Monday, June 25, 2018

5 Reasons the Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch Should Be Your Next Outdoor Adventure Destination

Photography by Eddie Sanchez

If you live in Los Angeles, your idea of an outdoor adventure probably involves a long drive through traffic just to get to Runyon Canyon for a hike on a trail that has now been paved. Once you reach the top, you're semi-satisfied as you take a deep breath of that city air, close your eyes, and listen to the sounds of cell phones, cars, and music blasting. Not quite what you had in mind for a relaxing and rejuvenating outdoor adventure is it?

Luckily, only a few hours away from the hustle and bustle of the city, awaits a great outdoor adventure trip that includes hikes, stargazing, and s'mores around the campfire! So, before you head back to Runyon again for your nature fix, consider getting on a plane and discovering a whole new outdoor adventure in Colorado. It's a place with fresh mountain air and green hills adorned with yellow wild flowers. Here you can listen to the singing of birds and quite possibly the growling of a bear. You'll be amazed to see that you can have the most memorable experience with nature without sacrificing the resort comforts that you're used to in a city like Los Angeles. Yes, you can have it all and to convince you, I've listed
five reasons why you should highly consider The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch for your next outdoor adventure getaway.


There's nothing like enjoying a mountain adventure in the luxurious comfort of world-class Ritz-Carlton accommodations. Each room captures the beauty of Beaver Creek or Vail Valley and evokes lodge-inspired luxury with modern touches. Relax in a large soaking tub in your spacious marble bathroom after watching the sunset from your furnished balcony. You'll have no trouble falling asleep to the warm glow of the fireplace in what you may consider as the most comfortable bed you've slept in. It's easy to enjoy the great outdoors when you can retreat to the great indoors.


Dining at The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch is reason enough to jump on a flight and experience elevated traditional mountain cuisine in a breathtaking setting. Locally sourced ingredients that highlight the resort's surroundings are the main star here, so even your food is fitting of the impressive outdoor mountains that surround you. Dishes like elk chops, bison tenderloin, and Colorado Striped bass are a must for the ultimate Alpine gourmand dinner experience. Garden dishes in season such as Summer succotash or salt roasted Colorado beets are the perfect way to round out your Colorado culinary experience. It's without question that the food is absolutely delicious and the spaces they are served in are a beautiful reflection of the great outdoors surrounding the resort. 

WYLD offers an eclectic menu of flavorful Alpine cuisine. 

Buffalos focuses on seasonal dishes from regional farms and features Colorado specialties.

Anderson's Cabin is a preserved century-old log cabin from one of the early founders of the area. It offers a unique private dining experience for up to 14 guests. 

Bison tenderloin with parsnip chips served on a hot salt block. 

Colorado striped bass with fennel and arugula salad. 

Elk chops with marinated blistered tomatoes. 

Burrata with braised peaches and house granola. 

Salt roasted Colorado beets with pickled strawberry, haystack chèvre, rye croutons, and strawberry balsamic reduction. 

Bison burger with bacon onion jam. 

Elk sausage prepared three ways. 

Banana caramel semifreddo pops paired with moscato. 

Paulie's Plunge - Cazadores silver, lime juice, agave nectar, Mexican lager. 


A Forbes Four-Star Spa, year-round heated pool, fitness center with amazing views, and a whiskey & cigar lounge - those are amenities you won't find at a typical outdoor cabin getaway. Add to the fact that The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch holds very high standards, and you have access to some of the finest amenities of any resort. The luxury spa is the ideal place to workout those tired muscles after a long day hiking. For the finest experience possible, The Ritz-Carlton Club lounge offers customized experiences for Club level guests and is a great space to stop in for breakfast, and small bites throughout your stay. For the whiskey connoisseur, Bachelors Lounge offers sessions to sip and savor spirits including the resort's proprietary bourbon. 

The spa's relaxation room.

Spin indoors with views of the outdoors. 

Bachelors Lounge, Vail Valley’s only cigar lounge, offers signature cocktails and a selection of sommelier-curated wines. 


There's no shortage of activities and things to do at The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch. A guided hike is the perfect way to soak up the majestic views of Bachelor Gulch while learning fascinating facts of the plants and animals that thrive during the beautiful Summer season. There's also an opportunity for an adult summer camp experience with craft making like Lager and Leatherworking, Pinot and Painting, and Whiskey & Woodburning. Yes, sip on a glass of wine and paint the beautiful view in front of you, or sip on local craft brews while learning how to stamp leather - creating a one-of-a-kind souvenir to take back home. Even the kiddos have something to do through the resort's Ritz-Kids program where they go on hikes, and even pan for gold. Nearby the property, you have access to rafting, fly fishing, and horseback riding. Even your four-legged friends are welcomed to experience something at the resort. There's something for everyone in the family. 

