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Sitting at long tables with bibs on as big pots filled with lobster, potatoes, sausage, artichokes, corn, garlic and shrimp were spilled out in front of us, it was on! Everyone grabbed a lobster and was almost ready to go. What else did we need? A glass of wine, of course! And the wine for the night was the Chamisal Vineyards 2015 Estate Chardonnay, a perfect pairing for lobster and hence the Please The Palate pick of the week.

Each time a new restaurant opens up on Ventura Blvd, between Studio City and Sherman Oaks, I get excited. I love seeing the area I grew up in become a...

This story originally appeared in California Winery Advisor. A trip to wine country is for wine tasting, of course. But in between winery visits, there are restaurant stops, perhaps an afternoon at the spa and shopping. Why not go on safari while you are there are well. Yes, a safari, just like in Africa! Safari West is a 400-acre wildlife preserve located in the heart of wine country in Santa Rosa. Founded in 1993 by Peter and Nancy Lang, Safari West is a privately funded property that focuses on conservation and preservation of endangered wildlife animals. Currently, there are 90 species on property and 900 animals, ranging from giraffes, zebras, and monkeys to hyenas and cheetahs. Except for the international birds, all the animals are originally from Africa.