It's always fun to be stuck in the middle of Sophie and Alain Gayot!


4 baked apples (cut into 8ths and bake with butter, cinnamon, and sugar on 320 deg. for 25 min)

muddle with 3/4 oz apple cider

1 oz Licor 43

2 oz Elijah Craig 12yr Bourbon

Add ice, shake long and hard

Strain into prepped cocktail glass

Garnish with fresh ground cinnamon and nutmeg on top


Dip rim of glass in caramel then coat with

a mixture of graham cracker crumbs and sugar

place in refrigerator to chill

“Raising the Bar”

It was a tough and tasty competition! Three talented bartenders belly-up to the bar for the second round in LA’s cocktail competition “Raising the Bar” at David Myers’ Comme Ca. We started with one of my favorites, the classic “Sidecar”… and after 3 rounds of stiff drinks, we happily ended with a tie breaker featuring Gin. Bartender Hector Bury of Joe’s in Venice took on Comme Ca’s Tim Loden who snapped up this month’s trophy with a Gordon’s Cup. Also, I can’t help but dream about last month’s Church and State cocktail queen Shana Street’s liquid dessert, called “Not Your Grandma’s Apple Pie”! My mouth is already watering over next month’s competition at Boa on Sunset.  Cheers!


In the romantic indoor/outdoor setting, dimly lit by candles and white lights dazzling among the trees, it is very likely that you might spot a Hollywood celeb or two sinking into one of the massive leather booths that surround the dining room. But company aside, the big star here is the food! We happily made our way through a five course meal and wine pairing. The Wagyu beef sliders were divine…So good, we asked for seconds. The classic preparation of a seared foie gras on top brioche french toast was just the way I like it. Both dishes literally melted in your mouth. And to top off the perfect dinner, we had to ask for dessert… a rich, light and airy chocolate soufflé. I was star struck!

 sophie gayot and victoria recano

For more information check out the review on Gayot.com: http://www.gayot.com/restaurants/polo-lounge-beverly-hills-ca-90210_2la00200-02.html

We were guests of Charlie’s in Malibu for my birthday dinner.  From the mouthwatering margarita to the fun fare, it was a comfortably chic spot to celebrate.  I especially loved the appetizers; tender and juicy ostrich, thick crispy crab cakes, and coconut shrimp with a sweet and spicy dipping sauce. Their selection of wines by the glass offered a variety of options for each varietal and for every budget.

Get to know ‘Charlie’ even better by visiting: http://www.gayot.com/blog/charlies-restaurant-malibu-happy-hour/ as well as http://www.charliesmalibu.com/Charlies

The Best New Chef’s dinner at the Aspen Food and Wine Classic featured the top talent from around the country. However, the team of  Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo of Animal in Los Angeles, was the beast that stole the show with their dangerously delicious BBQ pork belly sliders. They were slightly spicy and topped with a creamy, crunchy slaw. Instinctively, seconds were in order!!!

Victoria and Jenni Benzaquen

Victoria and Jenni Benzaquen