FACTS OF FOOD ENJOYMENT: Just like a pancake tastes better when the syrup and butter atop it form a smiley face, so edibles take on a lustrous glow when presented on platters in bite-sized bits, topped with small tomatoes or speared with fancy toothpicks. We refer, of course, to the always appealing set-up of an elegant "Taste of" evening. Rather than the booth-y outside affair of some al fresco "Taste ofs," or a week-long deal where a person journeys from restaurant to restaurant, the ballroom-pretty, one-evening-only affair allows the curious cuisinaire to sip and sup from multiple local and regional restaurants and caterers all by selecting a shrimp or a baklava or a cookie or a sample of wine at a time. Taste of Conejo Valley enjoys this set-up, and a sumptuously grand setting, too: Four Seasons Hotel Westlake Village is the spot. And the date? Thursday, Oct. 9.
RESTAURANTS OF THE REGION: When dozens of dining spots are set to show, and you plan to show as well, you have two excellent choices. One? Turn up ready to be surprised as you walk the room. Two? Study up on who'll be there. If the second route appeals, here's an appetizer now: Jeannine's Food Hall of Westlake Village, Brendan's Irish Pub & Restaurant of Newbury Park, Esperti Coffee Company of Agoura Hills are three of the 50+ beverage and eats purveyors set to show. If you live in the Conejo, you're about to widen your standard go-tos. If you drive the valley frequently on the 101, you're about to find a couple of other places to stop-off beyond the two or three you've relied on for awhile.
BENEFICIARIES: Westminster Free Clinic and Community Conscience are the two beneficiaries of the evening; "half of all proceeds raised from this year's silent auction will benefit these organizations..." says a rep. Nice and nice. General admission is $60 before Oct. 5.