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Gather: Café Henrie

 

More than just a café André Saraiva’s new restaurant on Lower East Side is a gathering place for creativity. With ease Café Henrie brings people together for morning coffee and light bites. Here you might run into a couple of friends and end up chatting for hours over chef Camille Becerra’s vibrant, comforting yet good-for-you additions to the menu. While sometimes difficult to avoid the morning hustle, Café Henrie takes the Parisian approach to mornings, musing for hours, enjoying coffee over quality food with good company. In a city known for its fast pace and endless hustle, it’s a quite welcome relief to find a corner to slow down and connect to the energy that drew us here in the first place.


Pegboard walls and pops of cerulean, pink and mint set the tone for the gallery feel of the creative hub. Saraiva enlists his favorite artists such as Petra Collins, Tom Sachs and rotating local artists to help with the decor.

Camille Becerra can be credited for the surge of photos at the new spot with her colorful presentation of “healthful, unfussy New American”. If you are popping in for lunch, we suggest the Dragon Bowl Camille’s take on a classic macrobiotic meal. Her sauces are what keep us coming back for more. The artful direction of the beet tahini puree and carrot harissa yogurt are masterful in design and taste.


Now extending their menu to dinner (with the exception of Monday + Tuesday nights), we can’t wait to hang out at Café Henrie and eat all day. Camille, the beautiful and brilliant chef of the cool downtown hang shared with us her upcoming projects as well as how she is bringing healthier eating more into a daily focus.

 
 

When entertaining friends at home, what type of dish is the most satisfying for an intimate meal?

I like making a beautiful salad, a one pot main like; paella, posole or tagine. The sharing of one meal has a unifying quality for guests and it also allows time to make a dessert. A homemade dessert is always key for me unless there's a baker on the guest list (which usually makes them very happy to participate), otherwise I like guests to come stress-free...I batch out a welcoming cocktail and have guests bring wine (but definitely have wine at home on reserve), people love to hang and sit, talk for hours and sip wine. Always an amaro, I love Luxardo and a sipping tequila, always Casa Dragones.

Which ingredients do you feel are the most transformative?

Nigella seed and rose.

How would you say travel has influenced your career and style?

It opens my creativity, I'm very influenced by traditions from foreign lands.

 
 

Living in New York is fast paced and can be demanding. Where is your special place to rejuvenate and find inspiration?

Very early mornings at the market. Spa’s like Great Jones and Aire. Zen meditations at local zendos.

We love everything about your current residency at Cafe Henrie. Can you describe what a perfect day off would entail when you aren’t at the restaurant?

I love a day spent entirely at home, unfortunately months go by without this special treat.

Using food as energy and a sustainable way to get through the day is important in a bustling city. Is this part of your philosophy on the menu behind Café Henrie? How do you incorporate this into your day to day?

The lunch menu at Cafe Henrie is all about eating for health and sustenance. I'm very much about eating a big meal for lunch and light bites for dinner.

 
 

Where do you like to go for a bite to eat, a nice cocktail, coffee or tea?

I love Wildair, it's in my neighborhood, and fits my ideal meal of drinking great wine, sharing a few different dishes with friends, then walking home to digest all the goodness.

We heard you are preparing for a pop up in Paris, as well as working on a book! Can you share what’s next for you?

My friend and owner of Cafe Henrie, Andre Saraiva also owns two great hotels in Paris, Hotel Amour and Grand Hotel Amour, both really special places. We’ll be taking the Cafe Henrie lunch menu to Grand Hotel Amour for the month of June.  

As for the book, I'm currently in development, the book is about food and cooking culture– things that inspire me to cook and create. It’s more about inciting one to cook and learn to cook through visual stories.

 

Visit Camille Becerra's Website / Insta 

Visit Café Henrie's Website / Insta


 

Words by Nicole Steriovski / Photography by Jenna Saraco

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Gather: Hartwood

Tulum, Mexico

 

If you’ve had any thoughts about visiting Tulum you may of heard of a little restaurant called Hartwood. Among the various reports we are happy to confirm Hartwood lives up to and exceeds all expectations.

The smoky and delicious scent of wood burning greeted us as we arrived at the open air 40 seat restaurant. We were lucky enough to nab a coveted seat inside Hartwood during our stay. Being in the moment was a foundation the restaurant was built on and it was felt in the air from our fellow patrons to the easy-going, friendly staff.

Chef and proprietor, Eric Werner, appears in a billowing haze of smoke in the outdoor open kitchen of your dreams. He is dedicated to his role as chef, fisherman and local business owner. He and his wife Mya Henry have built an culinary institution that has also helped revitalize a small town in Mexico.

Every detail of your meal is thoughtfully harvested in the Yucatán. The fish is freshly caught, juice made daily and meat is delivered by taxi from local butchers. The menu changes daily based on the sea and land offerings. We were recommended the grilled octopus and were mesmerized by how the seafood just melted in our mouths. Hearty vegetable sides such as the heart-shaped beets were expertly prepared and like no beet we’ve encountered before. Nestled between tropical overgrowth Hartwood is a magical travel destination that made us feel right at home on the uneven jungle road in the heart of Tulum.

 

Visit Hartwood’s website / Insta


 
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Malibu Farm 

Malibu, CA

 
 

Nestled amongst Malibu's picturesque coastline, Malibu Farm is a beautiful cafe and restaurant serving up delicious, locally sourced food.  We came upon Malibu Farm at the end of our travels in California, and wished we had known earlier! Everything about this place is spot on. From the location, to the ambiance and then let's not forget about the food (so fresh!), everything was pretty much perfect. 

Owner Helene Henderson started Malibu Farm out of her home a few years ago by offering cooking classes and farm dinners right in her backyard. Her attention to organic and emphasis on only using real foods is part of what makes this place special. With each dish you can really taste the ingredients and can trust that what you're getting is fresh, and grown with purpose.  

With warmer weather slowly settling in, we've been thinking of our time spent at the cafe, and wishing we were still there slowly sipping our coffees and taking in the ocean scenes. We can't wait to be back to spend more time getting to know Helene and this wonderful haven she has created. If we were locals, we know this would be our happy place. 

 
 

Background and upbringing play such an important role in defining our careers. Would you please share some of your most significant memories? 

I think when it comes to food memories especially, it is usually the simplest things that stand out the most. The best food memories bring you back to a time and place. In Sweden where I grew up, potatoes were a big deal. We eagerly awaited the first harvest every year, and those spring potatoes were always treated like treasures. They were simply served with just butter and salt but I can still close my eyes, and remember the taste of those potatoes. That memory brings me right back to that time when I am still a little girl, picking potatoes in a field with my grandmother. Which is probably one of the reasons I still obsess about farming, growing my own produce and harvesting. 

 

Travel is something that we find imperative to quality of life, even if it’s right in our backyard. Is there anywhere that you’ve visited recently near or far that stands out?

