4 Out of 5: Roy Dank on New York

Roy Dank never sits still. The founder and creative director at Wurst spends way too much time on the road DJ’ing, and not enough time in the studio making music, designing, nor spending quality time with his girlfriend. This is his take on four places he likes, and one place he doesn’t.

RECOMMENDED

Tsushima – "This unassuming Midtown sushi spot boasts the best fish in the city by a landslide but without any of the hype. If you typically take your fish unrolled and sans soy sauce, you can’t go wrong here."

Hickoree’s Hard Goods – "Like a grown man’s candy store, this second-floor shop in the south side of Williamsburg has everything from great clothes by under-the-radar brands like Manastash and Tender Co and the now ubiquitous in-house brand The Hill-side, alongside wacky items like Rite in the Rain notebooks and doorstops. And actual candy like Big League Chew to boot."

DBGB Kitchen & Bar – "Yes, you’d be forgiven for thinking the DB sands for ‘douche bag,’ but truth be told this spot’s got the best burger in Manhattan right now, with only Peter Luger trumping it for the city crown. I’ll probably get a ton of shit for such a bold proclamation, but I went on a whim recently and couldn’t believe my taste buds. Skip the gimmicky crap and just order ‘The Yankee.’ Damn good selection of brews to wash it down with."

Russian & Turkish Baths – "A little slice of paradise in the East Village, not to mention a nice trip back to the old New York. Spend an hour or so there and you’ll feel like a million bucks. Bonus points for the homemade borscht and blini and the crazy discount offers thrown your way as you pay."

NOT SO MUCH

Five Leaves – "Used to love this place when they first opened, but over the past year it’s become both nearly impossible to get in at any reasonable time (including weekday lunch over the summer), and both the food and service have gone steadily downhill. Too many of my friends gush far too much about the always overcooked lumpy burger with the way-too-big bun."

Kicking It in Greenpoint With MTV Star Peter Vack

"I don’t want to sound like I’m badmouthing Manhattan,” Peter Vack says as he strolls up Manhattan Avenue in the North Brooklyn neighborhood of Greenpoint, “But the one thing I really love about Brooklyn is that the interesting places here are owned by actual people.” Vack still lives on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, but he’s planning a move to the old Polish enclave—now equal parts hipster and kielbasa—where he spends a considerable amount of time filming I Just Want My Pants Back. While the MTV show depicts typical twentysomething Brooklyn anomie at large, it’s set mostly in Greenpoint. “I think it’s important that we actually film here rather than in a studio or in Los Angeles,” he says.

On a crisp morning in October, the 25-year-old actor took us on a tour of his favorite local antique stores and cafes. “There’s such an appreciation right now for old items and artifacts,” he says. “I think we’re drawn to those things because you can feel them. They’re not digital, like so many things today… they’re real.”
 
Peter Vak 2
 
Five Leaves – 18 Bedford Ave., 718-383-5345
I’m always tempted to come here when I’m in this neighborhood. It’s such a great spot. The funny thing about Five Leaves is that it’s fairly expensive. I feel like it blows every hipster’s cover by proving that they have money. The place is always packed with all of these people who are trying to be artistic types. There’s clearly money in Greenpoint. But the food is delicious. They have these great things called Devils on Horseback, which are baked dates with bacon wrapped around them. They’re amazing! And I like to bourge it up a bit sometimes and get oysters. I feel like Five Leaves is kind of the entryway for Greenpoint; it’s right on the cusp of Williamsburg and Greenpoint, and it’s almost like an initiation. Step One of Greenpoint: Go to Five Leaves.
 
Peter Vak 3
 
Franchesca Mini Market – 1074 Manhattan Ave., 718-383-0463
This is one of the locations on the show. One of the main characters is a bodega owner, and we all frequent this store and have our morning-after discussions. It’s also a great local Greenpoint mini-mart where you can get all sorts of things, from religious icons to Olde English.
 
Peter Vak 4
 
Word – 126 Franklin St., 718-383-0096
I’ve always wanted to be an actor, and I feel like I can contribute to the world of films and TV. But if I felt I could contribute to literature, I would totally try. I’m so moved by great books, and I do aspire to write a novel. Even if I wrote the shittiest novel in the world, just to have a novel would be enough. Word is such a quaint little place to sit and read. It feels so much better to buy a book from somebody who doesn’t work in a corporate chain.
 
Peter Vak 5
 
Luddite – 201 Franklin St., 718-387-3450
My dad opened up a pizza place in Crown Heights, and once, when we were looking for some stools, I discovered this place. We found these beautiful stools here called Toledo stools, and they’re, like, 90 years old. They’re so well-made and were probably used in some industrial place. But they really were perfect for
the restaurant, because we were going for an aesthetic that suggested it had been around for a long time.
 
Peter Vak 6
 
Kill Devil Hill – 170 Franklin St., 347-534-3088
I stumbled upon this place when I had some downtime. It really charmed the hell out of me. The owner curates the most interesting items and has a really cool mix of new and old stuff. Like this belt buckle that can hold your Metrocard. You walk in there and feel like you’ve gone back in time to the ’40s or the ’50s. The owner also does denim repair; I have some jeans I should bring to her. The rents aren’t super expensive around here, so people can bring to fruition these cool, quirky, really idiosyncratic business ideas.

