Staying out late on a Thursday night, especially in the mid-city of Los Angeles is pretty tough for a working guy like me, but when you get an invite from Vans to attend a private event that includes food, alcohol, exclusive access to a new shoe, and did I mention food? Well, then you bet your ass I’ll make an effort to attend. Tintin and I had arrived a little late, and were almost denied access due to the restaurant already reaching max capacity, but we somehow managed to convince the door guy to let us in, since we were the only two people standing outside on the sidewalk of Fairfax. Once inside, we were met with a lively crowd, energized by the soulful funk music that was playing in the background. You instantly get hit with the awesome smell of Italian dishes being cooked up right in front of the counter. Wood-fired pizzas, hand-made pastas, and other delicious items were being handed out by waiters everywhere you looked. There were a few notable celebrities in the house as well, as to which I only recognized Jimmy Kimmel, but Tintin could name all of the others from shows that she currently watches. I’m not sure if they were here for the event, or if they were just here to eat, but you know the food is good if guys like Jimmy Kimmel vouch for it. He created the Feast of San Gennaro! He has a Lawry’s Primerib rolling cart! I digress. So we head out to the back of the restaurant, where they have a nice outdoor venue set up, with a tent, an open bar, shoes on display, and Ray Barbee playing some great instrumental tunes for the crowd! What could be better? I ran into all the Vans friends that I’ve met over the years, and made some new ones as well. We enjoyed bombarding the waiters, sampling everything that rolled out of the kitchen. The chocolate filled donuts, peppermint meringue *thingies*, and chocolate cookies were all a nice follow-up to the pizzas and pastas. All in all it was an amazing night, and although the event was about the shoes, the food stole the spotlight and our hats go off to Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo for their awesome achievement. Their crew looked stoked to have their very own Vans shoe, and everyone wore it with pride. Thanks again Vans for letting us take part in this as well.
tons of event pics after the jump