Sunday, June 6, 2010

It's been so long

Yes, so I have been missing in action. BUT now I am back. Was working on another Blog...... check it out. Heavy stuff, doesn't mean I am not fun, just means I am clearing my mind!!!!!!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Brazil's Heart Beat Pounds LA!

When one thinks of Brazil the images that grace ones mind evoke nothing but beauty, pleasure and a place where happiness fills the air. Beautiful women in micro mini bikinis, tall, dark and handsome men playing ball on the beach and just the sense of pure bliss. What else do we think about? CARNIVAL! The most recognised pre-lent festivity of the world.
For some of us we are not fortunate enough to magically be elevated to a state of euphoria as those drummers engrave their beats into you soul. Next best thing..... This Saturday at Club Nokia in Hollywood. This year Brazilian Nites Productions brings it's 10th Annual Brazilian Carnival to the heart of LA., an event that can not be missed. This years event has had the most promotion it has ever had including a main segment on KTLA's Morning news. I am so excited to attend this event. To be with my people, to be with people that enjoy my culture. It is truly a treat for every one, to thrust yourselves into a culture that is so fixated in living life with so much ALEGRIA (happiness).
This year is going to have the first of many new attractions including a Bloco party hosted by Samba 4 U founder Diane Yakimovicz. A BLOCO DE CARNAVAL is simply put a party within a party where students as well as any party reveler ready to where the authentic shirt of the group and dance the night away. In sense you become part of the show itself.
When you buy your ticket you will get the ABADA(t-shirt with blocos name). With ABADA you will be allowed in the VIP Dance Floor area, reserved for the BLOCO. Tickets for the bloco will be $40 including your ABADA T-shirt $48 at the door.

At the stroke of 12am Trio Eletrico Armandinho, Dodô and Osmar Band from the state of Bahia will hit the stage. Trio Eletrico revolutionized Brazil's Carnaval some 60 years ago. Originating in Brazil's northern state of Bahia. These days colorful Big rigs are decorated and rigged as a stage on wheels with all kinds of famous Brazilian performers singing and dancing in a parade style for the whole town to see."Armandinho is well-respected around the world for his guitar prowess and is constantly referred to as the Brazilian Jimi Hendrix." This will truly be a fantastic show on it own.

Don't think I would leave out the Samba dancers and the vibrant drummers that make the feet automatically dance an the heart pound to the rhythm of the bass. By the end of the night you will have sweat your sorrows away and only remember the beautiful feathered dancers. Along with the dancers their will be a variety of Brazilian dishes, Craft booths and of coarse Brazil's signature drink Caipirinhas sponsored by Brazil's own Leblon Cachaca. MMMMMMM So very good. Capoeira, and world renowned Djs spinning old school Brazilian music to more modern Brazilian funk and Samba techno.
The event will take place at Club Nokia @ LA Live on Saterday, Feburary 20th from 8:00pm to 2:00am
Prices $38 General admission $65 for preferred seating and lounge.
Again this is an event that can not be missed. LA watch out, Brazilians come out a night!
Club Nokia @ LA Live
800 W. Olympic Blvd.
Los Angeles

