LA Food and Wine Santa Monica Events

LA Food and Wine Santa Monica Events
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The creators and producers of the premier epicurean lifestyle event on the West Coast proudly present the next great culinary and live entertainment playground, where celebrity meets celebrity chef. The First Annual Los Angeles Food & Wine Festival. Revel in city-wide celebrations, October 13-16, 2011.

Santa Monica Events

11:30am – 2:30pm
Lunch at Melisse With Guest Chef Douglas Keane
From the intriguing season-driven menu to its world-class wine list, Melisse is both a two Michelin Star Award winning restaurant and the recipient of Zagat’s highly coveted number one rated restaurant in Los Angeles since 2003.  Situated in downtown Santa Monica, Melisse inspires all of the senses with its chic ambiance, superb, contemporary French cuisine and gracious service.

This restaurant is only open for dinner but we have bent the rules and they have granted us exclusive access to their restaurants during lunch time.  Come join Melisse’s Executive Chef Josiah Citrin as he hosts Executive Chef Douglas Keane of Cyrus fame as they team up for this unique culinary experience.  A reception with delectable passed hors d’oeuvres and some refreshing bubbles is followed by a Four-Course Menu paired with some hand selected, perfectly paired wines.

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11:30am – 2:30pm
Lunch at FIG With Guest Chef Graham Elliot
At FIG restaurant in Santa Monica they put ingredients first.  Their menu is built around what’s in peak season and they always seeking out the region’s best growers and producers. They also serve simple, bistro-inspired dishes that bring out the best of what nature has already put in – nothing experimental or overworked; just pure, flavorful ingredients delivered to your table.

Come join Fig’s Executive Chef Ray Garcia as he hosts Chef Graham Elliot from Chicago and Top Chef Master’s fame as they team for this unique culinary experience. A reception with delectable passed hors d’oeuvres and some refreshing chardonnay is followed by a Four-Course Menu paired with some hand selected, perfectly paired wines from Far Niente, EnRoute, Nickel & Nickel as well as Dolce, all presented by Beth Nickel.

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7pm – 10pm
California Clambake with Tom Colicchio
We bring the best of the East coast to the warm beaches of Santa Monica, with an evening event featuring unique takes on coastal cuisine. Guests will enjoy delicious bites and sample fantastic beach friendly wine, beer and spirits. Join Tom Colicchio and his culinary friends as they cook up a clambake for guests to enjoy. Stroll and enjoy bites from over 10 amazing chefs while you work your way through 20 of the weekend’s best wine producers. Come experience this exclusive event while sampling some of the best that seafood has to offer!

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4pm – 7pm
Guy Fieri’s Brew B’ Que On Santa Monica Pier
What’s not to love about Sunshine, BBQ, Beers, Music and Friends? Combine all those ingredients and you have a memorable event. Enjoy a day on the famous Santa Monica Pier and take in the sun-drenched view of the Pacific Ocean, the sounds of music from bands like Uncle Kracker, BBQ tastes from celebrity chefs and beer from some of the most notable breweries around the world! – All this at one all-inclusive price. You will never find a pub crawl that will give you this opportunity. A perfect way to spend a Saturday afternoon.

More Info | VIP Access


Halloween Surf Contest

Haunted Heats 2010

The 3rd Annual Haunted Heats: a Halloween Surf Contest
by ZJ Boarding House
8am Saturday, October 29th, 2011
Tower 26 Santa Monica Beach
Free and Open to the Public
Visit Site | Register (PDF)

Get spooky on your board, compete for prizes, glory and blood at our infamous surf costume contest.

This is a ‘fun first’ competition, so if your still progressing in your surfing don’t hesitate to sign up!

All ages and skill levels are welcome, but you must be in costume to participate. Free entry and there is a chance to snag some grab bags and nice prizes (more details later).

And even if you don’t surf, come check out and root for your favorite costumed surfers!

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Art Crawl at Bergamot Station

Photo Credit: Thrillist

Gallery Hopping, Drinks and Music at Bergamot Station
Thursday, October 20, 2011
7pm – 10pm
Bergamot Station
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$15 gets you access to the first-ever gallery party, including an open bar, DJs and local art

Paint the night in bold, boozy strokes at Bergamot Station’s first-ever Art Crawl blowout, where just $15 pulls exclusive access to 3 hours of drinks, tunes & more. For 1 night only, over 20 of the galleries will stay open late to inspire you with thought-inflaming collections, including the epic origin story Pacific Standard Time: an unprecedented collaboration of cultural institutions across Southern California coming together to celebrate the birth of the L.A. art scene.

