While I may not have been familiar with Fire & Ice prior to my cooking session with Executive Chef Chris Nguyen, apparently the Old City restaurant is known to quite a few locals for their monthly “Drag Yourself to Brunch” event which is–yep, you guessed it–brunch and live drag show. Now, I don’t know about you, but if there’s one thing I love more than a plate of scrambled eggs, it’s a crew of fabulous drag queens.
The next edition will be going down this Sunday, May 19, featuring special VIP guest Johnny Weir. Admission is $35 if you wanna eat and drink (price includes a free Bloody Mary or mimosa) and just $10 should you just want to catch the show.
Either way, I recommend sticking around for lunch/dinner. Perhaps these pics might entice you…
Photo: Kris Eden
Whether you have a child, you’re expecting one, or you know someone who is, this is one event you’re going to want on your radar because times is tough—and kids are expensive.
This Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m, Baby Goods (& kids) eXchange (BGX) will be bringing its massive stockpile of gently used children’s clothes and gear to the Circle Thrift at the corner of Broad and Washington (1125 S. Broad St.) for a free swap open to all parents and caregivers.
Besides clothing for tots of all sizes, some of the many items up for grabs include baby carriers, tubs, strollers, high chairs, books, toys and perhaps best of all, maternity apparel. Snacks and bags will also be provided.
Although you don’t have to drop off any children’s stuff in order to come and pick up some new ones, if you do happen to have some stashed away, you should definitely consider donating it. Circle of Hope accepts donations every day during normal business hours at both its South Philly and Kensington (2233 Frankford Ave.) thrift store locations.
And if you can’t make it out this Saturday, be sure to follow BGX on Facebook, as they host monthly exchanges at various spots around the Philly area and in South Jersey.
Hurry up! You have until May 27th to go get yourself measured and consulted by in-person stylists at Indochino’s pop-up traveling tailors at 1518 Walnut Street, and it’s a rare opportunity go get onto the bandwagon of an exploding company. Hot on the heels of SuitSupply’s opening at 16th and Locust, apparently May is Suit Month in Philadelphia. And slim, tailored, well-fitting suits, too. With suits that start at $379, Indochino may actually be a more affordable option than the high-end European brand’s fifth domestic permanent retail space.
But the thing about Indochino is that it’s not a brick-and-mortar kind of business. In fact, you don’t even really need to visit the pop-up tailor space to get on the slim suiting train, but you do need to create a profile and have a skilled friend versed in taking suit and shirt measurements (if you can’t do it yourself). Once you get yourself a profile set up, then you can start playing and ordering. The customizing options are endless. And with the purchase of a suit, you get a free button-down. You can start high and get a sickening suit with a customized button-down for under $600. You choose the collar, the trim, the button placard, the buttons at the wrist, and you can even opt to embroider some initials on the pocket or cuff.
The Vancouver-born company’s exploded in recent years and gotten some prime press. They’ve figured out a good model, especially with repeat customers, who, once they’ve already ordered and been happy with suiting purchases, keep coming back for more. Bonus: They guarantee the fit in a pretty cool way. Don’t like how the suit feels after it’s shipped? They’ll give you $75 to take to a local tailor of your choosing. And they’ve got way more than suits: solid outerwear, ties and bowties, belts, pocket squares, vests, chinos and, of course, just cool blazers. Even these price points are hella low: Ties hover around $50, chinos under a $100, belts for $80, a trench for $300.
So the pop-up on Walnut isn’t exactly a retail experience in a traditional sense. It’s mostly a way for you to get a profile set up with tailor professionals who’ll help you define the style you’re looking for, and then put your hands on fabrics, check out shirt patterns, eye up ties, collar styles, and peep the way mannequins are styled.
A suit and shirt for $379 is a steal, especially one that’s custom-tailored and comes with a fitted shirt. Why would anyone bother with a boxy, “classic” suit from Macy’s, Jos. A Bank or Men’s Wearhouse that’s probably even pricier, when you can get hooked into a system that’ll clearly be the future? This is a company that figured out how to store every customer’s exact dimensions and manufacture exact fits, all online—and at a reasonable cost. Pretty sweet.
HOURS: Monday through Friday, 8am to 8pm; Saturday, 9am to 7pm; Sunday, 11am to 7pm. RSVP at indochino.com/Philadelphia or just walk in.
Prisoner of Conscious
Sounds like: A really mixed bag from Kweli’s fifth, and not in a pleasant, mixed-nuts kind of way—all over the place, too many guests, not angry enough.
Free association: Let’s be real: Dude’s almost 40. Maybe his venom’s drying out.
For fans of: Tribe/De La/Nas/Mos Def + Busta/Nelly/Miguel, conscious rap.
Fitz & the Tantrums
More Than Just a Dream
Sounds like: The L.A.-born retro and soul-inspired vehicle for Michael Fitzpatrick’s Stax and Motown worship’s sophomore doesn’t pop like their debut.
Free association: Did that whole retro soul thing already have its moment?
For fans of: Mark Ronson + Mayer Hawthorne, Hall & Oates on speed, trends.
Sounds like: The British electro diva’s second is a surprisingly sultry and complex dance music affair, despite its big producers, yielding nuance and depth.
Free association: Which song’ll burn up dancefloors all summer? It’s hard to pick.
For fans of: Annie + La Roux x LCD Soundsystem, Madonna/Robyn, ecstatic dancing.
Sounds like: Harmless, listenable country pop from the Nashville trio; their fifth may not win them awards like Need You Now did, but it’s still an easy listen.
Free association: This is radio country that makes us hate Taylor Swift more.
For fans of: Sugarland/Rascal Flatts x Miranda Lambert, FM twang, Tennessee.