I went to Iceland not long ago where we visited several farms and it was super interesting to see how they grow a lot of produce hydroponically in greenhouses there. I was also recently in Lanai, one of the islands in Hawaii and interestingly enough, Lanai is considering growing their produce hydroponically in greenhouses as well, not because of the weather, but because so much of the soil is polluted from the old pineapple plantations.

 
 

What kinds of food do you enjoy preparing when entertaining?  

I like to select a menu that does not keep me cooking and cleaning throughout the night, so something simple with a lot of room temperature dishes, which allows me to interact with guests.

 
 

It’s obvious that freshness and quality of ingredients are something that are high on the list of priorities for you. Who are some local purveyors that you’re currently excited about? 

When I first started I wanted to use only produce from my own backyard. As I have expanded and our volume has increased, my own yard obviously doesn't produce enough, and getting Malibu local produce is definitely getting harder to source because of the quantities we need. That said, I do always get super excited to receive produce from Larry Thorne, a Malibu farmer who grows on a larger scale locally. He drops whatever he is growing that is ripe and it's always exciting to receive his deliveries.

 

Where do you like to go for a moment of peace and tranquility? 

I am from the north of Sweden, and grew up surrounded by the forest which is definitely my happy place of peace. There is not much forest in Malibu but I love big open spaces with no people where I can go for a run or a hike to clear my mind. 

 
 

Can you share more on your path to opening Malibu Farm Pier Cafe/Malibu Farm Restaurant?

I had been in catering and private events for a long time. My Malibu Farm journey started out with cooking classes out of my home, to farm dinners in my backyard. Before I knew it I was basically running an underground restaurant out of my home. Eventually the city of Malibu started to crack down on my dinners and I was forced to look for alternate locations.  We did a few dinners on other farms throughout Malibu, and then stumbled upon a short term pop up lease opportunity on the pier. When I first opened the cafe, it was just me, and a small four person staff. The cafe was only open for breakfast and lunch, and I still held a full time private chef job in Los Angeles. Against all odds it took off, the cafe went from pop up to a longer term lease, and after three years, we had an opportunity to expand on the pier to also include the Malibu Farm restaurant and bar. Many days I still look around in surprise that I actually operate two real restaurants. 

 

VISIT MALIBU FARM'S WEBSITE / INSTA


Words by Allison Ritchie / Photos by Jenna Saraco

 
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Maman

NYC

 

What a welcome relief it is to discover a refuge away from the bustle and noise of a big city. It’s especially pleasant when that hideaway serves espresso, pastries and bread! Maman is the gracious bakery and café to come to our rescue during these long, cold winter months.

Owners Elisa Marshall and Benjamin Sormonte focus their dishes on family-inspired recipes from the south of France and North America. The warmth and enthusiasm found at Maman is spilling over in every moment of your time spent  in the café. Truly an extension of your home, one feels comfortable and embraced with the food, drinks and atmosphere served here. Maman’s new location in TriBeCa is every bit as cordial as the beloved spot in SoHo. As a larger space, Maman TriBeCa  offers breakfast, lunch and dinner menus, as well as  welcomes private events.


With a zest for interior design and a history in event planning, Elisa is your new best friend who will effortlessly guide you through preparing for any occasion. From the hand-printed wallpaper to the personal touches of family photos (one of our favorite details of Maman!) we love that we whenever we visit the city we can steal a moment to ourselves in this Manhattan haven.

 
 

Background and upbringing play such an important role in our callings. Please share any of your most significant memories.

I think my inspiration draws from my parents - they type of people the are and the type of people they taught me to be. My mom is an incredible women. Beautiful, creative, detail oriented and the most positive person I know. She always pushed me to see the bright side of things, follow my passion and encouraged creativity in me. My favorite memories with her would be in the kitchen attached to her hip baking or hours of arts and crafts after school - creating & making anything and everything together. My father is a very creative entrepreneur. Always coming up with new ideas & inventions, and always encouraged me to work for myself and build my own future. At a young age we were planning and 'running' businesses together. From lemonade stands and bake sales on the street corner at the age of 6 to having a pretty big ebay business by 12 my father always guided me and instilled the entrepreneurial spirit in me encouraging me to build my own path.

 

What kind of foods do you like to make when cooking for friends and family?

I love themes - from cooking to setting the table. Regular dinner parties are boring. From mexican night to using only selected ingredients, the more themed and focused\you can make your meal the more fun it is to prepare (and eat) regular cooking to me is boring - anyone can do that any night.

 
 

New York can become a bit of an energy drain at times. Do you have a quiet place you can retreat to where you re-energize?

Our home. We spend so much time around people all day and between our two locations that our home is my fav place to relax and unwind. It is relaxing, quiet and beautiful. A small cozy space filled with all the things (and people) I love!

 

Separating work life from personal life can be difficult. Have you set any limits for yourself?

Yes - but we don't tend to stick to them.;)  I try to make an effort to take at least one day off a week to relax and to do something personal and one night off for Ben and myself to enjoy an evening together.

 

Travel is something we know is imperative to quality of life. What’s on your “to visit” list this year?

I am excited to explore upstate New York and to go hop around to small little towns staying in old bed and breakfasts and antiquing.

 
 

Is there anywhere you’ve visited locally recently that stands out?

We just came back from a wonderful food tour of LA. We took 5 days off a few months back and had a nice break exploring the city and getting some much needed rest and inspiration. One of my fav spots and days would have to have been our first day we arrived and we went on a beautiful drive along the coast and to visit malibu farms. Such a beautiful and serene contrast to the craziness of our NYC lives!

 
 

Can you share more about your path to opening Maman?

It was a long and fun road to get to Maman but exciting to see how all our past adventures, careers and passions brought us together and where we are today. Long story short, I was working a 9 to 5 job in fashion, planning weddings and events in evenings and weekends and between that has a catering company on the side  - I loved too much & enjoyed doing it all so it was hard to narrow my career to focus on one thing. Without being able to find a job that could fulfill all my needs I created one - a beautiful space merging my love for design, food, coffee & events and all with the person I love.

 

What is something you use daily that you can’t live without?

Coffee - and I am so lucky I have an endless supply of it (and in pretty cups!)

 

Visit Maman’s website // insta


 
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Citrus + Bloom

A Valentine's Day Gathering

 

To celebrate the upcoming Holiday, we decided to have our girlfriends over for a little Valentine's Day get together.  This time around, we decided to center it around something that's pretty and sugary sweet.  Read on below to see our idea for a fun and easy gathering to show your best gals how much you love 'em. 

 
 

First, we started with started with the perfect confection. Lael Cakes is a very reliable source for just that. These pretty little cakes (not to mention are also vegan and gluten free) are going to make for a wonderful take home treat for our best buds. Since flowers go hand in hand with Valentine’s Day, we decided to use the real thing  to doll up the cakes. Just a few small buds and maybe a sprig of green or two as a garnish and you’ve  got a beautiful and easy presentation.

