Grape & Vine Opens at The Jade Hotel
Savor classic French fare and fresh pressed juices at the new speakeasy-style eatery.
April 04, 2013
Market fresh cuisine, healthy juices, retro cocktails and Art Deco design are the unlikely, but seamlessly matched, bedfellows at Grape & Vine, Frederick Lesort’s new artisanal eatery and local hangout. Like The Jade Hotel in which it sits, the restaurant is reminiscent of the good old speakeasies and literary salons of Greenwich Village in years gone by.
Melt into one of the plush, red banquettes for American food with a French twist, courtesy of executive chef Vincent Ricciardelli. The menu sources seasonal ingredients from Union Square Market to offer vegan dishes like grilled tofu with spicy red quinoa and mango, as well as traditional favorites like steak tartare with toast points and pickled vegetables. Bistro plates like a house bacon cheeseburger, Cobb salad with duck confit, croque monsieur, and chicken paillard go great with the restaurant’s fresh pressed juices, packed with everything from kale to cucumber to green melon.
In keeping with the speakeasy theme, Grape & Vine was designed with dark woods, antique glass, and a large fireplace just off the bar, where cocktails, craft beers, and a special late-night menu are served until 2 a.m. The rest of the hotel celebrates the 1920s as well, from its carefully-designed period architecture to its style and overall vibe. A sunken lobby is adorned with Art Deco wall-coverings and a cozy hidden cove full of books, many penned by authors from the neighborhood. 52 W. 13th St., 212-375-1300
Weekend Recommender: April 4-7
Two new art shows, a party at MoMA, and the opening of Bibber & Bell.
April 04, 2013
I Only Know What You Know - Four Eyes by Andrew Kuo
“You Say Tomato”and “The Wall”
April 4, 6 p.m.
See two art openings at once this Thursday evening at Marlborough Chelsea. “You Say Tomato” is a solo show of new acrylic paintings by Andrew Kuo, who’s also known for his music-inspired graphic charts on The New York Times’ Arts Beat blog. Meanwhile, “The Wall” is a group exhibition of works that directly address and play with art gallery architecture, featuring pieces by Sebastian Black, David Brooks, and Ara Dymond, among others. Through May 4. 545 West 25th St., 212-463-8634
Abstract Currents at MoMA
April 7, 8:30 p.m.
Presented by PopRally, this interactive video event features one-minute videos created by the public about abstraction. Videos will be projected during a soirée in the MoMA’s lobby and Marron Atrium, with music provided by DJ Tamaryn. The event is in conjunction with the museum’s new exhibition, “Inventing Abstraction, 1910-1925.” And with beer provided by Brooklyn Brewery, it's sure to be a party. 11 West 53rd St.
Bibber & Bell Opening Party
April 5, 7 p.m.
Who better to open a neighborhood wine and spirits shop than a wine director? Damien Graef, wine director of Aurora Ristorante and Barboncino, proudly opens the hot new Bibber & Bell (which loosely translates to “a drunk and a church”) with a grand opening party. On top of bubbly for everyone, there will be hors d'oeuvres prepared by chef Ignacio Mattos. 418 Union Ave., Brooklyn
Guerlain Pops Up at Bloomingdale's
Upgrade your spring routine with luxe items from the French beauty brand's first US pop-up.
April 03, 2013
French beauty favorite Guerlain launches its premier US pop-up shop at Bloomingdale's—just in time for the ubiquitous spring makeover. Open April 8-May 9, the space is inspired by Parisian pop-ups, and makes Guerlain's signature glamour readily accessible to New York women. Featuring color cosmetics, fragrances, and skincare products, the pop-up is located on the main floor of Bloomingdale's flagship store.
The elegant French brand is the perfect complement to the iconic department store. "The Guerlain customer is a woman who aspires to an understated style and enjoys her femininity. To her, luxury is a necessity," says Linda Maiocco, Guerlain's senior vice president of marketing, PR, and education. "The Bloomingdale's shopper can appreciate Guerlain's brand heritage from where it started to where it is today. We are so thrilled to showcase our collection of bestsellers to the modern woman who craves cutting-edge, yet wearable beauty."
