Fri08012014

News

"Brown is the new green," says local water district


Lina Broydo/Special to the Town Crier
Are downtown Los Altos flower pots getting too much water? The Santa Clara Valley Water District plans to hire “water cops” to discourage overwatering.

The Santa Clara Valley Water District is spending nearl...

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Schools

Foothill camps prepare local students for STEM careers

Foothill camps prepare local students for STEM careers


Photos Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Middle school students make robotic hands using 3-D printers during a STEM Summer Camp at Foothill College.

From designing roller coasters to developing biodegradable plastics, high school students received an i...

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Community

Local entrepreneur opens home to Afghan and Rwandan women

Local entrepreneur opens home to Afghan and Rwandan women


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Businesswomen Joan Mazimhaka of Rwanda, third from left, and Fakhria Ibrahimi of Afghanistan, in orange, traveled to the U.S. with a 26-woman delegation through the Peace Through Business program.

Employees scoop ice ...

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Comment

Moving on: The Rockey Road

Just over a month ago, we decided to put our house on the market. My husband and I had been tossing around the idea of moving back to the area where we grew up, which is only approximately 40 minutes from here. Of course, Los Altos is a great place t...

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Business

Halo heads to Los Altos: Blow-dry bar founder opens new First Street location Monday

Halo heads to Los Altos: Blow-dry bar founder opens new First Street location Monday


ElLie Van Houtte/ Town Crier
Armed with blow dryers, Halo founder Rosemary Camposano, left, and store manager Nikki Thomas prepare for the blow-dry bar’s grand opening on First Street Monday.

A blow-dry bar is set to open downtown Monday, and i...

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Books

"Frozen in Time" chronicles harrowing WWII rescue attempts


Many readers can’t resist a true-life adventure story, especially those that shine a spotlight on people who exhibit supreme courage in the face of adversity and end up surviving – or not – against the odds.

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People

DR. ALFRED HUGHES

Long time Los Altos resident, Dr. Alfred Hughes, died May 1st after a long illness. Dr. Hughes was born in 1927 in Maspeth, NY. He served in the US Army from 1945-6, attended Brooklyn Polytechnic University, then graduated from Reed College in Portla...

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Travel

Travel Tidbit: Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe offers spa getaway

Travel Tidbit: Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe offers spa getaway


Courtesy of Ritz-Carlton
The Ritz-Carlton in Lake Tahoe offers fall getaway packages that include spa treatments and yoga classes.

Fall in North Lake Tahoe boasts crisp mornings and opportunities to spend quality time in the mountains. Specially ...

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Stepping Out

'Wizard' winds down at Bus Barn

'Wizard' winds down at Bus Barn


Town Crier file photo
Local actors rehearse a scene from “The Wizard of Oz.”

Los Altos Youth Theatre and Los Altos Stage Company’s collaborative production of “The Wizard of Oz” is slated to close Sunday at Bus Barn Theater, 97 Hillview Ave.

T...

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Spiritual Life

Stanford University appoints new dean for religious life

Stanford University appoints new dean for religious life


Shaw

Stanford University named the Very Rev. Dr. Jane Shaw, dean of Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, its new dean for religious life.

Provost John Etchemendy announced Shaw’s appointment July 21, adding that she also will join the faculty in...

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Magazine

Festival features fun for everyone

Festival features fun for everyone


TOWN CRIER FILE PHOTO
The Los Altos Arts & Wine Festival boasts more than 375 craft and arts booths.

This weekend’s 35th annual Los Altos Arts & Wine Festival promises to be jam-packed with fun activities for just about everyone. The eve...

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Summertime and the sipping is easy: Pairing wine with outdoor dining


Photo By: Courtesy of Christine Moore
Photo Courtesy Of Christine Moore

White wines pair well with the vegetables and side salads of a grilled evening.

My neighborhood is buzzing with the sounds of summer these days. I’m not talking about ice-cream truck melodies or Marco Polo games. I mean the hefting of newly filled propane tanks from car trunks, the gentle spreading out of ash-laden, glowing-hot coals and the sizzle of “What’s for dinner?” hitting the grill. It’s time to dine outdoors, and that means stocking up on wine.

While Memorial Day may officially kick off grilling season, outdoor cooking hits its stride around July 4. And thanks to our enduring California summers, we can make good use of the barbecue well past September.

This is a great time of year to practice your wine-pairing skills. Grilling and barbecuing provide opportunities to celebrate regional and seasonal foods, and pairing that food with local wines can truly amplify the pleasure of your outdoor meals.

What you drink with your food should be considered an ingredient of the meal. Thoughtful pairing can have as much impact on the joy of food as any other key element of the dish.

To help with your pairing endeavors, below I list some of the great varietals produced in California and the foods they complement.

The reds

When it comes to cooking techniques, barbecuing, grilling and smoking do more than just cook the food. They are transformative because they impart flavors – smokiness into chicken or sweetness into beef, for example. The flavors they infuse make many would-be white-wine foods cry out for red. I like serving young reds that aren’t too complex.

• Unabashedly adept at going well with food, Pinot Noir has ample spice and fruit characteristics that allow it to break traditional rules of wine pairing, meaning that Pinot Noir goes equally well with meat or fish. It is especially suited for summertime sipping, with its light body ideal for the season.

I use Pinot Noir as my go-to wine when I’m invited to a friend’s for a barbecue. And a California Pinot, with earth and floral notes, is what I open when serving grilled sausages or salmon.

Worth a try: 2009 Clos LaChance Santa Cruz Mountains Pinot Noir

• Zinfandel can be paired with a variety of red meats and does amazing things to smoky flavors. Plus, because it can be slightly sweet, Zinfandel is the wine you want to serve if you are a barbecue-sauce lover or have a baked-bean recipe you’re planning to feature.

Worth a try: 2011 Peachy Canyon Incredible Red Zinfandel

• A medium-bodied, fruit-forward Merlot finds its perfect match in barbecued pork chops and chicken. It’s a great varietal to pour if you’re having burgers, too.

Worth a try: 2010 Buena Vista Merlot Carneros

The whites

Outdoor eating weather generally means rising temperatures. As the mercury edges up, the pleasures of chilled wine beckon. In addition to working well with many side salads, white wines can elevate the main course of barbecues.

• Sauvignon Blanc in all its citrusy glory is wonderful with grilled white fish, shrimp and other shellfish prepared over a flame.

Worth a try: 2011 Robert Mondavi Fumé Blanc (remember that in California, Sauvignon Blanc is sometimes called Fumé Blanc)

• Unoaked Chardonnay served alongside a platter of grilled vegetables will please backyard diners. Chardonnay is full-bodied enough to complement the caramelized and charred deliciousness of the veggies.

Worth a try: 2011 Mer Soleil Silver Unoaked Chardonnay

• If you’re using a spicy marinade, open a bottle of Riesling. An off-dry Riesling would both lift and tame the spices in jerk chicken.

Worth a try: 2012 Trefethen Dry Riesling

Each suggestion under the “Worth a try” wines is under $30 and should be easy to find in local markets.

Mountain View resident Christine Moore is learning more about wine every day. To read her blog, visit sheepishsommelier.blogspot.com.

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