Food and Art
|Courtesy of Newton Vineyard|
|The final Touch|
Glassblower, metalworker, lighting designer, motorcycle mechanic artist John Pomp plies many creative trades in his new East Kensington studio. This multiplicity of skills came about by necessity. "You can't buy the equipment needed for glassblowing," he said, gesturing to his handmade furnace glowing red at 2000 degrees Fahrenheit. "It's so specialized there's no market for ready-made equipment, so you have to learn to make it yourself."
A graduate of Tyler School of Art's glassblowing program, Pomp's recent projects include lighting for the Andaz West Hollywood Hotel and accessories collections for Barneys and Neiman Marcus; his first pieces of a furniture collection debut this week at Gallery R'Pure on the edge of Chelsea. In December, Napa Valley winery Newton Vineyard tapped the artist for their second "Eco-Chic" collaboration, a commission to create a limited edition of a functional art object that embodies the winery's culture of sustainable, natural viticulture since its founding in 1977.
A visit to the winery estate inspired the fluid, raindrop shape of "the Touch," a decanter designed specifically for the varietals cultivated in Newton's hillside Spring Mountain vineyard. "When I went to Newton to learn about winemaking," said Pomp, "I felt their natural, organic sensibility in making wine was akin to what I do." Each piece includes 30 percent recycled glass and is entirely mouth-blown and shaped by hand. "Glassblowing hasn't changed much over hundreds of years," said Pomp, who has studied with the Italian maestros of Murano.
After each decanter is blown hot and gently flattened to make it comfortable to hold and pour, Pomp adds his final, literal touch to each piece (pictured). The central dimple serves to aerate Newton's unfiltered wines as well as ensure no two decanters are alike. Pomp likens working with molten glass to winemaking, saying "each piece bears the signature of my handiwork, much like a winemaker's hand shows in every bottle."
"The Touch" ($500) is available in a signed, numbered edition of 100 at newtonvineyard.com.
Everyone has a story to tell, and for foodies, those stories spin on edible axes. This food-centric world takes the main stage when First Person Arts hosts Sunday Supper and Family Lore at Bridget Foy's (200 South St.) next Sunday, April 11, from 6 to 9 p.m.. As part of the Edible World series' home-cooking experiment, Sunday Supper will feature Suzan ColÃ³n, author of Cherries in Winter, for a night of story-telling and a family-style feast featuring ColÃ³n's family recipes.
"Through her story, ColÃ³n learned of her family's history, struggle and resilence," Karina Kacala of FPA tells Meal Ticket. "In the past, we focused on area restaurants, but this portion of the Edible World series celebrates the story of home kitchens and family tradition." Check out FPA's blog to read how Rick Nichols (Philadelphia Inquirer) adopted the recipes of his wife's Slovak/Hungarian-Roumanian family as his own. and keep an eye out for a contribution from Meal Ticket's very own Felicia D next week.
Tickets are $30 for members, $35 for non-members and can be purchased here. Submit a recipe and 250-word story to Kacala (kkacala[at]firstpersonarts.org) by today, April 2, and you could be awarded air time at the event (you must pay admission to be eligible) and have your story featured on ColÃ³n's blog.
Menu after the jump.
Course 1: Split pea soup with grilled ham and frizzled leeks
Course 2: Cadillac meatloaf with bacon, mashed potatoes and asparagus with crimini mushroom gravy
Course 3: Apple cake with spiced pecans and nutmeg whipped cream
Vegetarian options: tomato fennel soup, eggplant napoleon with provolone, broccoli rabe and roasted peppers with marinara sauce
Complimentary glass of wine with dinner
|pottery by Ayumi Horie|
Celebrate seasonality, locality and creativity, all under one sustainable roof. Noble: an American Cookery will host A Useable Feast next Tue., March 30 to benefit the Buy Fresh Buy Local program that educates communities on the value of farming and cooking with local products.
Event organizer Lyla Kaplan of Down to Earth tells us "functional pottery by Jim Dugan, Mel Griffin, Ayumi Horie and Gwendolyn Yoppolo will be placed in the restaurant to be used by guests, creating an active environment where the common experience of eating and drinking becomes a celebration of the interdependence among pottery, food, cooking, and people."
