Mary Lambert on Her New EP + Her Fave Hangouts in Seattle

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Mary Lambert shot to fame in 2013 as the featured vocalist on Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ “Same Love,” which became something of an anthem for same-sex marriage. It scored her a Grammy nomination, and she even performed the song live with Madonna at the awards.

She’s since been compared to everyone from Adele to James Blake – and has been a tireless voice for LGBT rights. Her new EP, fittingly titled Bold, will be out May 5 – and is a new paradigm of her visceral, alluring and remarkably infections pop sensibility. For instance, first single “Hang Out With You” (co-written with Michelle Chamuel) is an exuberant, charmingly obsessive paean to falling head over heels. “I don’t want to fix my hair / I don’t want to write a song / I just want to hang out with you” she enthusiastically confesses to her new love, an elated feeling we’ve certainly all experienced.

“The EP is proclamation of fearlessness,” she says. “This is a collection of queer pop songs about having lots of feelings, and what it’s like to live in that dynamic range. The impetus for creating and releasing Bold really came from being told that I couldn’t do it. That an artist, specifically a fat, gay, female artist in the pop sphere choosing to be independent wouldn’t be taken seriously. So I guess this is the part where I yell ‘watch me!’ in a bright colored crop top on a mountain of glitter.”

It’s also a family affair – her mom is actually her latest special guest collaborator.

“She let me talk her into using a song she wrote called, ‘Love is Love,’ and the process of producing my mom’s vocals and arranging her song was very moving and emotional for us both.”

She’s also a Seattle girl, so in true BlackBook fashion, we asked her what her city (and state) means to her, and what are her fave places to hang out when she’s home.

 

On Being Inspired by Seattle/Washington

“There isn’t another place like Seattle.” she insists. “There’s just not. There is nothing quite like the gift that the PNW brings to someone who is willing to smile through eight months of cloud cover in order to witness a well-deserved sunlight parade in July. I recorded half of the EP here in Sequim, Washington (one ferry trip and three hours of driving away from Seattle) and I am planning on making the next record there as well. I made my very first recordings six years ago in this stellar studio owned and operated by Jeremy Cays on the peninsula of Washington state, and have always wanted to return and make more music there. I’m so glad I did, because the songs came out fantastic, and I feel like I’ve grown as a producer and artist in the process. “
“My best friend, Tim Mendonsa, who plays guitar and bass on the track “Do Anything,” drove down with me from Sequim to Portland for a radio gig, and I don’t know how to adequately articulate how surreal and beautiful the drive is from the Washington peninsula to Portland on the scenic 101. But if you can imagine being in one of those quintessential car commercials, and then superimpose your best friend in the passenger’s seat and then add a Death Cab for Cutie soundtrack underneath deep laughter and great talks – that’s basically where I was at when I was forming Bold. No labels, no managers, no A&R, no producers, just totally, completely free.”

Her Favorite Hangouts in Seattle/Washington

Sunny Farms (Lunch)

Sunny Farms is located in Sequim, about three hours Northwest of Seattle. I had to include it on my list, not only because it’s two minutes from the studio, and I’ve spent so much time there, but it’s so good! They have a little deli in the back, amazing produce in the front, and if you’re into alternative remedies, their health/wellness section is off the hook. If you’re ever in the peninsula of Washington State, you gotta go to Sunny Farms.

Tilth (Brunch)

I can never get enough of Tilth. It’s located in Wallingford, which is a neat neighborhood to walk around in, not to mention the restaurant itself is a converted house. Maybe that’s why it feels so cozy! Chef Maria Hines is in a league of her own, and has really cultivated something special. All ingredients are either certified organic or wild, and you can taste that in the nourishing quality of the food. Go for brunch, take a walk around the lake, then come back for dinner.

 

Two Big Blondes (Shop)

If you are a plus size babe like me, you know how discouraging it is to go shopping. It’s not just that stores might have run out of my size, it’s that they refuse to even carry my size. If I walk by a store, I must begin by dissecting the store name: if there are any hidden implications of “we MAY have your size here!” But Two Big Blondes is a plus babe’s paradise and I am grateful they exist.

