Page 1

WINTER 2019/2020

MAGAZINE

COZY IN THE COUNTRY WITH NICOLLETTE SHERIDAN

SARA BERGSTEIN DIVES INTO BLK WATER | THE HIDDEN HILLS PONY CLUB | THE BARN AT CIELO FARMS | THE MONA FOUNDATION GARDEN GALA RIVER CRUISING EASTERN EUROPE | CULINARY CREATIONS & COCKTAILS FROM SADDLE PEAK LODGE | MEET THE LILAC FRENCHIE


©2019 ENGEL & VÖLKERS RESIDENTIAL ESTATES / REDEFINING LUXURY

SPANISH HILLS | ACTIVE $5,950,000

Each brokerage is independently owned & operated. Based on information from the Association of REALTORS®/MLS as of 11/18/19. All information should be independently verified for accuracy. Engel & Völkers are Equal Opportunity Employers & fully support the principles of the Fair Housing Act.

AGOURA HILLS | ACTIVE $2,899,999

SHERWOOD COUNTRY CLUB | ACTIVE $6,750,000


SHERWOOD COUNTRY CLUB | ACTIVE $8,300,000

NORTH RANCH | ACTIVE $2,795,000

Engel & Völkers is a leader in the sale of residential and commercial real estate, resorts, yachts, and private jets in the premium segment. Founded in 1977 as a boutique shop delivering high-end services to an exclusive clientele, today we are a luxury brand recognized around the world for our culture of exclusivity, competence and passion. With the addition of our shop off of Mulholland, we are better able to

offer our world-class service to Calabasas residents. If you could benefit from our services, or would like to learn more about joining our elite brand as an Engel & Völkers Real Estate Advisor, we’d love to hear from you.

Engel & Völkers Residential Estates 22267 Mulholland Highway, Calabasas 818.875.9500 calabasas.evrealestate.com calDRE 01910946

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from the

PUBLISHERS Our cover this issue is admittedly a bit of whimsical, wishful thinking. While Hidden Hills may not be a snowy hamlet with all the wonders of the season we hope that the feeling of cozy togetherness that winter can bring is ever-present throughout your holidays and well into the new year. We are thankful to all of our friends and neighbors who appreciate this publication and to all of our sponsors who make it possible. Without them we would not be able to shine a light on this unique and special place. Here's wishing you a happy, safe and healthy 2020! Happy Holidays! Lonna Weber & Joe Bellissimo

Lonna@LongValleyMedia.com

Joe@LongValleyMedia.com

10 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

CO- PUBLISHERS Lonna Weber Joe Bellissimo Editor-in-Chief Joe Bellissimo Copy Editors Linda Raznick Carly Fentress Advisory Board Archie E. Hanson Jr. Linda Raznick General Legal Counsel David S. Schnider Inquiries Advertising: Lonna@Longvalleymedia.com Editorial: editorial@Longvalleymedia.com ​Hidden Hills Magazine is published four times a year by Long Valley Media. LLC. It is mailed to residents of the city of Hidden Hills, California as well as distributed at commercial and retail locations in the greater Los Angeles and Ventura County areas. Long Valley Media, LLC 5115 Douglas Fir Rd. Suite C Calabasas, CA 91302 All Rights reserved. No article illustrations photographs or other editorial matter or advertisements herein may be reproduced without permission of the copy write owner (s). Long Valley Media, LLC does not take responsibility for the claims provided herein. Printed in the U.S.A.


CENTURION SURGICAL CENTER

KAPIL MOZA MD, FACS, FAANS NEUROLOGICAL SURGERY

D

r. Kapil Moza is a board certified, fellowship-trained neurosurgeon who has specialized in minimally invasive and complex spine surgery, as well as cerebrovascular/skull base surgery, for more than a decade. He is known for his record of positive clinical outcomes with zero infections and historically low complication rates. He is the first choice for many referring physicians and has frequently won patients’ choice awards for his medical expertise and bedside manner. Dr. Moza recently launched the Centurion Surgical Center, an outpatient surgical center that is fully accredited by the Joint Commission and specializes in minimally invasive spine surgery and interventional pain management. Equipped with stateof-the-art technology and staffed by board certified surgeons and physicians. Centurion boasts the largest operating room in any ambulatory surgical center in California. It will serve as a center of excellence for patients seeking minimally invasive spine surgery and artificial disc replacement, as well as interventional pain management services, including radiofrequency ablation, epidural injections and spinal cord stimulator implantation.

CENTURION SURGICAL CENTER 30200 Agoura Road #195, Agoura Hills, CA 91301 805.497.3622 ¡ www.DrMoza.com


WINTER 2019 features

18

18

NATURAL BEAUTY

76

33

Raising funds and awareness to support schools and programs that serve disadvantaged communities worldwide.

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62

38

PROTECTION HEROES

What can heal you isn't always clear. Meet three women on a quest to bring theraputic, healing water to the masses.

A close call inspires a local entrepreneur to simplify the process of protecting your family.

33

76

SADDLE UP!

EASTERN PROMISES FULFILLED

38

86

The Hidden Hills Pony Club reemerges, bringing back a longlost community tradition for local kids.

86

AN AFTERNOON FOR THE MONA FOUNDATION

Hidden Hills resident Nicollette Sheridan reflects on her connection with nature and her commitment to making natural products become the norm.

BACK IN BLK.

29

54

VIEW WITH A VINTAGE

Discover The Barn at Cielo Farms, the breathtaking new local destination for sipping and savoring the best of the Santa Monica Mountains.

Viking River Cruises’ Passage to Eastern Europe is an inspiring and luxurious way to rediscover one's heritage.

SADDLE PEAK SECRETS

Cozy winter creations to warm your kitchen from the legendary Saddle Peak Lodge.

90

COZY COCKTAILS

Be your own mixologist with these three easy recipes.

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93

FRENCHIE CONNECTION

As a pup, Hudson Lortscher's French Bulldog, Bailey, was paralyzed. He now not only walks again, but also takes great selfies.

ON THE COVER

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93

Winter vibes with actress and entrepreneur Nicollette Sheridan and her horse, Leo. Hair by Jonathan Antin. Set design by Nick Savalas and Dale Shayne. nicksavalas.com Photo by Marco Franchina.


CONTRIBUTORS DEBBIE YANUCK Debbie Yanuck began telling family tales about her siblings, at a young age, claiming they were nonfiction, but learned to label them fiction, and thus began her writing career. Since then, she has written 11 nonfiction children’s books (i.e. “The White House, “The Bald Eagle.”) Visit her blog at www.debyanuck.wordpress.com.

ALISA WOLFSON Alisa Wolfson has worked as a staff writer and reporter for the New York Post and Us Weekly. She’s contributed to C Magazine, Angeleno, Huffington Post, Redbook, Cosmopolitan, Country Living and Dow Jones. She lives in Pacific Palisades with her husband, their two young daughters and their dog Gus.

ALLIE LEBOS

Allie Lebos is a writer currently living in Santa Monica, CA. After graduating from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 2017 where she served as a staff writer for the Daily Nexus for nearly 2 years, Allie made her long-awaited move to Los Angeles. Originally from Dallas, TX, Allie has been taking life one day at a time as she attempts to learn new things everyday, both about the world we live, as well as herself.

LINDSEY BEST

Lindsey is an artist / photographer currently based in Los Angeles. She graduated with a BFA in Photography + Imaging from Art Center College of Design. Lindsey's photographs examine the human condition and the connection to the world in which we call home. She is fascinated by human connection, language, communication, and the fragmentation that inherently exists within the limits of what it means to be human.

MARCO FRANCHINA By the time he was 21, Marco Franchina was living in Milan, Italy working with top Italian magazines, one of the youngest photographers in the fashion industry at the time. Notably, Franchina was among the last photographers commissioned by Andy Warhol to shoot for Interview, photographing such iconic celebrities as Oliver Stone, River Phoenix, Winona Ryder, and Sarah Jessica Parker. He has also photographed Jewel, Boz Scaggs, The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Sheena Easton and Natalie Merchant, among others.

14 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020


MILLA MILLA PARIS PARIS RR

Rodeo RodeoRealty Realty F

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Luxury LuxuryRepresentation Representation

(818) (818)271-1233 271-1233

3916 3916 PARK PARK ANTONIO, ANTONIO, CALABASAS, CALABASAS, CACA 91302 91302 7 Beds, 7 Beds, 8 Baths 8 Baths| |9,336 9,336 sq sq ft ft| |$4,775,000 $4,775,000

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24344 24344 ROLLING ROLLING VIEW VIEW ROAD, ROAD, HIDDEN HIDDEN HILLS, HILLS, CACA 91302 91302

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5 Beds, 5 Beds, 4 Full 4 Full Baths Baths| |6,857 6,857 sq sq ft ft| |$5,496,000 $5,496,000

7 Beds, 7 Beds, 7 Full 7 Full Baths Baths| |5,875 5,875 sq sq ft ft| |$2,899,000 $2,899,000

Rodeo Rodeo Realty Realty Inc. Inc. does does notnot guarantee guarantee thethe accuracy accuracy of of square square footage, footage, lotlot size size or or other other information information concerning concerning thethe property property provided provided byby thethe seller. seller. This This is is notnot intended intended asas a solicitation a solicitation if your if your property property is is currently currently listed. listed. Rodeo Rodeo Realty Realty Marketing Marketing Department. Department.

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A LIFELONG EQUESTRIAN AND LOVER OR NATURE, SHERIDAN ISN'T AFRAID TO GET HER HANDS AND BOOTS DIRTY IN CARING FOR LEO (L) AND TIGGER (R). . . OLIVER SUPERVISES.

w PHOTO: JOE BELLISSIMO

ith a powerful connection to nature at the core of her soul, actress and entrepreneur Nicollette Sheridan feels most at home when surrounded by the great outdoors. “I grew up in the countryside, near the sea in England with my grandparents. They were loving and inspiring and encouraged my imagination to flourish through books, poetry, nature and riding horses across the

18 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019

English downs,” says Sheridan. She recalls her mother first putting her on a horse at age three. “Horses have always been a loving, healing and mandatory part of my life,” she explains. In fact, some of Sheridan’s most treasured childhood memories include long walks on the beach, picking blackberries with her grandmother, making homemade pies, racing across fields while out running the bull at large, climbing trees and having unforgettable conversations with her grandfather

who was a prolific writer and thinker. But Sheridan’s idyllic country life came to an end when she turned 10 and her family moved across the world to Beverly Hills, California. As an adult, Sheridan retreated to the hills of Bel Air, but was still unable to channel the inner peace that accompanies a setting that resonates with her love for the great outdoors. With a love for animals and nature alike, she flocked to Hidden Hills 11 years ago and attributes the neighborhood’s


NATURAL

BEAUTY

HIDDEN HILLS RESIDENT NICOLLETTE SHERIDAN REFLECTS ON HER CONNECTION WITH NATURE AND HER COMMITMENT TO MAKING NATURAL PRODUCTS BECOME THE NORM.

WRITTEN BY ALISA WOLFSON | PHOTOS BY MARCO FRANCHINA AND JOE BELLISSIMO HAIR BY JONATHAN ANTIN | PRODUCTION DESIGN BY NICK SAVALAS AND DALE NICKSAVALAS.COM WinterSHAYNE. 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 19


tranquility with her productive-yet-peaceful approach to life. “I navigate my life with my best friend Oliver at my side. He is truly the love of my life, brightening every day for the past 15 years,” she says of her beloved Golden Retriever. Sheridan and Oliver live tucked behind the rustic gates that lead to some of Southern California’s most impressive homes. Her property sits perched atop a hillside overlooking boundless

her compound that she refers to as “an English Tudor with a contemporary flair.” This self-professed animal advocate and lover thrives on the time spent with her animals. “Oliver and I have run and walked the trails of Hidden Hills for many years, averaging seven miles per day — motion is lotion!” Sheridan says. And when she’s not exploring outside, Sheridan enjoys being in the kitchen. “I love to cook and have always made homemade meals for Oliver. His diet consists of grass-fed beef, organic yams, potatoes, broccoli, zucchini, squash and carrots," she says of her culinary HEALTH HAS ALWAYS BEEN OF PARAMOUNT IMPORTANCE TO ME. I HAVE BEEN FRUSTRATED FOR YEARS THAT I’VE BEEN UNABLE TO FIND HEALTHY, NATURAL, OPTIMUM SOLUTIONS FOR SKINCARE -NICOLLETTE SHERIDAN

creations which rival the inventiveness she channels on screen. With a keen interest in living a healthy lifestyle, she effusively describes an anti-inflammatory cocktail that she swears by for her aging canine. “I have found that Curcumin, Ashwagandha, Boswelya Plus and Omega 3 fish oils are what keep him healthy and happy,” Sheridan explains.

PHOTO: JOE BELLISSIMO

elements of the natural world. “In my business, it has been important for me to live near the studios; yet, I was craving space for horses and quietude and safety,” she reflects. Whenever she returns home and closes in on Hidden Hills, she claims, “I start breathing easier.” It helps, too, that her two horses--Southern Courage, who goes by the barn name Leo, and Tigger-are there waiting for her. She conveniently stables her horses just down the street from

20 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

In fact, Sheridan is so passionate about what people put in and on their bodies that her latest endeavor includes the launch of a natural beauty product line called Biolumière Organics. “Health has always been of paramount importance to me. I have been frustrated for


PHOTO: JOE BELLISSIMO

LEFT PAGE, CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: SHERIDAN AND OLIVER TAKE IN THE VAST VIEWS FROM HER PROPERTY. THE ACTRESS RIDES HER HOLSTEINER, LEO. A JAR OF BIOLUMIÈRE ORGANICS ANTIAGING CREAM.