Guests are invited to sip a complimentary ROOT cocktail as they preview the collections from 7 to 8 p.m. A ROOT-infused, four-course dinner will be served family-style after the preview. (Full menu after the jump.) Here, guests may choose a plate from the artists to act as their first course's substructure.
The $85 ticket includes the aforementioned cocktail and beer or wine with dinner. Part of the proceeds will be donated to Buy Fresh Buy Local's PA chapter and other local food organizations. Call 215-568-7000 for reservations.
1ST COURSE (served individually on the potters plates)
GREEN ASPARAGUS, Serrano ham, poached egg with brioche crumbs, coffee and ROOT
2ND COURSE (served family style on platters)
DAYBOAT FLUKE, spring vegetables, shrimp jus flavored with ROOT
3RD COURSE (served family style on platters)
LANCASTER COUNTY DUROC PORK LOIN, spiced and roasted, parsnip, kale, sour orange, rice with chickpea and saffron
4TH COURSE âSWEET COURSEâ (served on individual plates)
SEMOLINA DUMPLING, marinated blackberries, Nutella cream, vanilla ice cream, ROOT gelee
|Courtesy of Moore College|
A student/faculty/staff green mission group at Moore College of Art and Design (1916 Race St.) left its earth-conscious mark on the school's dining room last week. In conjunction with the cafÃ©'s catering service, SAGE Dining, the group has replaced the cafÃ©'s disposable paper products with reusable and recyclable wares made from tempered glass and plastic. To accommodate to-go diners, a limited stock of paper goods is still available.
The Environmental Task Force, which aims to bring eco-awareness and sustainable solutions to the campus, has also initiated campus-wide student art supply trading, recycling programs, the use of more energy-efficient light bulbs and windows and proper art supply/material disposal training for students and faculty.
Now through Aug. 1, the National Constitution Center is hosting "Ancient Rome and America,â an exhibit connecting that storied civilization to modern American via hundreds of artifacts. Gain an exclusive tour followed by a boozy Italian feast on Thu., March 25 from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. Tickets ($149 for non-members, $129 for members) can be purchased by calling 215-409-6700. (Tix to view the just exhibit range from $12 to $20.)
Food like braised short ribs osso bucco style and risotto with porcini mushrooms, parmigiano reggiano and fava beans will be paired with Campanian/Roman-style wines (a.k.a. wines whose juices were extracted by foot-stomping) from Mastroberardino winery, as selected by sommelier Salvatore Galati of Winebow, importers of Mastroberardino. Click here for the full menu and wine selections.
Awhile back, we were boozing at the Khyber and randomly got into a drunken conversation with Harry Baker, a former schoolteacher and current bartender at the Shamrock Pub and Second and Reed. We learned that Baker was a huge admirer of seminal American scribe/very talented drunk Charles Bukowski, and that he wanted to found a holiday honoring the day of his death March 9 that involved people skipping work and hanging out in a bar getting shitfaced and reading poetry. We told him that this sounded like a good idea and went back to our Bulleit.
Turns out Baker is actually making it happen.
This coming Tuesday, March 9, Baker wants to encourage all of y'all to call out, start drinking and make you way to the Triangle Tavern at 10th and Reed, where he's in the process of piecing together a salon of sorts for Bukowski enthusiasts. The inaugural Bukowskifest, for which Baker has started a blog, will involve open readings of original work or Bukowski's writings, music and what we anticipate will be gratuitous alcohol consumption. More details via Baker's blog, which he's dubbed Zombie Bukowski because apparently undead face-rotted Chaz is going to show up next week:
He's been dead for 16 years now and his FLESHY REANIMATED REMAINS are mad as hell at the state of modern poetry. He will be sharing new poems and hosting a poetry open reading dance party on the anniversary of his death March 9, 2010.
At this Festival we will crown the "Bukowski-est" of the evening and he or she will win a HEALTHY CASH PRIZE. Tell your starving poet alcoholic buddies about this opportunity to turn their art into cash. Honored poets will then be invited to the philly regional BUKOWSKIFEST held in AUGUST for an even huger cash prize, intergalactic honor, and the glory of finally letting this demon spawn ZOMBIE BUKOWSKI die a natural death.
There's word of drink specials but no details just yet. Will keep Bukowskites posted.
