Archive | May, 2013

The Rosebud Opens at The OUT NYC

31 May

Bella RosaSituated between two thriving gay communities in New York City, newly opened bar and lounge, The Rosebud, sandwiches itself between The OUT NYC and XL Nightclub. The new speakeasy-style lounge welcomes customers with warm reds and wood interior, but not everyone can gain entry to this exclusive new spot. A curated list of tastemakers will be offered exclusive membership for an annual fee. The membership will include guaranteed entry and priority table reservations at both The Rosebud and XL Nightclub, as well as special offers from the hotel, discount at KTCHN and complimentary access to The OUT’s spa and gym, not to mention special invites to private events. The craft cocktail menu was created by celebrity mixologists Tom Macy and Brad Farran, which features five signature ‘Rosebud Cocktails,’ prepared with rose-infused ingredients.

Wednesday night, the new venue held their official launch party and welcomed Michael Musto, George Wayne and a slew of other party-goers to check out the new space. The venue was designed by Steve Lewis and has a cozy and intimate feel. We think this new addition to The OUT franchise will be a welcome spot for all.

The Rosebud is located at 512 W. 42nd Street.
Hours: Thurs-Sat from 6pm to 4am.

   

Style At Your Fingertips: TopShelf Clothes

30 May

Katie Nadler

Tired of purchasing clothes online that you aren’t really in love with? Sick of running around the mall looking for the perfect outfit? TopShelf is the solution to your clothing woes! TopShelf is an online clothing portal that learns your unique style and provides insightful suggestions for the lady on-the-go. Using an elite network of stylists, comprehensive customer data and a fashion recommendation engine, TopShelf guides users to their ideal outfits. Instead of searching multiple stores, let the site work its magic and find styles that match both your taste and your budget. Manhattan with a Twist had a chat with TopShelf’s savvy Founder & CEO, Katie Nadler, to learn more about this great site and the benefits it provides for its users.

How did you initially come up with the idea for Top Shelf?
The initial idea for TopShelf came about as a way to solve my own personal frustration with online shopping. When I looked for things to buy it took forever and often I wound up with something almost identical to a piece I already owned.

Tell us about Top Shelf’s stylists.
TopShelf is selective with who we bring into our stylist network. We look for stylists who, regardless of their own personal style, understand their clients’ style needs and make the appropriate suggestions for that person. Many of our stylists work within the fashion industry as well, freelance styling for magazines and private clients.

TopShelfTop Shelf also has a blog. What kind of content can we find on there?
Our blog is fantastic. We have new themed original content daily that our readers look forward to. For example, Monday is our “Monday’s Muse.” We look at a celebrity whose style we love, pick our top 3 outfits and then show you where to “get her look.” We look at a lot of recent trends and show women that you don’t need to be a super model or overly adventurous with style to look chic and modern. Of course we also have a lot of stylist wisdom on the blog. Our stylists love to give their advice and we’re working on integrating their tips even more this summer.

When one books a personal styling session – how quick does that take?
We contact clients within 24 hours of purchasing a session. The whole process is generally completed within 2 days or less, however some customers prefer more interaction with their stylist and are willing to wait to purchase an item. The best part is that the majority of it happens online so it doesn’t have the same burden as scheduling a meeting in-person.

Right now Top Shelf is invite only, when will it be open to the public?
We are planning to open it up by the end of summer or early fall, although our first priority is to keep our member experience as personalized as possible. If that means being selective with membership, then that’s a trade off we’re willing to make. We are pretty liberal with the wait list when we see someone has recruited a large network of their friends to join the wait list through their custom URL. We always love to see when people get really excited about what we’re doing.

TopShelf

Do the clothing and accessories recommendations come in a range of prices?
Yes. Most of our shoppers like contemporary brands (think Theory and Michael Kors), but we definitely have members who shop more high-end or who are more budget-conscious. Personal styling is about what’s right for you. The site looks different for those who spend $1500 on a dress versus those who wouldn’t consider spending more than $200.

Who exactly is the Top Shelf customer?
The TopShelf customer is someone who is overwhelmed and frustrated by shopping online. She loves the idea of having a virtual closet and seeing 5 new outfits pulled together for her each week, from both purchased and new items. She appreciates that, from beginning to end, we’re all about providing a personal experience without demanding a lot of her time.

Image via Sobbing on Fifth.

