Friday, June 29, 2007

Yelp Changed My Life

I'm serious. You can look up reviews for everything from cheap Korean massage with ambiance, to restaurants, bars, night clubs, arts & entertainment, and shopping - whatever you're looking for. Great thing about it is that the reviews are written by real people - Average Joe's who write about their experiences and tell it like it is- so you get the real scoop. Also unlike some user review websites like chowhound, which can be outdated, this one has recent reviews. Reviews from the current month & year - who woulda thought? Just about every hole in the wall is listed in their database.

Textbook Definition
Yelp is a web 2.0 company that operates a social networking and user review website.

Founding Fathers
Yelp's founders, Jeremy Stoppelman and Russel Simmons, were early employees at PayPal. They received $6 million in initial funding and then an additional $10 million in their second round funding.

Seeing LA In A Whole New Way
It's peaked my interest in a lot of cool bars in LA that are off the beaten path -(like "The Prince" in K-town - I am so there!), not to mention all of the old & new establishments in my neck of the woods. Tonight for instance I'm going to check out 2 new bars within walking distance of one another on York Avenue in Highland Park that I found through Yelp (prior to going to dinner at the new southern restaurant "Larkin's" in Eagle Rock). One is called "Johnny's Bar" and the other is "Marty's." (Marty's is by the same owner of "Mia's" the sushi restaurant in Eagle Rock. The restaurant is named after his daughter Mia, and the bar is named after his son Marty.)

Good Ole U S of A
Yelp accepts reviews of any business or service in the United States. The most active cities include:
  • San Francisco, CA — offers neighborhood filtering

  • Boston, MA — offers neighborhood filtering

  • Chicago, IL — offers neighborhood filtering

  • New York, NY — offers neighborhood filtering

  • Philadelphia, PA

  • Washington, D.C.

  • Seattle, WA — offers neighborhood filtering

  • Los Angeles, CA — offers neighborhood filtering

  • San Jose, CA

  • Austin, TX

  • San Diego, CA — offers neighborhood filtering

Yelp is a great site, and has a craigslist/San Fran/community feel about it. Very cool.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

The Animals - We Gotta Get Out Of This Place

"We Gotta Get Out of This Place" was recorded in 1965. It was immensely popular among United States Armed Forces during the Vietnam War.

Déjà vu anyone?

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

German Wordplay

The Goethe-Institut (the official German cultural institute) has e-cards promoting German. If you'd like to send one to someone you know, click here.

Madonna - Holiday (1983)

This 80's song reminds me of summer.

Sunshine + 80 degree weather + driving in the car + cooling air conditioning + beautiful summer day + Madonna on the radio + holiday = a smile on my face.

Monday, June 25, 2007

The Age Of Love

I just watched the first episode of the newest reality dating show called "The Age of Love." It's like "The Bachelor", with a funky twist. The creators claim that it's a social experiment based on the question: "When it comes to falling in love, does age really matter?"

Premise of the Show
A 30 year old single bachelor (Australian tennis star Mark Philippoussis) is looking for love, but what he doesn't know is that the eligible bachelorettes are in their 40's. (One is 48 years old.) After he gets over his initial shock, (what's so great is that he doesn't hide the fact that he's shocked!) and after he gets to know the 7 women who make up the 40's group, he has to eliminate one woman. Next the show has another twist - they introduce the bachelor to 6 more eligible bachelorettes - this time they're all in their 20's. So it's 40 vs. 20 (aka "Cougars vs. Kittens".)

The show airs on NBC, Monday nights (8 PM here in LA).

The 40's Then & Now
The most fascinating aspect of the show is the women who make up the 40's group. They all look amazing, and none look their age.
Maria (Age 42) - Now Maria (in her 20's) - Then
Lynn (Age 40) - Now Lynn (in her 20's) - Then
Kelli (Age 40) - Now Kelli (Age 26) - ThenJodi (Age 46) - Now
Jodi (Age 19) - ThenJen (Age 48) - Now Jen (in her 20's) - ThenJayanne (Age 39) - Now Jayanne (Age 24) - Then Angela (Age 40) - Now
Angela (Age 28) - Then
40's vs. 20's
So the show pits the 40 year olds against the 20 year olds, as both groups of women vie for the bachelor's love and attention.
I had to laugh out loud when I saw the 2o somethings on the plane flying into LA - the music in the background was perfect - it felt like "Here comes the party!" And to hear the 20 somethings bashing the 40 somethings was classic reality TV. One girl said that the 40 year olds had no chance with their "stretch marks and sagging boobs."

