Stella Artois hosts a flavorful soiree with vibrant flair and music

A few weeks ago, Stella Artois invited me to its ‘A Symphony of Flavors’ event near the Brooklyn Bridge Park. Improvisational chef Jonah Reider, who hosts a weekly supper club called Pith, co-hosted the event. The soiree celebrated the launch of the “Make Every Table a Chef’s Table” video. The dynamic video is part of the brand’s “Host One to Remember” 4-part video series in collaboration with T Brand Studio. I loved the event’s concept of pairing artistic cuisine with lively music, all in a scenic venue. A big brass band performed all throughout the evening mixing classic and modern tunes. The evening was definitely filled with innovative elements.

To start off the evening, Jonah showcased 2 cocktails that paired perfectly with the food: Stella Artois Cidre Cinnamon Spice for a zesty flavor and Stella Artois Cidre Sweet Harmony for a sweeter flavor. We enjoyed multiple tasting stations with his delicious dishes such as oysters, celeriac soup, phyllo triangles, and fluke crudo. We also tried tomatoes filled with corn puree and hot dog sausages. To close out the evening, we enjoyed Jonah’s desserts such as panna cotta with caramelized apple cider and madeleine cream puffs that had a pastry cream infused with Stella Artois.

Flavorful dishes and tasty cocktails shined that evening. Jonah is a great host and you can truly see how much he enjoys bringing people together, much as Stella Artois does. He created a memorable occasion with his art of hosting and his innovative flair. Cheers to Stella Artois for celebrating the social experience of gathering together and throwing an amazing soiree!

Brand Director of Stella Artois at Anheuser-Busch InBev Carolyn Zwiener and Chef Jonah Reider joined Stella Artois to celebrate the brands Host One to Remember series on October 10, 2017 in Brooklyn, NY. (Photo by Craig Barritt/Getty Images)

Stella Artois celebrates the launch of chef Jonah Reiders video Make Every Table a Chefs Table as part of the brands Host One to Remember series on October 10, 2017 in Brooklyn, NY. (Photo by Craig Barritt/Getty Images)

NYFW Part 5 recap: Collections and technology take the spotlight

NYFW featured a fascinating range of events with fashion collections and technology. Check them out below:

The WWD x Samsung NYFW VIP Party took place at Samsung 837. It featured virtual reality stations, tech product stations, and a photo booth. WWD’s NYFW coverage also graced the multiple screens within the space.

The MaxMara Madison reopened during fashion week with a fun cocktail party. The beautifully designed store features 3 levels and that night fall and winter fashion collections took the spotlight on the racks. Bella Hadid, Philip Bloch, and Nikki Taylor attended the event.

Kristin Cavallari showcased her Uncommon James + Chinese Laundry by Kristin Cavallari collections at Bagatelle. The Uncommon James collection features effortless, sophisticated jewelry. The Chinese Laundry by Kristin Cavallari line features a chic line of boots, flats, sandals, and pumps that are perfect for everyday wear. Guests enjoyed viewing both collections at the event and enjoyed delicious small bites.

Awl & Sundry threw a launch party for its Capsule Collection at 40/40. The collection features men’s shoes envisioned by athletes Eric Neddle, Nate Burelson, Rashad Jennings, and Marcel Reese. The shoes are sophisticated, trendy, and innovative.

Timberland hosted a NYFW lounge at Arlo Soho. Guests enjoyed viewing the Fall 2017 women’s collection and unwinding in the lounge. They were also able to customize 6 inch boots online through Timberland’s website.

Yigal Azrouël’s SS18 after-party took place at The Mailroom. Guests enjoyed vodka specialty cocktails and viewing the SS18 collection on a screen within the venue. The collection consists of asymmetrical dresses, two piece outfits, and coats that have an elegant yet relaxed vibe. The clothing just flows seamlessly.

Vionic’s Zen NYFW Lounge took place at the brand’s showroom in Midtown Manhattan. Vionic creates stylish shoes that are comfortable with orthotic contour built into every shoe support. Guests were able to unwind and recharge. They also got to browse the Fall 2017 and Spring 2018 shoe collections.

What a great mix of events. Hope you all have enjoyed my NYFW recaps!