5 Things Not to Do in NYC, According to Simian Mobile Disco

The last run-in I had with Simian Mobile Disco was kind of strange. I was in bed on the early side when my door suddenly burst open and the Klaxons enter along with James Ford (of Simian Mobile Disco) and my roommate Cat (she’ll kill me for saying this, but she was the “white girl” in the band Fannypack). The Klaxons had performed on Dave Letterman that day, and seeing as I was the only one in my apartment that had a TV (and the fact they were just around the corner), they wanted to see themselves in action. This was almost two years ago, and the boys are still insane as ever—in a good way. James had mentioned something about working on a new album, and lo and behold, they promoted it last night at Santos’. Simian Mobile Disco (James Ford and James Shaw) is no stranger to NYC, and could actually work as ambassadors for our lovely city. So pay attention to their five things not to do in the Big Apple.

Don’t stay in your hotel room NYC is probably our favorite city to visit in the world. There is so much to do it’s almost impossible to get bored. There is great food on every corner and just wandering around still feels like being on a film set.

Don’t go to McDonald’s There are hundreds of better options for a good burger. Why not try Walker’s in Tribeca or Diner under the Williamsburg bridge or 5 Leaves in Greenpoint?

Don’t go with a full suitcase Clothes shopping in NYC is second to none. You can find every normal shop in Soho, but if you head towards the Lower East Side/East Village, there are some of the best secondhand shops ever.

Don’t go to Starbucks It was always said that it was impossible to get good coffee in NYC, but times have changed. Why not try La Colombe in Manhattan or Blue Bottle Coffee in Brooklyn?

Don’t get a cab everywhere Although yellow cabs are everywhere, New York has quite a small footprint, so its amazing to walk around. You can always find a hidden cocktail bar/pizza slice/boutique guitar pedal shop, that you never knew existed.

Industry Insiders: Robert Childs, All Suited Up

When menswear designer Robert Childs first entered the offices of Thom Browne, he was a student at FIT and an intern at Adam Kimmel. He saw himself designing extreme sports ware and didn’t own a suit. “Never once did it cross my mind where I was like, ‘Man, I want to work for Thom Browne,’” says Childs. “It was actually kind of the other way around. I was always telling my friends, ‘I’m in fashion because I never want to wear a suit.’ I just kind of stumbled into it.” Now Childs spends his days overseeing Browne’s meticulously tailored designs, from start to finish: “My job is to help Thom realize the collections from concept to the show. Pretty much anything he needs to get done, I facilitate.” This season, that includes Thom Browne’s much-anticipated first collection for women. Here’s Childs on the new collection, the Thom Browne design process, and his own intriguing story—how he went from community college drop-out to showroom staple.

First interest in fashion: I don’t know when I first got into fashion. I was a junior or a senior in high school and me and my friends were skateboarding, wake boarding, and surfing a lot and doing a bunch of ‘alternative sports.’ I wanted to make clothes we could wear because the clothes that I wanted to buy were never cool enough.

On Plan A: I had the bright idea to go to business school. My friend at the time was moving to Gainesville, Florida and I didn’t apply to any colleges at all. So, I moved to Gainesville and decided to go to community college because my friend had a house up there. I dropped out of because I hated business school. I moved back home and just kept working on what I was doing. My mom’s friend taught me how to sew and I wasn’t very good at it at the time. I was like, “F*** this.” I applied to FIT because I thought I wanted to go right into the fashion end and design.

On his experience at FIT: I got an acceptance letter to FIT, packed up what little things I had, and moved to New York. I was this little guy from Key West moving to New York. It was crazy. Every day waking up and going, “Wow. I’m in New York City.” Went to school for two years. Got an Associates Degree. Learned to sew like a badass. Never once did it cross my mind where I was like, “Man. I want to work for Thom Browne.”

On how he got the job: It was absolutely bizarre. I knocked on the door, walked into this office and everybody turns at me. I’m super casual and everyone is in a suit. Everyone just looks at me and I’m like, “Uh. Uh. I just wanted to speak to the design director or whatever. You know…Is Thom in?” They’re like, “No.” The CFO at the time came up to me and said, “What do you need?” I was like, “I just want to hand you my resume. I work at Adam Kimmel upstairs. I’m looking for a job. I was hoping you could hand this to Thom for me.” And, he said, “Okay. I’ll give it to the design director for you.” The next day or the day after, Thom calls me up and he’s like, “Hey Rob. It’s Thom. I want you to come in for an interview.” I went home and banged out a little project for him. I did like 12 or 15 looks. I brought it in and presented it to him. I was freaking out thinking about what I was going to wear to this interview for the guy who makes the best suits in the world. So, I borrowed a suit from Kimmel. I’ll never forget it. We sat there talking for a long time. I thought it went terribly, but I guess he liked me. The next day he called me and offered me a job. I’m super stoked.

On the day-to-day: My job is to help Thom realize the collections from concept to the show. Pretty much anything he needs to get done, I facilitate. It’s never visual. He doesn’t like us to look at inspirational pictures or anything like that. It’s more of taking from the everyday. We never use color charts. The colors develop as we develop fabrics. Nowadays, we’re developing 90% of all the fabrics we get. I never thought I’d be designing fabrics. Designing accessories and looks from start to finish, anything that he wants. It’s a lot of work, but it’s a lot of fun.

