January 15, 2018

“All thinking that is imbued with wonder is graceful and gracious thinking… And thought, if it’s not open to wonder, can be limiting, destructive and very, very dangerous.” — John O’Donohue, Walking on the Pastures of Wonder

Pre-sunset walk along the beach at the Ritz-Carlton Bacara Resort in Goleta, just outside Santa Barbara

Hoping your new year has begun with hope and moments of beauty…

As 2018 kicks into gear, I spend a work week from the beaches of Santa Barbara (with some Dad time for great measure), contemplating the year past and the year ahead.

On the work side, that means running down the top 12 new restaurant and the top 12 new bar openings of 2017, a checklist of ideas if you are looking for new places to visit (linked to below).

In addition to my weekly Time Out column and Liquor.com articles, there is my new restaurant review column (with drink pairings) at WineAccess, starting with a nationally buzzed-about Los Angeles restaurant. In the print issues of Oakland and Alameda Magazines, I dig into Oregon’s Willamette Valley beyond merely wineries.

The Cocktail Club, Charleston

This issue:
Top Tastes
The Top 12 New Bay Area Restaurants of the Year
Imbiber — The Top 12 New Bay Area Bars of the Year
Wandering Traveler
The Most Talked About Restaurant in America in 2017: LA’s Vespertine is certainly ambitious. But is it great? My review at WineAccess.
Imbiber11 Top Cocktails Around the US Now: From New Orleans to LA, what’s standing out now at cocktail bars.

As your personal concierge who tells it like a good friend would, I also create personalized itineraries: trips, meals, explorations (under “Services“).

Virginia

LINKS to Social Media & Articles:

Time Out Food & Drink
Liquor.com
Table8, National Editor
(2015-2017)
Wine Access Restaurant & Wine Column
Food Republic
Zagat SF Editor
(2014-2016)
Editor, Distiller Magazine
Liquor.com Drinkwire

SF Bay Guardian Critic (2009-2013)
Where Magazine