Driver's licensesand air travel
Just read Catharine Hamm's "On the Spot" column about air travel and California driver's licenses ["You Have License to Be Frustrated," Feb. 14]. Very simple answer: Require a federally issued passport for all air travel. No cost to states. Uniformity. Leaves states' rights.
About midway through the article about driver's licenses, Real ID requirements and California, various forms of ID accepted by the Transportation Security Administration were listed.
This form of proof of ID isn't listed — a license to carry a concealed weapon, or CCW for California, at least for Orange County — but it could be a model.
This would appear to meet the approved ID requirements, since the license holder is required to have physically provided documentation; they don't take the applicant's word for proof. It:
— Contains a picture ID.
— Has much security involved (example: issued by Orange County Sheriff's Department).
— Shows a California residency address.
— Involves proof of residency (in this case a California county) by requiring two months' utility bill statements.
— Is issued by a government agency.
And that doesn't even cover the vetting of the applicant him/herself, including Department of Justice background checks and fingerprint ID checks.
Paris wine tip
We enjoyed S. Irene Virbila's article "Raise a Glass to Paris" [Feb. 7]. In the last few years, wine bars have popped up all over Paris, changing the way Parisians and tourists alike experience food and wine. No more unwieldy, leather-bound wine lists to wrestle with. Instead, you'll find casual places serving small plates and featuring interesting wines from small vineyards. Many of the wine bars featured in the article are included in our "Wining & Dining in Paris" book.
We'd like to add one to Virbila's list. Albion is a wine bar/bistro in the 10th arrondissement, not far from Gare du Nord and Gare de l'Est. It's run by English chef Matthew Ong and New Zealander sommelier Hayden Clout. You'll find dark plank floors and walls lined with wine bottles. It has an inventive menu and interesting wine list.
Best Memphis ribs
In Andrew Bender's "Memphis Tells Our Story" [Feb. 7], the description of the Peabody Hotel is excellent, but the locals did you a disservice in not recommending the Rendezvous. They have the best barbecue ribs in the country. Before my retirement, I used to go to Memphis four times a year for business and never missed a dinner there. The ambience is terrific, casual and fun. I have also had them delivered by FedEx.