Pictured: The LA Street Food Fest at Pasadena’s Rose Bowl

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Even though our staff was sweating under the pressure of deadline as we put together the August-September issue of Rose Magazine, I simply couldn’t miss out on the LA Street Food Fest on July 24 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena.
File this Pictured entry under “Better Late Than Never,” as our photographer Sarah Reingewirtz captured these fabulous images, and I’m just now getting around to posting them here. Scroll on through, and let me know what vendor dishes were your favorites.

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UPDATED: Blaze rages at Plate 38 restaurant in East Pasadena

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UPDATED: Read the full report by Nathan McIntire in the Star-News.
A fire tore through a newly opened East Pasadena eatery today.
Plate 38 just opened for business four days ago at the corner of Sierra Madre Boulevard and Colorado Boulevard.
The restaurant staff was gearing up for the lunch-hour rush when the two-alarm blaze ignited, City News Service reported.
(Photo by Keith Birmingham / Staff)

Photos: Drawing on eclectic ingredients at Elements Kitchen in Pasadena

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Before Onil Chibs became a chef, he worked for more than a decade in animation with film studios like Disney, Sony and DreamWorks.

And at Elements Kitchen — the newest, fine-dining extension of Chibs’ already-established Pasadena catering and caf branches — Wednesday-night “sketches” are the culinary version of an artist’s extemporaneous doodle.
“There’s this whole idea of sketching and everybody having their pads out and translating it in a certain way,” Chibs said. “As food artists, chefs are doing the same thing.”
The kitchen staff is given a single ingredient — goat or curry or maize, as examples — and about a week to come up with a creative use for it in small-plate appetizers that are served for $5 in the Elements Bar. (On Thursdays, the bartenders do liquid sketches, creating $5 cocktails around an ingredient.)

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Photos: Claud Beltran’s fare-minded approach at Noir Food & Wine Bar in Pasadena

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When it opened in August last year, Noir Food & Wine Bar was Claud Beltran’s first stab at shaping a small-plates menu for one of his eateries. (The chef said he now loves the portioned approach.)
“I always had a dream of doing a menu with hamburger, foie gras, chile verde and gumbo — so here it is,” he said.
Beltran, who built his culinary career in Pasadena at restaurants like the recently-shuttered Madeleines, said he and partner Mike Farwell envisioned Noir as a casual place, serving straight-forward food with a touch of Big Easy style.
“There’s no food trickery,” Beltran said. “It’s not West L.A., and we don’t do foams. … We’re just trying to be very fair, honest — you know, French-, Mediterranean-, California-style food with our little New Orleans craziness.”

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Photos: Chef Job Carder’s Cal-Med cuisine at Dish Bistro in Pasadena

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Dish Bistro‘s Job Carder has a slow-food approach to cuisine in his kitchen on Union Street. He makes all the house breads and pastas; handmade sausages and charcuterie; and cured bacon, prosciutto and pancetta.
Above is the executive chef’s half-roasted Jidori chicken, which he serves with stuffed garlic and thyme. The chicken is slow-roasted with veggies, like sunburst and pattypan squash, Thumbelina carrots, Chambord-glazed cipollini onions and baby turnips.
“I like to stay as true to the ingredients that I’m using as possible and not mask them or overpower them with a bunch of herbs or spices,” Carder said. “I believe that everything should be as clean and pure as possible. … I do it the old-world way.”
Carder said he spends a lot of time building relationships with farmers, creameries and the like.
“Luckily, they’re willing to ship to me, so we can have … produce that is all sourced locally,” he said. “My lamb comes direct from the farmer, my cheese comes direct from the creamery, my fish comes right out of Bodega Bay to me.”
For his summer menu, expect to see Carder working with tomatoes and figs, among other fresh ingredients.
“In the summer, the tomatoes are plump and lush and colorful — that’s when you want to use them,” he says. “And figs: I adore figs, I love figs.”
Dish Bistro & Bar, 53 E. Union St., (626) 795-5546, dishbistroandbar.com
More photos after the jump:

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With Voltaggio heading out, The Langham moves forward on new concept for its restaurant