 
 

Along with the perfect treat, you can’t say Valentine’s Day without having flowers in the mix! We fell head over heels for a citrus and pink color palette for our blooms inspired by floral artist Nicolette Camille. The combination of the pale and soft pink tones with subtle pops of oranges and yellows created the ideal swoony setting.

 
 

The velvet trim added a playful element to the table, as well as adorning our take-away boxes for the cakes. We are really crushing on these guys right now!

 
 

Once each cake is finished, simply place it inside its box and wrap up with a single velvet ribbon once around horizontally. Finish it off with a bow, thread  a stem straight through for a little added festive touch and send your friends off with something just as lovely and sweet as they are. 

Visit Lael Cakes website // insta

 

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Friends-Giving

Dishes for friends at thanksgiving

 

We are firm believers in Friendsgiving over here at Local Creative. When moving to a new city like New York, the special people you are surrounded by become your family away from home. Whether you are heading home for the holidays or staying local there is nothing like putting together a festive Thanksgiving celebration for your friends.

With memories of our grandmothers and mothers recipes that remind us of home, we were moved by Mediterranean flavors and experimented with with some exciting, less traditional flavor profiles for these featured plates. The season is here for eating and these will surely satisfy hungry holiday guests.

For plating we drew from the earthy tones and minimalist shapes created by ceramists Clair Catillaz of Clam Lab. We have long been admirers of Clair’s collection of ceramic objects and it was a pleasure to collaborate with this incredibly skilled clay-slinging lady. The lustworthy ceramics of Clam Lab lend to a delectable palette we used to share our selects of dishes to bring to your own Friendsgiving this year.

Visit Clam Lab’s website // insta

 
 

Recipe #1: Roasted Squash, Radicchio & Za'atar Dressed with Spiced Yogurt Tahini

Gourds are a gorgeous additions to your Thanksgiving table baked or on display. For this recipe we slow roasted squash (we chose acorn for its pretty shape, and delicate texture) complemented by radicchio which adds  bold color and bitter bite to the sweetness of the squash. Za’atar just makes everything better so we suggest generously seasoning your dish with this Mediterranean spice after coming out of the oven. Finally, dress with the spicy yogurt sauce. Pull these ingredients together and you have a plate that is full of flavor, texture, and easy to make, transport and impress!

Inspired by Yotam Ottolenghi's Roasted Butternut Squash Recipe 

You'll need: 1 acorn squash, 1 radicchio, olive oil, salt, pepper, lemon, garlic, za'atar, tahini, greek style yogurt, harissa, water

To prepare: Slice the squash and radicchio, dress with olive oil ( a few tablespoons,) salt and pepper. Roast at 400˚F for 40 minutes, until the squash starts to brown. Meanwhile, mix a few tablespoons of tahini with about a quarter cup of greek yogurt, one clove of minced garlic, salt, pepper, and lemon juice (about two tablespoons.) Blend until smooth, add water until you get a smooth honey-like consistency, and a touch of harissa at the end for a little spice!

 
 

Recipe #2: Roasted Crispy Cauliflower with Cilantro & Lemon Zest

This recipe takes an often passed over veggie (cauliflower) and makes it a dinner centerpiece (besides the Turkey that is). Season your cauliflower with salt, pepper, lemon zest, and garlic, coat in a thin layer of breadcrumbs and you’re ready to roast. This cauliflower game changer is a variation of a recipe passed on from Jenna’s grandmother. Everyone loves this dish, it’s simple to make, and super seasonal this time of year. You can actually enjoy this dish for dinners throughout the year, no need to wait until Friendsgiving. For presentation sprinkle with freshly chopped cilantro to add color, and brightness to each bite. You can even use the tahini yogurt sauce on this one too!

You'll need: 1 head of cauliflower, bread crumbs, olive oil, salt, pepper, lemon, garlic, cilantro

To prepare: Cut your cauliflower into small florets, and dress generously with olive oil to coat. Season your bread crumbs with salt, pepper and garlic, and toss with the cauliflower for a light and crispy coating. Bake at 400˚F for 30-40 minutes, flip them over about halfway through so each side gets crispy and browned. Once they're out of the oven, sprinkle with lemon zest, chopped cilantro and serve. 

 
 

Dessert: Chocolate Meringue

You really can’t go wrong with a chocolate finale and Thanksgiving is no exception for this rule. This chocolate meringue recipe is fluffy whipped, perfection, although, we can’t take the credit. While searching for the perfectly light bite at the end of a heavy Thanksgiving meal, we turned to Mimi Thorisson’s cookbook, A Kitchen in France.  This slightly chewy in the middle meringue, (a personal preference) is just right. Dust with cocoa powder for the finishing touches over your dessert, and serve.

When it comes to baking we all know you have got to follow the recipe! Head over to Mimi's gorgeous blog to see the step by step..you'll want to do as she says! But a tip from us, the most important part of baking meringue is the cooling process! Make sure it cools VERY SLOW. Leave it in the oven with the door open, before taking them out to cool completely ; )

 

 
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The Pines

Gowanus, Brooklyn

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When it comes to dining out we are always in pursuit of a spot that knows our wants and needs. Firstly, the said spot must have good food (because why settle for bad food?) secondly, good vibes and finally but not lastly good service. The Pines in Gowanus goes above and beyond excelling at all three of our needs. 

We have a soft spot for South Brooklyn and are excited by the creative energy bustling from this former industrial neighborhood. The Pines is an intimate 40 seat, modern American dining experience that refuses to disappoint. Executive Chef John Poiarkoff is committed to a focus of seasonal and house-made ingredients for all of his dishes. The quality of produce and meats is intentional and well-researched, he is completely invested in sourcing the highest quality farm fresh ingredients (you know we are all about supporting local and our support is exponential when it comes to what’s on our plate).

Chef John’s fresh take on seasonal ingredients is both inspiring and intellectual. Classic dishes like The Fluke Tartare, Charred Radicchio and Agnolotti have complex, flavor profiles that strikes a curiosity for a what’s next on the menu mentality.

If the menu offerings were not incentive enough for a visit, The Pines wine and cocktail program is definitely a must- try in Brooklyn. The Pines is one of the only restaurants in the country to offer natural wines (we highly recommend the Gamay). Our Piedmont Sour perfectly complimented our Fluke Tartare in color and was exceptional in taste. We could go on about our love for this spot but we will let you hear the facts from Chef John himself. Keep reading for more about a delicious dinner series at sister restaurant Willow and how John respects his veggies and turns them into a main act.

Visit The Pines website / insta

 
 

Location.

284 3rd Ave, Brooklyn

How would you describe your menu?

Creative, market-driven, New American

Sourcing the highest quality meats and vegetables seems to be your thing. Who are some local purveyors that excite you?

