Andover-Exeter School Year Abroad program, during which he experienced for the first time the artistry, quality, and joie de vivre of French dining. He went on to study cooking, wines, and hotel and restaurant management in Paris, earning diplomas from the Ecole Hoteliére de Paris, the Cordon Bleu, and the Academy du Vin. In 1974, he returned to the United States, attended Cornell's Summer Hotel Program, and earned a Bachelor of Arts in the Business and Art of Gastronomy from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Michael is married to the painter Kim McCarty, and they have two grown children, daughter Clancy and son Chas. They split their time between Malibu, California, where they live in a hillside home surrounded by The Malibu Vineyards; and an apartment high above Michael's New York. Devoted followers and patrons of the arts, the McCartys are deeply involved in organizations including the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), Los Angeles; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; the Santa Monica Museum of Art; the Whitney Museum of Art, New York; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; The Music Center/Disney Hall/Performing Arts Center of Los Angeles County; and the Armory Art Exhibition, New York.
Don't forget to "Like" CRN's Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/crntalkAnd "Like" Our What's Cookin' Today Page, too! http://www.facebook.com/whatscookintoday