NYFW Part 4 Recap: Vibrant parties and events for the week

There was no shortage of cool events and parties at NYFW! Here’s a look at some of them:

TechStyle NYC gathered a great set of sustainable, fashion, lifestyle, and technology brands at The Lofts at Prince. Baked Bouquet creates rose-like bouquets that are made out of cupcakes. KIND makes nutritional snacks such as Vanilla Blueberry bars and Cherry Apple Chia bars. Cladwell is an app that helps you create personally styled outfits. A Genie’s Dream is a monthly subscription that inspires your mystical soul and inner genie goddess. PERCH designs interactive retail displays that customers can engage with at stores like Sephora. VENIA designs modern, sustainable fashion pieces. K. Carroll Accessories carries stylish and functional handbags and accessories. DV Closet is an app that works as a private fashion stylist and provides fashion advice and news. Thread transforms trash from the poorest communities into meaningful, recycled fabric. Lastly, Plant-O-Gram distributes exotic and tropical fruit trees worldwide.

Domenica Vacca showcased his SS18 collection at his store and Domingo Zapata hosted at art opening for his exhibit “Sueños” at the Domenico Vacca Gallery. Over 400 guests attended the dual parties such as Victoria Silvstedt, Antoine Verglas, Tony Lo Bianco, Marc Elliott, and Greg Kelly. Vacca’s SS18 collection is vibrantly colorful with chic silhouettes. Zapata’s exhibit is inspired by New York and its street art. The paintings are colorful, provocative, and hip. The exhibit will be up at the DV Gallery for another month.

Alpha Blu Skincare hosted a pampering suite at The Dream Hotel. Guests enjoyed massages and facials with Alpha Blu Skincare Day Cream, Night Cream, Eye Cream, and Smoothing Skin Serum. These products contain ethically gathered human stem cells that provide anti-aging benefits and generate an illuminating glow. I can attest that they leave your skin feeling smooth and looking youthful!

Domingo Zapata celebrated the launch of his newest book The Beautiful Dream of Life at Chef’s Club Counter. The book is about an internationally celebrated artist with a combination of wealth, exclusive parties, and admirers who becomes disillusioned by the world around him. Kelly Rutherford, one of Zapata’s biggest supporters attended the event.  Guests also enjoyed samplings of paella.

The OK! Magazine NYFW Party at Under The Hudson was the hot event to be at! Notable guests included Rachel Lindsay & Bryan Abasolo, Dorinda Medley, Christina Milian, Melissa Gorga, Kelly Rutherford, and Miss J Alexander. Some of the event’s sponsors included Schick Quattro You, Color Oops, LA Girl, Tampax/Always, and Masque Bar. Guests enjoyed dancing to beats by DJ Tom Macari and drinking Smirnoff specialty cocktails out of coconuts.

The Snoopy & Belle in Fashion exhibit took place at Brookfield Place. It featured the Peanuts characters dressed in exclusive designs by Zac Posen, Swarovski, Betsey Johnson, Anna Sui, Gucci, J. Mendel, and more. Each design is unique, trendy, and super adorable!

NYFW Part 3 Recap: Lounges and events that inspire

There was a great range of lounges and networking events during NYFW. Check out my coverage of some of these lounges and events below:

The Nolcha Shows Fashion Lounge took place at the Bryant Park Hotel and featured a great showcase of brands. Cheryl Eve Acosta displayed her sculptural jewelry line that is wearable art. ALL BLACK FOOTWEAR highlighted its chic shoe line that includes slides, sneakers, and booties. Gallery of Indonesia showcased jewelry designed with metal and Indonesian water pearls and handbags made from handwoven fabric. SHOLDIT featured its multi-functional scarf that’s super soft. Neubryne showcased innovative shoes with hand-painted wooden heels. TRADE by Gina Lamorte displayed its handbag line with an ethical mission: 20% of profits go to an organization advocating against human trafficking and slavery. Lastly, ECRU New York highlighted its Dry Texture Spray, a hybrid of dry shampoo and hairspray, and provided guests with makeup touchups.

The Sanctuary of Wellness with Cygalle Healing Spa took place at the Rose Hill Rooftop. Guests enjoyed Gold Kinetic Facials that used organic and natural cleansers, masks, toners, moisturizers, and more. I love how all of the products smell great and leave your skin feeling and looking flawless. Guests also enjoyed mini manicures and Doctor Perricone Hydrogen Water which is a great source of energy.