To ensure it’s not only the artists that are buzzed about, you’ll also get 3 stupendous hours of cocktails served at 2 bars and by sexy roving shot girls, while DJs RLDJ & SuperGoodMusic spin super-good music on KROQ’s tricked-out tables & speakers. Of course, your favorite food trucks will be rolling up for the night, including the Grilled Cheese Truck, Border Grill, and Coolhaus.

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Bergamot Station 2525 Michigan Ave. Santa Monica

Pier Del Sol

Pier Del Sol
Sunday, October 9, 2011
10am – 2pm
Santa Monica Pier and Pacific Park
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Join us this Sunday at Pier del Sol: Viva La Fiesta a fun, family event, where guests may enjoy a spectacular cuisine from more than 35 of LA’s top restaurants, including Santa Monica’s El Cholo, JiRaffe, Joe’s Restaurant, Mariasol, Melisse, Real Food Daily, Zengo and more. Pacific Park will have games, rides, arts and crafts, face painting, and lots of activities on the historic Santa Monica Pier.

Participants include celebrity guests, sponsors, supporters, and Special Olympics athletes and their families. Rob Friedman, Co-Chair and CEO of Summit Entertainment (Twilight Saga, Hurt Locker, 50/50) will be honored for his tremendous work with Special Olympics Southern California.

Tickets start at $45 and all proceeds from Pier del Sol will benefit the more than 9,000 athletes of Special Olympics Southern California. Participation in Special Olympics empowers our athletes to become physically fit, productive and respected members of the community.

Schedule of Events

10am – 11am
Live entertainment – Global Motion,
World Dance Company, Santa Monica College

10am – 1pm
Silent Auction – Main Stage Area

11:15am – 11:45am
Global Motion – World Dance Company, Santa Monica College and El Mariachi Alas De Angel Floor Show – Main Stage

Presentation to Pier del Sol Honoree – Rob Friedman, Co-Chairman and CEO, Summit Entertainment
Emcee – Frank Buckley – Co-Anchor KTLA Morning News Main Stage

1 pm
Silent Auction Closed!

1pm – 1:50pm
Global Motion, World Dance Company, Santa Monica College live on Main Stage

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Pier del Sol
Santa Monica Pier

Big Voice: a Documentary by Varda Hardy

Big Voice: a Documentary by Santa Monica’s Varda Hardy
Award-winning filmmaker Varda Hardy brings us Big Voice, the story of Santa Monica High School’s hugely committed Choir Director and his accomplished students.  By capturing the extraordinary accomplishments of this public school program, Big Voice demonstrates the possibility of excellent public education and even more specifically the value of arts education within our public schools.

As part of a grassroots effort, the producers of the film are currently raising funds through Kickstarter, a crowd funding, all or none, vehicle to be able to continue filming through the end of the school year.

All funding will go towards the production phase of Big Voice to pay for the crew, equipment and travel needed to follow the subjects throughout the year.

Due to the incredible support of 166 backers, Big Voice has currently raised almost $17,000 but if $23,000 more is not raised in the next 10 days the project will receive no funding.

More Info | Back this Project

The New World FEST Santa Monica

The New World FEST Santa Monica
Friday, October 7th – Sunday, October 9th, 2011
Santa Monica Beaches
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The New World Festival is a celebration of eco-friendliness, innovation, and forward-thinking science.

The New World F.E.S.T (Festival of Eco-Friendly Science and Technology), features 150 Interesting Exhibits; 15,000+ Interested Consumers; Plus Live Music, Demos, Speakers, Robots, Games, Thousands Of Potential Customers and Business Allies. Influential Southland Residents, Their Families and Friends, and The Media.

Come join us for a weekend of fun and let’s celebrate our “new world” and learn how we can protect it by working together toward a smart future. Working together toward a smart future makes sense. We share this planet. How we live impacts us all. We are one community.

