Author Archives: curated4life

Animal-Refined Wild Western cuisine in Los Angeles

If you love food you have most likely heard of animal. The minimally designed and decorated restaurant opened to great acclaim in 2008 by Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo. It has received constant accolades since its 2008 debut including praises from multiple prestigious publications as well as appearing on The Layover with Anthony Bourdain. We found animal to live up to all of its press and hype providing creative, unconventional, and wonderfully tasty cuisine. Not to mention that they have a great non-Califonia-centric wine list.  The menu reads like something out of a Louis L’Amour Wild West novel but with a refined and approachable sensibility. It is constantly changing and features many stars such as crab, barbequed octopus, rabbit, and bone marrow to name a few.  animal is a buzz with creative energy, great beverages, wonderful food and atmosphere. animal is out right fantastic, but in the famous words of LaVar Burton ” But you don’t have to take my word for it,” try it for yourself.

435 N. Fairfax Ave.Los Angeles, CA 9003
(323) 782-9225

Eat, Love, Drink, Be Merry, and Live Curated!


Filed Under: Eat

Central Kitchen, San Francisco – Simply Amazing Cuisine

Recently arriving on the food scene in San Francisco is the newly minted Central Kitchen. Central Kitchen is another creation of the Ne Timeas restaurant group who created the fantastic and celebrated flour + water restaurant. Executive Chef Thomas McNaughton and team have joined the dialogue about what California cuisine actual means through using locally sourced, sustainable products to create a a continually evolving menu of craft, refined food. Central Kitchen is located in what may best be described as a comfortable and casual venue. With it’s simple New England-meets-Portland-meets-San Fran design, we found our seats in the indoor “patio” an ideal environment for eating, drinking, and being merry. Once comfortably seated, we were excited to glance through the tantalizing (and affordable) menu and well-curated wine list. The menu changes daily based on what is seasonal and locally available, and a chef’s tasting menu (and optional wine-pairing )is also available.  In end, Central Kitchen is fabulous and has simply amazing cuisine.

Padron peppers with fennel pollen & espelette.

Three cheeses, lavosh, fennel preserve, and walnut.

Pickled sardine with pole beans, crème fraîche and rye crumble.

Raw albacore, cherry tomatoes, squash and basil.

Hen with eggplant, hay roasted carrots, speck and egg yolk.

Roasted lamb with corn, stone fruit, and lobster mushroom.

Make sure and leave some room for desert (because they are epic)–a masterpiece from the former pastry chef–Jardinaire extraordinaire, Lisa Lu.

Beignets to die for.

On the left, our wonderful guide on this food and wine journey, Hillary. She is the best!

Eat, Drink, Love, Be Merry, and Live Curated!

 Central Kitchen
3000 20th St.
San Francisco CA 94110

Filed Under: Eat

Ursa Major – A Super Natural product for Men

A random graphic design blog led me to the discovery of Ursa Major.  I was intrigued by the brand’s simplistic modern design, leading me to further seek out the company. I was not only intrigued by the great graphic design and aesthetic of this brand but also about their philosophy of using true natural ingredients—no synthetic chemicals or known toxic ingredients—in efforts to produce sustainable skincare products of the highest quality possible.

The product quality and fantastic design led me to order all 4 products that Ursa Major had to offer for men: the Fantastic Face Wash (8 oz), Stellar Shave Cream (5.1 oz), 4-in-1 Essential Face Toner (8 oz) and Fortifying Face Balm (2.5 oz). These products are packed with delicious natural wood, botanical, and clean fragrances that stimulate your senses as they tingle, soothe and heal your skin. After using these products for the past few months I am happy to report that they are indeed Super Natural.

Fantastic Face Wash- smells of fresh cut wood and refreshing spearmint, it will leave your face tingling and calm

Stellar Shave Cream- smells like the forest after a summers rainfall, this cream is hearty, botanical, and  and strong enough to tame the thickest and densest beard leaving it calm and clean

no problem for this forest of a beard

4-in-1 Essential Face Toner- wow this stuff cleans soothes are refreshes after before during and after those long working days

Fortifying Face Balm hydrates and replenishes after those rugged shaves or anytime

Eat, Love, Drink, Be Merry, and Live Curated.

Ursa Major

purchase Ursa Major products here

A cowgirl conversion at Allens Boots in Austin Texas

The minute I stepped foot in Texas something in my innermost being was filled with a strange desire: not for Texas BBQ, guns, or the belt buckles….it was the boots.  My closet was filled with a beautiful shoe “collection” but I had never specifically craved cowboy boots.  This all changed the minute I strode my red, boho-chic, “Swedish Hasbeens” clogs into Allens Boot Store in Austin Texas.  My cowgirl conversion was instantaneous.  Perhaps it was the plethora of alter-like rows of perfectly displayed boots and the thick aroma of tanned leather that greeted you at the door.  Or maybe my stiletto-loving heart skipped a beat for these farm-fabulous comfort creatures that were actually down right adorable.  Either way, I had no idea that these shoes would have me proselytizing: all women need the sole experience of the one and only true cowgirl boot.  God Bless Texas!

Eat, Love, Drink, Live, Be Merry, and Cowboy Curated!

4 Great American Beers for the 4th of July

Happy 4th of July! We are taking a departure from the typical to celebrate are 4th with some tasty American Made brews, you should too. From left to right: Go Team–Orange County’s The Bruery collaboration with Eagle Rock Brewing. Brainless on the Peaches, Epic Brewing, Salt Lake City Utah. Goose Island’s Pepe Nero. Hop Notch from Uinta Brewing.

Go Team–Orange County’s The Bruery collaboration with Eagle Rock Brewing. This Belgian-style mild ale has a rich amber color, is low alcohol,  it’s light on the palate but rich with flavor, an easy drinker, great for a warm summers day.

Smells like peach Spirit. EPIC took their double gold medal winning Brainless Belgian, added organic peach puree and aged it in French Chardonnay casks from Sawtooth Winery, the end result in simply EPIC. This beer has a floral, peachy aromatic nose and is light on the palate, full of flavor but has some kick with it’s ABV 10.5%.

Goose Island’s Pepe Nero is the darkest of our bunch but quite an easy drinker. Pepe Nero is a farmhouse ale brewed with black peppercorns, it is earthy, rich, complex and balanced. The perfect pairing for all the meat you will be grilling for the 4th.

Move over Pliny the Elder there is a new Hop in town. Hop Notch is a perfectly balanced IPA, full of floral notes, bold, clean, and big, this is one tasty beer. If you love new world IPA’s you will not be disappointed.

These 4 beers are departure from your typical light summer brews and are sure to make fireworks in your mouth as well as being perfect for the 4th of July or any summer day.

Eat, Love, Drink, Live, Be Merry, and Celebrate the 4th Curated!

The Bruery / Eagle Rock brewing

Epic Brewing

Goose Island

Uinta Brewing