All Purpose Dark

Monday, December 31, 2007

Besties

It's been a wild and wacky year here at All Purpose Dark HQ. We've been to China a couple of times, thrown in a few trips to Israel, eaten lots of nice things, met wonderful people and been to a hefty share of events. In the spirit of the ubiquitous "best of" lists, here's a little trip down memory lane for the best of APD for 2007.
Best Slow Food in Israel.
Best exchange with Anthony Bourdain.
Best condo cake.
Best upscale Spanish meal (sub-prize for best anchovies).
Best concert.
Best reason to clean out your closet.
Best "Kabbalah Cuisine."
Best event featuring Miami's green personalities.
Best bicycle in Beijing.
Best bakery in San Francisco.
Best bakery in Jerusalem.
Best local designer.
Best last visit to the Sheraton Bal Harbour.
Best limoncello tasting.
Best night in Macau.
Best magazine launch party.
Best fashion show.
And, lastly, I know this one is from '06 but I couldn't resist: Best outfit ever.

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New Year's: Party Like a Rock Star?

So tonight we bid adieu to 2007 and welcome in good ole '08. The past couple of years I have not been at home for New Year's, usually I'm abroad. Last year we celebrated New Year's with a bunch of sloppy Americans staying at Kibbutz Kafar Giladi on the border with Lebanon. Maccabee beer is a wonderful thing. Tonight I think we'll just stay home and force our friends to play Cranium, the best game ever invented. If you're more in the mood to party like a hotel heiress, check the links below.
  • Parties at China Grill, Tuscan Steak and Blue Door.
  • The "Ice Ball" at Mokai.
  • Oceana benefit at La Marea.
  • A feast at Mark's South Beach.
  • Plum's New Year's forecast.
  • And for those of you in Boca or Delray, some options.

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Saturday, December 29, 2007

Foreign Devils Trailer

Hey friends, our little Beijing movie is finished. We're getting the word out, submitting it to festivals, and hoping that it will steal the hearts of indie film lovers the around the world. So here's the trailer for Foreign Devils. Curious to hear your thoughts. If you like what you see spread the word. You can even "friend us" on Myspace.

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Friday, December 28, 2007

Kobe Club: Opening January 4

Kobe Club is coming to Miami. There will be swords. There will be beef.
More info here.

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Krelwear Sale!

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Thursday, December 27, 2007

Atrio @ The Conrad Miami

The Conrad Hotel's Atrio restaurant enters 2008 with a facelift, a new lounge called Level 25 and a new menu by exec chef Michael Gilligan (formerly of Rumi). The lounge is space age-chic with yellow leather banquettes, a frosted glass bar and a sparkling raw bar. The restaurant's redesign includes a more open dining room and the addition of an inviting wine room with a Tuscan-style large wooden table ready for tastings and private dinners.
Atrio's spot on the 25th floor is supremely impressive. Views of glittering Brickell skyscrapers and nautical traffic are the closest we get to Hong Kong-type cityscapes and Miami feels like a big city from that perch. And the food? Impeccably prepared, graciously served and expertly flavored. Here's what we had:
Tuna Tataki with yuzu-miso dressing, crispy wonton and jicama-mint salad. A nicely composed dish with textural contrast between the jicama and silky nori-wrapped tuna.

Sautéed Green And White Asparagus with red and golden beets, baby bok choy and port wine & dried fig chutney. I am a sucker for figs (must be the Middle Eastern in me) and these did not dissapoint - sweet and chewy, they were a perfect foil to the beets and asparagus. And it's so nice to see figs on a Miami menu!
Oven Roasted Chilean Sea Bass red thai coconut curry, jasmine & vegetable rice pilaf. The fish was crispy - I love that. Why can't more restaurants do that with fish? I expected the coconut curry to be milky but I think this was an interesting variation, and did not sacrifice flavor.

Lavender Dusted Rack Of Lamb with honey and tamarind mashed potatoes and apricot-jalapeño jus. The verdict on this one was that it was delicious but difficult to handle since it is presented unsliced.
And for dessert a "cafe con leche" which was molten chocolate lava-style cake except it was white chocolate with coffee which is a refreshing change from the ubiquitous chocolate variety. The home made cookies n' cream ice cream was divine.

