Wednesday, May 30, 2012 

Santa Barbara Wine Festival

Under the canopies by santa barbarian

Under the canopies, a photo by santa barbarian on Flickr.'s that time for the BEST of the local Wine Festivals. 
Saturday, June 30 - 2:00 - 5:00 p.m. 
alongside the tree lined banks of Mission Creek.
Buy your tickets HERE. Better hurry before they are sold out.


Alexander & Wayne
Alma Rosa
Andrew Murray Vineyards
Au Bon Climat
Arthur Earl Winery
Babcock Winery
Beckmen Vineyards
Bedford Winery
Brander Vineyard
Carina Cellars
Carr Vineyards and Winery
Cold Heave
Daniel Gehrs Wines
Dierberg & Star Lane
Estate Vineyard

Epiphany Cellars
Fiddlehead Cellars
Firestone Vineyard
Flying Goat Cellars
Foley Family Wines
Gioia Wine
Guy Riedel Wines


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Tuesday, May 29, 2012 

President John F. Kennedy

As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. - JFK

May 29, 1917 – November 22, 1963

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VINO is a local magazine focused on Paso Robles Wine County events, wineries, winemakers and the local wine community

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Monday, May 28, 2012 

Hearst Beef - Love Local

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Memorial Day

It's not about shopping the sales at the cookie cutter malls.

It's about honoring and remembering those who served, and serve, our country.

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Off well...un-leased


Looks like their space is up for rent according to LoopNet

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Sunday, May 27, 2012 

Nothing Like Chocolate Film Screening

Nothing Like Chocolate Film Screening
Wednesday May 30, 2012
05:30 PM 
"NOTHING LIKE CHOCOLATE" will be shown on Wednesday, May 30, 2012 at 5:30 pm, at the Unitarian Society (1535 Santa Barbara Street), as a benefit for The Sustainability Project, a 501c-3 non-profit organization.

A Q&A with filmmaker Kum-Kum Bhavnani will follow the film, along with a chocolate tasting generously provided by Chocolate Maya.

"NOTHING LIKE CHOCOLATE", which premiered at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, is narrated by Susan Sarandon and tells the moving story of the relentless and headstrong Mott Green, founder of the Grenada Chocolate Company, as he pursues his unique vision to create the best chocolate in the world, from scratch. See how the smallest chocolate factory in the world is doing enormous things for cocoa communities, and the world’s sweet tooth.

Deep in the rain forests of Grenada, anarchist chocolate-maker Mott Green operates an unusual chocolate factory that turns out delicious creations unknown to a world saturated with industrially produced cocoa. Mott seeks solutions to the problems of a ravaged global chocolate industry with solar power, employee shareholding and small-scale antique equipment that turn out delicious chocolate.

The event has limited seating (100), and is expected to sell out.  
Any tickets not sold online will be available at the door for $10 (cash only).  

Wednesday, May 30, 2012
5:30 pm at the Unitarian Society
1535 Santa Barbara Street
Tickets: $10
(Film length: 63 min)

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Dave Potter of Municipal Winemakers

is highlighted in this video. We highly recommend you stop on by and say "hi" to Dave and sample and savor his creations...especially when the food trucks are there!

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C'est Cheese is expanding!

Front Window by jessohackberry
Front Window, a photo by jessohackberry on Flickr.

Our favorite cheese mongers are expanding...BIG TIME!

C'est Magnifique!!

This fall, C'est Cheese will be taking over the space currently occupied by Thrasher Books AND the space currently occupied by Our Daily Bread. 
We are truly excited to see this terrific shop grow. Kathryn and Michael are wonderful and they have worked hard to bring amazing cheeses and artisanal foods to Santa Barbara "foodistas" and more. This expansion will help them bring more classes, tastings, opportunities for catering and space for diners to sit and savor their fare.

OK. Full disclosure. I am REALLY excited about this because I am hoping there will be extended opportunities for ME to snarf down more of their grilled cheese sandwiches and for them to have more room to stock Brown Butter Cookies and spices and gifts from my favorite local chef, Pascale Beale. 

No trip to the Saturday Farmer's Market is complete without stopping by C'est, it looks like no trip downtown will be complete without stopping by.

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Wednesday, May 23, 2012 

Food Truck 4th Thursdays at San Marcos High School

O Street Food Truck by santa barbarian 
A portion of sales from the food truck events will be donated back to San Marcos High School and used for campus improvement projects.

