Saturday, April 28, 2012

GMO Labeling Initiative Heading to California Ballot!

Hi LA friends, I wanted to let you know about this event taking place in LA next week to celebrate the good news that Californians will get to decide in November whether we have the right to know if the food we eat is made with genetically engineered ingredients. This rally and press event will take place at the Board of Elections office in Norwalk, where hundreds of thousands of signatures will be dropped off on May 2. Please help spread the word and all are welcomed to come celebrate! 

Stacy Malkan
Environmental Working Group

We have a right to know what's in our food. More than 90% of Americans agree: genetically engineered food should be labeled. We are going to get this done in California. Join us on the road to victory in November!

GMO Right to Know Victory Rally May 2 in Los Angeles: On Wednesday, May 2 we will be turning in more than enough signatures to bring the California Right to Know initiative to label genetically engineered foods on the November ballot! This massive achievement is thanks to the work of thousands of volunteers across the state, including farmers, concerned, parents, activists, celebrities, sustainable businesses and many others. 

Now we need your help to show the world the energy and commitment behind this historic initiative. Join us May 2 to celebrate our success and show the world our intention to win in November. We will deliver petitions in baby carriages to represent how important this issue is to future generations.

Please arrive at 10:00 a.m. May 2 with signs, posters, carriages, bring the kids and your friends!

Los Angeles area event: Meet at Board of Elections office at 12400 Imperial Highway, Norwalk. Speakers: singer, songwriter and GMO Right to Know leader Zuri Allen Star, petition leader and mom Stacey Hall, special guests TBA. 

Help spread the word:



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Saturday, April 14, 2012

Food Truck Fever Hits Paris

by Paige Donner

Paris, the ultimate city of foodies, is, as we write this, gripped with Food Truck Fever.



Yes, believe it! In exemplary fashion of how it takes several months to a few years for trends to cross the Atlantic (and it goes both ways!)... Since December, when Paris got its first Food Truck, aptly named Le Camion Qui Fume (transl. "The Smoking Truck,") to now, mid-April when Paris can boast its second Food Truck as of April 1st - Cantine California - to feed the fevered frenzy for French Fries, we can now confidently say that food trucks have firmly taken hold of the Parisian Foodie Scene.


Because, indeed, it is french fries these food trucks purvey. Cantine California offers both sweet potato french fries and regular french fries. All are organic. On their menu are also Burgers made from steak-grade quality cuts of beef bought direct from a small country farm where no hormones or other additives are used to process the meat. Same goes with the pulled pork he slow roasts in Mexican (mild) spices to achieve a very excellent Paris rendition of carne asada tacos. The taco shells are handmade in the truck and are the traditional soft tacos that anyone from California has come to expect.


And the cupcakes - red velvet with a butter cream white frosting, or a deep dark chocolate with a rich chocolate frosting - all made with organic flour that he - owner-entrepreneur Jordan Fielders (French/American/ Canadian) also buys direct from the mill. And the chocolate is Fair Trade too. The chef, also named Jordan (Powers) and her boyfriend man the cooking and prepping while Jordan Fielders, always a foodie but formerly working in the energy and mining sector, takes care of the "front of house."


Figure on about 10€ for a plate of carne asada tacos, served with lime wedges and real black beans, along with authentic hot sauce. Truly one of the few places, very few places, in Paris where you can find an authentic California -even S. of the border - taco. Hamburgers are stupefyingly delicious. I'll stop by regularly just for more sweet potato fries. And the cupcakes are a terrifying 2.50€ - terrifying because at that price I'll be able to pick up a half a dozen of those fresh baked butter cream monsters at a time.


Kudos to both Kristin of Le Camion Qui Fume  - read more about her hamburgers in this month's Glamour magazine, French version - and Jordan of Cantine California for braving not just a city of foodies (yes, ok, read food snobs) but also a business bureaucracy that doesn't make things all that easy for young entrepreneurs. Although, I have to come clean, I did see a food truck parked in St. Germain - on St. Germain Blvd near rue du Bac - last year during Designer Days. They were giving away/selling little cups of butternut squash soup and macarons, if memory serves. Will have to dig up that picture I snapped...if only to prove to myself I'm not imagining it!

Also, when you reflect on the whole itinerant food vendor thing and the long history the city has with its fresh markets, all of which also have food vendor stalls established within them (like crepes to go or roasted chicken with potatoes) it doesn't, in fact, seem like such a stretch for these new kids on the block to rock up to the same curb and set up their tent, er, truck.  After all, one thing Parisians do know and that's food. And every lunch hour, M-F, millions of them swarm the city streets looking for something good to eat.

FYI, Le Camion qui Fume accepts cash only; Cantine California accepts credit cards and cash. Check their sites/ Twitter feeds for today's location.

Twitter @ LocalFoodWine   [photos/video by Paige Donner]

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Saturday, April 7, 2012

Saint-Emilion Wineries Hold Open House 2012


[press release]

This year the Saint Emilion "Portes Ouvertes" Open House event will last four whole days from Saturday 28 April to Tuesday 1st May 2012.

If you are looking for an idea for a real break, don’t miss this unparalleled opportunity to meet the winegrowers of the Saint-Emilion, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru, Lussac Saint-Emilion and Puisseguin Saint-Emilion appellations, who are opening their estates to welcome visitors, share with them their passion for wine and invite them to taste their products.

The program has been significantly updated this year:

  • A winegrowers’ dinner will be served in the Dominicains Hall on Saturday 28 April and the Saint-Emilion Jurade will be present,
  • An oenologist will lead tastings of Saint-Emilion Grand Cru Classé wines in the Saint-Emilion Maison du Vin,
  • On Sunday 29 and Monday 30 April, bus tours will be available for visitors. These will be free shuttles running between all the chateaux that are open,
  • Two reception tents will be set up at each end of the town to provide information, guidance and support for visitors,


As before, visitors will be able to get to know the chateaux around four themes:

  • Tasty delights
  • Exploring our architectural heritage
  • Culture and fun events
  • Family properties and traditions

This will also be a perfect time to explore the Medieval town, attend tasting classes at the Saint-Emilion Maison du Vin and really enjoy a weekend travelling around the Saint-Emilion vineyards.

There will also be a question-and-answer contest with bottles of wine from the different Saint-Emilion appellations as prizes!

For further information and brochures:

Maison du Vin de Saint-Emilion – Place Pierre Meyrat – 33330 Saint-Emilion – France - Tel.

+33 557 555 055 –

Conseil des Vins de Saint-Emilion – 14 rue Guadet – 33330 Saint-Emilion – France -Tel.

+33 557 555 050 –

Office de Tourisme de la Juridiction de Saint-Emilion - Le Doyenné - Place des Créneaux –33330 Saint-Emilion – France - Tel. +33 557 552 828 -

From 16 April 2012 you will be able to download the brochure from the website: (Photos courtesy Vins Saint-Emilion)




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