Donkey and Goat Tasting Tonight at Pourtal Wine Bar

Red Wine and Spinach Spanakopita

I had the opportunity to visit Pourtal recently for one of their tasting events. It was a really fun experience and there’s always opportunity to learn just a bit more about wine while enjoying the pairings with bite-sized food. Fortunately, they always have educational & libational events coming up – including tonight, which particularly piqued my interest. Why?

For today’s installment of Pourtal’s participation in “Natural Wine Week LA” (going on through Sunday), they’re hosting Jared Brandt from 7 – 9 PM, who hails from the the wife & husband-owned Donkey and Goat winery. Operating out of Berkeley, Tracey and Jared Brandt are the “…donkey and goat behind these naturally made wines that are distinctive, soulful and truly represent the earth from which they come.” I first tried their 2009 “Isabel’s Cuvee” Granche Rose at Allston Yacht Club with H.C. and can honestly say this is probably one of the only roses I would heartily recommend given my limited rose knowledge. The whole tasting of 5 Donkey and Goat wines is only $15. Arrive at Pourtal a little early for their 4 – 7 PM Happy Hour to take advantage of their $5 glasses of wine and $4 delicious eats (try their tater tots) and you’re set.

In the meantime, have a great weekend, everyone. Don’t forget that Cinespia in the Hollywood Forever Cemetery kicks the summer off tomorrow with a screening of Wizard of Oz ($10 donation). Also, the all-new Nice Cream Vegan Ice Cream parlor opens on the Cahuenga Pass in Studio City.

Friday, May 14, 2010

7 – 9 PM

$15 for 5 wines

Pourtal Wine Bar
104 Santa Monica Boulevard
Santa Monica, CA‎ 90401


St. Patrick’s Day Round-Up of Round-Ups

Photo credit to sebastian.b (altuwa) on Flickr

I’ve been eyeing the St. Patrick’s Day specials going around Twitter all week and have finally decided on one – in Hollywood. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t a ton of other options available. Whether you’re looking for a few special Irish menu items, a pub to knock back a couple ales, Irish music or happy hour pricings (or any combination of the aforementioned) – these round-ups got them all:

Alternatives to Green Beer: St. Patrick’s Day Cocktails + 2 Cocktail Recipes – Caroline on Crack for LA Weekly Food

  • includes Drago Centro, 8 Oz. Burger Bar, Chaya, Comme Ca, The Edison, Pitfire Pizza, Rush Street, 25 Degrees

Pubs in Los Angeles – Google Maps

Where To Drink Green Beer – Elise Thompson for LAist

  • Elise of LAist put together this Google Maps mashup of pubs – because sometimes you just need to know where to get a pint of ale. Also check out her green beer post.

Where To Get Shamrocked – LA Times

  • includes Redwood Bar & Grill, Brennan’s, Bigfoot Lodge and even The Standard (er?)

Happy St. Patrick’s Day – The Happy Hour Tour

  • includes Blue Palms Brewhouse, Henry’s Hat, Bodega Wine Bar, Liquid Kitty, Saints & Sinners, Cabo Cantina and Tom Bergin’s

Also, don’t forget Pourtal Wine Bar in Santa Monica, serving up $5 Vinho Verde (green wine that is ironically Portuguese) starting at 4PM. Verdugo Bar in Glassell Park is serving up Devil’s Pie late-night; wash it down with a brew on-tap. Hungry Cat in Hollywood – where I’ll be – is offering $4 Murphy’s Irish Stout Irish Slings and $6 Picklebacks (whiskey with a chaser of pickle juice). Also, Allston Yacht Club in Echo Park will be serving up Corned Beef Sandwiches for $6 each and pints of Guinness for $4. All food is $5 as they integrate St. Patty’s with their Wicked Wednesday.

Erin Go Braugh, Los Angeles!!

Super Bowl XLIV Sunday in L.A.: The Round-Up

I may or may not have a Super Bowl favorite (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Got a place to watch the Super Bowl this year? If not, you have a few options around town. These are great if you’re the kind of fan who doesn’t like to clean up afterwards. And there are other great lists which include those I’ve forgotten (see notes) on teh internets LA food pubs so don’t forget to check these out:

Eater LA’s round-up – including The Hungry Cat (Hollywood), Wolfgang Steakhouse (Beverly Hills), The Dugout at X Bar (Century City), POP Champagne & Dessert Bar (an “anti-Super Bowl” party in Pasadena – no TVs!)…

Also, Grub Street LA has a compilation which includes Seven Bar & Grill (DTLA), Locals Sports Bar (Mid-Town) and Morton’s Steakhouse (La Cienega)…

Added: LAist also has suggestions for The Big Game.

The Super Bowl is as good an occasion as any to stock up on cheese. Squid Ink at LA Weekly reports that if you say (scream at the top of your lungs), “Who dat,” at Beverly Hills Cheese Store, you’ll get 10% off your purchase. Store hours have been amended to 10 AM – 2 PM.