What he has to offer: What I bring to the table for Thom Browne is very not so Thom Browne which adds a cool mix to it. I get to think a lot more and think outside the box and push myself to think about these crazy, cool concepts that I don’t think I’d ever really think about if I wasn’t working for Thom Browne.

The end-result: It’s so cool to be able to work for five or six months then, though it is really short at the end – that show – it’s like 15 minutes and can make or break your entire six months of work. When, it’s done, it’s like, “Oh. It went so well.”

What to expect in the new women’s line: We’re gonna show in September at Fashion Week. I hope. That’s the plan. I don’t know how much I’m supposed to talk about. It’s gonna be very “Tom Browne for women”. A lot of fabric ideas for men translated to women. We’re also taking some of the more classic men’s fabrics and using them for women. It’s very tailored, but at the same time, trying to make it suit a woman’s body.

Favorite designers (other than Thom Browne, of course): I really like Junya Wantnabe. I’ve always followed what he’s been doing. I think that he a lot of the time really hits the mark. The other guy, Patrik Ervell, is based out of New York… and, Adam Kimmel.

Go-To Places: There’s a place called Five Leaves. Really good food. Been there a couple times and its tasty for sure. There’s another restaurant in the city, Dell’anima. It’s so good. Doughnut Planet for sweets. Then, of course, for a burger, I like to go to Shake Shack. I go when it’s raining. It’s wet, so nobody’s in line.

Emily Gould on ‘And The Heart Says Whatever’

“Maybe we can get the truffle fries,” Emily Gould says with a smile, glibly referring to Lynne Hirschberg’s recent and controversial New York Times profile of artist M.I.A. “We’ll do a dramatic reenactment.” No stranger to controversy herself, Gould has biked through the rain to Five Leaves, a restaurant in her old neighborhood, Greenpoint, in order to show me some of her favorite haunts. Greenpoint is also the setting for many of the most memorable chapters in her new memoir And the Heart Says Whatever (Free Press, May 2010). Gould was living here when she got her first nine-to-five job in publishing, when she left publishing to co-edit Gawker—New York’s premier online media gossip rag—and when she moved out on her longtime stoner boyfriend and into a hippie loft. For airing the details of her personal life, especially early on in her blogging career, in such an public and, some argue, self-involved way, Gould has accrued many admirers and many detractors. And yet, in her memoir, where she describes deliberately hurting and manipulating people, she writes, “I would be lying if I said I was a different person now. I am the same person.”

The restaurant is crowded with hipsters in small lace-up sneakers and skinny ties. The waiters, unfazed by the photographer taking pictures of Gould, have to squeeze by us as we drink our Bloody Marys. Gould shifts comfortably between talking, posing, and sipping her drink. She has the qualities of an actress: gregariousness, charm, and an unnervingly natural disposition. She doesn’t seem at all like the self-conscious narrator of her memoir, which was unfavorably reviewed by The New York Times Book Review this past weekend. “My editor made it seem so much worse than it was,” she says. Still, she feels lucky to have been reviewed by the Times.

Gould’s book explores her experiences as an excruciatingly aware, unrelentingly ambitious twenty-something new to the big city. I tell her I think it’s honest of her to say that she’s the same person she was then. “I’m reformed. I’m not saying that I go out and try to reenact experiences I had when I was twenty-three. But people want to believe that the best moments of their lives are happening right now,” she says. “Getting older has a lot of great things associated with it, but it’s great to be young. It was great.” And while she avers that being overly aware makes life more difficult, she says, “I wouldn’t want to be less aware.”

Gould has recently returned from a book tour that included cities along the East Coast and stops in L.A. About touring and reactions to her book in general, she says, “It became apparent to me really quickly that some people really love it and have an intense connection to it, like a favorite album. Some people cried. And some people just didn’t get it or were like ‘Oh this is ridiculous, it’s so vapid.’” To the New Yorker blogger who wrote that her book should only be read as a parlor game, she says, “That stuff is my heart.”

By the time we’re ready to order, the waiter, who is new, mentions that the Breakfast/Lunch menu is no longer available, and replaces it with “In-Between menus.” “Let’s do the blue-point oysters,” Gould decides. She’s unabashedly self-possessed, though not invulnerable. Her language is peppered with terms of empowerment. When she discusses a trip she took to Russia, she states that what she loves about Russian women is their assertiveness, comparing the way she’d act in a subway (she’d apologize to a person who stepped on her toe) to the way a Russian woman would act (Gould holds her head high and neck straight, conveying unflinching composure). When I ask her about listening to feedback, negative feedback in particular, Gould says she tries not to stop and listen to it because “no matter how great you are, you’re also really powerless.” In a blog post (she has three Tumblr sites in addition to Emily Magazine) she states: “I am a good cook. That is actually the one area that I feel completely comfortable in saying that I excel. But none of this explains why I have been known to pack bag lunches, unbidden. Why am I trying to make another person rely on me for food?. It has to do with loving to cook and eat, sure, but mostly for me at least it has to do with control.”

A Fleetwood Mac song starts playing. “I asked them to put this on,” she says and smiles.

