Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Kitchen Table of the Future

New York Times R&D lab puts out a video demo of a huge interactive screen - the potential is enormous. Thanks Gizmodo.

Check it out below:

New York Times R&D Lab: The kitchen table of the Future from Nieman Journalism Lab on Vimeo.

Original Gizmodo post HERE.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The New Barney's

NYMag takes us into the world of famed NYC retailer Barney's and profiles the new management team in place to reinvent the store and improve the business.

Check it out HERE.

The New York Times Isn't Dead

So says NYMag in their account of what went into the decision to raise a paywall on the NYTimes website. The article discusses publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr., current and future managing editors Bill Keller and Jill Abramson as well as the general health of the newspaper industry.

Check it out HERE.

Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blanfein - Wisecracker

Check out NYMag's profile of Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein. Brooklyn boy rises to the top of one of the biggest and most controversial investment bank of our time.

Article can be found HERE.

Who is China Machado?

As featured in NYMag's recent fall fashion issue, China Machado (born Noelie Dasouza Machado) was a model in the 50's and 60's discovered by famed photographer Richard Avedon and among the first non-Caucasians to be featured in high profile fashion magazines at the time. I found the article interesting because of her background (her parents are from Portugal and Hong Kong) and because she's a polyglot:

"Growing up in Shanghai’s wealthy French Concession, Machado spoke French in the streets, Portuguese at home, and Chinese to the servants." Cool.

Check out the profile HERE.
More on Avedon HERE.

Spotify Rocks the Music World

Interesting BusinessWeek article on Daniel Ek, creator of Spotify. Huge in Europe (started in Sweden), it finally launched in the U.S. a few months ago.

Check it out HERE.

Profile: Valentino & Giammetti

A few years ago, Vanity Fair contributing editor Matt Tyrnauer directed a film about the designer Valentino Garavani and his partner (in all senses) Giancarlo Giammetti. An inside look at the operations of the esteemed maison "Valentino: the Last Emperor" was a critical success. The writer's interest in this subject was solidified even earlier - case in point a 2004 profile in VF.

Check it out HERE.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Who Doesn't Love a Little Corporate Intrigue?

Check out Fortune's account of the coup within Pfizer. The article addresses whether "CEO Jeff Kindler was pushed out because he was shaking up the dysfunctional pharma giant or becuase he was an ineffective leader." The head of HR had access to the company chopper! Nuts.

Article can be found HERE.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Setting the Bar High in Las Vegas - City Center

Check out this short article from WSJ. Magazine on the newish City Center complex in Las Vegas operated by the MGM Mirage company. The feature mentions CEO Jim Murren and talks of the major architectural stars (Daniel Libeskind, Norman Foster, Cesar Pelli, etc.) involved in the design of the various buildings and how the entire project was built with the environment in mind.

Will it be successful or crater due to poor timing and the awful economy? Who knows; only time will tell. For now, you can marvel at these statement buildings from afar.

Check it out HERE.

If I Ever Had a Hacienda...

...I'd want it to look like this.

WSJ. Magazine takes us on a tour of an amazing hacienda (Spanish-style estate) that belongs to Mitchell Denburg - esteemed American photographer and rug designer who built the property from scratch. He found himself drawn to the unpromising patch of land beneath a dormant volcano in Antigua, Guatemala and envisioned the amazing property.

Check out the article with great photos HERE.

The Story of J.Crew - Profiles of Mickey Drexler and Jenna Lyons

WSJ. Magazine's June 2010 cover story featured Mickey Drexler, CEO of J.Crew. The article profiled the rise of one of the most successful clothing companies in America and detailed his own personal ascension to the top of the company. With previous stints at Gap and Apple, Drexler is credited with turning around J.Crew's fortunes and together with creative director Jenna Lyons making the company into one of the most desired brands.

Coincidentally, NYMag for their September Fashion issue just recently published a profile of Lyons featuring her quirky and no-nonsense style.

Check out the Drexler profile at WSJ. Magazine HERE.
The NYMag profile of Jenna Lyons can be found HERE.

More on Drexler HERE with a link to a 2002 article about him from NYMag HERE.

Gelato in Crazy Flavors

It's been a trend lately in the world of gourmet ice cream to introduce some out-there flavors. Gelato companies all over the city and country are looking to build buzz and attract customers with some crazy ingredients like avocado, olive oil, bacon, beer, etc. WSJ. Magazine profiles Il Laboratorio del Gelato specializing in just that.

Check out the feature HERE.

Thom Browne Interview

WSJ. Magazine interviews designer Thom Brown, known for his short-cropped pants.

Check it out HERE.
More on Browne HERE.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

WSJ. Magazine - Mad Men Costume Czarina

I officially decided that WSJ. Magazine is awesome. As mentioned in an earlier post WSJ. is an upscale luxury magazine published by the Wall Street Journal. Edited by Deborah Needleman (currently married to Jacob Weisberg of the Slate group, whom I just had the pleasure of meeting in person a few weeks ago), the magazine publishes quarterly and focuses on much of what I like to write about here: travel, food, design, etc.