Atrio is at 1395 Brickell Ave at the Conrad Hotel.

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Spiegelworld's Absinthe: Impressions


Caught the Miami debut of Spiegelworld's Absinthe last Thursday night. Loved it. I think no one in the audience had any idea of what to expect and everyone was quite jazzed. The show has been described as everything from "Moulin Rouge meets Rocky Horror Picture Show" to a cabaret variety show combined with a lewd comedy revue and indeed it is all of those things. But the most salient aspect of the show is that it is pure entertainment. For about 2 hours you are completely and utterly dazzled by the various trapeze artists (scantily-clothed), acrobats, tumblers, novelty-act performers, and borsch-belt comedians - that is courtesy of a character called the Gazillionaire, the show's host decked out in a cheesy tux and gold tooth.
The 75 year-old tent is gorgeous - all Weimar chic with velvet and teak and a cozy booths circling the main sitting area where you can hide out if you don't want to be too close to the stage. And you may not want to get too close because performers have a knack for interacting with and playing off the audience. Put is this way - drinking during the show is encouraged. But the whole circus never gets too sloppy or frivolous despite all the debauchery which is a testament to the extremely talented cast and crew. Experiencing the show is like taking a trip back in time, to scenes from movies like the Illusionist and Invincible where people were entertained by clever personalities who had nothing more at their disposal than their wits and brilliant tricks.

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Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Cleopatra!

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Sunday, December 23, 2007

South Beach Food Fest Updates

For those who didn’t score tickets to the Grand Tasting Village, which says SOLD OUT online, they can still get access to the Grand Tasting by purchasing a Wine Lover’s Weekend Pass, which cost $965 per person. Also, just like any big event, Broadway show, etc. the festival has held back blocks of tickets for the major events – Bubble Q, Sugar Shack, etc. – which will go into circulation/on sale after the New Year/closer to the fest so folks should stay vigilant and keep an eye on the website.

Also, just announced: Rachael Ray and Jamie Oliver, two of the major players at this year’s Fun & Fit as a Family (tickets still available for that as well) will be doing a combined demo at the Kellogg’s Kidz Kitchen tent on Sunday at 10:30 a.m. Ticket price: $35 per person.

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Saturday, December 22, 2007

Table 8 South Beach

Had been curious about Table 8 for a while and finally had a chance to check it out recently. The restaurant is quite impressive, and though it's a bit pricey, you'd have a hard time not walking out satisfied and maybe even a bit radiant from the experience. Plus, Govind Armstrong has such an appealing way with ingredients, it's worth it just to observe the delicacy and balance of each dish.

Consider his tuna tartar, composed of glistening cubes of locally-caught yellowfin tuna, lightly dressed with artisanal olive oil and kissed with fleur de sel for a refreshing textural contrast. The delicate mound of fish is accompanied by asparagus spears roasted to concentrate their sweetness set down on slightly wilted, slightly bitter frisée. The burrata mozzarella salad, a signature dish, is a revelation of flavors and textures composed of the milky runny cheese, heirloom tomatoes and wild arugula, topped with olive oil fried croutons. The kobe style beef is probably one of the finest plates of beef one can order in South Beach and from the looks of the dining room on a recent weeknight, it was a popular dish. Local grouper is accompanied by spring bean ragout which pairs well with the meaty fish, it's flavor enhanced by arugula pesto.

Desserts are just as well-conceived as the savory selections. A carrot cake with cream cheese mousse, candied pecans and citrus reduction sang with nutty, fruity notes that offset the richness of the mousse.