Brazilian Nites Productions
(818) 566-1111

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Argentina meets Brazil

One evening, about a year ago. I was checking out my new neighborhood and stumbled into downtown Brea. There was plenty of little shops to distract me, but something in the air was causing my nose to have a mind of it's own. The more I refused to follow, the more the intensity of the aromas grew. I could not help but to think about how much the smells reminded me of my grandmothers farm in Santa Caterina, Brazil. I looked to my left, across the street from the movie theatre and to my amazement I spotted it, "Carvao Grill". Was it a Brazilian restaurant so close to home? I was so excited and even though I had stuffed my face with a huge Coldstone ice cream I had to check this place out.
As soon as I walked in, I melted. The smell of the carvao was overpowering and so nostalgic. Carvao is the Portuguese word for charcoal and a method of cooking that is primarily used by the Gauchos of Southern Brazil and Argentina. Where the meat is slowly roasted over the fire for hours. MMMMM so good. I asked for the wine menu and was so excited to find that they carried Pascual Toso, Malbec, a delicious Argentine wine that I have only found in New York or Sao Paulo. I knew this was going to be good. The more I looked over the menu, the more I realised that this was not solely a Brazilian restaurant but a fusion of Gaucho styles of Brazil and Argentina.
When the Waiter came to the table, I noticed the accent and asked where he was from. He told me he was the owner and he is from Argentina but lived many years in Brazil. We instantly had thousands of things to say to each other. There is something absolutely beautiful when you meet others from South America. The glow in the eyes and a true feeling of welcome is amazing. Piaggio, as I would later find out was his name and he told me how he truly fell in love with Brazil, it's culture and mainly it's food.
After stuffing my face with empanadas and the Bahia Shrimp, I headed over to the bar of course. Where Piaggio made me one Caipirinha after another. Now for him being an Argentinian and making the best Caipirinhas I ever had was saying allot. Not to mention my most favorite cocktail that I have never seen in America, the Pisco Sour. A mixture of Pisco, a liquor distilled from grapes, lime juice, egg whites, simple syrup, bitters blended together to make heaven in a glass. The cocktails where reasonably priced and the plethora of Taxi Cabs outside made it even more enticing to spend away.
The staff was amazing, service was prompt and the food is excellent. To top it off, there was a live musician playing Bossa Nova making the dining experience even more enjoyable. The restaurant hosts many event including a monthly wine tasting, with an even more extensive wine menu. Live jazz Sunday Brunch and they also offer catering for every event.
This has become a regular hangout for me and my family. We go to the theatre and than cross the street for some delicious food and conversation. This is definitley a place to go if you love Steak, culture and just a feeling of calm and welcome.

Carvao Grill
210 W Birch St
Ste 102

Brea, CA 92821
(714) 990-9140

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Stinky nudie bar!

So when you go to a nudie bar, your expecting to see at least semi attractive women with decent bodies dancing seductively to some old Genuwine "Pony" song. Wasn't sure if I was really gonna blog about this place but after what I saw I want to make sure no one else has to bare witness to the horrors I saw tonight. So I heard of this place in Anaheim called Angels sports bar, thinking it was a sports bar we comfortably strolled in only to find ourselves in what looks like a run down Czech brothel. It smelled like everyone in the place had simultaneously opened a can of tune. YUKE!
We are in now, might as well get a drink. Of coarse we all know the rules, you have to buy drinks for the girls or from the girls so they can make money too, but these chicks, I think that is what they were, were so persistent and annoying I ended up making it a point not to buy anything from them.
Music comes on and a what looks to be a 45 year old cougar approaches the stage, in her barely fitting outfit, muffin top and all, she began to dance and then..........fell off stage because she was so drunk. Now this chick was one of the better looking ones at the whole place. I saw alot of men coming in and the girls were extremely willing to be taken OUT of the bar. I think this is an underground prostitution facility lol.
I am all about enjoying a night with the girls throwing money at strippers but only if they are worth my dollar and this place, people I am telling you was one of the worst places I think I have ever been too. Don't believe me, check for yourself. But remember to wash up after, the smell of tuna will remain with you. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH
Signing off confused and traumatised

Angel's Sports Bar
(714) 630-0810
3020 E Coronado St,
Anaheim, CA 92806

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Karaoke Bar

Before I go on any further, I want to make sure everyone understands how much I despise karaoke bars. A bunch of people dreaming they were stars or being seen by some famous record produce. Sure that would be nice but it never happens, or some washed up cougar filled to the limit with cocktails singing her own version of YMCA. Not the scene for me, BUT, when I was dragged into Boardwalk 11 in Los Angeles all my preconceived notions of the infamous karaoke bars were all washed down with the many beers I engulfed that night.

I drove around for about 20 minutes trying to find it. I was not aware that this place was in a strip mall. I was immediately turned off even more by the idea. But research is research, I could not turn back now. Once inside you couldn't even tell you were in a little mall. The people were nice and the food smelled great. There was tons of people inside, everyone obviously drunk to the top, but a very laid back crowd. The mix of people was outrageous, young 20 somethings to a couple that looked like they were in their late 70's. It was perfect. After a few drinks I even mustered up the courage to rap Vanilla Ice's, Ice Ice Baby!.

The food was great. There is everything from finger foods like edamame to a full steak dinner. Drinks, where do I begin. Where they really had me was with all the beers on tap. My favorite, Arrogant Bastard Ale. MMM

The Boardwalk 11 was featured as a finalist on the Maxims Greatest American Neighborhood Bar Search. Given the bartenders and waitresses, I could see why. There is a small patio outside so all you smokers and conjugate as you wait your turn to sing. Monday thru Thursday Karaoke starts at 9:30 pm to 1:30 am, Friday and Saturdays it begins at 8:00pm.

