Dinner party of the year: Le Dîner en Blanc

Photos from previous Le Dîner en Blanc events in New York. All by Eric Vitale

Dinner party vibes put me in a great mood. So I’m excited to share that Le Dîner en Blanc is returning for its 9th consecutive year on July 17 in New York! This impressive culinary event brings together crowds of invited guests, all dressed in white. They’ll dine and dance in a beautiful outdoor space. These guests will bring white chairs, small white tables, and creative decorations for their areas. They’ll also bring their own dishes or can preorder curated baskets to pick up at the event. Le Dîner en Blanc is one of the hottest summer events in the city. This year, over 5500 guests are expected to attend. They’ll all gather at a unique, undisclosed location to celebrate the occasion, which is revealed at the last minute to continue the spontaneity of the event. In 2018, there were 64,000 people on the New York wait list!

Le Dîner en Blanc is an innovative global phenomenon that takes place in the US and all over major cities in the world. It is THE dinner party, foodie event of the year all around the world, and this year over 130,000 food lovers, cultural enthusiasts and fashionistas will celebrate at iconic outdoor venues in 80 cities spanning 30 countries, 30 in the U.S. including several US premieres. The three new US cities are: Fort Lauderdale, Harford and Raleigh.

The celebratory event is by invitation only, typically provided by friends and friends of friends who have participated in the past. Another way to attend is via the often-extensive wait lists in each city. Attending this event is completely worth it; you’ll never see such a beautiful display of guests dressed head to toe in white dining under the stars and enjoying a one-of-a-kind ambience. The experience is incredible. Looking forward to this year’s Le Dîner en Blanc!

 

 

Snack Bonanza: Hot new trends in the arena

Last month, I attended the Editor Showcase: Snack Attack! at Marriott Marquis in Times Square. This event brings together a variety of brands that share the hottest new snacks and trends for 2019. These brands included 88 Acres, Black Forest, PRO Bar, Nerds, Frito Lay, Farmer’s Pantry, Jarlsberg, Sprout, PepsiCo, SweeTARTS, Drizzilicious, and Crunchmaster. Such a great mix of sweet and savory snack brands! I love having go-to snacks at home and being able to recommend awesome snacks to my friends! Here I’ll share some quick highlights from the event.

What a treat to see SweeTARTS and Nerds. My family and friends know that I’m a candy fiend so my face lit up! SweetTarts has come out with Mini Chewy Pieces, Ro!s Bites, and Ropes in a variety of delicious fruity flavors. Nerds has Tropical and Rainbow Fruit Ropes as well as Rainbow Nerds. In going along with sweet snacks, Black Forest had some yummy Gummy Bears and Organic Gummy Bears on hands. Drizzilious had an amazing variety of crispy sweet snacks made with whole grains, quinoa, chia and flax. 88 acres showcased an amazing line of seed bars and seed butters, which are sweet and healthy. PROBAR shared its impressive line of plant-based, gluten-free Protein bars and snacks.

Moving on to the savory snacks, I was super excited to see Frito Lay there. The brand showcased its Jalapeno Poppables which are outstanding. Pepsi shared its Simply Organic White Cheddar Cheetos that have no artificial colors or flavors and are delicious. Farmer’s Pantry had an assorted range of corn bread crisps, with its tasty Jalapeno flavor as its new hot item. Jarlsberg showcased its new cheese sticks that are only 100 calories and easy-to-go snacks. Sprout showed off its Curlz, plant-powered snacks made from organic chickpeas and lentils: tasty and healthy! Lastly, Crunchmaster shared its Multi-Grain Crackers that are made with brown rice, quinoa, flax, sesame, quinoa, and amaranth.

This event definitely gave me the opportunity to discover a lot of great snacks. The new trends in the market are very impressive. Looking forward to next year’s Editor Showcase: Snack Attack!

 

 

Hair goals become reality: OGX brings vibrance to your hair

OGX  knows how to deliver on all haircare needs to reach those very possible hair goals! I’m in love with the range of products- everything from shampoos, to masks, texturizing sprays, and so much more. Within the last year, the brand has come out with a lot of new products. They include OGX Stylers, the Replenishing + Water Treatments Collection, the Smoothing + Liquid Pearl Collection, Deep conditioning Masks, and Dry Shampoos. All of these products smell amazing. I feel like I’m transported to an island when I get a whiff of these products’ exotic ingredients. Below, I’m sharing more information about these collections and which one is my favorite.

