We think you will find this relevant to your interests. Food news with a fashion connection. The Chicago Tribune has the story and Nordstrom has the video.
The story being: Chicago food & drink boss, perpetual suit-wearer and Men’s Shop Daily hero Donnie Madia has been honored by the James Beard Foundation as the year’s outstanding restaurateur. It is a major and well-earned earned accolade.
Not that you need to take our word for it, but we recommend his Chi-city establishments: Blackbird, avec, The Violet Hour, The Publican, Big Star, Publican Quality Meats, Nico Osteria and Dove’s Luncheonette.
And the video being: that one time we strolled with Madia while he meditated on style and the power of presentation, qualities which overlap in his professional and personal lives.
The Tribune referred to Madia as “resplendently dressed.”
To commemorate the 141st running of the Kentucky Derby, I asked our restaurants team to show me the way to a great mint julep recipe. They left me in the capable hands of Dan Yeisley, the manager at our newest bar, Habitant. Digging up recipes from way back in the 18th and 19th centuries, he resurrected an old twist for this classic cocktail: gin.
Not to upset the entire state of Tennessee and bourbon lovers everywhere, he explained that the earliest recipes on record call for any variety of liquors–most often Cognac, brandy, gin or whiskey. After seeing that one of them also called for peach-flavored liqueur, he knew he’d found a winning combo.
The Sneaker Project is a curated selection of sneakers handpicked by our buyers, and forgive our immodesty here, but it rules. Twice a year we give it an extra dimension with atmospheric videos shot in various cities. We pick a sneaker enthusiast and make them our tour guide. So far we’ve profiled Seattle, New York and now Los Angeles.
Our L.A. video was made by and stars Dan Regan and his actor friend Spencer Lofranco. Regan is a downtown L.A. dweller and Venice neighborhood local, an artist/photographer/director we admire–someone whose professional title could probably be something nebulous like “creative strategist and digital fathomer,” but that’s obnoxious and he’s not.
In fact, he’s pretty much the man for steering us away from #basicstuff in Venice and recommending a few crucial spots to chill and eat. Check out our Q&A and some behind-the-scenes snapshots below.
You’ve probably heard the modern, headphone-y pop music of Toronto duo Majid Jordan without knowing it through Drake: they wrote and were featured on Drake’s hit “Hold On, We’re Going Home,” and on “Legend,” he shouts them out, saying their album will drop this year on his label OVO.
Jamie Webster handles the entire visual presence of the group (Majid Al Maskati and Jordan Ullman) as creative director, in between his creative director and partner roles at the Common Good production company and design studio and co-owning the bar Dog & Bear. He took us site by site through the insiders’ tour of Toronto that is the music video for “Forever,” which he directed.
“The idea was to provide their audience with a glimpse of Toronto through Majid Jordan’s eyes. Not the CN Tower or cheesy buskers at Yonge-Dundas Square. It’s not a Toronto tourist video. It’s spaces that are cool or have a significance to us. We see the way the city is depicted and it’s often way off the mark.”
Stocks–bivalve boss, shucker supreme–was filmed in Seattle about a mile from the beautiful headquarters of legendary outdoor brand Filson (check out the Filson x Taylor collab here). He took us step by step through shucking the safest and smartest way possible.
Then he blew our minds by blindfolding himself and shucking five different oysters in one minute, correctly identifying them all by feel.
‘Twas the season to indulge, friends, but now ‘tis the season to atone. Throughout the month of January, we’ll be bringing you all sorts of Wellness Realness—information and inspiration you can use to get out of lax mode and into good-for-you mode. Or at least stop eating cookies for lunch and skipping your morning run.
Don’t take our word for it, go ahead and ask Nicki Minaj or President Barack Obama–they’ll tell you DJ Diamond Kuts rules. Philly native Tina Dunham has rocked huge crowds on the Obama campaign trail and helped break Minaj in her early mixtape days, eventually producing original music for the superstar rapper.
More impressive to us, though, are Diamond’s regular radio mixes on hip-hop and R&B station Power 99 FM, each one a furious dispatch with flawless between-song cutting (hence the name). While her mixes come in many modes–hip-hop, reggae, R&B–her dance mixes are arguably her most exciting work and perfect workout soundtracks.
We caught up with Ms. Kuts on the phone and talked about exercise, the art of deejaying and things to eat in Philly which are not cheesesteaks (no disrespect to cheesesteaks).
We’re counting down the crucial pre-Christmas shopping days with a series called Gifted Givers, in which friends old and new share their thoughts on stylishly spirited giving and receiving.
Sean Brock, badass of traditional low-country cuisine of the American South, is currently enlightening the world that Southern food can be healthy as well as indulgent. You might know him from the TV show Mind of a Chef or as chef/partner at the restaurants McCrady’s, Husk, Husk Nashville and Minero–or from his new cookbook, Heritage. Now you will know him from the Gifted Giver series on the Nordstrom blogs.
In case you missed it over on our sister blog, The Thread, our restaurants team helped us out with a load of compliment-worthy recipes and ideas for a full-course holiday menu—from jalapeño-infused cocktails to peppercorn-crusted lamb chops with a Sriracha and fig jam sauce.
Oh, and a chocolate cheesecake that will forever change your dessert game.
In his annually produced Whisky Bible, whisky expert Jim Murray gives this year’s award for the world’s best to a Japanese bottle—the Suntory 2013 Yamazaki Sherry Cask Single Malt. It’s not the first time Murray has raised his glass to a region lesser known for whisky production (watch an interview with Murray in New Zealand), but he raised a few eyebrows by leaving scotch completely out of the top five.
Since the winner is currently sold out everywhere we’ve looked (only 18,000 bottles were produced), we’ll toast Suntory with an easier-to-find Kentucky bourbon—using our recipe for a Moscow mule with a twist.