  • Beef - Happy Valley Meats. They're based in Brooklyn and source whole beef from small farmers in central PA.
  • Veg - Star Route Farms, Lucky Dog Organic. Both are great farms in the Catskills.
 
 

Perfect meal for a dinner for two:

Cocktails to start, followed by a bottle of natural wine to go with foie gras cookies, fluke tartare, a vegetable dish or two, a pasta, duck breast (if it's on the menu. we only get 6 ducks per week and age them for 14 days before we serve them), then chocolate cake and an amaro. 

 

So into your philosophy of respecting your vegetables. Tell us more about the thought behind your market fresh menu options.

We treat vegetables with just as much respect as meat and fish. Vegetables that come from a good farm where they are cared for and treated well, have much more flavor than those that are mass produced, just like chicken, beef, etc. We prepare vegetables in many ways, based on their flavor, density, application, etc. Whether they're roasted, charred, pickled, fermented, cooked sous vide, or served raw, the idea is always to bring out the natural flavor of each vegetable.

 

Where do you eat when you're not having family meals at The Pines?

As a chef, it's hard to dine out without being disappointed. There are only a handful of restaurants that I frequent. In Brooklyn, I love Vinegar Hill House (my brother is the chef), Franny's, and Sushi Katsuei. Those are my go-to places. In Manhattan, any USHG restaurant is a safe bet. I have a long list of restaurants that I'd like to try, but not enough time away from the restaurant to do so. 

 
 

The blade steak is calling our name for our next visit. Can you share more about your aging process for your meats?

Some cuts, we age on the bone for an extended period of time. Happy Valley Meats ages their whole sides of beef for 2 weeks before they are shipped to us. When our ribeyes and strip loins arrive, we place them on racks in front of the fan in our back walk-in. We have a dehumidifier in there that controls the moisture in the room. We age our beef anywhere from 45-90 days. This is after the initial 2 week hang, so we're looking at over 100 days on some of the beef we serve. The aging process intensifies the flavor of the beef and naturally tenderizes it. The blade steak actually isn't aged as long, as it's a muscle within the shoulder that is cut off the bone before we get it. To add extra flavor, we cook the blade steaks sous vide with rendered fat from our aged beef.

 

Looking forward to visiting your sister restaurants Willow in Bed-Stuy and Tamarack at Smorgasborg. The three locations seem to really compliment one another, what’s your favorite thing to eat/drink at each?

That's a hard question! Hopefully everything is great. At The Pines, we have a great, non-traditional pasta program that people love. I really like our tilefish dish right now. We pan roast the fish with the scales on and they puff up and get super crispy. It's served in a brown butter dashi broth with several kinds of autumn squash in different applications, as well as some mushrooms and a squeeze of lemon. I love the roasted cauliflower at Willow, with pumpkin romesco. At Tamarack, I'm partial to the kielbasa sandwich. It's something I grew up with and it takes me back to my childhood every time I have it.

 

We are officially in the holiday stretch! What do you all have planned for the upcoming season at your restaurants?

A lot! We're doing tasting menus for New Year's Eve at both restaurants. The Pines will be a long menu for $125 per person and Willow will offer a 7-course vegetable-forward sharing menu for only $65 per person. We're also starting a Sous Chef Supper Series at Willow. Starting this week, My sous chefs will each prepare a 5-course menu for a set price each Monday. Neel is going first, preparing Indian food with a farm-to-table philosophy... New Indian-American. 

 

 
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Bon Appetit x Ralph Lauren Paint

The Perfect Palate

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Storytelling is a word that often strikes a very verbal connotation. The reality is storytelling has grown to stretch a span of mediums. Once a topic that was limited to text is now open to visual exploration through photography and video. As storytellers we often immerse ourselves into the life of our subjects. See the world as they do for a moment.

 
 

Last week we were thrilled to host a select group of creatives at the Bon Appétit Test Kitchen at One World Trade experience their versions of the “Perfect Palate” story.  “The Perfect Palate” was an exciting collaboration between Local Creative, Bon Appétit and Ralph Lauren Paint where we found ourselves in the position to ask a group we greatly admire to share their creative visions with us.  

 
 

Our first instinct when studying Ralph Lauren’s luxe and classic paint offerings was to pull together seasonal monochromatic vignettes inspired by the gorgeous colorings. Pasha Pink, Istanbul and Chamois made an delicous foundation for layering dishes such as burnt orange and fennel shrimp, mini sweet potato and ginger soups and a simple pear toast. Props according to color were available for guests to experiment, style and photograph in a way that was natural to them. Taylor Patterson of Fox Fodder Farm effortlessly matched our color palette with awe-inspiring florals that perfectly complimented the selected paints.

 
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Through this gathering we were able to observe how each creative interacts with our proposed tools to masterfully get just the right shot. It all comes down to perspective with the play of color, food, florals and photography. Even though each guest had access to the same materials, the photos revealed later on Instagram were so unique to each gifted individual. This may very obviously be what’s so addicting about social media, a peek of the world through the lens of another. We were incredibly lucky to share the afternoon with such a brilliant group and get a behind the scenes of creating “The Perfect Palate.”

 

Ralph Lauren paints is available at Home Depot.


 
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Local Creative x BEST

Kokomo, NY

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Vinegar Hill House

brooklyn ,ny

 

Vinegar Hill House has been an eating destination constantly on our mind. When Jean Adamson, the lovely owner, invited us to visit her fine establishment AND to participate in the extraordinary dinner series she holds next door at her venue Hillside, we knew that we were in for a special week. The neighborhood of Vinegar Hill is a quaint, tucked away gem off the main streets of Dumbo. Venturing out into a new territory is always a welcome escape from our daily routines.

Vinegar Hill House is situated upon the most charming cobble road with colorful, lively properties lining the street. When you arrive at their door, you can’t help but feel you’ve stepped out of a dream and ready to greet the amazing meal that awaits you. Jean and Chef Mike Poiarkoff sure know how to work a room. Whether they are preparing to serve guests for a dinner series at Hillside or getting ready for a big night at the restaurant, you are guaranteed to feel at home in their care. Their no fuss attitude translates to delicious, hearty, warm meals with close attention to detail and beautiful presentation.

Read on as we pick Jean’s mind to get into the world of a bold, bright lady restaurateur:

 
 

Restaurant Location:

72 Hudson Ave, Brooklyn NY 11201

What does a normal day of a restaurant owner look like?

It varies wildly, I had to learn how to transition from the rigorous scheduling of being a restaurant chef to a more spontaneous troubleshooting management style. A day could consist of meeting with a company to discuss our web design, to cultivating dinner and event concepts for Hillside, to meeting with staff and management to solidify service philosophy or simply just watering the plants.

 

Favorite thing about dining Manhattan, Favorite thing about dining in Brooklyn.