Lola (Dinner)

I fell in love with Lola, this Greek inspired restaurant from Tom Douglas, when I was bartending and living in Belltown. I’ve never had a bad dining experience here –  and I feel like that is actually really a difficult thing to achieve in the restaurant industry: consistency. This food is comforting and delicious and fun, and I love that it’s open for all meals. Like, if you’ve got plans in two hours, just hop over to Lola and grab a kebab. Now you’ve got a place to sit. And a kebab.

The Upstairs (Drinks)

The Upstairs is one classy hell of a joint. If I hadn’t been drunk yelling John Denver at the top of my lungs when I lived around town, I would have said that this place was a little serious. But I know better now – it’s all shenanigans! I may be a cocktail snob, but I also like it when a drink is called “The Dirty Shirley”. What? A shirley temple with vodka? I’ll take ten.

Bathtub Gin & Co (After Drinks, Drinks)

If you’ve ended your night at Bathtub Gin, you did Seattle right, in my book. Good luck finding the door, though, as the entrance is in an alley and tricky to locate if you have never been. I would liken the decor and vibe to an unpretentious speakeasy, and the bartenders are ridiculously skilled, without being pretentious. I actually filmed part of the “She Keeps Me Warm” music video at Bathtub Gin; the owners Jessica and Marcus are incredibly kind, creative, and super hard-working. Love this place.

Dominique Ansel on What Could be His Next Cronut®

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Photo by Vincent Ma

At the by now legendary Dominique Ansel Bakery in Soho the madeleines, mini shell-shaped cakes, aren’t baked until they’re ordered, he explains, “so you can enjoy them just out of the oven.” Which pretty much sums up his obsession with providing the best pastries in the city.

Hard to believe it’s been four years but in the new celebrity pastry chef’s words, “when we first launched the Cronut®, it was just another new item. Our very first flavor was Rose Vanilla, and I decided from then on, we’d develop one flavor each month. For us, it’s not about cutting and pasting, but really pushing to develop something new.”

After launching “almost 80 different flavors since the start, never repeating,” you would think it would have been enough. Yet not only does the menu change every 6-8 weeks, but with a seemingly never-ending supply of glorious flavor creations – like peppermint cherry and this month’s blood orange almond – the still adored Cronut® is apparently never going away (It’s now available in Tokyo, London and soon to be Los Angeles.)

But what we really wanted to know from Ansel was…what will be his next Cronut®?

Photo by Thomas Schauer

I  DKA or Dominique’s Kouign Amman, which he describes as “almost like a caramelized croissant, with tender and flaky layers on the inside and a crunchy caramelized crust on the outside. I have one every morning for breakfast.”

 

II  This summer get ready for a seasonal soft serve window, with flavors like burrata and balsamic caramel, micro basil and confit strawberries.

 

III  DKA Ice cream sandwich takes that caramelized croissant, slices it in half and adds a perfect scoop of salted caramel, chocolate or vanilla ice cream. Other flavors available.

 

IV  The Matcha Latte with a sakura marshmallow (cherry blossom) that flowers in the hot beverage. Available all year long.

 

V  Frozen S’mores are the camping treat you can eat all year long. A cube of vanilla ice cream wrapped in a chocolate cookie, covered in marshmallow and bruleed to order. Served skewered on an applewood smoked willow branch, you won’t miss the great outdoors one bit.

 

VI  The Chocolate Chip Cookie Shot, already almost as well known as his most famous creation, is a chocolate chip cookie filled with cold milk – amazing! But plan your trip – these comforting treats are only served after 3 PM.

 

Photo by Thomas Schauer

Spring Getaway: Art, Food + Flamenco in Madrid

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A massive sign on Madrid’s City Hall read “Refugees Welcome.” A cynic could take it as being a bit glib; but in truth, the statement was genuinely characteristic of Spain. It was particularly poignant, as our time there coincided with the onset of Trump’s divisive attempts at instituting a travel ban.

We were actually there to check out the impossibly cool new Only You Atocha hotel. And the visit just happened to be timed with their pop-up promotion with NYC’s Katz’s Delicatessen – incidentally, a proud, 128-year-old symbol of 19th Century Jewish immigration to New York’s Lower East Side. This sort of internationalism was very much a part of the allure of the hotel.

The brand itself had launched in 2013 with a very different sort of property – the Only You Boutique hotel in the trendy Chueca district. There, an aristocratic 19th mansion was converted by star designer Lázaro Rosa-Violán into a surreal but drop-dead stunning maze of differently themed public areas and plush guest rooms. He was enlisted again for the Atocha, this time giving a distinctly Spanish context to the lobby-as-hip-playground concept familiar to guests of hotels like The Ace.