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As an elevated seafood stand is placed on our table and our empty Bloody Mary glasses replaced with a Pimm’s Cup for me and Shandy for Gould, Emily looks out the window. We discuss a panel on feminism she recently attended. It seems she’s thought a lot about the particular predicament professional women are forced to face. “Women think and say they want agency in their own lives, but agency comes with responsibility. It’s easier for women to have power in the traditional domestic realm and a lot of people—me included—struggle with the idea that we’ll have to give that up if we want power outside it.” Gould reaches over and lifts my glass of Pimm’s Cup, taking a sip. “Oh, that’s good,” she says.

These days, Gould seems satisfied with life. She continues to blog daily, teach yoga, and do intermittent gigs related to literature and/or blogging (she sits on the Blog Hard panel during Internet Week). Yet she seems wistful when talking about the person she was when she was working as an assistant editor at Hyperion, a person whose goals were different. Gould sums up those erstwhile ambitions as follows: “Go forward at Hyperion, kick ass there, be an executive editor, be making six figures, get married and move to Park Slope, have adorable children and a really understanding husband.” She pauses, then adds, “But I think on some level I was conscious of the fact that I was dating a pothead in a band.”

While she’s not a huge Twitterer, she swears by Tumblr to self-publish. (Her three blogs are Cooking the Books, Things I Ate That I Love, Salad for Breakfast) “It’s very performative, writing online,” Gould says. “You really are there and can notice when your audience stops paying attention and responding.” It’s easy to see why she has a large following. She’s a curious, thinking person who articulates her thoughts with intelligence and charm—and a person who likes to engage. While most of her blogs these days are devoted to her personal interests, such as cooking, her Tumblr allows her to indulge in other whims, like The Daily Otter. It “puts cute pictures up every day. A new otter. How wonderful is that?”

After we finish lunch, Emily puts on her blue windbreaker, hood and all, and heads off umbrella-less in the rain to Café Grumpy. Checking Twitter when I get home, I see I have a new follower and a new @reply. It was from Emily, and read: “at my interview with @Ruschka today we ordered ironic truffle fries. At least I hope they were ironic. They were tasty, anyway.”

Photography by Shoko Takayasu.

Where Celebs Go Out: Hugh Jackman, Parker Posey, Reshma Shetty

At the premiere of City Island:

● ANDY GARCIA – “In New York there are so many great restaurants. There’s an old one I’ve gone here for many years that I like to visit, just out of nostalgia. It’s a very good restaurant. It’s called Il Vagabondo. It has a bocce court in it. It’s just a very picturesque place; very, good food. Cipriani’s. There’s a new one called Nino’s. Scalinatella — a lot of Italian restaurants, you can tell. I always pop my head into Victor’s Cafe. And then, I’ve got to have a Gray’s Papaya hot dog here.” Any plans to visit Cuba? “Oh, I dream about visiting Cuba every day. But some people have to leave there first.” ● HUGH JACKMAN – “I’m a real junkie for Jean-Georges Vongerichten. I love his cooking. I just went to his place up in The Mark, and I was lucky enough to go to his new restaurant down at ABC Carpet and Home — all organic, every ingredient’s within an 100-mile radius. The food is just unbelievable there, so … Any special dish? Chicken. He told me his secret: brine. You got to brine your chicken.” ● VERA WANG –“I like Morimoto, and I like Bar Masa, and I love the new Mark Hotel, and Sant Ambroeus, uptown and downtown, Mr. Chow’s. I go out to eat a lot — you can tell.”

● SANDRA BERNHARD – “I love Cookshop, which is downtown. I love BLT Fish, one of my favorite restaurants. Babbo. Of course, I love 2nd Avenue Deli. I’m very into trying to eat locally, sustainably grown food. I’m doing more and more cooking at home because of my daughter. And I’ve always eaten very balanced and healthy, but, to me, it’s about really preserving the environment, as well.” ● ZOE KRAVITZ –Five Leaves in Brooklyn, in Greenpoint. Delicious.” ● PARKER POSEY – “I’m trying to give a good recommendation for something. Mary’s Fish Camp.” ● DOMINIK GARCIA-LORIDO – “Oh, wow! I’m, like, so not a club person anymore. I’m pretty much a homebody. I live in L.A., so … I like more dive bars and chill spots where you can hear good music. I don’t like really sceney places. I don’t like where you have to dress up. I’m more, have a beer and chill; watch a game. I have to give a shout-out to the guy I work for, as a waitress. I still work there. It’s a lounge in Studio City, California, called Next Door Tapas. It’s attached to an Italian restaurant, La Loggia. It’s a really chill, tapas bar in the Valley. It’s got good drinks and good food.” ● STEVEN STRAIT –The Smile on Bond Street — really, really cool place; a little coffee shop that’s got great food, great coffee; really relaxed, cool place. I grew up here, but I don’t live here anymore. I love staying at the Chelsea Hotel. It’s got so much character; really, amazing history; inspiring place. It’s really kept to its roots. The city’s expanded around it. It’s really held firm. I appreciate that.” ● RESHMA SHETTY – “My favorite restaurant, at the moment, is Jack’s Luxury Oyster Bar. I love that place. Bar-wise, the Russian Vodka Room does a mean apple martini. And they have a fabulous happy hour: $5, 4-6.” ● GRAHAM PHILLIPS – “One thing that’s been fun is that I’ve noticed is that all the best pizzerias are in Brooklyn, and I used to never really go to Brooklyn, but now that the show [The Good Wife] films in Brooklyn, I’ve been going to all these pizzerias. I have a list on my phone. Someone sent it to me. I’ve just been trying to check ’em all off my list. Joe’s Pizza, Bleecker and Carmine, unbelievable! Di Fara, Brooklyn, Avenue J — I tried that. That was unbelievable! I also tried Grimaldi’s. And they were all unbelievable. They’re all in the same genre of this authentic New York pizza, but they all have their little twist to it.”

