My recent foray to Beverly Hills included a delightful, delicious lunch at Lulu at the Hammer Museum in Westwood. The museum exhibition was ho-hum, our leisurely déjeuner in the open-air courtyard was superb! A new exhibition based on Joan Didion opens October 11, scurry to LA for the perfect recipe of delectable dining and museum afternoon! I may have to make a return trip. Or ignore the museum altogether and just enjoy dining in a very special location.
Not far from downtown Beverly Hills, the newish Lulu’s is a collaboration between famed chef, New York Times writer and prolific cookbook author David Tanis and the Bay Area’s Alice Waters of Chez Panisse. David, who is well-known for his New York Times cooking column, worked at Chez Panisse, on and off for nearly 25 years. They are old chums, enjoying decades of friendship and a mutual love of cooking and sustainability. When approached by UCLA to open the restaurant, David was Alices’ only choice as a partner.
Lulu is committed to prioritizing sustainability through local, regenerative food and design. If you follow David on Instagram, his Farmers Market selections provide inspiration for the daily menu. Lulu’s mission focuses on procuring food directly from small, nearby farms practicing regenerative organic agriculture, which results in wholesome, delicious food grown using methods that combat the climate crisis. The Lulu website lists numerous small farms who supply chef and kitchen team with seasonal fruit and vegetables. And of course, there is a lovely wine and cocktail menu.
The restaurant is named after a wise Provencal cook, Lulu Peyraud, whose cooking and hospitality at Domaine Tempier in Bandol, France has always inspired David and Alice.
At lunch, Lulu offers a popular three-course $45 prix fixe menu as well as an à la carte selection of salads, soups, sandwiches, light lunch fare, coffee, tea, and desserts. For supper, Lulu offers an à la carte selection of small bites, appetizers, entrées, and desserts curated around the produce in season. Staying true to their ethos of “market cooking,” the menus change daily depending on what is the very best available from local farms.
The outdoor setting under a canopy of umbrellas and dangling paper lanterns is perfect. Massive raw salvaged wood planks are stacked with bowls of gorgeous fresh apples and persimmons, whatever is seasonal. Simple and clean, the message is abundantly clear in the design and decor. Dating the menu is symbolic of the narrative, it’s fresh from the market or farm.
The menu will change constantly. The a la carte menu may offer a combination of soups and salads and sandwiches; three-course prix fixe allows David to shape meals with a gastronomic narrative. Like all the recipes from David’s cookbooks, the dishes are designed to be straightforward and uncomplicated. One year, David personally signed his cookbooks as a gift to our clients.
Our meal choices were based on David’s recommendation and for me, trying an option from one of his cookbooks. I adored a starter of Jumbo Medjool Dates, his roasted rosemary almonds served with a jagged chunk of Parmesan cheese.. the perfect bite to peruse the menu. David transforms simple to glorious! My Chicken a la Milanese was scrumptious, as was a shared plate of farm ripened Caprese salad with black olive toast. We also shared a satisfying plate of Ricotta gnocchi with zucchini and squash blossoms. All yummy! Sticking with the seasonal menu for dessert, we scooped up every bite of the gooey Nectarine blackberry crumble.
Lulu serves lunch and supper Tuesday through Sunday – check website for hours and directions.
Highly Recommend Lulu and we can reserve the perfect Beverly Hills hotel, tell David you are dining – and perhaps you will enjoy a hello with Alice and a tour of the kitchen with David, as I did!
Thank you, dear David, for the special attention. Your follower and friend, Gwen
Egypt is a dream destination, my last pre-Covid Journey was to Egypt and Jordan, and I would return a heartbeat for another visit. Once is not enough! The country is safe, open to travelers and is amid a hotel renaissance, and the new Egyptian Museum is scheduled for a fall opening.
While Egypt has a lot to offer in terms of tourism, enjoying a classic felucca boat down the Nile, marveling at the Pyramids, exploring the spectacles of Luxor, one can now add on a dazzling visit to the renovated Four Seasons Sharm El Sheikh.
Four Seasons Hotel Cairo at The First Residence
There are two stylishFour Seasons in Cairo and I would suggest you stay at both – you will arrive and most likely depart from Cairo with a Nile River tour decadently sandwiched between your Nile sojourn. Four Seasons at The First Residence is located in Giza, between the Nile River and the Giza Zoo and enjoys impressive views of Cairo’s skyline and the Pyramids. Giza is a great location in terms of being near the Pyramids and zoo, but the remainder of the tourist sites (Tahrir Square, the Mosque of Muhammad Ali, Khan al-Khalili market, Zamalek) are closer to the Four Seasons Cairo at Nile Plaza and are on the far side of the Nile. That said, the location of the Four Seasons at The First Residence has a local authenticity in the surroundings which you don’t experience in the surrounds of the Nile Plaza. Choices, as individual as our fingerprint, there is the perfect hotel for every Journey!
Four Seasons Hotel Cairo at The First Residence
Cairo is the capital of Egypt. The city’s metropolitan area is one of the largest in Africa, the largest in the Middle East and the Arab world, and the 15th-largest in the world, and is associated with ancient Egypt, as the famous Giza pyramid complex and the ancient city of Memphis are located in its geographical area. Located near the Nile Delta, modern Cairo was founded in 969 CE by the Fatimid dynasty, but the land composing the present-day city was the site of ancient national capitals whose remnants remain visible in parts of Old Cairo. Cairo has long been a center of the region’s political and cultural life, and is titled “the city of a thousand minarets” for its preponderance of Islamic architecture. Cairo is considered a World City with a “Beta +” classification according to GaWC. Cairo has the oldest and largest film and music industries in the Arab world, as well as the world’s second-oldest institution of higher learning, Al-Azhar University
On the Pyramids!