Blogger and the Brand at the Manhanttan Penthouse was great for networking and learning. Mary Gui from Layers of Chic Blog, Christina Galbato from Bold Brunette, and Stephanie Abrams, Co-founder and CEO of SocialFly led a panel at the event. They talked about a range of topics from how they started their blogs, to what brands are looking for when they work with influencers. I loved their different stories and perspectives! Event sponsors included Ombre Digital, Adessa, Bartenura, Nineteenth Amendment, and When.

The GBK NYFW Styling Lounge was the place to be seen! Held at 404NYC, it featured an incredible range of beauty, lifestyle, and fashion brands. Here’s a brief overview:

All Beauty Water- This beverage is filled with vitamins that are good for your skin and other essential ingredients such as calcium and zinc. It comes in 3 different flavors: Pomegranate Rose, Cucumber Aloe, and Strawberry Acai.

Nature’s Bounty Hair, Skin & Nails Gummies- Just 2 delicious gummies a day promote healthy skin, nails, and hair. The brand also had a lounge with manicures courtesy of Paintbox.

Grande Cosmetics- The beauty line was showcasing its line of Lip Hydrating Plumpers which improve lip volume in just 3-5 minutes and hydrate dry areas.

Catskill Provisions- This brand makes rye whiskey infused with honey and honey whiskey truffles. The honey is locally sourced in the Catskills Mountains.

Fortune & Frame- This jewelry line consists of handcrafted fortune lockets and other inspirational pieces. The pieces are available in gold, silver, and rose gold.

Sclarandis- Started by Sarah Sclarandis, this shoe line carries high quality, Italian-made luxury footwear that’s comfortable and stylish. The line ranges from flats to booties to over the knee boots.

Milene Jardine- This artisanal chocolate truffle brand is inspired by travel, international beauty, and love. It designs 5 piece and 15 piece boxes that are perfect for gifting.

Champagne Jeeper- This champagne from Faverolles et Coëmy has been around since 1949, but has just been introduced to the US market this year. It’s crisp, refreshing, and has fruity aromas.

Bfloral- Known for its custom floral bouquets, this brand also creates floral-inspired jewelry. Everything from hair crowns to rings and chokers!

Cynthia Gale jewelry- This brand features fine sterling silver jewelry & accessories for women and men. All of the pieces are modern, innovative, and artistic.

Eva Gems and Jewels- Eva Meijer creates fine jewelry pieces made with the most unique colored gemstones. She carries ready-to-wear jewelry and she designs customized pieces.

What an incredible mix of lounges and events!

Invivo: An invigorating wine brand with a growing following

Last Wednesday, Invivo, a New Zeland wine brand, invited me to its US debut celebration at SPiN New York. The brand’s co-founders and childhood friends Tim Lightbourne and Rob Cameron welcomed guests and toasted to this momentous occasion. They also celebrated with their US “glambassador,” fashion photographer Nigel Barker. Interestingly enough, Nigel was the first person in the US to try Invivo.  I love his fascinating story! (Check my Instagram @Citychickstyle for the video clip). Other guests included Jay Manuel, Hugh Jackman’s wife Deborra Lee-Furness, Olympic swimmer Matt Targett, US Olympic fencer Miles Chamley-Watson, President of the NY Stock Exchange Tom Farley, Nole Marin (judge on ANTM), Sasha Aaron (country singer), fashion designer Alice Roi, and many more.

We all had a great time at the celebration drinking the brand’s Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir, and having small bites. Nigel and other guests played ping pong and a little “wine pong” too. At the end of the evening, Nigel played a game of ping pong against producer Eric Phillips and the Invivo glambassador won!

I learned some other interesting facts about Invivo at the event.  Graham Norton, a UK talk show host, is a shareholder and partnered with Invivo to create his own wine. This blend is also now available in the US. Graham Norton’s OWN is one of the world’s fastest growing bottles of wine going from selling just 12,000 bottles in 2014 to 2 million bottles in 2017; Invivo has become New Zealand’s fastest-growing winery, with 850% sales growth since 2011; Invivo is listed in Deloitte’s fast 50 growing companies and is currently sold in 17 countries around the globe. Additionally, Invivo received the “World’s Best Sauvignon Blanc” award! It’s the truth- we all couldn’t get over how delicious this blend is. Cheers to Invivo and to many more milestones for the brand!