In their June 2010 issue, a few articles caught my eye and I'll be mentioning them in subsequent posts. The first is a feature on Janie Bryant, the current costume designer on the critically-acclaimed AMC show "Mad Men" (also a personal favorite.) As anyone who watches the show (or wasn't born under a rock) knows, Matthew Weiner, the series creator, has been credited with recreating the 1960's down to every last detail - particularly with the set design and costuming.

Janie Bryant is the woman behind the man who makes it all happen. The story discusses her inspiration, personal history and how she rose to the position she now fills so well. Interestingly, it has Bryant talking about Weiner as well as Weiner's take on Bryant.

Check it out HERE.
More info on WSJ. Magazine HERE.

Danny Meyer - Restaurant Emperor

No one embodies enthusiasm and passion for restauranting (I made that up) more than Danny Meyer. Head of the Union Square Hospitality Group and owns/operates some of the best and most high-profile dining experiences in New York City and abroad. Among the growing list is: Eleven Madison Park, Gramery Tavern, Shake Shack, Maialino, Untitled, Blue Smoke, etc.

He is famous for being approachable while maintaining the highest standards and truly believes that gracious hospitality is at the core of what makes him successful. He prides himself of franchising the "HQ" (hospitality quotient) that runs consistently through his dining establishments and has pefected it over the years.

Recently, the NYTimes Magazine did a great profile discussing his family history (his father was a hotelier) and his future (expansions to Dubai, etc.). Check it out HERE.

More info on Danny HERE.

Fitzrovia - New Up and Coming London 'Hood

Travel and Leisure (Jan 2010) takes readers on a tour of one of London's newest up and coming neighborhoods - Fitzrovia. From T&L:

"Just north of Soho, near bustling Oxford Street, sits central London’s hidden neighborhood: Fitzrovia. Home to louche, boho types in the late 19th century (the Pre-Raphaelites and Oscar Wilde lounged in its bars), Fitzrovia’s leafy streets are lined with Edwardian-era apartments, Neoclassical mansions, and onetime warehouses. It hasn’t always been so appealing: 30 years ago when my father, an artist, bought a printing works in a mews to convert into a studio, Fitzrovia had become a grubby, rundown area. Vendors sold cars from the streets, fashion companies used warehouses for wholesale showrooms, and the only landmark was the Transformers-like British Telecom Tower, looming over it all. But in recent years, it has undergone an astonishing, if discreet, revival. Tired of the over-gentrified East End, gallery owners eyed Fitzrovia for its cheap rents and soaring spaces. New restaurants, bars, and hotels soon followed. Madonna even bought a building just north of Oxford Street for Kabbalah’s British headquarters."

Check out the feature HERE.

Nouvelle Haute Cuisine in France

T&L also in their January 2010 issue had a feature on a new wave of French chefs seeking to reinterpret the approach to haute cuisine introducing a modern take to the classic legacy. Notable new Parisian restaurants mentioned included KGB (Kitchen Galerie Bis) and MBC.

Check out the article HERE.

Intimate New Zealand

Known for its vast and beautiful landscapes, sheep shearing and for being the shoot location of the Lord of the Rings movies, New Zealand is definitely on the list of places to visit. Travel and Leisure (January 2010) takes us into the far reaches of this country with an intimate look at the people and their stories.

Check it out HERE.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Don't Buy Shot Glasses as a Souvenir!

So says a fun article in Travel & Leisure's January 2009 issue. When you travel and are looking for a keepsake or memento to remind you of your trip, don't buy stupid things like postcards, snowglobes, shotglasses or keychains. Buy 'unsouvenirs' or random objects that will jog your memory not because they were simply bought there, but because locals actually use them. If you're smart, you can find something that may even provide some utility back home. Onion keeper anyone?

Best places to look for things like that are: supermarkets, pharmacies, hardware stores, cookware purveyors, etc.

Check out the feature HERE.

Turkish Delight

Food &Wine Magazine, in their March 2010 issue, had a great travel article on Istanbul featuring some good-looking Turkish recipes.  It mentioned Chef Mehmet Gürs and how he thinks it best to see Istanbul by water from a boat on the Bosphorus strait. I'd have to agree - definitely looks like the way to go.

Check it out HERE.

Coincidentally, today's NYTimes restaurant review was of Daniel Boulud's "Boulud Sud" a newish spot on the UWS close to Lincoln Center. The menu is decidedly Mediterranean with influences from Sardinia, Greece, Tunisia, Gibraltar, Beirut, and the region in general. One dessert in particular was mentioned (credited to pastry chef Ghaya Oliveira of Tunisia) - grapefruit givré- featuring Turkish delight, confections made of a gel from starch and sugar dating back to the Byzantine Empire.

Below is a video clip of Boulud and Oliveira preparing the dessert.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Profile: Roger Ebert

Most famous for being half of the "Siskel & Ebert" duo of film critics, Roger Ebert has most recently been involved in a Twitter controversy after sending out a distasteful message in the wake of Ryan Dunn's death (MTV's Jackass). This Esquire profile talks of his battle with cancer, his love for Chicago, film and his dear friend Gene Siskel.

Check it out HERE.

These Pancakes Look Amazing

Details Magazine shows us how to make the perfect breakfast foods. Blueberry pancakes, scones and french toast. I'm starving.