Williamsburg has it all. The ?hipster haven? is home to the most sought-after, most underground, most diverse or just all-around best music, art, indie fashion, vintage shopping, food, microbrews ? and now wine. Brian Leventhal, however, saw that Williamsburg does have the potential to be an oenophiliac borough --wine just needed to be reinvented. And so, Brooklyn Winery was born.
Brooklyn Winery isn?t your typical wine bar. Keeping with Williamsburg?s artistic, hands-on legacy, the 8,000 square-foot space offers the opportunity to make your own wine ? something Leventhal and his partner, John Stires, wanted people to be able to do right here in the city. Master winemaker, Conor McCormack, is on hand to guide beginners to experts through the entire process; from crushing the grapes to bottling their creations. Brooklyn Winery also features a spacious wine bar and event space, creating a real headquarters for wine in Williamsburg. Wine enthusiasts and future wine enthusiasts can learn a whole new skill in winemaking, they can gather and sample local and house-made wines and they can form a new community ? which is just what Leventhal and Stires were hoping for.
In addition to wines you?ve never had before, Brooklyn Winery also boats a small plates menu supplied by nearby Radish ? things like lamb meatballs and gourmet popcorn. With locally sourced food and wine, it seems that Brooklyn Winery has successfully brought wine to Williamsburg in true Brooklyn fashion.
Brooklyn Winery is located at 213 North 8th Street between Driggs and Roebling Streets.
Are there certain places in the world that inspire you? What cities do you feel have a true style identity?
I?m inspired by anywhere I have traveled or lived. I?m grateful for having had the opportunity to see many places to draw inspiration from. I think every city has its own style identity. LA, NY, Paris, London?they all have a different aesthetic.
What are your travel essentials?
Books, bikinis, sweats and my two English bulldogs.
The FIT Museum is currently housing the Japan Fashion Now exhibit. Curated by fashion academic-doyenne, Valerie Steele, it is the first of its kind to feature contemporary Japanese fashion in a complete journey from the 1980s to today. Starting with the key designers of the ?80s fashion revolution -- Issey Miyake, Yohji Yamamoto, and Rei Kawabuko of Comme des Garcons, the exhibit moves on to new brands such as Undercover, Sacai, and Matohu. Naturally, the showcase also pays tribute to the important street trends and subcultures that Japan is so well known for; Classic Lolita, Prince Decoration, and Cosplay (Costume Play), which stand side by side in peculiar harmony.
Fashion Institute of Technology
Seventh Avenue at 27th Street
New York, New York
Tuesday to Friday, noon-8pm
Closed Sunday, Monday, and legal holidays
Admission is free
Hema Shroff Patel was born in the US but has lived in Mumbai for the past 22 years. Her journey in the preservation and resurrection of textile traditions began nearly 20 years ago. After many years of working in the weaving industry, Patel set up her own shop?hence, the birth of Amba in 1999. Amba?s line supports traditional forms of weaving, block printing and eco-friendly natural dyeing. A portion of the profits earned are earmarked for specific projects where the aim is to improve the quality of the craftspeople?s professional lives. We sat down with Hema to gain insight into her business as well as the cause she supports.
You are US born, but now are based in Bombay. What brought you there?
I came here after I finished my undergraduate degree to take a break, spend time with my family ? who had moved to Bombay ? and work for a year before applying to graduate school. After a year, I felt I should live and work in Bombay for another year. It seemed like I had lots more to discover and learn. I met my husband during my second year of living in Bombay.
What are the "must go to" places you take friends and family to when they are visiting you in Mumbai?
Favorite Restaurant: Swati Snacks ? best Indian street food in town, served in a low key diner.
Treasure Trove: Bungalow Eight in Colaba. There?s floor upon floor of wonderful pieces from clothing to home to lifestyle , all from near and far. It?s set on three floors which are beautifully restored warehouse-like spaces. One can spend hours pottering around in there.
Heritage nook in the city: Banganga Tank and sit on the steps near sunset. It?s surrounded by old temples falling to bits. The water tank has a wonderful feeling of calm.
How did you initially become involved in weaving scarves? What is the origin of the name "Amba?
I was invited to this lovely weaving town by the Holkars back in 1991. Arriving on the banks of the Narmada River was a homecoming of sorts. It just felt so right to be there. I started working with their initiative that year and have worked in that weaving village ever since.