The Smoothing + Liquid Pearl Collection does wonders for smoother, vibrant hair. It has pearl extract and sea kelp to deliver shiny strands. I absolutely love how the products smell and how they feel on my hair. The collection has a Shampoo, Conditioner, and a Luminescent Serum. I’ve been using all of them for a few weeks now and definitely see that my hair is shinier and smoother than ever- hair goals for the win!

If you’re a dry shampoo fanatic, you’re going to love all of the OGX dry shampoos. They have that exotic, intoxicating smell and both reinvigorate dull hair and extend your style. This collection consists of Refresh & Restore + Coconut Miracle Oil, Refresh & Revitalize + Argan Oil, Refresh & Balance + Teatree Mint Dry Shampoo, and Refresh + Full + Biotin & Collagen Dry Shampoo. They absorb oil and refresh your hair!

 OGX Stylers are all about innovative formulas and convenient sizes. Styling options are limitless. There’s a Natural Finish + Aspen Extract Texture Dry Texturizing Spray and Locking + Coconut Curls Air Cream. It also has a Bodifying + Bamboo Fiber Full Dry Shampoo Foam, and a Bodifying + Bamboo Fiber Full Big Hair Spray in Travel Size. I’m obsessed with Bodifying + Bamboo Fiber Full Dry Shampoo Foam. It’s perfect for when I’m on the go needing a hair pick-me-up.

Lastly, there’s the Replenishing + Water Treatments Collection and Deep Conditioning Masks Collection. The first set has 3 water-inspired leave-in treatments: Replenishing + Water Cream Hydrating Treatment, Replenishing + Water Drops 8-in-Mist, and Replenishing + Water Balm Leave-In Mask. With Hyaluronic Acid and Everlasting Flower Water, these products detangle your hair and gives it moisture. The second set has an Extra Strength Hydrate & Repair Argan Oil of Morroco Hydrate Mask and and Extra Strength Damage Remedy + Coconut Miracle Oil Hair Mask. Both of these masks bring damaged, dry hair back to life with their unique powerful blends of ingredients.

So there you have it- I’m a huge fan of OGX! Every product works effectively giving you amazing, great- smelling hair. I truly feel that I’ve given my hair new life with lots of moisture and shine. I guarantee that you’ll be hooked once you try the brand’s products as well!

P.S. Did you know that OGX makes body creams too? It has a Smoothing + Coconut Coffee Body Cream and a Hydrate + Marula Oil Body Lotion. They both have amazing scents and leave my skin feeling ultra smooth!

La Nuit En Rosé: A wonderful exploration of rosé wines

Last month, La Nuit En Rosé took place on the Hornblower Infinity Yacht at Pier 54. This is a festival dedicated exclusively to rosé wine that brings together wine labels from around the world. Over 150 wines were showcased at the event! Some of these labels included Mouton Cadet, Veuve du Vernay, Day Owl, Maison Marcel, Rosé Piscine, Angry Orchard Rosé, and Freixnet Mionetto. The Palm by Whispering Angel, JNSQ Rosé Cru, Bonterra, and Silva Bella were also part of the mix. All of the wine distributors were quite approachable and very knowledgeable about their extensive wine portfolios.

I loved the outstanding setup for La Nuit En Rosé! A pink carpet greeted you as you walked onto the yacht. The wines were displayed on all 3 floors of the yacht and an assortment of food was available as well. This included President Cheese, risotto from Risoteria Melotti, and other small bites. There was plenty of pretty pink decor floating around in the spirit of rosé. Lively music from the DJ was pumping throughout as well. The yacht went cruising on the Hudson River for the last 2 hours of the event, and it was such a pleasant ride. It was a bit breezy but nothing that a nice glass of rosé couldn’t handle. Cheers to rosé and next year’s cruise!

Wagamama is making great waves again with a new summer menu

*All Photos by Ria Osbourne

 

Today, wagamama is introducing new flavorful dishes to its menu to kick off the summer. I’m so excited about them! The dishes will be available exclusively at all 5 of its US locations in NY and Boston. With positive reception for its popular ramen bowls, the restaurant is offering two summer bowls inspired by the poke trend and a ryokucha (green tea) noodle teppanyaki. Avant Gard’n—a vegan barbequed seitan dish co-created with chef Gaz Oakley —is back on the menu by popular demand. The U.S. wagamamas are also shaking up their dessert menus by featuring more Asian-inspired flavors and launching a refreshing matcha juice.