AN OUTDOOR ENTHUSIAST, SHERIDAN ENJOYS TAKING HER 1991 HARLEY DAVIDSON ON THE ROAD.

years that I’ve been unable to find healthy, natural, optimum solutions for skincare,” she says. Her philosophy encompasses health, longevity and loving oneself along the way. “I am very excited about our products and development. We formulated our Biolumière moisturizer and eye cream to deliver and retain hydration, allowing skin to repair and regenerate itself naturally.” Additionally, she’s

22 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

got healthy, natural solutions for deodorant, shampoo, sunscreen and toothpaste in the works. While masterminding clean products, Sheridan’s knowledge of plant-based derivatives has increased tenfold, giving her the innate ability to discuss the complex components that make up her initial run of face creams. “We are working with great ingredients like a rare exotic

plant growing in the Himalayan Mountains and the caviar lime that comes from a small tree endemic to the subtropical rain forest in Australia,” she shares. Her main objective is to provide people with the ability to repair, hydrate and protect their skin in a healthier way. But when she’s not looking out for the best interests of others, or working on set or on her


PHOTO: MARCO FRANCHINA

upcoming business venture, Sheridan, a self-proclaimed tomboy, can be found riding the Harley she purchased in 1991. “I still ride, not as often as I’d like, but I get my steel horse out,” she mentions. She also makes it a point to get her two equines out six days a week. “My animals rule the roost,” she jokes. Though she often plays glamorous and sophisticated


characters, her acting roles are quite the antithesis of her simple, fresh and poignant approach to life. That’s why Hidden Hills holds such a special place in her heart. And while she says she’s always gravitated to being out of the fray, nestled away from people, she unapologetically appreciates her solitude. “It’s important for me to have peace and to reflect in an environment that inspires me. I’m just a country girl at heart,” Sheridan says of her reclusive enclave.

IT’S IMPORTANT FOR ME TO HAVE PEACE AND TO REFLECT IN AN ENVIRONMENT THAT INSPIRES ME. I’M JUST A COUNTRY GIRL AT HEART. PHOTO: MARCO FRANCHINA

Hidden Hills also helps fuel her creative endeavors. Sheridan has written and produced two movies for Hallmark, including The Christmas Spirit (which Oliver appeared in), and she spends time writing, an activity that has long been an important part of her life. “It’s always surprising when you let your feelings and thoughts free flow from pen to paper,” she says. For now, Sheridan’s living life to its fullest, with some exciting, provocative projects on the horizon for both the big and small screens. And with her sights constantly set on architecture, interior design and landscaping, Sheridan has become quite the hostess with the mostest. “I love to cook and entertain, build and work around the house,” she says. And though her pals may initially protest the drive out into the country, she insists “They’re happy once they get here!” TOP: SHERIDAN AND OLIVER SHARE A SWEET MOMENT IN THE BARN. BOTTOM: THE JUXTAPOSITION OF SHERIDAN'S LIFE AS A FASHION-FORWARD FEMME FATALE IS DEPICTED HERE AS SHE LAYS ACROSS A FRESH BED OF SHAVINGS IN LEO'S STALL. PHOTO: MARCO FRANCHINA

24 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020


Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 25


26 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020


40 YEAR 4040YEAR YEAR RESIDENT RESIDENT RESIDENT OFOF HIDDEN OFHIDDEN HIDDEN HILLS HILLS HILLS “Bloom “Bloom “Bloom WhereWhere You’re Where You’re Planted” You’re Planted” Planted”

40 YEAR RESIDENT OF HIDDEN HILLS “Bloom Where You’re Planted”

Recent Recent Recent Residential Residential Residential Sales Sales Sales in Our ininOur Our Neighborhood: Neighborhood: Neighborhood StreetStreet Name Street Name Name

Sold Price Sold Sold Price Price Br / BaBrBr / Ba / BaSq. Ft.Sq.Sq. Ft.Ft. Sq. Ft.Sq. Lot Sq. Ft.Ft. LotLo

24655 Wingfield 24655 24655 Wingfield Drive Wingfield Drive Drive

$2,680,000 $2,680,000 $2,680,000 5/3

5/35/3

3,500 3,500 3,500

55,321 55,321 55,321

Recent Residential Sales in Our Neighborhood:

24930 Eldorado 24930 24930 Eldorado Meadow Eldorado Meadow Road Meadow Road Road $2,975,000 $2,975,000 $2,975,000 4/3 Street Name Sold Price Br / Ba 5470 Hoback 5470 5470 Hoback Glen Hoback Road Glen Glen Road Road $3,660,000 $3,660,000 $3,660,000 4/6

4/34/3 3,874 3,874 3,874 64,966 64,966 64,966 Sq. Ft. Sq. Ft. Lot 4/64/6 5,903 5,903 5,903 50,905 50,905 50,905

24530 Deep 24530 24530 Well Deep Deep Well Well 24930 Eldorado Meadow Road

$5,750,000 $5,750,000 $5,750,000 4/3 6/5 $2,975,000

6/56/5 3,8745,750 5,750 5,750 58,307 58,307 58,307 64,966

$14,600,000 $14,600,000 $14,600,000 4/6 7/7 $3,660,000

7/77/7 5,903 13,061 13,061 13,061 75,950 50,905 75,950 75,950

24530 Deep Well $5,750,000 5521 Paradise 5521 5521 Paradise Valley Paradise Rd. Valley Valley Rd.Rd. $22,200,000 $22,200,000 $22,200,000 6/5 6/7

58,307 6/76/7 5,750 14,491 14,491 14,491 323,694323,694 323,694

24655 Wingfield Drive

24400 Little 24400 24400 Valley Little Little Rd. Valley Valley Rd. Rd. 5470 Hoback Glen Road

$2,680,000

5/3

3,500

55,321

24400 Little Valley Rd.

$14,600,000

7/7

13,061

75,950

5521 Paradise Valley Rd.

$22,200,000

6/7

14,491

323,694

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23901 Calabasas 23901 23901 Calabasas Rd., Calabasas Rd., #1050, Rd., Suite Suite Calabasas, #1050, #1050, Calabasas, CA 91302 This is not intended as Suite a solicitation if your property is currently listed withCalabasas, another91302 broker.CA BasedCA on91302 information from the Association of REALTORS®/Multiple Listing as of 04/30/19. All data, including all measurements and calculations of area, is obtained from various sources and has not been, and will not be, verified by broker or MLS. All information should be independently

This is not intended This isThis not as aisintended solicitation notand intended as ifa solicitation your asaccuracy. aproperty solicitation if your is currently ifproperty your property listed is currently is currently another listed with broker. another with Based another broker. on information broker. Based Based onfrom information onthe information Association from the from ofAssociation REALTORS®/Multiple the Association of REALTORS®/Multiple of REALTORS®/Multiple Listing as of 04/30/19. ListingListing as All of 04/30/19. as data, of 04/30/19. All data, All data, reviewed verified for Properties may or may notwith be listed by thelisted office/agent presenting the information. including including all measurements all measurements andofcalculations and of area, offrom isarea, obtained is obtained from various from sources and has andnot hasbeen, been, andverified will andnot will notverified be,orverified by broker byinformation broker or MLS. or All MLS. information All information shouldshould be independently be independently including all measurements and calculations area,calculations is obtained various sources andvarious has notsources been, and will not be, bybe, broker MLS. All should be independently


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blk. in Style: blk. Water Does More

I

t’s surreal to think about the endless options that seem to exist when it comes to something as simple as water. Whether it’s tap water, bottled water, flavored water or sparkling water, the variety goes on and on. Even so, since it’s the literal foundation of life and just about the most necessary resource that exists, the process of deciding which kind of water to hydrate our bodies with shouldn’t be so black and white . . . because according to blk. Water founders, Louise and Jackie Wilkie, it should always be black. Back in 2011, Jackie and Louise were faced with the devastating reality of their mother battling breast cancer. “We were looking for ways to help our mother boost her immune system, increase pain relief, and essentially offer anything that would benefit her while fighting the devastating cancer,” Jackie explains. While researching an abundance of holistic and natural health aides, Louise and

Written By Allie Lebos | Photos by Lindsey Best Jackie came across something called fulvic acid. “At this point, our mother was burnt on pills and medications, so we attempted to mask it in her teas, and within a week we noticed a huge improvement,” recalls Louise. According to the ladies behind blk. Water, one of the most vital and beneficial effects of fulvic minerals is combating vitamin and mineral deficiencies by effectively breaking down, absorbing and transporting key bioavailable nutrients. It is also used to improve digestion, increase energy, reduce inflammation, and remove toxins. After experimenting with various forms and degrees of fulvic acid, the Wilkie sisters decided to create a bottled water to see how people reacted. “When we realized that the fulvic acid turned the water black, we thought, ‘this could be interesting’ and we decided to resist attempting to mask the color,” says Jackie. Being that both Jackie and Louise had Winter Winter 2019/2020  2019  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 29


PEOPLE WHO HAVE SUFFERED FROM LYME DISEASE AND FIBROMYALGIA HAVE SWORN BY THIS PRODUCT. SO SEEING PEOPLE EXPERIENCE THE HEALTH BENEFIT IS REALLY FULFILLING. been involved in the manufacturing business for more than 10 years, including the manufacturing of organic health foods, they decided to move forward with the idea and soon after, blk. Water was born. “At first, we noticed that some people, mostly those age 40 or older, were a bit put off by the idea of drinking black water,” Jackie says. “But eventually we gained quite a bit of traction and recognition from some younger crowds, specifically those interested in natural forms of healthcare.” With the base of blk. bottles being purified alkaline water, blk. also contains 77 naturally-occurring trace minerals, trace elements, amino acids and electrolytes. Whether you suffer from a chronic illness such as diabetes or fibromyalgia, or you’re as healthy as can be and simply want to maintain that health, these added minerals make blk. Water a great addition to anyone's diet. On top of being incredibly health conscience, the Wilkie sisters also place a huge priority on sustainability and the environment. “Originally, we wanted blk. Water to

30 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

be bottled in glass rather than plastic, but the restrictions and complications around utilizing glass made that nearly impossible,” Louise explains. Currently, blk. Water bottles are packaged in BPA-free and recycled plastic. However, with greater effort being put toward creating green and eco-friendly products, the Wilkie sisters are excited about the prospect of moving blk. Water from plastic bottles to cans in the near future. Another exciting venture blk. Water has entered within the last two years is partnering with water.org, an organization started by actor Matt Damon in an attempt to provide clean water and sanitation to people all around the world. The following statistics show just how important blk. Water’s mission of providing safe water is: every 90 seconds a child dies from waterrelated disease, currently 844 million people in the world are living without access to clean water, and finally, each year 1 million people are killed by water, sanitation and hygiene-related disease.


In addition to seeking to solve the clean water crisis, blk. Water has also played an active role in helping those affected by natural disasters. For example, just last year during the Woolsey Fire, blk. Water stepped up to the plate to help their neighbors in Malibu. “During Woolsey, we parked the blk. Water van on the beach and handed out waters to all of those who had to evacuate their homes,” recalls blk. Water partner, Sara Bergstein. In 2017, blk. Water also donated 27 pallets containing 40,000 water bottles to support relief efforts for the victims of Hurricane Harvey in Houston. Though Jackie and Louise Wilkie moved to Hidden Hills just over a year ago, they have managed to make themselves feel right at home. “Having Jackie and Louise transition from Canada to here in Hidden Hills has helped tremendously,” Sarah explains. Being able to be a part of and connect with a community that appreciates nature and cares about the environment has been both inspiring and fitting for the Wilkie sisters. “We love it here,” says Jackie. “We’ve really made an effort to be involved and it’s been great to see how much this community cares for one another and gives back.”

In fact, if you’re a Hidden Hills resident, don’t be surprised if the holidays bring you a blk. Water surprise. “Last year following the Woolsey fires we thought ‘why don’t we have the blk. van drive around and deliver a box of blk. Water to the doorstep of every Hidden Hills resident for Christmas?’ and so that’s what we did,” Louise explains. Also, the ladies have been a part of the local farmers market as well as the first Hidden Hills PopUp Marketplace that took place this past June. For the Wilkie sisters, the journey they have been taken on since starting blk. Water has been everything. “The best part of it all is receiving feedback from the customers,” says Jackie. “Even though it may be a little over-thetop, we’ve literally had people write us and tell us that blk. Water has saved their life. People who have suffered from Lyme disease and fibromyalgia have sworn by this product. So seeing people experience the health benefit is really fulfilling.” As for what’s next for the women behind blk. Water, there is much in the works that is currently under wraps. But according to Louise Wilkie, “You’ll know when it hits.”

BLK. WATER IS AVAILABLE IN A VARIETY OF FLAVORS. EACH TAILORED TO A SPECIFIC HOLISTIC BENEFIT.

FOR THE WILKIE SISTERS, THE JOURNEY THAT THEY HAVE BEEN TAKEN ON SINCE STARTING BLK. WATER HAS BEEN EVERYTHING.

