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News

Police stress need for low speed in school zones

Police stress need for low speed in school zones


Town Crier File Photo
After two recent accidents involving cyclists and motorists, police urge caution – on both sides.

After two recent incidents of vehicles striking student bicyclists, Los Altos Police urge residents to exercise caution whe...

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Schools

Gardner Bullis School debuts new Grizzly Student Center

Gardner Bullis School debuts new Grizzly Student Center


Photo by Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Students line up to check books out of the library in the new Grizzly Student Center at Gardner Bullis School.

Gardner Bullis School opened its new Grizzly Student Center earlier this month, introducing a lea...

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Community

Home improvement workshop scheduled Wednesday (Oct. 29)

The County of Santa Clara is hosting a free informational workshop on 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Los Altos Hills Town Hall, 26379 Fremont Road.

The workshop will offer ways single-family homeowners can increase their homes’ energy efficiency. Eligible i...

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Comment

Off the fence: TC recommends 'yes' on N

The Town Crier initially offered no position on the controversial $150 million Measure N bond on Tuesday’s ballot. But some of the reasons we gave in our Oct. 15 editorial were, on reflection, overly critical and based on inaccurate information.

We ...

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Special Sections

Long-term solutions emerge as water conservation goes mainstream

Long-term solutions emerge as water conservation goes mainstream


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Forrest Linebarger, right, installed greywater and rainwater harvesting systems at his Los Altos Hills home.

With more brown than green visible in her Los Altos backyard, Kacey Fitzpatrick admits that she’s a little e...

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Business

Local realtors scare up money for charity

Local realtors scare up money for charity


Photo courtesy of SILVAR
Realtors Gary Campi and Jordan Legge, from left, joined Nancy Domich, SILVAR President Dave Tonna and Joe Brown to raise funds for the Silicon Valley Realtors Charitable Foundation.

Los Altos and Mountain View realtors raise...

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Books

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mimi Sommers, who works at a Los Altos dentist’s office, recently wrote a children’s book.

A local dental hygienist recently published a book that aims to ease parents and children during a sometimes anxious e...

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People

DAVID S. NIVISON

DAVID S. NIVISON

David S. Nivison, 91 years old, and a resident of Los Altos, California since 1952, died Oct. 16, 2014 at home.  His neighbors had recently honored him as the “Mayor of Russell Ave., in recognition of 62 years of distinguished living” on that ...

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Travel

Falling leaves: Four places in California to see autumn colors

Falling leaves: Four places in California to see autumn colors


Courtesy of Castello di Amorosa
Castello di Amorosa in Calistoga, above, boasts a beautiful setting for viewing fall’s colors – and sampling the vineyard’s wines.

Yes, Virginia, there is fall in California.

The colors pop out in...

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Stepping Out

ECYS opens season Sunday

ECYS opens season Sunday


Ramya Krishna/Special to the Town Crier
The El Camino Youth Symphony rehearses for Sunday’s concert, above.

The El Camino Youth Symphony – under new conductor Jindong Cai – is scheduled to perform its season-opening concert 4 p.m....

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Spiritual Life

Christian Science Reading Room hosts webinar on prayer and healing

Christian Science practitioner and teacher Evan Mehlenbacher is scheduled to present a live Internet webinar lecture, “Prayer That Heals,” 7:30 p.m. Nov. 14 in the Christian Science Reading Room, 60 Main St., Los Altos.

Those interested ...

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Magazine

Local events add color to autumn calendar

Local events add color to autumn calendar


Van Houtte/town crier Visitors make their way through the Children’s Alley.

As Los Altos’ signature Chinese Pistache trees exchange their summer green for vibrant hues of yellow, orange and red in the fall, an abundance of local events also ad...

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Give thanks for California's craft brews


Courtesy of Derek Wolfgram
A high-alcohol, spicy beer complements a Thanksgiving feast.

The approach of the Thanksgiving holiday seems like the perfect opportunity to highlight the versatility of beer as a beverage pairing for all kinds of food. From roasted turkey to pumpkin pie, there is a beer appropriate for every course of your Thanksgiving feast.

If you enjoy the acidity and carbonation that sparkling wine provides to cut through the richness of holiday meals, look no further than The Lost Abbey Saison Blanc. The beer is highly carbonated and crisp with a very dry finish. Saison yeast often produces a peppery spice aroma, which in this case is accentuated by the addition of white pepper during the brewing process. The Lost Abbey also added golden raisins to the Saison Blanc, which are difficult to perceive directly in the flavor or aroma but certainly contribute to the overall complexity of the brew. If you like champagne with your Thanksgiving dinner, try this instead.

At the holidays, many breweries break out the cloves and cinnamon to brew spiced seasonal holiday ales. Not AleSmith Brewing – it celebrates the winter holidays with YuleSmith (Winter) Ale, an impressively hoppy imperial red ale. While I tend not to pair hoppy beers with food (other than hamburgers or pizza), the piney hops of YuleSmith are supported by a subtle caramel sweetness. I would hesitate to call this beer “balanced,” as the hops are clearly the star of the show, but there is enough complexity to pair well with a fall feast. The malt backbone complements the richness of roasted meats, gravy and other Thanksgiving fare, while the resinous hops provide a pleasant contrast and clear the palate for more decadence.

North Coast Brewing Co.’s Brother Thelonious Belgian-style Abbey Ale manages to be simultaneously dry and sweet, largely due to the relatively high levels of attenuation and the fruity esters produced by the Belgian yeast. The yeast interacts with Belgian candi sugar and caramel malts to produce aromas and flavors reminiscent of sweet cherries, dried plums and caramelized figs. Relatively light in body for such a high-alcohol beer (9.4 percent alcohol by volume), Brother Thelonious has a bracing alcohol bite, particularly in the finish. The rich flavor profile pairs equally well with desserts like pumpkin pie and with savory fare like turkey legs or sausage stuffing.

One seasonal brew that seems custom-made for Thanksgiving dinner is The Bruery’s Autumn Maple. The nose is dominated by pumpkin pie spices like cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg, with hints of ripe pear esters from the Belgian yeast. The eponymous maple flavor is not pronounced, but the flavor is moderately sweet, likely from unfermentable sugars in the yams that The Bruery includes in the mash. The spices create an unmistakably autumnal flavor profile. With a little more acidity or bitterness, the beer would pair even better with savory foods. Where this brew really shines is with spiced desserts like pumpkin roll or apple pie. There is noticeable alcohol heat from the 10 percent alcohol by volume – this brew may be even better after a year in the cellar.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. Cheers!

Derek Wolfgram is chief communications officer for the Silicon Valley Sudzers Homebrew Club, which meets the first Friday of each month at a home in Los Altos Hills and welcomes both new beer enthusiasts. For more information, visit sudzers.org.

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