Do you like Ketchup? I sure do. Ketchup is one of my top-three favorite condiments of all time — up there with Mayonnaise, and Trader Joe’s Green Tomatillo Chili Salsa, which is just insane — and if we are talking about Specialty Ketchups, don’t even get me started. If you can’t get your head around the thought of digging into a plate of crispy French fries without a generous side of ketchup for dipping, then let me introduce you to your new favorite thing: Vodka & Italian Tomato Ketchup from Spirit & Co.
Spirit & Co. is the first company worldwide to exclusively use premium liquor in each of its products. If you are a fan of Penne with Vodka Sauce, you already know that tomato and vodka is a distinctive pairing that delivers an umami flavor comparable to, say, adding truffle oil to almost anything. The flavor is unique and instantly recognizable, and even if you can’t pinpoint how the vodka makes the tomato sauce taste better, you understand that the result is crazy delicious. That said, I am willing to defend myself against accusations of being overly hyperbolic when I say that Spirit & Co.’s Vodka & Italian Tomato Ketchup will ruin you for all other ketchups: because it is absolutely the best ketchup I have eaten in my life.
The Souper Dress, inspired by the iconic Campbell Soup Cans series by Andy Warhol, was imagined and produced by the Campbell Soup Company as a mail order offer and as an effective advertising campaign when paper dresses were all the rage in the 1960s. Two labels from any different variety of Campbell’s Vegetable Soups and $1.00 got you the dress.
The Souper Dress is a classic example where fashion, art and industry intersect into one image. The paper dress captures to perfection the vibrant, youthful, optimistic and consumerist zeitgeist of America in the 1960s . This, then, disposable A-line dress made of screen-printed tissue, wood pulp and rayon mesh with binding tape, is printed with the Campbell’s Soup red, black and white labels. At the back of the neckline is attached the original label that reads: “The Souper Dress/No Cleaning/ No Washing/ It’s carefree fire resistant unless washed or cleaned/To refreshen, press lightly with warm iron/80% Cellulose, 20% Cotton.” Examples of The Souper Dress is excellent condition can sell for as msuch as $8,000 at auction.
Photographed as part of The Exhibit Camp: Notes on Fashion, on View Through September 8th, 2019 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC.
New Photo added January 12, 2020, as this dress is currently displayed in the exhibit In Pursuit of Fashion: The Sandy Schreier Collection, on through May 17th, 2020.
Above Image Courtesy of Jubilee, All Other Photos By Anne Raso.
Do you like French food? I sure do. Recently, I was invited to dine with a couple of friends at Jubilee, an authentic French eatery that’s just a short trip up First Avenue from my east village flat. Owned and operated by Eric Macaire, head chef Luc Holie (formerly of the late, great L’Absinthe) and his amicable wife Ilda (the couple hail from Montpelier and Paris, respectively), Jubilee is a neighborhood gem whose warmly decorated interior is elegant while remaining comfortable, cozy and charming. I felt welcome right away.
Jubilee has a huge following for its fresh Mussels (Moules), prepared with your choice of sauces including Marinière, Curry, Poulette, Catalane, Dijonnaise, Citronnée, Tomato Basil, Asian and Calvados (or choose a trio of sauces). Mussels are served ala carte for $17 or with French FriesorSalad for $23.50. Keep that in mind if you have friends who are mussels fans!
Enjoy these photos of our menu choices!
As a first course, I enjoyed the Terrine de Foie Gras de Canard avec Compote de Fruit ($19), Chef Luc’s Homemade Terrine of Duck Foie Gras with a Balsamic Reduction and Fruit Chutney. The generous portion of this buttery Foie Gras is ultra creamy and mild, with the tart balsamic presenting a nice flavor counterpoint. The bright sweetness of the fruit chutney is also nice complement, and adds welcome texture. This dish is very rich and I suggest sharing so as not to dampen your appetite for your main course.
Both of my dining companions ordered the Salade de Tomates d’Heritage avec Mozzarella et Vinaigrette au Balsamique ($13). This fresh Heirloom Tomato Salad with Mozzarella and Balsamic Dressing arrives drizzled extra virgin olive oil and sprinkled with fresh basil, with a toasted baguette “crouton” garnish.
Fish lovers might enjoy the Loup de Mer aux Tagliatelles de Courgettes, Bouillon de Tomate Séchée ($29), Striped Bass, Zucchini Tagliatelles and Sundried Tomato Broth. The fish arrives with a gorgeous, browned crispy skin!
Meat lovers have plenty to choose from on Jubilee’s extensive menu. The Steak de “Black Angus”($35) is a Grass Fed 10 oz Black Angus Steak, served with French Fries and Salad, with choice of Green Peppercorn or Bearnaise Sauce. One of my friends chose to substitute her fries for a side of fresh sauteed Brussels Sprouts, as she was watching her carbs. The requested, off-menu substitution was made with a smile!