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Friday, December 21, 2007

New Year's Oceana Benefit at La Marea

For socially conscious party people who want an eco-friendly start to the New Year, La Marea at The Tides South Beach will host a celebration benefiting of the world’s oceans. The event marks the kick-off of the partnership between The Tides and Oceana, the largest international organization working solely to protect the world’s oceans. A five-course dinner features sustainable seafood such as Alaskan sablefish and Maine lobster, followed by cocktails and entertainment.
Dinner is $250 per seat, benefiting Oceana.
When: Monday December 31, 2007 (New Years Eve)
6:00 PM Welcome Toast
6:30 PM Dinner
9:00 PM Countdown to 2008
La Marea at The Tides, 1220 Ocean Drive.
RSVP by December 17 to Stacy Schanen stacy.schanen@thetidesresorts.com
or call 305.604.5067

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Thursday, December 20, 2007

Modern Menorahs

Dwell's slideshow of modern menorahs.

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Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Opening Party @ Domo Japones


Domo Japones held a splendid opening party last night. Lots of little plates of impeccable sushi and Japanese treats were available. The crowd was urbane and charming and the champagne was a'flowin. No less than four sushi chefs were constantly churning out delectable rolls like the "Italiano" made with marinated red pepper, avocado and tuna. Below, tuna sashimi with wasabi paste and pea tendrils. Arigato! Tomas has more pics.

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Rummage Sale

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Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Rocco's Med Style

One of the more compelling Top Chef episodes this past season involved Rocco DiSpirito guest-judging the cheftestants ability to approximate Bertolli frozen meals. Interestingly, creating delicious, non-mushy frozen pasta dishes proved to be quite a challenge as some of the talented toques struck out with the mission. I was recently granted some marketing love from the folks at Bertolli and asked to sample the frozen meals (look for that post soon).
Here Rocco devotes one of his webisodes to the virtues of the Bertolli products.

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Ain't No Party Like a Basel Party Cuz the Basel Party Don't Stop

MediaBistro's Design blog UnBeige has some fun overheards from the Mazel Basel parade. Here's a smattering:

Guy at Photo Miami walking around with a computer and a phone, and apparently, with a live feed to his class.
Guy: Want to say hello to my students? We have to do it two ways--by phone and by picture. This is my new media class.

Art shopper: How much for the shoes?
Dealer: $275,000

Ultrathin "booth babe" on the convention center floor gazes at a painting; potential male client gazes at her.
Booth Babe: It really is a beautiful piece.
Male Client: You look amazing. Have you lost weight?

Festivalgoer: Are you here for the art or the Basel?

Father talking to his young daughter as they walk dazedly out of Art Basel on Sunday evening:
But if we bought that painting, we probably couldn't afford to send you to college.

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Monday, December 17, 2007

Food at the MAM Ball


Zowie! Joyce Wallace Catering knows how to put out some mighty fine fare for the artsy folks. This year the Miami Art Museum ball was held in an air conditioned tent at Bicentennial Park in celebration of the museum's future designs for the site. Here are some pics of the tasty pre-dinner bites. My favorite was the french toast topped with melted brie and almonds (above).
Below is Asian beef on baby spinach leaves - elegant presentation.

And lamb topped with apricot chutney.

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Buy This Bag!

My latest fave purse is the super-stylin Ecoist candy-wrapper clutch. It's the perfect size for going out - it fits exactly what I need (phone, wallet, small digital cam) and matches practically every ensemble. And it is a hellacious hit with all my gal pals and every random fashionista I meet. But the best reason for carrying this shiny eye-catching bag is that the company is earth-loving and creates these mini masterpieces using recycled, organic, or earth-friendly materials. I first met the Ecoist founders when organizing the Green Flamingos event and since then I have become a die-hard fan. Plus, when you buy a bag, they plant a tree. Plus, the owners are Israeli. Love!

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Bentley Concept Car

Israeli designer Dror Benshetrit's concept car design for Bentley. Unveiled at a swank party at Art Basel. Reminds me of the Batmobile. Will it get made? Does it matter?