Lager and Leather-working - sip on Colorado local beers while creating a stamped leather souvenir. 

Bachelor - the resort's canine ambassador. 


The resort is tucked away on a peaceful mountainside between Beaver creek and Arrowhead. Bachelor Gulch, named for its original settlers, is the perfect resort setting year-round. Access to hiking trails and nearby wildlife and plants will give you a glimpse of nature that Los Angeles doesn't offer. Plus at night, you'll see more stars in the sky than on Hollywood Blvd. The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch is a relaxing, luxurious lodge-style resort that offers all the comforts you need in a setting that has all the outdoor adventure you are looking for. 

Chairlifts during a summer night of stargazing.

The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch
0130 Daybreak Ridge Rd
Avon, CO 81620

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Special thanks to The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch for collaborating with Hungry in LA. As always, the content and opinions expressed here are entirely our own.

Monday, May 7, 2018

My Experience at the Gourmandise School + My Favorite Recipe from the Class

Photography by Eddie Sanchez

We’ve all had a cooking fail. We start out in the kitchen thinking we're on our way to beating Bobby Flay and end up with a dry chicken breast or rubbery salmon over bland rice. Just because we see how easy things look on TV or Facebook videos, doesn’t mean we’re going to be the next Top Chef. If you're  beginner cook like me, it takes direction, instruction, practice, and passion to be able to learn the skills to cook well. You probably have the last part down, no one follows more food Instagram accounts than you but you’ll need the help of some pros to get you to tap into the skills you need to take your cooking to the next level. Good thing there’s The Gourmandise School of Sweets and Savories. 

Located in the Santa Monica Place Shopping Center, The Gourmandise School offers hands-on cooking classes in LA for all levels of cooking - beginners to pros. There are several baking and cooking classes, including professional series and special food workshops. Unlike just learning recipes online, the school is designed to teach you how to develop your culinary intuition and create amazing meals. You acquire the knowledge and skills on not just how to cook a specific dish, but how ingredients and cooking methods relate to one another. The classes are taught by chefs, and industry professionals who are passionate about teaching you their specialties and techniques. 

One of those instructors is Chef Carol Cotner Thompson who has been teaching people how to cook for over 25 years. She recently led the "Learn How To Cook" 10-week series that I had the pleasure of attending along with a group of home cooks from all levels, some pursuing a culinary career while others, like myself were wanting to take their cooking skills to a new place. The 10 week series was broken down into 10 main topics that helped you master that technique or ingredient by the end of the class. The class, approximately 3 and half hours started with a quick lecture of the ingredients and cooking techniques we were going to learn. Chef Carol explained everything in a way that was easy to understand and when the lecture was over and we were at our cooking stations, I felt confident and assured that I could cook the dishes we were set out to execute that day. Every class ended with delicious meals that resulted in leftovers to bring home. I know my wife looked forward to the days I was in class because of those tasty leftovers I got to bring home!

Chef Carol Cotner Thompson - one of the instructors at The Gourmandise School. 

The Gourmandise School was a game changer for me. Prior to that, I could say I dabbled in the kitchen but knew I definitely needed to up my game. After just the first week in the “Knife Skills class,” I felt confident and actually looked forward to chopping veggies and handling a knife like a pro. The skills I learned in the several cooking methods Chef Carol taught us has been invaluable to me as I continue cooking. Above all, my love and passion for food has intensified and I truly enjoy cooking for myself and for others. I’m so grateful for the experience and know that it’s just the beginning to a lifelong culinary journey of gatherings with friends and family over amazing meals

Below is one of my favorite dishes from one of the cooking classes. I find myself making this more often than I should! It’s that good and so simple to make. Read on for the full recipe. 

The Gourmandise School has a specialty shop with the best culinary tools you'll need in the kitchen as well as tasty eats. 

Spaghetti all'Amatriciana

2 tablespoons: olive oil
2 ounces  of diced guanciale or pancetta
1/2 red onion, small dice
2 cloves garlic, sliced
1/2 teaspoons of hot red pepper flakes 
1 cup of crushed tomatoes (preferrably San Marzano) 
1/4 lb of spaghetti or bucatini
1/4 cup grated of Pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese 
1 ounce of butter 
Render the pancetta in olive oil.
Add the onions and continue to cook until the onions are soft.
Add the pepper flakes and garlic and continue to cook one minute.
Add the tomatoes and simmer for fifteen minutes.
To serve, toss the cooked spaghetti, cheese and butter. Season with salt and black pepper.