And indeed, everywhere you might turn, there was something to grab your attention. To the right of the entrance, The Bakery by Mama Framboise, which serves decadent Tartaletas MF, a dozen flavors of macarons (goat-cheese-figs-pralines!), and Iberian ham toast all day. To the left was the Latin-Asian Trotamundos restaurant, with its buzzy corner cocktail bar. And just beyond is a dramatic atrium where nouveau jazz concerts take place regularly.

 

 

But probably our favorite part of the day was lingering over a lazy breakfast and the spectacular views at the 7th floor YOUniverse – where in the evenings DJs soundtrack the Panoramic Drinks Sessions.

In those rare moments when we actually did not have something to do, upstairs the rooms packed a great deal of charm and style considering the very approachable rates: smartly patterned bedspreads, exposed brick walls, white tiled bathrooms. For a special splurge, consider booking  the magnificent Terrace Suite.

Madrid itself comes especially to life as winter passes into spring, with its scores of pavement cafes, its teeming plazas for people watching and its streets that buzz late into the night. The food is divine, the nightlife is some of the best on The Continent, and it grand boulevards and its grandiloquent baroque architectural icons make it a city that glitters in the springtime sunshine.

 

The PradoThe Reina Sofia

The thing about classical art in Spain…it’s just different. It’s a country that still has a king, after all. And so a great deal of la historia de España is still told in a place like The Prado. It’s a very Spanish museum, and even if you’re a contemporary art geek, you’ll find yourself drawn in to the narrative as told through the dramatic works of Velazquez, Goya and El Greco. The astonishing collection also includes Rubens, Titian and Hieronymous Bosch’s proto-surrealist masterpiece The Garden of Earthly Delights.
The Reina Sofia, just a short stroll from the hotel, is Spain’s most important museum of 20th Century art, with works by Miró, Juan Gris, Pablo Serrano, and, of course, Picasso. The latter’s war horror masterpiece Guernica is here – and an exhibition (Pity and Terror) dedicated to it, runs through September 4. The museum also holds works by Damien Hirst, Cindy Sherman, Man Ray, Julian Schnabel and Richard Serra.

 

Prado Museum 2017

 

Art Gallery Tour

Madrid’s contemporary art scene has genuinely started to garner international attention, with its annual ARCO fair having become one of Europe’s most important. This is your best bet for getting to know the inside story, with tours of specific districts like the hip Letras and posh Salamanca. They will also curate private tours to suit your taste. You can add a wine drinking element, should you wish to pontificate on what you’ve seen over a glass or two of Rioja.

Barrio de Las Letras

Also a short stroll from the hotel, Las Letras is just that sort of neighborhood that defines Madrid: an atmospheric place where charming little bars and cool indie boutiques reign, and there’s not a chain outlet in sight. The outdoor cafes on Plaza de Santa Ana and the narrow streets around it are great for lingering and people watching.

 

calle-huertas-barrio-de-las-letras

 

Palacio de Cibeles Restaurant Terrace

Atop the spectacular municipal building on the Plaza de Cibeles is a hidden away 6th floor restaurant and terrace. There’s a full gourmand’s menu – but come for cocktails, views and to soak up the vivid afternoon Madrid sunshine.

YOUnique Restaurant at Only You Boutique Hotel

Just being in this gorgeous hotel is an indescribable aesthetic pleasure. Its signature restaurant is a particular delight for a long, lazy lunch (Is there any other kind in Madrid?), with octopus salad, jamon coquetas, and lamb terrine with couscous all beautifully presented. Ask for a table in the verdant, art-adorned garden. The YOUnique Lounge is a stunning setting for evening cocktails.

 

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1862 Dry Bar

Spain’s is a wine-beer-sherry drinking culture. The cocktail thing, mercifully, did not sweep into its major cities and strap all of its bartenders into old-timey suspenders. 1862, for instance, is distinctly Spanish bar, not some Brooklyn imitation. A crowd of urbane Madrilenos come to sip updated takes on the classics (Gimlet, Sazerac, Manhattan) by drinks wizard Alberto Martinez. Spread over two floors, it’s one of the city’s buzziest scenes.