Tim Lightbourne, Nigel Barker, and Rob Cameron (Photo by: Rachael Ross)

Invivo Sauvingnon Blanc Pinot Noir (Photo by: Rachael Ross)

Invivo Pinot Noir (Photo by: Rachael Ross)

Nigel Barker, Jay Manuel, and Cristen Barker (Photo by: Rachael Ross)

Nigel Barker and Deborra Lee-Furness (Photo by: Rachael Ross)

NYFW SS18 Recap Part 2: A mix of themes and detailing

Here’s my 2nd recap on NYFW SS18. Get ready to see a lot of unique detailing, hip themes, and individual expression!

831Minhle

831Minhle showed its SS18 collection at Pier 59 Studios. It featured lace, ruffles, a bright floral print, and alluring silhouettes. I love how graceful, detailed, and creative the looks are. The collection is all about conveying individual spirit, feminine prowess, and an undeniable passion for stylish pieces.

My favorite looks included a white lace mini dress with bell sleeves, a partially sheer black and white embroidered white leg romper, a nude lace and silk wide leg romper with a ruffled top, and a nude sequin lace dress with a plunging neckline and ruffled detailing. The styles are contemporary yet timeless, evoking comfort and confidence. Brilliant!

 

Liu Bolin
Liu Bolin, a Chinese performance artist and photographer, presented his first NYFW collection at Spring Studios. His collection is quite innovative in that he hand-painted each look. The looks are inspired by the 12 politically-themed photographs he took in the US. The collection is a fascinating mix of art, photography, and fashion detailing in a completely unexpected way. Stand out looks included a green mixed print sleeveless dress, a cereal-themed oversized cape, a multilayered black gown, and a one-sleeved sheer and green mixed print blouse with mixed print pants. What an innovative collection!

Katie Gallagher
Katie Gallagher presented her SS18 collection at a space in the West Village. It’s inspired by the rain season and focuses on the moods and energies that come with the rain. The collection features black and baby blue palettes with tulle, mink, silk, sheer, and pearl elements.

Highlighted looks include a sheer black hooded cape over a black bra and black tights, a baby blue bodysuit draped with a mink sash and paired with baby blue tights, and a black long-sleeve top with sheer sleeves paired with black pants and baby blue tights. The looks are fluid, dark, and enchanting. What an interesting take on the rain!

New York School of Design
New York School of Design presented SS18 collections at the Calligaris SoHo. The presentation featured 8 emerging designers from the school’s graduating class and recent graduates. It was a mix of women’s evening wear and men’s street wear. I loved all of the gowns, mini dresses, and elegant separates. The men’s looks were casual, hip, and innovative.

M65
M65, designed by Anthony Hendricksen, presented its SS18 collection at Tumblr’s headquarters. It evokes a hip vibe inspired by the late 80s and the early 90s club era. The collection uses leather, fur, and denim to create comfortable, stylish, and standout looks. Some of my favorite looks included a leather halter top draped with a mink coat and paired with jeans, a green coat with mink sleeves paired with jeans, and a long denim coat over a white M65 logo t-shirt and denim shorts. I love how Hendricksen is bringing back the 80s and 90s style with a modern twist!

NYFW SS18 Part 1 Recap: Vibrant colors and textures

The SS18 NYFW was filled with exciting collections and moments. The week is always one of my favorite times of the year. Check out one of my first recaps down below!

Chocheng

Chocheng presented a beautiful SS18 collection at Skylight Clarkson. It’s inspired by the golden age of Haute Couture from 1947-1957. I’m fascinated by its range of fabrics that include Cotton bouclé, tweed, embroidered silk lace and handmade embellishments. I also loved the color palette that included red, lilac, pink, and cream. The collection offers a mix of knits and separates and is alluring, sophisticated, and retro chic. It’s a modern twist on a classically elegant silhouette.