But of course I'm rooting for the 40 somethings! I mean come on - they look fabulous! I don't belong to either camp as I'm in the my 30's but I always root for the underdog, and I can relate more to the 40's, as they are a bit more mature.

The 20 something girls talked a lot of trash, but then were shown being completely insecure with themselves, even crying all night long. Sheesh. I guess the perky boobs don't help there.
The bachelor thought he would have a great time with the hot 20 year olds - especially after someone suggested they hop in the jacuzzi - but then there was silence. No one said a word and it was really awkward. When interviewed, the bachelor said it was like "pulling teeth" and at that point he was wondering what the 40 year old women were doing. The 40's seemed to be the more fun group. Later the same day the bachelor went with the 40's to a roller skating disco and they dressed up in outrageous 70's outfits and had a blast.

The host is Kelly Ripa's husband - Mark Consuelos
Standing next to the 6'5" bachelor, Mark looks very tiny.

1100 Wilshire building in downtown Los Angeles.
Yes, the building that you can see off of the 110 fwy that has been abandoned for so many years.

The have the 40 year old women on the 40th floor, and the 20 year olds on the 20th floor.

In the show you see a lot of downtown LA.
Tuning in next week
I'll definitely be tuning in next week to see how the show develops.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

The Police Reunion Concert @ Dodger Stadium

The Police reunited this year for a tour to mark their 30th anniversary, (over 20 years since their 'final' split in summer 1986). The concerts coincide with Universal Music (current owners of the A&M label) re-releasing some material from the band's back catalog.

I saw them perform at a sold out Dodger Stadium last night.

Then & Now
The Police in concert - Then

The Police in concert - Now

Andy Summers, Sting, Stewart Copeland - Then

Andy Summers (age 64), guitarist- Now

Andy was wearing a stripped shirt under a blazer type jacket. When he lifted up his leg to emphasize a certain note, I couldn't help thinking the whole time, "Please don't fall. Please don't fall." At times he looked plain ridiculous - picture Tony Blair playing the guitar - and it didn't help when the camera shot him from below, at the waist up since it focused right in on his rather large gut. But at 64 years old, he can still play the guitar.

Sting (age 55), singer/bassist - Now

Sting is still hot and vital. It's quite obvious that he's never stopped performing, as he's still polished and has a great voice and presence. He was the only one of the 3 band mates who was wearing a shirt with no sleeves (which showed off his well toned arms). He gives all of us 30 and 40 somethings hope that at 55 you can still look great and be vital, vs. looking like you belong to AARP.

Stewart Copeland (age 54), drummer - Now

Stewart is still full of energy but that white hair makes him look old. He should dye his hair blond. The white hair ages him quite a bit. Next to Sting, you would think he was 15 years older, rather than 1 year younger than Sting. He wore a long sleeved outfit that looked like an Adidas type workout wear with a matching headband. That outfit was way too young for him. It's like Grandpa trying to look cool. But like I said, he still has a lot of energy, and watching him go at those drums made me think of a young Stewart Copeland.

The Ageless Sting

Sting looked so young (and still cool), that I felt bad for his 2 band mates who looked their age.

As a friend of ours put it bluntly, "There's something to that Yoga sh*t."