Scorching Hot Summer Read: Inferno

29 May

Inferno–the latest installment in Dan Brown’s Robert Langdon series. As the name implies, its storyline revolves around Dante’s Inferno. With such success with prior novels, Angels and Demons and The DaVinci Code, Brown fans were a bit let down by The Lost Symbol. Luckily, that was not the case with Inferno.Inferno

Dan Brown is one of the best-selling authors in the world, which is surprising considering he just released only his sixth book. The majority of his novels center around the character of Robert Langdon, a bookish action hero that solves mysteries using ancient codes and symbols. After hearing Dan Brown speak at Lincoln Center recently, I got very excited to embark on his latest thriller. I was a bit skeptical at first, wondering how much of Dante’s Inferno would play into this new story and how it would meld with the life of Langdon. Although the plot references Dante’s Inferno, it is not an unbelievable, supernatural premise as one might assume. Instead, it brings together the history and symbology that Langdon excels at with a new element of science that this series has not yet seen. A great aspect of this novel is that it brings in real world issues and looks at them with a unique perspective–namely, overpopulation. I won’t say any more.

From page one, the book is a page-turner and the action is truly non-stop. Not wanting to give anything away, I will say that the ending is not something that you can foresee, thankfully, and depicts a much more realistic ‘threat’ than Brown’s previous works. Inferno was released at just the right time, making it a sure hit on summer beach read lists around the country.

Can You Say Paella?

29 May

Paella

Oh my god. Can you think of anything better than tons and tons of paella? Well we can’t either, which is why we are super psyched about Andanada’s Paella Festival, which launched yesterday and runs until June 9th. The restaurant is now showcasing special authentic paellas prepared by executive chef Manuel Berganza. The paella special is available during lunch or dinner and is just $25 per person (2 person minimum) and comes with a pitcher of red or white sangria or two glasses of Tobelos Tempranillo Rioja wine. Best of all, there are a variety of paellas to choose from, so even for those who shy away from seafood, there is an option for you!
Mixta – land & sea mixture of chicken, calamari, shrimp, market fish, mussels, cockles, peas, and red peppers
Mariscos – market fish, shrimp, calamari, mussels, cockles, peas, and red peppers
Carne – a meat lover’s delight of pork belly, chicken, rabbit, chorizo, carrots, peas, and red peppers
Vegetariana – string beans, carrots, cauliflower, artichoke, peas, and red peppers

Andanada is located at 141 W. 69th Street.

The Perfect Summer Handbag

29 May

Yes, it’s been raining like it’s April lately, but we know the sun will come out to play soon (fingers crossed!). Ditch your heavy beach tote and grab a fun, bright handbag to take you from not to hot this Summer. Oscar and Anna has introduced the perfect solution with their Spring/Summer 2013 collection, which offers versatile, compact and bold bags that will not only be the ideal travel companion, but also right on trend.

Has Been Cross Body

Oscar and Anna’s Has Been Cross Body ($185) is a great summer essential this year. The cross-body design makes it easy to be hands-free for all your fun summer activities –shopping, drinking…you get my drift. Additionally, this bag offers easy access with a magnetic flap top and is super chic. You can take this bag from day to night all season long.

Izzy Clutch

Want to show off just how fashionable you are this summer? Make the rounds with Oscar and Anna’s Izzy Clutch ($325), whether it’s at a pool party, a rooftop bash, or a trip to the store. This clever bag can be worn three ways to appease any trendy lady, whether you nuzzle it under your arm, carry it by the strap or folded in hand.

Cleo

If you want something just a tad bit bigger, we love Oscar and Anna’s Cleo satchel ($595), which is a great alternative to kitschy beach bags. This timeless design can fit all your daily essentials and then some –reading for the beach, sunscreen, and for the adventurous souls, we know you’re trying to sneak a bottle of wine in somewhere this summer. Luckily, the Cleo will have you covered, and with such a nice bag on your shoulders, no one will suspect a thing!