And if you can stand the clean-up and are really an entertainer at heart – starting in the kitchen – you can always check out these Super Bowl appetizer recipes from the LA Times.

Pass the nachos…and watch the game at these spots (take-away after the jump):

Added: Big Wang’s (Downtown LA)

According to Blogdowntown on Twitter, Big Wang’s is set to open its new downtown location ON Super Bowl Sunday. No word as to “specials” – my prediction is they won’t need any since South Park residents will be curious enough to stop by as it is. My recommendation? Get the wings. Simple.

Big Wang’s
801 S. Grand Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90017

Added: The Spanish Kitchen (La Cienega, West Hollywood)

The Spanish Kitchen is celebrating The Super Bowl by hooking up a massive projector-screen for the game. How does $5 margaritas and $10 bottomless Micheladas (described as “Bloody Mary but with Tecate”) sound? Appetizers are $5 the entire day.

The Spanish Kitchen
826 N. La Cienega Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA, 90069

Added: Pourtal (Santa Monica)

Wine with The Super Bowl will never be the same (Pourtal has artisanal beer, too). Take notice of the notes in your wine glass while cheering on your team into the red zone and munching on tater tots. The game will be broadcast on 3 flat screens as you order from their Happy Hour menu, which is available until 7 pm.

$5 Wine & Beer
$4 Appetizers

2 – 7 PM

Pourtal Wine Bar
104 Santa Monica Blvd.
Santa Monica, CA 90401

Chaya (Venice)

Chaya has four big-screen TVs located throughout the restaurant so everyone is ensured to have prime view. The entire space will also adopt the Happy Hour Sushi & Bar menu usually exclusive to the lounge area. To sweeten the deal, they’ll also be giving away $25 gift cards at the end of each quarter.

$5 Albacore Sashimi Salads and Chef’s Special Rolls
$3 Domestic Beers
$5 Margaritas

Enjoy bar bites such as Classic Housemade Beer-Battered Onion Rings with Spicy Mayo and Braised Short Ribs with a Red Wine Sauce and Potato Purée.

2 PM

Chaya Venice
110 Navy St.
Venice, CA 90291

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Pourtal Wine Bar Helps Haitian Relief Today As “Made In Malibu” Continues

Photo credit to Mr. T in DC on Flickr

Pourtal in Santa Monica is a must-visit for all vinos (even aspiring ones). Equipped with Enomatic machines designed to keep each bottle of wine fresh, Pourtal is able to let their visitors sample far more wines at their own pace, which are priced according to 1 oz. pours.

And what better time to visit than tonight: Pourtal will donate 25% of its wine tasting sales (7 PM – closing) to Haitian relief efforts via the Santa Monica chapter of American Red Cross. What a great way to help out while discovering your new favorite wine.

While you’re there: Pourtal is featuring a “Made in Malibu” Wine Tour and Tasting Series for the month of January, which is available any time during regular business hours. Each wine at the machines is priced per 1 oz. pour so you can sample at your own pace:

2006 Hoyt Family Vineyards Chardonnay
2008 Republic of Malibu Pink Lady Rosé
2007 Cielo Malibu Rouge
2001 Semler Cabernet Sauvignon Library Release
2005 Semler Syrah
2005 Rosenthal Malibu Newton Canyon Merlot
2004 Rosenthal Surfrider Red
2007 Griffin Family Vineyard Malbec
2007 Malibu Vineyards “Vortex” Sangiovese
2008 Malibu Sanity Pinot Noir, Schetter Malibu Vineyard

Can’t make it tonight? Check out the special hand-poured tastings with the Malibu winemakers – free with the purchase of a $15 Pourtal tasting card:

Jan. 20, 7-9 PM – Special hand-poured tasting with Cielo
Jan. 21, 7-9 PM – Special hand-poured tasting with Rosenthal
Jan. 27, 7-9 PM – Special hand-poured tasting with Hoyt and Malibu Sanity
Jan. 28, 7-9 PM – Special hand-poured tasting with Malibu Vineyards and Griffin Family Vineyards

Oh! And I can’t forget their happy hour. Every Monday through Friday from 4 – 7 PM, $3 appetizers are available to help soak up your wine. From January 1 – 15, 15% of proceeds during happy hour go to Heal the Bay and from January 16 – 30, those proceeds go to the Surfrider Foundation West Los Angeles/Malibu Chapter. What can I say? It’s good to support businesses that incorporate humanitarian efforts in their business model.

So whether it’s tonight (hopefully – for Haitian relief!) or later on, be sure to visit Pourtal and make a night of it. Your wine palate will thank you!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010 (7 PM – closing): 25% of sales to Haitian relief

Happy Hour: M – F, 4 – 7 PM with 3% appetizers, 15% proceeds to charity

January: “Made in Malibu” Wine Tour, Hand-poured tastings on scheduled dates

104 Santa Monica Blvd.
Santa Monica, CA 90401