For more information on blk. Water please visit www.getblk.com.

Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 31


Christmas

‘Tis the season to discover Aldik Home, LA’s favorite Winter Wonderland!

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the hidden hills

PONY CLUB WRITTEN BY ALLIE LEBOS | PHOTOS BY MARCO FRANCHINA

H

idden Hills has an enviable reputation as a renowned community for a multitude of reasons. From beautiful homes and spacious land that is difficult to come by in Los Angeles, to the warm and family-friendly atmosphere, there is no wonder why this charming town is so appreciated by those lucky enough to call it home. However, one of the most unique aspects of Hidden Hills can be found in its love and support of all things equestrian. Many years ago, Hidden Hills had a popular Pony Club, where education about horses and horseback riding was made available to all. After the Pony Club was shut down, quite some time passed since any opportunity of that

sort has been readily available to Hidden Hills residents. However, Sarah Phillips and her team of equestrian experts are now on the road to changing that. Though it recently just started anew, Sarah’s revival of the Hidden Hills Pony Club has already made an impact on the children and families that have joined up. “Hidden Hills is such a unique community when it comes to this equestrian foundation because it has three huge arenas and over 25 miles of riding trails,” explains Sarah. “There are a ton of properties with barns and stables where people house and care for their own horses, so it’s really amazing to be surrounded by people who share this same passion. That being

MEMBERS OF THE HIDDEN HILLS PONY CLUB (L TO R): LAUREN BARRETT, ABIGAIL PHILLIPS, SOPHIA PHILLIPS, SARAH PHILLIPS, JACK McKEOWN, KALI HOWE, MAGGIE CHRISTIAN, ANGELA HOWE (TRAINER), ESTHER McKEOWN, EMILY WILLIAMS (ASSISTANT), EVE McKEOWN

Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 33


PONY CLUB IS A GREAT WAY TO BRING YOUNG RIDERS TOGETHER, TO NOT ONLY MAKE FRIENDSHIPS, BUT ALSO TO CONTINUE THE TRADITIONS THAT MAKE HIDDEN HILLS THE GREAT PLACE THAT IT IS.

ABOVE: LAUREN BARRETT, ABIGAIL PHILLIPS AND SOPHIA PHILLIPS MOUNT UP. RIGHT: KALI HOWE EXECUTES A JUMP. OPPOSITE PAGE: PONY CLUB IS AS MUCH A BONDING EXPERIENCE AS AN EQUESTRIAN EXERCISE. TOP: KALI HOWE AND MAGGIE CHRISTIAN. BOTTOM: SOPHIA PHILLIPS TENDS TO HER PONY.

34 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

said, it’s important to provide a place for these people to connect, and what better way to do that then bring back the Pony Club?” Her love for horses and anything and everything equestrian is actually what inspired Sarah and her family to move to Hidden Hills three years ago. “I started meeting a lot of people

Pony Club to revolve around support and fun, rather than adhering to the more expensive or competitive side of equestrianism,” explains Sarah. Sarah and the rest of the team at the Hidden Hills Pony Club run their program through Pony Club USA. According to The United States Pony Club, Inc., “Pony Club is the largest equestrian educational organization

in the area and we got talking about the Pony Club and how, for many of these people, it was one of the most amazing experiences of their life,” Sarah says. Being that she has two little ones of her own, Sarah decided it was time to create a supportive environment where children could ride together and learn as a group. “I really wanted the foundation of the

in the world . . . The cornerstones of our foundation are education, safety, sportsmanship, stewardship and FUN. Members learn riding and the care of horses through mounted sports. The skills, habits and values instilled through horsemanship will apply to every part of a member’s life.” Though their endeavors have been off to a fantastic start, the Hidden Hills Pony Club has still faced a few


challenges in their mission of expansion. “One of the biggest challenges in Hidden Hills is the lack of equestrian centers where you can stable horses and provide lesson programs. There are a ton of one-acre properties and a lot of people have their own barns, but this makes it difficult for the children who may not have their own horses to participate,” Sarah explains. “So as of now, the majority of the kids partaking in the Club ride over to us at the community arenas on their own horses. However, the goal is hopefully to be able to expand our resources and allow kids who don’t


have their own horses to be just as involved.” In the meantime, the Hidden Hills Pony Club has made it a priority to provide some nonmounted meets so that any and all children who are interested can be included in the learning process of horseback riding.

ABIGAIL PHILLIPS AND LAUREN BARRETT

MAGGIE CHRISTIAN

In addition, the Hidden Hills Pony Club just recently sponsored a vaulting clinic at the Spring Valley Arena. Vaulting, when it comes to the equestrian world, is essentially the art of practicing dance or gymnastics while on the back of a horse. “It was an incredible event. We invited everyone in the whole community to join,” states Sarah. “We brought in three big Draft horses and the kids really had an amazing time. Simply watching them as they stood up on the back of these gigantic horses and practice what they had just learned was really rewarding to witness.” Though the Pony Club in Hidden Hills just recently launched, the impact it is has started to make on the lives of these children cannot be understated. For many parents in the community, the benefits are undeniable. According to Lisa Austin, mother of Pony Club member Sofia Austin, “Sofia is thrilled to be a part of the Hidden Hills Pony Club. Hidden Hills started as a horse community and has seemed to veer off that path. Pony Club is a great way to bring young riders together, to not only make friendships, but also to continue the traditions that make Hidden Hills the great place that it is.” For Sarah, witnessing this system of support and friendship unfold has been made her mission of bringing Pony Club back to Hidden Hills more than worth it. “I know that the parents are just as grateful as the children are. In the old days, you would see kids trail riding all the time,” says Sarah. “It’s just not as much fun riding alone, and in all honesty it can be a bit scary. So being able to bring these kids together and create that bond really is the goal of Pony Club.” Not long ago, as she was driving through town, Sarah noticed two kids who had not known each other before Pony Club, trail riding together. As the tradition of Pony Club brings the Hidden Hills community back to its roots, Sarah hopes that members will encourage others to join and experience the joys that it has to offer.

EVE McKEOWN

36 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020


CHANDELIERS + TULIPS VISIT US @ WHIZEN MARKET SQ. / 28857 AGOURA RD / 805.807.4704 / CHANDELIERSANDTULIPS.COM

Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 37


Vines Wines and the Best of times DISCOVER THE BARN AT CIELO FARMS WRITTEN BY DEBBIE YANUCK


THE DOORS, THROWN WIDE OPEN, REVEAL THE EXPANSIVE VIEWS OF THE SADDLE ROCK MOUNTAINS, THE MALIBU SKYLINE, AND THE INTIMATE TABLES AND BENCHES SURROUNDING THE TASTING ROOM.

the grounds greeting returning and new guests as the friends they are and the friends they will soon become. Private events, wine tasting and vineyard tours draw the guests, while the magical atmosphere, lush grounds and cozy feel bring them back again and again.

OVER THE PAST FEW YEARS THE HIRSH FAMILY'S VINEYARD AND ESTATE HAS EVOLVED TO BECOME A DESTINATION FOR THOSE WHO LOVE GREAT WINES AND THE GRANDEUR OF OUR LOCAL MOUNTAINS

O

ne short turn off Mulholland Highway and visitors are transported to the wonderland that is Cielo Farms, Malibu. Walk the short path to The Barn, and the experience begins. The stone Tuscan farmhouse is decorated with stunning photos of Rock and Roll icons: Mick Jagger, Neil Young, Keith Richards and Robert Plant. The doors, thrown wide open, reveal the expansive views of the Saddle Rock mountains, the Malibu skyline, and the intimate tables and benches surrounding the tasting room. A musician sits tucked close to a nearby water feature strumming a guitar in harmony with the conversations and laughter of the guests. Owner and founder, Richard Hirsh, and his son, Robert Hirsh, COO, stroll

40 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

A simple bike ride along Kanan highway in the 1980’s led successful entrepreneur and avid outdoorsman, Richard Hirsh to the future home of his private residence, vineyard and wine tasting room; it’s a piece of land with views of the Saddle Rock mountains. He and his wife, Diana, fell in love with the view and ended up purchasing 18 acres, which later grew to almost 30 acres, and began the gradual evolution of Cielo Farms. Richard, Diana, and his brother Bill worked on the 20-year project with architect Bob Easton, who designed the layout of the property that included: The Barn, Richard and Diana’s home, the vineyards and the surrounding grounds. During the grading of the property, the stones were saved and used on the outside of The Barn and their home. Saltillo tiles cover the roof,


Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 41


completing the Tuscan look to the property. The first two acres of vineyards, planted in 2000, have now grown to 10 acres, while 1,000 cases of wine per year are now made. The grapes are harvested in September and October and the Estate grapes are sent up to Silenus Winery in Napa Valley where Jason Moore oversees the making of the wine. The Woodstock wine is made from blended grapes in the Central Coast and Napa Valley. Richard’s brother Bill, who passed away a few years ago, was “the energy behind the wine effort,” Richard says. “He always loved the winery lifestyle and his enthusiasm led him to become a part of our growth.” Their shared love of rock music led them to labeling their mixed grape brand of wine “Woodstock.” The brothers’ sense of whimsy, and Diana's pleasure in the outdoors, fueled the template for the creation of a place where people gather to relax, unwind and bask in the beauty of nature. Last year, as the Woolsey fire raged overhead, Richard and his family evacuated the property, not knowing what they would find when they returned. The stone structures, Saltillo tile roofs and the drip system-watered vineyards protected the property, leaving them with losing a few structures and extensive tree and other landscape damage, while the home and Barn structures received very little damage. “Look at the new olive trees we’ve planted,” Richard points out. “They have doubled in size in less than a year.” As he gazes out, he continues, “So many of our neighbors lost everything. We are a small tightknit community and we are all doing everything we can to help anyone who needs our help.” The panoramic views at Cielo Farms make it the perfect place for weddings, parties and corporate events. Up to 42 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020


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THE PANORAMIC VIEWS AT CIELO FARMS MAKE IT THE PERFECT PLACE FOR WEDDINGS, PARTIES AND CORPORATE EVENTS. UP TO 200 GUESTS COMFORTABLY FIT ONTO THE SPRAWLING GROUNDS, WITHOUT LOSING ANY OF THE NATURAL SERENITY AND PEACE.

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200 guests comfortably fit onto the sprawling grounds, without losing any of the natural serenity and peace. Whether guests stroll the ‘Centipede’ fence-lined pathway to even more astounding views, dance, eat and sip, nothing detracts from the wondrous feel of the property. The tasting room offers four different tasting experiences that showcase their Woodstock wines, the Estate wines, and tours of the vineyards, along with pairings of chocolates and cheeses. 20 wines exclusive to Cielo Farms are part of the tasting that features Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot, Viognier,

Petit Syrah and Malbec varieties. The Cielo Farms wine club suggests three different levels of wine club membership and enables the novice to the expert wine connoisseur to equally enjoy the level of choices. The wine tasting is the event, but the enchanting sunsets, the fire pits at each table, and the ocean-scented air combine to make the experience uniquely wonderful. The Hirsh’s vision and business acumen enabled them to create an oasis where people come together to share a bottle of wine, sample different flavors, and nibble on cheese and chocolate plates, all while viewing an unending expanse of

mountains. The drive is easy and quick, the grounds accessible, and because reservations are required, there is never a sense of too many people squeezing into one place. Tables, benches, lounges and chairs are abundant. The twinkle lights, the discretely flowing water sounds, and the soft breezes produce a fairy-tale-like effect. Cielo Farms is a place to savor along with their flavorful wines, good company and easy conversations. 31424 MULHOLLAND HWY, MALIBU, CA AT THE INTERSECTION OF KANAN ROAD. WOODSTOCKMALIBU.COM

Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 45


The Improta Team Makes the Difference F EATUR E D P RO P E RT I ES & SA L ES

Compass is a real estate broker licensed by the State of California and abides by Equal Housing Opportunity laws. License Number 01991628. All material presented herein is intended for informational purposes only and is compiled from sources deemed reliable but has not been verified. Changes in price, condition, sale or withdrawal may be made without notice. No statement is made as to accuracy of any description. All measurements and square footages are approximate. This is not intended to solicit property already listed.

Jacob Hamblin Hidden Hills | $3,799,000

ACTIVE

Prado de la Mariposa Calabasas | $3,215,000

Prado de las Bellotas Calabasas | $2,875,000

SOLD

Prado de la Puma Calabasas | $2,855,000

SOL D

Prado de las Panteras Calabasas | $2,474,000

SOLD

Paseo Primario Calabasas | $2,199,000

I N ESC ROW

Adele Woodland Hills | $1,050,000 IN ESCROW

Farmfield Calabasas | $1,095,000

Alhama Woodland Hills | $918,000

SOLD

Royer West Hills | $899,000

Alizia Canyon Calabasas | 526,000

SOLD

Warwick Thousand Oaks | $490,000

SOL D

ACTIVE

SOL D

SO LD

Prado del Trigo Calabasas | $2,775,000

SO LD

Via Sedona Newbury Park | $2,010,000

SO LD

Ruthwood Calabasas | $940,000

SOL D

Cedarhaven Agoura Hills | $930,000

SO LD

Califa North Hollywood | $799,000

SOL D

Cohasset Los Angeles | $708,000

SO LD

Mulholland Malibou Lake | $350,000 I N ESC ROW

Jason Improta

Melissa Improta

Estate Agent jason@improta.com 310.597.1915 DRE 01432200

Estate Agent missy@improta.com 310.597.1914 DRE 01265975

Prado de las Peras Calabasas | $12,500

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THE LITTLE BLUE BOUTIQUE 4774 Park Granada #7 Calabasas, CA 91302 (818) 225-8078 thelittleblueboutique.com 48 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019 2019/2020


SHOP LOCAL

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A. 18K ROSE GOLD EMERALD CUT DIAMOND SOLITAIRE RING BY RAHAMINOV DIAMONDS $135,000. B. 18K YELLOW GOLD OVAL LINK CUFF WITH 2 PAVE DIAMOND LINKS $35,895. C. 18K WHITE GOLD INSIDE/OUTSIDE DIAMOND HOOP EARRINGS BY NORMAN SILVERMAN $66,000.

