31 March 2010

Marie Hochhaus Photography

German photographer Marie Hochhaus exposes the lady in her little girl subjects. View more at her website.

29 March 2010

Rainbow in Your Hand

This brilliant flip book creates a 3-D rainbow in your hands.

Thanks Max1e6!

28 March 2010

Key Bag

a dinner at Docks

We stepped into Docks in Midtown yesterday evening- with the raw bar and wine on the agenda. Though it was nearly 10:00pm, we were warmly greeted and the dining room was buzzing. After garnering a few seats at the bar, we selected a bottle of Rosa Regale from Banfi, Italy. The sparkling rose poured frothy rather than bubbly and was a bit on the sweet side- a detail that proved excellent in contrast to oyster craving.

With a quick glance of the menu, we requested a platter of chef's pick oysters in the half-shell. The server walked a through the selections from British Columbia, Long Island and Prince Edward Island. The plump and slippery oysters came served with the expected Tabasco, fresh horseradish, cocktail sauce and lemon wedges. The West Coast varieties were a bit overwhelming in their size and the Long Island fell a part- but the Prince Edward Island were spot on. The plate certainly satisfied, but the spot-on service is the detail that pushes Docks beyond other raw bars in Midtown. The bar keep was quite attentive, without being overbearing. She also exhibited knowledge, care and a down-to Earth demeanor.

Images: from my iPhone

26 March 2010

Wafels and Dinges

Information leaked that the Wafels and Dinges truck (which only sets up shop in Midtown on Thursdays) was serving free waffles in the spirit of International Waffle Day. The catch? There's usually a catch. You had to be wearing yellow. I teamed up with a colleague to snag a few tee's from the company soccer team and trotted over to 46th & 6th Avenue. We bonded with the folks in line, one girl admitted, "I didn't mean to wear yellow today, and I feel like it was fate. I was supposed to have free waffles today," and the childish grin behind us, "I wasn't wearing yellow, so I hope this works," as he pressed post-it notes on his chest.

I selected the Brussels Wafel (light and crispy) with strawberries and he chose Liege (chewy and soft) with spekuloos. Both plates were quite excellent and reminded me that: I need a waffle maker. My birthday is coming up next week...hint hint nudge nudge wink wink....

25 March 2010

Delicious by Mathieu Lehanneur

French Designer Mathieu Lehanneur has designed a set of quilted metal storage boxes to be presented at the Tools Galerie a' Paris. Labeled Delicious, the boxes are crafted from the metal often used to make hot dog carts. I'd love a set in my apartment.

23 March 2010

Oh My.

Fell in love at Auburn & Ivory.

(listen, with earphones)

a lunch at Naniwa of Japan

We settled into a Naniwa of Japan after the lunch crowd had dispersed. The servers seemed a bit ruffled over our 2:30pm arrival, but agreed to seat us. The interior offered a subtle elegance meshed with function. I imagine the tight space would be a bit overwhelming for some during peak hours.

We decided to share a few items on the menu: Sashimi Deluxe platter with Miso soup and Yakitori. The sashimi came in a generous portion and quite fresh. I would have preferred the fish to be cut a little thinner, but the variety of five types of fish including Yellowtail garnished with thinly chopped scallions and tuna with marinated seaweed- was quite lovely. The Yakitori (BBQ chicken on skewers) impressed me with the negamaki style scallion addition and awkward potato salad/strawberry decor.

The service tapered off towards the end--and we were basically asked to leave-- our server was clocking off. A bit awkward as we were only there for 25 minutes, but I suppose few linger at lunch in Midtown during the week.

Images: from my iPhone

19 March 2010

A House Made of Two by Akio

Japanese architect Akio Nakasa has completed his A House Made of Two project in Kanagawa, Japan. The design features two side-by-side homes meant for a single family.

View more at Dezeen.

Photographs are by Toshiyuki Yano/Nacasa & Partners.

Julian Hibbard Photography

English photographer Julian Hibbard has an impressive client portfolio including Wallpaper, Elle and Popular Mechanics. After studying at Kingston University in London, he assisted German advertising photographer Andreas Heumann.

I'm drawn to the story-telling his images do through their enigmatic quality. He's had exhibitions in Los Angeles, Santiago, London and Scotland.

Dog Stache

Pilgrim's birthday is April 5th. The Dog Stache chew toy is at the top of his list! You can buy one here!

