The Vino Gallery's 2nd Anniversary Bash was packed with well-wishers--over 500 by the guesstimate of owners Rachael Buehrer (photo below behind bar) and Alex Head (above behind computer). Jim and I stopped by to say hello and were met by the crush of people and a bouyant Rachael who excitedly exclaimed, "We're out of wine glasses!" In fact, they ran out of their supply of 200 wine glasses several times.
Inventory all dressed up for the party.
Rachael emailed: "The crowd included a great mix of people we see all the time in the neighborhood, customers who don't live nearby that came out for the party, and people who had never been in before. Apparently several local concierges were recommending it as something to do for out-of-towners!"
Happy Anniversary and congratulations to The Vino Gallery. I am adding a link here to my post showing the wine shop/art gallery when it opened at 4701 McPherson two years ago. Thank you to Rachael, Alex and Art Director, Matt Pruyn for choosing the CWE as the location for their business. We look forward to many more anniversaries to come.
I made a last-minute decision to run over to Left Bank Books last evening in time for the start of a reading by Joy Wilson, above, the author of "Joy the Baker Cookbook." Frankly, I wanted to see what all the fuss was about since this young woman's blog has been named one of the "Top 50 Food Blogs" by the London Times, and named "Best Baking Blog" by foodbuzz. By the time I staked my standing-room only spot, I felt the energy and high anticipation coming from the 100-plus young women---and a few men---as we waited for Joy to make her appearance.
Among those devotees in the crowd were a mother and daughter who had made a two-hour trip for the event, and fans eager to learn how to start a blog, how to write a cookbook, etc., etc. Many of them spoke with identical inflection and hand gestures, which I found really amusing. Joy even said to one questioner, "you sound just like me!" Another asked why she chose St. Louis for her book tour, as if it were the last place on earth to visit. Joy, who lives in LA, replied enthusiastically that her best friend lived down the street in an "amazing three-story house," and they had enjoyed a delicious dinner the night before at Duff's..."gosh I LOVE St. Louis," she said.
I did a double-take when, in response to a question, Joy said she didn't usually test her recipes, "unless someone emails that they have a problem with one---which rarely happens." She explained that her father and an aunt (who's blind) loved to bake and she learned a lot from them; she also worked in a bakery when she was younger. Consequently, she has her formulas down pat. The reason I mention this is that the "no testing" statement blew me away. When I was the food editor of Mary Engelbreit's Home Companion I tested my recipes until I couldn't stand to look at another dish of whatever we were cooking up. Then my sister Debbie tested them again---just to be sure the average cook could get the recipes to work. Obviously, Joy is really talented.
The recipes in Joy the Baker Cookbook, $19.99, which include more than just sweet things, looked easy and quite good. As of this afternoon there are about 20 copies left at Left Bank Books, 399 N. Euclid.
Work has begun on the installation of 18 additional Granitoid light poles at various locations throughout the Central West End North Business District (Kingshighway to Taylor, Lindell to Washington/Olive) and 5 new poles on Pershing Place near Euclid. This work is being funded by the CWE North Special Business District and is intended to fill in spots that were not adequately covered previously.
The photo above showing one of the new light pole locations was taken outside Libby's on McPherson between Euclid and Walton Row.
In the photo above you see an example of one of the light poles that was installed next to Rothschild's in 2005.
After installation, here is a little tip: If you find that the light from one of the Granitoid fixtures shines too brightly into the window of your business or home, you can request that a "house-side shield" be added. Contact Jim Dwyer: email@example.com with location.
My late father used to complain that he couldn't hear my mother, though in the next breath he would say that she talked way too much. A similar thing happens in our house. Jim often says he didn't hear me say whatever was important at the time---though I am certain it's a well-honed selective device.
But let a garbage truck start its low rumble through the neighborhood before 6 a.m. and Jim is up and out the door with camera in hand to catch the offending driver in action. The pictures in this post were taken the other morning at York and Maryland at 5:03 a.m! What many people don't seem to know is that there is a City ordinance regulating the hours a commercial trash hauler is permitted to work in residential districts. Commercial pickups are prohibited within 200' of a residential property from 8:00pm to 6:00am. The trash haulers all know the rules---they just don't care to abide by them.
I have copied the ordinance below. Jim, for whom this issue has been a high priority, suggests you call 911 if your zzzzz's are disturbed before 6. "The City's Finest" bike officers, who will hear the call for service, are aware of the situation and have clear instructions on how to handle the matter. Maybe if more of us call and complain, we can all get a little more shut-eye.
An ordinance pertaining to the refuse collection from non-residential premises; amending Ordinance 61654, codified in Section 11.02.255 (F) of the Revised Code of the City of St. Louis, and enacting in lieu thereof a new section pertaining to the same subject matter relating to the refuse collection from non-residential premises near residentially zoned premises and premises used as a dwelling; and containing an emergency clause.
BE IT ORDAINED BY THE CITY OF ST. LOUIS AS FOLLOWS:
SECTION ONE: Ordinance 61654, codified in 11.02.255 (F) of the Revised Code of the City of St. Louis hereby amended as follows:
F. No refuse shall be collected from non-residential premises within two hundred (200) feet of residentially zoned premises or any premises used as a dwelling including, but not limited to, a single-family dwelling, a two-family dwelling, a multi-family dwelling, a town home, or a semi-attached two-family, between the hours of eight p.m. and six a.m.
SECTION TWO. Emergency Clause.
The passage of this ordinance being deemed necessary for the preservation of the public peace, health and safety, it is hereby declared to be an emergency measure and shall become effective immediately upon its passage and approval by the mayor
Carolyn Miles, Owner/Director of Atrium Gallery on McPherson, invited me to view her latest exhibition, "Red," Saturday morning. Jim and I had other commitments when the exhibition opened February 17, so viewing the pieces on my own, with Carolyn as my guide, was a special treat.
Carolyn told me that over her 25 years as a gallery owner---first at the Old Post Office, then in Clayton, followed by two locations on McPherson--she has recognized that people gravitate toward the color red. So she decided to put together a show using paintings and drawings from her stable of artists where "red" is either the dominant feature, or is used as an accent in the piece, and see what happened. The experiment worked and the response has been even better than she imagined.
Kirk Pedersen's photograph "Red Wall II, Dalian, China" is at the center of the group of works shown above. This is a photograph you need to view up close to appreciate the vibrant color, which has not been digitally enhanced. The image is so realistic that bits of paper look as if they are peeling right off the photograph. As Carolyn explained: "the artist exposes us to the beauty in graffiti and deterioration."
Fredrick Nelson, a local artist with a loyal following who teaches art at MICDS, has a wonderful pastel drawing, "Exodus 2012," in Atrium's window.
Katy Stone's dramatic acrylic on Dura-lar "Red Fall II" is 92" x 23" x 5," left and below.
This is just a small sampling of the pieces currently on view at Atrium, 4728 McPherson. Be sure to get over to the gallery to see how you react to these vibrant pieces before the exhibition closes on April 14. The gallery is open Wednesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
An interesting footnote to Atrium's draw: Last fall Carolyn Miles was approached by the "Affordable Art Fair" to bring works from her stable of women artists to the inaugural AAF event in Los Angeles. (The event has also been staged in New York for several years). Atrium was one of eight art galleries to participate in the "artxwomen" exhibition. Carolyn brought 66 works to Los Angeles, which drew dealers from Russia, Australia and New York. The photo above shows Atrium's booth at the event.