The new summer bowls and noodle dish have wholesome ingredients that nourish the body and soul. Nama spicy tuna has sliced, marinated and lightly seared tuna, served on a bed of brown rice with tomatoes, cucumber, and edamame. It also has radish with goma (sesame seed) seaweed, pickles, and a spicy mayo and miso dressing. The tofu bowl has shichimi spice-coated tofu on a bed of brown rice with tomatoes, cucumber, edamame, and radish. It also has goma seaweed, pickles and a ponzu and miso dressing. The new teppanyaki has ryokucha soba noodles in a dashi and soy-based tsuyu sauce with two fillets of miso-glazed cod, stir-fired bok choy, snowpeas, red peppers and scallions. It has a sweet miso dressing and garnished with fresh ginger, chili and cilantro.

In addition to these savory dishes, wagamama will be offering some delightful desserts. These include a matcha cheesecake with ginger ice cream and a lemon tart with a berry compote, topped with a sprig of mint. Ginger ice cream with caramel sauce, dairy and vegan versions of coconut ice cream will also be available. The new matcha juice has a mix of matcha, apple, pineapple and mint.

So whether you’re looking for spicy, lighter fare or sweet and refreshing options, wagamama’s summer menu will satisfy your cravings. The restaurant is known for focusing on good change. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed!

 

 

Tribeca Film Festival: A round-up of invigorating events

 

Tribeca Film Festival, an annual celebration of independent film, is always an exciting time of the year in the city! So I was so excited to attend a couple of events for it a few weeks ago. Many of the films hosted swanky after-parties for their casts and invited guests. Here are the ones I checked out!

First up was the after-party for Blow The Man Down at District Social. Attendees included Margo Martindale, Morgan Saylor, Sophie Lowe, Will Brittain, Skipp Sudduth, Ebon Moss-Bachrach, and Marceline Hugot.  Next up was the after-party for The Place of No Words which was also held at District Social. Guests included Nicole Elizabeth Berger, Eric Olsen, Sarah Wright Olsen, Phoebe Tonkin, Bodhi Palmer. I also went to the after-party for Lucky Grandma hosted by AT&T Untold Stories at Mission Chinese. Guests included Tsai Chin, Corey Ha, Michael Tow, Woody Fu, Wai Ching Ho, Clem Cheung, Yan Xi.

Another set of events that I checked out fell under the Supper Suite series. All of the events took place at Ainsworth East Village. I went to the after-party for The Short History of the Long Road. Guests included Sabrina Carpenter, Maggie Stiff, and Danny Trejo. I also went to the after-party for Buffaloed. Guest included Zoey Deutsch, Judy, Greer, and Jermaine Fowler.

Lastly, I stopped by Stella Artois Film Studio. Over the course of 3 days, the lounge hosted panels, receptions, and entertainment. It was a great space that offered guests Stella Artois mixed cocktails, small bites, and inspirational perspectives.

What an entertaining line-up of events. Looking forward to next year’s event lineup for Tribeca Film Festival

SHOWFIELDS: A uniquely designed retail concept

           

Photo by: SHOWFIELDS

Photo by: SHOWFIELDS

SHOWFIELDS, a new store with a rotating curation of brands and experiences, invited me to check out its new style and design floor. The store carries popular wellness, home, and design-focused brands in a venue that acts as an art space, a community platform, and a retail environment. It’s an impressive space with brands such as Kala, Saint James, Daniel Wellington for Klarna, CREAGH, and MONOGRAM. Each brand has a customized pop-up space within SHOWFIELDS where consumers can truly interact with and experience its products. CEO & co-founder Tal Zvi Nathanel developed the retail concept with his business partners to provide an inspiring environment where brands can choose how they connect with consumers.

In addition to getting a look at the store’s newly designed floor, SHOWFIELDS hosted a fashion panel that discussed the future of fashion and design in the digital age. It also focused on the evolution of retail. The talk included:

  • Sarah Creagh, CEO and Creative Director of CREAGH
  • Rebecca Migirov, Founder and CEO of Kala
  • Amy Hufft, VP of Brand at Shopify
  • Babba (Canales) Rivera, Founder of BY BABBA
  • Moderated by Katie Hunt, Cofounder & Chief Revenue Officer of SHOWFIELDS

I really enjoyed the discussion and took away some valuable insights. The key one being that retail is not dead- people will always want to experience the brand and its products in person. Retail just has to continue to adapt to the everchanging shopping landscape and incorporate the relevant technology platforms. I love that SHOWFIELDS embraces new brands that are innovatively leading the way with technology and consumer understanding!

