The notion came over lunch at Craft in Century City, filtering down from the top ranks of female corporate power players in Southern California. It makes a lot of sense, too, even though it runs counter to conventional wisdom on Amazon.com Inc.’s search for a second HQ – or perhaps it makes sense because it bucks the tide. Either way, the idea went, don’t buy into all the talk about California cities only getting lip service in the competition because Amazon wouldn’t want both of its HQs on the same coast. Most outfits, this thinking goes, would want a second HQ within a couple of hours by air so top execs won’t have to spend entire days in transit when going one way or the other … Anyone else hear that the NYC-based Commercial Observer owned by Trump-in-law Jared Kushner has an L.A. edition in the works? … Anyone else figure Rupert Murdoch pumps his own gas? That’s just a guess based on the Australian 50-cent piece recently found at a gas station between the 405 and Murdoch’s Moraga Estate vineyard in Bel-Air … The vintages produced on Murdoch’s land under the direction of Scott Rich have won the respect of sommeliers and oenophiles alike, as indicated by the high-and-wide approach on local distribution, overseen by Roxanne Langer, a Napa Valley import who serves as director of sales and marketing. The presence of the Moraga label ranges from its hometown Bel Air Country Club to the Montage in Beverly Hills, Firefly in Studio City, and downtown’s Patina, among other particular purveyors around these parts … Up next for Moraga? Figure on a designation as an American Viticultural Area – which can be boon to marketing. Just consider what the Napa Valley designation – the best-known AVA – has done for wine makers up north. Some might call the chances of Moraga landing an AVA designation a longshot, since such recognition generally goes to places with at least 30 acres under cultivation. Murdoch’s vineyard is only about halfway there, without a lot of options to add land in the tidy Bel-Air enclave it calls home. Here’s a bet, nonetheless, that Murdoch’s will and Carlos Contreras skill as vineyard manager combine to find a way … They were hipsters before the term was born, and they came out in droves to watch the “directors rough cut” of “Tales of the American,” a documentary about the artsy flop house that has been home to Al’s Bar and all sorts of other mischief making enterprises over the years at the junction of Hewitt & Traction in the Arts District. Former L.A. Times writer Pamela Wilson and her husband, Stephan Seemayer, made the piece, and its debut at the Downtown Independent on the 200 block of S. Main brought out some living, breathing history of the American, to be sure … Sullivan Says: There’s a good hour-length documentary somewhere in the 2 hour, 40 minute director’s rough cut the couple showed … Faithful correspondent T.K. Nagano – the original “Mr. Downtown” and no stranger to Al’s Bar back in the day – passes along this notion about another local institution: “The City of L.A. should change the name of Broadway to Broad Way and it wouldn’t cost a dime.”
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