Cable Clips Wire Blooms

I'm currently trouble-shooting how to make visible wires more pleasant to look at. These nail-in clips make attaching wires to the wall a creative task, and make the wires more aesthetically pleasing! You may purchase them here!

17 March 2010

Vertical Gardens

Florist Flora Grubb creates vertical succulent gardens, and she sells kits in her San Francisco shop. Wouldn't they be perfect in your Manhattan-sized apartment?

16 March 2010

Jason Horowitz Photography

New York photographer Jason Horowitz's created his Drag series with close up techniques to capture his large scale images of drag queens. Garish and a bit edgy, I would love to check out one of his gallery appearances.

A Collection a Day

Cool blog alert! A Collection a day is a dazzling year-long project from artist/illustrator Lisa Congdon. Every day, for exactly one year (Jan 1 2010 — Dec 31 2010), Congdon is photographing, painting or drawing a collection.

13 March 2010

a dinner at Vintage Irving

The rain was still light when we settled in at Vintage Irving. The cozy spot focuses on wine and small plates designed by Chef Jason Bunin. We ordered a few glasses of red from our flustered server- me the Nero d'Avola from Sicily and my partner to Sangiovese Trappollini. The Nero begs to be served with food with its dominate notes of fig.

For our shared small plates, we selected the Truffle Chicken Meatballs with thyme scented sherry wine sauce, Grilled Octopus with garlic and herbed asparagus with lemon oil and lemon juice and the Beets with roasted asiago, arugula and rosemary vinaigrette.

The meatballs were moister than I expected for a chicken base- and improved with each bite, given that the sherry wine sauce cajoled you to generously roll and soak them. The octopus came in an impressive presentation with two large tentacles flowing over the asparagus and unexpected pico de gallo. More impressively, the protein came in a perfect marriage of tender and firm, with light hints of the grill. The beets pulled the meal together: chopped and molded into a neat cylinder resting on a bed of arugula- the rosemary didn't dominate the dish.

Another small detail I enjoyed- a carafe of water with two small glasses. It's pleasant to have minimal (and yet balanced) interruptions from the servers. I will certainly return. Also recommend is the attached Side Bar.

Image: Vintage Irving Official

Dos Toros

My search is over. I've been led to amazing tacos in Manhattan. Situated in Union Square, this tiny venue is clad in reclaimed wood interiors with red and black accented walls. It came as no surprise that Dos Toros sprouted from two brothers from San Francisco- the fresh ingredients come overstuffed and distinctly West Coast in flavor. I chose the pork carnitas taco, my fellow diner the chicken- explaining that it's best to order the steak only when it comes straight from the grill. We requested soft, rather than crunchy with added guacamole, verde sauce and the usual melted cheese and ripe chopped tomatoes.

The carnitas came moist, slow roasted and generously stuffed in the homemade tortilla. One taco is enough. We shared a
Boylan's Root beer. I would have to say: worth the trek through the torrential rain this afternoon- and even better than the Avatar movie!

Serious Eats NY

12 March 2010

Blue Note

My driver shoved through the mess of cabs outside Blue Note-- many empty--waiting-- for live jazz buffs to shuffle out of the West Village venue. I entered to be immediately interrogated by a bouncer, in what appeared to be his grandfather's hand-me down-suit, "You meeting someone or you have a reservation?" I ensured him my company was at the bar, to which he escorted me to the tiny space that had be procured for us in the standing room.

I sipped Maker's on the rocks (always bourbon with jazz) and took in the crammed tables, 80's style geometric mirrors to the back and doorman shhhhing patrons who dared above a modest whisper. I suggest venturing upstairs to use the loo, where cases of kitschy souvenirs will stir up nostalgia of roller skating rinks from childhood.

The club is noted for outrageous cover and policies (you pay a steep admission per set), New York Magazine writer Peter Landau explains:

The sole reason to endure this pseudo high-class torture is the Blue Note's exclusive booking practices: Certain artists, like John Coltrane's powerhouse drummer, the late Elvin Jones, wouldn't play anywhere else within city limits. At least they pay the industry's workhorses well.

I would suggest having an evening at Blue Note, then moving on to other venues such as Terra Blues where delicious Delta style blues is cover free- given that you're securing your table by ordering drinks

Images: NYMAG