Manhattan- I feel like I’m going on an adventure. Brooklyn- I always feel at home

 

We love that you have an extensive background as a trained chef, what is the thing you love most about being in the kitchen?

I love trying to make something out of nothing. I work best in situations where I am limited. I find that is where I am the most creative.

 
 

Are there any dishes on the menu created by you? If so, spill the beans!

I guess you could say the pork chop, chicken, liver mousse and pancake are mine, although the chef can adjust the garnishes as he see fits or based on seasonal produce changes. Those dishes are where our patronage loyalty was established and so they will never come off the menu, because we appreciate what our Regulars have done for us.

 

We are obsessed with Hillside you space alongside Vinegar Hill House. What a perfect setting for an intimate gathering. Besides your lovely dinner series what kind of events is the space used for?

We have done a ton of baby shower brunches, rehearsal parties and birthdays there. We are also doing pop-up women maker markets quarterly with Taylor from Fox Fodder Farm and are working on different potential pop-up food concepts tbd.

 

 

Vinegar Hill House is the coziest restaurant on the cutest street we've seen in Brooklyn. Who helped with the build out and interior design?

My boyfriend/partner Sam (owner/designer of  Fellow Barber) did all the design and build out for VHH with his bare hands and help of some really great friends.

 
 

How did you choose the location?

I lived in Park Slope for 10 years and have a great relationship with my landlord, I call him my NY dad. He owns three buildings in this neighborhood, one day he asked me if I might be interested in moving to a Carriage House in Vinegar Hill. Having spied this time warped microcosm before on multiple summer bike rides I jumped at the opportunity and couldn’t help and also asked if he had any commercial space available. The rest is history.

 

Favorite thing about being a restauranteur.

The opportunity to engage with creative, innovative and energetic people with similar interests. Also, getting to do something I love, even when it is really hard and stressful.

 

Where do you eat when you're not working? 

I fortunately cook most meals at home and keep our larder pretty stocked as well as purchasing all our vegetables on a weekly basis from the farmers market. In the summer out East we join the Balsam Farms CSA. Otherwise we are regulars of Speedy Romeos and Saltie (we love their Mr. Curry concept). And when we want to venture out, we are inspired by what they are doing at Mission Chinese, Semilla and Estella.

 

www.vinegarhillhouse.com // Insta @vinegarhillhouse // Twitter @vinhillhouse


 
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Jack's Wife Freda

 

Nothing makes us happier than when we find the sweet spot where community and food meet.  

Insert Jack’s Wife Frieda, the most irresistible dining destination with two locations in the heart of the city– SoHo and now the West Village. The fare is American with an enticing Middle–Eastern twist.  Not only are their Poached Eggs and Haloumi a dish of our dreams, but we can’t ignore the nice factor of their amazing staff.  As soon as you’re greeted at the door you feel like you’ve been crashing brunch here for years.

Husband-and-wife owners Dean and Maya’s warm and hospitable personalities shine through each aspect of the downtown hangouts.  From the communal table centered in the middle of the room to the café’s cozy leather banquettes each small detail makes us feel at ease. We can’t forget the food inspired by the couple's respective memories of home.

If you are curious, Frieda and Jack are the names of Dean’s grandparents. This effortless adds to the understated welcome everyone feels here which is undoubtable how Jack’s Wife Frieda has become a neighborhood staple.

Read on for our interview with Maya to find out what she loves about her neighborhood, where to shop local in the West Village and how to create a successful business partnership with loved ones.

 
 

Location.

50 Carmine Street, New York, NY

 

Take us through the day of a restaurant owner.

Wake up 6am, check emails from previous night (if haven't checked in the middle of the night), get kids up and ready for school, one of us does kids drop off at school, the other usually starts the day at Lafayette street, checking in with all the staff, servers, chef, kitchen, do a walk through and see what catches our eye, something broken, something missing, speak to our team for the day, huddle up and get prepared mentally and physically for the day, and how we can make it better than the day before.  After school drop off, the other one of us goes to carmine and does pretty much the same thing. Then the guests arrive and the work day begins. Its like a party everyday at 9am when we open the doors (or 8:30 am when the guests come and sit for a coffee while they wait for the kitchen to open.)

 

We love that anytime we visit Jack’s Wife Frieda (at either location) we always feel like we are at a friend’s place. How do you create this phenomena?

Thank you ;) hopefully through hiring and training, building that warm team dynamic. Instilling our core values into each person, that care, love and attention. and hopefully leading by example.

 
 

If you could eat one thing from the menu everyday what would it be?

Peri-Peri chicken (and Dean my husband actually eats it every day!)

 

Ultimate summer cocktail?

we are actually serving our PINK GUZZLER - its tequila, cointreau noir, splash of freshly squeezed lime juice, watermelon, shaken very well, served on the rocks - garnished with a  mint leaf

 

Does community play a role in your restaurants?

Absolutely. hugely, community is our restaurant and what we aspire to. you are us and we are you;)

 
 

The Mediterranean influence of your dishes keeps us coming back. How did you arrive at this delicious cuisine for the menu?

Naturally I guess, I am from Israel. It's one of those childhood moments when you think "if I had a restaurant when i grew up, I would have this this and that" - luckily I got my wish, and it's reflected in our food and flavor.

 

Mixing business and personal relationships can be tricky, do you have any advice for couples or friends looking to start a new endeavor together?

I think that the energy and the effort that you put in your relationship reflects on your work, and that the energy and effort you put in your work should reflect on your relationships.

 
 

Your Instagram (or Jackstagram) is one of our favorites! We love the mix of food and fashion from Maya's closet. Since we are all about local, who are some of your independent designers of choice?

I love my friend Winnie Beattie's  store around the corner from us in soho WARM  –she has the best local designers there and has breakfast with us at Lafayette all the time. My friends Sean & Monica have the label SEA NY and they are amazing people too and so talented. And Jessie Randal who also comes to Jack's Wife Freda all the time has the most brilliant line of shoes and bagsLOEFFLER RANDAL. Just writing this to myself at home, shows me the value of community at in our neighborhood and feel so blessed to be part of it. And don't get me wrong, what makes Jack's Wife Freda even more so, a true local community, is that ALL the types feel welcome and are part of our clientele - its a place for everyone and anyone.

 

 


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Local Creative x Condé Nast Traveler

Local Traveler

 

Sharing what we know as local is very dear to us. With the movement of talented, skillful makers emerging across the country we are thrilled to be exposed to the bounty of brilliant minds in our own New York neighborhoods. To celebrate community and a welcomed shift in seasons Local Creative teamed up with Condé Nast Traveler and Illegal Mezcal to host Local Traveler at the intimate Sky Gallery in Gowanus. Local, family run Macari Vineyard from Long Island’s Northfork supplied the wine for the special evening and Crown Heights based L’Atelier Vert constructed a Mediterranean influenced feast complete with roasted eggplant, braised lamb shank and a cheese course for the books. Handmade, woven rugs were provided by our favorite local vintage home goods and accessories store, Adaptations NY. Join us as we extend our Local Traveler experience to you.