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POLACHECK’S JEWELERS 4719 Commons Way Calabasas, CA 91302 (818) 225-0600 Polachecks.com

Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 49


French LE CONCEPT STORE WHITE BALANCE BIKE A THROWBACK TO THE CLASSICS, BANWOOD CRAFTS VINTAGE-INSPIRED BICYCLES FOR YOUNG CHILDREN. INFLUENCED BY TRADITIONAL SCANDINAVIAN DESIGN, FEATURING A DETACHABLE RATTAN WICKER BASKET AS WELL AS FAUX-LEATHER GRIPS AND SADDLES, BANWOOD BICYCLES ARE ARE SAFE AND DURABLE. THEIR BALANCE BIKE IS AN IDEAL TRAINING BICYCLE THAT SUPPORTS THE DEVELOPMENT OF YOUR CHILD’S NATURAL MOTOR SKILLS, ENCOURAGING THEM TO USE THEIR OWN BALANCE TO MOVE FORWARD -A PERFECT CHOICE FOR A FIRST BIKE! $198.

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FACE & BODY SKINCARE BALM, OIL AND SOAP FROM FRANCE HANDCRAFTED IN THE SOUTH OF FRANCE, IN SMALL BATCHES BY THE ARTISANS THEMSELVES, OPPIDUM PRODUCTS ARE MADE ONLY FROM 100% NATURAL, CERTIFIED COSMOS ORGANIC PLANT-BASED INGREDIENTS. CENTERING AROUND THE PURE AND ACTIVE SYNERGIES OF UNALTERED PRECIOUS AND ESSENTIAL OILS, OPPIDUM’S CURATED RANGE OF NOURISHING SOAPS, OILS AND BALMS ARE AS DELIGHTFULLY LUXURIANT AS THEY ARE EFFECTIVE. $129 SET OF 3.

50 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019

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Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 51


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Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 53


HOPE

for the GIRLS

WRITTEN BY DEBBIE YANUCK | EVENT PHOTOS BY CECILIA BELLISSIMO

R

ecently, Tammy and David Wood hosted “An Afternoon in the Garden” in the backyard of their Hidden Hills home to benefit the Mona Foundation. Close to 100 people showed up to give to and embrace the Foundation’s powerful message: “Education, Empower, Transform.” Founded in 1999, the Mona Foundation “supports grassroots initiatives around the world that educate all children, empower women and girls, and enable them to

have to offer the world when given the chance. The Mona Foundation was founded in 1999 by a small group of people committed to making life better for all children. It supports grassroots educational initiatives that provide education to all children, increase opportunities for women and girls, and emphasizes service to the community. Their goal is to alleviate global poverty and support community-led

THE MONA FOUNDATION WAS FOUNDED IN 1999 BY A SMALL GROUP OF PEOPLE COMMITTED TO MAKING LIFE BETTER FOR ALL CHILDREN.

transform their own communities.” A musician played the guitar with passion and grace as guests strolled through the blooming yard, watched a moving video that showed the children and adults who benefit from the education supported through the Mona Foundation, ate from a delicious Indian buffet, and listened to members explain why their work with the Foundation is important to them. Throughout the entire event, there were tears, gentle smiles, and a deep appreciation for the incredible people who, while benefiting from the Foundation, are at the same time teaching everyone about the gifts they

54 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

transformation such that no child ever goes to bed hungry, is lost to preventable diseases, or is deprived of the gift of education for lack of resources. “Mona is our Malala,” says Tammy. . .“except that Malala lived after the attempt on her life and Mona did not, so it is up to us to be her voice and to implement her goals and dreams of education for all children and the empowerment of women and girls.” Mona was 17 years old when she was arrested and later executed in 1983 for her beliefs as a Baha'i and for teaching children’s classes. Mona loved children and volunteered in an orphanage from a young age. She was also an outspoken defender of human

TOP: LEARNING UNDER THE MANGO TREES, A CHILD AT ONE OF ONE OF THE MANY EDUCATIONAL INITIATIVES AROUND THE WORLD THAT MONA FOUNDATION SUPPORTS. BOTTOM: DAVID AND TAMMY WOOD PRESENTING AT THE EVENT.


Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 55


THE MONA FOUNDATION SUPPORTS SCHOOLS AND PROGRAMS THAT SERVE ECONOMICALLY DISADVANTAGED COMMUNITIES.

rights and wrote an essay on “Freedom.” When this essay was discovered, she was deemed “an enemy of the state,” arrested and, after a year of imprisonment, was executed. Her youth, courage and commitment to education, service and social justice inspired the founders to name the Foundation after her. The Mona Foundation “supports schools and programs that serve economically disadvantaged communities. These initiatives focus on academic excellence, fine arts, character development, and service to train capable, ethical and altruistic students who contribute to the betterment of their families, communities and ultimately their nation.” David Wood says, “If you educate one girl, you impact the lives of 100.” The Foundation finds remarkable educational institutions all over the world and partners with them by lending support with what they need to reach their goals. Through this method, the costs remain low, as the educators and schools are already in place. The initiatives/ schools supported through the Foundation now 56 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

number 18 and are located in Vietnam, Mongolia, Panama, Brazil, Haiti, India, The Gambia, Sierra Leone and the United States. The Foundation raises between one and two million dollars a year. Due to the generosity of one loyal donor who stepped up to fund the already conservative overhead, the Foundation this year reports that 100% of every dollar goes to the projects they support. The cost to educate one child is roughly $500 per year, and sometimes much less, which means contributions go far. A speaker at the luncheon, Nava Ghalili, a San Diego charter member, is one of the youngest news anchors in the history of American Television and an active youth empowerment activist. She stated, “It is a simple fact. Educating girls is the most powerful and effective way to reduce global poverty.” She pointed out the important focus areas of the Mona Foundation: universal education, gender equality and community building. The more

TOP LEFT: SAWSAN RAFIIDI, TAMMY WOOD AND LESLEY MARVIN, NEIGHBORS OF THE WOOD'S. BOTTOM LEFT: DAVID WOOD ENJOYING THE EVENT. RIGHT: MONA FOUNDATION’S ANNUAL REPORT ON THE SCHOOLS IT SUPPORTS ALL AROUND THE WORLD.


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agmillworks.com Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 57


support the Foundation gives to these areas, the more these children can help to reduce poverty in their communities. “We need these people . . . we need these fresh minds to come online to figure out solutions to problems facing the world . . . and we can help them achieve this by not simply bestowing charity, but through education,” said Nava to her rapt audience. TOP LEFT: HAPPY TO BE AT SCHOOL. WITH ITS PARTNER IN LUCKNOW, STUDY HALL FOUNDATION, MONA FOUNDATION HAS PROVIDED FUNDING TO BUILD 27 GYANSETUS OR “NON FORMAL LEARNING CENTERS” POSITIONED IN PLACES OF ABJECT POVERTY PROVIDING EDUCATION TO CHILDREN WHO WOULD OTHERWISE HAVE NO ACCESS TO SCHOOL. BOTTOM LEFT: DR. MAHNAZ JAVID (FOUNDER OF MONA FOUNDATION) AND TAMMY RANDALL WOOD (A MEMBER OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF MONA FOUNDATION) MEETING THE TEACHER AT ONE OF ITS NON FORMAL LEARNING CENTERS, THIS ONE LOCATED IN ONE OF THE POOREST URBAN SLUMS IN INDIA. RIGHT: DR. MAHNAZ JAVID WITH THE GRADUATING CLASS OF BARLI INSTITUTE FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF RURAL WOMEN. A REMARKABLE SCHOOL IN INDORE GIVING THE POOREST WOMEN IN RURAL VILLAGES THE OPPORTUNITY TO BECOME LITERATE AND LEARN A VOCATION, OFTEN AGAINST THE WISHES OF THEIR FATHERS AND HUSBANDS.

58 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

Another two speakers, husband and wife Lauren and Paul Davison, spoke of their involvement in the Foundation and the positive effect it has had in their lives. A few years ago, Lauren was diagnosed with a large brain tumor and as she was being wheeled into surgery, she whispered into her husband’s ear, “You make sure to give our children the best education possible.” She survived to fulfill her wishes to educate their children and

continues to work to enable as many children as possible to receive an education. The Davisons believe their work with the Mona Foundation will help eliminate poverty through universal education and gender equality. During the Wood’s afternoon event, the story of Poonam, a young Indian girl, was shared. Poonam loved school but her family could not afford the cost. In addition, girls like Poonam are often forced into child marriage as young as 11 years old, so school was not necessarily in the cards for Poonam. But at age 12, Poonam received a scholarship from the Mona Foundation to attend Study Hall Foundation in Lucknow, which teaches girls their rights and helps them advocate for themselves and resist early childhood marriage. When Poonam graduated high school, she


went back to her village and began teaching children who otherwise would not have had the opportunity to go to school. Children from the surrounding areas enthusiastically now gather underneath the mango trees six days a week to attend Poonam’s classes. Poonam also continues her studies with the help of the Mona Foundation, earned her Bachelor’s degree and is now studying for her Master’s degree. She supports her entire family and is someone her whole village admires. Tammy visited Poonam last month in her rural village and watched her teach her class. "It was more of a thrill than I can even describe,” says Tammy. The kind of education that the Mona Foundation supports focuses not only on academics, but also on character education and the importance of service to the community. In her presentation, Tammy pointed out that Poonam is the perfect example of how this kind of holistic education impacts society and begins to transform it. Tammy and David have been involved with the Mona Foundation for about eight years and now serve on its Board of Directors. In the last 16 months, they have visited schools that Mona supports in Haiti, Panama,

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India, and just last month, a potential new project in Savannah, Georgia. "Our careers keep us busy, but the work we do on behalf of the Mona Foundation brings perspective to our day-to-day lives and a deeply meaningful sense of purpose,” says Tammy. Tammy and David met when they were 17 and 19, respectively, and married a few years later. Through hard work and a passion for business, they built their careers while raising their two children. Tammy is the founder and principal of Interior Archaeology, a design firm specializing in interior architectural services, coast-to-coast, with a focus on freshly tailored furnishings. David, the former VP of North America for the Bose Corporation, is now CEO of Interactive Health based in Long Beach. They grew up in Southern California but moved to Connecticut in their early 20’s to serve their educations and careers. When they returned eight years ago, they purchased a Spanish Colonial compound on Kanan Road that was heavily damaged during the Woolsey Fire, prompting their move to Hidden Hills. Instead of lamenting the upheaval, Tammy says “Sometimes it’s the tragedies

TOP LEFT: GIRLS AT PRERNA SCHOOL IN LUCKNOW THAT MONA FOUNDATION SUPPORTS. THEY TOLD TAMMY, “WE ARE THE NEXT WORLD LEADERS!”. BOTTOM LEFT: ONE OF THE GOVERNMENT SCHOOLS FOR GIRLS THAT NOW TEACH A CURRICULUM, DEVELOPED BY MONA’S FOUNDATIONS PARTER STUDY HALL FOUNDATION, INCORPORATING HIGH QUALITY EDUCATION FOR GIRLS THAT INCLUDE A FOCUS ON THEIR EMPOWERMENT AND BREAKING THE CULTURAL NORMS THAT ENCOURAGE EARLY CHILDHOOD MARRIAGE. RIGHT: UNDER IMPOSSIBLE CONDITIONS; OFTEN HUNGRY AND WITH NO RUNNING WATER FOR BASIC HYGIENE, CHILDREN SHOW UP WITH ENTHUSIASM TO ATTEND SCHOOL.

SOMETIMES IT’S THE TRAGEDIES IN LIFE THAT WIND UP CHASING YOU TO THE VERY PLACE YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO BE. in life that wind up chasing you to the very place you’re supposed to be.” Tammy and David both agree that as they come together to help others, they create the kind of community where they want to live. Tammy explains, “We are helping ourselves without realizing it. Friendships have a deeper depth because they are focused on something greater than us and we are seeing the best in one another.” This past year, Tammy and David embraced the openhearted community of Hidden Hills and decided to stay for good. The Wood’s luncheon ended with an auction where guests bid for items they did not necessarily need. But with generous hearts and open wallets, they purchased each and every item put up to auction. In three short hours, the guests bonded over one shared goal: to help impoverished children become educated so that they too could reach their potential and help others in need. 60 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020


elegance. comfort. style & Grace.

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HIDDEN HILLS RESIDENT, STEVE WEBER, CENTER, WITH PARTNERS JON AUSTIN, DOUG PLANK AND HARRIS WALI.