Corral de la Morería

Flamenco is way hotter than you might actually think – and five decades after opening, Corral de la Moreria is still one of the hottest tickets in Madrid. In a classical but sensual setting, with Arabic touches, watch some of Spain’s top names in the genre heat up the stage (and the audience) with their visceral, passionate performances. It’s actually quite an intense, even somewhat aphrodisiac experience.

 

Flamenco Madrid

Simon Doom Premieres MGMT-Produced ‘Dream of the Machines’

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You may not know the name Simon Doom yet, but after listening to his forthcoming album Babyman (aptly titled  in Doom’s post-baby new life as a father) you’ll be fawning all over the alt pop singer-songwriter, whose new record is co-produced by titans of the industry: MGMT.
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After a career of group projects like Kuroma and Amazing Baby and writing songs for scores of other musicians, Doom is taking matters into his own hands and striking out as a true solo artist – and he’s premiering his latest single, “Dream of the Machines,” right here on BlackBook.
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Take a listen, and read our exclusive Q&A below.
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You’ve collaborated with some of the coolest bands in the industry – Kuroma, MGMT. How does it feel to be backing a project as an independent musician?

Liberating! I have spent the majority of my life writing songs for other people to sing, questioning my musical choices, altering lyrics to match the vibe of the vocalist, and generally writing in broader, less specific emotional landscapes. I found writing for myself a lot easier and a lot quicker than I expected it to be because I didn’t have to run anything by anyone. No compromise! I wrote the entire album in just over a month!

What inspired this song? What was the writing process like?

 “Dream of the Machines” started as a Voice Memo that I don’t remember recording. Just repeating the phrase, “I don’t want to dream… dream of the machines.” It ended up becoming a futuristic love song. A promise to still feel human emotions in an era of machines. Sonically, it could work as a Christmas song, but there are no references to Christmas in the lyrics so that might be a problem.

Can we expect the single to be part of a larger forthcoming project?

 I wrote the entire album in a flurry of panic directly after the birth of my child. The doomsday clock had been punched, and if I didn’t do it now, I never would. I played some demos for Andrew and Ben (of MGMT), and they both, independently, expressed interest in helping me record it. I suggested that they join forces and co-produce it – which (I believe) is the first time they worked together on someone else’s record. We recorded the whole thing in Brooklyn’s Axis Mundi Studios in about 2.5 weeks. Everything came together so quickly and felt great. Mixed it with my buddy Ayad Al Adhamy at his spot, Diamond City Studios, in Chinatown.

Why You Need to See the Art at NYC’s New Street Taco Restaurant

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Far too many hotels and restaurants are, these days, slapping up a bunch of art on the walls, with no particular reason or aesthetic ideology behind it. But Gramercy’s punky new Street Taco had a plan – to make the art an essential part of the experience. And so artists Simon Robin and Nicole Salgar, as well as tattoo virtuoso Mike Rubendall, were engaged for the task – resulting in a holistic melding of food, drink and space.

Of course, this is a place where even the taco menu plays it a bit rebellious. Some of our faves? Blackened portobello, lamb barbacoa, ceviche…and lengua, which actually means “beef tongue.” But they also make a wicked guacamole and a killer margarita. It’s a genuinely iconoclastic update of the classic taqueria.

In between bites and sips, we chatted with the artists themselves about how they came to create the works that now grace Street Taco’s strikingly original walls.

 

ST House Margarita

 

Mike Rubendall, Tattoo Artist, Kings Avenue Tattoo

I was motivated to work with the Street Taco team because I had a clear understanding of the direction they were heading in – which gave me the right inspiration to transform their vision into a work of art. The have creative sensibilities that separate them from the rest, and they aren’t afraid to think outside the box, take risks and push boundaries in order to create a new and exciting dining experience.
With that in mind, I was able to lay a strong foundation against my design and feel that my final creation embodied these traits and fit the nontraditional, edgy theme of the restaurant. I mixed together a few different styles and cultures and created a one-of-a-kind design that I feel really enhanced the space. I topped off the piece with an Aztec inspired border to coincide with the overall theme of Street Taco.
As a tattoo artist, this project gave me the opportunity to highlight how prevalent tattooing is in street culture, while showcasing how it can be considered a form of art. Having my creation be a focal point behind the bar is very exciting to me, and I’ll be encouraging my friends (and clients) to visit the space for years to come.

