Posts Tagged ‘soho’

Jack’s Wife Freda, An Instant Classic

Thursday, February 2nd, 2012

One of the things I love about walking to work is that I never know what I am going to discover. That’s just the nature of New York. The city changes so quickly, and a street you’ve walked down a thousand times can suddenly become an adventure when a new place opens up. And it happens all the time. Just today for instance, as I was trudging to the office in the unseasonable warmth of a fifty degree February, I saw a small awning over the door to a store front I hadn’t seen before. Looking up I saw a sign that read “Jack’s Wife Freda”.

“What the heck…” I thought, momentarily confused by the funny, hand-lettered name, (we live in a digital world of monosyllabic pronouns and slick logo design), and here was someone brazenly flouting convention.  I went in. There are certain places that just feel good, and the moment I walked into “Jack’s Wife Freda” I knew I was in one of those places–the room is small yet open and uncluttered, the lighting is bright but friendly, the wood tables and chairs comfortable and inviting and everything feels clean and new–which it is–having only opened two weeks ago. Turn’s out Jack and Freda are the owner’s grandparents–and the place is an homage to them and their simple, elegant lifestyle. I took a seat and perused the menu. This was going to be good. The Matzoh Ball Soup was calling to me, but when I came across the Prego Roll Sandwich–Portuguese skirt steak marinated with garlic butter and served with hand-cut fries I knew there was no chance I would go with anything else.

The menu has a middle eastern influence with kebabs, Greek salads, mint lemonade and vegetable curries making an appearance but these flavors are counter-balanced by American staples, like the burger and a riff on the tuna salad sandwich.

I am a fry guy, so I was eager and anxious to see what my “hand-cut” fries were all about. They did not disappoint. Firstly, they were piping hot–a must, secondly, they were crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, and lastly, they weren’t too thin or too thick–about the width of my pinky finger.  Perfection.  When the waitress offered both mayonnaise and ketchup to garnish my fries I knew I was in capable hands. Turns out the owner–Dean–is an alumnus of the McNally empire and his attention to detail shows.

The sandwich was gorgeous–the skirt steak beautifully marinated and sliced with just enough garlic butter to make it decadent, and not so much to make it greasy. The meat was flecked with parsley that brightened it just enough and the whole thing was enshrined in a homemade Portugues roll from Parisi that was the ideal antidote to the mundane hamburger bun–in short it rocked. My partner had a grilled chicken sandwich lightly grilled with an aioli dressing and served with an arugula salad that I didn’t bother to try because I was too busy shoveling the last of the french fries into my face. I ordered a mint lemonade that would’ve been so easy to be sloppy about–”Freda” nails even these small touches–and that says everything about the place. I ordered the cheesecake and the chocolate cake for desert–both were excellent but the cheesecake was a standout, it tasted as if someone had magically buried a pumpkin pie inside a New York Cheesecake and then dusted the whole thing with cocoa–it was incredible and way too big for me to finish.

In the end this is the kind of place I will go back to again and again. the service was great, the food perfection and the ambiance is that perfect blend of casual New York, comfort and sophistication that feels effortless. “Jack’s Wife Freda” is the kind of restaurant that made me fall in love with New York. Thanks to Dean, I just fell in love again.

vosges haut chocolat + hester van eeghen

Tuesday, March 29th, 2011

no offense to marilyn, but diamonds are no longer a girls best friend. she may be standing straight at tiffany’s but on april 13th i’ll be standing straight at vosges soho boutique surrounded by luxurious leather handbags, chocolate and cocktails. what more could a girl want?

the highly-celebrated and astoundingly talented handbag designer hester van eeghen has finally brought her wondrous wares to the united states and vosges could not be happier! van eeghen’s structured statement handbags are wearable art (we fell in love with the woody back in october). for hester, “beauty means the unusual; it’s that little surprise that tickles the spirit, or sometimes shocks!”, and her philosophy radiates from every stitch, pocket and zipper.  van eeghen melds functionality and beauty with unparalleled creativity and ingenuity.  her astonishing color combinations, geometric shapes and painstaking attention to quality have created a global cult-like following and her designs featured in international fashion magazines, exhibitions and museum collections in europe. designed in amsterdam and hand-crafted in italy, hester’s collection recently arrived stateside, and vosges wants to celebrate!

so come out to vosges spring street nyc location on wednesday april 13th from 6:00-8:00 pm to meet hester van eeghen herself, view her exceptional designs and sample hand-selected vosges haut chocolat and cocktail pairings. each guest will be gifted with a hester van eeghen accessory and vosges haut chocolat.  rsvp by april 8th



where: vosges soho boutique, 132 spring st. ny, ny 10012

when: april 13th 6-8pm

rsvp: 310.550.7200 or email by april 8th


our new neighborhood

Wednesday, May 12th, 2010

One of our favorite things about our new office {aside from the bevy of new and phenomenally talented new office friends} is the abundance of food in the neighborhood!  We are at the intersection of Chinatown & Soho, and can actually see a dozen restaurants & cafes from our perch on the 6th floor.

Until a few days ago, I was a regular at the La Esquina upstairs taqueria; to my great displeasure, it’s recently been shuttered, so I’m on the hunt for a new taco hut.  In the meantime, I’m scavenging a vast landscape of coffee shops – every corner has an option! From the bodega’s giant $2 iced coffee to the twice-the-price supremely delicious version at Saturdays Surf Shop to the abundantly available Starbucks menu, this neighborhood will keep me caffeinated.

But one of my simplest and greatest pleasures is exploring the myriad delis and their expansive selection of imported items, stacked precariously on ceiling-high shelves. Every time I visit, my current craving leads me to discover a new item. Like this beverage box, for example; the cutest, happiest little iced tea that I ever did see:

And despite my efforts to eliminate it, I still maintain a hearty sweet tooth, which is always satiated by either Girl Scout cookies Do-Si-Dos, or one of my all time favorite consumable items from abroad, Pocky & its hilariously named sibling, Mens’ Pocky *for the record, I prefer Men’s Pocky.

A little taste of the new neighborhood for now.  Stay tuned for many more delicious food findings from the old & cobbled streets of southeastern Soho – or from my desk drawer, where I keep an eternal stash of Vosges Organic Enchanted Mushroom Candy Bars.  Yum.

~ lauren

we’ve moved

Wednesday, May 12th, 2010

The Markoff Group has a new home!  We exchanged our Flatiron loft for a bright & sunny Soho shared space called we work.  We now work at we work and we love it!

~ lauren