 
 

Our lush garland was created with branches of eucalyptus and olive trees by florist extraordinaire, Lisa Przystup of James’s Daughter Flowers . White peonies in full bloom were placed delicately in the company of the greenery with fresh oranges to add a pop of Mediterranean inspired color.

 
 

Charming jars of coriander and chili salt from L’atelier Vert lined our guest table. While a simple herb sprig completed each guests table setting.

We spy Golly Magazine Fashion Director, Emily Rose Theobald, chatting with lifestyle blogger Brynn Elliott Watkins of Being Elliott .

 

The lovely Kayla of Illegal Mezcal preparing our refreshing Paloma’s for the night. Don’t forget the grapefruit Jarritos to top off the cocktail recipe. And Jenna demonstrating color theory with a pink Paloma and her
Samantha Pleet blush jumpsuit. 

 
 

When you get together a room full of ladies you must admire the footwear. Check out the styles on Nicole Benuska of Waiting for Saturday , Emma Tuccillo of And North and our gorgeous florist Lisa.

Maeve, our cohost for the night, updating her Insta with some shots from the event.

 

A gaggle of crisp Sauvignon Blanc 2013 from Macari Vineyard on the North Fork of Long Island, just chillin and waiting to be served.

The open, spacious Sky Gallery, in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Gowanus, made a beautiful canvas for our special gathering with three skylights and white brick details.

 
 

Our Canvas Bag Machine drawstring satchel’s were ideal for gifting some of our local favorite Brooklyn makers such as Malaya Organics natural oils, Hartland Brooklyn greeting cards and za’taar samples from Greenpoint Trading Co. amongst others.


PHOTOGRAPHY BY TAHITI HUETTER


VIDEO BY VINCENT CROSS

 

A special thank you to these very wonderful local makers for creating Oprah style swag bags for our lovely guests.

Antidote Chocolates / Assorted Flavors the most beautifully packaged, delicious, raw + roasted flavors including our favorite, coffee + cardamom

Aurora Botanica / Sage Bundles who doesn’t need a little sage for their room?  

Captain Blankenship / Mermaid Sea Salt Hair Spray summer is almost here and we already cannot live without this miracle salt hair spray.  Live like a mermaid this season.

Feng Shui Paint / Beaded Bracelets looking for the perfect shade of mint or purplish grey?  We are sure you will find it with Feng Shui

Glossier / Balm.com a lifesaving, hydrating do everything skin- salve that we all need in our bags

Greenpoint Trading Co. / Za’atar Spice Jars the cutest little jars with the best tasting seasoning! Thank you :)

 

Hartland Brooklyn / Gold Foiled Cat Card, Bon Voyage Card we love, love, love Hartland Brooklyn cards. Emily really has something for every occasion and just for everyday sentiments too.

L’atelier Vert / Seasoned Salt Tins L’atelier Vert (who also catered our dinner) can do anything, we truly believe this and are so grateful for the chile and lavender salt gifts for guests.

Leah Duncan / Tea Towels these illustrated home goods are a delight. So happy for our guests to take a little Leah Duncan home.

Malaya Organics / Body Oil the woods body oil if you haven’t tried it yet - do yourself a favor and check it out.  An oil that really hydrates your skin and smells perfect, it’s our dream come true.

Short Stacked Zine / Lemon + Honey Issues betcha didn’t know how many recipes involve Lemon and Honey?  That’s why we are so obsessed with this perfect kitchen companion zine.


 
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La'Atelier Vert + Eleven 36

Catering & vintage dinnerware

 

From the moment we were introduced to Nahvae Frost, the owner of full - service catering company L’atelier Vert, her passion for cooking, events and everything in the between was so bright, an easy kin was formed. Nahvae and L’atelier were an obvious choice for catering our upcoming spring gathering.  Amidst our love for za'atar, olive oil and spiced salts we were enamored with the fresh spirit and lively approach Nahvae takes in accommodating her guests. With her extensive experience and interest in promoting ecologically and sustainable ways of living, not only is this women wildly talented in the kitchen but she also knows how to dress a table. Join Local Creative as we raid her worldly rentals to prep for our Mediterranean inspired meal.

 
 

“The pieces we offer for rentals are a mixed bag.” Part vintage and part new, Nahvae has an easy way about marrying thrift store finds with items from retailers like Crate & Barrel and Restoration Hardware.  This leaves your table natural, sophisticated and unlike a spread from a catalogue.  

 

We couldn’t take our eyes off L’ateliers limoge plate collection. We love this particular type of porcelain from 18th century France that makes layering plates a decorative indulgence.  Obsessed with handmade pieces, Nahvae’s growing collection of pots, plates and vessels range from Brimfield flea finds to scouting ceramic artists from Asheville to Minneapolis.

 

Spice and everything nice, we cannot wait for to experience the flavor intensity that these cultured blends and seasonings will bring to our meal. Toasted pine nuts, cumin, fennel, pistachio, the list goes on and we know they will be put to good use.  

 
 

“My eyes are always open for anything that remotely fits our aesthetic. These plants are mostly from my great-aunt and grandmother which I rescued from Long Island, and we’ve held in our apartment for so long. Now they fill our space with so much love.”


 
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Nourish Kitchen + Table

West Village, New York City

 

If everyone ate meals like Marissa Lippert of Nourish Kitchen + Table prepares daily in her kitchen, the world would be a better place.

As a certified nutritionist, Marissa never fails to disappoint with every visit to her food counter.  You can expect classic salads like the detox Kale salad with watermelon radish, a most delicious almond butter and banana toast for breakfast and new menu options like the sweet potato noodles we were drooling over at our lunch. Don’t forget to add a signature juice like the morning green.

Nourish almost feels like an extension of our own home. We promise if you make time to visit this extraordinary establishment for lunch it will be a much welcomed relief from the confinements of your keyboard. You always feel like you are at the right place and you leave feeling satisfied, with a full stomach and most importantly nourished.

If you’re like us and have a sweet spot for local makers across the country then you will find yourself in great hands. Marissa has an incredibly curated selection of ceramics, publications, linens, home goods and accessories. Also on display is her lust worthy cookbook collection.  We are patiently awaiting the arrival of her own so we can recreate her magic in our kitchens.

During our recent lunch break at Nourish, we were so lucky to speak with Marissa and learn more about being a lady in the food business, starting your own company and how she curates the ultimate in food offerings for her guests.

 
 

Location.

95 Greenwich Ave, New York, NY

 

We love the concept behind a kitchen + table, how did you arrive at this for Nourish?

I wanted Nourish to feel warm, inviting and open – kind of like you were entering your own apartment kitchen or dining room.  It’s cozy, cool and (we’d like to hope) inspiring.