 

Rubendall_78A7777

 

Nicole Salgar, Artist/Muralist

Xochiquetzal is the name of the piece I created for Street Taco and I’m obsessed with her location within the space. When you’re inside, you kind of have to seek her out; but from the street, she’s one of the first things you see, drawing people in to see what the place is all about.
I chose to paint this particular goddess because she is, by connotation, representative of human desire, pleasure and excess. Street Taco has a philosophy of indulgence and acceptance/freedom in the atmosphere of the restaurant and it just felt like an appropriate fit. Although there is a darker theme to the decor of the space, it is all done in a pleasure-seeking spirit.
With that being said, Xochiquetzal was also heavily associated with the concept of female sexual power. This is a subject which is more relevant now than ever, and her spirit belongs in the space, and in the city for all to acknowledge.

 

Nicole Salgar 2

 

Simon Robinson, Artist

This was an incredibly exciting project for me. Street Taco is authentic – it’s not pretentious or trying to be something that it’s not. When thinking about what I could bring to the overall taqueria experience, and best compliment true Mexican street food, I decided to create several meaningful and distinct pieces showcasing my interpretation of ‘street art.’
The first, and possibly my favorite, piece is a full, floor-to-ceiling representation of a #BadHombre. He’s edgy and cool, and his tattoos and rings show that he’s spent some actual time on the ‘streets’. He’s positioned across from the restroom entrances, giving guests a moment of pause and reflection before heading back to their tacos and margs.
One of my favorite seats in the house – a comfy corner booth near the entrance of the taqueria – showcases a girl with a beautiful skull face, gripping roses and seemingly lusting after something out of sight. It has a very ‘Day of the Dead’ vibe, felt by the elusiveness of the beautiful lover passing into the after love.
There’s also a very symbolic skull showcasing the relationship between love (symbolized by the rose) and the sinister /forbidden (represented by the skull itself).

 

Robinson_78A7845

A Loupe Guide to Artistic Atlanta Featuring Nicole Kutz

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If you were looking to the future of how we will ultimately come to interact with art in this digital century, the exhilarating new app Loupe would be a great place to start.

Loupe allows essentially anyone to live with a thoughtfully curated “virtual gallery” (streaming on your phone, on your laptop, on your television screen…), this peeling away a significant layer of distance between the public and the sometimes “elite” world of art.

It has won celebrity fans – like Ronnie Vannucci of The Killers – but also attracted top artistic talent, including Atlanta based painter Nicole Kutz. In the second entry of a BlackBook-Loupe collaboration series, she gives us a guide to the city she calls home, revealing where the local creative community can most likely be found on any given day or night.

  • Gobbledigook by Nicole Kutz
  • Stillwater by Nicole Kutz
  • She Once Fell Through the Street by Nicole Kutz
  • Maybe We Will Come Out by Nicole Kutz

“I think the Atlanta art scene is on the cusp of expanding and becoming more permeating,” she says. “You can feel that energy and excitement throughout the city and it feeds any conversation I have with artists, which really brings a sense of community. It’s inspiring to see what comes out of this drive and also inspiring to feel that your work has a lasting impact on the city’s own culture.”

Here is her guide to artistic Atlanta.

 

Hathaway Gallery

Beautiful new gallery in West Midtown that is best experienced during the day for all the natural light that streams through the windows. Their shows effortlessly pair established artists’ work with a consistent hint of the unexpected. Every opening makes for great people watching.

The Atlanta Contemporary Art Center

Another great spot for a dose of art on white walls, The Atlanta Contemporary is always an inspiration. Their annual Art Party and Open Studios are a blast, with great food and even better art. The space for me is core to the growing scene.

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The Earl

Aisle 5

Definitely a difficult choice between these two spots. The Earl has a bit of a leg up with its killer black bean burger, but Aisle 5 has a special place in my heart. The Earl is an East Atlanta Village staple that draws top notch music onto it’s small, underground stage. Aisle 5 is newer to the scene, but brings in a great crowd, great vibes and put on some of my favorite shows I saw in 2016.

Ria’s Bluebird Café

An Atlanta icon and by far the best pancakes in the city. The entire interior could be straight out of “Stranger Things,” and love looking at Oakland Cemetery while sipping coffee and also looking at R.Land’s quirky, but quintessentially Atlanta, paintings.