He even makes a receding hairline look cool with his super short blond mohawk.
This was the first concert I've seen at Dodger Stadium. I always wondered what they did with the field. In the photo above you can see that they cordoned off the main diamond, and the outfield is covered.The Foo Fighters opened for The Police. I'm not a fan, but I did like it when Dave Grohl ran out into the audience, halfway down the field, and stood on the speakers next to a porto-potty and played his guitar solo for his fans. It just felt like he was giving back to his true fans (those that couldn't afford front row tickets). It took a lot of guts to run out into the crowd like that. He sprinted back just as fast, so as to avoid any incidents. This is what Dave Grohl looks like now. The entire time he sang with his bangs covering his face. I remember when he played the drums for Nivana, and originally when he formed the Foo Fighters lots of people thought it was a joke. There was one band member named Pat Smear. He's gone now, and I haven't kept up with them, but they must be pretty big (not to mention it's an honor) to open for The Police.Dodger Stadium was filled to capacity.
Only thing I wished they would have done was have better food when they have concerts there. Even the barely edible Subway was not there and we were only left with Dodger dog fare. I don't eat beef so the 100% beef Farmer John hot dogs were not doable. Since they allow you to bring in food, next time I'll bring a gourmet picnic basket.
On a side note, we used to have season tickets to the Dodger games, but since they raised the ticket prices and we boycotted, it's been awhile since we've been back. Since then, they've redone the entrance to the lodge section. It now has a circular bar with tables and chairs (and they planted trees!). Very nice addition. Beyond that is the gated smoking area (so it's no longer in the hallway). More pics.
Last year I asked my husband what band he most wanted to see in concert and he had only one band in mind - The Police. He saw them play once years ago when they were in their prime, in a smaller, more intimate venue. So it was nice to see his dream come true, and watch him sing along to some of their songs.
For me since I'm not a die hard fan, (but I like their music all the same), it was nice to hear them perform their old songs, and see them back together again after all these years. If it wasn't for this reunion concert, I would have never seen them live, so I have that to be grateful for. As for the excitement factor though, it was pretty nil, and Sting's penchant for having the audience echo back his lyrics (or sounds) over and over and over again got old real fast.
I wouldn't see them again in a huge venue like this again, but maybe if they play in a smaller club in a more intimate setting, I might go see them again.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Charo sings "Love Will Keep Us Together" (1976)

You can't talk about "The Love Boat" without mentioning Charo. In this video she sings "Love Will Keep Us Together", taken from her 1976 television special.

Click here to watch the one and only Charo sing and dance to "The Love Boat" theme. She's introduced on the show as "April Lopez."

Friday, June 22, 2007

The Love Boat

My 2 year old daughter had an unusual request today - "Boat". She wanted to see a boat, so I quickly searched for a boat on YouTube, and lo and behold the theme song to the TV sitcom "The Love Boat" pops up. Talk about a flash from the past.

The Real Dirt On Farmer John

This documentary looks really interesting. Watch the movie trailer. It looks like a beautiful documentary.

What it's about
"It's the story about farmer John Peterson's astonishing journey from farm boy to counter-culture rebel to the son who almost lost the family farm to a beacon of today’s booming organic farming movement. The result is a tale that ebbs and flows with the fortunes of the soil and revealingly mirrors the changing American times."

How it was made
"THE REAL DIRT ON FARMER JOHN is directed by Taggart Siegel, who made the film in a most unusual way – shooting farmer John Peterson over 25-years of their evolving friendship, and using multiple media, from Super8 home movies to modern video -- allowing him to capture his alternately humorous, heartbreaking and spirited life with raw drama and intimacy."

Winner of over 30 film festivals.

"This lovingly handmade, grassroots epic has garnered fans even in the corridors of power, with former Vice President Al Gore calling it “unbelievably special,” celebrity chef Alice Waters declaring it “a charming, wonderful and important movie” and master documentarian Albert Maysles describing the film as “genuinely beautiful . . . a cause for hope.” "

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Crazy Love

The relationship between Burt and Linda Pugach (now married 33 years) is the focus of this documentary film, aptly named "Crazy Love" produced by filmmaker Dan Klores (who also made the documentary "Boys of 2nd Street Park").

