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Business Beat: 09/15/2017

Business Beat

Salt & Stone takes over Kenwood Restaurant space

group of four people
From left: Jim and Donna Haller, and new Salt & Stone restaurant owners Diane and David LaMonica. Donna is Diane’s sister.

It's official - the empty eatery that was the Kenwood Restaurant is now officially Salt & Stone, a new venture by the former owners of Café Beaujolais in Mendocino, David and Diane LaMonica.

The deed for the property was filed Sept. 8, and the LaMonicas were on site on Sept. 12, working on some of the landscaping with Diane's sister and brother-in-law, Donna and Jim Haller.

The LaMonicas hope to open sometime this fall, with a menu featuring rustic California cuisine. In the meantime, there's some re-landscaping and remodeling to do, some new furniture is coming, and a big vegetable garden needs to be planted.

Arturo Guzman will be the executive chef, with over 30 years experience, including 20 years at Meadowood Resort in Napa Valley. Krista McCracken has been hired as the general manager/sommelier. Her credentials include working as sommelier at the famed Peabody Memphis Hotel, and being the general manager of its four-star restaurant.

B.R. Cohn asking to bring back concerts

B.R. Cohn Winery in Glen Ellen, which was bought by Vintage Wine Estates in 2015, wants to bring back the iconic concert weekend that was held for 28 years under the direction of former winery owner Bruce Cohn, the past manager of the Doobie Brothers.

The last concert was held in 2015, but in the town of Sonoma and not at the winery.

B.R. Cohn Winery is asking the county's Permit and Resource Management Department for a renewal of a use permit that allowed the two-day event at the winery with up to 3,000 people each day. That permit expires at the end of this year. The renewal would last five years if approved.

According to their application, B.R. Cohn plans to partner with LiveNation and BottleRock to bring the concert back next year, scheduled for Sept. 29 and 30, 2018, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day. BottleRock has put on concerts in Napa for a number of years. LiveNation is a live-events company based in Beverly Hills.

Large scale abstracts and gallery reception at Hopscotch

abstract painting
“Volcano” by Jordan Celso.

This month, Hopscotch Gifts & Gallery in Jack London Village is showcasing the work of gallery co-owner Jordan Celso. “JORDAN CELSO Large Scale Abstracts” runs from Sept. 21 to Oct. 9 and includes many large-scale acrylic paintings, along with items the artist makes with his images such as 100 percent silk printed scarves, greeting cards, and metal prints.

“I just have to do it! It is an itch that has to be scratched. I enjoy the time when I am pushing paint around, my thinking shuts off, and I just watch what the paint and my hands create on the canvas,” said Celso. “I like the weight of the paint as it builds. It becomes its own form and the colors and patterns become undiscovered islands that beckon to be explored.”

Celso grew up in San Francisco and loved absorbing the sights, sounds, smells, and vibes of that city. It runs in his blood and shapes the way he looks at the world. His father, also an artist, gave him his first set of brushes and paint when he was a boy. Taking every fine art class in high school, Celso learned color theory and painting techniques. He has also traveled to Europe, especially Italy, on several occasions bringing back with him new visual imprints which influence his paintings.

Celso lives in Laytonville where he is a founding member of the Laytonville Art Angels who help with small beautification projects and art events. He helps promote and organize First Fridays at Albert's, which is a monthly street fair of local artists.

Celso and Kay Young are co-owners of the colorful Hopscotch art gallery and gift shop in Glen Ellen, which they opened in February of 2016. Dedicated to the celebration of beautiful fine art and whacky artisanal gift selections, they are proud that everything they sell in their shop is made in the United States.

There will be a free art reception on Saturday, Sept. 23, from 4 to 8 p.m. in the gallery, with food, drinks, and live guitar music by Steve Serra of Santa Rosa. Hopscotch is located at 14301 Arnold Dr. #2A in Glen Ellen. For more information, call 343-1931.

Help shape the TIPS Roadside menu

man in front of red trolleys
Tips Roadside chef Thaddeus Palmese.

TIPS Roadside is planning its grand opening this winter at the corner of Adobe Canyon Road and Sonoma Highway, at the site of the former Vineyards Inn. Aiming to be a destination for “wine country comfort food,” owners Susie and Andrew Pryfogle and Chef Thaddeus Palmese want your input when they preview their menu ideas this weekend at the TIPS Test Kitchen, a special sit-down dinner in the vineyard. Feedback will be gathered and considered as TIPS develops its menu for opening day. Since it will be a different meal each day, come to one or all three.