The New World F.E.S.T is about gathering as a community, and having ourselves a good time while we hang out and maybe learn a thing or two … together. Rarely has the process of learning been this much fun. That’s a good thing.

At the FEST, we’ve got 150 exhibits featuring some of the best and most innovative eco-friendly products and services you’ll see. We’ve also got 6 stages of live performance – music, guest speakers, panel discussions, live product demo’s, chef demos, an eco-theatre screening award-winning films and documentaries, a very cool Sustainable Art exhibition, art workshops, live street art, plus a Spiritual Oasis, yoga classes, healthy food and beverage, robots, futuristic eco-science, and lots for families and kids – including music, puppetry, dinosaur digs, and a petting zoo.

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The New World Fest
Santa Monica Beaches

New Heroes Celebration

Photo Credit: Jeshua N.

New Heroes Celebration
Wednesday, October 5th, 2011
4pm – 6pm
Le Merigot Hotel, Santa Monica
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The annual New Heroes Celebration is held poolside at the Le Merigot Hotel. This reception welcomes all new educators, police officers, and firefighters to the Santa Monica community.

Sponsored by the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce, this is a wonderful opportunity for the community to welcome our newest public servants. This year’s celebration is made possible by Harding Larmore Kutcher & Kozal, LLP.

As part of the program all new educators, police officers, and firefighters are introduced by a representative from each respective organization.  The event is free to new educators, police officers and firefighters.

Appetizers and beverages will be served in the poolside courtyard. Valuable door prizes and a gift bag await all new educators, police officers and firefighters who attend.

Save $5 off tickets with Buy Local Market!

Le Merigot Hotel
1740 Ocean Ave. Santa Monica, CA 90401

Now Open: Tender Greens

Since opening their first Culver City location in 2006, the popular chef-driven, Tender Greens has steadily been gaining a mini cult following among health-conscious foodies. From the start, mastermind chefs Erik Oberholtzer, David Dressler and Matt Lyman had a goal of filling a void that was missing in Los Angeles – creating a healthy, farm-driven, and affordable, fine dining experience in a relaxed, eco-friendly space. This newly opened location is a perfect extension of their ever-growing mission.

Known for their market friendly, locally acquired produce, they also feature humanely raised, hormone free meats and sustainably caught seafood. This new location will encompass everything that the Tender Greens model is known for: sustainability, fresh and healthy farm-to-fork dishes at reasonable price (there’s nothing over $11).

Location, location, location. The long-awaited, Santa Monica Tender Greens is perfectly situated just off the Promenade. It’s nestled on the corner of Arizona Ave and 2nd Street. I got to chat with the very nice and incredibly passionate, Executive Chef Rian Brandenburg about what makes this location special. First off, this venue along with the Pasadena Tender Greens, are the first to go completely bottle-less, meaning all drinks are available on tap. From sparkling water to house made agua frescas, lemonades and ice teas, all are made fresh daily. They also feature various keg beer and wine. As for their site, along with acquiring their greens fresh daily from Scarborough Farms (as with every Tender Greens), they also have the advantage of securing the best local produce directly from the source. This restaurant is positioned just 2 blocks from the Santa Monica farmer’s market. Can’t get more local than this!

Chef Brandenburg is a San Diego native and has an extensive background in the California fish market scene.  He explained to me that while the core menu always stays the same, each of the seven Tender Greens locations offers unique dishes inspired by their respective executive chefs. For example, at this particular site, Brandenburg introduces his three dishes, which are appropriately inspired by their “beachy” environment. The Grilled Octopus and Thai Shrimp Salad are expertly sea-minded, while The Salad in the Raw features fresh produce direct from the Santa Monica Farmers Market.

Grilled Octopus Salad

Okay, I’m not going to lie; octopus is probably the most odd-looking creature you may ever eat. However, the Grilled Octopus Salad was incredibly tender, slightly salty, crispy and grilled to perfection. It was darn good. If you’ve never tried octopus before, I implore you to try this salad. It will blow your mind. Likewise, the Salad in the Raw was so delicate and delicious too; it’s a nice reminder of just how scrumptious fresh veggies can taste when left alone to do their thang. My favorite dish of the day was actually the Thai Shrimp Salad. Along with the tender and juicy shrimp mixed together with little gem lettuce, Thai basil, green papaya, hints of citrus, coriander and a chili lime vinaigrette, every ingredient lent a subtle touch that was so refreshingly delightful.