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Doctor Bombay’s Underwater Tea Party

Best scones and blueberry green tea in Atlanta. (What more can you ask for?!) Maybe it’s the umbrellas from the ceiling or children’s textbook wallpaper in the bathroom, but this spot has always been a gem in Candler Park. Plus, they do a legitimate high tea.

Octane Coffee 

Although I can’t live without coffee, and Octane is my favorite in the city, the Woodruff Arts Center location reigns supreme. Slightly smaller than their other locations, but amazing architectural views of the High Museum and Midtown Atlanta.

Octane_CapPour-5

Dish Dive

A little hidden off the train tracks with phenomenal tasting (and priced) food. The entire experience is like going to your friend’s dinner party, and it’s owned by the previous owners of Sound Table, so there is always an amazing playlist paired with your food. (Another perk: it’s BYOB)

The Sound Table

Favorite for late night Friday dancing and the Felipe Pantone mural on the outside wall. Solid cocktails and perfect amount of space to explore.

Little Trouble

Slowly becoming the “artsy spot” for everyone, I still love the lights and little details about this West Midtown spot. The entire space is reminiscent of a Blade Runner cocktail lounge and you never know where the night will end up from there.

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EXCLUSIVE: Five Remarkable Recipes from Rockstar Chef Chris Santos

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It’s become a cliche already, “chefs are the new rockstars.” Though Jack White and Jimmy Page might take reasonable issue with that. But if one were going to bestow the honorific on any kitchen luminary, it would be Chris Santos.

From Stanton Social to Beauty & Essex to now the ambitious, grandiose but singularly cool, artistic (featuring spectacular murals by artists Hush, Apex and Shepard Fairey) international-street-food-influenced Vandal, he has changed the way Downtown eats. Indeed, his culinary philosophy of crossing cultures and offering sharing experiences perfectly captured the spirit of a new globally-minded generation.

He’s also been a judge on the Food Network’s Chopped.

His new book Share, just published by Hachette, exhibits that philosophy most vividly, a sort of rock & roll counter to all the humdrum cookbooks cluttering the shelves. To celebrate its release, he shared with BlackBook the details of some of his favorite dishes.

What did you learn about yourself as a chef when putting the cookbook together?

 I learned that putting together a cookbook is a lot more difficult than I originally thought. I have so many recipes over the years that I have grown to be very passionate about and love, so it really was a painful process narrowing down to only a certain amount. However, now I know I definitely will want to write more cookbooks in my future, so everyone can try making more of my favorite dishes.

What do you hope people will get out of the book that is different from other cookbooks?

 My favorite method of dining is sitting around a table with my friends and family and eating great food while still socializing. With my cookbook I provided recipes that make it easy to sit around a table, trying several different dishes while still being able to tell stories and spend time with your loved ones. In traditional restaurants, the standard method of dining is to start with an appetizer, then move on to your entree and finish with a dessert. Share plates help to make your dinner a bit more whimsical and fun.

 

Red Tequila Sangria

18 ounces (about 2¼ cups,
three-fourths of a 750-ml bottle)
medium-bodied red wine, such as
Rioja or Pinot Noir
10 ounces (1¼ cups) fresh orange
juice, preferably blood orange
5 ounces (2⁄3 cup) reposado tequila
5 ounces (2⁄3 cup) bourbon
4 ounces (½ cup) fresh lime juice
4 ounces (½ cup) Simple Syrup
(this page)
2 navel oranges, cut into thin
wheels, for garnish
2 limes, cut into thin wheels,
for garnish
 

Crab Corn Dogs with Old Bay Aioli

Santos Corn Dog cropped
Image by Quentin Bacon
OLD BAY AIOLI
  • ¾ cup House Aioli (page 50)
  • 2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
  • ¼ teaspoon hot pepper sauce,
  • such as Tabasco
CRAB CAKES
  • ½ cup House Aioli (page 50)
  • 4 tablespoons (½ stick) unsalted
  • butter, at very soft room temperature
  • 1 pound lump crabmeat, picked
  • over for cartilage
  • ½ cup panko (Japanese bread
  • crumbs), processed in a food
  • processor until very fine
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh
  • chives
  • ¾ teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
  • ¼ teaspoon hot pepper sauce,
  • such as Tabasco
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground
  • black pepper
BATTER
  • ½ cup (70 grams) unbleached
  • all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1½ cups buttermilk
  • 1 cup fine yellow cornmeal
  • 1 large egg, beaten to blend
  • Vegetable oil, for deep-frying
  • Special Equipment: 24 bamboo
  • party skewers

