Writing, reviews, interviews, photography.

Posts from the “field trip” Category

Field Trip: LA Foodshop

Posted on May 27, 2014

FOODSHOP_TITLECARD

Everything comes and goes with time. Trends rise, appearing from seemingly nowhere with no explanation for their popularity, climb to significance only to disintegrate as they fall from grace, perhaps lost in a fog of neglect: the ultimate void into which hipness disintegrates. In chronicling the ever-changing “cool”, we see this quite a bit. Sometimes it’s sad, sometimes it’s for the best, and sometimes it simply is what it is. There are very few things in life that do not succumb to these delightful and tragic pitfalls but two that will forever be a part of our lives are food and fellowship. These two things alone can drive communities to be built from the ground up, serve as the foundation for neighborhood economies, and solidify one’s self-perception within a group.

In 2012, I packed up and moved to Los Angeles with my girlfriend.  I had moved most recently from Philadelphia where the burgeoning food industry provided many of my friends with gainful employment and gave me the opportunity to sample a variety of high end offerings in the area. The food in Philly is unusually good; that is to say that due to the compact spread of the city, the ratio of exemplary food offerings to neighborhoods is second to none in the US today. I had extraordinarily high standards set by the time I rolled into LA and without a doubt they were blown out of the water, though in ways I hadn’t expected. We found the most diverse selection of ethnic foods I’ve ever seen anywhere. The Mexican food is obviously fantastic but the offering across the board, representing nearly every culture in the world, is paralleled by none. While you might try to go to a bar or restaurant in Philly that’s too crowded and be in luck with a host of 10 other offerings within walking distance, LA’s a different animal but as long as you’re willing to jump in your car for 10-20 minutes the options are limitless.

DSC_5623_watermarked

Doughboy Watch Co. Revisited

Posted on May 16, 2014

Doughboy Watch Company Masthead
Just barely over a year ago, we introduced to you our friends at Doughboy Watch Co. in Philadelphia, PA. Tom, the man behind the loupe, takes turn-of-the-century mechanical masterpieces refurbishes them into the precision timepieces they once were, before putting it on your wrist in the style of a WWI trench watch. These beauties belong on your arm, and the absence of batteries means you will always know what time it is no matter what part of the world you may find yourself in, and no matter how long you’re there.

Field Trip: Berkeley Supply Co. in Denver, CO.

Posted on January 13, 2014

berkeley_supply_masthead

Every December for the past 7 years, I’ve made the pilgrimage to Steamboat Springs, CO. for some winter sports action. I like Steamboat a lot; it’s casual all of the time (read: don’t have to wear a fur coat to fit in), the mountain isn’t as miserably crowded as others, and the town has a great homey feel that some of the other ski towns lack. Every year we fly into Denver and make the 3-4 hour drive into the mountains. Every year we make the 3-4 hour drive back to Denver and fly out. I have distant family that lives in Denver and I never visit them because I’m an asshole and I really should make more time for them. This trip I did just that and had a few extra hours to kill so I swung by Berkeley Supply Co. who, like my family, I’ve been meaning to visit for a while. It was now or never so my girlfriend and I trekked over to the Tennyson district to check out the shop.

berkeley_supply_15

berkeley_supply_12

Field Trip: East & West

Posted on December 16, 2013

Print

I had been hearing about East & West in St. Louis for a while; being from the area and still having a few friends there, they’d always tell me how I had to visit the shop next time I was in town. I went a year without going back to St. Louis so when I did around Thanksgiving, I made damn sure to check the place out. Brian Simpson runs an incredible shop, which is actually located in the Kirkwood neighborhood, just a little south and west of the city. I was blown away to find out that he carries brands like Rogue Territory, 3sixteen, Teranishi Brand, Apolis, and more. Not only are these all brands we’re huge fans of but any top level shop you’ll see in major markets carries these brands as well. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t feel a little hometown pride. Click here to view the interview and photos.

east_west_4_watermarked

Field Trip: Blueprint Coffee

Posted on December 9, 2013

Web

I worked in the specialty coffee industry for quite a long time and to finally have an article about a shop, especially one to which I have several connections, is pretty cool for me. I was visiting family in St. Louis over the Thanksgiving holiday and got the chance to visit Blueprint Coffee which was started by my friend and former bandmate Mike Marquard along with several other folks we knew from Kaldi’s Coffee and elsewhere. There’s been an influx of new coffee companies in St. Louis over the past few years; when I was getting my start, I worked for Kaldi’s and at the time they were the only show in town. Most of the new shops are fantastic and do a great job of curating a diverse coffee offering along with creating a pleasing atmosphere in which to enjoy said coffee. Blueprint, in my opinion, does this the best of all of the new shops and they roast their own coffee which gives them a massive leg up in the branding department. Some of the best coffee shops in the world sell other roasters beans but there’s something special about the shop/roaster combo that buries its way into people’s hearts. Blueprint’s clean aesthetic reminds me of some of the great shops around the country (Four Barrel, Stumptown, Intelligentsia, etc.) while pulling a color palette and geometric accents that are uniquely their own. Click here to view all images and read the interview.

blueprint_coffee_14_watermarked