Burt & Linda's story goes like this:
In 1959 Burt was a married man with a child dating Linda Riss, a 21 year old woman. When Linda discovered Burt was married, she broke off their relationship. Burt started to stalk her and do some crazy things. Then when he found out Linda was engaged to be married to another man, Burt hired some men to attack her, throwing lye in her face, blinding and disfiguring her. Burt went to jail for 14 years, during which time he corresponded with Linda. While he was in jail, although he was disbarred he still helped some murderers find loop holes in their cases and got them released from jail. He started charging for his services and sent the proceeds to Linda. When he was released in 1974, Burt and Linda resumed their relationship and married soon thereafter. They co-wrote a book in the 1970's "A Very Different Love Story".

"Crazy Love" is the craziest love story I've ever heard of. What a bunch of characters! Burt even cheated on Linda while they were married, and his mistress claimed Burt threatened to kill her. This made the headlines and there was a media frenzy surrounding it. All the while, Linda defended him and was Burt's biggest supporter. I'm not sure if this is love or insanity. Whatever the case, it's another example of how life sometimes is stranger than fiction.

Hell's Kitchen - Aaron can't stop crying

Aaron is a 48 year old Chinese retirement home chef who cracked under pressure, as a contestant on Hell's Kitchen (a reality cooking show with Chef Ramsey) and couldn't stop crying. I've never seen any grown man or woman cry like this.

He even fainted a couple of times, wanted to throw in the towel, but he stuck in there - at one point another team member saw Aaron standing around doing nothing and asked him, "Aaron what are you doing?" and Aaron's responded in all honesty with, "I'm not doing anything!"

After his last fainting spell, Aaron was rushed to the hospital and not allowed to return to the show. (I'm sure he was too much of a liability.) They claimed the doctors said he had a "dangerous medical condition" but didn't say what it was. Crazy. This is the stuff reality TV producers dream of.

Cat eats with fork, spoon & chopsticks

Thanks to Blog on a Toothpick.

This empty-nester wanted to have someone else to eat with when her kids left home - so she taught her cat how to eat with utensils at the dinner table. The cat eats her gourmet cat food with a fork, noodles with chopsticks, and ice cream with a spoon. She rates the cat's table manners as a 7 or 8 (out of 10).

I'm all for pet tricks, but this is a bit creepy.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Gui Boratto - Beautiful Life

I love this song.

This video is from the Chromophobia (album) release party. Too bad there's not a better video out there on YouTube - it's such a good dance mix (and Gui Boratto plays the guitar and keyboard on it). The intro is a tad long, but once the lyrics start it's happy happy joy joy.

Recently it was brought to my attention that I haven't been to a club in a long time. So long in fact that the question was posed, "Do you even remember what the inside of a club looks like anymore?" Hrmph! Well...not THAT long. I did go to Coachella earlier this year and I was at the Giant New Year's Eve party - doesn't that count? But yeah it's been too long.

But I would love to be on the dance floor with Gui Boratto spinning this song. Maybe there is hope for me after all.

The Arrow in FedEx

Did you ever notice there's an arrow in the FedEx logo? I never noticed until recently when it was pointed out to me. I saw that this was posted on blogs a year ago (by graphic artists and web designers), so I guess I'm a little late to the game - but it's new to me, so I thought I'd post it. I can't believe I overlooked it. It's so obvious now.In case you're having trouble seeing it, the arrow is the white space between the "E" and the "X".

Monday, June 18, 2007

Father's Day - Celebrity Children in 2032

I found this amusing video on Celebrity Smack. It's a futuristic look at celebrity children (Shiloh, Rocco, Sean & Suri) in the year 2032, created for Father's Day.

Over dinner last night Uwe and I were just discussing Tiger Woods, and how he and his wife are expecting their first child - and how we'll probably see that kid doing the whole messed up celebrity kid bit when he/she is older.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

I Love My Baby & My Baby Loves Me

Happy Father's Day 2007!

Ah, Father’s Day is nearly here; now what?


When Father’s Day rolls around annually I try to think of a unique or special gift for Dad. He’s a great guy and doesn’t need anything, but it’s nice to give him something unique. Dad claims such holidays are meaningless to him and the money is better spent on the kids. I agree in theory, but you just about have to get dear old Dad a little something.