PROTECTED STATUS BY JASON DEAN

AFTER A NEAR-DEATH EXPERIENCE, HIDDEN HILLS RESIDENT STEVE WEBER SETS UP SHOP TO HELP OTHERS PROTECT THEMSELVES AND THEIR FAMILIES

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t took a tragedy during the “trip of a lifetime” for Hidden Hills Resident, Steve Weber, to consider his mortality and just how quickly life can take a drastic turn. On the second day of a group dirt bike tour through Baja California back in 2007, Weber was injured. Though seriously hurt, he continued on against his better judgment for the third and final day to reach their destination for a photo with his best friend Andrew at a stunning vista on the edge of the Pacific. Immediately after, Weber was rushed to a Mexican hospital. “I was lying flat on a table where I lost consciousness,” he recalls. Weber woke up four days later in a San Diego hospital after multiple surgeries and a medically induced coma. While on the road to recovery, the media and manufacturing entrepreneur looked into life insurance for the first time. It was something he had always intended to get done, but like most Americans, had delayed because making an informed decision with the best information available was hardly an easy task. Now, even with a newfound urgency, Weber had to

force himself through the process. He came away from the experience thinking there had to be a better way. About a year after his accident, Weber met Harris Wali, whose company HW Premier Insurance provided wealth transfer and estate protection strategies, as well as other high-end services to families across the U.S.. Wali agreed that there was a vast market to be served, as the average, everyday American did not have convenient and clear access to the depth and breadth of options that higher-end individuals had. The timing was right, and Weber shifted his career focus, joining the company as president. Weber and Wali founded QuoteHero in 2017, intent on developing a safe, secure, and highly functional platform for the typical consumer to review and secure an affordable life insurance policy. Soon after, tech entrepreneur Doug Plank joined the firm as CEO, seeing the opportunity to expand the offering even further to include a portfolio of life management tools, known today as MyProtectionHero. Using a proprietary search engine, MyProtectionHero brings together the widest variety of sources

Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 63


WEBER, RIGHT, AT THE END OF THE BAJA ADVENTURE THAT CHANGED HIS LIFEPERSPECTIVE AND PROFESSIONAL PATH

and existing services to help an individual get the most important “to-do’s” in their life squared-away. Not only does the platform provide a vast array of the best options for the consumer while keeping it all clear, concise and simple, but it goes even further, offering free secure storage, free financial tools, even a free Will and other varied lifestyle and protection coverages. Weber likens MyProtectionHero to a site like Kayak or Travelocity, where visitors can compare multiple itineraries, airlines, airports, dates, and other variables when booking a flight, except with this, it’s the things that help a person sleep soundly at night. With protection at the core of its mission, QuoteHero also does not 64 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

sell the names of its users to other companies. Anyone who has been barraged by unsolicited calls and emails shortly after searching for a random quote will understand the value in that. In the world of business, MyProtectionHero, offers whitelabel and enterprise level solutions, making the offering a plug-andplay option to be integrated into any company website. While the suite of MyProtectionHero offerings is an attractive perk, the collective goal to create a “one-stop, safe and secure shopping” environment not only serves as a wellspring of useful life management content and tools, but also helps businesses maintain

a strong connection with employees or clients. “That close call in Baja definitely changed my perspective on life for the better, but from a professional standpoint, when I see what MyProtectionHero has evolved into, it’s not so much about disrupting the “fintech” sector or making waves in business,” Weber reflects.” “It’s an added layer of satisfaction knowing that what we’ve created is helping so many others to avoid the mistake I almost made.”


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Special Featured Business Section


ROCKING YOUR WORLD MULTI-FACETED AND BRILLIANT, RAIMAN ROCKS IS A CALABASAS TREASURE. WRITTEN BY JODY MILLER | PHOTO BY MARCO FRANCHINA

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symbol of courage and valor. Of love that is invincible. Devotion that is infinite. Originating from the Greek word adamas –unconquerable and indestructible. Taking over a billion year to form under immense heat and pressure, only a few survive the journey to the earth’s surface. The Greeks associated the diamond’s mighty brilliance with the unbreakable bond of love. For over 35 years, Gall Raiman has lived and breathed diamonds. After earning his GIA and AGS certificates, he built and managed jewelry manufacturing facilities in downtown Los Angeles where he perfected his mastery of diamonds and gems to become one of the most respected experts in the industry.

66 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

Raiman and his GIA-certificated team at Raiman Rocks are leaders of the trends and techniques that drive not only the diamond industry, but its enigmatic appeal and the business of customer relations and loyalty. Their vast connections grant them the strategic privilege to source gems of superior quality, including cherished and rare colored diamonds at a substantial value to buyers, both retail and wholesale that cannot be obtained elsewhere. Raiman Rocks pieces are one-of-a-kind creations of platinum and 18K gold and curated with only the finest diamonds and gems. The meticulous quality and craftsmanship rival the most recognized designers of the world.

Trust is the Core

“It’s about integrity. Everyone needs a trustworthy doctor, lawyer, mechanic, and a jeweler. That’s where we come in.” Gall Raiman. Raiman lives by this philosophy. Knowledge without integrity has little value. “We stand above because we are trustworthy,” he states. “We’re honest. We’re professionals, and we have more than 35 years of experience in the business.” What is the importance of trustworthy when it comes to buying, selling, or trading fine and rare jewelry? What makes Raiman Rocks that rare gem among diamond dealers? Most significantly, they work exclusively with the Gemological Institute of America. The GIA originated the science of grading diamonds with the 4cs –


cut, color, clarity, and carats. They uphold the most rigid standards with unwavering objectivity and accuracy. And while there are other certification labs, Raiman does not accept less than the absolute best. Raiman stresses the standard of a GIA certification because in addition to selling, Raiman Rocks is a major buyer and seller of estate jewelry. “You see people come in with all kinds of reports and appraisals,” Raiman muses. These reports are often inaccurate and misleading. Sometimes the appraiser is unqualified, or worse, unethical. Raiman Rocks offers complimentary evaluations to everyone. There is no future obligation and this is why they have become such a vital resource to the community and are like family to their customers.

Diamonds are Forever As experts in rare and colored diamonds, Raiman and his staff know better than anyone that fine jewelry is an investment and a family asset. People are often at a loss when they inherit valuable gems or how to determine its worth when comprising a will. In addition to complimentary appraisals, they offer an official insurance appraisal and guidance for a modest fee. For those seeking to capitalize, they offer investmentgrade, large and natural, fancy color diamonds. Raiman Rocks is anything but a typical jewelry seller. Not a store, it’s a private showroom where each and every client is the recipient of paramount service and attention. It is where you can purchase the most prized diamonds in the world, or recreate older or inherited pieces into modern works of art. They also offer a consignment service with a very favorable commission structure. It is where you can receive direction and recommendations given honestly and objectively, with the warmth and caring of a proud family establishment.

RAIMAN ROCKS

23622 Calabasas Road, Ste III, Calabasas, CA 91302 818.884.2222 | RAIMANROCKS.COM

Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 67


WRITTEN BY JODY MILLER | PHOTOS BY ZACK BENSON

BELMONT VILLAGE calabasas “The Golden Years.” That familiar phrase is actually younger than most American retirees. An advertisement for Sun City, the phrase was coined in 1959 to promote an idyllic locale of relaxation, free from the restraints of work and responsibility. On a somewhat more ominous note, it signifies the interval before physical and mental decline. Today’s senior care advertisements assure safety and comfort. But what about a place to thrive? A place to live life in a meaningful present. Conveniently nestled in the heart of Calabasas, Belmont Village is an award-winning senior living community where consummate elegance is merged with cuttingedge care and therapeutics that are 68 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

unsurpassed by communities of its kind. Uncompromising in its comfort, amenities compare to those of a luxury urban retreat, complete with a professionally staffed fitness center, on-site therapy services, a licensed nurse and staff available 24/7, a full-service salon for women and men, technology center, restaurantstyle and chef-prepared dining, coffee bistro, and a concierge service that includes complimentary transportation to appointments or excursions. All this in addition to a full calendar of daily activities to suit varied interests and abilities that cultivate not only social interaction, but also purpose and belonging. Plush surroundings alone are not what make Belmont Village stand above its

peers. Tiered care levels provide a seamless transition from one life stage to another, with wraparound services that are whole-person centered. Their integrative Whole Brain Fitness program has been implemented to optimize brain and memory function. Executive Director Nancy Nelson provides insight on this innovative concept: “Our Whole Brain Fitness Lifestyle encourages successful aging at every care level by nurturing and engaging mind, body and spirit each day,” she explains. “The lifestyle focuses on seven essential elements – nutrition and physical exercise, mental workouts and lifelong learning, reduced stress, a strong social network and a sense of purpose.”


BELMONT VILLAGE CALABASAS 24141 Ventura Blvd Calabasas, CA 91302 818.222.2600

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Typical days include opportunities to exercise the different domains of the brain - critical thinking, sequencing, memory-body movement and problem solving. Residents who are more independent can choose from a robust calendar of activities, including chair yoga, aqua fit, crafts, lectures and specialized projects. Those with mild to more advanced memory loss follow a more structured activity schedule in small groups of residents with similar abilities, adapted to deliver the appropriate level of challenge. Life transitions can cause emotional upheaval at any age. Changing schools or jobs, moving to a new city, etc. While most seniors have experienced a myriad of life

transitions, the move to assisted living is often met with resistance, fear and trepidation. It’s an evolution into a new chapter in which the entire staff at Belmont Village ensure that is not only smooth, but joyful. “We go through a discovery phase to get to know each of our residents – their life stories, likes and dislikes – to better understand how to best care for him or her,” says Nelson. In fact, many residents admit that after settling in, they wished they had made the move earlier. Being free from obligations that made life more difficult and isolating, the bountiful opportunities for social involvement and ability to enjoy time with family result in a re-engagement with life and a renewed sense of purpose.”

Belmont Village welcomes visits from family and loved ones, including the grand- and great-grandchildren. There are ample indoor and outdoor spaces for conversation and relaxation, and visitors are welcome to dine in the restaurant or bistro (the Cobb salad and grilled salmon are guest favorites). Residents often take excursions off property to enjoy family and friends, and maintain connections in their local neighborhoods. Belmont Village sets a high standard for itself and the residents are active members of the community. It is their home above all else, where lives are lived and memories are not just shared, but are made.

Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 69


WE ROCK THE SPECTRUM AGOURA HILLS ALL-INCLUSIVE FUN FOR EVERYONE

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t one time or another, every mother asks herself how she can make the world a better place for her children. This question ultimately led Dana Aghassi to an all-encompassing career as an owner of “We Rock the Spectrum Kids’ Gyms” in Agoura Hills. While there are a variety of services offering educational resources for children on the autism spectrum and their parents in Los Angeles, there was nothing that had inclusive play-time for children. Aghassi was emotionally moved by the fact that this was the rare place providing a fun and inclusive environment bringing all children of all abilities together.

70 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019

“While my daughters Breanna, 14, and Bailey, 9, are typical children, I wanted to raise them with values, compassion and understanding for all children. They all want to learn and have a great time doing it. All children can benefit from our uniquely designed sensory equipment; we call it “Play with a Purpose.” And it warms my heart knowing I can help so many local families of kids with disabilities by providing a place they can come to and not feel judged while interacting with other families.” About seven years ago, just before Aghassi was ready to return to the workplace, she brought her then 18-month old Bailey to the gym for its summer program to help her

develop her speech and interact with other children. Impressed at the way Bailey came out of her shell, she approached CEO Dina Kimmel about job openings. This led to a part-time position at the summer camp program, which in turn led to a position as gym manager in Tarzana’s We Rock the Spectrum. Once the gym became a franchise, Dana was quickly brought on to be the Marketing and Sales Director at the West Coast Corporate Office. About a year later in August 2015, the opportunity came to purchase the Agoura Hills location. "Dina always knew I wanted a gym of my own, so we made it happen!"


Looking back, Aghassi notes that “Bringing Bailey to the Tarzana We Rock the Spectrum Gym was the best thing I ever did.” It showed me how an inclusive environment can change a child's life." She proudly carries those values of inclusion in how she operates the We Rock the Spectrum Kids’ Gym in Agoura Hills. The gym offers all of the hallmark services that have set it apart from other kids’ gyms, from special programs offered during school holiday periods, to oneof-a-kind birthday party experiences, “Parents’ Night Out” events, afterschool enrichment programs, private play dates, and specialized “We Rock Care” services. Sometimes parents just need a break, and at our gym, parents of special needs children

can feel comfortable because we have everything they need!" “We have a host of staffers and volunteers who come to us to lend assistance at our gym and its goal of aiding children with special needs in growing beyond the expectations of doctors and therapists,” she continues. “That said, it is surprising that a lot of people in the Conejo Valley do not know about us. I want to make it clear that we are here for the entire community and can empower all kids and their parents to have fun, be themselves and not worry about being judged. After all, our motto is, ‘Finally, a place where you never have to say I'm sorry.’”

The Agoura gym is truly a family affair. Breanna and Bailey now serve as volunteers at the gym and stand as a testament to the effectiveness of its inclusive model of creating a world that’s not just about tolerance of differences but full-on acceptance.