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New Year's at Mark's South Beach

I still have yet to make New Year's plans - sharing a bottle of wine with friends is how I like to roll but if I was in the mood for a splurge the menu at Mark's South Beach would do it. From the press release:
Passed hors d’ oeuvres on terrace include crispy duck won-tons with mango honey dip, Chilled heirloom tomato soup with basil foam and tuna ceviche stuffed tostones with avocado purée.
And the four course menu features delights like Gorgonzola cheese tartlet with poached seckle pear and 25 year aged balsamic, Boston salad with toffee pistachios, goat cheese and mulberries with ice wine vinaigrette and Kobe beef rib-eye with crispy onions, rainbow swiss chard, truffle duchess potatoes.
And for dessert? Spiced apple phyllo crisp with cinnamon infused ice cream and pinot noir-dried cherry sauce OR frozen chocolate terrine, chocolate-chocolate chip petit cake, red berry sherbet, candied orange salsa, and vanilla crème anglaise.
$250 PP PLUS TAX AND SERVICE
INCLUDES OPEN LIQUOR BAR 9-1am, DJ OUTSIDE ON TERRACE,
PLASMA TV IN DINING ROOM TO WATCH BALL DROP
Hotel Nash, 1120 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach. Telephone: (305) 604-9050.

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Sunday, December 16, 2007

Like Pigs in a Sausage Factory....

David Amsden has a great piece in the NYTimes on taking global field trips to art fairs. A nice summation of Art Bazz Miami Beach:
Ever since its inception, in 2002, Miami Basel has had this reputation: a carnival of excess for anyone seeking a vaguely highbrow justification to head somewhere warm in winter. And what about the art? In the morning, I made my way to the juggernaut of the fair, the Miami Beach Convention Center, where the museum-quality work is bought and sold with alarming, garage-sale efficiency. Ostensibly only a minority of the 40,000 attendees had the means and connections necessary to actually purchase art, but those who were there to shop, like Steve Martin and Martha Stewart, had a way of dominating the mood. “Oh, my God, this would look so great in my friend’s bedroom!” I overheard a polished blonde yelp as she stared at a $40,000 abstract painting from a Japanese gallery. “I need to text her right now!” Fifty feet away, a middle-aged man was hollering into the cellphone embedded in his ear: “Look, they say the price is $500,000 and they’re just not budging.” Frustrated pause. “But Dad!”

You encounter a lot of this sort of thing in the convention center — fleetingly comical exchanges that quickly leave you feeling hollow, eager to send some money to the Red Cross. Walking around, I started to understand why some artists who come to the fair describe it as a pummeling few days necessary for career advancement. (John Currin reportedly compared artists at Miami Basel to pigs in a sausage factory.)

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Saturday, December 15, 2007

Krelwear Sample Sale

Local designer Karelle Levy is cleaning house! Head over to her Krelwear showroom in Wynwood and snap up the deals - I kid you not, I walked out of there with three gorgeous one-of-a-kind tops for $20 each! Located in the heart of Wynwood Art District, on 25th Street, just stop in and grab some duds at amazing prices. Everything is discounted at up to 75% off!
Free gift with purchase of $50 or more!
180 NW 25th Street
Miami, FL 33127
(305) 576-7465

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Friday, December 14, 2007

More UFC Octagon Book Launch Fun


The book is an immense 20.5 by 26 inches – it’s nearly four feet across when opened - with over 800 of the most incredible high-resolution UFC fight images you’ll ever see. Cost: $2,500. It's called Octagon.
Photography by Los Angeles artist, Kevin Lynch
Foreword by playwright, David Mamet
Essay by renowned art critic, Dave Hickey
Published by powerHouse Books More info here.

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Hot Sauces @ Lime


Nothing better than a dozen choices of hot sauce. Thank you, Lime.

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Thursday, December 13, 2007

Tory Burch @ Bal Harbour Shops


Here's the designer at her official opening party at the Bal Harbour Shops last month. Supersweet and sunny. Love the preppy-chic goods. Fab party.

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Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Design Miami


More photos courtesy of Adrienne. These are mainly of Design Miami's Designer of the Year Tokujin Yoshioka's top floor installation at the Moore Building. At first, I was surprised to hear he had received the award (over other Asian designers like Naoto Fukasawa or Shuwa Tei). But I think part of the intention in giving him the award was to highlight him as a less obvious choice. Perhaps Design Miami thinks they'll boost his career (and the profile of the fair in turn?). In any case, Tokujin brought it. Everyone was loving the installation. The plastic straws were poetically simple but I was won over by the white honeycomb chair.