My two youngsters aren’t yet old enough to shop for a gift and the older one usually brings me a creation from art class at daycare. My wife, Donna, gets me a gift from her and the children and two cards as well.All of that is nice, but I honestly have decided, like my own Dad, it’s better to spend money on the kids than on me. I love the gifts but children are top priority.

For example, I recently spent many sweaty, splinter-filled hours hand constructing a swing set for my dynamic duo. It was a design of my own and with some assistance and tools from my omniscient neighbor, David, the swings are a delight to the kids.

“Thank you and Mr. David for making me and my sister a swing set,” my son, Keegan, said. “I can swing real high and it’s a lot of fun.”Yes it is little man and you’re worth every single scratch and bruise I endured and obscenity I uttered while building it. Your sister, Addison, will like it too, she’s only 9 months old though.

My honest wish for Father’s Day is to be able to crawl under my 1975 Chevrolet Nova and turn a few rusty old bolts. We stay so busy with work, kids and stuff on the side that I haven’t touched it in three years and that’s a shame. That car is therapeutic, although Donna disagrees. She said it’s impossible to love something that causes me so much grief and bloody knuckles. It’s not worth much, it smells bad, leaks and doesn’t run anymore.

I asked her if she loved me and Donna said that was a crazy question. “Of course I do,” she said. “Why would you even ask me that?”

“Well it’s simple,” I said. “I’m not worth much, cause you a lot of grief, smell bad, leak and don’t run anymore. There’s the time I accidentally smashed your fingers and gave you bloody knuckles moving the refrigerator, too.”

But in the end nothing beats being a father. I never knew that loving another human this much was possible. Keegan and Addison make me smile when I’m down. They give me a reason to get out of bed in the morning and taking care of them is one of my only pure joys in life.

I now finally understand phrases such as “I love you more than life itself” and “put that down before you set the house on fire.” Without my kids those words and many others would have been only a memory from childhood and had no real meaning.

Happy Father’s Day.

To My One & Only on Father's Day

Click here to see the photo montage I put together for Uwe this Father's Day.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Belated Wine Tasting Post (Red Carpet)

Last week Uwe and I went to a wine tasting at Red Carpet (in Glendale). I just got around to writing about it.

Click here to read about our Friday night wine tasting.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Minx (2nd Visit) & one day only beef

After our wine tasting at Colorado Wine Company, we decided to go to Minx for dinner.

2nd Visit & Ahi Poke is Disappointing
This being our second visit - and I had to have the delicious Ahi Poki with smelt egg fritter starter that I had so enjoyed on our first visit. But this time it wasn't the same! Instead of a smelt egg fitter at the bottom, there was rice. What a disappointment! The dish that I loved the most was different -and not as good.

Uwe had his oysters again for an appetizer. And I lifted our beef ban (which has been going strong for a number of years now) so Uwe could try the Kobe beef with lobster roll. It was just a thin slice (think sashimi style) of beef on top of the roll. Nothing spectacular, and not worth the one day repeal of my years of giving up beef (since mad cow was detected in the US).

Uwe had the tomato & mozzarella salad. (Pretty good.)

I had the vegetable risotto. There were a couple things wrong with this dish. First off the cabbage on top drenched in an overpowering balsamic vinaigrette did not complement the dish, and was too salty. I had to push it to the side and try to keep it from contaminating my risotto. Second - they had cooked artichokes in it. Artichokes I like, but not the entire part, when it's not cooked properly. After chewing it, you were left with a mouth full of chewed up leaves, like straw - which I had to spit out. I kept trying, thinking it was just one - but every artichoke in it wasn't cooked properly. Who do they have cooking this stuff back there? Don't they taste what they're cooking?

We opted not to have dessert this time. But I did see that they still had the same gawd awful peaches with blueberry ice cream cobbler on there. Ick. Made me think of how Chef Ramsey would critique it - What on Gawd's earth were you thinking?!