Covetable cosmetics include maxi lash cils d’enfer mascara, the stunning maxi shine lip glosses, and the top-selling terracotta light bronzing powder, as well as the Orchidée Impériale collection. 1000 3rd Ave., 212-705-2000
Q&A: Hakkasan Chef Rory Macdonald
As the acclaimed Chinese resto turns one, we talk to their talented executive pastry chef.
April 03, 2013
|Hakkasan New York's executive pastry chef, Rory Macdonald.|
Hakkasan New York celebrates its first birthday this week (April 3) by debuting a new dessert menu. In honor of the occasion, we chatted with executive pastry chef Rory Macdonald to find out his favorites from the new offerings, the rules of being a pastry chef, and how he got his start.
You've been at Hakkasan since the New York location opened a year ago. It must feel like a pretty exciting milestone!
RORY MACDONALD: Everyone's very happy about it. New York's a very tough city, and there's so much competition.
Can you give us your three favorite desserts on the new menu?
RM: The mint julep ganache is my favorite—it's based on the cocktail mint julep, so we have a mint and almond fondant with a eucalyptus sorbet and a mint chocolate chip ice cream sandwich; it's quite light and kind of cleans the palate. And then we have a Champagne mango and vanilla panna cotta with poached rhubarb and amaretti macaroons. The rhubarb is very tart, the Champagne mango is very sweet, and the panna cotta is very clean. We also have the blood orange chocolate mousse, which is very nice because it's actually a sphere and looks like a chocolate orange [it is named as such on the menu]. The sherbet is filled halfway and then the server pours hot chocolate sauce on top, which melts the sphere so that you can see inside.
So when you're creating a dessert like this, you take Hakkasan's cuisine and needs into consideration, of course, but how does your personal taste come into play?
RM: For me that's always the most important thing. I have to like it, my team has to like it. I don't actually like stuff that is [too] sweet, so I try and focus on being clean and light, and that works with Hakkasan's cuisine.
You've had such an illustrious career in world-class kitchens around the globe. How did you first start specializing in desserts and become a pastry chef?
RM: I did a four-year apprenticeship in a five-star hotel, and it's normally three years, because pastry is a real discipline. You have to be very exact, there are no shortcuts; you can't do half the job. And when you learn that, it just makes you a better chef all around. Everything you do must be the same every time…or the recipe doesn't work.
Sounds almost like a science, or chemistry, as much as it is creative.
RM: It really is. You really need to understand the rules. And once you understand them completely, then you can change them.
Is there a number-one rule for being a pastry chef that you can absolutely never break?
RM: You have to be like, insanely clean. Especially if you're doing chocolate or sugar work—if you're not clean all the time it just gets everywhere. The kitchen should almost look like a [place to perform] surgery. 311 W. 43rd St., 212-776-1818
The Best Bikes for a New York Ride
An expert at Ride Brooklyn shares his best bicycling advice.
April 02, 2013
The Surly Cross-Check bicycle is perfect for city commutes.
Whether you're looking to joyride, commute, or just explore your neighborhood, bicycling is a stylish, efficient, and ecologically-responsible way to tour around town—and it's great exercise, too.
“There are so many different styles and bikes out there, it really comes down to the kind of riding you're going to do,” says Tristan Oleynik, service manager of the Ride Brooklyn bicycle shop, who likes to have conversations with customers to help determine what style and model best suits each person's needs. For example, if most of your rides will be under five miles, he recommends a city cruiser "for a much more relaxed type of ride.” If you’re going on a longer jaunt in the 10-20 mile range, he suggests a sport hybrid model. “Maybe [you] want to go all the way to the beach, or you have friends spread out in different neighborhoods,” he says.
Popular brands this season include Linus, which Oleynik says makes “really great urban city bikes.” Linus bikes are stylish to boot, featuring chic retro designs inspired by French bicycles from the ‘50s and '60s. Our expert reports that another coveted brand is Cannondale. “They do all different kinds of bikes, but the most popular is the Bad Boy,” he says. “For people who are into commuting, what's been really popular is the Surly Cross-Check, a cycler cross bike.”
In fact, bikes have become such important lifestyle accoutrements that even Lorenzo Martone has started a bicycle company, Martone Cycling Co. The fashionable, upscale bikes come in an array of colors for both men and women, and are powered by an innovative duomatic gear system.
