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May 25th
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Food & Drink

Wine Reviews

Vine and Dine

Vine and Dine

 

Solaire Restaurant in the new Hotel Paradox  

I am so excited about the opening of Hotel Paradox. I was taken on a tour about two weeks before it officially opened by Executive Chef Ross McKee and Food & Beverage Outlets Supervisor Guy Freshwater and was greatly impressed. 

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Dining Reviews

Welcome To Michaella’s Kitchen

Welcome To Michaella’s Kitchen

Capitola Coffee Roasters finds a comfy new home at Capitola Book Café

Capitola Coffee Roasters and Patisserie has found a new lease on life at the Capitola Book Café. Owner Michaella Olavarri, pâtissier extraordinaire, noted on the restaurant’s Facebook page recently that she has never been happier.

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Wine Reviews

Pierce Ranch Vineyards

Pierce Ranch Vineyards

Albariño 2009

Trying a lovely bottle of wine in a new restaurant is always high on my list of things to do. My husband and I spent a night in Carmel at the Hofsas House, a delightful boutique hotel about five minutes’ walk from the center of town, and as we were looking for an interesting place to eat, the hotel recommended Mundaka—an upbeat little tapas restaurant with a terrific vibe.

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Dining Reviews

Garden Party

Garden Party

Main Street Garden & Café now features Italian countryside cuisine

Farm to table doesn't get much closer than at Main Street Garden & Café. Kiwi vines shade the patio, and what's ripe on the vines in the restaurant's cheery organic garden is featured on the menu. Guests are even encouraged to wander amongst the plants.

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Dining Reviews

Putting Up: Part 2

Putting Up: Part 2

They say if it can be grown, it can be canned, or "put up.” In a cabinet under my mother's stove, there was a covered pan that contained solid paraffin. Each year, she would reheat it, add some more, and use it to seal the jars of jellies made from the fruit of our trees. I later learned the simpler and more reliable hot canning method.

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Wine Reviews

Soquel Vineyards

Soquel Vineyards

Pinot Noir 2010

We picked a good day to go on a wine-tasting trip to Soquel Vineyards. The winery had released their Estate Pinot Noir Partners’ Reserve 2010 ($40) that very day, and I immediately fell in love with it.

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Dining Reviews

Mid-day Multi-course Feast

Mid-day Multi-course Feast

Surround yourself in Thai culture at Bangkok West

At Bangkok West, Thai cuisine is waiting to fuel a reasonably priced weekday lunch. It's like wandering into another world, from the meandering walkway to the ornately appointed interior with bejeweled gilded carvings, statuary, and Kalaga tapestries.

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Dining Reviews

Putting Up: Part 1

Putting Up: Part 1

Pesto pasta was a quick dinner when my kids were growing up. The sauce latched nicely into the ridges of radiatore pasta, to which I added some steamed vegetables and leftover bits of meat.

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Wine Reviews

Poetic Cellars

Poetic Cellars

Cabernet Franc 2008 – A Lyrical Wine You Will Love  

Looking for a romantic wine—and with a romantic label to go with it? Poetic Cellars fits the bill. Poetic’s labels show a picture of two lovers embracing, and every back-of-the-bottle label carries a beautiful poem by Joseph Naegele—a partner and owner in the winery along with Katy Lovell. But the true poetry appears in the wine itself. Winemaker Lovell makes the kind of wine that reminds one of a sonnet—with an ode to a lover in each sip.

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Dining Reviews

The Spice is Right

The Spice is Right

Downtown’s Laili celebrates the flavors of the Mediterranean

The final weeks of summer sift through my crossed fingers as I hope for another beautiful fall. It is the time of year when I most appreciate al fresco dining, I thought, as I relaxed on the patio of Laili, whose restaurant celebrates Silk Road flavors.

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Gate Openers

Up-and-coming artists like Ryan Bingham are a great reason to show up early to the Santa Cruz American Music Festival

 

Gemini Sun, Pentecost, Shavuot—Enlightenment and Gladness

As the sun enters Gemini on Sunday, sign of speaking, communication, thinking, inter-relations, writing and understanding languages, the feast days of Pentecost & Shavuot (Catholic and Jewish festivals) occur. During Pentecost’s 50 days after Easter, tongues of fire appear above the heads of the disciples, providing them with the ability to understand all languages and all feelings hidden in the minds and hearts of humanity. It’s recorded that Pentecost began with a loud noise, which happened in an upper room (signifying the mind). The Christ (World Teacher) told his disciples (after his ascension) when encountering a man at a well carrying a water pot (signs for Age of Aquarius) to follow him to an upper room. There, the Holy Spirit (Ray 3 of Divine Intelligence) would overshadow them, expand their minds, give them courage and enable them to teach throughout the world, speaking all languages and thus able to minister to the true needs of a “seeking” humanity. Pentecost (50 days, pentagram, Ray 5, Venus, concrete and scientific knowledge, the Ray of Aquarius) sounds dramatic, impressive and scary: The loud noise, a thunderous rush of wind and then “tongues of fire” above the heads of each disciple (men and women). Fire has purpose. It purifies, disintegrates, purges, transforms and liberates (frees) us from the past. This was the Holy Spirit (Ray 3, love and wisdom) being received by the disciples, so they would teach in the world and inform humanity of the Messiah (Christ), who initiated the new age (Pisces) and gave humanity the new law (adding to the 10 Commandments of the Aries Age) to Love (Ray 2) one another. Note: Gemini is also Ray 2. Shavuot is the Jewish Festival of Gladness, the First Fruits Festival celebrating the giving of the 10 Commandments to Moses as the Aries Age was initiated. Thus, we have two developmental stages here, Jewish festival of the Old Testament. Pentecost of the New Testament. We have gladness, integrating both.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Off Her Meds

Kristin Wiig runs wild—and transcends her sketch comedy roots—as a truly strange character ‘Welcome to Me’
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Flats Bistro

Pizza with an artisan twist comes to Aptos Beach

 

What’s your take on Santa Cruz locals?

Santa Cruz locals are really friendly once you know them. I think a lot of them have a hard time leaving, and I would too. Ryan Carle, Santa Cruz, Biologist

 

Soquel Vineyards

If Soquel Vineyards partners Peter and Paul Bargetto and Jon Morgan were walking down the street wearing their winning wine competition medals, you’d hear them coming from a mile away. This year was particularly rewarding for the Bargettos and Morgan—they won two Double Gold Medals and five Gold Medals at January’s San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition.

 

Enlightened Flavors

Squash & Blossom’s artisanal alternative-flour delights, beet kvass from Cafe Ivéta, and the Santa Cruz Baroque Festival