My favorite looks include a lavender and white striped sweater over a white knit dress, a pink boucle jacket over a pink and white striped top and black shorts, a lilac sweater over a lilac knit dress, and a white jacket with fan embellishments paired with white shorts. The looks are subtly dramatic, chic, and graceful!

Supima

The Supima competition runway show celebrated its 10th anniversary at Pier 59 Studios. It was hosted by June Ambrose and Bibhu Montpartu served as the competition’s mentor. The competition showcased the SS18 collections from 7 designers at top fashion schools nationwide. Each of the collections featured different elements such as geometric detailing, romantic accents, and innovative fabric pairings. Alyssa Wardrop from FIT was the contest winner. Congrats to Alyssa and all of the finalists for creating unique and beautiful collections!

Vicky Zhang
Vicky Zhang displayed a unique SS18 Collection at Skylight Clarkson. The designer featured mother and child looks on the runway. Both boys and girls walked in synchrony with mother-type models. Many components in the collection stand out such as draped sleeves, capes, innovative slits, embroidered lace, and vibrant colors. The looks are elegant, whimsical, and classic. I couldn’t get over how cute the children looked in the mommy and me outfits! The show ended with the children dancing to an upbeat song. This ending along with the beautiful looks kept everyone in great spirits at NYFW!

Pamella Roland SS18: Glamour takes the stage

For another season, I attended Pamella Roland’s Spring/Summer 2018 Runway Show at Pier 59 Studios. I can’t get over how stunning the collection is! It’s inspired by the chic town of Monte Carlo and combines an array of fabrics such as pleated tulle, embroidered lace, crepe, and ombré mikado. The styles are glamourous, sophisticated, dramatic, and flawless. I love how Roland uses a range of vibrant colors such as blush, fuscia, aqua, gold, and lilac. The looks also have intricate detailing such as crystal and sequin motifs, metallic fringe, and feather plumes. They are exquisite fashionable masterpieces.

I had a tough time picking my favorites, but there are definitely a couple of key looks that I keep thinking about. I love the fuschia hand pleated and draped gown, the blush cocktail dress with a feather plumed hem, the gold embroidered metallic fringe cocktail, and the aqua and cobalt blue draped dress, and a white and blue ombré mikado gown. These dresses are attention-grabbing, vibrant, elegant, and perfect for an evening celebration. They are whimsical and alluring. The craftsmanship is impeccable and the styling is truly innovative. What a fascinating collection!

 

Perrine hosts Smash Bash: A stylish toast to Tennis

Last Wednesday, I enjoyed stopping by Perrine at The Pierre Hotel for its Smash Bash, a vibrant celebration of the game of tennis. 2017 Wimbledon Champion Garbiñe Muguruza co-hosted the event. She’s ranked number 4 in the world by the WTA and has won 4 singles titles that include 2 majors: the 2016 French Open and the 2017 Wimbledon Championships. She turned professional in 2012 and of course continues to dominate the tennis scene.

The event was a classy outdoor festival on Perrine’s Rosé Terrace which overlooks Central Park. Guests enjoyed Whispering Angel Rosé and the Honey Deuce cocktail by Grey Goose, the official cocktail of the US Open. We also feasted on a great selection of scaled-up court-side fare including a Mediterranean spread, hot dogs, cheese fries, chicken lollipops, and sliders. At the dessert section,  Perrine’s signature Mignano Candy Bar and its fruit ice pops impressed me. The delicious cocktails and sumptuous food abundantly flowed at Perrine!

Guests participated in table tennis and enjoyed live music from jazz band Gotham Easy. DJ Rosé also spun a mix of lively beats. The night was filled with a great mix of sports, food, drinks and music. What a perfect evening!

 

Dîner en Blanc: An elegant soiree in the Big Apple

This past Tuesday, I had the pleasure of attending Dîner en Blanc at Lincoln Center. Selavi Global produced the event impressively. Everyone was dressed beautifully in white and had the most creative table displays. The evening included special surprises such as performances by Opera singers Samantha Jeffreys and Andrea Chinedu Nwoke. Rockjazz musician ELEW and Brooklyn United Marching Band also impressed guests with their vibrant sound. Cover Girl provided a touch up station with free makeup giveaways as well as a photo booth to capture the moment. Chef Todd English prepared elegant picnic meals with dishes such as Southern Fried Chicken, Baby Back Ribs, and Vegan Corn Salad.

