Hot Pink

LOS ANGELES — Pink Taco restaurant, Harry Morton's newest baby — there are sibling spots in Scottsdale, Ariz., and Las Vegas — should add some spice to L.A.'s Mexican dining scene when it opens June 28.

Morton dedicated a large portion of the 10,000-square-foot restaurant, perched atop the Westfield Century City Mall, to a raised dining area that features large, communal tables that seat 20 people. The restaurant's hot pink walls will be loaded with low-rider bicycles made downtown and a Mexican chain mural designed to block off the back for private parties. Margaritas are mixed at the bar positioned at the very front of the restaurant. Outside, a statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe keeps watch over a patio dotted with heaters, umbrellas and Christmas lights.

Morton, the third generation of a dining dynasty that produced The Hard Rock Cafe and Morton's Steakhouse, is perhaps best known as the host of the Sunday "Rehab" pool party at The Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.

Pink Taco shares the party's philosophy. "We bring in an atmosphere and a vibe that includes everyone and gives everyone a good time," Morton said. The menu he describes as "Mexican food with attitude," including Pink Tacos ($7.95 for an appetizer) made with spicy pink onions, Seriously Carne Asada ($16.95) and the Chocochile Cookie ($5.95), a dessert featuring chocolate and ancho chile.

The Pink Taco, Westfield Century City Mall, 10250 Santa Monica Boulevard; 310-789-1000, Open Monday-Thursday, 11:30 a.m.-midnight, and Friday-Saturday, 11:30 a.m.-2 a.m. — Brindey Weber

Photographic Memory

ATLANTA — Annie Leibovitz is heading South.

The iconic photographer and visual arbiter of American pop culture is showing some 175 images from her incomparable professional portfolio as well as selections from her own family photographs at the High Museum of Art. The touring exhibition, titled "Annie Leibovitz: A Photographer's Life, 1990-2005," made its debut at the Brooklyn Museum in October and will run at the High through Sept. 9, completing an almost four-month Atlanta stint.A veteran photographer for Rolling Stone, Vanity Fair and Vogue, Leibovitz hits the High with many of the celebrated portraits she shot on assignment, including those of Nelson Mandela, William S. Burroughs, George W. Bush and his cabinet in the White House and the legendary Vanity Fair cover shot of an expecting (and nude) Demi Moore. Just as impressive, although decidedly less publicized, is Leibovitz's coverage of the siege of Sarajevo in the early Nineties and a string of Western American landscapes, all of which appear in the exhibition and companion book of the same title.

Her professional repertoire may anchor the showcase, but it's Leibovitz's personal photographs that lend a rare glimpse into the innovative artist's life. Deeply private and deftly documented events such as the birth of her three daughters and the death of her father circulate an air of intimacy through the exhibition, without seeming indulgent.

Following the Atlanta viewing, the photos head to the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington and the Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco. A tour of four European cities kicks off in 2008.

Adult admission is $15; seniors 65 and older and students with an ID get in for $12; children ages six to 17 pay $10, and High Members and children five and younger are free. Discounts are available for groups of 10 or more.

High Museum of Art, 1280 Peachtree Street NE; 404-733-4444; Open Tuesday and Wednesday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Thursday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., and Sunday, 12-5 p.m. Closed Monday and holidays. — Elizabeth Thurman

Viva Italia

Las Vegas — Sin City is on its way to becoming the Savory City, and the latest Italian addition to the strip is B&B Ristorante, Mario Batali's and partner Joseph Bastianich's newest restaurant venture, located (appropriately enough) at The Venetian.

The dining room is casual with enough elegance to give it a personal touch. Batali's own music selections, from tango to hipster rock, waft among the lush burgundy leather booths accented by Italian marble and dark maple finishes.The food has the same upscale, homey feel. The menu offers lamb brain francobolli with lemon and sage ($19) for the experienced palate and linguine with clams ($26) for those with simpler tastes. Years of experience and countless awards have enabled Batali to pass down his expertise to a protégé, Zach Allen, who is executive chef of B&B Ristorante.

Batali and Bastianich have been a team since opening Babbo Ristorante e Enoteca in New York in 1998. They own and operate five other locations in Manhattan, including a wine shop and a tapas bar, and Pizzeria Mozza in Los Angeles. But Batali and Bastianich aren't finished with Vegas yet. Their second project, Enoteca San Marco, an all-day casual dining restaurant, is set to open in April 2008.

