Club Culinaire Annual Gala Dinner Dance

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We foodies are driven by our craving for something new, something risky, something adventurous. Think Indiana Jones with a knife and a fork and that’s The Food Stalker baby, except in high heels! When we think of adventurers we tend to think of men, gruffy, bearded and grim. But did you know history is filled with curious, excitable women who have bucked the trend of staying home and gone on wild escapades either because they wanted to expand their horizons or perhaps boredom wasn’t their style? Suffice to say, I am inspired by women who live for adventure and a recent stalker escapade lead me to Club Culinaire’s Annual Gala at Luxe Hotel, in Brentwood with World Class Chef Olivier Rousselle to celebrate the season.

Created in 1980 by a few reputable chefs and restauranteurs, Club Culinaire hosts many events throughout the year. It’s a place where cooks, sommeliers, restaurant owners, purveyors and yes, even a Food Stalker, reunite to share a common passion for food and wine. Chef Olivier Rousselle, who originally hails from Paris, served up the skinny on all things edible, sippable and growable at this gala. Rousselle grew up, graduated from cooking school and took his first day job in the City of Lights. Oh how Paris is always calling me and trust me, being part of this organization is the next best thing. I cornered Chef in the kitchen with a thousand questions, as the sizzling scent of lobster simmered and quickly learned we were bitten by the same travel bug. Rousselle left for London after his first job and had the opportunity to cook for various British Royals. Still scratching that itch for adventure, he headed to South Africa’s wine country where he found a job at La Couronne Hotel and Winery under Chef Peter Goffe-Wood. In 1999, Conde Naste Traveler ranked the restaurant one of the “50 most exiting in the world”. Way to go Rouselle! Chef returned to London and then decided to try his hand at California cuisine and the rest as they say, history.

Look, the bottom line is it’s the adventures that we remember and what makes the best stories. It’s the times we push ourselves to the limit that we think back on years later. If you’re out exploring the big, bad world, you should be taking that trip to run with the bulls, ride that elephant and venture into lands unknown. When will you get another chance? By the way darling, do you mind fetching me another drink? Champagne please, with a cherry on the side and foot massage after all that dancing in high heels. My YSL Blouse seemed to take on a life of it’s own, I hate when that happens…Wink wink.

Special Awards to members who have made significant contributions to events this past year went to: Hend Yahya – Chef Volunteer, Kimberly Novkov-Maple Leaf Farms, Pierre Truyoo- Tru Wines, Giovanni del Rosario – Chef Instructor, LA Harbor College.

Photographer Timothy Vechik has been capturing images behind the lens since he was 5, yes, five, and as he says, “He loves to shoot people, but in a good way”. 909-234-7098

1 Comment

  1. Intrepid Culinologist

    December 14, 2012 at 3:59 am

    Reblogged this on The Intrepid Culinologist.

With an Italian background, she cites her Mother and grandmother ( Mamie ) as the major influence of her love for food.  Yes, homemade pasta hung from the clothesline in the kitchen and rolling 100 meat balls for a holiday dinner was the norm.  Raised in Pennsylvania. she spent time in Atlanta, Georgia and ultimately settled along the stunning coast of Laguna Beach, Ca. Self taught in everything, she learned to appreciate the amazing flavors, scents and uses for exotic herbs and spices and applies her knowledge to cooking today. Despite enjoying other creative endeavors like painting, photography and clothing design, she realized she would never love another career the way she loves all the stories surrounding food.  And it's capturing those stories that has not only become her greatest passion but a culinary drug worth passing around!  After all, food is a shared experience and no one better to share it with than the entire world. And thus the Food Stalker was born, utilizing all that passion and her fearlessness to capture even the most impossible stories. It's one thing to write about food, but far more exciting to actually capture it and all those stories that make every scent come to life.  And once she sets out, there's no stopping her, because no one follows that scent better than her---and no telling where she'll end up next.  

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