Friday, January 9, 2009

Cassoulet, Confit, Clafouti... oh my!

Welcome back dear readers. I'm hoping that some of you will be able to take in the World Premiers of Arvo Part's work I mentioned in the previous post. These concerts are very unique. His music is not performed often enough. And how often do you have the opportunity to attend a World Premier? I can't tell you how lucky I feel to have been able to attend The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir and Tallinn Chamber Orchestra concert here. Conductor T├Ánu Kaljuste led these brilliant ensembles in works by Arvo Part, Erkki-Sven Tuur, and Vivaldi. I recommended the encore from this performance, "May Jesus, Thee Be Praised" from Tonu Korvits's "Kreek's Notebook" as the perfect Christmas music.

Now, for those of you in the LA area, you have been doubly blessed. Not only can you tickle your ears, you can tickle your palete. Anne Willan, founder of the prestigious Ecole de Cuisine La Varenne will be signing copies of her book The Country Cooking of France, for which she won, not one, but two 2008 James Beard Foundation Awards (for best international cookbook and best cookbook photography)! Thurdsday January 15 you'll want to head on over to Algabar where from 7:00 - 10:00 you'll be able to chat, read and even nibble. Look forward to meeting gregarious hosts Gail Baral and Robert Wain who will no doubt greet you with one of their exotic teas. Stick around for a delicious tasting of selected dishes from Anne's stunning book, which is a collection of classic French recipes beautifully photographed by France Ruffenach. I know I would. Here's what you might expect:

Gougeres and a complimentary MarTEAni
(Cheese Puffs)

Soupe Au Pistou
(Provencal Vegetable Soup with Basil)

Gambas Grille Au Sel de Mer
(Seared Prawns with Sea Salt)

Celeri Remoulade
(Celery Root in Mustard Mayonnaise)

Champignon a la Greque
(Mediterranean Marinated Mushrooms)

Tarte Aux Poires et Chocolate
(Pear and Chocolate Tart)

$115/per person including signed copy of The Country Cooking of France
$65 without book
Make reservations for this popular event ASAP
Call: 323 954 9720

If after this glorious fete you are still in the mood for a little something, why not head over to the Catalina Bar & Grill where sax player Kenny Garrett will be leading his Quartet? I can't imagine a hipper nightcap.

Many thanks to Global Around Town Los Angeles Correspondents Brooke Breton and Devon Breton-Pakozdi.


  1. now...this is serious stuff !!
    well well..wish i could go David..

    alas is a bit far !

  2. Hello Lala,

    I was just going to e mail you and then found your comment. How nice. I'm hoping you are well. Thanks for visiting me here. The symphony got great reviews. The signing/tasting are on Thursday. You can still make it! I'd love to meet you there!

    PS - I'm listening to Alicia de Larrocha playing Iberia right now. Heavenly. And I was just telling someone a half hour ago how charming you and your blog are.