 

Your menu offerings are just next level delicious, how do you choose and curate such delectable choices day after day?

We structure the menu seasonally and get super excited about incredible produce and really cool, interesting and well-sourced/grown ingredients.  Dishes are inspired by what we see at the greenmarket or what our farmer partners have harvested on a given week.  We have certain staples that will always appear on the menu, but we’re always creating new specials and dishes based on things that inspire myself, our executive chef, Russell Yows, and the rest of the kitchen staff…whether it be travel, a riff on an old-school family dish, a twist on something traditional, a grain or spice we’ve just discovered etc.

 
 

Your background is as a nutritionist, how do you think this affects the way you run your kitchen and restaurant?

I think it’s enabled me to think about balance on a broader spectrum…what types of foods, dishes and combinations make our guests feel energized, taken care, satisfied – really, just ‘nourished.’  I really stress an emphasis on vegetables and fruits to my nutrition clients (and portion sizes) and this definitely plays out on Nourish Kitchen + Table’s menu.

 

Favorite summer salad?

My mom’s taboulleh which reminds me of childhood or a grilled peach and heirloom tomato salad with lots of herbs, blue cheese and garlicky whole wheat sourdough croutons.  You’ll find versions of both on our menu this summer (!).

 

It’s so perfect that you also do catered events. Will you share a bit about this aspect of your business?

We received our first catering request I believe about 3 days after we officially opened our doors back in July 2013.  Since then, it’s an arm of the business that continues to grow very steadily namely through word of mouth.  We love working with intriguing brands and companies as well as many of our regular customers.  Catering and private events allows us that much more creativity with our food in and outside our space.

 
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Talk us through the Curated Cleanse, a meal delivery service. This sounds like something everyone should know about.  

The Curated Cleanse combines my background and expertise as a nutritionist with the quality and deliciousness of Nourish’s food.  Our cleanse clients have various goals—weight loss, better energy, healthier eating.  I work closely with each person to customize their daily meals and snacks/juices to meet their individual goals.  So it’s a good bit more exclusive and personalized than your average meal delivery service or juice cleanse.

 

It’s so wonderful to see local artists and makers featured in your dining spot and online store. What’s is the most gratifying thing about sharing local for you?

We really love finding artisans doing jaw-dropping, amazing things…whether it’s local around NYC and Brooklyn or somewhere we have some sort of connection to.  We’re just excited to highlight gorgeous product that has a unique aesthetic, authenticity and a cool story behind it.

 
 

As a female business owner, what’s your best advice for someone looking to break into the food industry?  

Listen to your gut, take care of yourself and keep pushing, or as my best friend’s mom says “keep your gloves up.”  I encounter bumps and challenges every single day. I also am frequently reminded of things, big and super small, that keep my fire burning…the reason why I started Nourish’s concept in the first place.  You get knocked down, you get back up – and you BREATHE.  That’s what makes business tough, but incredibly rewarding.

 

Best thing about having your shop in the West Village?  

Nourish has really become rooted in the neighborhood – and it’s very much a tight-knit one.  We love knowing many of our regulars, almost like they’re family.  It’s pretty special to know we (and our food) have a hand in making them feel their best every day.

 

Nourish Kitchen + Table // Instagram @nourishkitchentable


 
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Gather: Sarah Owens

bk17 bakery

 

Bread, dare we say we love you.  We said it! We love big beautiful hearty loaves of bread. They are perfect to share with your favorite people or to shape up a daytime meal.  Sarah Owens of BK17 Bakery creates exceptionally stunning sourdough beauties that we had the pleasure of sampling this fall. When Sarah invited us over to her place for tea and to try a new a recipe from her sourdough baking book we were head over heels. Her adorable apartment is complete with a handmade spice drying rack, large butcher-block countertop and incredible botanical prints covering the wall above her fireplace. Talking with Sarah was such as pleasure, as she was the epitome of a wonderful host. Her web of collected experiences in botanical, gardening, baking and the arts is something to be coveted and we love that we get to share what we learned with you. Sarah has also some inspiring news coming up about her bakery.  Prepare to be converted to the bread side.

 
 

Where does the magic (creating the most beautiful loaves of bread) happen?

I have a dual baking life as a cookbook author and as a micro-bakery.  The recipes I have developed for the book called Sourdough (Roost Books, Autumn 2015) were all developed at home in my little kitchen on 17th Street in Brooklyn.  I credit the open studio format with its large butcher-block countertop as a great influence to bake so much and so often.  It also helps that there is an overabundance of fruit growing in my backyard as well as generous herbs and veg from my job as Rosarian at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. 

As a micro bakery, BK17 has floated from my home kitchen, to an incubator space, and now to a wood-fired pizza pub in my neighborhood called Toby’s where I bake in their off-hours.  Every location and oven has its own influence over the breads I bake.  It took a while to get used to the subtleties of working with wood heat but now I can’t imagine using anything else.  Even when the wood is green and the air is unbelievably humid, I still get a deep satisfaction from the rhythms of working with an organic fuel source.

 
 

Tell us about your path to sourdough.

A few years ago, I was having some serious digestive issues.  What I now call ‘flare ups’ were lasting for weeks and my weight would fluctuate wildly with side-effects that would put a damper on my work and social activities.  After some elimination diets, I discovered that I had intolerances to most whole grains, nuts, soy, pasta, bread, etc.  It was difficult to grasp since I couldn’t simply blame it on gluten, as is the trend.   The doctor I was seeing was suggesting taking meds as opposed to understanding the root of the problem.

One day I was browsing through a used bookstore and came upon an old paperback volume of sourdough recipes from the 70’s.  It even had a chapter on how to take your starter camping!  It harkened to memories of my grandmother baking and the process of making bread with a living culture intrigued me.  I began reading more about sourdough and discovered that lactic acid fermentation has a way of mitigating the effects of gluten intolerance as well as the negative effects of phytates that are naturally present in most whole grains, nuts, and legumes.  Understanding phytates as a hindrance to digestion as well as nutrient absorption was a big ah-ha moment!  

 
 

I tried several different methods of making a starter with little success before stumbling across a yeast water method from Sweden.  After a few days of fermenting raisins with water, honey, and sugar, I used this to inoculate some flour and boom!  I had a starter.  The first loaves were bricks, as I was an avid baker but had little experience with leavening hearth breads.   But my growing cookbook collection and bread baking obsession soon resulted in making lighter loaves with a chewy crumb and thick crust.  The intolerances began fading with the fermentation of the flour, soaking and sprouting of the seeds, and simultaneously cutting out refined sugars and processed foods from my diet.  As my gut began healing, my sensitivities to other foods began to wane as well.

