Wednesday, December 30, 2009
The bar opened the day after Prohibition was repealed in 1933, a worthy cause for celebration if you as us, and was modeled after a bar on the Queen Mary. The interior is original - the leather banquets, the vertical orange murals on scalloped walls, and the most exquisite glossy black bar that makes us want to lie down on it and have someone feed us maraschino cherries. It is Art-Deco heaven. And then they went and added that pink and red neon over the door - ecstasy.
They brag about their vodka martinis, but we much prefer the Gin and Juice served with fresh squeezed grapefruit juice.
A side note about the Oxford Hotel: it was the first hotel in Denver, and was built in 1890 by local architect Frank E. Edbrooke, who also designed the Brown Palace Hotel.
"The classical simplicity of The Oxford's exterior belied an extravagant interior, as opening day guests discovered on October 3, 1891. This luxury downtown Denver hotel, according to the Rocky Mountain News, sported the latest in gadgets and technology as well as Gilded Age opulence. The hotel had its own power plant and the most perfect system of steam heating, electric and gas lighting, and on each floor bathrooms had separate water closets with the latest improved sanitary appliances. The kitchen, added the News, is located so that none of the odor can possibly permeate through the house, and is provided with a series of ranges, broilers and all the utensils known to the culinary art. Dining tables glistened with cut, engraved glassware and Haviland China and silverware inscribed "Oxford." In a separate dining room for gentlemen only, merchants and bankers, politicos and attorneys, could feast privately before getting down to cigars and business. Antique oak furniture, marble and carpet floors, frescoed walls, silver chandeliers and stained glass glistened inside. Every room had an abundance of light and air because Edbrooke wrapped the hotel around a light well. With its own dining rooms, barber shop, a library, a pharmacy, a Western Union office, stables and a splendid saloon serving Zang's "Fritz Imperial," The Oxford was and still is an authentic Denver hotel, a city within a city."
Monday, December 28, 2009
Monday, December 21, 2009
Maybe we aren't the biggest fans of cereal (we tend to agree with Miss Pussy Katz, played by the indie goddess Zooey Deschanel, that cereal is a non-food), but we stumbled upon the film Flakes from 2007 and are reconsidering the concept. We love the cereal bar idea - only if they also have wi-fi and maybe serve a martini or three. Maybe 'tis time to look into designing some sort of coco-puff Bailey's cocktail...hmmm....
Flakes also has us looking at more vintage cereal boxes, given that we are total suckers for packaging.
Friday, December 18, 2009
For an affordable, dry, minerally, rhubarby bottle of the pink bubbles, check out the Bugey Cerdon by Domaine Renardat-Fâche. This bottle, imported by Louis Dressner and available in many stores for under $20 including here online. We drank it last night alongside some runny, sheepy cheese and it really put us in a rather celebratory mood. Louis Dressner writes, "The Bugey, halfway between Lyons and Geneva, is one of the tiniest and most obscure wine areas in France. Although the altitude is modest, the terrain is very mountainous, the roads are steep and winding as in the Alps, and the villages are built for cold winters – the houses made of gray/white limestones all bunched together on narrow streets. The region's star wine is the Cerdon Méthode Ancestrale, a semi-dry, pink bubbly made by spontaneous, but incomplete, fermentation. Alain Renardat is a respected vigneron in Cerdon, and he has been a long-time supplier of Alain Chapel's restaurant, in the Dombes. Alain and his son Elie make their Cerdon from Gamay and Poulsard, and follow the technique called "ancestral method" (in wider use is Méthode Champenoise, or else plain carbonation, the preferred method used for supermarket wines). The grapes are picked by hand, pressed and fermented in cold vats until the alcohol reaches about 6 degrees. After a light filtration that leaves most of the active yeast in the unfinished wine, it is bottled and continues its fermentation in the bottle, reaching about 7.5 or 8 degrees of alcohol and retaining a fair quantity of its original sugar. It is more vinous (with grapey primary aromas) than most Champagne, since there is neither dosage nor addition of yeast before the second fermentation."
We love the architectural lines of Riedel's "Vitis" lead crystal glassware, particularly their Champagne flutes, available for about $70 per pair on Amazon.
In the fascinating The Widow Cliquot: The Story of a Champagne Empire and the Woman Who Ruled It (Harper Collins, 2008), Colby College professor Tilar Mazzeo tells the story of the Veuve ("widow") Clicquot who built one of the leading Champagne houses in the early 19th century in an era when few women were internationally famous for anything other than marrying well or divorcing scandalously.
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
We aren't going to be shy about this one: this is the most beautiful piece of equipment we have ever seen. The KitchenAid Professional 620 Stand Mixer made out of copper, yes copper. We learned how to cook with a KitchenAid, and have been lusting for one ever since moving to New York. We will not divulge the price (look here at your own risk), we are still in a recession after all, but we will continue to dream.
Measuring spoons are critical in every kitchen, and in our opinion, they should be lovely and enhance the experience of cooking for our loved ones. These measuring spoons already have us in the mood to build this year's gingerbread house (more to come in the next week or so). The best part is, these spoons would stay in someone's kitchen for life, and they are only $24 from Anthropologie.