?Amba? is one of 101 names for the Narmada River. My friend Pandya, in Maheshwar, found the name for me almost ten years ago. Amba is now set up as a social entrepreneurship and gives back to projects to support craft heritage in rural India.
Can you fill us in on Women Weave, the non-profit organization you are on the board of?
Women Weave has two main objectives:
What is the most rewarding part of being involved in Women Weave?
Currently, one of the most satisfying aspects is working with the Young Weavers; children of weavers we have worked with for years. Many of these children are the first to be educated in their families and have options for the first time ever . Their debate is do they carry on the weaving tradition or do they go on to college and move to a mid-size town in India and look for work. Some of these youngsters are already weavers, as they have helped with the weaving in and around going to school. Our job at WW is to help them make an informed choice.
Trilogy, Hotel Sea Princess, Juhu Tara Road, Santracruz (W), call + 9122 26469500,7USD for a beer, 20 USD for a cocktail, 320USD for a bottle of Moet (inclusive of taxes).
The Art Loft: Picture Perfect
The Art Loft is described as its namesake; an artsy and cozy loft space where the city?s cultural vultures like to congregate. From French ballet, improv acting, wine appreciation, to genealogy and art therapy, the schedule here boasts rare and interesting workshops specially curated by French owner and art therapist, Leila Tayebaly. She keeps it interesting with movements like The Art Conspiracy, where the walls of Mumbai?s bars and restaurants will serve as canvases for budding artists in the city. Get ready to make your mark!
The Art Loft, Valentino Rest, above Patel Stores, next to Mehboob Studio, Bandra (W), call + 91 9819132958, starts at 90 USD for eight hours.
You can?t swing a hanger in Colaba without hitting a swish multi-designer store housed in a century old building. Ogaan is the newest of these, stocking ruffled dresses by Gauri and Nainika, wispy chiffons by Nachiket Barve, and embellished jerseys by Kavita Bhartia. Some items you?ll fiind at other fashion hobs, so I suggest you focus on the unique vintage evening bags and oversized elephant rings by Ritika Sachdeva. Also, the uber cool tees by Sanchita sport treated leather strips and interesting shoulder pads. You definitely won?t be dissapointed here!
Getting there:5/5 Grants Building, first floor, Arthur Bunder Road, Colaba, call + 9122 22833576/7, 25 USD for a Ritika Sachdeva oversized ring.
Two One Two: Mumbai?s Hippest New Code
In a mid-town district starved for hip restaurants, Two One Two is a great new reason to visit Worli. Here, regal high back chairs, an all-wood exterior and a restrained bar take a back seat, allowing decadent Italian dishes to take center stage. Camembert baked to perfection, stormy mushroom cappuccino soup and flamboyantly colourful pizza verdure, all adorn the menu. Milanese chef Alex Bignotti is the master behind such dishes. Backed by Ketan Kadam, the man behind Fire ?N? Ice, Mumbai?s Two One Two is the equivalent of Studio 54. Far too indulgent for a working lunch, Two One Two is better for a week night dinner or weekend cocktails.
Two One Two Bar and Grill, 12 A, Hornby Vellard Estate, same road as Nehru Centre, Worli, call + 91 9920838529 / + 9122 24901994, 50 USD for a meal for two without alcohol.
When it comes to gold in Hong Kong,it?s a matter of tradition and custom. Luckily, our selection and prices will spoil you rotten. Hennessy Road in Causeway Bay will prove this ten times over. Well-known local jewelry boutiques line the street, competing for business. Endless window displays filled with modern and traditional gold jewelry will continually capture your attention, eliciting a response in the form of swooning. Step inside the shops and you won?t be disappointed. Shelves lined with ornate gold necklaces and bracelets, and drawers overflowing with gold chains, are a bit of what you can expect on your journey. And the big time bonus is that all of the jewelry is tax-free. How?s that for added incentive!
Often heavy and ornately designed, many of these jewels are made for sacred unions. Dragon pendants, along with floral necklaces and bracelets adorned with the Chinese character for ?double happiness,? are the norm as they symbolize good fortune and prosperity. Lucky for us ladies, these are gifts in which tradition requires the brides? parents and other elder relatives to give her as part of her dowry. A Chinese bride in Hong Kong is usually seen wearing a Chinese ?qipao? dress along with gold jewelry on her big day. What?s the gold standard of expectation in Hong Kong, you ask? The more the better! The number of gold bracelets worn by the bride translates to her wealth and how much she is loved by her family. Talk about competition!