The only draw back to this place was parking. I found it easy to just park using the meters on national. Happy Hour is great, so I heard. $1.00 of every pint and let me remind you how delicious the Arrogant Bastard was. There is a 2 drink minimum or you pay a $10.00 cover. No big deal given the place was so much fun.

I will definitely go to this place again and this time I won't be kicking and screaming. Hope to see you there. Ciao

Baordwalk 11

10433 National Blvd. #5

Los Angeles, Ca 90034


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Brazilian Flavor in West LA

So I will try not to be biased on this place, but it will undoubtedly be so difficult. The first time I went out to a club in America was here. It reminded me of home. From the moment you walk through the fence, the sidewalk is lined in Copacabana's signature black and white zig zagged tiles. Small tables outside to enjoy the night. This is a family restaurant but elements of the place by far fall through the category of a local dive. Children can come in but at 10pm the dancing begins not sure if you want to keep them inside.

Dress is casual, a laid back style of a ocean groove of people. Ahh People, not only are their Brazilians here, there are Asians and Jamaicans, whites and Cubans. This is a place where South American and Caribbean people can come around pretend they are home for one night. The people are your Friends and show you what it means to come from a country where hospitality comes first.

So lets get into the food. This place serves the typical food that one would eat as a late night snack, a hangover buster if you will. Lots of flour lots of frying. Never forget the famous Feijoada, a delicious black bean stew cooked in an array of left over and dried meats. MMMMM Slide that down with an ice cold Caipirinha and you are set.

Dancing is the main thing here. Although the place is small. It reminds me of the street parties we would have in Brazil that would go on late into the night. After that go get some sandwiches and pass out on the beach all day long and do it all over again the next night. Oh to be young and in Brazil. Anyhow Wed-Thurs is Cuban Night and at 8:30 you get front row to some salsa classes that really show you how to get down or should I say get those Hips a going. Friday night is Strictly Reggae night. Several performers come in and the place is packed. Of coarse we will not forget that Friday - Sunday is Brazilian, Brazilian, Brazilian. Live costumed dancers parade around while you engulf your third round of caipirinhas. The dancing is unstoppable. The feeling you get in your veins when you hear those drummers is indescribable. I hope that you can truly make it down here. this is a place I love to go, so let me know if you will be there and I will be to. I love to see the faces of people I just met embrace my culture and bathe themselves in the glorious feelings my people and music make you feel. CIAO

10717 Venice Blvd.
Los Angeles, Ca 90031

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Tiny Tiki-ti on Sunset

So my hunt for the best place in L.A. is surely not over. But after 1 week of searching and not being able to narrow it down I thought I would talk about one place in particular I thought was rather, well, intersting to say the least. So you wouldn't belive this place is on Sunset Blvd. Never heard of it myself, the Tiki-Ti. This place is so nostalgic, so alive and most of all the coolest little dive bar I have ever seen on the west coast. This little building stands alone and inside resembles something you find in 1960's South Pacific!

There are certain things you need to know before you take the dive into this place.
1st, CASH ONLY. Don't ask me why but it totaly fits into the atmosphere of this place.
2nd, If you are expecting to find some swank place, you are in for a rude awekening. This place is small, super small, super duper small. But the people are great and usualy filled with locals but ready to greet any newcomer that comes into the door.
3rd, The hours are strange, Wed-Sat. Not conventional to say the least but works out for the owners.
4th, and probably most abnormal in cali, you can smoke inside. Yes you heard me, smoking indoors. Not a smoker myself but found it nice not to have to sit alone while my puffer friends disappeared for a bit.
5th, and i would say most important, last call at this place is 12;30 am. Owners say it because it is only run by them (3 dudes) they need to clean up and get ready for the next day. Don't let this put a damper on things, remember you are on Sunset Blvd.

There is a variety of drinks at this place, but here are 3 of the drinks that made the top:
Ray's Mistake which was obviously a drink created on accident. Than there is the Blood & Sand, if you order this one, the bartenders all chant "Toro, Toro" don't ask me why either.
Finally there is the Stealth. One word for this if sucking on the back end of a jet liners fuel pipe is your sort of thing this is your drink.

This place was awesome and I hope that you will check it out for yourselves. It was hard to believe a place so authentic existed in the monotonous little corner of So Cal called Los Angeles.
4427 W. Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles, Ca 90027