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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Feel the Foreign Devils Love

New friend and fellow Miami blogger Verticus from Miami Vision Blogarama has a nice post about our film Foreign Devils. So far, he's our biggest fan, and he's only seen the trailer.

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Baseling with the Times

The NYTimes has a kick-ass video chronicling the fair and its ancillary arty-ness. Aptly titled "Fun at the Fair" it's a nice 2-minute piece. They also gave New York mag's Basel blog a run for their money with their coverage on the T magazine site. Go Gray Lady, go!

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Monday, December 10, 2007

A Quiet Basel Moment


Design District, Saturday night. Shot by APD guest photographer Adrienne Adar, back from covering the World Mustache Competition (check out her blog - it's a facial hair museum of wackiness).

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Feel the Blogger Love

Had a lovely evening last night at the Miami blogger holiday party organized by the fantastically thoughtful crew over at MiamiBeach411 (thanks Gus and Michelle!). We feasted on Tuscan Steak fare (roasted chicken, spicy broccoli, wild mushroom risotto, Gorgonzola gnochhi and, of course, steak) and there was lots of blogger love to go around. I got to bond with Christian from Fanless over the Sobe party scene, connected with Dan Renzi over Basel gossip and had a chance to put faces to blogs which is always a nice thing. It was great to finally meet Rick from Stuck on the Palmetto and talk blogger suicide (can you believe he almost called the whole thing kaput a few weeks ago?) and to chat with Restaurant Gal about the blogging lifestyle. Loved talking with Verticus from Miami Vision Blogarama about his ideas for a better Miami (the Miami monorail is genius) and to everyone's delight Miami Fever was there, a supersweet guy and so modest about his masterful photography.
I stayed for three hours and it was one of those nights where you look at your watch and you can't believe it's so late because you've been having a great time. It was a great way to cap off my weekend of Basel bacchanalia. Thanks again, Gus!

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Food at Basel

Finding good eats at Basel events is often a survival-of-the-fittest proposition. Too many people, lots of free booze and not enough nibbles to go around can quickly hamper a fun night. So we have become Darwinian nightlife beasts and managed to snag choice bites at various events around town. Thursday night's Seven for All Mankind Conde Nast party yielded delectable treasures including truffle cheese fries, olive mini-paninis and luscious tuna tartar. The Raleigh's Russia Miami party Friday night was a shmorgasboard of Rusky delights with several cabanas overflowing with platters of cheeses, candied fruits, smoked fish and caviar. Below are some highlights.

A dessert platter at In Fashion '07 event Monday night.
As is always the case with party food, the more fried the better. Below, fried lobster tail at the Setai of rthe UFC book launch event.

Also at the Setai and also fried - mini beignet-type things. Also known as donut holes to those of us who were weaned on Dunkin Donuts and Entemann's.

Tomato-goat cheese pastry puffs.

And duck dumplings.

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Saturday, December 08, 2007

Basel Events for Saturday

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Design Matters with Debbie Millman

The Wolfsonian hosts Debbie Millman, a renowned branding expert, designer and writer, who will moderate a "Design Matters" live session with Vancouver-based illustrator/designer Marian Bantjes, Miami-based Carlos Perez, the core of Elastic People, and George Mill, the Publikum Calendar Creative Director who started the project. Publikum Calendar 2008: Guide for Living features works by 12 world-renowned designers and is one of the most extraordinary calendars in the world. The event is free and open to the public.

Saturday, December 8 at 3:30 p.m at the Wolfsonian
1001 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach.

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UFC Book Launch @ The Setai



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Friday, December 07, 2007

Pucci Brunch

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Galerie Bertin Toublanc

Lots of good stuff to see at Galerie Bertin Toublanc last night. Pieces from China and India are super-hot and super everywhere. The gallery is massive.


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In Fashion '07 at the Surfcomber


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Basel Events for Friday

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Friday: Gen Art's Vanguard

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Thursday, December 06, 2007

Manolo Valdes Sculpture Garden


Organized through the City of Miami Beach Art in Public Places program Manolo Valdés in Miami Beach is on view free to the public through February 28, 2008 on Washington Avenue and 17th Street. In part, the exhibit consists of four sculptures depicting female heads offset by dynamic ornamental head-pieces. Two of the four works, all which measure over 13-feet high, were recently exhibited for the first time in the United States at Bryant Park in New York.