Overall Review
I was so disappointed that my favorite dish was changed. The one dish that was "inspiring" isn't there anymore. How is that possible? But the worst dessert I've ever had is still on the menu. Doesn't make much sense. With the $$$ prices, I don't know if I'll be back for a 3rd time. They do have exceptional service, and you can't find another restaurant like it locally, but the food just seems to miss more often than it hits. After dinner, Uwe and I watched in slow motion as we saw our car being driven by the valet at 10:30 at night (when it's pretty dark) without turning the headlights on. Luckily there was no accident.

Friday Night Wine Tasting @ Colorado Wine Company (& Date Night)

"So what's the plan for tonight?" asked Uwe.

Date Night
See it's Friday night - our date night. After 5 years of marriage, 7 years of being together, and 2 years of being parents - we decided that we needed to have a weekly date night. (Believe it or not - We really do enjoy each other's company.) Our weekly date night started out originally with a babysitter (Jill a college student who's getting her PhD in psychology) coming over every Friday night to babysit. Recently we added Wednesday nights as well. Wednesdays we usually go to a movie, or to some event. Lately Fridays have been reserved for wine tasting and dinner afterwards.

My first impression was that Uwe was upping the ante to make it more bearable for me to stay at home with the baby. Ya know - getting me out of the house so I keep my sanity and all that good stuff. I thought "how sweet." But it's become evident that Uwe looks forward to our date nights even more than I do - and there's real meaning in that old adage - "Thank gawd it's Friday!" He likes being able to watch movies, but the main attraction is our Friday night wine tastings.

The Perks

  • Get to spend time quality one on one time with the spouse - Check!
  • Get to chat without having to entertain our toddler (and feel like we're DINKS again - dual income with no kids)- Check!
  • Get to drink wine and lots of it - Check!
  • Get to bring home numerous bottles of wine - Check! (this one is for Uwe)
Yeah it's pretty much pure bliss for us old timers.

Tonight being our Friday wine tasting night - We could have gone to a champagne tasting at Red Carpet Liquor, (taste all 6 for $37), or head back to what has become our local hangout - Colorado Wine Company for their Friday night wine tasting (taste all 5 for $15) - featuring 4 wines and a Bellini (made with Prosecco & white peaches). Doesn't that sound refreshing?! We opted for Colorado Wine Company (better ambiance and crowd).

Prior posts about both wine tasting establishments
You can read my prior posts by clicking on the links below:

I Heart Colorado Wine Company
I was happy to see that after my last post where I listed some recommendations on how to make the place nicer - the owners actually made those changes. (Added more tables and seating, and redid the ceiling to give the place more ambiance.)

Wine Tasting @ Red Carpet

Good Decision
I'm glad we chose Colorado Wine Company because we discovered a new wine that we really enjoyed. It was the first wine of tonight's tasting.

Martin Alfaro Santa Cruz Chardonnay - Golden straw color, citrus and tropical fruits, vanilla, and a hint of butterscotch. Refreshing acidity on the finish.

The owner Jen said it was a bit hit tonight (aka lots of people were buying bottles to take home).

It's a refreshing white wine that's perfect for a warm summer night (like tonight!), and you can really taste the trace of butterscotch. (Different and yummy.) Uwe and I were both surprised we liked it so much because we're both red wine lovers.

Inside Joke
After I mentioned to Uwe that I liked the wine he agreed and immediately said:
"Okay - let's buy a case."
"No, better yet - let's buy every bottle they've got in this store."
"Even better, let's buy the whole friggin store. "

These remarks had me in stitches.

It goes back to when I was pregnant and I abstained from all alcohol. Now I'm not preacher's wife, and I see no harm in having a glass of wine when you're preggers - so I didn't stop drinking because of the principle itself. But the idea of drinking made me nauseous, as did the smell. I literally couldn't stomach it. Must have been the hormones. Even after I gave birth, I couldn't drink for a long time because the hormones must have messed with my palate and wine tasted gawd awful no matter what kind. Uwe kept bringing home bottles of wine for me to taste, hoping (praying) that we'd find one that I liked so we could enjoy wine together again (after over a year of waiting). I really wanted to like it - but everything tasted so horrible, that rather than having to hold my nose to drink an expensive bottle - I just said "forget it - don't bother - it's not the wine - it's just me."