For aspiring two-wheel warriors, the right accessories are also essential—and in New York that includes a good helmet. “Finding a helmet you're comfortable with is really important,” Oleynik says. “Also, there is a law in New York that you need to have a front and rear light on your bike.” A bell and a lock complete the details.
Finally, confidence is key. “Really, the most important thing is to be confident and comfortable on your bike, to really find the route that works best for you that has the least amount of congestion between neighborhoods,” Oleynik explains. “There's a lot of feeling out, realizing what works and what never works. There are roads that you never want to ride on, and others that are super-comfortable. Confidence just comes with time.” 50 N. 7th St., Williamsburg, 718-387-2453
Photography Courtesy Surly
Willow Road: Shareable Plates in Chelsea
Highline-area gastropub emphasizes seasonal small plates in a historic space.
April 02, 2013
The interior of Willow Road mixes both historic and modern elements.
Although Chelsea’s Willow Road has a historic past—it’s housed in the former Nabisco Factory, and its name is a nod to what workers called the footbridge between the factory’s two buildings—the gastropub strikes a more modern balance in both its décor and dishes.
New World Design preserved the warmth and beauty of the storied structure—keeping stunning details like exposed bricks and large windows—but carefully mixed them in to complement the 60-seat restaurant's overall contemporary aesthetic. Other highlights include a poured concrete floor, a communal table fashioned from distressed wood, and uneven subway tiling decorating the walls and ceilings.
In keeping with the spot’s casual-chic gastropub motif, rustic, shareable small plates comprise an important part of executive chef Todd Macdonald's menu, which covers everything from brunch to dinner, lunch to late-night. Local ingredients are another key, as evidenced by creative, flavorful offerings like spiced lamb burgers with cilantro and sumac aioli; braised artichokes with fava beans and lemon; and buttermilk fried chicken with jerk spices and orange blossom honey. Brunch features decadent, hearty options like "bites" of duck fat crisps, brioche French toast, a spiced lamb burger, and sides of thick smoked bacon, as well as lighter fare like charred bean salad, kale salad, twenty greens salad, and fresh fruit. A sizable wine and cocktail list also deserves attention.
Willow Road is the brainchild of experienced restaurateurs Will Malnati and Doug Jacob, and prides itself on excellent service from a dream-team staff who have worked in some of Manhattan's best restaurants. 85 10th Ave., Chelsea, 646-484-6566
Paloma Picasso's Olive Leaf Ode
The designer's new Tiffany & Co. collection is inspired by peace and beauty.
April 01, 2013
Olive Leaf drop earrings ($45,000), Paloma Picasso for Tiffany & Co.
Peace, abundance, and olive branch-inspired motifs make up Paloma Picasso's stunning new Olive Leaf jewelry collection for Tiffany & Co. The overall look is delicate, graceful, and fluid, with 18-karat gold and diamond rings, gold and silver cuffs reminiscent of ancient olive wreaths, and a very special bib necklace done in an intricate, openwork pattern of brilliant green tsavorites. Pieces strike a balance between strength and femininity, a combination that Picasso pulls off like few can.
Given that her Morocco home is surrounded by olive groves, Picasso had an abundance of inspiration for the collection. “Paloma means dove in Spanish,” she says. “We are all familiar with the dove carrying an olive branch as a peace offering. The jewelry I’ve created pays tribute both to the messenger’s noble mission, and gardens as a refuge of peace and tranquility.”
The daughter of artist Pablo Picasso and Françoise Gilot, the French-born designer did her first collection for Tiffany in 1980. But prior to that she got her start working as a costume designer and stylist, discovering her passion for jewelry while reworking gem encrusted bikinis into a set of necklaces. Soon, Yves Saint Laurent came knocking and the rest, as they say, is history.
Today, Picasso's jewelry designs can be seen in the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History, Chicago’s Field Museum of Natural History, and perhaps, your jewelry box. 727 Fifth Ave., 800-843-3269
New York Artists Star in 'MADE HERE'
Documentary series on New York performing artists features Philip Seymour Hoffman.
