UPDATED: Sleuthing out an intoxicating mystery at Wine Detective in Pasadena

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An informant e-mail this weekend confirms the long-time-coming Wine Detective is now open in Pasadena.

“After two years of blood, sweat and tears, 400 wines tasted and starting to suspect that it might never happen, Wine Detective has quietly opened its doors to the wine-loving public.”

The tasting room offers 50 wines for sampling through Enomatic wine dispensers that allow you to sniff out your own clues notes.

Individual wines are self-sampled, one ounce at a time, by using a special debit card preloaded to fit your budget. Make your selections by button, and the card is charged for the price of each ounce. Repeat the ones you love, ditch the ones you don’t — and reload the card if necessary.

A small menu of cold-cut plates and Basque-style sandwiches is available.

146 S. Lake Ave., Suite 109 (across from the Green Street Cafe)

No phone number listed yet, but we’re on the case.
Wine Detective’s Yulia Meltser comments below with the phone number: (626) 792-9936.

(Photo via Wine Detective)

Pilot Chesley ‘Sully’ Sullenberger is the 2010 Rose Parade grand marshal

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>>INSIDER

The Tournament of Roses today announced Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger III as the 2010 Rose Parade grand marshal.

In January, Sullenberger rose to national attention after safely guiding US Airways Flight 1549 into New York’s Hudson River during an emergency landing.

He is a resident of Danville.

More from the TofR press release:

“Captain Sully saved the lives of 155 people and is an excellent
example of the everyday American hero,” said Jeffrey Throop, acting
president of the Tournament of Roses. “With his theme, A Cut Above the Rest,
President Gary DiSano wanted to honor those who strive to make every
effort better than the last. Sullenberger has certainly shown how we
can do that and we are honored to have him host the 2010 festivities.”

“It
has long been a family tradition to watch the Rose Parade,” said
Captain Sullenberger. “I am incredibly honored to be named the Grand
Marshal of such a revered American institution.”

[Star-News]

(Photo by Walt Mancini / Staff)

Jewelry box: Rose Queen crowns through history

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>>INSIDER

Natalie
Innocenzi of Arcadia was crowned today as the
92nd Rose Queen.

Her Mikimoto crown, set in silver, features 10 white
South Sea pearls, 632 Akoya cultured pearls and 6.09 carats in diamonds. It’s estimated to be worth more than $100,000.

This crown was introduced for the 2005 parade, and it was the first to be made of truly precious materials. Before that, it was a lot of faux glitz.

Let’s walk through some of the headpieces bestowed on Rose Queens in days of yore.

This crown, below, was commissioned for the 75th Rose Parade in 1993. It’s described in a 2004 story from the Star-News archives as “a
large and looping number … that’s decorated with dozens of fake diamonds.”

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The crown, below, was only worn by one Rose Queen, Linda Strother, in 1968. A new crown took its place the next year.

In 1997 — and now Linda Strother McKnight — she gave an interview to the Los Angeles Daily News. She talked about how the tumultuous era eclipsed the glamour and pageantry: “In 1968, the most important thing was dealing with social unrest and the war in Vietnam. So why would anyone do anything so shallow as be a Rose Queen?”

Interestingly enough, during her years as a college student at Berkeley, she wrote her senior sociology thesis introducing a feminist critique on the institution of Rose Queen, she told the Star-News in 2002.

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The Art-Deco-explosion crown below was actually worn from 1954-1967.
 

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From 1940-1953, 14 queens rode down Colorado Boulevard wearing the crown below. The first was Margaret Huntley Main, the oldest living Rose Queen.

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During part of the 1930s, the Rose Queen’s crown was formed from a collection of bracelets and broaches. They were fashioned to fit together like a puzzle. After the parade, the pieces became mementos, inscribed with the queen’s or princess’s name, that they took home with them. This piece, below, belonged to Queen Barbara Dougall in 1939, as you can see from the engraving on the back.

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The front of some individual jewelry pieces that were once part of a whole crown. The 1939 Royal Court returned their pieces, so the Tournament would be able to display a whole collection.

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Below, what the crown may have looked like when assembled in ’39.

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And matching earrings! Today, each member of the Rose Court gets a pearl necklace and earrings from Mikimoto.

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(From file photos and staff archives)

‘Even if we’re going to be arrested, I think we’ve added something to Pasadena’

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“A fork, a fork, my kingdom for a fork.” Seriously, though, I can haz?

Ice House founder Bob Stane on this most unusual 75th birthday commemoration piece:

“I hope it will be in many movies — the ‘Pasadena Fork in the Road,”‘ he said. “Even if we’re going to be arrested, I think we’ve added something to Pasadena.” [Star-News]

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(Photo by Walt Mancini / Staff)

Have you met the Comtesse?

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KCRW’s resident art critic and one-time teacher at Art Center College of Design, Edward Goldman, went on the air yesterday to introduce an esteemed lady friend to Southern Californians.

She is the alluring Comtesse d’ Haussonville — captured for the ages by French painter Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres.

Goldman has called upon the Comtesse before, in her stately home on the Upper East Side. But even ladies must travel from time to time.

The Comtesse d’ Haussonville is the first loan in a new art-exchange
program between Fifth Avenue’s The Frick Collection and our very own
Norton Simon.

How did the travel — the change of scenery — suit the Comtesse?

“I went on Saturday … wanting to see if here, under the California sun, I would learn something new about her.”

Here’s what he discovered.

The Comtesse is visiting through Jan. 25.