Additionally, Evian Badoit, Kenwood Vineyards, and Canard-Duchêne Champagne provided the beverages for the evening. The combination of elegant plates and refreshments balanced each other perfectly. The event’s DJ also superbly mixed a variety of tunes to add to the chicness of the affair.

I spoke with Gilles Amsallem, co-founder of Selavi Global, to get his take on the event:

LR: Tell me a bit about Selavi Global and how your relationship with Dîner en Blanc began. What motivates you to continue producing the event?

GA: I spent 15 years doing textiles, but then there was a big shift in the fashion industry. Business and social events started booming so our company became known for great events. Dîner en Blanc chose Selavi seven years ago to produce and launch the event in NY and other cities. People were recommending us. The event had been extremely popular in France for 20 years, so it was a beautiful image for our DNA. We used to be known for French Tuesdays, beautiful white parties in NY and LA. When we launched Dîner en Blanc for the first time, it was an obvious partnership. The event was spectacular so we kept doing it.

LR: What do you enjoy most about the event?

GA:The response is great from so many sides. There are over 100 volunteers. People really want to be part of it. There are amazing people from our guests to our sponsors.

LR: How do you go about picking the location?

GA: Not that many venues can hold 5000 people. It’s all about being diverse and choosing venues that can accommodate and that can legally have that many people. The place has to be iconic, exciting, and have a wow factor. It takes 2 months to get permits for liquor, the fire marshal, etc. It’s a full-time job for a few people and volunteers. This year the event sold out in 4 days.

LR: How do you orchestrate the volunteer component?

GA: We have table and group leaders- there’s a high demand for volunteer spots. We give priority to people from last year that were very good with communication, friendly, and had lots of good comments from guests. We look for people with passion as this takes up a lot of hours to plan.

I also spoke to Chef Todd English on his involvement with Dîner en Blanc:

LR: What continues to draw you back to partnering with the event?

TE: I like the uniqueness of it. It’s a fun event, the excitement it draws the whole atmosphere of popping up in a cool place in the city. I like the spirit of it.

LR: What inspires you in creating the curated menus for the evening?

TE:This year I did a fried chicken and a barbecue dish. I did a vegetarian round as well. It has to be something that will be easy to eat in that setting. The food has to be somewhat picnic-like. You can’t grill so it either has to be room temperature or cold. And it should be fun and creative.

LR: What’s your favorite aspect of the event?

TE: Finding out where it is at the last minute is a fun part of it. I’m always marveled at how elegant it is when you have 5000 people all dressed in white. There are a lot of fun people and it’s a festive event. It’s the Kentucky Derby meets Mardi Gras meets Dîner en Blanc.

Lastly, I spoke to ELEW regarding his debut at Dîner en Blanc:

LR: What prompted you to partner with the event?

ELEW: Gilles and I became good buddies as part of my Los Angeles adventures. I’ve been doing a lot of screenwriting and directing. When I’m not doing that, I always stop by to jam with him at Jazz Eclectic Mondays [which he started]. I would just go there and light it up. He kept inviting me back. Then he told me he was going to be here at Dîner en Blanc and asked me to be a part of it. So it was very nice and natural.

LR: How do you go about picking what songs you would play?

ELEW: I try to do things that are going to cause people to really feel a part of what the mood is and what the look is. Some of the music that I play works great in this sort of panorama, in this type of space where it can really resound and resonate all over the place. It has a very elegant history and it’s nice to bring that elegance to all of the elegantly dress men and women that are flourishing in here and being fabulous.

LR: What’s most impressed you about being here?

ELEW: I like the community feeling. I love the large picnic feeling of it all. It’s lacking pretense oddly with all of the elegance, yet it’s very homey.

What an incredible evening with a beautiful crowd!

Photo by: Eric Vitale

Photo by: Eric Vitale

Photo by: Eric Vitale

Photo by: Eric Vitale

Brooklyn United Marching Band
Photo by: Hal Horowitz

Photo by: Light Feather Photo

Photo by: Light Feather Photo

With Chef Todd English

ELEW

Gilles Amsallem and ELEW