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The Real Estate Resurgence of Glassell Park and Highland Park

Friday, September 8th, 2017

Real estate in Northeast Los Angeles has been booming for years. We hear about it on television and in the news. Rarely does a news story get published where the term “Gentrification” is used to describe areas such as Eagle Rock, Mt. Washington and Highland Park, regions where home values have spiked. Is it something homebuyers and home sellers need to know?

By definition, “to gentrify” is to improve a house or district so that it conforms to middle-class taste. The middle class, or Bourgeoisie, is attempting to emulate upper-class standards. In the U.K., the gentry refer to people of high social position, specifically the class of people next below the nobility. Therefor the gentrification of an area is a process whereby those of lower socio-economic status are forced out of a region in order to make it more attractive to the people of higher socio-economic standing. Taking deteriorating inner city homes away from working class families to be renovated and sold to the privileged is also known as progress, or gentrification.

That is precisely what is occurring in the once run down neighborhood of Highland Park. This ongoing restorative transformation has helped to eradicate crime and strengthen the local economy. Juice bars and yogurt shops have sprung up in place of derelict Laundromats and liquor stores. Local businesses are now thriving, where the windows were once boarded up and car carcasses rusted.

Nowhere is this more evident than in the Northeast Los Angeles neighborhood of Glassell Park, where police not long ago bulldozed suspected gang homes in a dramatic crackdown on crime. Soon after, investors began investing in fixing up Glassell Park’s hillside view homes and property values began to rise with new shops and restaurants appearing in direct proportion.

At one time, Eco Park stood as the poster child for gentrification in Los Angeles. This forgotten slum went through a complete metamorphosis in the 90′s, turning it into one of the most sought after areas east of downtown. With Echo Park as a model, the restoration movement has continued its march east, rehabilitating other areas, such as Highland Park and Glassell Park, with great potential.

One telltale sign of the up and coming neighborhood is what is known as the Starbucks phenomenon. If this “7-eleven” of coffee houses has chosen to plant its green lady logo on the block, you can bet your bottom dollar that the ‘Hipsters are coming’or more likely, the Hipsters have already arrived. This of course means that property values are climbing. In the historic region of Highland Park, York Boulevard is now bookended by Starbucks. Having a Starbucks on the corner is clear evidence that a moneyed community is on the rise. The values of homes for sale in Highland Park are absolutely exploding.

Another way of measuring affluence is by exploring the high volume of trendy restaurants, bars, and art galleries not to mention the cafes populated by too cool for school patrons everywhere. This enclave has become a hot spot for exotic dining among foodies and the like. Good eats just seem to go along with gentrification. That is one of the advantages. Today you can find French, Italian, Japanese, Vietnamese, and a wide variety of Vegan food in this once neglected district. It has become an amazing multi-cultural mecca. One more example of economic growth is improved public transportation. Business people can commute from paradise to downtown by train in a matter of minutes.

The median price for a house in Highland Park is now approaching seven hundred thousand. In relative terms, this area is still a bargain in Los Angeles’ exorbitant housing market. As the beautification of these older neighborhoods flourishes in NELA, the real estate naturally becomes more desirable and the property values escalate.

Wines From Bordeaux, France

Friday, September 8th, 2017

Wineries all over the world aspire to making wines in a Bordeaux style

What is Bordeaux wine?

Bordeaux (“Bore-doe”) refers to a wine from Bordeaux, France. Over 90% of Bordeaux wines are red wines made with Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec

Bordeaux is one of France’s most important wine-producing regions. The Dutch drained the marshes of the Medoc in the 17th century. The climate is as humid as it was when the land was covered in marshes instead of vineyards, leading to a variety of problems, such as rot and mildew

Red Bordeaux Primary Flavors: Black Currant, Plum, Graphite, Cedar, Violet.

Bordeaux reds are medium to full bodied with bold aromas of black currant and plums. Depending on the region where the Bordeaux wine is from, fruit flavors range from more tart fruit to sweeter ripe fruit.

As with the reds, white Bordeaux wines are usually blends of Sémillion and a smaller proportion of Sauvignon blanc. Other permitted grape varieties are Sauvignon gris, Ugni blanc, Colombard, Merlot blanc, Ondenc and Mauzac.

Here’s what to know about serving this wine:

Best served just slightly below room temperature (around 65 °F / 18 °C).

It’s always a great idea to decant red Bordeaux wines.

Store Bordeaux and all your red wines below 65 °F / 18 °C.

A decent vintage and solid producer (around $25+) will easily age for 15 years.

Pairing Food with Bordeaux Wine

Meat:

Black Pepper Steak, Roast Pork, Filet Mignon, Beef Brisket, Buffalo Burgers, Chicken Liver, Pot Roast, Venison, Duck, Goose, Dark Meat Turkey

Cheese:

Basque Cheeses, Swiss Cheese, White Cheddar, Provolone, Pepper Jack

Herb/Spice:

Black Pepper, White Pepper, Oregano, Rosemary, Mustard Seed, Cumin, Coriander Seed

Vegetable:

Roast Potatoes, Lentils, Mushrooms, Onion, Green Onion, Green Bean Casserole, Chestnut

Climate and geography

The major reason for the success of wine making in the Bordeaux region is an excellent environment for growing vines.

In Bordeaux the concept of terroir plays a role in wine production with the top estates aiming to make terroir driven wines that reflect the place they are from, often from grapes collected from a single vineyard. Remember that the right bank is dominated by Merlot and the left bank is dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon.

Buying Bordeaux

Buying Bordeaux can be an intimidating experience. French wine labels steer clear of grapes and focus on geography.

Bordeaux has ruled the world of wine for three centuries and it will continue to influence consumer trends and the future of wines for years to come.