After getting a better handle on the techniques of baking bread, people started requesting loaves when they were hosting meals and even large events.  Soon, I was nurturing a fledgling business and approached the Greenwood Heights CSA about offering a bread share.  They were open to taking me on and their members were overwhelmingly supportive.  It wasn’t long thereafter that I was entertaining wholesale accounts for Bklyn Larder and doing pop-up events with Fox Fodder Farm. It has been incredibly rewarding and a wonderful way to connect with so many different people.  But it is proving difficult to expand beyond where I am now with a full-time job, getting some sleep, and keeping a high quality of craftsmanship with limited resources

 
 

We love that you also work at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. How does your experience with botanicals and horticulture influence your time in the kitchen?

When you are a steward of thousands of plants, whether they are ornamental or edible, you cultivate personality characteristics as a gardener that are equally important to baking, especially with sourdough. Patience is an obvious virtue.  From watching a tiny seed transform into a rambling tomato vine or a blob of flour and water morph into active dough, you must be willing to commit yourself to the whole process.  One needs possession of long-term vision balanced with mindfulness of every present action.   The way you prepare your beds in spring may have dramatic influence over your yield in late autumn.  And even when you don’t feel like sweating profusely under summer’s oppressive sun and humidity, those plants need your cooperation.  Equally so, the use of a live sourdough culture takes a commitment to nurturing it along regardless of your mood, the influence of the weather over a hot or cold kitchen, or whatever else is demanding your attention that day. It is a great celebration of reciprocity between man and the elements.

I have also become incredibly inspired by the handling of plants through all of their life cycles.  When you spend so much quality time looking after them, their personalities become your companions and the opportunity to incorporate them into recipes is an irresistible way of reveling in the seasons.  Incorporating a rosette of burdock stems into a recipe is the ultimate chance to praise the warmer temperatures, gentle rains, and longer days of spring.  Perhaps this is why I’ve never been able to choose just one track of either growing or baking.  They are both so influential over each other for me creatively.

 
 

We are so beyond thrilled you have a cookbook coming out! What is your favorite sourdough recipe that is not a delectable loaf of bread?

This definitely depends on the season and what’s looking good at the market or ripe in my garden.  For a quick recipe with impressive presentation, I often defer to the Autumnal Upside-Down Cake.  It is adaptable to most fruits but my favorite combination is persimmons, pears, and cranberries.  I’m also a sucker for savory baked goods and love the kale scones or spring tartlets made with puff pastry, lemony ricotta, and topped with spring greens – another recipe that can be adapted to summer offerings using squash blossoms and shaved zucchini instead. But then there’s the Solstice Pie made with black currants in a buckwheat crust or the Gooseberry and Elderflower Trifle.  It’s honestly very difficult to choose!

 

BK17 Bakery Website / Insta 


 
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Fall Harvest with One Kings Lane

Macari Vineyard, North Fork

 

A beautiful tablescape is kind of our jam. We love all the details that go into planning, preparing and creating an alluring setting (sourced by local makers whenever possible!)  Macari Vineyard in Mattituck, Long Island was so kind to invite us to their property to host the most magical Local Creative gathering amongst their vines. Chef Edward, the youngest son of the Macari clan, had recently completed his culinary studies in Italy and prepared a delicious feast worthy of it’s impeccable wine pairings.

Before sitting, we enjoyed the 2013 Sauvignon Blanc and Rosé along with an assortment of fresh local cheeses and bread, drizzled in honey from the family’s beekeeping colony. We next moved to the long farmhouse table, where mixed greens and tomatoes from the Macari family greenhouse were served as a first course. A harvest squash soup served with honey whipped ricotta then homemade tortelli followed. The Northfork Catch of the Day, family style filet’s of swordfish beautifully prepared in a large copper pan was the perfect finale to our meal. We paired the dishes with the family’s 2008 Dos Aguas, a red blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec alongside a 2010 Cabernet Franc, that was named ‘best red wine in NY’ by the NY Food and Wine classic. For sweets, we enjoyed (understatement) local creamery Magic Fountainhomemade ice cream and a fantasy table full of pies from Breeze Hill Farm in Peconic, NY (like seriously lots of pie - apple, berry, peach - still dreaming about that). Of course we had a luscious dessert wine, their Block E, with notes of apricot, peach, pineapple and honey that added an exquisite end to our meal.

We wanted this dinner to be extra special, so we ran all over the city sourcing the goods for the table. Inspiration for the setting grew from rich reds, burgundies and the abundance of green from the vineyard. We fell in love with these macrame table runners from Anthropology.  For vessels we found an eclectic mix from Target’s home departments. Flatware was sourced from one of our frequents stops in Williamsburg’s Junk and the flowers were provided by the super amazing and talented Fox Fodder Farm. Taylor and Anna arranged a dreamy mix of dahlias, berries, twigs and leafy greenery. The always lovely Ilana Kohn dressed us for the event, we choose a jumpsuit and transitional fall dress we cannot live without.

We couldn’t have asked for a more perfect end of summer, beginning of fall day to share this meal with friends. The dinner party gods must have heard us because as the sun set the sky turned the most beautiful array of orange, blues and purples we’ve ever seen.  Truly a magical experience.  

If you want to learn more about Macari or the wines paired at the dinner, we included a list to make it easy to learn more.  Cheers!

Jenna and Nicole xx

 
 

Macari Wine Pairings

Sauvignon Blanc 2013: 100% Sauvignon Blanc fermented in stainless steel.

This year's Sauvignon Blanc boasts bright, citrus aromatics, with high-toned notes of grapefruit and kefir lime.  Clean and well balanced with hints of  lemon zest on the palate, the finish delivers with brilliant fruit and acid making it the perfect pairing for local seafood.

Rose 2013: Layered with fresh fruit and bright acidity, this rosé is a blend of 60% Cabernet Franc, 38% Merlot and 2% Pinot Noir. All grapes for this blend were vinified separately, each left soaking on the skins for three hours. Tasting notes of freshly picked strawberries, raspberry, cherry, juicy watermelon, and a lingering finish. Stainless steel fermented.

Dos Aguas 2008: This red blend is 70% Merlot, 17% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Malbec, 4% Cabernet Franc, and 1% Petit Verdot. Plums and nutmeg on the nose lead to a palate filled with cassis, spice, and a hint of smoked meats.

Cabernet Franc 2010: Named "Best Red Wine in NY" by the NY Wine and Food Classic. Dark berries, baking spices, and succulent herbs. The palate offers energetic berry bramble, balance, and a long, elegant finish. Drink now or cellar for 10+ years. Decanting recommended.

Block E dessert wine 2010: This dessert wine, crafted in the ice wine style, consists of 95% Chardonnay, 3% Viognier and 2% Pinot Gris.  Apricot, peach, pineapple and honey with hints of tea on the nose.  Tropical fruit, ripe peaches and a plush richness on the palate, this wine is an exquisite beginning or ending to any meal.  Enjoy with PIE!! :) blue cheeses, pâté, almonds, cheese cake, apple pie or simply drizzled over vanilla ice cream.

 

 
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