In many ways we were sad to say goodbye to 2017, but there's already so much that we're looking forward to in 2018. Here are a few things that have us excited for the New Year. Enjoy!
Marfa Read More
While some New Yorkers will wait out the last icy days of winter at tropical beaches abroad, I'll be escaping the winter doldrums by going to Marfa, Texas. I've wanted to visit Marfa since I saw the James Dean movie Giant (which also kickstarted my obsession with Dean), though the Marfa of today looks pretty different from when Dean was there. Some of the things I'm the most excited for are burrito trucks, desert drives to see Donald Judd's sculptures, and (hopefully) catching the Marfa Lights.
With so much elaborate cooking for the holidays it can be a relief to have simple recipes on your roster. And I personally like to avoid any breakfast recipes that require a food processor or a stand mixer. Who wants to deal with all that whizzing and whirring and clutter first thing in the morning? About as non-fussy as a baked good can get, these Blueberry Maple Oatmeal Muffins from the "Cooking with Blueberries" feature of the July 1995 issue of Gourmet make for a hearty, subtly sweet breakfast for Christmas Eve morning, Christmas Day morning, Day After Christmas morning, or basically any morning all winter long. Read More
Thanksgiving is by far one of our favorite holidays. Any occasion that's celebrated by spending a full-day eating can count on the McInnis sisters as participants. This year our cousin is hosting the feast, and while she'll be tackling the meal's more complicated dishes like (deep-fried) turkey and an array of side dishes, we'll be bringing a number of smaller, though no less significant nibbles, that travel well and couldn't be easier to make. Other than wine and cocktail ingredients, our mother's cranberry sauce will be making the journey to CT with us. Read More
Spirits for spirits. That's what I had in mind as I thought about a cocktail for Halloween. If you Google "Halloween cocktails," the results are indeed scary, but not exactly for the reasons that you would hope. Candy corn. Whipped cream vodka. Puckers schnapps. Those drinks don't look eerie (or edible), and consuming them almost guarantees that your evening will end like Lawn Witch's.
After raiding my bar cart and doing research on weird-colored liquors, "Ships in the Night" came to be. It's unsettling in name and appearance, and the taste is excellent and entirely unexpected given the color.
Why call it "Ships in the Night?" The deep purple reminded me of ocean water in the evening, and the white foam from the egg white gives the allusion of stormy seas. What I like about the taste is that you don't see it coming -- pisco and violets are an usual pairing. Together with the lemon juice and egg white, you have a drink that gently carries you through the night. Read More
Autumn can mean many things to many people: Halloween, back-to-school, or an ever-expanding selection of pumpkin spice products. For us, the countryside was always the best expression of the new season, abundant in colors and textures. More than just changing leaves, one observed fields of goldenrod, soft grasses draped over stone walls, the pale amber of dried hydrangeas and the deep aubergine of prunis trees.
So it comes as no surprised that our favorite fall fashions reflect this aesthetic. For me it's expressed in earthy tones and textured tweeds, while for Julia it can mean a tailored plum dress paired with delicate hammered-gold jewelry. And while we're in the city most days, these clothes are best worn against the backdrop of an elegant estate or a country lane. Read More
Since 2007, the National have been one of our favorite bands. Together, we’ve seen them perform live at least eight times, playing to hundreds of people in a park to fifty in a small room in the Hudson Valley. We’ve posed for photos with the singer, Matt Berninger, and spent one evening in a giddy haze after he passed us one of his (many) half-consumed bottles of white wine from the stage. As siblings, the band has been one of the things we’ve bonded over the most, and something we’ve enjoyed sharing with each other. For us, they are a band for real New Yorkers: their songs capture the beauty and frustration of being liberal city dwellers, sharing tiny spaces with other people while feeling strangely removed from most of those around us. We really did grow up with them -- ten years is a long time to like anything -- and because the band has had such a pronounced role in our lives individually, but also as sisters, we thought it only made sense that we write about them together.
Last month the National released their 7th studio album, which is one of their best, and are now performing it to sold-out shows around the world. The National are one of the most beloved bands but most people have never heard of them, or at least couldn’t identify them by name. Considered to be “critical darlings” after their release of Alligator in 2005, they have a devoted fan following and success that has dumbfounded the corporate music industry. How could a group of middle-aged men who perform “sad sack songs” about very grown up things sell out arenas and pull in a fan base that includes teenage girls and rock and roll dads? How could any band get a stadium of artists, bankers, tech geeks, fashionistas, and parents to sing together, “I was afraid, I’d eat your brains.” Read More