October 11, 2007
Kitchen Stadium meets the Skirball, Miri Ben-Ari glows downtown, Jona Goldrich tells his story
Iron Chef In the House
Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto paid a visit to the Skirball Cultural Center on Sept. 30, entertaining the crowd with a colorful cooking demonstration featuring menu items from his restaurants. The charismatic and world-class chef from Japan recently released his first cookbook, "The New Art of Japanese Cooking," which exemplifies his self-styled "global cuisine," a combination of French technique, Italian simplicity and Japanese flavor. The audience watched him sauté shaved daikon radish in marinara sauce and grill Trader Joe's fajita bread brushed with eel sauce for his raw tuna pizza. |
In conversation with Evan Kleiman, host of KCRW's "Good Food" and owner of Angeli Caffe on Melrose, Morimoto recalled fond childhood memories of dining in sushi restaurants with his family. From then on, he had two dreams: to become a professional baseball player and a sushi chef. He realized the latter ambition, although he plays baseball as a regular hobby. The audience was enamored with Morimoto's adroit use of the custom-designed knives he carries with him wherever he travels. While in Los Angeles, he dined at fellow celebrity chefs' haunts: Mario Batali's Osteria Mozza and the Wolfgang Puck steakhouse Cut. When asked who his favorite chef is, Morimoto said, "my wife."
Fiddling Around for Magbit
Ben-Ari got personal when praising Magbit's work providing interest-free loans and scholarships to students attending Israeli universities. She was forced to drop out of college after a few semesters when she couldn't afford tuition payments, "But don't pity me. I won a Grammy with Kanye West. Things worked out for me."
Apple and Family Get New Big Apple Digs
Super-starlet of half-Jewish lineage Gwyneth Paltrow recently purchased a $5.5 million penthouse in Manhattan's Tribeca from Israeli real-estate/diamond tycoon Lev Leviev, Jewsweek.com reported. Leviev, ranked No. 278 on Forbes' "World's Richest People" list, is reportedly worth $2.6 billion. As chair of the Africa Israel Investments Group, Leviev, an Uzbekistan-born Lubavitcher Jew, built the River Lofts project, which attracted actors Meryl Streep and Harvey Keitel. He also managed the recent acquisition of a $426 million historical building in Manhattan that will convert to luxury housing. Paltrow and husband, Coldplay singer Chris Martin, will live in the nearly 5,000-square-foot pad with their children, Apple and Moses. Now that's the suite life!
LAPD Supporters Honored
Gordis and Scheindlin Join Shalem Center
Since he departed Los Angeles to make aliyah with his family in 1998, Rabbi Daniel Gordis continues to establish himself as a major leadership force in Israel. He recently joined The Shalem Center as senior vice president and as a senior fellow in its Institute for Zionist History and Thought. Shalem was established in Jerusalem in 1994 with the "goal of developing the ideas needed to guide and sustain the Jewish people in the decades to come," according to its Web site. The educational institution supports research, teaching and publication in the areas of Jewish morality and politics, Zionism, biblical archaeology, democratic theory, and economic and social policy. Ahavia Scheindlin, former vice president of European operations for the Shoah Foundation, is Shalem's new vice president for development.
L.A. Phil -- Under and With the Stars
'Jona's' Tale of Survival
A Bright Idea
Avni Films Abound
Handsome Israeli actor Aki Avni, who splits his time between the Pacific and Mediterranean coasts, is heading to the Chicago Festival of Israeli Cinema next week (Oct. 18-28) to bask in the limelight of his newest film, "Salt of the Earth" ("Melah Ha'aretz"), which screened in Los Angeles during the Israeli Film Festival in March 2007. Avni recently completed filming "My Mom's New Boyfriend," starring Antonio Banderas and Meg Ryan.
Following the Leaders
More than 260 community leaders and friends gathered on Sunday, Sept. 9 to salute Annette and Dr. Reuben Beezy and Adina and Ilan Bender with the 2007 Distinguished Community Leader Award. The San Fernando Valley Council of NA'AMAT USA sponsored the luncheon held at the Olympic Collection. Rabbi Ed Feinstein of Valley Beth Shalom delivered the keynote address and Phil Blazer emceed. NA'AMAT USA National President Alice Howard congratulated the honorees.