The Gourmandise School of Sweets & Savories
395 Santa Monica Place
Santa Monica CA 90401

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Special thanks to The Gourmandise School for collaborating with Hungry in LA. As always, the content and opinions expressed here are entirely our own.

Monday, April 2, 2018

Italy Is Closer Than You Think - Escape to The Resort at Pelican Hill

Photography by Eddie Sanchez

You remember that Italy trip that you’ve been planning for ages? You know, the one where you’re at a seaside village staying in a villa perched on a hill that overlooks the water? It’s the trip where you are eating hand made pastas and drinking luscious velvety rich DOCG wines. This is the luxurious trip you have been waiting for and you only need to travel about an hour away from LA when you’re visiting The Resort at Pelican Hill in Newport Beach. 

The Resort at Pelican Hill is one of the world’s finest Five-Star, Five-Diamond destinations offering service and luxury like no other. Sitting on 504 acres with magnificent ocean views, the opulent Italian Renaissance architecture, inspired by Palladio, transports you from California City hustle to seaside Italian village harmony. It’s your escape to a beautiful serene coastal setting where authentic Northern Italian cuisine, luxurious poolside cabanas, award winning spa,  and premier golf courses await. This is your ultimate getaway. 

S T A Y 

Over 200 spacious bungalow guest rooms and suites, as well as 128 Villas are available to call this place your new home away from home. They are lavishly appointed with large walk -in showers, deep soaking marble tubs, fire places framed by Italian limestone, and hand-crafted wood beam ceilings to give an intimate residential ambience. Of course one of the best features has to be the private terraces with incredible ocean views. This truly is your well-appointed Italian home for the length of your stay. It has everything you need including modern amenities like MP3 ports, wireless internet, and a superb Bose sound system. Staff members make sure that your Nespresso machine and wet bar stay fully stocked. At night, you can fall asleep peacefully to the glow of the fire place and the comfort of your 500-thread-count sheets on the most comfortable bed you have ever slept in.

The Resort features the largest inventory of luxury two-, three- and four-bedroom Villas that are available for daily rental.


Dining at The Resort is just as impressive. The resort’s signature restaurant, Andrea Ristorante, offers Tuscan-influenced Northern Italian cuisine with an extensive wine list that is sure to please the casual enthusiast as well as offering you rare vintages. Chef Marco Criscuolo sources seasonal ingredients and creates flavorful classic Northern Italian dishes. Pastas are hand-crafted in a one-of-kind, temperature-controlled “Cucina della Pasta” (pasta room) that stays at a constant temperature. Yes, they’re serious about their pasta and oh, is it so good. The must-order item to start, is the table-side risotto that’s finished in a large wheel of parmigiano-reggiano. Also the off-menu carbonara is one of the best pasta dishes you’ll ever have. 

Barrel- aged Acquerello risotto with forrest mushrooms prepared table side.

Ahi tuna cone
Prime filet mignon with roasted heirloom carrots, asparagus, turned potatoes and peppercorn sauce.

For a Napa-inspired menu, Pelican Grill features innovative seafood, steak and wood-oven pizzas, and Sunday brunch offers à la carte California cuisine. Chef Luke Turpin creates fresh comforting California classics. For lunch, try the off-menu steak sandwich with grilled onions, gruyere, and arugula. The ahi tuna tartare with Meyer lemon, avocado, cucumber, scallion and sesame oil is the most refreshing start to your lunch.

Tuna Tartare

The more casual Coliseum Pool & Grill is a perfect place to sit poolside during brunch and enjoy a delicious lobster scramble and French Press coffee or perhaps a mimosa. The serene and casual ambience is a great way to start your day. 

Lobster scramble.


The amenities at Pelican Hill are outstanding and simply some of the best that you can find at any word class resort. The Coliseum Pool, inspired by the timeless curves of Rome’s famed landmark, is one of the largest pools in the world. With more than one million hand-cut glass mosaic tiles and 136 feet in diameter, it resembles a precious gem in the midst of the beautiful architecture around you. Treat yourself to a day at the Five-Star Spa, that’s more than a place to enjoy a good massage, helping you restore health and balance through the ultimate personalized care. The golf club, designed by Tom Fazio, boasts 36 holes with stunning ocean panoramas and is consistently ranked among the best in prestigious annual lists. 

Your Italian seaside getaway is waiting for you. The Resort at Pelican Hill is a one-of-a-kind experience that takes you 6,000 miles away without ever getting on a plane. Italy is a lot closer than you think. 

22701 S Pelican Hill Rd, Newport Coast, CA 92657
(855) 467-6800 |

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Special thanks to The Resort at Pelican Hill for collaborating with Hungry in LA. As always, the content and opinions expressed here are entirely our own.

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