Speaking of spoons, isn't it annoying when you are cooking and you are blast with a lightning bolt of inspiration, and you can't find a pen or a pencil anywhere? We sure do. But now there is this spoon/pencil that will not only keep your kitchen neat, but allow you to keep track of your ideas while in the thick of it. Designed by Sebastian Bergne (one of our favorite Industrial Designers), it is $35 at Moss.
One of the best gifts we've ever seen around is the Bacon of the Month Club by the Grateful Palate - for $315 your lucky loved one receives a package of artisan Bacon, and all the fixin's:
- A different artisan bacon delivered to your door each month for 12 months
- Informative notes on all bacon selections
- Discounts on The Grateful Palate bacon products and bacons
- Bacon of the Month Club Membership Card
- The bacon strip - our members only monthly bacon comic strip
- The Bacon of the Month Club Pig Ballpoint Pen
- A little Rubber Toy Pig
- One free Bacon Tee Shirt
- A recipe each month using the bacon selected
- Discounts on suggested wines and products in recipes
- And a pig nose!
um. someone? anyone? bacon? to my doorstep!!!
moving on. it's genius. just sayin.
Also check out their obscene collection of Bacon related paraphernalia.
Another great gift idea for the man of the house is a Monogrammed Steak Brand from Willams-Sonoma. Don't forget to include Houston's Goode Company Steak Rub for $3.95-$11.95 - guaranteed to make a spot-on steak, no matter your skill level.
Every foodie needs some food on their Christmas tree (we demand aluminum trees), and we are completely smitten with these felt breakfast items made by Feltalicious. They are $15 for a set that inlcudes one egg, one french toast, and one piece of felt bacon. We also love the idea of a tree covered in felt eggs. Also a hit: the felt chips and salsa.
And continuing the theme of non-meat-meats, there is the Meat Medley Plush Toy & Pillow for the meat loving youngsters in your life made by Sweet Meats. The whole Shebang for $179.99, and comes with Deli Wrapping for only 50¢ - what a deal.
We love these black textured glass tumblers - they would looks absolutely fabulous on a table for a dinner for 8. They would be especially fabulous with the silver champagne flutes grandma has promised us, on a table covered in dark red flowers and candles. Lucky for your wallet, these tumblers are $10 each.
This vintage penny candy jar is $98 - and would look stunning filled with papabubble candy, a few pounds of lemons, glass holiday ornaments, or a string of red Christmas lights. These are also a great vessel to put your daily essentials - sunglasses, keys, a collection of red lipsticks, or perhaps a collection of correspondence cards from nights out on the town.
Finally, every baker needs a proper place to present her achievements. These are the most glorious cake stands around; colorful, fun, and guaranteed to make any sugar deprived soul giddy in anticipation. Designed by Iacoli Mcallister out of Seattle, this red beauty is $90 of pure joy. They come in other equally delightful colors such as Aquamarine, Magenta, Orange, Yellow and Purple, for those of you who are not as red crazed as I.
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Friday, December 11, 2009
CHEF BOY-R-BOB CHILI VERDE
2½ lbs of pork tenderloin cut into 3/8 to 1/2 inch cubes
Allow for 3 hours of cooking time*
In a 6 quart pot, brown the pork in the bacon fat. Add the remaining ingredients (using only half of the frozen or canned green chilies *) to the pot and simmer for 2 hours. You may need to add some water during the cooking time to keep the mixture covered.With 30-40 minutes of cooking time left add the remaining green chilies *10 minutes before the end of the cooking period adjust the thickness, salt and heat.
Thursday, December 10, 2009
First up, our main man Mario. Love the Crocs.
Every Person in New York
When's he going to catch a glimpse of Ira Glass? Ira, come to New York City so we can see you!
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
We would never hesitate to drink to ham - three cheers for ham! we love ham! - nor would we hesitate to put drinks on our ham... but a ham daquiri?
Well, it's like Alie says. If you're eating ham and drinking a daiquiri, it's going to become a ham daiquiri in your stomach.
They'll hold tight to nearly any surface - glass, aluminum, plastic - either hot or cold, so feel free to slap these suckers on your Champagne flute, hot toddy tumbler, PBR can, or red Solo. Bottoms up!
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
"Who's into the mustard?"
And we think you'll agree that a house with no mustard is a house of heartbreak.
A few of our favorite moments:
Monday, December 7, 2009
Lucky for all of us, she plans to sell prints of the cake poster in 2010. We will make sure to let you know when they are available.
Erin Jang, Love You Like a Fat Kid Loves Cake
Erin Jang, Oscar 5 course meal, 2006
One of our favorite artists, Will Cotton , has collaborated with Katy Perry . Mr Cotton acted as Art Director for the video California Gurl...
We first learned of New York-based artist Will Cotton when Restaurant Daniel's Pastry Chef, Dominique Ansel , constructed a sugar ribbo...
Beer, rap moguls, men... all communities we know and love, but those which can seem like overwhelming swirls of chaos and information, and w...
Ok ok ok, we admit it. We love Katy Perry. A modern day pin up girl ( Vergas would be envious), who's got the whole world always won...
We were recently asked what our favorite food scenes from movies are - and somehow, this hostess drew a blank. Of course, the next day we w...