Tue09162014

News

Council approves directional signs for Los Altos' Woodland Plaza

Council approves directional signs for Los Altos' Woodland Plaza


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Los Altos City Council last week approved the installation of two new directional signs on Foothill Expressway pointing motorists to the Woodland Plaza Shopping District.

The Los Altos City Council voted unanimou...

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Schools

New head of curriculum’s ideologies align with LASD

New head of curriculum’s ideologies align with LASD


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Edsel Clark, new Los Altos School District assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction, above, facilitates a junior high mathematics curriculum meeting last week.

Edsel Clark, Ed.D., new assistant superintend...

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Community

Closing reception caps Foothill photo show on rural China

Closing reception caps Foothill photo show on rural China


From IncredibleTravelPhotos.com
Jacque Kae’s “Mischievous” is one of the many photographs on display at Foothill College this month.

Photographs of the land and culture of Huangshan and Zhangjiajie, China, are on exhibit through Sept. 26 at t...

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Sports

Spartans shine in opener

Spartans shine in opener


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mountain View High’s Frank Kapp snares a touchdown pass from quarterback Owen Mountford in Friday’s win.

Leading by a point at halftime, the Mountain View High football team outscored visiting Del Mar 20-0 the rest of...

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Comment

A look ahead to the Nov. 4 election: Editorial

Election season is upon us. In Los Altos, we have three major local races ahead – two seats on the Los Altos City Council, and three seats each on the Los Altos School District and Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District boards of tr...

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Special Sections

Renovation complete,  Villa Siena looks to future

Renovation complete, Villa Siena looks to future


Above and Below Photos Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier; Left Photo Courtesy of Villa Siena
Villa Siena in Mountain View recently underwent a $35 million face-lift. The five-year project expanded their senior living community’s space and ability to serv...

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Business

Transitioning from postage to pets

Transitioning from postage to pets


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
A new Pet Food Express store is scheduled to open at the Blossom Valley Shopping Center this month.

A site that previously existed to meet postal service needs will soon have an entirely different purpose – serving pe...

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Books

‘The Humans’ transcends alien genre to glean human insights

‘The Humans’ transcends alien genre to glean human insights


A good story about aliens is always great fun to read – after all, it’s only by attempting to understand the human race from another perspective that we can see ourselves more objectively.

But readers who might be tempted to dismiss ye...

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People

JEANNE PACKARD

After suffering a stroke in May, Jeanne Packard died August 10, 2014 at age 83. She was born in 1931 in Berlin, Germany, the only child of Emily Channel and Frank Howe Packard of Chicago, IL. Jeanne is survived by 5 great grandchildren. She was a lon...

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Travel

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska


Sandy Powell/Special to the Town Crier
Los Altos resident and bird photographer Sandy Powell recently visited Homer, Alaska, to photograph Sandhill cranes, below. While there, Powell also encountered moose, left.

Los Altos resident Sandy Powell, a...

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Stepping Out

'Trailer Park' opens in Los Altos

'Trailer Park' opens in Los Altos


Courtesy of Los
The cast of Los Altos Stage Company’s “The Great American Trailer Park Musical” includes, from left, Mylissa Malley as Lin, Vanessa Alvarez as Betty, and Christina Bolognini as Pickles. Altos Stage Company

Los Altos Stage Company...

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Spiritual Life

9/11 survivor Michael Hingson finds purpose

Imagine walking down 78 flights of stairs – 1,463 individual steps. You are in imminent danger as you walk, unsure whether you can make it out of the building before it collapses or explodes. Struggling for each breath, you smell the heavy sten...

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Magazine

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living


Courtesy of Spectrum Interior Design
In place of a more traditional fireplace, this modern living room features a linear-flame firebox that emits heat while offering a sculpturelike design element.

After traveling the world and visiting a host...

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Tis the season for flawless food & wine pairings


Photo By: Sarah Manning/Special to the Town Crier
Photo Sarah Manning/Special To The Town Crier

Great holiday parties are elevated by great food, and great food is lonely without equally excellent wine. But while many of us eat and drink by an ancient set of rules – red wine with red meat, white wine with fish, for example – we’re often stumped when it comes to throwing a brilliant holiday bash.

The task of pairing food and wine for guests can be daunting. But it needn’t be. Sam Pompei, a Los Altos native and importer/distributor with Wine Bridge Imports, said feeling intimidated is unnecessary. Pompei spent two years after college traveling the world and working with wine – production, exports, tourism and marketing included – and picked up some tricks along the way.

Heed Pompei’s tips for your best holiday bash yet.

Five golden rules for pairing food and wine

1. Pick the food first. Then choose a wine to pair with it. It’s a lot more difficult to pick the wine first and in doing so, you limit yourself. With food, you have many different elements to work with – fruit, spice, herbs and meat – which can be highlighted individually and accentuated by a great wine.

2. Let food be the focus. Never try to outdo the food with the wine. Build your wine selection around the food you’re planning to cook. Wine is the supplement that either complements, offends or falls flat next to your dish. Hint: Wines with more acidity are best for food pairing, especially if your dish contains a lot of fat.

3. Branch out. We all have our favorite wines that seem to go with just about anything. Be careful, however, that you don’t force a pair together. The trick is to widen your view to the limitless possibilities and be adventurous. Try something new.

4. There’s no wrong choice. Don’t let anybody tell you that you’re wrong to select certain pairings. Light reds can be delicious with oily salmon, for example. It’s about what you like, not what you’re supposed to do. Have fun, enjoy the process and don’t make it too difficult on yourself.

5. Ask for help. There are many educated people out there who would love to help you. Seek out specialty wine shops or the wine section at your local gourmet grocery store for knowledgeable advisers. It’s their job to know the wine, and they love collaborating. Don’t limit yourself to your own knowledge.

In case you need a little more guidance, following are a few unique and delicious pairings for the holiday season with Pompei’s commentary. Whether you follow them precisely or use them as inspiration for your own creations, you’re sure to delight guests.

Go-to holiday food and wine pairings

• Sancerre from France with herbed goat cheese (never gets old!).

• Aged Hunter Valley Semillon from Australia with fresh oysters (classic is champagne with oysters, but if you want a real treat, try the Semillon).

• Central Otago Pinot Noir from New Zealand with a Christmas ham (phenomenal).

For more information, email Pompei at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

 

Sarah Manning is a Los Altos High School and University of San Francisco graduate who blogs about her culinary adventures at www.thechocolatefigSF.com.

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