WE ROCK THE SPECTRUM AGOURA HILLS

30315 Canwood Street, Agoura Hills (818) 991-5437 werockthespectrumagourahills.com facebook.com/WRTSAgouraHills

Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 71


JOHN MONTGOMERY landscape design

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fter 35 years of designing and building landscape projects, John Montgomery’s expert knowledge of plants, pools, hardscape and all landscape structures has kept him at the top of his game. He develops creative, beautifully designed plans that reflect the client’s personality and lifestyle. He builds the project with his skilled team, ensuring an on-time, on-budget exceptional experience. Along with the trust his company has earned from his clients, John

72 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

Montgomery creates a comfortable and clean project environment. “Although I started out studying architecture, I soon discovered landscape architecture and fell in love with it,” he recalls. Designing and building landscapes since college, working towards his Landscape Architect degree from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, then getting his General Contractor’s license in 1982 and eventually his Pool Contractor’s license, Montgomery is able to

handle every aspect of any project. This makes it easier for his clients as they only need to deal with him and his team. And he will design the project to fit any architectural style-contemporary, old world, cottage, ranch, Mediterranean, etc. Also, with his plant expertise, his plant palette will thrive in the West Valley climate, a climate that has made it one of the most desirable places to live. “The large-scale homes and estates of Hidden Hills and other nearby communities make my work that


much more exciting,” Montgomery says. He spent many years in Santa Barbara and Montecito building large estates. “Creating a fantastic outdoor living environment, a great space for entertaining with an outdoor kitchen, fireplace, pool and amazing lighting for nightlife, is a wonderful profession. I appreciate it every day.” Montgomery connects with his clients in a meaningful way, listening to their outdoor living dream lists, and bringing those dreams to fruition. Presenting a colored plan, drawn to scale, along with 3d renderings, makes it easy for clients to visualize the design concept. “I love all the clients’ excitement when they look at the 3d renderings and are able to understand how amazing their property is going to look,” he explains. Beyond the aesthetics and functionality of a well-designed project, the property value increases considerably. And the homeowners feel compelled to be outside, using their new space, having friends over, really enjoying the art of outdoor living.

JOHN MONTGOMERY

L A N D S C A P E

DESIGN

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WWW.JPM-DESIGN.COM

Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 73


Reaching Higher

ELEVATE DISPENSARY

with

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ith the influx of innovation and creativity surrounding the recreational cannabis industry, consumers now have an array of options in deciding when, where and how they purchase their products. From delivery systems, to dispensaries with modern and high-tech twists, the competition has continued to increase among this ever-growing industry. However, Hidden Hills residents are lucky to have easy access to Elevate Dispensary, an all-encompassing one-stop-shop designed to adhere to any and all of your cannabis needs. 74 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

Located just off of Ventura Blvd. in Woodland Hills, Elevate Dispensary puts a focus on wellness and healing, creating a safe and welcoming space for those looking to explore their relationship with cannabis. From CBD to THC, their highly knowledgeable staff provides education on the many benefits and types of cannabis products to ensure that each individual’s needs are met. Whether you’re looking for physical pain relief or simply seek to improve your mindfulness at the end of a stressful work week, Elevate’s extensive array of hand-picked products has you

covered. From candy edibles, to topical CBD-infused lotions, to the finest organic flower, you need look no further than here at this expansive and organized dispensary. Upon walking into Elevate Dispensary you will be met with serene surroundings that are somewhat reminiscent of a spa, putting your mind in a state of ease and tranquility. The atmosphere at Elevate allows customers to unwind and relax as they explore various products and strains. Having just opened in June of 2019, the fresh and inviting space


is accentuated by sleek black walls and modern decor. With trained professionals eager to assist and answer any questions thrown their way, Elevate Dispensary treats customers with the utmost care as they explore and expand their knowledge and use of cannabis in its many forms. Though visiting the actual dispensary is a treat in and of itself, there are also options for those who wish to avoid making the short trip over to the

Ventura Blvd. location. Whether it’s because you would prefer to keep your cannabis use private, or you’re simply not feeling up to leaving your house for the day, Elevate is once again there to accommodate. By conveniently offering a home delivery service for each and every item on their menu, Elevate ensures that no customers are left behind in their search for safe and reliable cannabis use. Best of all, delivery is accommodated at no extra cost.

Regardless whether you’re a long-time cannabis user or just beginning your exploration with the herb, Elevate Dispensary is sure to take your experience to the next level.

ELEVATE DISPENSARY

20010 Ventura Blvd, Woodland Hills, CA 91364 818.835.9525 ELEVATE-DISPENSARY.COM

Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 75


EASTERN PROMISES

FULFILLED: VIKING RIVER CRUISES’ PASSAGE TO EASTERN EUROPE

A LUXURIOUS, INTIMATE SETTING INSIDE THE SHIP AND OUT SETS THE STAGE FOR AN ATMOSPHERIC JOURNEY THAT FLOWS INTO MEANINGFUL MEMORIES. (PHOTO: VIKING)

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ruising is often regarded as the destination domain of well-to-do people over 65, or a commonsense multigenerational vacation perfectly suited for my picky mother who, although well-traveled, is coming to terms with the fact she now has to go at a slower pace. Viking River Cruises (vikingrivercruises.com)-whose commercials precede her favorite PBS shows--has offered a winning formula for years: Luxuriously-appointed ships, customizable itineraries, uniformly superb food, and an astutebut-warm staff who clearly offer what their passengers want in a “trip of a lifetime journey” even if they’ve been around the world many times over. As one would expect, this cruise line succeeds in attracting intelligent, young-at-heart travelers who move to their own beat but are eager to learn about cultures and make new friends. . . the kind of person I aspire to be in the future.

76 Hidden Hills Magazine | Fall 2019

BY ELYSE GLICKMAN

With its particularly strong emphasis on history and architecture, the “Passage to Eastern Europe” itinerary is perfect for those wanting to dig beyond the well-trodden places they’ve visited, as well as those with Eastern European ancestry. A recent trip, originating in Bucharest aboard the Viking Ullur, Romania was as advertised down to essential details such as intelligently-designed staterooms and excellent plumbing. While the package is thoroughly attuned to older passengers' needs, the youthful energy of Budapest’s “Pest” side and Belgrade can be embraced just as readily should passengers want to be immersed in what their grandkids and kids enjoy. Alongside the older--and very worldly--group of passengers, I met a handful of couples in their 30’s who were mixing gamely with the rest of the population. This particular itinerary appealed to me


A FULL DAY IN VIBRANT BELGRADE, SERBIA IS ONE OF THE ITINERARY’S HIGHLIGHTS. VISITORS HAVE OPPORTUNITIES TO EXPLORE PARKS AROUND ADA CIGANLIJA LAKE ON PATHS LINING THE SAVA RIVER (TOP LEFT), SHOP AND DINE ON KNEZ MIHAILOVA STREET (TOP RIGHT), OR EXPLORE THE CITY’S WEALTH OF ART AND SCIENCE MUSEUMS. (PHOTOS: ELYSE GLICKMAN)

because of its Jewish points of interest that often provoked questions, conversations and shared experiences without being too religious. However, I wondered what would motivate GenX or Millennial couples, siblings or best friends to choose a journey that flows at a slower pace? As the trip ran its course, we ultimately agreed that we placed as much value on the people we struck up conversations with as we did the cool urban shopping areas, fascinating museums and expansive landscapes. A trip like this tends to provide a thoughtful contrast to destinations and itineraries geared towards younger adults and people traveling with young children. Those looking for a more stress-free vacation alternative (i.e., expectant couples and people with particularly demanding work schedules) will find it a most rewarding compromise. It can also provide a solid introduction to this less-traveled region of Europe that will benefit those considering a longer, more detailed trip through any of these countries in the future. Further, it’s easy to

make meaningful connections with fellow passengers sharing common interests and life experiences. In my trading notes with several of the Jewish couples aboard the ship, as well as a few non-Jewish couples, it turned out that we were all so like-minded my new friends feel like they could have been my long-lost aunts and uncles. As some tours and guides will inevitably be more compelling than others, active travelers or those already familiar with the port-of-call can opt to do their own thing at some locations such as Belgrade (though a bit of pre-trip research of certain cities at all-day stops is recommended). On the other hand, conversing with well-traveled passengers during the daily sojourns, meal times and shipboard entertainment makes each discovery richer. Chatting with several Jewish couples exploring their ancestry during visits to Bucharest, Belgrade and Vidin, Bulgaria did that for me. Of course, meeting others, including a young American military couple and those with a Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 77


TOP LEFT: ONE OF MANY CASTLES AND FORTRESSES ON THE ITINERARY THAT ENCHANT AND INSPIRE. (PHOTO: VIKING). TOP RIGHT: THE SKYLINE OF BULGARIAN CITY TIRNOVO. (PHOTO: ELYSE GLICKMAN). BOTTOM RIGHT: OUTDOOR DINING ON THE VIKING ULLUR’S AQUAVIT LOUNGE ALSO DELIVERS A FRONT-ROW VIEW TO SOME OF THE DANUBE’S MOST BEAUTIFUL VISTAS. (VIKING).

THE HIGHLIGHTS OF THIS PARTICULAR TRIP INVOLVED PASSIONATE LAND GUIDES, CHANCE MEETINGS WITH LOCALS AT EVERY STOP, AND CREW MEMBERS WHO WERE ALSO ENGAGING STORYTELLERS. range of interests that informed their choice to choose the Passage to Eastern Europe, were just as fascinating. The highlights of this particular trip involved passionate land guides, chance meetings with locals at every stop, and crew members who were also engaging storytellers. While most of the nightly on-board entertainment included both classical and folk music performances, one night was dedicated to a questionand-answer session with ship program director Maksim who discussed coming of age in Bulgaria at the time of the fall of Communism. While it certainly provided additional context for our two-day stop in Bulgaria, he was just as moved when he found himself being a part of other passengers’ stories. “Our Jewish tours on all Viking cruises (in this region) offered me the opportunity to see Jewish areas in Russia, Ukraine, the Lower Danube, Portugal and France, both with my own eyes and through the eyes of 78 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

our passengers on the tours,” Maksim said. “However, one of the most touching encounters I had was helping an American passenger find and visit the village where his grandmother and ancestors lived during an Odessa - Kiev cruise. He wanted to visit the village outside of Odessa where his grandmother was born.” Maksim’s eyes began to tear up as he explained that this passenger was so determined to find the village that he wanted to walk in his grandmother’s footsteps even though there was only a small chance he would find anyone who knew his relatives. The process was complicated in the beginning, as Maksim’s research led to several villages with the same name. Using a process of elimination, he zeroed in on the one closest to Odessa, and then contacted regional officials to be sure the community still existed. A three-hour trip by taxi was required to get to the general area—and a regional school where a summer camp-like program was in


ONE OF THE MOST TOUCHING ENCOUNTERS I HAD WAS HELPING AN AMERICAN PASSENGER FIND AND VISIT THE VILLAGE WHERE HIS GRANDMOTHER AND ANCESTORS LIVED DURING AN ODESSA - KIEV CRUISE.

session. The passenger nevertheless remained undeterred.

TOP LEFT: BUDAPEST’S POPULAR CENTRAL MARKET HALL ANCHORS THE CITY’S MAJOR SHOPPING STREETS, JEWISH QUARTER, AND SIDE STREETS FILLED WITH ART GALLERIES, BOUTIQUES, AND BARS. (ELYSE GLICKMAN). BOTTOM RIGHT: INSIDE THE VIKING ULLUR’S THE RESTAURANT, GUESTS CAN ENJOY FRESH ADAPTATIONS OF ENDURING RECIPES FROM THE COUNTRIES THE BOAT FLOWS THROUGH. TOP RIGHT: THE DANUBE CRUISE CONCLUDES WITH VIEWS OF THE IMPRESSIVE, GOTHIC-REVIVAL HUNGARIAN PARLIAMENT BUILDING. (VIKING).

