February 3rd, 2014

February – The Senses

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We know a guy (Bryce Wymer) who knows a guy (Will Lisak) who started a company called Etwas.  The Brooklyn based boutique calls itself a design project and rightfully so since the bags they produce are all one of a kind, hand made and gorgeous.  You can see the short video that Bryce directed that captures the integrity of their work here.  If that old messenger bag you’ve been schlepping around town doesn’t cut it anymore, pick up one of these.  It’ll last forever and you’ll look oh so fly.

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OK.  We discovered these Mexican chocolates at a little place called Cornell Winery nestled in the Malibu hills right next to The Old Place.  We could dedicate an entire week on how cool this place is but for now, let’s talk chocolate.  The owner introduced us to these incredible treats and scooped us on the fact that because of their lack of cocoa, they don’t overpower the palette and thus make perfect for wine pairing.  We got the “discs” and they come in 11 flavors.  We tried Orange, Salt & Pepper and Guajillo Chili with and without wine and they blew our mind both ways.  Take a drive up Kanan, belly up to the bar and ask for Tim.  He’ll give you a generous pour and don’t forget the Taza Chocolates.

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If you go on at parties about how you’ve never been a Dylan fan, don’t like his voice, think he’s weird, whatever, any person with any real taste in music will consider you a fool.  From Blood on the Tracks, to Nashville Skyline, Blonde on Blonde to Love and Theft, he’s arguably the most prolific storyteller of the century.  Besides being a major voice for change during the civil rights movement, he’s still cranking out incredible music.  The way to re-introduce yourself to Dylan is to READ THE LYRICS.  We love pretty much every thing he’s ever done but his album DESIRE has a special place in our hearts with it’s cinematic and spanish country vibe (sans Hurricane).  I love that song but I never felt it belonged on that album.  Anyway, Desire is the seventeenth studio album by American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan, released in January 1976 by Columbia Records and if you don’t own a single work from Dylan, this is a great place to start.

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Under African Skies is a great documentary where director Joe Berlinger travels back to South Africa with Paul – his first trip back in 25 years, on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the historic Graceland album.  Paul reunites with the band to give a reunion concert and that pretense is used to tell the story of the turbulent birth of the album.  Despite its huge success, and despite it being the first popular / successful example of fusing Amercian and African musical styles, it was initially met with tremendous political crossfire, as Paul was accused of breaking the UN cultural boycott of South Africa designed to end the Apartheid regime.  Paul revisits these ghosts as the musical journey is explored.  The film features interviews with Oprah Winfrey, Paul McCartney, Harry Belafonte, David Byrne, Philip Glass, Lornde Michaels, Quincy Jones, and Steve Van Zandt.  Check out the trailer here.

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This London based company does it right.  I bet the outside of the building even smells good.  They make a high end line of scrubs, skin care, hair care, fragrances and even candles.  Our fave is the Black Peppercorn body wash.  A body wash with Madagascan black peppercorn oil (for antioxidant protection), fragrant coriander and herby basil.  If everything you try smells cheap or too perfumey, you’ll love this line.  They also have a sampler so you can sleep around until you find one you like.