April 01, 2013
Philip Seymour Hoffman appears in MADE HERE, a New York-centric web series on Hulu
Philip Seymour Hoffman, Joey Arias, Cherry Jones, and Lisa Kron are just a few of the New York-based performing artists featured in MADE HERE, an online documentary series and interactive website going into its third season. Subject matter explores the love affair (sometimes blissful, other times rocky) between struggling and successful artists and the city they call home, New York.
Produced by award-winning arts organization HERE, each of the new episodes consist of interviews, performances, and behind-the-scenes footage. "The incredible artists in MADE HERE tell us why they continue to believe in the performing arts and remind us why the live experience still matters," says series producer Tanya Selvaratnam. "They also bring it home why New York, despite the economics of living in it, is still the greatest art city in the world."
Selvaratnam knows of what she speaks. Having worked in the performing arts as a producer and actor for 20 years, she has often thought about leaving. "[But] after producing MADE HERE, I know why I stay. Performing artists throughout the five boroughs, as we show in the series, have created a dynamic and diverse community that has given so much to the economics of this city, and to its cultural landscape. Without the arts, there's no New York."
Directed by celebrated filmmaker Chiara Clemente, season three of MADE HERE will premiere on Hulu on April 8. (Season four is already slated for a September 16 premiere.) New Yorkers can see a screening of the new episode "Staying or Going" followed by a public conversation at HERE headquarters on April 10 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. 145 Sixth Ave; email@example.com
Drink Like Don Draper at Carnegie Club
Watch Mad Men’s season premiere and sip inspired cocktails.
March 29, 2013
The Don Draper
Wondering where you can watch the season six premiere of Mad Men next Sunday? Your search is over: cocktail and cigar lounge The Carnegie Club (156 West 56th St., 212-957-9676) is a swanky lounge where puffing on a cigar and sipping a cocktail are par for the course. As such, the institution that holds the honor of being New York's very first cigar lounge is hosting a viewing party and soirée beginning at 8 p.m. on April 7. Further upping the ante, Hospitality Holdings mixologist Jonathan Pogash has created a cast of specialty cocktails in homage to each of the show’s characters. So make like Joan Holloway and sashay on over in your best 1960s duds (optional, of course). And if you can't, mix up these libations at home.
The Don Draper
1 ounce gin
3/4 ounce sweet vermouth
1 ounce pineapple juice
Shake very well with ice and strain into martini glass. Garnish with an orange peel.
Betty's Bitter Rage
1 1/2 ounces tequila
1/2 ounce Campari
3/4 ounce fresh lime juice
1/4 teaspoon minced ginger
1/2 ounce agave nectar
Shake well with ice and strain into salt-rimmed martini glass. Garnish with an orange slice.
Liquor & Smoke (Inspired by Roger Sterling)
1 1/2 ounces single malt Scotch whisky
1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
3/4 ounce orange juice
1/2 ounce simple syrup
Shake well with ice and strain over ice into rocks glass. Garnish with an orange peel.
What We're Reading
Justin Timberlake’s "Suit & Tie" mistake, ballerina beauty secrets, Bollywood according to Christian Louboutin…
March 29, 2013
Sasha Frere-Jones weighs in on "Suit & Tie" in this week's best links from around the web
In this week's T magazine, famed footwear designer Christian Louboutin pens a funny, passionate, and colorful essay about his love affair with Bollywood, set against the backdrop of the Marrakech film festival. [T The New York Times Style Magazine]
The New Yorker's Sasha Frere-Jones reviews Justin Timberlake's The 20/20 Experience, agreeing with other critics that “Suit & Tie” was a “misstep” as the album’s first single. [The New Yorker]
In today's workplace, chances are that if you're not a freelancer, then someone you love is. Meet Freelancer's Union honcho and visionary Sara Horowitz in this New York Times article by Steven Greenhouse. [The New York Times]
Need inspiration? Lifehacker (one of our favorite blogs) offers up this very doable and intelligent list to help get your creative on. Rule number one: rein it in. [Lifehacker]
The Aesthete’s Vanessa Manko interviews New York City Ballet principal dancer Rebecca Krohn about her beauty secrets. Obviously, the dancer’s diet helps keep her flawless complexion. [The Aesthete]
photography by Dave M. Benett/gettyimages.com