The Raveonettes’ Sune Rose Wagner on Batali, Beatrice, & Bono

Sune Rose Wagner, the raven-haired member of Danish rock duo The Raveonettes, was without his blonde songbird Sharon Foo when he called the BlackBook offices for a chat. Having released their last LP Lust, Lust, Lust, over a year ago, Wagner didn’t have much to promote save for a slew of upcoming performances including a show this Friday at Webster Hall. Instead we talked about Jack Kerouac tattoos and Helena Christensen dinner parties. You know, the usual.

When you were in elementary school, what did you want to be when you grow up? A tennis player. I was a semi-professional tennis player for awhile.

Do you have any tattoos? Yea, I have two. I have a picture of Jack Kerouac, and then I have a small little anchor.

Why did you get Jack Kerouac? I used to enjoy his books tremendously, and there was a certain restlessness and energy in his books that I liked when I was younger, and that’s when I decided to travel a lot.

Are you superstitious? I am, yeah.

Can you give me an example? Every time I fly, I have to do this certain motion with my hand, like a cross, otherwise I think the plane is going to fall down.

Have you ever been arrested? No I haven’t been arrested, but I have been interrogated once in connection with some graffiti stuff that we got caught for in Denmark.

If you could have one superpower, what would it be? Teleportation. It would make traveling so much easier. I hate traveling … I can’t stand it. Well, I like driving, I don’t mind taking trips, but I hate flying. I hate going to the airport, I hate everything about it.

Have you ever been starstruck before? I’ve been starstruck many times with many different people. When I met Jay-Z I was pretty starstruck. With Q Tip I was starstruck because I love him … Bono from U2, I was pretty starstruck right there, Julianne Moore, Gwyneth Paltrow.

Where do you tend to meet these people? I met most of them at this little Christmas dinner party that Helena Christensen was throwing. Sharon and I, we went there and it was basically a lot of these people, and it was a pretty surreal experience at first, but after a while it’s not a big deal. You’re just standing in the kitchen with Bono drinking a glass of wine, and he’s just a guy.

What would you always watch that’s on TV if you’re channel surfing and you come across it? I actually don’t have TV. When we’re in hotels and stuff, I’ll watch it, but I decided not to watch it at home because I know that it’s such an easy thing to fall into, especially over here with all these channels. I mean, I miss it sometimes because I like to watch documentaries a lot, and it’s nice to have the news on, but when you have the Internet, you can pretty much do everything online anyway.

So do you spend a lot of time online? Yeah, I probably spend too much time online, like most people do. I should go out a little bit more I think, because I tend to think that the Internet is sort of my eye into the outside world, but I should just go for more walks.

Do you spend a lot of time on Facebook? No, I don’t, and I’m lucky in that way because I know other people spend way too much time on there. I don’t really use it that much, mostly for checking out events. Because there will always be friends DJing. Sometimes I use it for just catching up with people in Denmark, or anywhere else in the world, friends I don’t see that often, all of a sudden they’re online and you just chat with them.

What are some of the places in New York that you like to go out to either party or eat? I have a lot of favorite restaurants here. This town is so good for food. I like Mario Batali’s restaurants a lot, I go there all the time, to Lupa or Casa Mono or Babbo, and I like the French bistro style of eating, so I’ll go to Balthazar. And sometimes I’ll go to a place called Jack’s Luxury Oyster Bar in the East Village; it’s a very nice little place to sit and eat … they make the food right in front of you. There’s a little Spanish place on the corner of where I live called Tía Pol, which is a little tapas bar. They have good wine there.

What is it about Batali’s food that you like? I like the simplicity of it. It’s just really a simple, almost rustic kind of food, and it’s incredibly tasty.

What kind of nightlife do you have in New York? I don’t have that much of a nightlife. I like to go restaurants a lot, and we’re party smokers, so if we go out, we need to find places where we can smoke, and unfortunately there are not a lot of those places left. So we’ll go to a bar called Motor City for instance … they’ll let you smoke there usually. Yesterday we went to Lit. I was DJing at the Glasvegas after party.