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FM @ Upper East Side Garden

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Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Efff Art, Let's Dance

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Persian Art!

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

In the Mood for a "flowtini"?

Opening Reception for flow
Wednesday
December 5 from 6 to 10 p.m.

flow Miami 2007 relocates to the newly redone Dorset Hotel and features 30 exhibitors from 25 cities. The work shown will be from emerging, mid-career and well established artists. Hours are Weds Noon to 6 p.m.; Thurs 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Fri & Sat 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sun 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Opening reception features DJ and drinks, or stop by any night from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. for a "flowtini" or Budselect, compliments of Anheuser Busch.

The Dorset Hotel, 1720 Collins Avenue, South Beach.

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Temporary Restaurant at Art Miami

Palate by Touch Catering Restaurant.
Adjacent to the Art Miami tent will be Palate, a five-day-only restaurant conceived especially for Art Miami by Sean Brasel, the chef of the popular South Beach eatery, Touch Restaurant. With entrées priced between $7 and $13, Palate will be open December 4 from 3:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.; December 5 through December 7 from noon p.m. to 7:00 p.m.; December 8 from noon p.m. to 6:00 p.m. and December 9 from noon to 5:00 p.m.

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Basel Events for Tuesday

Vine Wine Shop Basel Tasting

Vine Wine Shop hosts an Art Basel wine tasting and unlike their usual monthly tastings, this one is free! While you're there, pick up a pint of wine ice cream ($5.95). It comes in 4 flavors: Strawberry Cream Chardonnay, Chocolate Amaretto Cream Sherry,Raspberry Merlot Cheesecake, and Chocolate Cabernet Sauvignon.

Wednesday, December 5th, 7-9 pm
Art Basel “Vine Flight Nite”!

Join us for a night of Art & Wine -- at Vine Wine Shop @ our Tasting Loft. This evening enjoy a flight of (6) wines from around the world that will make your senses spin!
(NO CHARGE + 10% all wine purchases)
Miami’s Upper Eastside neighborhood wine shop.

7657 Biscayne Boulevard • 305-759-8463

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Monday, December 03, 2007

And the Prize for Best Invite Goes To...

ARTINFO has the top 5 Basel invitations. The chocolate bar courtesy of the Wolfsonian takes the cake, er, chocolate...

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GINZATROPICALIA: Graffiti Gone Global

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All DADA, All Week Long

The Wolfsonian's graphic design for these DADA flyers is off the hook in terms of aesthetic prowess. If you have a chance to stop by and hear the Ballet Mechanique - do it! I experienced it Saturday night and was duly impressed with its cacophonous beauty.

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Lei Marco Fashion Show at Karu and Y

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MAM Lecture Tuesday

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In Fashion '07

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Basel in the Blogs

Matt Meltzer has a funny take on Art Bazz bacchanalia over at MiamiBeach411.
And long lost Miami Nights blogger Duran pipes in with a fair rundown at Miami Nights.

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Poplife's Art Basel Party

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Art Basel: A Playground for the Picasso Set

The Wall Street Journal chimes in with an obligatory Basel-is-an-art-party-we-mean-uh-art-fair story.
In addition to the art-world set, a coterie of trans-Atlantic socialites, celebrities and hangers-on will fly into Miami during the coming days to indulge in what has become known as the wildest week of beach bacchanalia around. Last year, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Michael Douglas, Keanu Reeves and Kanye West made appearances at parties, and this year, David Byrne, Russell Simmons, Marc Ecko and Amy Sol are all expected to show up.
A quote from Jimmy Choo CEO Tamara Mellon:
Ms. Mellon, who bought a Basquiat painting two years ago and considers herself a sometime-collector, says that while she didn't buy any work last year, she has promised herself to shop more seriously this time around -- at least, when she isn't out partying at Soho House's late-night lounge on Collins Avenue. "I'm fascinated by the contemporary-art world," she says. "And I love the Miami fairs -- everyone is sitting outside the Raleigh, you see people you haven't seen in ages, it's all laughter and fun -- the whole thing is like a sophisticated, grown-up spring break!"

