December Food & Lifestyle News by Shaena Engle

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Shaena Engle brings us our monthly dose of food and lifestyle news for December 2020.

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Scratch/Bar & Kitchen Launches New Takeout Tasting Menus

Chefs Phillip Frankland Lee and Margarita Kallas Lee have teamed together to offer beautiful, elegant and exclusively curated tasting menus specifically designed for takeout. Limited to 10 guests per night, diners can pick up the special Scratch/Bar & Kitchen 10-course menu Wednesday to Sunday evenings at 7pm, priced at $125 per person. They also are offering a delicious Sushi/Bar takeout menu including their 16-course menu of nigiri, offered daily for pickup at 7pm, $95 per person. Visit https://www.exploretock.com/scratchbarandkitchen.

Mora Rooftop Offers Specialty Pizza for Pickup

WeHo’s Mora Rooftop added a specialty pepperoni pizza to their menu, specifically for takeout. Chef Mindy Oh’s tribute to lock-down comfort food, this yummy pepperoni pizza ($18) houses giant pepperoni with a side of house made specialty ranch (+$2). Available for both pickup and delivery.

Da Michele Opens Grocer Marketplace

Hollywood’s Da Michele has launched a grocer marketplace. They will prepare your entire grocery order and have it ready for pickup. Plus, customers will get a free margherita pizza with a $100 purchase. They provide items such as their make-at-home pizza kit, quality cheeses, fresh produce, eggs, milk, handmade pasta, and fresh pasta sauces. Additionally, the restaurant has promised those with reservations on the books during the now locked-down weeks that they will honor their reservation time and deliver their meal to their homes, without delivery fee.

Citizen Detective Now at the Geffen

Based on an unsolved 1920s Hollywood murder, this virtual detective show mixes theater, mystery and code-breaking. Audience members are broken into teams to decipher clues and uncover evidence. Watch out for the celebrity special appearance near the end, $65, now through December 20, tickets at https://www.geffenplayhouse.org.

Manuela Offers Supper for Two

Downtown’s Manuela is again offering their nightly Supper for Two takeaway special for $48. Diners receive an entrée, seasonal salad, vegetable sides, two biscuits and dessert. Entrée’s change nightly, curbside pickup and delivery are available via Tock and Postmates, call 323.849.0480 to order.

Freedman’s Offers Hanukkah Takeout

Silver lake’s Freedman’s Jewish comfort food restaurant is offering family style Hanukkah dinners from December 10 – December 12. For two ($100) or four (200) people, dinners include choices of brisket or roast chicken, challah, latke, matzo ball soup and vegetables, available for pickup or deliver. Pre-order starting December 4, visit https://www.freedmansla.com.

AKASHA Offers Holiday Gifts & Baskets

Culver City’s AKASHA restaurant is offering an assortment of gift baskets including cordials, nocino, snack mixes, granola, chutneys, jams, spice blends, olives, dates and other ingredients wrapped up in blankets and baskets, prices vary, available Tuesdays from 11am to 7pm and Wednesdays through Sundays from 10am to 8pm, visit www.akasharestaurant.com for information.

Randy’s Donuts Offers Ugly Christmas Sweater Donuts

Throughout December, Randy’s Donuts is offering Ugly Christmas Sweater Donuts with green or red frosting and holiday sprinkles. They are also offering Hanukkah Rounds topped with powdered sugar available Dec. 10 – 18.

Griffin Club Unveils $20 Million Renovation

Griffin Club, a members only social and athletic club has unveiled the final stage of their $20 million renovation. Including a new junior Olympic size adult swimming pool, new cabanas and Jacuzzi, the club also offers virtual workout classes, remote work spaces and socially distanced time slots for swimming, tennis and exercise.

DoorDash Launches Bilingual Art for Foodies

DoorDash has launched their first bilingual campaign aimed to uplift and amplify Latin voices in the restaurant and art communities. Art for Foodies is featuring a Miami based and national promotion. Miami based residents can participate in a virtual art-event and Angelinos can enter a national sweepstakes for a chance to win one of 50 signed prints from Miami based artist Fracisca Oyanharte. Through December 6, customers can place an order with the code “ARTWEEK” at checkout for a chance to win, visit https://get.doordash.com/artforfoodies/miami.

