Mountain Views News, Sierra Madre Edition [Pasadena] Saturday, July 7, 2018

MVNews this week:  Page A:8



Mountain Views-News Saturday, July 7, 2018 

TABLE FOR TWO by Peter Dills


Recently I dined at a very upscale restaurant in Beverly Hills and 
became friendly with the owner. He told me that he flies from 
coast to coast monthly to take care of his restaurants in New 
York City. Being the curious sort, I asked my new friend what 
is the biggest difference between NYC patrons and Angelenos. 
Without hesitation he said that we ”hometown folk” don’t 
hesitate to bring our own wine into restaurants, whereas in 
New York City it is frowned upon, but he has learned to accept 
it as a part of doing business here in Los Angeles. He said that 
his food costs for a steak can run up as much as 40%, but he 
can triple the price of a bottle and more for wine by the glass.

 My friend Robert Simon owner of Bistro 45 describes it this 
way: There are two schools of thought: there are restaurants that 
take a casual look at their wine list, and there are restaurants 
that you can and should trust to have a great $30 bottle (or wine 
by glass) or a $300 bottle of wine. If you trust the restaurant, 
order from their menu. If it’s a special occasion, then bring a 
bottle and buy a bottle.

 For me, I contend that corkage is generally meant as a courtesy for customers looking to savor a 
special bottle. Unfortunately, this isn’t often what customers do. Instead, people will bring bad wine 
or argue over the fee. Here are a few of my tips on this: 1) Call the restaurant about their policy. I’d 
feel more comfortable taking a bottle to a restaurant where I am considered a regular. 2) Bring only 
a bottle that is not on their menu. If it is, ok, bring one, and also buy one of theirs. 3)Although the 
restaurant sommelier is almost a thing of the past, ask the owner/manager if they’d like a taste. 4) If 
they have waived the fee, or if the corkage is reasonable, you must tip as if you bought the wine at the 

 Considering how much I eat out, I don’t bring wines to restaurants that often. Sometimes it’s easier 
to not do all the work. There is, however one place where I wish I could always bring wine: weddings, 
seems I am never happy with the wine selection. 

 Attention Party People: Join me at Paco’s on Sunday July 15th at 6 PM for Paco’s Mid-summer Blues 
Party, a mixer like no other !!! Paco’s is Arcadia favorite place to party this Summer.

 Tune into Dining w/Dills on KLAA AM 830 at 3 PM for my radio show Sunday, and you can follow 
me on twitter @kingofcuisine


From July 14 to 22, the world’s leading experts in space science will gather in Pasadena, 
informally known as the City of Astronomy [], for the 
42nd assembly of the Committee on Space Research, or COSPAR. Caltech is hosting 
the meeting, with the support of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which is managed by 
Caltech for NASA.

“We call Pasadena the City of Astronomy because it’s home to many astronomy 
institutions, such as Caltech and JPL, the Carnegie Observatories and Mount Wilson 
and more,” says Thomas (Tom) Prince [
prince], the Ira S. Bowen Professor of Physics at Caltech and chair of the scientific 
organizing committee for the COSPAR 2018 meeting. “It made sense that Pasadena 
would host the entire international community involved in space science and 

Up to 2,500 participants are expected at the meeting, taking place at the Pasadena 
Convention Center and the Hilton Pasadena. Media interested in attending with 
complimentary registration should contact Laura Gordon by emailing cospar2018@

The meeting will feature talks, roundtable discussions, and exhibits on a wide range of 
space science subjects, including icy worlds in our solar system, such as Jupiter’s moon 
Europa; the search for life beyond Earth; upcoming space telescopes; Earth climate 
science; exoplanets; and more. Prince says that the European Space Agency’s Gaia 
mission, which recently released a three-dimensional map containing more than one 
billion stars in our Milky Way galaxy, will be a hot topic.

“Even though the topic is space science, the atmosphere is very much down to Earth,” 
says Prince. “It’s a place for people to get together and collaborate.”

“COSPAR was created by the United Nations Committee on Peaceful Uses of Outer 
Space, at the dawn of the space age and height of the Cold War, specifically to facilitate 
exchanges between scientists in the U.S. and former USSR,” says Gregg Vane, a 
senior strategist for solar system exploration at JPL and chair of the local organizing 
committee for COSPAR 2018.

A public lecture []—
scheduled for Wednesday, July 18 at 8 p.m. at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium—will 
feature Sara Seager, a planetary scientist and astrophysicist at MIT. A panel discussion 
about searching for life in the solar system will follow, moderated by Bill Nye “The 
Science Guy” and including Bethany Ehlmann, a professor of planetary science 
at Caltech and a JPL research scientist, and Kevin Hand, a planetary scientist and 
astrobiologist at JPL.

At the same time as the COSPAR meeting, Pasadena will host AstroFest 2018—a week-long series of space-themed events and activities for the public. AstroFest 2018 kicks off July 14 at the Pasadena 
Convention Center with exhibits, planetarium shows, and evening stargazing. Activities later in the week include Astronomy on Tap [], an informal 
evening at a local pub, where astronomers and the public discuss everything from black holes to bratwurst. A full list of events is online at

“We all share the same sky and its cosmic treasures, and the occasion of COSPAR provides an opportunity for the City of Astronomy partnership to share those wonders with the public during AstroFest,” says 
Janice Lee, an astronomer at IPAC, Caltech’s science and data center for astronomy, and chair of AstroFest 2018.

COSPAR is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year. It was founded in 1958—the same year the U.S. launched the Explorer 1 [] spacecraft, a research satellite 
built and operated by JPL. You can contact Bob Eklund at:

Explorer I Scientists in 1958 Courtesy NASA Archives

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