Different styles of food will be available from each truck: French fusion; Spanish/Polynesian Tiki and taco; gourmet barbecue; pastry, cupcakes, bread pudding; coffee/espresso drinks; and more, featuring O Street Truck, Tiki Tacos, The New Black, Sweet Arleens and Street Level Cafe SB.

Hours for the dinner time event are 5 to 8 p.m. on the Fourth Thursday of the month — May 24, June 28, July 26 and Aug. 23. The event will be held next to the San Marcos High School gym on the outdoor basketball court area. Enter the school parking lot from Turnpike Road. - Noozhawk

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Tuesday, May 22, 2012 

Simply Pies...Simply Delicous

and now...CERTIFIED GLUTEN FREE! This just in from The Pie Cottage:

Simply Pies Certified as Gluten Free Eatery in Santa Barbara
Simply Pies is proud to announce that it has received gluten-free certification from the Gluten-Free Certification Organization (GFCO), the leading gluten-free certification program in the world. While they have always offered gluten free menu choices, it is especially exciting to ensure that customers with Celiac Disease and gluten intolerance can dine with confidence.

Gluten-free certification is a painstaking process where an independent third party tests a company's products to ensure its gluten free status. With this certification, all of Simply Pies’ gluten free menu items will be marked with the GF logo. The GF logo represents quality, integrity, purity of products, unmatched reliability and strict gluten-free standards. The GFCO standards are vigorous, with a gluten free standard that allows each batch tested to be only 10 parts per million (PPM) for gluten protein.  The FDA suggests 20 ppm.  Simply Pies passed the inspection with phenomenal results: under 5 parts per million for gluten in its gluten free pie crust.

Simply Pies has offered gluten free menu items since opening its doors in 2008 at its commercial space in downtown Santa Barbara. When evolving from the commercial kitchen into a restaurant space in Goleta in 2010, owners Nancy Blau and Hana Miller began researching the process for certification. They wanted to give consumers the assurance that their gluten free menu options truly would not contain any wheat or related grains that proved problematic for those with Celiac Disease or gluten intolerance.

Simply Pies co-owner, Nancy Blau expanded on the reasons they offer gluten free items,  "We didn't initially set out to develop a Gluten Free crust.  We had so many customers coming through our door asking about Gluten Free pie and baked goods that we realized our community was underserved in this market.   We tried every other GF crust on the shelves and were underwhelmed.  Co-Owner, Hana Miller adds  “We set our sights on creating one that would have customers coming back for more and also to provide a place where people could dine GF and trust it wasn't contaminated.  We have friends who are Celiac and gluten intolerant and know how difficult it can be to find really delicious products." 

For more information about Simply Pies, visit

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Monday, May 21, 2012 

The Spice Sessions

Cooking classes from The Spicy Gourmet
Classes are conducted for 3–6 students. This is truly a hands on experience where you learn to combine spices and spice roasting techniques, as well as creating authentic spice blends such as Garam Masala and other “curry powders.”

Together we will choose three to four dishes from a selection of authentic regional classics from my menu. You might opt for spicy mulligatawny soup, thakkali isso (shrimp in a coconut-tomato curry), annasi (curried pineapple with cumin and fenugreek), chicken tikka masala, deviled beef with cardamom and cloves, or fried rice with eggs and turmeric.

The classes start at $75 per person and Dinesh provides the selected organic food, spices and expertise.

We will cook several superb dishes and then enjoy your creation together
Invite a few of your friends, form a class, and we will journey into the sumptuous world of spices. Ask about wine pairings for your menu.

Contact Dinesh, set a date, and let the culinary journey begin!

(805) 448-7961

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Louis Vuitton in La Cumbre Plaza

LV Multi 0205 by thecakemamas
LV Multi 0205, a photo by thecakemamas on Flickr.
Looks like it has packed it's bags and gone. Buh bye.

I really don't think I saw more than 2 people in the store the entire time it was there.

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Friday, May 18, 2012 

Taste of the Nation Santa Barbara

Share Our Strength’s Taste of the Nation® Santa Barbara has inspired several local chefs to lend their extensive talents to this premier culinary fundraising event. The goal? Raising money and awareness of childhood hunger in Santa Barbara County and the Nation. The locavore spirit not only resides in the foodie nomenclature, but in fundraising, too. Giving back to community, in more ways than one, is what these chefs are all about.

Jessica Foster, of her eponymous confectionery, has participated in Taste of the Nation Santa Barbara since its inception five years ago. Having been raised in the Central California area, Jessica knows that hand making every truffle, using quality local ingredients, makes all the difference. Asked why she has been involved in Taste of the Nation Santa Barbara, Jessica replied, “I’ve been asked to do alot of fundraisers but I keep coming back to Taste of the Nation because it involves good food and good people passionate about a good cause. And, it’s fun.”