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Timon Balloo, Domo Japones

Timon Balloo’s resume would make most culinary hopefuls green with envy. He's worked in the kitchens of Miami chefs Allen Susser, Tim Andriola and Michelle Bernstein and had stints at SushiSamba in New York and Miami’s celebrated La Broche. Born to Chinese and Trinidadian parents, and possessed of an insatiable curiosity for complex flavor profiles, Balloo is a refreshing addition to Miami's dining scene. His latest gustatory undertaking will be helming the new Domo Japones, a swanky sushi bistro in the Design District. With a seasonally influenced menu that will have locavores swooning and Japanese delicacies like seaweed bread, miso cappuccino soup and wasabi-spiked chocolate desserts, the restaurant will be attracting the food-savvy crowd.
I had a chance to chat with Balloo (pictured here in the kitchen at the Y3 opening party in the Design District) last month for a Q & A for MIAMI mag. Check the magazine for the full interview. Here I give you loyal blog readers some juicy tidbits to get you in the mood for what I know will be a stellar Japanese restaurant. It opens Tuesday December 4 (tomorrow!).
What was it like working at La Broche?
The sous chef was from El Bulli and I did some research on the place and I’d ear things like foam and bubbles and it sounded really interesting. When I started there was no El Bulli book published, so you’d only hear these stories about what was going on in Spain, and these chefs seemed so liberal to me, not like rigid French cooking. It taught me to be unconventional.
What's your take on molecular gastronomy?
I don’t know if it will stick because I think it’s over the heads of some people. What I learned from the chefs at La Broche was the importance of these ingredients in Spanish culture, like the importance of the bacalau [salt cod], how fundamental that is to their cuisine and then how they try to elevate it and manipulate it. And I think some people are just manipulating ingredients and they loose the fundamentals of the theory behind it.
Tell me about your approach to organic ingredients.
I’m working with Swank Farms in Palm Beach – they grow everything through hydroponics and I was blown away by their greens. The have eight Asian lettuces and they are beautiful.
Tell me about your team.
Our sushi chef is from Nobu Bahamas and he’s also worked at Sushi Samba in Miami. We’re both committed to bringing something new to Miami, to bring a new level of Japanese cuisine to the city.
What about desserts?
I’ll be doing desserts. It’s something I experimented with a bit at Sushi Samba. What you bring back to the savory aspects of the food is remarkable, you open up a whole new spectrum of flavor profiles, whether it be putting sea salt on top of ice cream or mixing wasabi with chocolate. I started to experiment with Okinawa sea salt which is a finer salt.

Domo Japones is at 4000 NE 2nd. Avenue, Design District. 305.573.5474

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Galerie Bertin-Toublanc Basel Opening Party-Friday

A posh new gallery will open its doors during Art Basel week showcasing the talent of international artists throughout its 17,000 sq ft newly remodeled space in the Wynwood Art District. Armelle Bertin-Toublanc will host a soiree for international and local collectors, philanthropists and socialites who will gather to enjoy her hospitality and exquisite art. Galerie Bertin-Toublanc's original house gallery is centrally located in Paris, steps away from the Champs-Elysees and the Grand Palais, where they feature a progressive artistic vision of figurative and incisive contemporary art from emerging and established talent such as Baba Anand (India), Liu Bolin (China), Supakitch (France), Philippe Chevallier (France) and Mauro Perucchetti (UK).

Friday, December 7 from 7 to 10 p.m.

Galerie Bertin-Toublanc
2534 North Miami Avenue, Wynwood
RSVP to 786-718-5272 (Frederic Letzelter) or rsvp@starservicesevents.com.

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Sunday, December 02, 2007

MoCA Art in America Par-tee

Every year the MoCA party unofficially kicks off the Basel madness. The crowd is usually pretty local which is nice. Admission is $25 this year so it almost pays to become a member if two people are going. Gone are the days when one could sneak in through the yard in the back...

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