Growing up Spanish cuisine was always present at the dining table. My dad would cook an intensely rich callos, tender lengua, a seafood-filled paella and homemade Spanish-style chorizo. That is why I was delighted when ArroZeria in Bonifacio Global City invited me to visit and taste their food.
Over the last six months I’ve switched to wearing straighter trousers. I wear my Fullcount 1108 more than my Signet x Fullcount 1109PH even though the former is two sizes larger. Lately my favourite pair of trousers is the Buzz Rickson Original Spec Chino (photo above). The higher rise and straighter leg is more comfortable to wear and looks more flattering.
Shahidha Bari over at Aeon has written an articulate essay about what clothes say. She perfectly captures many of the things I feel when I wear certain items of clothing and the relationship I have with them. Rarely does someone write about clothing this way making it a thought-provoking and somewhat entertaining read.
On how we are in clothes:
Perhaps we simply are in clothes. And in clothes, our various selves are subject to modification, alteration and wear. This happens in clumsy ways – the glasses you hope might lend you new seriousness, the reddened lips that mimic arousal – but also in innumerably subtle ways: the heel that cants the body, contracting your stride, the tie that stiffens your neck and straightens your spine. Some garments constrict and reshape us physically, but also, sometimes, emotionally. And there are garments we can feel, that itch and chafe, that make apparent the difference of their textures to that of the surface of our skin, as though we and they are not one. In these, we are alert to the experience of being in our bodies, in a way that seems at odds with the rest of the world gliding past, apparently immune to discomfort. In such garments, too, we are always alert to the ever-present physicality of our bodies.
On the anxiety we feel:
The anxiety of authenticity is never far away from dress. We seek clothes that ‘are us’, and there is an implicit insolence in the ready-to-wear, off-the-rail garments we rifle through, that unsettle us in suggesting that our precise measurements might be generic, predictable and average. Still, there can be immense tenderness in the ways our clothes tell the stories of a self subject to all kinds of alteration: the bitter-sweetness of ‘growing’ into a coat inherited from a long-gone parent; folding away the maternity dress you will never have cause to wear again. Sometimes, there is only anguish: the blood stain on a T-shirt from that most terrible of days. Clothes mark our mutability. They parallel the vicissitudes of our lives in their subtle shifts of colour and sheen, and they stretch over time.
I highly recommend reading the entire essay here.
Designer perfumes: Niche fragrance collections are the heaviest hitters (Independent)
“Limited availability, scarce ingredients, high price-points. Perhaps the niche or collection perfume is about seizing back exclusivity for fashion, eschewing mass appeal and mass profit in favour of something more unique and individual? “To be niche, to be different,” says Veronique Gautier, nailing the appeal of these perfumes – the antidote to the mass market. Something customers are, ironically, willing to pay through the nose for.
The One-Piece Back (Die! Workwear)
“One of the nice things about working with Steed is that they’re able to produce a single-piece back. Traditional patternmaking dictates that a center seam has to be put into the back of suit jackets and sport coats (if you pick one up, I’m sure you’ll see it). Much like darts, that seam is used to add shape – which is important since your spine naturally curves from the nape of your neck down to the small of your back, and then out again towards your seat.”
Why does gin and tonic taste so good? (Quartz)
“Similar types of molecules attract each other, and dissimilar molecules repel each other (just like oil and water). In the figure above, the purple molecules are like flat pieces of cardboard, which creates attraction between them, whereas the reds are more like out-of-shape cartons, and attract other reds. The reds in gin attract the reds in tonic, and the same with the purples. The attraction between these molecules creates aggregates, which taste different from how the substances taste on their own.”
Colour combinations, from casual to formal (Permanent Style)
“The colour combinations that we discuss every week in regards to formal wear, can be applied just as readily to casual wear. Although there will always be elements that don’t crossover (such as the immense versatility of denim) a lot of the themes and lessons are the same.”