Ron True, of the recently opened Arlington Tavern located at 21 West Victoria Street, began as a young chef at very same location when it was then the SOhO. He attended cooking school in Bourgogne France and ventured into kitchens worldwide, including NYC, Spain and Italy. He also spent time at the renowned San Francisco restaurant, Zuni Cafe, where Roast Chickens and Ceasar Salads have become foodie Meccas. Using the many influences from his experiences he has brought an inspired menu to the Arlington Tavern that he calls “New American Farm Fresh.” Chef True is excited to participate in Taste of the Nation Santa Barbara. “I’ve participated in Taste of the Nation events back in New York and it’s a great way to give back to the community, and I am very happy to be back.”

Mossin Sugich, of Blush Restaurant and Bar, was born in Santa Barbara yet raised in the United States, England and The Middle East. He was inspired by his grandmother and aunt to start cooking at twelve and continued his passion by enrolling in Santa Barbara City College’s Culinary Program. Chef Sugich has worked at many of the top restaurants in Santa Barbara, including Elements, the Four Seasons Biltmore and the San Ysidro Ranch before becoming the head chef at Blush. He has been participating in Taste of the Nation since 2008. He says that childhood hunger issues “hit home for me because growing up my mother’s family were all very involved with charity, and feeding the needy, but not in the just donating to charity type of charity. In the middle east melting pot, where a lot of different immigrants came to work, there was a lot of poverty. My family used to go buy bags of rice, and portion it out and go to the slums of the city. We would need to distribute it with a truck on-the-go, because we would get mobbed. It also hits home because I have a daughter and son on the way, so needless to say, it saddens me to see children hungry in any part of the world.”

Brian Champlin, of the Succulent Cafe and Trading Company in Solvang, had been working in the Santa Barbara restaurant scene for many years at venues such as Elements and The Wine Cask before following his dream of opening up his restaurant earlier this year. “Cowboy Western comfort food with French cooking techniques” is how Brian’s food has been described, but his fare can be summed up in one word; delicious. Actually, add another word to describe the cafe’s deliciousness; bacon. Brian started a charcuterie and Succulent actually makes and sells their own bacon that lives up to their name. Keeping it local and caring about community is important to Brian, so his involvement to help childhood hunger locally comes as no surprise.  “This is a great event. Food, fun and all for a good cause. And, doing something for the kids helps me sleep at night.”

On May 20, you can meet these chefs, along with many more and you too can give back to our local Santa Barbara community. All funds raised by Taste of the Nation Santa Barbara help support Share Our Strength’s efforts to end childhood hunger and benefits the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County.

Taste of the Nation® Santa Barbara is nationally sponsored by American Express, Sysco, Food Network, and is presented locally by The Daily Sound, The Montecito Messenger and 805 Living Magazine.

Additional local sponsors include the Montecito Country Club, Mentor Worldwide LLC, Montecito Bank & Trust, DCH Lexus of Santa Barbara, The Naked Grape and DRY Soda.

Tickets for Taste of the Nation® Santa Barbara are $65 for General Admission and $95 for VIP and can be purchased by visiting

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Wednesday, May 16, 2012 

Lawrence O'Donnell stands up for Mario Batali

after the Fox folks deride Chef Batali. Wonder how much money, time and energy they have given to better the world. I'm thinking..."not much" and yet they find the time and energy to belittle those who do.

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Hungry - The New YouTube Food Channel

coming soon to a computer near you!

YouTube content historically has been dominated by low- and no-budget user generated videos. But Seidel, a former top executive at Food Network who oversaw the launch of its sister network, Cooking Channel, said HUNGRY will feature professionally produced videos worthy of any network.

At launch, videos will stick mostly with YouTube convention, running one to three minutes, with new episodes posted weekly. Seidel said they also are eager to explore longer format videos. By the end of the summer, the channel hopes to have close to a dozen series, all produced in partnership with multimedia studio Electus-IAC, which is responsible for the channel's content.

One of the series will feature fellow Food Network alumnus Duff Goldman, the cake master behind that channel's reality show "Ace of Cakes." Goldman's YouTube program, "Duff's Food World," will be a sometimes irreverent variety show focused on food pop culture, including visits to unusual restaurants and spotlights of humorous food clips from the web and TV. - HuffPo

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Sunday, May 13, 2012 

I miss my Sundays

at the Vedanta Temple in La Crescenta.
Spent some wonderful mornings enveloped in musical spirit. It was so wonderful...except when hiking as meditation and running across the left over hind leg of a deer. (There are Mountain Lions living around there.)

