Sant Ambroeus SoHo Has the Chicest Plates in All NYC

Photos: Courtesy of Sant Ambroeus

The simultaneously compact/packed wall of plates at Sant Ambroeus on Lafayette Street are just the beginning of general manager Alireza Niroomand‘s plan for redecoration. Niroomand has commissioned influencers, fashionistas, artists–all Sant Ambroeus groupies–to partake in a sort of culinary art collective.

You can’t take your eyes off the wall. Where to look? Donald Robertson‘s signature lips, or Brian Atwood‘s gem-adorned fancy plate? And that’s just a small selection. Other contributors include Leandra Medine (The Man Repeller), Deer Dana, and Edward Enninful. Looking will have to suffice because these plates are not for eating off of or taking home. But that’s okay–it just means a couple extra visits to the SoHo hotspot might be in order.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASimon Doonan and Jonathan Adler







Gift to Self: ‘Calories’ Popcorn Jar by Jonathan Adler

This may be a great gift to self for the New Year, perhaps a nice deterrent to any post-holiday sugar indulgences. Designer Jonathan Adler created this adorable “Calories” jar ($38) to fill with your favorite treats. The fact that it comes stocked with Jacques Torres caramel chocolate popcorn will only make you stronger—resist!

Shop the “Calories” popcorn jar here.

Doonan & Adler OK Capes, Boas, Press-On Nails & Xanax

Simon Doonan, the Creative Director of Barney’s New York, is a busy man. But never too busy to give a good quote. Having just finished the uptown destination’s holiday window displays (this year, the windows are all about SNL), Doonan gave a quippy interview to Luxist at the annual Moth Ball, alongside his significant other, Jonathan Adler.

The interviewer started by asking about capes. Specifically, are they still in style. “Capes? Everything is in. That’s the thing, nothing ever goes out of style anymore. All trends concurrently exist. In this room somebody is probably rocking every trend known to mankind,” Doonan said. But, wait, everything? Well according to Doonan and Adler. The former adds, “nothing makes you feel bubbly and vivacious like a feather boa. It’s very glam rock.” To which Adler responded, “I think that everyone should have Lee Press On Nails for every guest.” Also uncovered in the bizarre interview, the one thing Adler never leaves home without: an emergency stash of “xanax, xanax, and xanax.” As for Adler’s other great pleasures in life? Ping-pong and Facebook.

Simon Doonan’s Palatial Gay Fantasia

This week’s edition of the New Yorker takes a look inside the home of Barneys’ inimitable creative director Simon Doonan. Doonan’s Nasty: My Family and Other Glamorous Varmints, was adapted for television by the BBC last fall as a series called Beautiful People, and it recently debuted stateside on the Logo network. Right off the bat, he describes his digs as a “palatial gay fantasia.” The grandiose description, though over the top, isn’t surprising given the fact that Doonan recently married his partner of 14 years, interior designer Jonathan Adler. Not to mention the abode in question is outfitted with garden gnomes, a paisley ping-pong table, and a “burlap bust of Napoleon” in the fireplace.

One of the more outstanding moments captured by the piece: “Adler frequently refers to Doonan as an ‘obese elf,’ even though Doonan weighs in at a hundred and thirty-five pounds of lean white elf meat.” Of his finances post-memoir, Doonan recalls, “‘when the book was optioned, everyone thought I’d start flying to work in a mink-lined helicopter’ … in reality, his compensation was a bit more modest; he wouldn’t say how much he was paid, but allowed that it was ‘better than a poke in the eye with a dirty stick’.” And of his parents’ probable reaction to Beautiful People were they to see it, Doonan says, “my father would probably be appalled. He and my mom got through their very difficult lives by not examining them. They created a milieu that was so chaotic my gayness was small potatoes.” If only there were an accompanying slideshow on The Selby.

One-Day Tour: Intro to New York’s West Village

Stay: A quaint neighborhood calls for an equally quaint hotel. Abingdon Guest House has the vibe of a small-town bed and breakfast — it’s not for everyone, but its location is ideal for the atypical visitor.

10 a.m. Regular patrons of ‘ino appreciate the dim, cozy bar for an evening glass of wine, but it’s also a perfect breakfast destination. Sit by the front window, read your paper, and order the famous truffled egg toast with a strong shot of espresso.

11 a.m. Set off on a walking tour. Stroll along Bleecker Street for a taste of the neighborhood ‘s eclectic vibe — Marc Jacobs boutiques (there are three of them), record shops, and antique dealers all peacefully coexist. Stop in at Cynthia Rowley for quirky tailored skirts and sweaters. Later, find your way onto Barrow and Morton for picturesque, tree-lined streets and brownstones.

1:30 p.m. For lunch with pretty scenery, head to neighborhood newcomer Kingswood. Aussie-inflected fare, like the Bronte burger, is served within view of blooming magnolias at the nearby Jefferson Market Garden. During the winter months, the interior is enough to keep the eyes pleased — butterflies and an ostentatious taxidermy peacock decorate the space. Or, for a local favorite, try Pearl Oyster Bar. Established by Rebecca Charles in 1997, it’s widely considered the best New England-style seafood shack in town. Sit at the counter for a skate sandwich and crisp glass of white wine.

3 p.m.. Move on over to Greenwich Avenue and get all of your shopping done on one street. Stop at the Christian Louboutin Boutique for a pair of decadent, bejeweled shoes, or Otte, for the latest from Loeffler Randall and 3.1. Phillip Lim. Jonathan Adler for whimsical home decor items like a playful giraffe-shaped sconce or ceramic squirrel ringbox. Finally, pop into travel shop Flight001 for the newest carry-on by Orla Kiely — you’ll need it to lug home all of your loot.

5 p.m. Skip the dreadful line at Magnolia and have sweets with a clean, green conscience. City Bakery’s Maury Rubin is also the owner of Birdbath — an organic bakeshop that‘s sustainable in every way, from its interior (the walls are made of wheat) to its food (organic and local, naturally). Portions are enormous, so share a chewy gingerbread cookie; or, if you’re vegan, go for the banana sesame agave cake.

5:30 p.m. Sports enthusiasts should check out the West 4th Street court, otherwise known as "The Cage", for some amateur basketball. Players can get aggro in such close confines — it just makes the games all the more interesting.

7 p.m. Have dinner at Mas, where acclaimed chef Galen Zamarra changes the menu daily based on what’s in season. Whatever is on the menu du jour is likely to be exquisite, as is the farmhouse meets townhouse vibe of the place.

9 p.m.. For something divey minus the stench of beer and puke, grab a brew after dinner at the Rusty Knot. The nautical-themed bar is a curious juxtaposition of high and low: an evening of 99-cent cans and tiki drinks command a surly doorman and long wait times, while a borderline trashy bar menu (pretzels, pigs in blankets) is cooked up by a talented, pedigreed chef.

Midnight Rev up your evening at the ultra-exclusive Socialista. Its breezy, tropical décor and sexy cocktail menu successfully evokes an evening in Havana. But be warned: Getting in can be a crapshoot.

Late Night Cap off your night with a late visit to Beatrice Inn, the speakeasy cool spot that keeps downtowners buzzing.