“Although there were no more Jews living in the community, the officials got the word out to welcome our passenger,” Maksim continued. “The passenger, meanwhile, did not expect anyone to meet him and his wife. When they arrived, they were shocked to find themselves greeted by much of the community, including the kids, the officials and several seniors eager to share their memories. With aspects of the village’s history disappearing as generations fade, it turned out to be as important a milestone for the village as it was for the couple. While that village’s history may not seem special to some, both sides agreed the lives of the passenger’s grandmother and

mother were preserving.”

worth

Maksim affirms the villages like the one near Odessa are filled with “witnesses to history” and, as a result, emotions are going to emerge not only among passengers but also the guides and locals in a visceral way everywhere . . . from the remains of a synagogue in Vidin, Bulgaria to an afternoon visit with a local Croatian family just outside Osijek, or a small cafe tucked into Budapest’s Jewish Quarter serving traditional Hungarian Jewish pastries. These exchanges often resonate even more than many of the cities’ many moving monuments and sculptures. Other stories follow. A passenger who came back to Kiev and stayed at the hotel before the cruise

Fall 2019  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 79


YOU CAN CARRY THE LESSONS OF THE PAST IN TO YOUR FAMILIES’ AND FRIENDS’ FUTURE, AND YOU CAN TOP LEFT: FASHION FORWARD APPRECIATE HOW FINDS ABOUND AT PALOMA, A COMPLEX OF BOUTIQUES AND FAR YOU HAVE DESIGNER ATELIERS IN BUDAPEST. (ELYSE COME. GLICKMAN). BOTTOM LEFT: ONE OF BUDAPEST’S MOST MOVING, MUSTDO DESTINATIONS IS THE HUNGARIAN JEWISH MUSEUM AND ARCHIVES, WHICH ENCOMPASSES THE GREAT SYNAGOGUE (ELYSE GLICKMAN). TOP RIGHT: THE PARISH CHURCH OF ST PETER AND PAUL THE APOSTLE IN OSIJEK, CROATIA. (VIKING).

began was startled to find that the hotel’s manager of housekeeping was his classmate. Jewish couples from South Florida, Dallas and Los Angeles tell me how they planned their time at various ports-of-call to work their way to former and present Jewish quarters and book Shabbat lunch at the local Chabad in a given town. Other couples from England and Canada forgot people can hear their conversations about their discoveries, with their voices raised with enthusiasm. “It’s not just reconnecting to your roots,” explains Maksim. “You can carry the lessons of the past in to your families’ and friends’ future, and you can appreciate how far you have come. Even when some passengers don’t find their roots or direct relatives, they still marvel about the layers of

80 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

history they find in different places.” This was my case when visiting Vidin, Bulgaria. From the very start of our morning tour, a guide who went by “Benni” actually had me at “Hello” before discussing what made her decide to return to Bulgaria after years of study in Germany and Chicago. I was riveted right through our bus passing the shell of a synagogue poised for restoration on the way back to the ship—and yes, I made the trip back there in the afternoon with the couple from California. “I can tell you that as a kid, there was nothing like reading books about princesses in this environment, and eating fresh homegrown vegetables, homemade


cakes and yogurt. It was freedom, fireflies in evenings, fields of flowers, and playing simple games,” she recalled. “We were normal children who had a great childhood. Then one day my grandfather was listening to Radio Free Europe and my grandma (made sure) the door was locked and the curtains closed. What he heard about Communism made him angry, and I discovered it was far from the heaven-on-earth of equality it promised the people.” Benni, who met us in Vidin, and a male guide who showed us around Veliko Tarnovo Municipality, both provided their individual takes on the back story of how Bulgaria was one of the few countries that would not hand their Jewish citizens over to the Third Reich. King Boris III refused to follow Hitler’s orders to do so even with a five-hundred-year alliance between Germany and Bulgaria that began when Germany thwarted Ottoman invasions. He was murdered for his beliefs. From there, Benni’s passionate conversation extended to how the onset of Communism turned a beautiful, well-functioning country into a huge, austere industrial expanse after most Bulgarian Jews left the country, and today 2,000 remain.

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“When the Communists came to power after World War II and confiscated citizens’ land and property, many Jews—our friends and neighbors— began emigrating to Israel and we lost so much as a country. The Jews had factories that hired many people and built beautiful buildings that were as grand as Budapest and Vienna. Our Jews also were expert craftsmen and reliable doctors. Living under these conditions under Communism sometimes makes me feel there is something Jewish in me and it explains why I personally don’t like dictators.” Benni credits Viking Cruises as well as Israeli tourists returning to explore their family origins for helping bring her country back from the brink. Although Black Sea tourism thrived even in the worst of times, she stresses the beachy area did not represent the real Bulgaria and kept visitors separate from the locals. “Towns became isolated, and my colleagues and I started over from minus zero. And we are happy to work with Viking— everything that led up to today was the culmination of many people’s efforts

to bring Bulgaria back from those dark days,” she concludes. “I am hopeful that we will rebuild my beautiful town. After working on my PhD in Chicago, I was crying like a donkey when I left. When my friends asked why, I knew I would miss Chicago, from Navy Pier to the Magnificent Mile, and Lincoln Avenue, Lincoln Park, The Art Institute, and Christmas in Chicago. My best friend in Chicago urged me to stay, but I realized that everything I loved about Chicago was in place before I came out there. It reminded me that I miss my home and that I could be useful in helping Bulgaria relaunch a new economic sector and a brighter future, especially because it was so wonderful before Communism took hold. While I miss Chicago, I have no regrets about coming home.” Nobody can deny that a spa vacation or visit (including the many excellent ones in Budapest) can make one feel revitalized physically, and a river cruise brings healing to the mind and soul as well. Strike up a conversation and prepare to be amazed.

I AM HOPEFUL THAT WE WILL REBUILD MY BEAUTIFUL TOWN. 82 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019

TOP PHOTO: A NEW STOP NEAR DONJI MILANOVAC, SERBIA INCLUDES A VISIT TO KAPETAN MISIN BREG IN TO VIEW CONTEMPORARY ART, HILLTOP VIEWS OF THE DANUBE AND SAMPLINGS OF ARTISANAL CHEESES AND BAKED GOODS. (GLICKMAN. SECOND FROM TOP: THE IMPOSING IRON GATE WELCOMES CRUISERS TO SERBIA.(GLICKMAN). SECOND FROM BOTTOM: GOLUBAC FORTRESS IS ANOTHER ESSENTIAL SPOT TO VISIT DURING THE ITINERARY’S NEWEST SERBIAN STOP. (VIKING). BOTTOM: ANOTHER IDYLLIC VIEW OF ARBANASI, BULGARIA. (VIKING).


Buy a shelter animal a life-saving seat on the START bus for the holidays and get personally thanked by that lucky dog or cat!

In March 2017, START Rescue (Shelter Transport Animal Rescue Team, a 501c3 charitable organization) launched "The Beast," a 38-foot motorhome that was retrofitted into a state of the art Animal Transport Vehicle for our Transport/Relocation Program. This was done to increase transport population while also providing comfortable and sanitary conditions for our four-legged passengers. The project took over nine months of careful research and construction by an animal transport specialist. Our "dream" vehicle, affectionately named "The Beast," can hold up to 160 at-risk animals in a climate-controlled environment. START’s innovative "Buy A Seat on the Bus" program (at www.STARTescue.org/rescue-bus ) helps fund these life-saving transports. Donors who buy a seat receive a handwritten Thank You card from the rescued pooch or kitty, including the animal's photo and what we know about him or her.

www.STARTrescue.org/donate PO Box 4792 • Valley Village, CA 91617

To date, START has transported over 13,000 animals to safety and loving FURever homes. By buying a seat as a holiday gift, you will be helping us save more lives! The poignant thank you notes are great holiday gifts. Each gift is announced before actual transport so the recipient knows the magic they are about to receive. After actual transport, our lucky animals will sit down and write you or your recipient a personal one-of-a-kind thank you for saving their life. Can you honestly think of a more heartwarming gift? And, would you like to consider something more eternal? We have a limited number of stainless steel plaques that are permanently affixed to each transport crate. You can celebrate a life, remember a beloved pet and have your favorite engraving on it. Each crate plaque comes with a certificate and photo showing the actual engraved plaque and the number of the crate. We can even tell you who was on your crate for transport. These are limited items (less than 50 left). You will get an initial announcement in time for any occasion. The plaques take approximately 3 to 5 weeks. Each plaque is $250. This is a custom order. Please contact alicia@startrescue.org for more information and order forms.

On behalf of our precious innocent cargo, the START Team wishes Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine you and yours HAPPY HOLIDAYS and a GREAT NEW YEAR AHEAD!

83


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86 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020


BUTTERNUT SQUASH & LOBSTER BISQUE

INGREDIENTS:

LOBSTER STOCK:

• 2 whole 1 1/4 lb lobsters, steamed • 1lb of unsalted butter • 1 large butternut squash cut in half and deseeded • 1 quart heavy cream • 3oz brandy • 1 head garlic, cut in half, wrapped in foil and roasted at 350 degrees until garlic cloves are golden brown and soft • 2 ribs celery, cleaned and chopped in 1 inch pieces • 3 large carrots, peeled and sliced in 1/2 inch rounds • 3 sweet onions sliced very thinly (we use a mandolin) - separate 2 onions in one batch and 1 onion in another batch, the single onion can be cut thicker • 4 sprigs of tarragon • 4 sprigs of thyme • 10 sage leaves • 1tbsp tomato paste • Sherry vinegar for seasoning (roughly 2 tbsp) • Salt + pepper for seasoning

While squash is cooling, prepare lobsters by removing claws and tails. The body of the lobster will have small legs underneath it, with 2 fingers inside the body cavity pull the legs away from the head, the body should come clean in half. Reserve claws and tails for meat, do not add to the lobster stock.

This recipe will contain instructions to make a simple lobster stock, if you prefer to save time you can buy lobster stock in specialty stores. Liberally spread butter on butternut squash halves, season with salt and pepper, roast in preheated oven at 350 degrees until golden brown on the top and soft throughout (30mins to 1 hour). Set aside to cool, once cool use a spoon to separate the peel from the flesh and discard peel.

Prepare a Dutch oven or pot with 1/4 lb of butter melted, place lobster heads and leg half of bodies into sizzling butter, crush with a potato masher a bit to release juices and aroma, sauté this lobster body lightly. Add tomato paste, carrots, celery, sliced onions from 1 of the 3 onions and tarragon and thyme. Sauté heads with vegetables until aromatic, then deglaze with brandy, be careful as it may catch fire, once the brandy has reduced to almost dry, cover lobster and vegetables with water. Allow this to simmer for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours, if it begins to reduce too far, add a bit more water. Strain all vegetables and lobster pieces from the stock, you should be left with a light brown liquid that has a slightly red oil on top. This will be the base for your soup. Remove shells from claws and tails and chop into 1/2 inch pieces, reserve chilled.

Serves 6-8

BUTTERNUT AND LOBSTER BISQUE: Melt 1/4 lb of butter into a large pan or Dutch oven. Cook onions until golden brown, add a pinch of salt to help speed the process. When onions become golden brown, add cooked butternut squash pulp to pan and lightly fry in the butter. Add roasted garlic cloves (squeeze it out of the heads, it will be like a paste) and sage. Add lobster stock. Add cream. Cook at a medium simmer for 60 to 90 minutes uncovered until liquid has reduced by roughly half , be sure to stir from the bottom as the squash will settle and burn. Blend in batches until smooth, if the soup is too thick, add water while blending. Be very careful, when you turn on the blender with hot ingredients inside it can cause steam to escape quickly and very hot steam can burn you. We start our blender on very low setting and gradually work up to high. After all soup is blended we adjust seasoning with salt, pepper and a touch of sherry vinegar. *The vinegar makes a very rich soup just a touch lighter, you shouldn't taste any sour notes, just a bit of acid on the back of your throat. To serve, reheat soup in a pot, just before serving add chopped cooked lobster, we do not want the lobster to become overcooked and tough so we add it back just before serving. Ladle into individual bowls and top with your favorite croutons (we make croutons out of small pieces of puff pastry).

SADDLE PEAK LODGE CO-OWNER, HARGUN SETHI AND EXECUTIVE CHEF, ADAM HORTON.

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(818) 222-3888 Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 87


BRAISED BISON SHORT RIBS

WITH SWEET & SOUR PEPPERS, MISO POTATOES & BLISTERED ASPARAGUS Serves 4 | Prep time: 1 Day | Active Cooking Time: 3 hours

INGREDIENTS: BRAISED BISON SHORT RIBS: • 2 lbs bison short ribs, bone in preferred • 1 quart beef stock or beef broth • 1 cup red wine • 1 roma tomato • 1 carrot • 1 onion • 3 ribs celery • 3 tbsp brown sugar • 1 tsp cumin • Salt and pepper SWEET AND SOUR PEPPERS: • 1/2 green bell pepper diced finely (or use spicy peppers if you prefer) • 1/2 red bell pepper diced finely • 1 cup vinegar • 1 cup sugar • 1 cup water • 1tbsp cornstarch in 1 oz tbsp water • Salt BLISTERED ASPARAGUS: • 1 bunch medium asparagus rough ends cut off • 2 tbsp light olive oil • Salt and pepper MISO POTATOES: • 2 yukon potatoes, peeled cut into 1/4s • 1 tbsp white miso • 3oz butter (for an interesting variation we use our smoker and cold smoke the butter for 10 minutes before using) • Salt • cilantro sprigs for garnish

88 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020

BRAISED BISON SHORT RIBS: Using a pressure cooker or Instant Pot on sear, season the short ribs with salt and pepper. Heat pan to very hot and add 1 tbsp of oil or enough to cover the bottom of the pan. Sear short ribs until golden brown on all sides. Deglaze pot with red wine. Add all vegetables and spices. Seal pressure cooker or put instant pot to manual. In a pressure cooker use 15PSI setting and bring to pressure, cook for 1 hour. In an instant pot use manual and cook for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Either method you will allow to naturally come down to pressure. For best results chill the short ribs in the cooking liquid for 1 day, reheat in the liquid to serve

browned. Carefully remove from pan and blot dry on paper towel, season with salt and pepper.

SWEET & SOUR PEPPERS: Bring vinegar, water and sugar to a simmer add salt to taste. Add diced peppers and cook 30 seconds, add cornstarch slurry and cook until it comes back to boil. Take off stove allow to cool to room temperature.

ASSEMBLY: Place 3-4 medium sized spoon fulls of the miso potatoes in a line on the plate. Using the back of the spoon, smooth the miso potatoes to make a nice even bed across the plate. Using tongs place asparagus laying in 1 direction across the potatoes. Carefully place reheated or hot short ribs across the asparagus. Spoon small spoonfuls of the sweet and sour peppers in between short rib bones. Place cilantro sprigs across the top of the meat, or chopped cilantro works well also.