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Friday, May 11, 2012 

Pascale's Kitchen - Cooking Class in the vineyards

There is an amazing opportunity to take a cooking class from our favorite chef Pascale Beale in the bucolic vineyards of Zaca Mesa. Not to miss opportunity.

Saturday, May 26th Noon - 2pm
at Zaca Mesa Winery, Foxen Canyon Road, Santa Ynez Valley
Enjoy the vineyard and its beautiful views on a warm spring day with a gourmet picnic and the acclaimed Chef Pascale Beale.  She will prepare a lovely spring picnic featuring dishes from her latest cookbook:  A Menu For All  Seasons~Spring.  Along with an amazing picnic, Zaca Mesa wines, each guest will receive an autographed cookbook from Pascale.  Each guest can choose their own cookbook; Summer, Autumn, Winter or Spring.
Cellar club members - $75 non-members $85

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Highly Confidential - Restaurant for Sale

wonder which downtown restaurant this is.
$375,000. Amazing Santa Barbara Location in the Heart of Town. Just a Few Blocks From Stearns Wharf and the Beautiful Santa Barbara Waterfront. Surrounded By Many Popular Restaurants, Bars, and Retailers. High Foot Traffic Area.
Beautifully-Remodeled Restaurant with High-End Build-Outs. Approximately 3,000 Square Feet with Outdoor Seating. Fully-Equipped Chef's Kitchen with Walk-In Cooler. Private Dining Room. Beer & Wine (Type 41) License. Long Term Lease Through November 2020 Plus Two 5-Year Options - BizBuySell

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Wednesday, May 09, 2012 

Whole Foods Market Santa Barbara is Hiring

What: Team Member Job Fair
When: Tuesday, May 15th 7:00AM -- 12Noon
Where: 3761 State Street, Santa Barbara
*Applicants, must meet in the tented area in the parking lot at time listed above (only)
No phone calls please

What they're looking for:

Legendary Customer Service Skills
Passion for Food
Strong Work Ethic with a Proven Track Record
Team Player

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Tuesday, May 08, 2012 

Tell The GOP To Stop Playing Hunger Games

It isn't a movie this time. There are American lives at risk. Perhaps your own.
This week the House of Representatives is expected to vote on a package that would cut more than a shocking $33 billion from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. Cuts of this magnitude will impact every household seeking nutrition assistance, the overwhelming majority of which have a member who is elderly, disabled, a child, or working poor. Two million people would lose all of their benefits, and 44 million others would see their benefits reduced; 280,000 schoolchildren would lose automatic access to their free school breakfasts and lunches.

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program has helped millions of Americans such as Tara, a working mother who once went hungry for a whole weekend to feed her son, put food on the table. Without it more than 5 million Americans would have slipped into poverty in 2010.

It’s time to tell conservatives in Congress that we’re done playing these hunger games. We don’t need to cut food assistance for families struggling against hunger in order to finance more tax breaks for millionaires and to bolster our bloated military budget.

If Congress is hoping that you don’t know about these cuts or that you won’t contact their offices to push back, they’re going to be wrong. Help us spread the word about these cuts—share our Hunger Games trailer and weigh in with your members of Congress now.

Nearly 45 million Americans are counting on you. May the odds be ever in your favor! - Think Progress

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Monday, May 07, 2012 

Figueroa Mountain Brewing

coming to Santa Barbara's "Funk Zone?"

I tell you...the rumours were flying this weekend
We'll see. This news would be HUGE for the lovers of Figueroa Mountain brewskis. 

Follow them on Twitter or Facebook to see if this comes to fruition. 

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The Blue Owl Santa Barbara

Rumours heard over the weekend suggest that The Blue Owl will soon find a permanent un-late night nest at a restaurant space near Nordstrom.

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Friday, May 04, 2012 

Hope the Winehound doesn't have to move

Looks like the building they are in is up for sale. Anyone have $2.9 mil at the ready?

Turnkey ground floor space ideal for office or retail (currently occupied by the "Winehound" leased through 9/30/12). The second floor office was once home to a technology tenant (fiber optic line brought into building), and third floor luxury penthouse with city views and rooftop patio and spa. Clear span construction and large second floor deck. All elevator served. 12 parking spaces included. 5.45% proforma cap (call for details). - LoopNet


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