Slowly but surely I started to get my palate back (although seafood is still an issue), and I can now enjoy wine (Cheers!). So the inside joke is - anytime I say that I like a particular wine - Uwe wants to run out and buy a case for me. Tonight I said just to get one bottle - but he got 3 instead.

Recommendations Needed
With that said, in part due to the delay in my wine drinking, we still haven't purchased a wine to commemorate my daughter's birth. Something that we really need to do. Does anyone have any recommendations for a spectacular 2005 red wine (like a Syrah) that will age well? Uwe and I would like to purchase a case, so we can open the wine to celebrate on her 21st birthday (and for her to have a bottle as a keepsake).

We're also looking for a great 2001 red wine (to commemorate our wedding anniversary). Again, same thing, it needs to be able to age well.

Wolftrap - South African Wine
I also spotted a South African wine - Wolftrap, which intrigued me. It's the only bottle of wine from South Africa in the entire store. The owner, Jen said this wine is amazing.
Region: Coastal Region, Stellenbosch
Winery: Boekenhoutskloof (founded in 1776)
Type: Red wine
Grape: Syrah, Cinsault, Mourvèdre, Viognier
Vintage: 2005

Origin of the Wolftrap Label Name
It's name comes from the fact that when the Dutch moved into the area back during their colonial phase, they brought a fair amount of wolf traps in order to protect themselves. There was only one problem with this: There are no wolves in South Africa. So you have a wine so named because it pokes fun at the Dutch.

Tasting Notes
Dark red-black color with spice, bacon and wood on the nose. Smooth, smokey bacon and spice flavors overshadow subdued, mellow cherry and blackberry fruit. Dry, light mouthfeel with good structure and a black currant finish.

I Can't Wait to Open the Bottle
Of the reviews I've read online, people either love it or hate it. So it'll be interesting to see to which camp Uwe and I belong to - the lovers or haters.

Back At Home
So when we got home, I confirmed with our babysitter Jill that we'll see her again next Wed. I told her it's really nice to have date night twice a week. Jill replied that it's also nice for her and gave me a big smile. I guess she can use the extra money being a student. A win win situation. =)

Cat Stevens - Where Do The Children Play?

Before there was Yusuf Islam, there was Cat Stevens. This is a great song.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

The Roost

We decided to check out another bar near Atwater Village, in Los Feliz. Uwe said I "owed him a dive" since he agreed to check out Club Tee Gee with me.

The Roost
3100 Los Feliz Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA
We were expecting a dive but were pleasantly surprised. It's got a hypnotic red glow inside, with a popcorn machine, and decorative roosters thrown in for good measure. There were lots of hipsters & regulars here. One girl told the bartender, "I missed you! I just finished my final exams, so you'll see me here a lot more often now."

On a funny note, a couple patrons from Club Tee Gee followed us to The Roost. Uwe was pretty freaked out by that. Being as it wasn't close enough to walk and you had to drive from one location to the other. What are the odds in LA?
The bar was funky and had lots of seating. Only negative was that the bartender would stir instead of shake our cocktails, including Uwe's dirty martini. I've never seen a bartender do that before at a real bar. Also, the bartender served my cosmo in a wine glass (vs. a martini glass). Strange.
It had a funky ambiance and it's local - so we may go back if we're in the area.

Club Tee Gee

Photo by robjtak
The sign looks like "Club Tee Yee", but it shows up as "Club Tee Gee".

Club Tee Gee
3208 Glendale Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90039

After the movie tonight, it was still early, so we decided to get some cocktails in nearby Atwater Village (before returning home to relieve the babysitter).
Photo by pony ride
I drive by this place all the time during the day, (since we go to the local video store next door), and I was always curious as to what it looks like inside. The bar has been around since 1946. So I suggested we go there just to check it out. We were prepared for a dive and that's just what we got. The review says it's a hipster hangout, but we didn't see any hipsters there tonight. The place is a lot darker than in the photo above. We sat in the 2nd booth, as there weren't two open seats together at the bar (on the opposite side of the booths).

Now I can at least check it off my list, that I went there and had a drink.