Friday, Sept. 15 (with seating at 6 and 7:30 p.m., cost $35): Roasted root vegetable and garlic brulee; seared black cod, yams, Brussels sprouts, house bacon, apple jus; and caramelized banana, vanilla crème, tuille cookie.

Saturday, Sept. 16 (with seating at 6 and 7:30 p.m., cost $35): Prosciutto wrapped shrimp, smoked tomato risotto, herb salad; smoked braised short rib, horseradish, blistered tomatoes, crispy leeks; and bourbon brownie, creme, praline bacon crumble, bittered orange.

Sunday, Sept. 17, Brunch (with seatings at 11 a.m. and 12:30 p.m., cost: $25): Grilled peach, pistachio, burrata and arugula; Eggs Adobe - smoked ham, peppers, tomatillos, potatoes, toast; spiced beignet.

Space is limited to 20 people each seating, so get your tickets now at, search “tips test kitchen.” Non-alcoholic beverages will be provided; please leave your own adult beverages at home. All ages are welcome. If you have any dietary restrictions, you can purchase your ticket but email with your restrictions. Chef Thaddeus will do his best to accommodate your requests.

Creative Alliance After Hours

Calling all Sonoma Valley creatives! Sip a glass of wine, have a nibble, explore collaborations and opportunities, and meet your fellow creatives at Sonoma Valley Creative Alliance After Hours on Tues. Sept. 19, 5:30-7 p.m. at the Sonoma Community Center. The evening's highlight will be an update from Creative Sonoma Executive Director Kristen Madsen. Creative Sonoma is dedicated to advancing and supporting the creative community of Sonoma County. This event is open to all of those who are a part of the Sonoma Valley creative culture. Please RSVP on the Sonoma Chamber website: The Sonoma Community Center is located at 276 E. Napa St.

What's ahead…and why?

Registration is open now for the Sonoma County Economic Development Board's Fall Economic Forecast Breakfast on Friday, Oct. 13, 7-9 a.m. Keynote speaker Dr. Chris Thornberg of Beacon Economics will talk about what's ahead in 2018…and why. An expert in economic forecasting, regional economics, labor markets, economic policy and real estate analysis, Thornberg was one of the earliest and most adamant predictors of the subprime mortgage market crash that began in 2007, and of the global economic recession that followed. Thornberg holds a Ph.D. in Business Economics from The Anderson School at U.C.L.A. and in 2015, was named to California State Treasurer John Chiang's Council of Economic Advisors, the body that advises the Treasurer on emerging strengths and vulnerabilities in the state's economy. The breakfast will be held at the Hyatt Vineyard Creek Hotel, 170 Railroad St. in Santa Rosa. Cost is $90 or $900 for a reserved priority seating table for 8. Register now at

Still waiting for broadband?

Many areas in Sonoma Valley still lack access to affordable, high-speed Internet. Access Sonoma Broadband (supported by the Economic Development Board) is developing the Sonoma County Broadband Strategic Plan because it believes high-speed, affordable, and accessible broadband infrastructure is a critical component to equip communities for the digital economy, especially for communities outside major metropolitan areas. The strategic plan will begin to develop the framework for policies and programs to bridge the digital divide, and support job growth, tax base growth, and quality of life for Sonoma County residents. Project consultant Magellan Advisors hosted a series of broadband educational workshops and stakeholder focus group meetings around the county this month and are still seeking input from local businesses via their online survey:

Business Blurbs

New Generations, a one-man exhibition of new paintings by Kenwood artist Fred R. Parker, continues at the Alley Gallery, 148 East Napa St. in Sonoma, through Sept. 24. New Generations presents the latest versions of several previous paintings Parker has created during the last 30 years living in Sonoma Valley and celebrates the area's renowned visual beauty.

Jeff Kunde and his dog Cooper lead a hike for dogs and their owners on Saturday, Sept. 30, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. on the Kunde Family Winery estate. Cost is $75, a portion of which will be donated to Dogwood Animal Rescue Project and the Sonoma County Humane Society. A wine tasting and wine country lunch is included. Kunde Winery is located at 9825 Sonoma Hwy. Info:

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Community Calendar

Food Bank comes to Sonoma Valley
Rotary Club of Glen Ellen-Kenwood meeting
It’s bingo time
Rotary Club of Glen Ellen-Kenwood meeting
Lifelong Learning line up
Cal Alumni hear about history of Sonoma County Museum
‘What’s in Bloom’ walks with Bill
Fires and traffic, or serene and green?
SIR #53: Reverse mortgages explained
Foster a cat or dog
Vegetation management

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