Week in Review: Napa Valley Film Festival Kicks Off, Panerai Bash

The fourth annual Napa Valley Film Festival, this week’s hautest Bay Area event, kicked off on Nov. 12 with stars from the celebrity and culinary world out and about. Not to be outdone, San Francisco had its fair share of noteworthy events, including the inaugural dinner at the swank Crystal Jade Liang Nan restaurant and an electric Panerai bash. We’ve also got photos from the raucous Top of the Mark bash we told you about last week. Read on for more details as we look back at the week in review:


Photos Courtesy Napa Valley Film Festival

At the Napa Valley Film Festival, which runs through Sunday, two-time Academy Award winner Kevin Costner, accompanied by his lovely wife Christine Baumgartner, stepped out of a Mercedes-Benz and onto the red carpet at the screening of his new racially-charged drama, Black or White, on Nov. 13. The flick is one of 125 independent films and studio sneak preview screenings featured at the festival, the ultimate celebration of new film, food and wine, in the picturesque towns of Napa, Yountville, St. Helena and Calistoga, at the most colorful time of year.

In addition to Costner, Mike Myers, Bill Paxton, Mike Binder, Shep Gordon, Jeremy Jordan, Michelle Monaghan, Matt Letscher, Willie Brown and chefs Michael Chiarello, Ken Frank and Bob Hurley are among the other famous faces that have been spotted at screenings, galas and other ritzy events. On Nov. 14, Access Hollywood’s Billy Bush hosted the Celebrity Tribute program, where Costner, Jordan and Monaghan were honored.

Afterward, the celebs, their friends and festival patrons headed to Domaine Chandon for a glitzy champagne reception, where Estate Director Matt Wood welcomed the 130 stylish visitors before everyone sat down to an exclusive dinner at Ètoile. After a scrumptious meal of Maine lobster bisque, braised short rib so tender that it melted in diners’ mouths and honey olive oil cake, festival co-directors Marc and Brenda Lhormer mingled with guests.

Actress Shailene Woodley celebrated her birthday by receiving Variety’s Indie Impact Award during the the “10 Producers to Watch” brunch, sponsored by Mercedes-Benz and held at the beautiful Culinary Institute of America at Greystone on Nov. 15. Later that evening, the hot ticket, private Vintner Circle dinners took place.

We couldn’t resist sharing our favorite outfit thus far:

MermaidPhoto Credit: Courtesy Napa Valley Film Festival

Crystal Jade Liang Nan

Ken Fulk
Ken Fulk

Photo Credit: Drew Altizer Photography

On Nov. 12, San Francisco’s iconic interior designer Ken Fulk hosted an elite group of 70 at the inaugural dinner of Crystal Jade Liang Nan, the $15.7 million eatery that officially opens at Four Embarcadero Center on Nov. 17. For more on this haute scene, click here.

Shreve & Co and Panerai

 Photos: Drew Altizer Photography

Rafael Alvarez, President of Panerai North America, and Shreve & Co. hosted a chic crowd for cocktails and hors d’oeuvres at Bix Supper Club on Nov. 5. The evening was inspired by the 1940s vintage classics and the legacy of Panerai, whose dazzling collections were on display.


Top of The Mark

More Fulk: Last week we told you about the wild bash he and the InterContinental Mark Hopkins Hotel threw on Nov. 6 but we didn’t have all of the photos. Now we do:


1692-TopoftheMark75-141106Photo Credit: Drew Altizer Photography

In case you didn’t believe us when we wrote there was a camel at the hotel, here’s proof:

Photo Credit: Drew Altizer Photography

Judging by the photos, it appears a good time was had by all.

Photos: Drew Altizer Photography




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