Take a look at this luscious Côte de Boeuf ($40), a Grass Fed 14 oz Rib-Eye Steak, which was my entree. Also served with French Fries, Salad and a choice of Green Peppercorn or Bearnaise Sauce, we asked for both sauces and shared them. Divine! The meat was perfectly marbled with an excellent exterior char, and the crispy french fries were plentiful. The classic French bistro meal of Steak Frites surely does not get better than this.
I finished off a very satisfying meal with a favorite French dessert that was too tempting to resist: Profiterolles au Chocolat ($11), a trio of perfect profiteroles, consisting of ultra-light and delicate choux pastry balls filed with vanilla ice cream, garnish with toasted almonds, and served with a dish of warm chocolate sauce to drizzle over the top. So indulgent! Other delectable desserts on the menu include Molten Chocolate Cake with Caramel Ice Cream ($11), Classic Crème Brulée with Cointreau ($10), and a delicious baked dessert made with fresh berries, Gratin de Framboises (Raspberry Gratin) for $11, among many more sweet choices.
For those with not so much of a sweet tooth, Jubilee offers a cheese plate with your choice of three cheeses, accompanied by sliced fruit, nuts, field greens and an assortment of homemade breads — which would almost be ideal as a light lunch or afternoon snack! At the end of our meal, we were also presented with a small plate loaded with tiny homemade Madeleine cakes, still warm from the oven and dusted with confectioners’ sugar – what a very special treat!
Jubilee has an extensive menu with dishes to please every palate. They also host a popular weekend Boozy Brunch ($28.50) that I would love to try with a few friends. I’m excited to have discovered Jubilee, my new go-to place to enjoy all of my favorite French dishes and great service! Bon appetite!
Jubilee is located at 948 First Avenue (at 52nd Street) in Manhattan. Phone: 212-888-3569. For reservations, menus, and more information, visit This Link!
Mitchell-Innes & Nash is currently hosting the first major painting retrospective of Tom Wesselmann in New York since the artist’s death in 2004. Organized in partnership with the Tom Wesselmann Estate, the exhibition examines Wesselmann’s role as the great innovator of the American Pop generation and includes a dozen significant works spanning the artist’s career from 1961-2004. Gallery owner Lucy Mitchell-Innes explains that with this exhibition, they hope to show how Wesselmann has filtered the canonical subjects of art — still life, the nude and the landscape — through a unique and personal lens using the media and technical innovation of the sixties, seventies and eighties, offering new possibilities for painting.
Tom Wesselmann is one of the leading figures of Pop Art who used collage, assemblage and shaped canvases to usher in a new vocabulary of painting. He is best known for his career-spanning series, Great American Nude, which featured female figures in intensely saturated interiors.
The works in the exhibition highlight a number of techniques that Wesselmann pioneered, and which are largely unseen among his Pop contemporaries. In an interior still life from 1964, Wesselmann incorporates a functional fan and a clock into the canvas, (see image below) pushing the boundaries of collage and assemblage in a sly nod to the notion of the ‘represented’ object.
Collages from the 1960s feature cut-outs from advertising billboards. Also included in the show are Wesselmann’s steel-cut works (a technique he helped develop), molded plastic paintings (a technique borrowed from commercial signage and used here in the context of fine art for the first time), and his iconic shaped canvases.
Being a fantastic introduction to Tom Wesselmann (should you not already be familiar with his work) this is a very cool and worthwhile exhibit to add to your next art crawl during the month of May.
The Tom Wesselmann Retrospective will be on view through May 28, 2016 at Mitchell-Innes & Nash, Located at 534 West 26th Street, in the Chelsea Gallery District.
It’s hard to believe that Halloween is coming up in just over a month. Scary! Maybe you are already on the look out for delicious and festively themed foods to stock your Halloween party buffet. For the adventurous culinary artists out here, I suggest trying this unique take on the classic Caprese Salad with a side of olive eyeballs! To me, it looks like a little owl, and would probably be a fun recipe to make with your kids. I’m hungry already!
Meeting with Gail to do an interview for my band’s bio was the kind of experience where I immediately felt like I knew her, without ever having met her before. She pressed ‘record’ on her mini-cassette, we popped open a couple cans of Bud, and proceeded to talk for the next hour about all kinds of things. That’s the kind of interview that all artists hope to do and, in-turn, it’s the kind of interview people want to read. Gail was totally prepared, engaging, relaxed, and most importantly, honest. Interviews shouldn’t be about what my favorite color is, they should be about what is going at the time of the interview… and that isn’t even an issue with Gail.