Westward Ho! 4/26/12-5/8/12

Note: Westward Ho!  This posting covers 4/30- 5/1 in Los Angeles

Monday, 4/30– Slept well and up at 5:50 a.m. My body is almost on California time. While going for a walk with Alan to pick up the paper we saw Chas walking his dog. Jay & Ignacio live in West Hollywood and there are a couple of “stars” on his block. He looked just like he does on TV, except he was wearing a T-shirt and shorts with flip-flops. When we came back, Jay was up and juiced again with a mixture of fresh produce. We relaxed until lunch. Jay took us to a vegan cafe called Gratitude with very interesting raw and barely cooked foods. Alan ordered a raw key lime pie, but he wasn’t too thrilled!

After lunch we went for a tour of the homes of the stars. Above and below are some photos, but I did not think to bring a notebook to write down the people who own or owned these lovely houses in Beverly Hills. I took these from the car, so I was unable to get close-ups, even with the zoom lens. Some were very conventional looking, while others were more modern. All were quite large and lovely.

We ended the tour right near Jay & Ignacio’s neighborhood with this adorable house that looked like the witch in Hansel & Gretel found themselves. It was a house right out of a fairy tale book!  Actually, what I found most interesting was our tour guide, who is working on doing voice overs for animated movies or TV shows. He was able to impersonate any character we asked him to, like the characters from the Simpsons. We wished him well and went home to rest up for our special dinner at the Bazaar Restaurant by Jose Andres in a Beverly Hills. The food is deconstructed and then re-assembled into interesting tapas. (See information & photos below)

This was my Caprese Salad. Mozzarella was liquid inside.

I cannot describe the dishes accurately because many looked very different from what I am used to eating. I had a Caprese Salad, which usually consists of buffalo mozzarella and tomatoes. This mozzarella actually became a liquid when I put it in my mouth. I also had a mushroom dish that tasted very exotic and a small plate of quinoa with cauliflower topped with a Middle Eastern spice called harissa. Very tasty! Actually, the dishes were more like taste sensations, tripping off our tongues with unusual textures and flavors. Below are some photos I took of our dishes. The light was very dim, so I could not capture all of them.  Also, the preparation was done with an open kitchen and the chefs and assistants were all very serious about deconstructing and reconstructing the food. Quite bizarre!

Tuesday, 4/1 – Our last day in L.A. In the morning Jay took Alan to pick up the car we are renting for the restof our trip. Then he took me to the office of a non-profit ending hunger organization called Mazon, A Jewish Response to Hunger. I spoke with Michelle Stuffman and she answered many of my questions about how Mazon addresses hunger and lobbies for better nutrition for anyone on food stamps. (Last month I posted information about the Farm Bill, because Mazon is concerned with cuts to SNAP, the name for the Food Stamp Program. Will put an update in another posting.) I think this organization, small but committed, is doing a great job of helping people in need.

After lunch at a highly-decorated Indian restaurant (See photo @ left), we went back to the house and relaxed part of the afternoon, using the hot tub that Jay & Ignacio had installed a few years ago in their back yard. Then I packed. For dinner, we met my niece Jane and her boyfriend. Went back to the house and watched a Ginger Rogers/Fred Astaire movie I never saw called You Couldn’t Be Lovelier. Alan’s son & partner have a huge inventory of DVDs because they are both in the entertainment industry.

To the right are Alan & me at the Indian restaurant. Very colorful and the food was good, as well. The owner was also our waiter in a turban!

Went to bed at a decent hour, but had a restless night. Guess I am anxious to be on my way to see my daughters.

3 thoughts on “Westward Ho! 4/26/12-5/8/12

  1. Sounds like a wonderful time! I loved Gratitude restaurant too. They have one is San Francisco too. That’s where I went. Bought their cookbook too.

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