By Justine Aw, London
When I first caught wind of a new collaboration involving Bompas & Parr and Selfridges there was talk of flooded rooftops and rowboats above Oxford Street. And as always with the duo of jellymongers, one never knows quite what to believe (their previous shenanigans have included everything from a breathable cloud of Campari to chocolate waterfalls).
But sure enough, they have certainly delivered. The event’s official title is “The Truvia Voyage of Discovery” and as its name suggests is an introduction for the the natural, calorie-free Truvia® sweetener which will make its UK debut through Selfridges in a few months time. In typical Bompas & Parr style, the event must really be seen to be believed. No longer the barren urban rooftop along one of London’s most iconic shopping streets, the roof of Selfridges has been transformed into a home for thousands of stevia plants (from which the sweetener is derived) and a boating lake complete with a waterfall and a magical crystal bar/island. During their visit, voyagers can boat up to a bar where they can enjoy rooftop, boatside libations from the talent of the Experimental Cocktail Club as well as coffee and tea from the Caravan and the Rare Tea Company.
The rooftop madness runs from the 21st - 24th of July. Sadly, all tickets have already sold out!
More fun surprises that arrived while i was in NY! Gorgeous pack for The 2011 Hangar One Vodka Blimp Tour… it’s fun to see that SF/Alameda’s Hangar One is now taking the country by… BLIMP! This very minute, the Hangar One blimp is adrift in the skies somewhere between Long Island and Boston. There’s nothing quite like a crazy continental blimp tour! The 120 foot aircraft with a vintage Hangar One airstream is on an epic 6 month tour which kicked off from Miami last month. Over the next 6 months, the blimp will be visiting over 20 cities across the US, before finally docking in Hangar One’s home of Alameda, CA at the end of November. Check out the blimp schedule to find when the team will be docking in your town. Because when the blimp comes to town, it’s more than a pit stop. Each stop is also a competition between 15 bartenders with winners for every stop.
Beautiful branding, illustration and packaging that goes along with the tour by Dead As We Know It! The gorgeous drawings have a homely feel that captures the handmade, small scale production of the spirits. The illustration runs throughout the press kit and the company’s website. Check out the gorgeous intro at the Hangar One Vodka site as well as The Ballad of Hangar One and documentaries about Hangar One’s Story, Farm and Process, created by Dead As We Know It… Now as for the goodies in the cardboard case that arrived ~ take a peek at the unboxing of the poster, BLIMPSPOTTING stickers, hat, t-shirt, and more on the next page!
There’s something so incredibly enticing about a mysterious wooden box arriving. Especially when there is a screw driver taped to it and the instructions read: 1. Locate screws and initiate unscrewing. 2. Relieve box of lid begin discovery. 3. Attempt to contain oneself. I think i made it through steps one and two and totally failed at three.
Inside the mysterious box are some of the awesomest Sir Kensington of NY’s “Gourmet Scooping Ketchups” from i’ve yet to encounter ~ tantalizing deliciousness wrapped in wonderfully detailed and playful branding/packaging. From the full sized bottles of their Spiced (YUM!) ketchup to the adorable new minis (Heinz babies are cute, but i can totally see these on hotel room service trays!) ~ as well as a white top hat serving dish, ornate little spoon to scoop with, and a mustache embroidered handkerchief/napkin to dab ever so delicately with… nestled in straw. So how step three seemed possible, is beyond me. Additionally there’s an amazing little book included as well ~ but that’s worth a post of it’s own, so more to come on that… for now, go take a peek at the incredible packaging of this wooden box of goodies that just arrived from the magical world of Sir Kensington’s on the next page!
Does it get more awesome than pulling two large volumes of old books off the shelf, only to find a bottle of moonshine hidden within? Well, actually it does when Stillhouse Moonshine customize and age the book such that all the details pull you in even further… from the 500 numbered editions, to the cover and first few pages having actual info about the story of Moonshine, nothing is out of place. In fact this beautiful packaging has me tempted to start an ACTUAL library bar… a gorgeous shelf of old books with wondrous libations tucked away in each volume. Of course each book would need to somehow be a hint at what is to be found within. Take a peek inside the two volume packaging of Stillhouse Moonshine on the next page!
Things are changing so fast here in the NOTempire ~ ideas brewing for big new things, Jackson has been exploring the wondrous culinary inspirations around the globe resulting in some STUNNING Tasteologie Superpost Features, Justine has been playing with the RCA/CSM final shows and playing with animals across the UK and internet… and i took a breather and hid out in Minneapolis for the massive injection of visual/computational aesthetic/kinect hacking/making inspiration at EyeO Festival… Oh, and i can’t even tell you what Dan and Marcia have been secretly working on as well… Anyhow, i’m giddy today. Back in LA and trying to catch up a bit…
So, please forgive me for the quiet nature and slow down in pacing of posting for a moment there ~ so much excitement, so much to take in, and so much to come. But for now… how awesome is the Drink Factory that Jackson checked out? Check out his stunning post on it HERE… so many awesome gadgets truly showing of the science of cocktails…
Adventures this weekend lead Jackson and i to £10, the new secret bar at the Montage Beverly Hills ~ with endless Macallan, ice balls, soap stones, bacon and more… it was a fun launch event with some incredible bar tools laid out with surgical precision… take a peek at our adventures on Tasteologie.
The latest package that arrived just made me wish i was a dad. How weird is that? This Macallan 18 year & Shwood Sunglass gift set in a gorgeous wood box just arrived as potential Father’s Day gifting ideas… but i love them both! No offense, to Dads, but these should really go on the gift list for Moms, Grads, friends,… any occasion really! The glasses above are Shwood’s Canby in East Indian Rosewood with grey polarized lenses. The only thing that would take this gift set further… if only Shwood and Macallan would truly join forces and make a series of sunglasses from actual Macallan casks. Different woods to go with the various scotches… i’d rock the Sherry Oak Cask sunglasses any day! Take a peek at the awesome packaging and details on the next page!
So, i sent Tasteologie editor, Jackson, out to the UK with the Plymouth and Beefeater Gin folks… and wow… he just wrote up a feature on their adventures out to Plymouth and literally scooping water out from the absolutely breath taking reservoir to make this cocktail right there on the reservoir wall! Anyhow, you simply must check out the full feature, i can’t stop staring at it.