Baltaire Offers Holiday Prime Rib Dinners

Brentwood’s Baltaire steakhouse from Chef Travis Strickland is launching holiday prime rib dinners for groups of 4-8 people, as well as wine bundles giving access to the restaurant’s 500+ bottle wine list. Baltaire’s prime rib and wine packages are available for pick-up throughout the month of December, including on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve with some festive additions. Baltaire’s reserve Tsar Nicoulai caviar is also available as a supplement, $155 and up, order at https://waltzin.com/restaurant/baltairesholidaydinnercarryout.

BOU Brings Big Flavor to Holiday Meals

BOU, a new alternative to the traditional bouillon cube, is low sodium and all natural. These cubes come in a variety of flavors to spice up any holiday dish, including Ginger Miso Broth, Cinnamon & Coconut Miso Broth, Indian Curry and Gravy Cubes, available at Whole Foods Markets.

Jamba Offers New Kids Smoothies and Reward Cards

Jamba is offering two new colorful kid smoothies, Sash’s Splash and Croodaceous Coller, inspired by DreamWorks Animation film The Croods: A New Age. To celebrate the two newest smoothies and the upcoming holiday season – from now through December 28, when Jamba guests spend $30 on a Jamba gift card, they’ll get two $5 rewards cards.

NICK’S Ice Cream Offers Subscription Service

NICK’s ice cream, the Swedish style light ice cream, is offering a subscription service so ice cream lovers can never miss getting their favorite pint. Each serving is keto-friendly with sixteen flavors to choose from, at https://nicks.com.

California Gummy Bears Get A Makeover

California Gummy Bears have reinvented the beloved gummy bear treat using fresh fruit and natural ingredients. Flavors are non-GMO, kosher, soy, fat and gluten free and include their best selling fruit mix with 10 flavors including peach, lime, blueberry, cherry, raspberry, strawberry, pink grapefruit, tangerine, mango and grape ($6.95) and the California Gummy Bears Gift Set which includes three customizable mixes ($22.95), at https://www.cagummybears.com.

Dunkin’ Launches Sugarplum Macchiato

Dunkin’ has launched a new Sugarplum Macchiato and other festive treats including a frosted snowflake donut and packaged coffee in special winter flavors. The new macchiato features bright berry flavors with notes of vanilla and pairs perfectly with the frosted snowflake donut, $2 for a medium size, at participating Dunkin’ stores.

Foo Fighters Taco Comes to Casa Vega

Casa Vega has teamed up with Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters to create a limited edition Foo Fighters taco ($7). The taco features smoked brisket in a Mexican spice rub with BBQ sauce and Mexican coleslaw. There is also a special Foo Fighters cocktail with La Gritona Reposado tequila and lime juice ($14). Profits will be donated to No Us Without You, a charity for undocumented back of house staff and their families.

Rhum Barbancourt Brings Haiti to Your Holiday Celebration

This year travel to Haiti without leaving your house with Rhum Barbancourt, a rum used to make Kremas cocktails. Kremas mix condensed milk, coconut, rum, vanilla, lime juice and cinnamon for a taste of Haiti.

Glad’s Flex’n Seal Bags Help Keep Holiday Leftovers Fresh

Looking for a way to stretch leftovers? Glad’s Flex’n Seal stretchy storage bags are perfect for leftovers as well as portable snacks and holiday baked goods. Glad also has helpful YouTube videos with recipes for all your leftovers at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7B1OHB4Hf9g&feature=youtu.be.

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Shaena Engle
Shaena Engle is a food, lifestyle and travel writer for a variety of publications, including the Los Angeles Times, Pasadena magazine, AOL, The Daily Meal, The San Diego Union Tribune and PokerPro magazine. She has interviewed top chefs including Lidia Bastianich, Michael Chiarello, Hubert Keller, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Jose Andres, and many others. She has authored three books, The Cheap Bastard’s Guide to Las Vegas (Globe Pequot Press), The Best Places to Kiss in Southern California (Beginning Press, a romantic travel guide) and Silver Linings: Triumphs of The Chronically Ill and Physically Challenged (Prometheus Books).  She is also an amateur magician and often writes on gambling, poker and magical happenings.  She also is a freelance consultant on restaurant, food, travel and hospitality public relations and marketing efforts.
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