And what about the Beatrice Inn? You can smoke in there too. The Beatrice Inn … I go there a lot and you’re right, it’s good for smoking. So I mean, there’s some places you can find, but I don’t really explore a lot of new places, and I don’t go to clubs or anything like that.

New York: Top 10 Tapas Restaurants

1. Alta (Greenwich Village) – Alta, as in “high,” as in “haute,” at this sexy Village tapas spot. 2. Degustation Wine & Tasting Bar (East Village) – Mannered tapas more about multiple changes of silverware than half-gallon pitchers of sangria. Put on a classy costume. 3. Flor de Sol (Tribeca) – Sexy Spanish tavern with the best sangria in the hood.

4. La Nacional (West Village) – Subterranean Spanish haunt hosts the most authentic tapas experience in NYC. 5. Casa Mono (Gramercy) – Man’s man’s tapas. Meat good. Make happy. Grunt. Grunt. 6. Oliva (Lower East Side): Basque home cooking that’s as wonderfully odd and complex as the language itself. Plus best sangria in the hood. 7. Tia Pol (Chelsea) – Basque in the glow of top tapas. Small plates = small waists. No reservations = long waits. 8. Boqueria (Union Square) – Realest Valencian paella in town courtesy of a guy named Seamus. Melting pot and all that. 9. Mercat (Greenwich Village) – Seared Catalonian tapas as solid as the brick, marble, and wood that make up this market-inspired NoHo newcomer. 10. Harbour Drive (Soho) – Spanish seafood in luxe yacht interior evolves into a rockin’ Marbella party boat.

New York: Top 5 Wine Lists below 14th Street

image1. One if by Land, Two if by Sea (West Village) – Best for: Those with hearts streaming out of their eyes, feeling lucky in love. 2. Tia Pol (Chelsea) – Best for: Pals who want to gossip over Spanish wines and tapas. 3. Chikalicious (East Village) – Best for: Those with a sweet tooth — it’s all dessert all the time. There’s even a three-course dessert menu with wine pairings.

4. Azul Bistro (Lower East Side) – Best for: Meat lovers. Steaks, steaks and more steaks. Oh, and red wine. 5. Fresh (Tribeca) – Best for: Fishetarians who like a little wine with their catch of the day.

Jet Blue’s Terminal Gastronomy

One of the most dreaded aspects of flying (aside from Eddie Murphy movies and box-cutters) is having to consume the so-called “food” being served on board. Filling up in the terminal beforehand is a long-practiced strategy for avoiding airplane food, and with new top-of-the-line restaurants opening in Jet Blue’s (which is quickly becoming the H&M of airlines) JFK terminal, this dining option is looking better than ever.

The renovated terminal will include restaurants overseen by essential New York City chefs, including Mark Ladner of Del Posto, Michael Schulson of Izakaya Ten, Riad Nasr and Lee Hanson of Balthazar and Pastis, Alexandra Raij of Tia Pol, and Roberto Santibañez formerly of Rosa Mexicano.

This first-class dining experience is among the latest of the in-airport restaurants that have already taken off. JFK is currently home to Master Chef Todd English’s Bonfire, while “Hell’s Kitchen” villain Gordon Ramsay runs the aptly named restaurant Plane Food in London’s Heathrow airport. Wolfgang Puck is affiliated with a chain of Gourmet Express restaurants located in airports all over the US. Max in Stockholm’s Arlanda Airport has trans-fat-free made-to-order burgers, and the Oneworld lounge in LAX can not only sate a traveler’s hunger with its buffet-style dining, but also includes nine shower suites. Nørrebro Bryghus in Copenhagen Airport is a pre-flight imbibers paradise, serving up handcrafted seasonal beers. Winos can rejoice at the Cibo Bistro and Wine Bar, offering a selection of over thirty wines in airports in Philadelphia, New York, and Washington D.C. While flying is not something most people look forward to, these new options becoming available in airports worldwide are dulling the downsides of air travel.