Last February UNIQLO released their collaboration with Liberty London but it wasn’t until last week that I discovered the collection. Liberty London is a British store known for their signature heritage floral and paisley prints. The collection spans menswear, womenswear and kid’s clothing.
This Is the Worst Compliment You Can Give a Man (The Cut)
“So if dapper is out, what’s in? Sharp, put-together, handsome, on point, fresh, crisp(y), cool, well-appointed, killin’ it — heck, even something like natty works. But even better than those terms is specificity. It’s the simplest way to pay someone a compliment on their terms. It’s easy to flap your arms and say, “I love what I see with … THIS whole … situation,” but it doesn’t feel as good as “I like your fuzzy herringbone sport coat.” The overuse of dapper is a symptom of menswear outpacing our own vocabulary for men looking good.”
Mezcal Sunrise (The New Yorker)
“Mezcal is a distilled spirit, and can be made from some thirty varieties of agave, or maguey. It is typically produced by farmers using a laborious and antiquated method, at primitive distilleries known as palenques, and sold or shared in villages to mark births, funerals, and everything in between. Contrary to popular belief, it does not induce hallucinations. Originally, “mezcal” was a generic term, like “wine,” for a spirit produced all over Mexico. Tequila, a two-billion-dollar global business, is just a style of mezcal; developed in the state of Jalisco, it is made from a single variety, the blue agave, using a largely industrialized process, and consumed on spring break in the form of slammer.”
We Tried To Resolve The Great Gin and Tonic Debate (Mr Porter)
“The gin and tonic – simple, delicious and yet oh so divisive. First, we have the great garnish debate. Does one slip in a slice of lemon, a bit of lime, or perhaps some cucumber? Then the make of gin. With so many to choose from nowadays, which is the finest? And does it matter whether the vessel we drink it from is tall or short? In an attempt to settle these important matters, we asked five of London’s best gin makers to tell us how they like theirs.”
Inside The UK’s Most Secretive Watch Collecting Club (HODINKEE)
“This weekend, 32 of the world’s most obscure watch collectors gathered in an undisclosed location, somewhere in central London. Two of them flew in from Bali, another from New York, and many more made the special trip to the British capital with watches that adhered to the theme, “Issued By.” The get-together, organized on the same weekend as the London preview of the upcoming Phillips auctions, was invitation only, but I was briefly allowed into this horological fraternity, for which no secret handshake is required – so long as you’re wearing a special watch.”
Buddy Tan of Marikina-based custom shoemaker Black Wing Shoes has penned an insightful piece on the decline of Philippine shoemaking and how imported footwear became favoured over local brands. For those who aren’t familiar, Black Wing Shoes along with Sapatero are a few of the brands breathing new life into local shoemaking.
Suits through the decades: Bryan Manning on costume (Permanent Style)
““You see this approach mostly in uniforms today. They are cut to sit very close to the body, with a very high armhole. That gives you tremendous ability to move,” says Bryan. To accommodate this movement, those old suits were also made with a lot more fullness in the back of the sleeve.”
The Modern Bartender’s Go-To Well Spirits (Punch)
“What bartenders keep in the well has changed dramatically over the past 15-plus years or so, not only in terms of the brands and quality of the more traditional staple spirits, but in the range of products that make up what’s kept in the well. So, what does the modern “rail” look like today? We asked 25 bar professionals to reveal (and defend) their go-to well spirits. Here are their top picks.”
Your Next Purchase: a ‘Green’ Fragrance for Summer (Gear Patrol)
“In the wide world of fragrance, green is relatively new scent family, one characterized by earthy notes you might expect from the name: grass, tea, moss, twigs and leaves. Variations abound, but fragrances categorized by green notes are often bright, crisp and casual, evoking images of an English garden or a fresh-cut lawn in the countryside. If that sounds like somewhere you’d like go this summer, these are the fragrances to take you there.”
The Reverse Sear Steak (Valet)
“It starts by roasting the steaks on a low heat to get the desired doneness, then searing it on a hot grill or skillet to achieve that deliciously crisp, smokey crust. This low-and-slow method flips the script of traditional steak prep and removes the guesswork, ensuring a tender and juicy center cooked just the way you like it.”