Beef and Broccoli

Santos broccoli cropped
Image by Quentin Bacon
MARINADE
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, cored and sliced
  • 1 medium yellow onion, sliced
  • 1⁄3 cup Japanese soy sauce
  • ¼ cup packed fresh cilantro leaves
  • 3 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped
  • fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon Thai or Vietnamese
  • fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped
  • jalapeño, with seeds
  • 2 teaspoons sriracha
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed under
  • a knife and peeled
  • 1 whole star anise, broken into
  • individual points
  • ½ teaspoon whole coriander
  • seeds
SHORT RIBS
  • 2 pounds cross-cut (flanken
  • or Korean-style) bone-in short ribs
  • 2 teaspoons ground Sichuan
  • peppercorns (ground in spice
  • grinder or mortar)
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 quart reduced-sodium
  • chicken broth
BROCCOLI PUREE
  • 8 ounces broccoli crowns, stems
  • peeled, tops and stems coarsely
  • chopped, about 2 cups
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • ½ cup chopped seeded green
  • bell pepper
  • 3 tablespoons chopped white onion
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh
  • cilantro
  • 2 teaspoons Japanese soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sriracha
  • About ½ cup reduced-sodium
  • chicken broth, as needed
  • 2 teaspoons Asian sesame oil
  • 18 Sticky Rice Cakes
  • (1 recipe, page 207)
  • 1 raw broccoli floret, cut into very
  • tiny florets, for garnish (optional)

French Toast Bread Pudding with Pumpkin Maple Syrup

Santos Bread Pudding cropped
Image by Quentin Bacon
SPICED CRÈME FRAÎCHE
  • ½ cup crème fraîche or sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
BREAD PUDDING
  • Soft butter, for the baking dish
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1¼ cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 8 cups (1-inch) cubes rich bread,
  • such as challah or brioche loaf,
  • preferably slightly stale,
  • about 10 ounces
  • PUMPKIN MAPLE SYRUP
  • 1 cup pure maple syrup
  • 2⁄3 cup solid-pack pumpkin puree
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • ¼ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

Juicy Lucy Sausage Biscuits

PIMIENTO CHEESE
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream,
  • heated to boiling
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded domestic
  • Fontina cheese
  • 1⁄3 cup (1½ ounces) shredded
  • sharp yellow Cheddar cheese
  • ¼ teaspoon granulated onion or onion
  • powder (see Chef Talk, page 257)
  • ¼ teaspoon granulated garlic or garlic
  • powder (see Chef Talk, page 257)
  • Pinch of kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons (¼-inch) diced piquillo
  • or jarred pimiento peppers
  • Vegetable oil, for the ramekin
SAUSAGE
  • 1¼ pounds ground pork
  • 1 tablespoon molasses (not blackstrap)
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley
  • flakes
  • 1 tablespoon ground sage
  • ¾ teaspoon ground coriander
  • ¼ teaspoon ground thyme
  • 1¼ teaspoons kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground
  • black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon hot red pepper
  • flakes
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
BISCUITS
  • 2 cups (240 grams) unbleached
  • all-purpose flour
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground
  • black pepper
  • ¼ cup (½ stick) unsalted butter, frozen
  • 1⁄3 cup (1½ ounces) sharp Cheddar
  • cheese, preferably white Cheddar
  • 2⁄3 cup buttermilk
  • 1⁄3 cup half-and-half
  • ½ cup vegetable oil

 

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INTERVIEW: Jessica Chastain and Niki Caro Explain How Their Holocaust Movie Ended Up Being a Modern Film

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The Zookeeper’s Wife tells the true story of a Polish couple who housed Jews in the Warsaw Zoo during the Holocaust, and were able to save the lives of more than 300 from the Warsaw Ghetto. The heartbreaking movie stars Jessica Chastain in the unforgettable role of Antonina Żabińska, and is directed by Niki Caro.

The movie is unique in it’s feminine perspective on a grueling war saga, and thanks to it’s inclusion of many wild animal actors: Chastain’s roster of scene partners include real tigers, elephants, camels, polar bears, skunks, and lions. Interestingly enough, the film, set in the early to mid twentieth century, feels alarmingly modern.