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Celebrity chef Michael Voltaggio is leaving The Langham Huntington in July, but the renovation of the hotel’s Michelin-star restaurant is going ahead as scheduled, said Langham spokeswoman Elsa Schelin.
These renderings, the “latest sketches” provided by The Langham, give a glimpse into the future look of the as-yet-unnamed restaurant.
The Dining Room will close July 18 and is slated to reopen in early October — now, with a new chef at its helm.
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Atlanta-based architecture and design firm The Johnson Studio is leading the remodel.
It’s not the first time the kitchen’s leadership has changed since the hotel began planning the renovations. Bill Johnson, head of the design firm, noted in an e-mailed statement that the restaurant redesign project started when chef Craig Strong was still in The Dining Room’s top spot.
“The arrival of Michael Voltaggio with his success on ‘Top Chef’ brought new energy, and we had a great time working with his ideas and tweaking the design to reflect his style and his cooking,” Johnson said. “While we are sad to see him go, we are excited about the space that we are creating and look forward to working with the new chef through the construction and the finishing touches. We are confident that our design reflects the forward thinking vision and direction of the Langham brand and we are eager for the city of Pasadena to experience this exciting new restaurant.”

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Photos: At Pasadena’s POP Champagne Bar, dessert is the most important meal of the day

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A traditional Spanish dessert — these days, corrupted by an explosion in popularity and en masse distribution at theme parks and even fast-food joints — the churros at POP Champagne and Dessert Bar are on the high end of the doughy spectrum.
Chef Ray Vasquez rolls his fresh churros in sugar and serves them up with a trio of sauces: warm chocolate, dulce de leche and cinnamon.
POP Champagne and Dessert Bar, 33 E. Union St., (626) 795-1295, popchampagnebar.com
More photos after the jump:

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Photos: Harvest a bounty from farmers markets in the Pasadena area

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Staff writer Caroline An set out to discover what produce is in season at the area’s best farmers markets.
Summer has arrived, and succulent favorites are ripe for the picking: strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, apricots, plums, peaches and nectarines.
Also, sweet white corn, summer squash, beets, avocados and fava beans are all up for your consideration as hot-weather culinary inspiration.
For something a bit more unusual on your summer menu, try cactus.
Read the full story in Rose Magazine, plus lots of delicious photos after the jump:

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Photos: Rose Magazine kick-off party with the Pasadena POPS

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Rose Magazine partnered with the Pasadena POPS and the Star-News to celebrate the kick-off of our summer dining and entertainment issue on Friday, June 18.
The party was held on the lawn adjacent to the Rose Bowl, which is the new concert venue for the POPS.
Guests enjoyed food and drink from Pasadena eateries like Porta Via and Polkatots Cupcakes.
Rose Magazine’s Woman of the Year, Nadine Washington, helped co-host the celebration and was honored with an official pin recognizing the commendation.
The festivities concluded with a working-rehearsal performance by the POPS and guest artists Cirque de la Symphonie, as they prepared to open their summer concert season the following night.
More photos after the jump:

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Michael Voltaggio on life — and restaurant concepts — after The Langham in Pasadena

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From the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, Colo., the “Top Chef” talked to Krista Simmons of the L.A. Times’ Daily Dish blog about yesterday’s announcement that he’ll be leaving The Langham in Pasadena to start his own restaurant venture:

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Krista Simmons: Because of your personality and your style of cooking, everyone was surprised that you stayed at the Langham for so long. Why leave now that they’re renovating?
Michael Voltaggio: I had to come to terms with the fact that I either stay in Pasadena and be at this restaurant being branded around me, or I can do something on my own outside of the Langham. I decided I want to make my own place. … At the end of the day I know that no matter what, that restaurant wasn’t mine.
KS: What neighborhoods are you scoping out? Is there a possibility that you might not even stay in L.A.?

MV: Restaurants don’t just fall out of the sky, so it’ll be a while. My goal is to stay in Los Angeles. I love L.A. and think it’s the most exciting food city to be in right now. … I’ll be looking in West Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, places with a lot of foot traffic.

Full post here.

(Staff file photo)