BLISTERED ASPARAGUS: Heat medium size pan on high with oil, until oil begins to shimmer. Carefully put asparagus into pan, do not move asparagus for 3-4 minutes. Flip and cook 2 more minutes. Both sides should be very well blistered and

MISO POTATOES: Place peeled miso potatoes into pressure cooker or instant pot. Add water to 3/4-1in deep. For instant pot, heat on manual for 13 minutes. For pressure cooker bring to 15PSI and cook for 12 minutes. Release pressure valve carefully and allow the pot to quickly come to natural pressure. Open carefully to be careful of steam. Using a ricer or masher mash the potatoes. Slowly incorporate the butter and miso. Adjust seasoning with salt though none may be necessary as miso is salty by nature.


ROASTED BEETS WITH BURRATA, CHERRY MUSTARD & WILD RICE GRANOLA Serves 4 | Prep time: 1 Day | Active Cooking Time: 2 hours INGREDIENTS: • Crispy Wild Rice Granola • 150g chopped pistachios • 100g puffed wild rice (recipe below) • 50g baked/dried kale • 100g butter • 74g maple syrup • 20g saba • 18g pistachio oil • 2 sheets nori SOUR CHERRY MUSTARD: • 220g dried tart cherries • 180ml red wine vinegar • 110g sugar • 30g mustard seeds (toasted) • 1 cinnamon stick • 1 star anise • 125g Dijon Mustard • Puffed Wild Rice • Wild Rice • Oil for deep frying ROASTED BEETS: • 1 Bunch of baby beets (any color) • 2 tbsp olive oil • Salt and pepper

BURRATA CHEESE: • 1 container of fresh burrata cheese PUFFED WILD RICE: Heat 2-3 inches of oil in a deep pot, using a candy or deep fry thermometer to 400 degrees This works best with an oil with a high smoke point, such as grapeseed oil or canola oil. In small batches, using a mesh strainer, add rice to hot oil, scoop out as soon as the rice puffs and floats to the top. Happens very quickly, you need to work fast. Scoop rice out and transfer to a tray lined with paper towels. You will need about 2 cups of dry wild rice. I would work in half cup batches. Will last 1 week in airtight container. CRISPY WILD RICE GRANOLA: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add Pistachios, Kale and Nori to a food processor, pulse until sandy, Roughly ten to fifteen, 3-4 second pulses. Bring Butter, Saba, Maple Syrup and Pistachio Oil to a boil. Allow to cool at room temperature until warm but not hot. Mix pistachio mixture, maple syrup mixture and puffed wild rice in a large bowl, spread evenly over a sheet pan lined with a silpat. Cook in 350 degree oven for 10-15 minutes until lightly browned and dry to the touch. Will feel slightly oily, but not sticky or wet. Mix once with a rubber spatula while cooking. Season lightly with salt while still hot once you remove from oven. Once cooled may be stored in an airtight container for up to a week.

SOUR CHERRY MUSTARD: Bring all ingredients besides Mustard to a boil in a sauce pan. Transfer carefully to a blender, making sure to take all necessary precautions with hot liquid. Allow to cool for 10-15 minutes in the blender.  Make sure to vent blender for steam, and blend for 1-2 minutes on high speed until smooth. Fold in Dijon mustard and mix until no streaks remain. Will last 2-3 months, refrigerated. ROASTED BEETS: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut stems/greens off. Lightly coat beets with olive oil, then season with salt and pepper. Cook 30-45 minutes until fork tender. While hot, use a towel to peel beets by rubbing the skin away from the flesh. Set aside and allow to cool to room temperature, refrigerate overnight. Slice into halves or quarters to serve. Use within 3-4 days for maximum freshness. Preferably within 1 day. ASSEMBLY: In 4 white bowls using a brush, paint sour cherry mustard around the edges of the inside of the bowl, keep rim clean. Cover bottom of bowl with liberal amount of granola - about 1/2 cup. Coat beets in a light coating of cherry mustard. Put 1 tbsp dollops of burrata cheese in bottom of bowl (as many as you would like, i use 3-4). Place beets in between Burrata and granola, using the two for support to stand beets up with root facing upwards. Garnish with herbs, I prefer basil and sorrel.

Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 89


TOTAL CALYPSO THE HEART • • • •

2oz Ron Zacapa Rum 1/2oz Strawberry Puree 1/2oz Lime Juice 1/2oz Vanilla Syrup (1 part sugar, 1 part water, 1 vanilla bean, boil and steep 5 minutes, then strain and cool) • 1 Egg White • 6-8 Mint Leaves Dry shake all ingredients (without ice), add ice, shake again. Strain into coupe cocktail glass and garnish with a mint leaf 90 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019


VENTURA BOULEVARDIER • • • •

1oz Carpano Antica Sweet Vermouth 1oz Sazerac Rye Whiskey 1oz Aperol Stir over ice, strain over large ice cube and garnish with lemon twist

Winter 2019  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 91


GRAPEFRUIT-FUL • 2oz Karma Silver Tequila • .75oz Rosemary Agave (1 part agave nectar, half part water and 3 sprigs of rosemary, boil and steep 5 minutes, strain and cool) • 1oz Fresh Grapefruit Juice • 1/2 oz Lime Juice Shake vigorously, strain into highball glass full of ice, garnish with rosemary sprig lightly torched with a small food blowtorch.

92 Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019


W

hen Bailey Lortscher made the decision to become a dog-mom at the age of 20, she could not foresee the adventure that lay ahead for her and her Lilac French Bulldog, Hudson. From health problems that flipped their world upside down, to a miraculous and unexpected recovery, these two have been through it all. Though their journey has been filled with both ups and downs, this dynamic duo has remained strong while they continue to take over Instagram as @thelilacfrenchie, one puppy-centered post at a time. The bond that Bailey and Hudson have been able to cultivate and share with others is a true testament of “man’s [or in this case, woman's] best friend.” After living in Santa Barbara for a few years and being “petless,” Bailey Lortscher decided it was time to bring a little

addition into her life. “Growing up in Hidden Hills gave me the opportunity to fall in love with animals,” Bailey explains. “I grew up with horses, chickens, dogs -- we even once rescued a squirrel! So, when I was in Santa Barbara, I definitely got a bit lonely.” Upon finding Hudson and returning to Hidden Hills, life for Bailey and her new best friend seemed close to perfect at first. However, about three months into owning Hudson, Bailey received a concerning phone call from the puppy daycare facility that Hudson was staying at. “They essentially called and said something was wrong but they weren’t sure what it was or how it happened,” says Bailey. After picking Hudson up and taking him home, he cried throughout the entire evening, and the situation only got worse from there. Hudson was becoming paralyzed in his back legs, yet it took Bailey multiple vet visits to find a diagnosis.

A GIRL and her FRENCHIE

BY ALLIE LEBOS BAILEY HOLDING HUDSON, AKA "THE LILAC FRENCHIE."

SPANKY’S PET PICS Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 93


“We went to clinics all the way from Santa Barbara, to LA, until finally we found a vet in San Diego who diagnosed him with kyphosis, which is essential a curved spine,” explains Bailey. Unfortunately, kyphosis can be common among French Bulldogs. “We met with a specialist to discuss options and though spinal surgery was going to be our best bet, the surgeons warned me that he probably wouldn’t walk ever again,” recalls Bailey. After high-end surgeons performed the operation and placed cement in his back to straighten it, Hudson laid in a room for three weeks as he recovered. Slowly but surely, however, he began to kick his legs, giving hope to the notion he would in fact walk again. After months of water therapy, laser therapy and acupuncture, Hudson regained his ability to walk, run and freely move about. Bailey had started her blog when she first adopted Hudson, mostly to document their fun adventures and excursions; but Hudson’s health

problems changed the course of her content and ended up shedding light on the issue of kyphosis in French Bulldogs. After documenting his story and recovery, Bailey and Hudson began to gain more of a prominent following. “Once he made his comeback and we went back to just enjoying life together, it sort of turned into a lifestyle blog and I started having brands reach out to me to collaborate,” says Bailey. Having partnered with brands such as Liverpool Jeans, Z Supply Clothing and CaseApp, Bailey’s and Hudson’s online presence has only continued to grow. With more than 20K followers on Instagram, Bailey feels it’s important to know which brands she supports and why. “Being that we now have a decent number of followers, I really want to ensure that I’m 100% behind any brand I partner with. In addition to the clothing brands, I try to focus on dogfriendly places. I love to highlight good food and restaurants on my Instagram but I also take Hudson everywhere with

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GROWING UP IN HIDDEN HILLS GAVE ME THE OPPORTUNITY TO FALL IN LOVE WITH ANIMALS BAILEY LORTSCHER me, so having places that are open to letting dogs in and are dog-friendly is really important,” explains Bailey. Even though Hudson is back on track and feeling good, the impact made through Bailey sharing his story continues to resonate with many of their followers today. “I still have people who reach out to me regarding the kyphosis and back issues,” Bailey says. “Because the condition is so common in Frenchies, I feel it’s important to have resources that you

can reach out to and learn from, and I also love the we’ve been able to use our platform to spread awareness with others.” After a trying time for Hudson and Bailey, this dynamic duo couldn’t be happier than to be settled and living back at home in Hidden Hills. “Hidden Hills is a truly unique community in how open and dog-friendly it is,” explains Bailey, “I love being able to take Hudson on walks and see so many other friendly faces walking their dogs. It’s really a special place and I’m very thankful to be back here and

experience it with Hudson.” As Bailey has learned, pets have the ability to enrich our lives unlike any other, and when we choose to bring them into our lives, it’s a commitment we’re responsible to stick by. The friendship between Hudson and Bailey proves this commitment to be more than worth it. If you would like to keep up with the many adventures of Bailey and her best friend Hudson, follow her on Instagram at @thelilacfrenchie or keep up with her blog at www. agirlandherfrenchie.com.

SPANKY’S PET PICS OUR ANIMAL EDITOR AT LARGE, SPANKY THE DONKEY, LOVES GIVING SHOUTOUTS TO HIS FURRY AND FEATHERED HIDDEN HILLS NEIGHBORS. SO PLEASE SEND YOUR PICS ON OVER TO: LONNA@LONGVALLEYMEDIA.COM

Winter 2019/2020  |  Hidden Hills Magazine 95


5207 Round Meadow Road, Hidden Hills 6 Bed | 9 Bath | $6,730,000

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Absolute Elegance Prominently sited behind the coveted gates of Hidden Hills, this newly built estate is set on over one usable acre of lush landscape and mature trees. Sophisticated grand scale and volume is evident throughout. The main house boasts five bedrooms and eight bathrooms. The impressive great room is accentuated with wood floors, floor to ceiling stone fireplace and wall to wall pocket sliding doors, allowing a quintessential indoor outdoor experience. Herringbone floors highlight the grand living room, while a glass enclosed wine cellar accents the re-

Compass is a licensed real estate broker (01991628) in the State of California and abides by Equal Housing Opportunity laws. All material presented herein is intended for informational purposes only. Information is compiled from sources deemed reliable but is subject to errors, omissions, changes in price, condition, sale, or withdraw without notice. To reach the Compass main office call 310.230.5478

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fined formal dining room. The handsome library adds a dramatic touch with its dark grey millwork and coffered ceilings. A stunning game room with fireplace and wet bar opens to the high tech stadium style home theater. The gourmet dual island kitchen offers the best in form and function featuring Wolf appliances, breakfast counter, breakfast nook and walk in pantry. Expansive entertainers backyard features manicured lawns, colorful gardens, inviting pool and covered patio with fireplace and BBQ station. The detached guest house offers a living room with pitched ceiling, kitchen, bedroom, bath, and private patio to complete this superbly crafted home.

24716 Long Valley Road, Hidden Hills 6 Bed | 9 Bath $10,895,000

Dana Olmes & Jeff Biebuyck 747.888.0508 danaandjeff@compass.com danaandjeffluxuryhomes.com DRE# 00944676 / 01383921


Tomer & Isidora Fridman 310.926.3777 info@thefridmangroup.com

thefridmangroup.com DRE# 01750717 / 01192964


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acquainted with

Dana Olmes & Jeff Biebuyck

Specializing in the 91302 Ranked amongst the top 1% of agents in the county, Dana and Jeff continue to thrive as top producers in the real estate industry. An elite group of peak performing agents showcasing remarkable integrity, steadfast negotiating skills and fresh, effective marketing strategies as a foundation for this teams driving force. The tremendous breadth of Dana and Jeff’s ever growing business generated by past clients and referrals, is a true testament to the teams unwavering and unmatched dedication. A colorful mix of influencers, corporate executives, attorneys, athletes, business managers, celebrities, and renowned industry leaders comprise their expanding clientele base. Unshakable at the top of their individual markets, as well as the collective real estate industry nationwide this team has wildly surpassed expectations and continues to do so.

Dana Olmes & Jeff Biebuyck danaandjeff@compass.com 747.888.0508 DRE# 00944676 | 01383921

Profile for Long Valley Media

Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020  

COZY IN THE COUNTRY WITH NICOLLETTE SHERIDAN | SARA BERGSTEIN DIVES INTO BLK WATER | THE HIDDEN HILLS PONY CLUB | THE BARN AT CIELO FA...

Hidden Hills Magazine | Winter 2019/2020  

COZY IN THE COUNTRY WITH NICOLLETTE SHERIDAN | SARA BERGSTEIN DIVES INTO BLK WATER | THE HIDDEN HILLS PONY CLUB | THE BARN AT CIELO FA...