 

Campari’s One-of-a-Kind Bartender Bash

28 May
Chrissy Teigen’s favorite drink of the evening was a Classic Campari Negroni (photo credit: Virginia Rollison)

Chrissy Teigen’s favorite drink of the evening was a Classic Campari Negroni (photo credit: Virginia Rollison)

Campari sure knows how to throw a party. One of the best parties thrown during this year’s Manhattan Cocktail Classic, Campari’s Bartender Bash threw down! The event obviously was overflowing with cocktails, beginning when party-goers were waiting for the elevator and received cans of Negroni Sbagliatos, and continuing with bartenders shaking up specialty cocktails at the two bars at Gallow Green all night long. The space itself had attendees in awe, with a 1920s vibe, old train cars where you could try your hand at a game of cards, and an intimate feel in a rather large space, making guests feel right at home. But alas, they were not at home, they had stumbled into the faux wedding of the founder’s son, Davide Campari, and opera singer Lina Cavalieri. Cocktail celeb Gaz Regan officiated the wedding in style and told the tale of the unparalleled love between the two lovebirds. Supermodel Chrissy Teigen was the maid of honor and the crowd went wild during the ceremony. DJ Kiss played amazing beats all night long, making those at the party dance until they sweat Campari. What did we take away from this one-of-a-kind bash? Canned cocktails are the shit. Gaz Regan is hilarious. We wish the Cocktail Classic wasn’t just once a year (although our liver is thankful).

Chrissy Teigen dressed to impress in an Alexander Wang red dress as she witnessed an over-the-top theatrical reenactment of a wedding ceremony of Davide Campari – the son of Campari’s founder and his unrequited love, opera singer Lina Cavalieri officiated by spirits luminary, gaz regan. (Photo Credit: Matteo Prandoni / BFAnyc.com

Chrissy Teigen dressed to impress in an Alexander Wang red dress as she witnessed an over-the-top theatrical reenactment of a wedding ceremony of Davide Campari – the son of Campari’s founder and his unrequited love, opera singer Lina Cavalieri officiated by spirits luminary, gaz regan. (Photo Credit: Matteo Prandoni / BFAnyc.com

Campari debuted signature canned Negroni Sbagliatos for the Manhattan Cocktail Classic festivities at the 2013 Gala (photo credit: Virginia Rollison)

Campari debuted signature canned Negroni Sbagliatos for the Manhattan Cocktail Classic festivities at the 2013 Gala (photo credit: Virginia Rollison)

Saturday Night Jazz at Kitano

28 May

JAZZ-at-KITANO-Signage

The Kitano on Park Avenue is more than just an upscale hotel for tourists and visitors, it also has a trendy jazz lounge that brings jazz lovers some excellent entertainment. The Kitano has a great line-up of talented pianists, vocalists, and instrumental professionals, and this past weekend was not a disappointment with Ronny Whyte performing. Although Mr. Whyte does attract a more mature crowd, his songs were upbeat and you couldn’t help but swoon in your chair; it almost became infectious!

Ronny Whyte is considered a premiere performer of Classic American Popular songs, an outstanding jazz pianist, and an award-winning songwriter. His trio that preformed alongside him included Boots Maleson (bass) and David Sullivan (drums). Mr. Maleson was a whiz at the bass, while David kept the drums very well integrated with Ronny’s voice.

Jazz at Kitano

The lyrics and instrumentals were wonderful. The songs preformed were about love–back in the day when a love song was actually a love song and “courting” a woman with words was the norm. The beauty of jazz is that this generation of music has not lost the feeling of lust, and the magic of the era continues on to the modern music world today. The style is romantic, soothing, fun and holds your attention. A performance such as this one, and like many others at Kitano, are perfect for dates, parents, and even grandparents who miss the spark and life of the music they once used to listen and dance to.

Kitano also features a very nice, but select wine list with small champagne bottles at very reasonable prices.  The wines by the glass were slightly pricy, but the pours were very generous, which made customers order more than one glass.  The menu also features sake and whiskeys, along with a very inventive cocktail menu featuring everything from classic margaritas to Negronis and French Martinis. The plating presentation for the food was simple, yet very enticing as we watched plates of Duck Spring Rolls and Fried Calamari come steaming hot right out of the kitchen. The service staff is very attentive about checking on each table, but aware not to disturb the performance. The service is quick and the menu items are delicious and certainly do not need any seasoning, like the calamari–perfectly salted with just the right amount of lemon and marinara sauce.

Calamari at The Kitano

The French Pear Martini should be your go-to cocktail when you visit Kitano, as it was flavorful and sparkling, with the perfect amount of Grey Goose Piore Vodka. Kitano Jazz brunch would make a great Father’s Day gift for dad at a cover charge between $10-25 and small plates starting at $15 you cant go wrong with an enjoyable afternoon or evening of jazz. Kitano has a variety of performers 7 days a week, and you can check out their site to see which one you may be interested in; you will certainly not be disappointed.