Industry Insiders: Julie Farias, the General’s Butcher

As one of the many talented cuisiniers participating in Le Fooding D’Amour (September 25-26 at at New York’s P.S.1), Julie Farias knows a thing or two about a good cut of meat. The Texas-born chef—who recently moved from Brooklyn’s Beer Table to The General Greene—worked for Daniel Boulud for five years (at Café Boulud, db Bistro Moderne, and Daniel), but attributes much of her culinary know-how to her southern upbringing and family influence (her clan owns a tortilla factory inside a San Antonio meat market). Farias tells us about working in kitchens on both coasts and how Le Fooding is going to taste for New Yorkers. In her case, it’s going to taste like tacos made from 40 cow heads.

What influenced your move from Beer Table to The General Greene? Nicholas Morgenstern, the owner of The General Greene, and I met at Daniel when he was the pastry sous-chef there and I was working the soup station. We worked together at 5Ninth. There, I was the opening sous and he was the pastry chef, and then we also worked together at Resto. I’ve known him for a really long time, and before last year, I was living and working in Los Angeles and Las Vegas on a project for the Palazzo. Nick came out to see me and asked me to come to his new restaurant, The General Greene, and I didn’t think anything of it. I said that I wasn’t in the position to leave. When I came back from Vegas, I moved to Beer Table. Owners Justin and Tricia Philips were friends of mine, and they needed a little help setting up the menu. They said, “We have this place, and there’s no kitchen, but we love your food and we think that this would work out.” And I loved the idea of it more than anything. Especially the spatial challenge. We had no kitchen at Beer Table. There was a convection oven, no dishwasher, no prep, no kitchen. When you take things away and you have bare essentials, it made me think about food in a different way. I always thought that fire was a bare essential but I realized that electricity is. I’m not as much of a Neanderthal as I thought I was. The timing was eventually right when Nicholas asked me again, and it just had to happen. He’s a fantastic partner.

What were you doing in Las Vegas? I was working for a gentleman named Jonathan Morr. He owns Republic and Bond St. We opened an Asian noodle restaurant called Mainland at the Palazzo Hotel and Casino. I created the menu, and I was also Jonathan’s consulting chef. I traveled from New York to Miami to Los Angeles to Vegas. I did consulting work for Thompson Hotels out there, creating their room service menu. I also lived and worked at Hotel Oceana in Santa Monica. I had no home for a year.

What was it like building the menu at The General Greene? I’m going to give a metaphor: me being here right now is, in some ways, like cutting in on a dancer. I’m about to dance with the pretty girl, so I’m cutting in and I have to keep up the pace for whatever waltz or jitterbug or lindy-hop they’re doing. There’s already a rhythm here; it’s a successful restaurant. Nick has asked me to work on organization, on execution, kitchen techniques, things like that, and keep up on the quality of products. It was a very big change to go from one burner to a stove and a downstairs and four to five cooks and a dishwasher.

What should we order on our first visit? We have bar snacks, and my favorite one right now is the bacon dates—dates wrapped in bacon and cooked in maple syrup. After that, you’d have to try the butter lettuce with a lemon vinaigrette, curried almonds and ruby-red grapefruit. I’m a big fan of ruby-red grapefruit. For me, they are a little sweeter, a better color, and before, we were using regular grapefruit on this dish. I also put collared greens on the menu, and these you have to try. They’re sautéed with garlic, red pepper chilies, and a squeeze of lemon juice. You have to try the chuck flap steak from Niman Ranch. It’s something known as a bavette, and it’s a tough kind of meat meant to be cooked medium rare. We grill it then slice it thin, and we serve it with a roasted garlic sauce with olive oil and Portuguese sea salt. It’s got a really hearty flavor. Then, you have to finish it off with a salty caramel sundae. It’s a hot caramel cake with salted caramel ice cream, whipped cream, caramel sauce, and then crushed, salted mini pretzels on top of it. It’s out of this world. You may have to stop by Nick’s Greene Ice Cream Cart as well.

How did you get involved with Le Fooding? It turns out, [Le Fooding founder] Alexandre Cammas lives in the neighborhood. His wife, Natalie, had actually had dinner at Beer Table, and so there was sort of a little match-making there, and they contacted me and came down to The General Greene.

What will you prepare for the September Le Fooding D’Amour event? I’m doing tête de veau tacos or “veal head.” It’s traditional barbacoa from San Antonio, Texas. I’m doing this classic recipe here, and I think it makes sense with the idea of the picnic setting. I actually smoked one of the cow heads today. They’re kind of scary looking. I’m going to be smoking about 40 of them for the event. They’re really kind of magnificent with the eyes, the skull, and the teeth.

