Category: New York

Year-End Roundup

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As 2015 was NOT a year full of blogging (apologies! excuses! regrets!), you may be wondering what exactly I’ve been up to. From fun fashion test shoots to editorial and advertising clients, it was a busy year. I did more travel writing than ever before, with stories about Hawaii such as the new-found popularity of taro and the best food trucks on the North Shore, and got out and about to Miami, Iowa, Kauai, New York City, and Uruguay. Those photos will just have to be shown in the nuevo año!

So here’s to a rollercoaster year of professional ups and personal downs – a year I must say will be difficult to leave behind. Though all one can do is move forward, sometimes all I want is to rewind. Looking uncertainly at the horizon of 2016 ahead, the only thing I can be sure of – and excited for – is it will be full of TRAVEL. Pack your bags!

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Photo Shoot: Autumn’s Blush

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I hope you properly enjoyed a day full of dining and wining for Turkey Day. Whether you’re preparing for Black Friday or just lazing about on the couch, I thought I’d bring you some seasonal fashion inspiration. Fall seemed to have been buried under layers of snow for some, so maybe my newest cover story for Tantalum Magazine‘s November issue will bring back the fantasy of that fall feeling.

“Autumn’s Blush” for Tantalum Magazine. Stylist: Kardia Williams. Hair/Makeup: Veronika Robova. Model: Shelby Israel at RED Models.

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Winter Warm Up with Hot Pot

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As the temperatures drop, it’s time to start dreaming of hot pot. There’s nothing better than sharing a pot of spicy broth and mountains of meat, seafood, and veggies with friends on the coldest of days. If you haven’t tried this Chinese specialty yet, get your belly ready. Our favorite in the city is Shanghai Tide, where we believe all-you-can-eat hot pot with all-you-can-drink Budweiser is worth the trip out to Flushing. Bottoms up!

Shanghai Tide, 135-20 40th Rd, Flushing, NY 11354

 

 

A Tour of a Brooklyn Neighborhood: Red Hook

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If you’re a New Yorker you might only know Red Hook from the rare Ikea pilgrimage, but there’s a lot more going on in this southern Brooklyn ‘hood. A few weeks ago I introduced you to my friend and fellow photographer Zack DeZon and shared his picks for what to see, do, and drink in Red Hook, and today I thought I’d share my pics. Who doesn’t want to know about the next soon-to-be-discovered-but-still-secret Brooklyn hotspot? I told you I’d keep you in the loop.

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Local Flavor: Red Hook, Brooklyn

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When I’m in the city, I try to make a pilgrimage down to Red Hook. A pilgrimage it is, after a train and bus ride down to the industrial dock area of Brooklyn, but it’s got a vibe unlike anywhere else in the city. Part desolate, part chic, and one of those places that you need to know where to find the good stuff. My good friend Zack DeZon personifies what you think of New York life: a well-dressed creative living in a beautiful loft in an up-and-coming neighborhood. Who better to show you the sights? Here are his Red Hook picks:
 1. Hometown BBQ: The proprietor of this Texas-style barbecue joint isn’t actually from Texas, but he took a pilgrimage there to study under some of the greats, and it must have worked! Every cut of meat there is delicious, but the brisket and beef ribs stand out above the rest as a culinary experience not to be missed.
 2. Red Hook Winery: When friends visit, I always try swing by this scenic warehouse on the water to take advantage of their $5 tasting menu. The staff is extremely knowledgeable and passionate, and the bold, unique, and sometimes esoteric flavors they get out of oft-maligned grapes like Merlot and Riesling are stupendous.
 3. Pioneer Works: Opened by artist Dustin Yellin, whose open studio is next door, this enormous warehouse and its oddly-sculpted side yard are home to a number of very talented artists working with their studios open for the public’s viewing. Plus, every 2nd Sunday of the month there’s a big party.
 4. Brooklyn Crab: Even though I’m not a huge seafood fan, it makes me happy to have this kitschy three-story crab shack in the neighborhood. It’s just a great spot to have a beer, play some Cornhole, and generally pretend you’re at an actual beach.
 5. Botanica: This cocktail bar has wonderful drinks and atmosphere, but its most notable aspect is the fact that it shares a wall with Cacao Prieto, one of Red Hook’s whiskey and rum distilleries (and a chocolate factory to boot). Most, if not all, of their signature drinks use either Widow Jane whiskeys or Due North Rum, and as an added bonus they even sell Nat Sherman cigars out of the adjacent pop-up shop during the warmer months.
 Oh, and besides being a foodie and tour guide extraordinaire, Zack DeZon is also an amazing photographer. Check out his work here.

Local Getaway: Breakneck Ridge

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Because it’s summer and it’s time to be outside. Because summer in New York City is THE WORST (…and also the best). Because it’s only a short train ride from the city. Because it’s nice to feel like you don’t always live in a concrete box. Really do you need more reasons to finally do the Breakneck Ridge hike?

When we lived in the city this was by far my favorite getaway. Hop on the Metro North Hudson Line to Cold Spring for a short-ish and scenic ride. If you’re organized enough to catch the morning train on the weekend, you get to get off at the Breakneck Ridge station, which isn’t a station at all but rather a tiny wooden platform on the tracks for you to jump onto. And so the adventure begins!

While this hike is not long – only 3.5 miles – the first part starts with the “rock scramble,” so you should probably not be totally out of shape (or at least you will be in shape by the end of it). The rest of the trail meanders through the hilly greenery and out you’ll pop at Cold Springs, a delightfully quaint town full of oldies and small children, delicious ice cream, and the best antiques shopping in the area. (Last time we went I hit up the antiques first, came across a set of dishes I JUST HAD TO HAVE, and we had to leave them at the local bar for safe keeping – and to ensure a drink on the way back.) Here are some pics from our last camping adventure at Breakneck – which is totally not allowed but totally worth it. Happy trails!

For other local getaways from New York City, check out Fire Island, hiking in Pound Ridge, apple picking, and Fort Tilden Beach

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