You snooze, you lose. Rule the night, Mumbai-style. We let you in on the places that don?t stop, not even for a power nap.
No matter where you make merry in South Mumbai, Bade Miya is always the after party to the after party. In a seedy lane behind the Taj Mahal Palace & Hotel, this kebab king and his crew hand out the yummiest kathi rolls and Mughlai dishes until the wee hours of the morning. While posh partygoers prefer to pass through for a Seekh kebab roll, the more adventurous use their car hoods as tables, and bare hands to polish off a plate of chicken tikka and naan. If you visit during the 2 a.m. rush hour - bars and clubs in the city (officially) shut at 1.30 a.m. ? prepare to wait at least 30 minutes for your late night feast.
Bade Miya roadside stalls, Tulloch Road, Apollo Bunder, Colaba, call +91 022 22851649. Opens at 7 p.m., Rs 150 ($3 USD) for a chicken tikka roll.
Leena Mogre Gym
This is where (most) Indian television stars go after their graveyard shoots wrap. The only 24-hour gym in the city, Leena Mogre?s treadmills also move to the speed of Mumbai?s corporate slaves, call center executives and sexy insomniacs. Nightcaps include chocolate whey protein blends.
Leena Mogre, 482, 3rd floor, Link Corner Mall, Linking Road, Bandra (W), call +91 022 26481796.
24/7 Coffee Shops
Mumbai?s five-star hotel coffee shops are open 24/7, and they?re usually packed on weekends with Mumbai?s party overflow. Here, you can snack on sandwiches that cost $25 USD (as if you hadn?t already spent enough on those swish cocktails). Get a yummy Fiamma pizza at The President Hotel?s Trattoria , and split it five ways. If you?re in the suburbs, drop by Vista at Taj Lands End for uncomfortably expensive comfort food (get the dal makhani) and an almost definite Bollywood czar sighting: Shah Rukh Khan and Salman Khan live in the neighborhood.
Trattoria, Taj President Hotel, 90, Cuffe Parade, call +91 022 66650808; Taj Lands End, Bandstand, Bandra (W), call +91 022 66681234
In a bylane of Mumbai?s glitzy Juhu suburb, behind a rundown bakery, you?ll find some of the best Indian rock bands (and groupies) practicing for their next gig. You and your friends can stop to listen ? or pay Rs 200 an hour and take the next jam room shift to play your own tunes. 3rd Step is a 24-hour music quarters that, in addition to a jam room, also houses an instrument store and a record company ? all squeezed into 350 square feet of space.
3rd Step, lane opposite Sea Princess Hotel, Kishore Kumar Ganguly Road, behind Rajput Bakery, Juhu
Even in a country flashing with gold ? you?ll find it on saris and stationary, temples and totes ? the city of Mumbai stands out for its obsession with the precious metal. From old Maharashtrian grandmothers, to women in the boardroom (and even some adventurous men), gold is everyone?s favorite way of spicing up an ensemble. A gold and onyx necklace is an example of what?s considered an important wedding symbol, and worn daily by a sub-sect of married women in Mumbai.
The best examples of traditional jewelry can be found in Zaveri Bazar, commonly known as a ?jewelry market?, where excited brides shop for their trousseau. Here you can score the likes of delicate rings and multi-tiered necklaces, to waist-belts and hairpins. Our favorite stop for baubles is at Dedhia Jewelers, conveniently located in Mumbai.
All that Glitters?
Although a lot of the gold jewelry you may discover on your journey contributes a vintage-cool factor to the most contemporary wardrobes, there are still plenty of young designers making more urban designs from gold. Tanishq, a pan-national jewelry store chain is a terrific one-stop-shop. Not only does it have a wide variety of price ranges, but it also guarantees authenticity. Often times, smaller stores are less reliable in terms of purity and weight.
Of course, if you?re not too fussy about buying the genuine stuff, try Bungalo 8. This lush, three-level store in Colaba, carries some of the most lust-worthy faux gold jewelry in the city. A true golden temple!
ZaveriBazar, Bhuleshwar, South Mumbai; Dedhia Jewelers, Shop No 3, SangitSagar Building,Matunga; Tanishq flagship, 365/C, Linking Road, Khar; Bungalow 8, Arthur Bunder Road, Colaba.