Author: VCR Staff

SHAKEN & STIRRED | Bamboo Room

PICTURED: The Infatuation from the Bamboo Room in Westlake Village. Photo by Ben Shani by Nancy D. Lackey Shaffer Bamboo Room 30760 Russell Ranch Road, Suite C, Westlake Village 805-852-1080 The press release for the Bamboo Room touts this new Westlake Village hot spot as “a true escape” to “mingle with friends” for “a fun night out.” I’ve no doubt that you’ll have fun here, with or without your buddies. But this is no mere watering hole. This is a refined cocktail lounge of exceptional taste and style, chic and urbane. Sumptuous fabrics in rich colors; benches,...

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SHAKEN & STIRRED | Bank of Italy Cocktail Trust

PICTURED: Giuseppe the Wise and Black Manhattan from Bank of Italy Cocktail Trust. Photo by JT Nakahara by Nancy D. Lackey Shaffer Bank of Italy Cocktail Trust 394 E. Main St., Ventura The Bank of Italy building, on the corner of Main and Oak streets in Downtown Ventura, is a beloved landmark — Ventura Historic Landmark No. 38, to be precise. Built in 1923-24, the architecture is a fine example of the Italian Renaissance Revival style, with Corinthian columns and elaborate terra cotta carvings on the facade. For years, it was the location of Parts Unknown, a...

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ADVICE GODDESS | July 29, 2021

Hollow Sheldon Call me old-fashioned, but I find humility attractive, and I’m disturbed by the lack of it in a guy I’ve been dating. He seems to need to keep telling me how desirable he is, like by mentioning he dated some Instagram model and saying, “I’m used to being the smartest guy in the room,” when he initially lied about going to a top-tier university and had actually failed out of community college. I find his lack of humility to be a big turnoff, but my friends keep telling me not to be stupid: He’s a sweet, considerate...

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IN GOOD TASTE | Beers of Summer

PICTURED: Rosé and cucumber ginger cider from Anna’s Cider in Santa Paula.  by Nancy D. Lackey Shaffer Summertime means hot weather, barbecues and working up a sweat. What better way to quench your thirst than with a cold brew? Ventura County has plenty of options for ales, IPAs, hard seltzers and more, and every brewery in the area is making the most of summer fruits and flavors. Due to the nature of craft brewing, some of these products are available in small-batch, limited edition quantities — and that means some of the best are likely to sell out....

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SHAKEN & STIRRED | Rabalais’ Bistro

PICTURED: Sazerac and French 75 at Rabalais’ Bistro. Photo by N. Lackey Shaffer Rabalais’ Bistro 861 E. Main St., Santa Paula 805-525-2109  When one thinks of Rabalais’ Bistro, the things that probably come to mind are beignets, fried green tomatoes and po’ boy sandwiches — classic Southern-fried cuisine that has made the Cajun and Creole restaurant in downtown Santa Paula renowned inside and outside the county. Over the summer, the now 10-year-old establishment found yet another way to distinguish itself, with the opening of a New Orleans-style cocktail bar.  The bar shares space with Rabalais’ coffee counter and...

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