This is part of a series that features items bought from the U.S. and shipped to the Philippines using the consolidation and freight forwarding service Shipping Cart. Learn more about Shipping Cart.
I’ve been looking for a new pair of classic running shoes to add to my wardrobe. After picking up a pair of New Balance two years ago I wanted something with a sleeker silhouette. I set my eyes on the Nike Internationalist, an 80’s cult model which was reintroduced in 2014 to celebrate its 30th anniversary. Since then Nike has released premium versions (hence the PRM moniker) of the Internationalist that are made entirely in suede. Unfortunately, the PRM models never make it to the Philippines like many of Nike’s nicer sneakers.
What’s the difference between bespoke, made-to-measure and ready-to-wear? (Permanent Style)
“The revival of menswear in recent years, driven by a combination of enthusiasts, innovative menswear companies and internet communication, has meant that whether a man is looking to buy a single suit or an entire wardrobe, he has never had so many options. Unfortunately, that choice is often obscured by brands and their marketing – particularly when it comes to differentiating between bespoke, made-to-measure and ready-to-wear suiting. This difference is neither incidental nor arbitrary. It is crucial to the consideration that goes into buying a new suit, and can be tightly defined.”
The Life and Times of the Tactical Backpack (Huckberry)
“The influence of all this on everyday carry can’t be understated. Features like loadbearing back panels are staples in today’s tactical kits; MOLLE webbing is used on GORUCK, Heimplanet, and more or less any commercial pack brand trying to push the ‘tacti-cool’ edge; hydration bladders built into GORUCKS today give everybody the opportunity to ruck and suck down a little H2o while a bunch of cadres yell in their faces; to say nothing of cutting edge adjustable sizing frames like Mystery Ranch’s Futura Yoke. Functional boons aside, all these features are just as much there to make a good looking bag come off even more badass than it already is.”
Made In USA – Part I – Bill’s And The Downside Of Success (Nick Hilton)
“Building the kind of inventory levels necessary to support large, seasonal catalogs, the expansion of the product lines, sampling, graphics design and production, the basic infrastructure costs and overall expense of servicing a “multi-channel” business — all this requires major league dough, albeit the kind of financing that hedge funds and private equity funds usually consider small change. Nevertheless, such a “small” investment in a vanity venture (Made in America! Bill’s Khakis!) must have seemed like a great idea to some guys who wore them on the golf course, saw them advertised in the Wall Street Journal. And so, in this morality-tale, imaginary version of the story, a bunch of back-slapping private equity got put up and it was all champagne and catalogs until the fund took some unrelated lumps and some guy in the back room, the actual figures guy, the one that cares about only profits and performance, unconcerned about the silly notion of Brand Value, after a few months of witnessing typical apparel company performance, said, “We gotta pull the plug on this loser.” Sayonara.”
What is Tonka Bean? (GQ UK)
“Tonka bean is the seed of the catchily named Dipteryx odorata tree, or Coumarouna odorata, which is why it is also known as coumarin – the chemical isolate that is used in perfumery. It’s native to South and Central America and a common ingredient in many fragrances. Its usage dates back to the late 19th Century, and the main producers today are Nigeria and Venezuela. This edible, shrivelled black bean has a sweet aroma that is often likened to almond or vanilla, with undertones of tobacco, that can lend a creamy, warm element to a fragrance composition. The initial sweetness of the tonka bean is often balanced out by fresh or green elements in the composition such as bergamot, lavender, vetiver or mint.”
Shell Shock: The Growing Demand For The Horse Leather Known As Cordovan (Ivy Style)
“Middleborough, Mass.-based Alden, known for its quality and conservative styles, is another decades-long customer of Horween. “They treat us very fairly,” says president Robert Clark. “We don’t have a supply problem, we have a demand problem. Supply is not at historic highs, but nor is it really low. However, the demand for cordovan has skyrocketed.””