Will New Yorkers embrace the Le Fooding concept? New Yorkers are all about food. I came here from Texas to cook. I returned to New York from Vegas because I felt that there was more of a focus on and interest in food here—from grocery stores to cooking at home. In keeping with this mentality, to me, it just seems like Le Fooding is a very natural thing. People will be attracted to this, and Alex’s interest in graphic design is reflected in the style of the event. Why would New Yorkers not want to come? I think that Alex’s goal is definitely going to be fulfilled.

What are your favorite bars and restaurants? Because I’ve been working at The General Greene so much, I’ve been limiting my going out to Brooklyn. I love Five Leaves and Char No. 4. They do a lot of smoked meat, and I butcher there on Mondays. Defonte’s in Red Hook is a sandwich place, and oh my God, it’s super yummy. I love the Skybox at Daniel. For drinking, I’m kind of a liquor snob … but when I feel like being a bit more on the rowdy side, I go to the Palace Cafe in Greenpoint. Budweiser and Jack & Coke is about as sophisticated of a drink you’ll get there. All of these places are in keeping with the same mood.

Nicholas Morgenstern and Julie Farias photographed by Michael Harlan Turkell.

BlackBook Staff Picks: Dining, Drinking, Shopping, & Staying

Here at BlackBook, we pay a lot of attention to where cool customers go out — bars, clubs, restaurants, shops, hotels, you name it. So why not flip the frame and let you see where we go out? Here’s a periodically updated, exhaustive list of hotspots currently favored by everyone at BlackBook, from the mighty bosses down to the humble interns, from the charming local lounges around the corner to the jet-setting temples of luxe living.

EDITORIAL ● Editorial Director/Editor-in-Chief – Ray Rogers, Café Mogador (NYC) – Hummus, crack-caliber coffee, and outdoor patio for primo people-judging and “novel writing.” ● Creative Director – Jason Daniels, Babettes (East Hampton) – Don’t let the word “organic” turn you off . ● Executive Editor – Chris Mohney, Pegu Club (NYC) – OCD cocktail heaven. Pith helmet and ivory cane optional. ● Senior Editor – Nick Haramis, The Jane Hotel and Ballroom (NYC) – Latest smash from Sean MacPherson and Eric Goode gets all Edwardian on the WVill.

● Editor-at-Large – James Servin, The Raleigh (Miami) – The local equivalent of LA’s Chateau Marmont. ● Staff Writer – Ryan Adams, Republic (NYC) – Minimalist fave and only vaguely communist, which is more fun than the full-bore thing. ● Writer-at-Large – Alison Powell, Wurstküche (LA) – Hey, sausages! Downtown hipsters with a secret inner-manly-man are pleased. ● West Coast Editor – Matt Diehl, Cole’s (LA) – The 100-year-old buffet-style cafeteria comes back as something new (but the French dip stays). ● Nightlife Correspondent – Steve Lewis, La Esquina (NYC) – Day and night, eating, meeting and playing. ● Paris Correspondent – Dana Thomas, Hemingway Bar at the Ritz Hotel (Paris) – Posh sips & historic ambiance at the Ritz. ● Assistant Editors – Ben Barna, Tokyo (Montreal) – Buy one for the buff bartender while you’re at it—he’s a starving actor. Cayte GrieveCafé Asean (NYC) Foster Ethan KamerLa Superior (NYC) – Quite possibly the best little taqueria this side of town. ● Editorial Assistant – Eiseley Tauginas, Alta (NYC) – Alta, as in “high,” as in “haute,” at this sexy Village tapas spot. ● Copy Editor – Michèle Filon, Sripraphai (NYC) ● Editorial Interns – Annie Clinton Moto (NYC) – High-flavor food with dungeon loos. Sure, Moto’s for metros, but it’s hot anyway. Delia Paunescu Schiller’s Liquor Bar (NYC) – McNally’s successful entrée into the LES mess. Desiree Pais, Lit (NYC) – Rock bar du jour for hos and bros of the ain’t we the shit? set. Alexandra Vickers, Colette (Paris) – Art, style, music, sex and water.

ART ● Art Director – Amy Steinhauser, Five Leaves (NYC) – Café posthumously funded by Heath Ledger does justice to the work and hype put into it. ● Photography Assistant – Stephanie Swanicke, Brandy Library (NYC) – Highbrow mixology, let us know when it’s time to dust off the antique bottles on the upper shelf. ● Design/Photo Interns – Angela Chen, Dinosaur BBQ (NYC) – Roadhouse bringing southerners to Northern Manhattan. Krista Quick – Ottobar (Baltimore) – What can we say, this place rocks.Jeremy Jones – Tokyo Bar, (NYC) – Schizo décor and food, but decently done all the same.