Fans of the classic Tender Greens menu, as always can still order their popular “big salads,” “hot stuff from the grill,” “comfort soups,” sandwiches and “simple salads” as well.

Everything about the Santa Monica location is very eco-friendly. The custom-made art shows the journey of their produce from the farm to your plate. The décor is bright with large windows, airy, clean and inviting. The designers utilized the original exposed brick (from the previous Lighthouse Buffet tenants) and everything from the tables, counter tops, floors and chairs were built from the broken down and rehashed wood material from the very building they inhabit among other recycled sources. The bamboo is 100% recyclable and the roof is made from compressed hay. They provide triple-filtered recycled water and their cups and bags are biodegradable. “It’s where the world is headed,” says Chef Brandenburg, he explained how it’s important for Tender Greens to “do what’s right for our earth” they don’t flaunt their eco-ways they’re just passionate about what they do.

“I really like dealing directly with farmers and being able to source locally,” says Brandenburg. “I can walk over to the farmer’s market and show the farmers, look, this is your tomato and this is what I did with it.” Here, they really want to “drive the message home” explains Brandenburg. It’s really about “accountability and responsibility.”

Check out the new Santa Monica, Tender Greens location and taste the difference for yourself. It doesn’t get any more natural than this.

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Tender Greens
(310) 587-2777
201 Arizona Avenue Santa Monica CA, 90401

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About the author
Amy T. Shuster is an actress, writer, singer and food enthusiast. Her blog is,, which focuses on creating positive content to help generate awareness of local independent foodie “gems” in the Los Angeles area. Amy lives and dines in Los Angeles, CA.

All pictures taken by Buy Local Market photographer, Da Xu.

2011 Septemberfest in Santa Monica

3rd Annual Septemberfest @ Santa Monica Pier
Saturday, Sept. 24th
3pm – 7pm
Santa Monica Pier
Visit Site | Tickets

Septemberfest is America’s answer to Oktoberfest. Having felt shorted for years by German food, Polka music, and Lederhosen, America finally claims its own tradition of BBQ and Daisy Dukes. The one constant? Beer.

This will be the biggest party to hit the Santa Monica beach all year. Musical performances by Black Crystal Wolf Kids and Petty Cash, 10 food trucks, over 150 beers, thousands of people and one awesome good time.

Septemberfest will support Take Me Home, a local non-profit animal rescue.


  • Admission is $40 for general admission and $50 for VIP. Food is sold separately.
  • VIP includes an extra hour with shorter lines for drinks and food for that hour.
  • Included with admission is unlimited 4 oz. pours in addition to live music.
  • Designated drivers can purchase tickets at the door for $15.

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Septemberfest 2011
Santa Monica Beach

Santa Monica 5000

Santa Monica 5000 5K/10K/Run/Walk
to benefit Santa Monica – Malibu schools sports athletic programs
Sunday, October 2, 2011
2600 Barnard Way Santa Monica , CA
See Start Times Below
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5K, 10K, run, walk for your school, your favorite sport, or the Education Foundation!

Event Highlights
• This race is for all ages and distances – 2.7k Dash for Kids, 5k and 10k run or walk!
• Health & Fitness Festival on the Pier with live music and breakfast for participants after the race!
• Every participant gets a K-Swiss T-Shirt!
• There are medals for top 3 finishers in each Age Group!
• There are ribbons for all finishers in the 2.7k Dash for Kids!
• There is a Baby Jogger Division for new moms and dads (running with the jogging stroller)!

Start Times
5k Start is at 7:30am
2.7k Youth Start is at 7:45am
10k Start is at 8:00am
2.7k Family Walk aka the Stroller Stride is at 8:15am

Not Running or Walking? You can still donate to the Santa Monica-Malibu Education Foundation or to a specific sport!

After the Event
Joing us for the Health and Fitness Festival on the world famous Santa Monica Pier!
Check out the latest running gear (shoes and apparel), nutrition, great food and other great vendors. The festival hours are 8:30am – 12pm.

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Santa Monica 5000
2600 Barnard Way Santa Monica, CA 90405