Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Los Angeles Fire, View From Southwest Airplane, June 5, 2009

The Los Angeles fire from the sky. Whereas I am sure part of this is just clouds, I do think a lot of it is smoke. If you look towards the top of the picture, in the center you can see the heart of the fire. The fire is eerily beautiful from this height.

On Saturday, we flew up to San Francisco for a friend's daughter's wedding, which is when I took this picture. We almost didn't got because the fire looked like it was creeping up on us the day before.

It was a little weird going to a wedding where I had never met the bride before. I don't think I've ever been to a wedding where I didn't know someone in the wedding party. But, I guess that is probably not unusual if you go as someone's date. I think my husband met the bride once - however, we are close friends with the parents, Amy and Michael and it was very important for us to be there for them for this rite of passage.

The wedding was simply gorgeous, every detail from the floral arrangements to the seating cards. And the bride was stunning - I think weddings are more about the brides than the groom. I mean the groom walked down the aisle but before he was even at the front everyone was turned around to look at the bride. No one really cared about him.

It was definitely one of those weddings you see in Town & Country, ones that have the pastoral settings, beautiful people and gourmet food. Everything down to the bread was made from local artisans from organic ingredients. There was even a sign at the door that read "N&K ranch." Wonderful but from another world.

See! These are the newlyweds - Nina and Kent. Isn't that arrangement in front of them magnificent? Every arrangement had that same feel - full of gorgeous late summer and fall flowers, bursting from the sun with lazy sprigs of amaranth throughout. The mother of the bride, Amy, who has impeccable taste spent about half a year putting her personal touch on everything.

The menu read like a 5 star prix fixe dinner - especially if you're used to a tired piece of chicken with wilted salad forcing you to go to McDonalds on the way home.

Paradise and Cowtrack Farms Garden Greens with pears,
humboldt fog chevre and glazed pecans with Champagne Shallot vinaigrette.

Main Course (Family Style)
Rancho's Fresh Catch of the Day
Max's Bourbon Baby Back Ribs
Grilled Garden Herb Chicken

Lemon Thyme Roasted Potatoes
Seasonal Vegetables
Farro Salad with Heirloom Tomatoes and Arugula

Local Artisan Breads
Buttermilk Cornbread
Sweet Olema Butter

Wedding Cake
Little Sweets

The cake was a marble cake with a whip cream, light frothy frosting. And little sweets consisted of shortbread cookies shaped like stars with a white frosting, gourmet chocolate brownies, miniature lemon meringue pies with a raspberry on top, peanut butter cookies with a huge chocolate drop on top, miniature custard tarts with fresh strawberries. The wedding planners had to literally guard the desserts when they were brought out with the cake because the photo ops weren't done yet! People, including me were absolutely frothing trying to get at them.

The next day brunch was good too - they had little cream puffs in the shape of swans which were a big hit.

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