Sounds like: A delicious debut of electronic dance music from L.A. best buds who clearly love some Italo disco, but also R&B, crafty production and beats.
Free association: Blast this on your way to the beach with windows open ASAP.
For fans of: Nico Jaar + Phoenix x Hot Chip, Erasure/Depeche Mode, sick grooves.
Sounds like: Frickin’ excellent solo Merge debut from the Ty Segall team player full of old-school angst, thoughtful lyrics, a little chaos and plenty of noise.
Free association: Believe the hype! One of the best statements of the year.
For fans of: Weezer x Pearl Jam, Toro y Moi + Nirvana, powerhouse garage noise.
PW’s new biweekly column, “Forking Stupid,” sees 25-year-old Nicole Finkbiner persuading professional chefs from Philadelphia’s great restaurants to please teach her, for the love of god, how to cook—one dish at a time. This week, Nicole visits Fire & Ice in Old City to cook up some classic Viet-Thai dishes.
Red Curry Noodles
2 oz. thinly sliced chicken breast
1 cup of sliced baby bok choy, or whatever seasonal veggies you have available
5 oz. julienned onions
5 oz. julienned bell peppers (any color)
1/4 tsp minced galangal (Thai ginger), if available
1/4 tsp minced kaffir lime leaves, if available
1/2 tsp red curry paste
1 pt of wide rice noodles, soaked in cold water overnight
2 tbs coconut milk
1 cup chicken stock
1 tbs torn Thai basil (the widely available Italian basil is OK, too)
1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
pinch of sugar
1. Heat wok on high. Add 2 tablespoons of corn oil, and add, in order, onions, peppers, galangal, lime leaves, red curry paste, sliced chicken. Stir constantly for three to five minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.
2. Add the chicken stock, the bok choy/veggies, coconut milk and noodles, and stir until evenly mixed.
3. Stir in the torn basil. Serves 2.
Shaky Beef Salad
3 oz. cubed uncooked strip steak
1 oz. diced red or yellow bell peppers
1 oz. diced onions
1 tsp minced garlic 2 oz. french fries (fried separately)
1 oz. torn watercress lettuce (or any lettuce available)
1/4 of a plum tomato cut in small wedges
|1 hard-boiled egg
½ tsp soy sauce
1 lime, juiced
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 tbs corn oil
1/4 tsp black pepper
1. Heat wok in high. Add corn oil, and add, in order, the beef, onions, peppers, garlic, salt (to taste) and a pinch of sugar.
2. Cook meat until desired internal temperature is reached, then add crispy fries.
3. Meanwhile, combine the lime juice, garlic, pepper and soy sauce.
3. In a bowl, toss greens with the lime jus, then top with the hot beef so that it wilts the greens.
4. Arrange tomatoes and egg. Serve immediately.
Tom Jones is the man on so many levels. His most recent, Spirit in the Room, is a stunning achievement from a 72-year-old stud. His 40th LP of covers—nay, let’s call them interpretations—bears the Welsh superstar turning Leonard Cohen, Paul McCartney and Bob Dylan sings into gut-punching, heart-wrenching exorcisms. It’ll be fascinating to watch this legendary entertainer swagger around the stage on South Street tonight. And Jones has had enough panties thrown at him to stock up a Victoria’s Secret outlet. With good reason: Back in the late ‘60s, when he was giving us “What’s New Pussycat?” and “It’s Not Unusual,” Jones wore tight pants and nearly-unbuttoned shirts. He moved like a maniac, and his ‘fro game was tight, yet felt so natural and effortless.
In the ‘70s, he gave us “She’s a Lady,” and in the ‘80s, he blew Prince’s “Kiss” up into a million pieces. But just about every song he’s ever carried with that smooth, full-throated baritone larynx is compelling. The beauty of that gift he’s carrying around in his neck is that its so capable. You want pop? Bam. A little country? Twang for days. Sad spiritual? Man, that’s dark. Folksy capriciousness? Guess who just bested Joni Mitchell and Donavan.
Jones married his high school sweetheart, but don’t sleep—he’s like the 007 of the British Invasion. He may not tear up the stage like he did on his own TV show or in his endless slew of Vegas shows, but he’s still got that legendary bulge in his throat.
8pm. $50. Theatre of Living Arts, 334 South St. 215.922.1011. tlaphilly.com
The Elements of Style
What does casual clothing brand Duke & Winston and craft publishing company The Head & The Hand Press have in common? Well, aside from the fact that they’re both based here in Philly, they’re amongst the growing movement of local artisans seeking to revive the city’s fractured post-industrial landscape, bringing quality, craft manufacturing back to the forefront. As such, the two have recently come together to design a t-shirt that highlights each of their unique brand aesthetics (see above). On Thursday, all are invited to join them in celebrating the launch of these tees with food and drinks. They’ll also be announcing the winner of their “Tales of Duke” fiction-writing contest who will read their entry. Thurs., 6:30-8:30pm. Free. Duke & Winston Showroom, 633 N. Second St.
Fashionaires Vintage Couture Pop-Up Boutique
Prada, Manolo, Chanel, Fendi, Louboutin—any of those names ring a bell? Of course they do. For the second straight year, the luxury online consignment boutique “the fashionaires” will be bringing its selection of vintage designer handbags, accessories and shoes here to Philly for a one-day-only curated shopping event. The earlier you arrive, the better your chances of going home with the best items. Hell, even if you can’t afford to buy anything, just being able to see and touch a piece of fashion history might just be enough of a reason to go. Thurs., 12-7pm. Free. Hotel Palomar, TYNG Room, 117 S. 17th St., 2nd floor.