B&B Ristorante, The Venetian, 3355 Las Vegas Boulevard; 702-266-9977. Open daily, 5 p.m.-11 p.m. — Chloe Popescu

Room With a View

CHICAGO — Restaurateur Jerry Kleiner is known for placing vibrantly decorated, buzz-generating boîtes in yet-to-be-fully-discovered neighborhoods. But with George Clooney, Matt Damon and Ellen Barkin already in the house at his newest effort, Room 21, who needs the buzz?

The actors, along with Don Cheadle, Bernie Mac and producer Jerry Weintraub, partied at the South Loop spot during the "Ocean's Thirteen" Chicago premiere June 7. The venue, with its retro feel and old-school American fare of steak, shrimp cocktail, chicken and chops, was an apt location for the premiere's after party, especially given the Wabash Avenue building once housed Al Capone's largest liquor warehouse.

According to Kleiner, Eliot Ness and a team of agents later known as "The Untouchables" busted the warehouse in 1930, mowing down the doors with a 10-ton truck and impounding 200,000 gallons of booze.

History aside, Kleiner attempts to evoke a high-roller Las Vegas vibe with red velvet drapes, chandeliers and red-and-black flocked chairs fitted with Louis Vuitton suitcase handles on the back. Entrees include Steak Diane ($19), a 21-oz. prime rib eye ($44) and glazed jumbo pork chops with fennel puree ($26). Lighter appetites may prefer roasted halibut with corn puree and mushrooms ($26) or beet, Caesar or house salads, each $8.Room 21, 2110 South Wabash Avenue, 312-328-1198. Open Monday-Thursday, 5-10 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 5-11 p.m., and Sunday, 5-10 p.m. — Beth Wilson

Face Look

DALLAS — When photography became the primary means of delivering a likeness, experimental artists won the freedom to render portraits that explored identity.

"The Mirror and the Mask: Portraiture in the Age of Picasso" at the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth, is the first study of 20th-century portraiture as an international phenomenon that reflects the artistic movements and historic events of the period.

Featuring 80 to 100 paintings and a few sculptures by avant-garde artists such as Cézanne, van Gogh, Matisse, Modigliani, Kokoschka, Beckmann, Dubuffet, Bacon and Hockney, the exhibition uses Picasso as its guiding light, mapping changes in his style in relation to broader trends in portraiture. Organized by the Kimbell in partnership with the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum in Madrid, "The Mirror and the Mask" assembled portraits from 75 museums and private collections across Europe and North America.

"The Mirror and the Mask: Portraiture in the Age of Picasso," through Sept. 17, Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth. Open Tuesday-Thursday and Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Friday, noon-8 p.m., and Sunday, noon-5 p.m. Admission, which includes an Acoustiguide audio tour, is $14 for adults, $12 for seniors and students, $10 for children ages six to 11 and free for members and children younger than six. Tickets are half price on Tuesday. — Libby Estell

Angler's Paradise

MIAMI BEACH — For an intimate condo-hotel property, The Angler's Boutique Resort really packs a punch. Its buildings of various stories and architectural styles total 49 suites, plus numerous courtyards, balconies and terraces that weave together to create privacy rarely seen in Miami Beach's boutique hotels. Architect Allan Shulman bridged the past and present by combining two Mediterranean revival structures dating from 1930 — a hotel apartment building and annex by Henry Maloney that had been carved up into studios and one bedrooms — with two new modern elements: a tower of duplexes with a gym, salon and spa, and three poolside villas with rooftop sundecks and outdoor showers."We used every square inch we could, including an unusually wide sidewalk area, which will be turned into an outdoor cafe," said Shulman, who was excited to restore some of the last prewar properties in the Art Deco district. "I learned so much about the DNA of this movement, and there are so few hotels in this style."

Guests can rent or own rooms with amenities like refrigerators, microwaves, wet bars, flat-screen TVs and private outdoor spa tubs. Shulman balances interior designer Wallace Tutt's contemporary scheme of sea grass throw rugs, striped hallway walls and clear glass lamps with historic details.

"Renovation was an enormous undertaking, but the place had lots of character to work with, from arched loggias to stucco and ironwork," he said.

This fall, the complex's restaurant, Maison d'Azur, opens under the ownership of Stephan Fortier and Tove Nord, the husband-and-wife team behind Loft and Pazza Notte in New York. With brasserie cuisine, a DJ booth and a cozy setting, the cafe will operate 21 hours daily, until 3 a.m. Diners also can opt for the pool cabana, where a daybed transforms into a table for 10.

The Angler's Boutique Resort, 660 Washington Avenue; 305-534-9600; Rates are $199 to $1,000 June-October and $290 to $2,000 starting in November. — Rebecca Kleinman

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