The Four Seasons First Residence is located on the western bank of the Nile in the historic suburb of Giza, the hotel is the perfect jumping-off point for exploring Cairo. From the zoological gardens that lie just outside our doors to the shopping and entertainment within our very own First Place complex, you won’t have to go far to find plenty to see and do. Observe unique works of art at the nearby Mohamed Mahmoud Khalil Museum, or we can arrange an unforgettable horseback-riding adventure by the pyramids, multiple exclusive options can be arranged. A palatial sanctuary that boasts stunning views, flanked by zoological gardens and the western bank of the Nile, the address in Giza’s prestigious First Place complex puts you in the center of it all. Catch a glimpse of the river or the Great Pyramids from your suite as you head out to explore the ancient wonders, or spend the day by the surprisingly quiet pool, indulging in an aromatic massage once reserved for Egyptian royalty. Or opt for shopping in the high-end boutiques at the First Mall or experience the best of gastronomy aboard the First Nile Boat, offering panoramic Nile views and brilliant international cuisine. Busy mornings exploring buzzy Cairo are best rewarded by a late afternoon poolside and with a visit to the decadent spa.
Exclusive Experiences: Behold the illuminated Sphinx and the Pyramids of Giza under a starry sky. Then relax in your private tent, where the view of the enigmatic pyramids and live music flavor the dinner of your choice.
The First Residence offers 262 luxury rooms and 50 suites, the décor is a soothing palate of light hues and pay homage to the French Empire in their elegant décor. Exquisite views of the Nile and pyramids are the hotel’s blockbuster element. I spent my last 10 hours in Cairo here, the hotel deserves a few days- but I ran out of time! Enjoy a suite which guarantees stunning panoramic views of the ancient city, my Ambassador suite included a wraparound corner terrace. It can extend to three bedrooms, with eye-catching views of the Nile, pyramids and Botanical Gardens, these three-bedroom suites easily adapt to your travel style, with plenty of room for the kiddos and family members.
Four Seasons at Nile Plaza
Located on the highest floor, the Royal Suite is a state-of-the-art living area that redefines luxury. The penthouse suite boasts a private dining area that can host up to 10 guests, as well a master bedroom that showcases a bespoke walk-in closet. It also comes with a 52-inch LCD satellite television, iMac computer, DVD player, and Bose music system, ensuring you can leave all your tech equipment at home.
Exclusive Options: Royal Feast. The glistening gilded walls and lavish décor of Manial Palace create a one-of-a-kind setting for a private, Four Seasons-catered dinner you won’t soon forget. This palace complex, built by the uncle of King Farouk, Prince Mohammed Ali, in the early 20th century. Its interiors and architecture are a fascinating merging of Ottoman, Moorish, Persian and European rococo styles, while the gardens planted with rare tropical plants collected by the prince.
Four Seasons Sharm El Sheikh
An intimate oasis at the pool in an elevated setting, the chaos of Cairo is left behind on the wide sunny terraces surrounding the pool. Snack on charcoal grilled specialties and Middle Eastern mezze at the Aura poolside restaurant or plop in the afternoon sun or under a dappled umbrella, the mezze is scrumptious!
Discover the First Nile Boat, a Four Seasons culinary destination with a Brazilian grill, a pan-Asian restaurant and a Greek taverna, all with panoramic Nile views. Welcome to a world of taste, comfort and luxury on First Nile Boat, a trendy lifestyle spot in the Egyptian capital. Docked opposite Four Seasons Hotel Cairo at the First Residence, the boat combines energetic restaurants, a lounge and event spaces perfect for your next gathering.
Four Seasons Sharm El Sheikh. Cascading down the hillside from the desert to the Red Sea, Four Seasons Resort Sharm El Sheikh welcomes you to an Arabian fairytale with year-round sun; sleek, modern accommodations; over 3,000 palm trees and panoramic sea views. Limestone cliffs embrace an almost a mile long private beachfront with crystal-clear waters and access to a protected marine reserve. Now transformed after a major expansion, the Resort rises to new levels of world-class luxury. Spacious new guest rooms and oversized suites – with a choice of modern design or traditional Arabian décor. Delight in a multitude of al fresco dining options, new playgrounds for leisure or business, and authentic desert and sea adventures where every detail is elevated with thoughtful Four Seasons care.
Four Seasons Sharm El Sheikh
Forget the mirage of a dusty desert location, this property is an oasis facing the Red Sea. Considered Egypt’s diving capital, the Red Sea is home to 76 recognized dive sites – many only a few minutes from the Resort. The pinnacle of Arabian sophistication, the amazing signature suites host leading politicians, royalty, and our VIP Clients! Each suite is a stand-alone residence, steps from the beach, lavished with luxurious furnishings and the latest technology. Remarkable features include 24-hour butler service, expansive gardens, private pools and even a private beach.Fantasy interiors matched with modern interpretation of Arabian designs and Arabesque details, views from arched windows.
Travel outside the Four Seasons oasis and head into the wilderness of the desert. Feel the wind in your hair during a quad biking adventure, exploring the spectacular hills and mountains of Sharm El Sheikh. Or journey across the desert on a camel tour, catching the sun as it sets below the horizon.