I have to share my favorite elements at SHOWFIELDS! There’s an artsy slide that takes you from the 3rd floor to the 1st floor. All of the artwork in the space is also incredible, with Kelly Dabbah’s exhibit as one of my favorites. Nuria has a superbly created room with its entire product line on display. I also love the rooms created by Saint James and Quip, which are so innovative and welcoming. If you haven’t been to SHOWFIELDS yet, what are you waiting for. This is one retail experience you’ll surely remember and rave about!

LOOT 2019: Innovative jewelry takes the spotlight

Earlier this month, I attended the 19th edition of LOOT 2019 at The Museum of Arts and Design. LOOT is an annual exhibit and sale of innovative and contemporary jewelry from established and emerging jewelry artists. This year’s event showcased 55 designers from 18 countries. They included Paolo Costagli New York, Sebastian Schildt, Selvaggia Armani, Joo Hyung Park, Agustina Ros, Sarah Pulvertaft, and many more. These designers used a variety of materials such as metal, pearls, plastic, glass, leather, wood, and beads. The event also honored 2 outstanding individuals in the jewelry industry. This year’s honorees were Adria de Haume and Josie Natori. It’s truly a remarkable showcase of inventive jewelry designers.

I must highlight my favorite designers from the evening. Everything that Sebastian Schildt creates is remarkable. He had his fringe pieces on display in an array of vibrant colors. Alina Alamorean also had a eclectic collection of jewelry on display, especially the colorful necklace she was wearing. Ute Decker’s jewelry was also extraordinary with detailed gold pieces. Heng Lee also had some beautiful floral-oriented jewelry in splendid colors. There was such a great assortment of jewelry to browse and purchase at the event.

LOOT 2019 took place over the course of 4 days and a percentage of the proceeds went to benefiting the museum. What a beautifully artistic evening!

The Perfect Provenance fashion preview: A blend of elevated pieces

Photo by: The Perfect Provenance

Recently, The Perfect Provenance, a unique luxury lifestyle retail concept based in Greenwich, Connecticut, hosted a spring fashion preview at FANCY in Soho. It has a wide variety of fashion, accessories, and home décor from around the world. FANCY’s flagship store now sells a curated range of men’s and women’s fashion, jewelry, the brand’s signature candles, and handbags from The Perfect Provenance. Many of the items are also available on FANCY.com. The collection is fun, elevated chic, and perfect for the warm seasons. FANCY provides an incredible space in Soho for customers to feel and experience The Perfect Provenance’s products.

I think that the luxury lifestyle retailer does a great job at showcasing an eclectic blend of fashion and accessories. My favorites pieces are a Floral Trouser by Blumarine, a Le Cabriolet by Perrin Paris Gloria V Neck in Navy & Orange, and a Have Fun Sweater by Blugirl. I also loved the Brass Bangle with Diamond by The Caliber Collection. The signature candles smell amazing with these scents: Sunshine Limone, Prosperite, and Fir Goodness Sake. I’m impressed with everything Perfect Provenance does!

FANCY’s flagship store is located at 57 Bond Street. It will continue to carry The Perfect Provenance’s products for a long time. Be sure to check this wonderful space out!

Dessert Goals: A sweet-toothed paradise

I attended Dessert Goals a couple of weeks ago, and what a sweet adventure it was! The Spring 2019 edition marked the sweet festival’s 6th activation and took place at Sound Studios in Long Island City. It featured a wide assortment of dessert vendors selling chocolate, ice cream, marshmallows, peanut butter cups, cakes, and more. Vendors included Stax Ice Cream, Squish Marshmallow, Matcha n’ More, ROYCE’ Chocolate, Eight Turn Crepe, and 17 other delightful vendors. Desserts ranged from around $5 to $12 each. This fest’s theme was Party Animal and all of the vendors created some amazing and colorful desserts. Some vendors even had animal-inspired confections. Dessert Goals was certainly a sweet aficionado’s dream with a good mix of treats!

In addition to the desserts, guests enjoyed other activations at the event. There was an Instagram Garden everyone could pose in that had custom backdrops. Guests also had access to a complimentary candy bar by Sour Punch and Red Vines. Pop Chips also was on hand giving out savory snacks. In addition, Boxed Water, Sparkling Ice, and Harmless Harvest offered guests free beverages. My/Mo Mochi Ice Cream gave free mochi treats as well.

Dessert Goals proved to be an invigorating, sugar-filled adventure! My favorite dessert was a donut ice cream sandwich from Stax Ice Cream- such a sweet combination! I also enjoyed the matcha chocolate from Royce Chocolate- the perfect amount of sweetness! I’m so glad that I could check the festival out. It allowed guests to sample and purchase a great assortment of desserts from locally based vendors. Looking forward to seeing what’s planned for next year!