Restaurant News: Michy on the Island, Bova All Ovah, Stupid-Criminal Stories, Banned in 'Bama

• It may be early, but the folks at The Palm Beach Food and Wine Festival aren't letting any arugula grow under their feet. Already scheduled to be on-hand for the Dec. 10 bash is local top toque Michelle Bernstein (at right), whose Michelle Bernstein at The Omphoy resort in Palm Beach is slated to open later this month. Tickets for the festival will cost $50 and go on sale next month. Among the participating restaurants: Café Boulud, Dolce de Palma, Angle at the Ritz-Carlton, and Nick & Johnnie's.

• The Bova brand continues to expand with not one but two new

projects. First, Casa Casuarina, the former Gianni Versace mansion in

South Beach, will in a couple of months become [email protected] Casuarina, a

niteclub and high-end Italian restaurant modeled after Bova Ristorante

in Boca Raton and Bova Prime in Fort Lauderdale. Attorney Scott

Rothstein, a partner in Tony Bova's operation, purchased a portion of

the former Versace property from owner Peter Loftin. The other Bova news

regards Bova Prime, which sometime before year's end is expected to see

the debut of Bova Smoke, a cigar bar and lounge with DJs, live

entertainment and light, bar-type fare.

• Talk about change you can believe in ... Greenacres police report that a man who they saw on video ripping off lottery tickets from a convenience store was later busted for stealing change from a local restaurant. Actually, not just change but the entire cash register. According to the cops, 32-year-old Michael Maurice Mason walked into the Isla del Sol Coqui restaurant and asked for change for a $10 bill. When asked to produce the bill, Mason shouted, "I want change!". Then he grabbed the cash register and took off running down the street. Cops heard a dispatch call, gave chase and arrested him, perhaps informing him that was not the kind of change President Obama was talking about.

• If you look closely at this wine label, you will see the stylized naughty parts of a woman steering what appears to be a flying bicycle. It's from a 1895 French poster for Cycles Gladiator bikes, and is now the label of California-based Cycles Gladiator wines. It is also, according to the state of Alabama, so egregiously pornographic that the winery has been forbidden to sell any wines with that label in the state. Not only is the label banned in 'Bama, but all bottles that were there prior to the banning were picked up by local officials, who presumably took them home, locked the door, pulled down the shades and. . . oh, never mind. Someone named Bob Martin, an attorney for the Alabama Alcoholic Beverage Control Board, was reported to have said the label violated state laws against displaying "a person posed in an immoral or sensuous manner." Immoral or sensuous manner. Truly, the Apocalypse is upon us.

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Bill Citara