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Chef Carrie Cusack at Simplethings sandwich & pie shop is from the town of Joplin, MO that was devastated by the recent tornados. She has family and friends who have lost everything. In an effort to raise relief funds, Simplethings immediately donated all proceeds from her famous signature Missouri mud pie to the American Red Cross for Joplin. Visit Simplethings for something sweet and to help the people in Joplin. 8310 W. Third St. (323) 592-3390.
Every Sat. and Sun. from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. AOC serves up blood orange mimosas and wood oven-baked pain perdu. From 2 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. enjoy a cheese and charcuterie plate with a delightful glass of wine. 8022 W. Third St. (323)653-6359.
Over the hill in Studio City a new chef, Adam Horton, has taken over the kitchen at Raphael. Formerly at the Saddle Peak Lodge in Calabasas, Horton introduces an American and International menu with roasted duck breast with garlic glazed Chinese broccoli, sweet soy, sudachi, Asian pear, ash and flowers or USDA Prime Eye of Ribeye with celeriac, red cabbage, red wine and pear. For dessert, he is preparing a banana bread pudding with tempura bananas, peanut brittle and house made peanut butter ice cream. 11616 Ventura Blvd. (828)505-3337.
Breadbar’s “Popchef” Series
On Wed. June, 8, the Ramen Bull series will begin at Breadbar Third Street with a contemporary ramen-centric menu, gourmet sides and housemade sodas. Consulting chef Noriyuki Sugie of Ironnori Concepts is offering a value-driven menu of hot steaming bowls of short rib ramen, oxtail ramen, beef tongue ramen, spicy ramen and corn beef ramen. The series begins at 5 p.m. and is offered on Mondays – Saturdays until September. Specialty sodas include housemade hibiscus tea soda, ginger beer, root beer, and pineapple soda. 8718 W. Third St. (310)205-0124.
Casa Vega Celebrates 55 Years
A family-owned Mexican restaurant in Sherman Oaks is celebrating its anniversary by launching a Bloody Maria cart during weekend lunch service starting June 4. The cart features House vodka, Bloody Mary mix, fresh lime, olives, and celery. There is also an Absolut Mary with Absolut Pepper Vodka. Casa Vega is rolling back prices to when it first opened on June 28, 1956. The crowd-favorite house combination with soup or tostada chiquita, Spanish rice, refried beans and a choice of chile rellano, chicken taco, beef enchilada and vegetable tamale is available for $2.15 during the one day celebration. 15501 Ventura Blvd. (818)788-4868.
Morton’s Special Event
Morton’s signature hors d’oeuvres will be paired with Maker’s Mark handmade whiskey for a tasting event on June 16 at 5:30 p.m. A member of the Maker’s Mark Heritage team will take guests on a journey from the barrel to the bottle. Live jazz and cigars are available. Tickets are $45 and 100% of proceeds from the event’s silent auction will benefit Birdies for the Brave, a national military outreach initiative supported by the PGA TOUR. 735 S. Figueroa St. (213)553-4566.
Gladstones Special Dinner
Beer enthusiasts can enjoy dinner and a Morandell Imports tasting at Gladstones on June 7. Sample Chef Dean Grill’s coastal favorites with seven rare brews including Anno 25 hefeweizen, served with Ahi Tuna two ways, and Schlagl, an organic rye bitter ale paired with a cilantro bread crumb encrusted local halibut. The highlight of the evening will be the 961-year-old Weltenburger Kloster, the oldest dark beer in the world, served with curried coconut shrimp and Jasmine rice with a caramel glaze. This unique event starts at 7 p.m. and the cost is $59 per person. 17300 Pacific Coast Hwy. (310)454-3474.
Celebrate Gay Pride at Magnolia’s
Magnolia Bakery is offering a cupcake with all the colors of the rainbow in support of Gay Pride 2011. Enjoy a colorful and delicious vanilla or chocolate cupcake topped with buttercream and an edible rainbow decoration for $2.75. It’s also rhubarb season, offering a rhubarb crumb pie, a strawberry rhubarb double crust pie and a rhubarb crumb muffin now through the month of June. 8389 W. Third St. (323)951-0636.
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