FASHION & BEAUTY ● Fashion Director-at-Large – Elizabeth Sulcer, China Grill (NYC) -Heaping plates of Asian fusion amid fashionable environs. ● Market Editor – Bryan Levandowski, Bondi Road (NYC) – Wizards of Aus in NYC, we like your style. ● Fashion Assistant – Wilson Mathews III, Per Se (NYC) – Advanced gastronomy at the Time Warner Center. Thomas Keller pulls out all the stops. ● Fashion Interns – Samantha Shaw, Chez Janou (Paris) – Boisterous southern bistro near the Place des Vosges. Julien Blanc, La Esquina (NYC) – Fairly authentic Mexican and one of the city’s best-known “secret” bars. Laura Watters, Café Habana (NYC) – Scarfing roast pork is so much better when Mary-Kate is watching, longingly. Lindsay Abrams, Sketch: Gallery (London) – Quirky soho hot spot. BlackBook magazine Founder – Evanly Schindler, The Smile (NYC) – Earnest Sewn owners take over abandoned Double Crown space for Med-inspired cafe/boutique.

BLACKBOOK MEDIA CORP ● Chairman – Bob Hoff, Guys & Dolls (LA) – Sophisticated sexy in West Hollywood. 7 nights a week. ● CEO – Ari Horowitz, L’Ecole (NYC) – Get schooled in fine French cuisine at this tasty training center. ● Associate Publisher – Brett Wagner, Café Select (NYC) – SoHo café marries Swiss Alpine to downtown design, garners Next Brunch Place status. ● Director of Finance and Operations – Joe Friedman, Lucky Strike Lanes (NYC) – Scenester bowling from the dudes behind Marquee and Tao. ● Corporate Counsel – Drew Patrick of Drew Patrick Law, Dutch Kills (NYC) – Modern-day antique saloon from New York’s cocktail kings. ● Executive Assistant – Bridgette Bek, Motorino (NYC) – Belgian-bred Mathieu Palombino’s Billyburg pizza joint serves up personal pan-sized genius, one pie at a time.

ADVERTISING ● Senior Account Executive – Dina Matar, Gascogne (NYC) – Southern French cooking without the Southern French ‘tude. ● Account Executive – Brian Kantor, Botanica (NYC) – Dive that must be working some kind of Santeria to keep prices down in this excessive nabe. ● Executive Director, BlackBook Access – Gregg Berger, La Piaggia (Miami) – Keep your feet in the sand and your hand on the rosé glass at this waterfront café francaise. ● Detroit Account Executives – Jeff Hannigan, Blind Tiger Ale House (NYC) – Beer bar institution finds new home, devoted crowd. Kristen von Bernthal, Pure Food and Wine (NYC) – Say goodbye to a future of pacemakers and a gut the shape of China. Raw food is real food. ● Midwest Account Executives – Susan Welter, Perennial (Chicago) – This could easily become Chicago’s summer hotspot for years to come. ● Andrea Forrester, Mirai (Chicago) – Thumpin’ music and bumpin’ elbows don’t deter crowds from gathering for some of the city’s finest sushi. ● Southwest Account Executive – Molly Ballantine, Gjelina (LA) – New Venice, new American hotspot takes on Hollywood posturing and tude. ● Northwest Account Executives – Catherine Hurley, 15 Romolo (San Francisco) – Bourbon & Branch without the passwords and financial types. Shawn O’Meara, Suppenküche (San Francisco) – Fun place, hearty food. Check the diet at the door. Sales Coordinator – Claire Pujol, Fat Baby (NYC) – Dank in a clean way. Do not enter without skinny jeans.

MARKETING ● Marketing Manager – Julie Fabricant, Kingswood (NYC) – Creative Aussie eats. Feel like king of the W. Vill woods. ● Partnerships & Promotions Manager – Andrew Berman, Bozu (NYC) – Sunken Japanese paradise. Delectable sushi, incredible drinks. ● Interns – Rebecca Hill, Chicago Brauhaus (Chicago) – One of the last of Chicago’s great German restaurants with live oompah bands and an Oktoberfest menu year-round. Delna Joshi, Hudson Terrace (NYC) – Rooftop pleaser for drunk summer afternoons. Brianne Murphy, Beauty Bar (NYC) – Kitschy theme bar serving up mani/drink combos under a row of hair dryers. Elizabeth Pirozzi, Pink Elephant (NYC) – Gangsters, models, and house. Where one goes, the others must follow. Monica Dybuncio, Cha Cha Cha (San Francisco) – The Haight’s never-ending Caribbean party where Santerias and sangria rule. Emily Pflug Presidio, Delfina (San Francisco) – Overly moussed males, technophiles, and high-class hipsters collide in this local fine dining favorite. Lea Abeyta, The Annex (NYC) – Grown-up newcomer from Dark Room boys. Tiswas Saturday, Interpol’s Paul B holding down Wednesday. Joanna Rubinstein, Bar Breton (NYC) – Fleur de Sel’s tastes of Brittany now available in brasserie form. Marie Baginski, East Andrews Cafe & Bar (Atlanta) – Label toters run amok at Buckhead restaurant-bar and pack the place on Thursdays and Fridays. Megan Kunecki, Blender Theater at Gramercy (NYC) -New indie rocker hosting artists you put on your iPod for show while you’re really listening to “Since U Been Gone” again. Jay Kassirer, The Smile (NYC) – Earnest Sewn owners take over abandoned Double Crown space for Med-inspired cafe/boutique. Suhee Eom, Momofuku Ssäm Bar (NYC) – Chef-of-the-minute David Chang fancies up Korean burritos and gets avant-garde after 6pm. Jaime Marie, Sueños (NYC) – Sweet dreams of organic tequila and make-your-own-tacos really can come true! Rana Razavi, Sanctuary (Miami) – Swank rooftop bar and the promise of hanky panky in the pool.

