Author: Leslie Westbrook

DUOING IT TOGETHER | Jazzy couple Holly Hofmann and Mike Wofford bring a slice of heaven to Ojai

PICTURED: Pianist Mike Wofford and flautist Holly Hofmann perform at the Ojai Art Center on Nov. 17. If you are a jazz aficionado, you might want to fly, not walk, to Ojai to hear flautist Holly Hofmann and pianist Mike Wofford perform on Nov. 17 at the Ojai Arts Center. The San Diego-based, globetrotting duo recently returned from their “fifth or sixth” tour in New Zealand. Just prior to that, the couple performed at the Oregon Coast Jazz Party, in Newport, where Ms. Hofmann, aka Mrs. Wofford, has been the festival’s music director for the past 13 years. And...

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Puro Italiano to the core

PICTURED: Crostini four ways: smashed cannellini bean, marinated artichoke, traditional tomato and mushroom. Photo by Leslie A. Westbrook Peirano’s Market and Delicatessan 204 E. Main St., Ventura 805-628-9028 www.deliventura.com $4.50-20 My strongest memory of grocery shopping with my Italian-American mother at Santa Monica’s Italian Bay Cities deli is holding my nose from the strong stench of cheese and salumi hanging from the ceiling.  It took time, but I’ve come to love and appreciate these aromas over the years. There’s no stinky cheese smell at Peirano’s Market and Delicatessen. Downtown Ventura is all abuzz with the re-opening of Peirano’s —...

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Flavorful, friendly and fun picnic-style dining

Ojai Rôtie469 E. Ojai Ave., Ojai805-798-9227www.ojairotie.com$9-19 The sign of a successful restaurant, in my book, is one to which you want to return. Despite a somewhat limited menu (with items to go or eat outdoors on the patio), I see many revolutions back to Ojai Rôtie in my future, fate willing. If you like picnics — and flavorful food and chicken and awesome sourdough bread — then you, too, will fall in love with this new spot from Ojai-based Chef Claud Mann and business partner/longtime L.A. restaurateur Lorenzo Nicola. My friend Anne and I popped in just a week...

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Tapas Time at Herzog Wine Cellars

Tierra Sur at Herzog Wine Cellars3201 Camino Del Sol, Oxnard805-983-1560www.herzogwine.comhttp://tierrasuratherzog.com/$7-$20 I’ve been curious for some time about the locally sourced cuisine at Tierra Sur restaurant at Herzog Wine Cellars, located in an industrial park in Oxnard just a few minutes off the 101. A couple of things held me back: the location (a bit inconvenient, especially for imbibing) and the cost (prices aren’t posted on the online menu but I’m here to tell you they are “up there”). When I learned that the winery had launched an afternoon tapas menu in the winery tasting room (adjacent to the smallish...

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Behind the scenes and into The Cave

The Cave Restaurant4435 McGrath St., Suite 301Ventura805-642-9449, thecaveventura.com/restaurant$3-$18 Many of you reading this have probably been to The Cave, the popular, cozy restaurant and wine tasting room tucked inside a warehouse-style wine store (The Ventura Wine Co.) in a Ventura industrial park. The place has a legion of wine and foodie fans. There’s a new executive chef, Henry Martinez, however, who introduced new menu items in January. I visited in March, when the restaurant’s small plates menu (with dishes designed to be shared, and that changes monthly) had one item that remained and has apparently become a favorite: Cool...

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UPCOMING COMMUNITY EVENTS

  1. History Lecture Series: Accommodation and Resistance

    October 15 @ 7:00 pm - December 11 @ 8:30 pm
  2. Artist in Residence: Delesprie

    October 16 @ 3:00 pm - December 4 @ 6:00 pm
  3. Humanizing the Other: Art by Salomón Huerta

    November 1, 2019 @ 8:00 am - January 3, 2020 @ 8:00 pm
  4. Key Frames: A Celebration of Animation & Production Art

    November 8, 2019 @ 10:00 am - January 9, 2020 @ 4:00 pm
  5. ‘Fuenteovejuna,’ or ‘Like Sheep to Water…’

    November 14 @ 8:00 pm - November 24 @ 2:00 pm
  6. Ojai Herbal Symposium: The Wisdom of the Body

    November 16 - November 17
  7. Santa Paws – Ventura

    November 17 @ 10:00 am - 3:00 pm
  8. Morning Stretch to Classic Rock

    November 18 @ 8:00 am - 8:45 am
  9. Dancer’s Body Barre

    November 18 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
  10. Dancer’s Body Barre

    November 18 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm