Sunday, April 06, 2008

The Cooks Library

A few weeks ago while at Borders, I was thumbing through one of the countless cooking magazines and stumbled across a list of the top ten cook book stores. I was excited to find one right in backyard! The Cooks Library was everything I dreamed of and more! Located on W 3rd blocks from Beverly Hills, it sits quietly waiting for those who find it to come in, sit down and take your time looking through their impressive inventory of everything related to food and cooking. The manager Tim was extremely helpful answering my questions and offering me what would become coveted space on the nearby couch to review my perspective purchases.

My love affair with cook books (and cooking) came from my grandmother...Mildred. Just the name tells you she was a salt of the earth woman. She would stand at the door, as if to say "I've been waiting for you", cleaned and presses apron on and insist you sit down as she promised to "fix you a little something". I would spend every weekend I could with her. My grandpa would retreat to the garage while she and I got busy in the kitchen. I must have been 5 or 6, she'd tie a dish towel around my waste and pull a chair up to the stove so I could add the salt, or stir the pot. She gave me my first cook book The Encyclopedia of Creative Cooking. It's signed "To the sweetest granddaughter a Gram could ever want. Cook! Eat!! Enjoy!!!" 5-13-85. It's beat up, stained and barely held by it's binding, but it's one of most treasured possessions.

The Cooks Library reminds me of a place she would love. As I snap out of my fog I notice the store is hoppin. Two women are patiently waiting, books in hand for my coveted space on the couch. I just finished Anthony Bourdain's The Nasty Bits and was looking for a new read. My friend @ Chubby Panda recommended
The United States of Arugula, and I found an interesting cook book Salt and Pepper. Those will do for today.

Next time your in L.A., check out this gem. Get there when they open, find a few books and settle in on the couch. This could be addicting!


8373 West Third Street
Los Angeles, CA 90048
866-340-COOK (866-340-2665)

Store hours:
Monday 1 - 5pm
Tuesday - Saturday 11am - 6pm
Closed Sundays

Cook! Eat!! Enjoy!!!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

I'm back....

I me. I feel like a pathetic blogger (or ex-blogger) with not posting since Dec., but things really have been that busy for me.

I got married Feb. 18th on Maui! It was stunning. We decided to take all that dough ($$$) we would have spent on a celebration here, and spent it on a celebration there. Just the two of was perfect.
We got married at Makena Cove and as you can see, it was a beautiful day. It was one wonderful week, everyday was like summer. We stayed at the Four Seasons and spent most of our time lounging by the pool doing absolutely nothing. It was perfect.

Where did we eat? Let me tell you what left us un impressed this trip. Roy's in Kihei. It was extra disappointing since this is one of Mike's favorite places. The atmosphere was drab, unlike the other lcoations we've been to in Fashion Island or on the other Hawaiian Islands. It was located in a strip mall, with an extremely dated interior. We order steak and seafood both of which were very 'common'. The quality of the steak was poor and again all very common, especially for the price (inflated Hawaiian price at that).

Mike and I both love to eat and try new places so he researched the web and found The General Store. The interior was nice, somewhat of a Hawaiian plantation feel. Plenty of local art displayed, but again the food did not match my expectations after reading reviews. Lunch for 2, $85. Just about then Mike and I were wishing we'd headed back to a favorite plate lunch joint. Don't get me wrong, I have no problem paying for a good meal, but I want just that. More often than not, I find that meal at a more local level. The establishment that's been in the family for years, or whatever they serve sends the message that they take pride in what the produce and serve it with a genuine love for what they do.

Spago @ the Four Seasons maybe? We failed to make reservations so no luck. We opted for the Quatro Steakhouse in the Four Seasons. This was the best fine dining decision we'd made. Our steaks were incredible, the service outstanding, and Maui provided us with another beautiful night to dine outside.

When lounging at the pool ordering margarita's, we had these incredible Kalua Pork Casadias The meat was tender and smokey and the margarita's paired perfectly. I've got to make a batch of those at home!

Still, it was my honeymoon and I was not in the 'blog, picture taking' state of mind. I have found that I miss this....writing about what I like and reading what you're chewing on. So with that said...I'm back.

Hope all is well for everyone out there and glad to be back. Keep writing...I'm reading!

Let's eat!