DIGITAL ● Director of Development – Daniel Murphy, Yerba Buena (NYC) – Petite hot zone with wide range of Pan-Latino small plates. ● Lead Architect – Matt Hackett, Beast (Brooklyn) – Small plates and top brunch, come get lost in Prospect Heights. Developer – Bastian Kuberek, Motor City Bar (NYC) – Front like you remember how to drive and these 8 Milers might let you hang. ● Developer – Dan Simon, B.B. King Blues Club & Grill (NYC) ● Designer – Matt Strmiska, Manuel’s (Austin) – Immaculate cleanliness, smart design, and Wine Spectator-designated mole don’t come cheap even for the downtown lunch crowd. ● Developer – Sam Withrow, Pacific Standard (NYC) – Mellow, big-hearted Slope pub keepin’ it pacific. ● Quality Assurance Engineer – Sunde Johnson, Stone Park Café (NYC) – White on white, Williams-Sonoma, Maclarens, fish sandwiches, and burgers. ● Mobile Developer – Otto Toth, Centolire (NYC) – Mangia, mangia, and then ride up and down in the funny glass elevator until the hostess kicks you out.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS ● Bob Hoff, Guys & Dolls (LA) – Sophisticated sexy in West Hollywood. 7 nights a week. ● Ari Horowitz, L’Ecole (NYC) – Get schooled in fine French cuisine at this tasty training center. ● Eric Gertler, SoHo House (NYC) – Members-only decadent den where you may find scruffy English rockers or snaggle-toothed English bankers. Guess which is more likely. ● Joe Landry, Local (LA) – Anything goes, as long as it’s not beef. ● Irwin Lieber, Fishtail by David Burke (NYC) – Fresh seafood in the UES by celeb chef David Burke. ● Dan Pelson, Marea (NYC) – Hopes for a high tide abound at Michael White’s temple to Italian seafood. ● Barry Rubenstein, Shun Lee Café (NYC) – Haute Chinese and dim sum on a glossy, ’80s-fabulous set. ● Jack Sullivan, Blue Ribbon (NYC) – Bromberg bros brasserie takes care of Soho’s after-midnight crowd.
Brian Wilson Tickets Capital One Bank Theatre at Westbury Tickets Westbury Tickets

An Horse Takes Our Pop Quiz

Some things to know about Aussie duo An Horse, who released their debut album Rearrange Beds last month, before we move on to vocalist Kate Cooper’s answers to our Pop Quiz:

● They met in an independent record store in Brisbane, which shut down shortly after the duo started playing shows. They don’t think it was a coincidence. ● Drummer Damon Cox was once kicked by a goat. ● Their name came from something written on a hoodie that vocalist Kate Cooper once received from a friend. She thought “An Horse” was grammatically correct. It wasn’t. ● Kaki King covers one of their songs, and Ben Gibbard requested them as openers when Death Cab for Cutie played dates in Australia. ● For toothpaste, they favor Colgate Total — Kate because she gets it for free from her dentist, Damon because he usually forgets his toothpaste on tour and uses Kate’s. ● They are playing two shows at Mercury Lounge this Saturday the 18th.

When you were in elementary school, what did you want to be when you grew up? I don’t know if I gave it too much thought in primary school. I think I probably wanted to do what my Dad did … but I remember not knowing what a lawyer meant. Do you have any tattoos? Yes I do. The record store Damon and I used to work in also had a tattoo parlor in it. So all my tattoos were done by my friends … which is really nice.

Are you superstitious? No. First album you bought? Michael Jackson, Dangerous. If you could have any super power, what would you choose? I would like to be able to read two pages at once. One page for each eye. People can do that, you know. It’s not world-saving super hero stuff, but it would mean I would get through my pile of “to read” books.

What restaurant would you eat at every day if you could? I would love to eat at any really good Japanese restaurant. How many times a day on average do you think about sex? Hah, as if I would ever tell you that. And as if I have enough time to count.

Have you ever been arrested? Nope.

What’s your guilty pleasure? Pleasure should never be guilty. Do you have a favorite bar in New York? Whenever we get to New York we are usually run off our feet. I do try and get to Five Leaves in Brooklyn. Heath Ledger had something to do with it, so they sell flat whites, which is an Australian type of coffee. They also sell Cooper’s, which is a good Australian beer. Ever been star struck? Yes. Often. Most days.

When you get good news, who’s the first person you tell it to? Usually Damon because it often is something to do with An Horse. If he doesn’t answer, then my I call my sister.

What do you always watch if it’s on TV? I don’t have a TV, but I do watch the news or shark documentaries.

What do you normally sleep in? Love. Where’s the craziest place you’ve had sex? Again, as if. I don’t even know you.

What’s on your computer wallpaper? An amazing picture of a storm blowing over Brisbane City. If you could be any literary character, who would you be? Holden Caulfield. Where do you really want to be right now? Here is just fine, but the beach would be awesome.

What’s the first job you ever had? I was a dishwasher in a local cafe. Favorite Muppets/Sesame Street character? Grover. What’s the best advice you ever got? Just be honest.