Let your inner graf writer out with adult beverages in tow tonight at APO Bar + Lounge (102 S. 13th St.), when the cocktail head haven hosts its second annual Wall Party. They've white-washed the brick wall across from the ground-floor bar, which was previously covered with all manner of notes, quotes and drawings, to allow for guests to leave their marks once more. After the party the staff will select their favorite sayings and scribbles and so forth. Those people will receive a TBD prize plus a shoutout on APO's Web site.
Cocktails will be $4, $5 and $6 from 5 to 10; after 10, they'll have wine specials and cocktails will be at $8.
Beverage manager Preston Eckman politely requests that participants avoid writing anything "offensive to anyone's sensibilities, or to their mother." Apparently, they had to re-whitewash a portion of the wall this past Wednesday after someone scrawled something highly colorful colourful. Come on, y'all.
Aaron Ultimo over at Ultimo Coffee (1900 S. 15th St.) already has some pretty bad-ass branding â but now he's looking for someone to submit a design for a new T-shirt. All designs must contain some form of the eagle logo (above), the words "Ultimo Coffee" and can use a maximum of two colors. Send your design in .jpg format to aaron[at]ultimocoffee.com by Feb. 17. If your design is picked, you'll get one of your tees, plus a $100 credit at Ultimo. That's alotta Counter Culture!
And here's an update on the liquor license saga of Brew, Ultimo's boozier half. Last time we checked in, Brew's owner John Longacre told us that they were on course to start offering their mix-a-six craft beer selection on Jan. 30. Well, that didn't happen â even though everything is in order with Brew's neighborhood approval, the PLCB has requested they submit a signed document stating Brew's official hours of operation, and its intent to have an ID-swiping verification machine on the premises. The Board passed on a request to an LCB lawyer to draw up the document, but Longacre is unsure if it'll be ready for the LCB's Feb. 10 meeting. In other words, yet another flaming hoop. "Mind you, I'm president of the Philadelphia Tavern Owners Association," says Longacre, "and I've never seen anything so ridiculous."
|Photo l Michael Persico|
|Isabella Rosselli and Stephen Starr pose for photo call|
Elite Chase Sapphire credit card members were treated to an uncommonly star-struck evening at Tangerine restaurant last night, when the Sundance Channel hosted a screening of Big Night, the critically acclaimed, food-focused indie flick starring Isabella Rossellini.
Rossellini and restaurant potentate Stephen Starr attended last' nights party in advance of Sundance's Tastemakers series, a collection of vignettes featuring influential persons in their fields (watch Starr's here) and Sunday night showings (10 p.m.) of award-winning films from festivals around the world.
Meal Ticket had a chance to speak with actress, model, director and writer Rossellini just before the screening; we used our two minutes to find out what role food plays in the beauty icon's life. Read the interview after the jump.
Meal Ticket: Green Porno, the short-film series you directed, wrote, produced and starred in for Sundance Channel, explores the sex life of marine animals and insects. Some of the films begin with scenes in the kitchen, moving on to the native habitats of the marine creatures -- when we return to the kitchen, your character has lost her appetite. Were you a vegetarian prior to or after this project?
Isabella Rossellini: The series is 18 short films; they are not all the same. Originally it was just the sex life of marine animals, but once a marine biologist got involved he thought we should have a more explicit environmental message. And of course, part of Sundance's mission is to experiment with new formats -- films for the Web, for phones.
I am almost a vegetarian. I do eat organic chicken and am careful what fish I select. There is a problem of overfishing; you have to ask questions. The place where you buy your fish should have the answers to questions like, where is this salmon from? Vendors should know this.
MT: What influence can these short films have on viewer's eating habits?
IR: You know, I think of myself as an entertainer. I am not an activist. That said, I did want to try to frame an environmental message in a comical way. The environmental message can be very... doomsday. Sundance makes these environmental films as part of their mission; it is a valid attempt to educate.
MT: Italians are often stereotyped as food-lovers. Is meal time and eating together very important to your family?
IR: No. My family life is not centered around food; but of course food is very important. I think being Italian influenced my taste -- you know, not eating processed foods, never anything from cans, TV dinners.
MT: I wonder if anyone eats TV dinners anymore.
IR: You know, I used to buy them as a kind of touristic attraction, when my friends from Italy would visit. We never had anything like that in Italy, and they would react with absolute horror.
MT: Do you enjoy cooking for yourself and eating at home?
IR: I do eat at home alot. Mostly so I know where it's from! Of course, I have a housekeeper, but I can cook better!
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