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From Hollywood to Vine with Vineyard {511}
Adventures in Wine, Food, Film and Travel


Irene Ojdana
September 18, 2019 | Irene Ojdana

Hollywood Bowl Concerts

The Hollywood Bowl, in the Hollywood Hills, is a Los Angeles institution and a phenomenal way to enjoy an outdoor concert. The Bowl, a natural ampitheater, had its first concert in 1922 and was renovated in 2005.


Ed and I have season tickets to the Bowl and have been enjoying concerts in our box seats there every summer since before the renovation. We love to get there early to have dinner in the box before the concert starts. We order a delicious dinner online, which is delivered to our box. The food is created by James Beard award-winning chef Suzanne Goin and restauranteur Carolyn Styne (of celebrated local restaurants Lucques, a.o.c., Tavern, and the Larder.)

There were two concerts that stood out this season for us. One was Pink Martini, with lead singer China Forbes, who belted out old favorites.


And the other was and the biggest surprise of all -- Barry Malinow--who I always loved; however, I couldn't predict that he would still be such a marvelous performer. His voice was still wonderful, and he put out a tremendous amount of energy. He sang his greatest hits, like "Mandy" and "Copacabana" and many others.


Now we have to wait till next year to see who will be making our summer special.




Time Posted: Sep 18, 2019 at 6:52 PM Permalink to Hollywood Bowl Concerts Permalink
Irene Ojdana
September 23, 2015 | Irene Ojdana

Diana Krall Plays the Hollywood Bowl

Diana Krall at the Hollywood BowlEd and I were lucky enough to see my most favorite jazz singer--Diana Krall--at the Hollywood Bowl, where she gave a sensational concert. We had seen her in concert at least three times before, but each time she has been more amazing than before. She played the piano while singing hits from the Great American Songbook and captivated the audience. It is amazing that she started out just as a jazz pianist, not as a vocalist, but was overheard singing by her manager, who encouraged her to sing as part of her repertoire. I went home a happy camper after having seen her that night.

Time Posted: Sep 23, 2015 at 2:36 PM Permalink to Diana Krall Plays the Hollywood Bowl Permalink
Irene Ojdana
November 8, 2014 | Irene Ojdana

Pouring Vineyard {511} at Breeders' Cup Taste of the World

We recently poured our Vineyard {511} 2010 Diamond Mountain District Cabernet Sauvignon at the Breeders' Cup "Taste of the World," a food and wine/beer/cocktail extravaganza held in a hugh tent at the Huntington Library, in tony San Marino. The event followed the first day of the Breeders' Cup, horse racing's glamourous international event. Two days of championship races and over $26 million in prize money attract the best horses from the U.S. and around the world including Europe, South America, and Asia.

The Huntington Library includes legendary gardens, which are populated with everything from massive succulents to lovingly-pruned roses, and Japanese and Chinese pavillions. Inside the Library, we were able to enjoy a massive art collection. The current exhibition includes thirty rarely-seen masterworks from its vast collection of American drawings and watercolors.

Each winery was paired with one of Los Angeles's best restaurants. We were lucky to be next to Austrian BierBeisl (formerly of Berverly Hills and soon to re-open on the Westside and Downtown L.A.), where talented young chef Bernhard Mairinger served up the best meatballs I've ever tasted.


Time Posted: Nov 8, 2014 at 8:16 PM Permalink to Pouring Vineyard {511} at Breeders' Cup Taste of the World Permalink
Irene Ojdana
August 29, 2014 | Irene Ojdana

50th Anniversary of Beatles at the Hollywood Bowl

As a tribute to the Beatles and in honor of their first performance at the Hollywood Bowl August 23, 1964 (back when tickets for seats were $3-$7), the Hollywood Bowl put on 3 concerts of the same songs the Beatles sang that night 50 years ago. Luckily, Ed and I have season tickets to the Bowl, and I was able to see one of these new performances on August 22, 2014.

Bob Eubanks, host of the TV show "The Newlywed Game," was a popular DJ in L.A. back in 1964, at the time of the Beatles sold-out tour of the U.S., explained to the audience how he had put up his house to get $25,000 to book and produce the original performance at the Bowl. He read a telegram from Sir Paul McCartney, who was sorry not to be with them on stage. Then Dave Stewart, co-founder of the Eurythmics and his band, led the rest of the show, with songs performed by son Sam Stewart on the guitar, and son Django Stewart and daughter Kaya Stewart, who sang with their father.

Bill Ray Cyrus at Hollywood Bowl

Guest stars Bill Ray Cyrus performed "It's A Hard Day's Night" and "Hey Jude," while the audience waved illuminated cellphones, and Australian Vanessa Amorosi rocked "Rollover Beethoven," "Get Back," and "Let It Be."


The night ended with "All You Need Is Love," with everyone swaying, dancing and singing along.

Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Time Posted: Aug 29, 2014 at 11:28 PM Permalink to 50th Anniversary of Beatles at the Hollywood Bowl Permalink
Irene Ojdana
July 3, 2014 | Irene Ojdana


On June 29, Ed and I were back to Hollywood and Vine, at the beautifully-restored art deco Pantages Theater, to see the terrific Ghost The Musical. This stage version was directed by Matthew Warchus, book and lyrics by Bruce Joel Rubin and music and lyrics by Dave Stewart and Glen Ballard. Bruce Joel Rubin adapted the play from his Oscar-winning screenplay Ghost (1990).

Ghost The Musical Pantages Theater HollywoodAs you may remember, the plot of the film Ghost  (can you believe it's been almost 25 years since it was first released?) revolves around lovers handsome banker Sam Wheat (played by Steven Grant Douglas--the late Patrick Swayze in the film) and sweet sculptor Molly Jensen (played by Katie Postotnik--Demi Moore in the film). Sam and Molly are attacked on the way back from her art show, and he dies and becomes a spirit caught between two worlds. Sam convinces the psychic Oda Mae Brown (played by Carla R. Stewart -- Whoopie Goldberg in the film--a part for which she won an Oscar) to warn Molly that her life is still in danger from their (so-called) friend, Sam's co-worker Carl Bruner (played by Robby Haltiwanger). Carl was responsible for Sam's death, as Carl hired someone to commit the attack to steal information from Sam to further a scam Carl has initiated.

The special effects and illusions created by Paul Kieve were amazing, and we were also not disappointed in the new portrayals by the actors, who had wonderful stage presence and marvelous voices; when Sam sang "Unchained Melody" to Molly, there wasn't a dry eye in the house.




Time Posted: Jul 3, 2014 at 11:00 PM Permalink to GHOST THE MUSICAL Permalink
Irene Ojdana
April 12, 2013 | Irene Ojdana

David Glasser and Ed Ojdana Join the NVFF Board of Trustees

On April 8, The Napa Valley Film Festival (NVFF) added two new members to its Board of Trustees: David Glasser and Ed Ojdana.

Currently, David Glasser is Chief Operating Officer and President of International Sales and Distribution for the Weinstein Company, one of the most well-known and successful independent film studios in the world. As the COO of the Weinstein Company, he is responsible for the company's management and development of its growing portfolio of businesses, which include motion pictures, television, home entertainment, library and international film sales and distribution. David's connections and experience will help bring high caliber films to NVFF. Since its inception in 2010, David has brought these terrific Weinstein Company films to NVFF: The King's Speech, Blue Valentine, Butter, Undefeated, Quartet, The Sapphires, and Silver Linings Playbook.

Ed Ojdana brings to NVFF not only his business management and leadership skills, but also his increasing involvement in film. He recently retired as chief executive officer of Experian Interactive. He previously founded and ran (also known as  On the film side, he was an executive producer on the film Rock Slyde, starring Patrick Warburton and Andy Dick, and on the award-winning documentary film Jiro Dreams of Sushi, which was acquired and distributed by Magnolia Pictures and which screened at the 2011 NVFF. Ed currently sits on several boards, which include GoDigital (Executive Chairman), Preferred VenturesLLC, and the UC Davis Department of Viticulture and Enology.


Time Posted: Apr 12, 2013 at 2:19 PM Permalink to David Glasser and Ed Ojdana Join the NVFF Board of Trustees Permalink
Irene Ojdana
March 23, 2013 | Irene Ojdana

Catch Me If You Can - The Musical

On Saint Patrick’s Day, Ed and I navigated our way through all the street closures for the Los Angeles Marathon to see Catch Me If You Can--The Musical, at the Pantages Theater, in Hollywood, near the intersection of Hollywood and Vine.  Needless to say, Hollywood was flooded with those wearing green – and green beer!

Catch Me If You Can – The Musical is an adaptation of the Dreamworks motion picture, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, as Frank Abagnale, Jr., the real life person on whom the film and musical, as well as the original book (by Abagnale with Stan Redding), was based.

The music, lyrics and dancing were all delightful. For those of you who didn’t see the movie, the plot revolves around how a sixteen year old boy, Frank Abagnale, Jr., (played extremely well by the talented Steven Anthony), leaves home and makes it in the real world by impersonating an airline pilot, lawyer and doctor, forging checks and ID’s, and charming the world. The print ad for the movie says it all: "If you wanna make it, make it up."

Eventually, when Abagnale is eighteen, the law catches up with him via a zealous FBI agent (played by Merritt David Janes in the musical and played by Tom Hanks in the film). Abagnale serves seven years in prison and then, amazingly, is hired by the FBI to help it fight fraud and embezzlement. Currently, Abagnale is one of the world’s leading authorities on secure documents.

When Ed was CEO of Experian Interactive,  we met Abagnale a couple of times as he is a world-renowned public speaker on the topics of check fraud, embezzlement and secure documents. Meeting him in person motivated us to see the musical. We weren’t disappointed!


Time Posted: Mar 23, 2013 at 1:50 PM Permalink to Catch Me If You Can - The Musical Permalink