“Well, the world’s changed,” said Caro when asked about the film’s relevancy. “Seven years ago, when I became involved in this movie, I thought I was developing a historical drama. As it happens, we have made a contemporary film.”

Take a look at our exclusive BlackBook interview with the film’s star and director below.

A (Very) Insider Guide to London Eating and Drinking

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Above image: Oldroyd

There was a time not all too long ago, when eating well in London meant hitting up some unassuming corner dive where they just happened to make a great curry. But the city’s post-Millennial food revolution has gone so far as to cause French culinary god Alain Ducasse to actually call it the best dining city in the world now.

Super trendy hotspots abound: celeb-bedecked Chiltern Firehouse; Jason Atherton’s Social Eating House; The Clove Club in hipsterwhelmed Shoreditch. But what if you just wanted to hit the capital for a few genuinely great meals (or a good pint), with lots of local charm, and without all the glam trimmings (and puffed up prices)?

To that end, we asked New York girl-about-town Rachel Felder, who would admit to London being a sort of spiritual home, for her best under-the-radar picks (from hip Islington to pretty Primrose Hill), which she elaborates on below.All appear in her fabulous new book Insider London (Harper Collins), in which she takes the reader on a whirl through what can be a rather apoplexy-inducing city, whittling it down to the absolute gems of dining, drinking, shopping, hotels and culture. With its striking photography, it is a masterstroke of Englishness: stylish, eccentric and utterly brilliant.

 

Oldroyd

This tiny duplex restaurant, tucked quietly down one of the main thoroughfares in Islington, serves truly wonderful Italian food in a setting that’s relaxed and mellow. It’s an ideal spot for a date, or just a leisurely lunch with friends on a weekend.

Rochelle Canteen

Shoreditch has become intensely hipster-ified over the last several years, but this hidden little spot is marvelously low key, although it’s just a few blocks from the area’s trendy bustle nearby. It’s essentially the extension of a catering business; open just during the day, breakfast is particularly good here, especially the granola, which is made on the premises.

Lemonia

This is a truly neighborhoody restaurant in one of London’s most charming areas, Primrose Hill, a genteel little nook that’s an easy stroll from Camden. The Greek food is authentic and delicious – especially the spanakopita, or flaky spinach pie – and it’s also a great spot for people watching, including, occasionally, a sighting of one of celebs that lives nearby.

 

  • Rochelle Canteen
  • The Duck & Rice
  • Tayyabs
  • 69 Colebrooke Row

 

Tayyabs

It’s not hard to find a good Indian restaurant in London, but this one might well be one of the best. It’s unpretentious and friendly, with truly wonderful (and filling and not overly expensive) food; you’ll rarely see a tourist at this East End spot, but it’s pretty much always crowded with people from the neighborhood and beyond.

Beigel Bake

For decades, this fabulous (and fabulously cheap) bakery has been beloved for its doughy bagels (aka beigels). Unlike almost everything in London, it’s open 24 hours, and pretty much always busy – so the bagels are always fresh (and, frequently, warm too.) There are plenty of fillings offered, but, personally, I love the bagels here just plain, eaten while walking down Brick Lane.

Marksman

There’s something undeniably inviting about a classic pub; this one, quite near the Columbia Road market in East London, makes you feel like a regular even on the first visit. But it has something extra: a seriously excellent restaurant upstairs, especially for traditional British Sunday roast lunch.

69 Colebrooke Row

Although it’s in the heart of Islington, this elegant cocktail bar has a truly insidery feel: it’s in a residential nook, on an unglitzy corner, without big signage or any fanfare. It’s got a real feeling of glamour – more that of an Italian champagne bar circa 1958 than a North London bar today – without being overly fancy or stuffy.

The Duck and Rice

A pub atmosphere and inventive Chinese food might seem like an odd combination, but at The Duck and Rice it somehow works. Downstairs, the focus is on beer and light bites; upstairs, the food is more of a priority. (The specialty is, appropriately enough, Cantonese style roast duck; but the Singapore fried noodles are also fabulous.) It’s in the heart of Soho and lively, even on a weeknight evening, although it’s understandably packed on weekends.

 

  • Marksman
  • Lemonia
  • Tayyabs
  • Beigel Bake