good reads | 37

norman hardie vineyardsI love a thoughtful link roundup as a way to discover the fantastic writing others are reading and sharing online. Here are my good reads from the week that was.

Good Reads

Semi-old but exciting news: Canada’s Ben Ing has taken over the kitchen at Noma. 

My employees are amazing people, and I’m always thinking about how I can be a better boss, in turn. 

As a consummate hostess and wife of a Cowboys’ fan, I enjoyed this behind-the-scenes article about securing a coveted invitation to Jerry Jones’ suite at Cowboy Stadium. 

About half-way through my sommelier training, I get this question a lot — “What do you like to drink?” This is a smart list for the novice buyer who wants reliably good wine… and to it, I’d add: Niagara riesling, most anything coming out of the Jura and a recent kick for Sancerre between $20-30. On a related note: we loved the new Esquire miniseries, Uncorked.

Long form: Where to begin? I spent two weeks on holiday at the start of the year, so 2016 began with many good reads. Notable: Jonathan Franzen’s Purity was top notch as expected, keeping me riveted to the last page. I whizzed through the 2015 cult favourite, Girl on the Train, on our train ride home (I’m sure the film rights were whipped up in seconds…). Lauren Groff, who penned my favourite read of 2015, delivered with an earlier work, Arcadia

Other Roundups to Love

Fathom’s Links We Love (updated Saturdays)

Food52’s Weekend Reading (updated Sundays)

101 Cookbooks’ Favorites List (last updated: 2015/12/02)

[lead image: my own, Norman Hardie’s vineyards, 2015]

Good Reads on Some Infinite Thing is updated every Friday (or Saturday) morning.

good reads | 36

mast brothers chocolateI love a thoughtful link roundup as a way to discover the fantastic writing others are reading and sharing online. Here are my good reads from the week that was.

Good Reads

I’ve never understood the hype over Mast Brothers’ perfectly-mediocre-if-beautifully-packaged chocolate, so this article made a ton of sense.

When Toronto finally decides to get cold, I’m making like a Norwegian and embracing winter. 

To those Americans fleeing President Trump: welcome to Canada!

Last year at this time, an article about relative unknown Elizabeth Holmes made my best of 2014 list. A year later and I’m still utterly compelled by the Theranos CEO and her company’s evolving story.

Do you see a square?

We’ve been exploiting this first year in our beautiful home to host friends, family and colleagues through the holidays. Both this sticky cranberry gingerbread and spiced pear upside-down cake were big hits, served up with a little unsweetened whipped cream.

King Richard III tries his hand as Dear Abby to the Republican presidential hopefuls.

Long form: This week I read Tracey Lawson’s A Year in the Village of Eternityafter picking it up on a whim from my local library branch. It’s a beautiful food memoir that spans the author’s year in the village of Campodimele, Italy — the village of eternity — where people live abundant, long lives. The book is sectioned month by month with the ebb and flow of the harvest — tiny broad beans and baby artichokes in April, peperoncini and tomatoes in September, and so on. Each chapter is devoted to an ingredient’s story with a few recipes to match. It was a speedy, happy read that left me with a dozen new recipes and deepened commitment to eating the seasons.

Other Roundups to Love

Fathom’s Links We Love (updated Saturdays)

Food52’s Weekend Reading (updated Sundays)

101 Cookbooks’ Favorites List (last updated: 2015/12/02)

[lead image: Mast Brothers’ gorgeous product packaging]

Good Reads on Some Infinite Thing is updated every Friday (or Saturday) morning.

good reads | 35

justin-trudeau-prime-minister-canadaI love a thoughtful link roundup as a way to discover the fantastic writing others are reading and sharing online. Here are my good reads from the week that was.

Good Reads

Inadvertently, here’s Good Reads #35: the I <3 Canada edition… love my country.

#welcomerefugees — I have been so proud and humbled to work on this file.

Trudeau’s Canada, again. Excellent longform from last weekend’s New York Times Magazine.

How ’bout a little more big American journalism loving on PM Trudeau? This time, in the January 2016 issue of Vogue.

Just in time for our 150th birthday, a Canadian typeface to merge the country’s many languages. 

Canada named the world’s most respected country.

And on a lighter note, much love for Toronto’s fatter-than-usual squirrels.

Long form: The best book I will read in 2015 arrived in December. Lauren Groff’s Fates and Furies was an ambitious, brilliant and layered read. I did not glimpse at a single review before I stepped into this book — and I hope everyone who reads it does so with the same virgin eyes — it was splendid to have the story collapse upon and expand into itself without any preconceived expectations. So: read the book. Then — and only then — read the (rightly) praise-laden reviews. 

Other Roundups to Love

Fathom’s Links We Love (updated Saturdays)

Food52’s Weekend Reading (updated Sundays)

101 Cookbooks’ Favorites List (last updated: 2015/12/02)

[lead image: Norman Jean Roy forVogue, January 2016]

Good Reads on Some Infinite Thing is updated every Friday (or Saturday) morning.

good reads | 34

PANTONE-Color-of-the-Year-HiRes-1-1024x768

I love a thoughtful link roundup as a way to discover the fantastic writing others are reading and sharing online. Here are my good reads from the week that was.

Good Reads

By now, you’ve already read this piece, but it’s worth sharing such stunning long-form again: Megan Phelps Roper and her slow untangling from the Westboro Baptist Church. Excellent, considered journalism.

I’ve spent a bit of time thinking about the central tenet of this article: that easy cooking is a myth. It takes time, effort and planning to cook dinner each night and I’m grateful to have that luxury during this season of life.

On that note, the 10 most memorable meals in literature. Many more examples have been shared in the comment section — and I would add this passage from Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast:

“As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans.”

What we already know to be true, verified: your adult siblings are the key to a long and happy life. I’m grateful to have best friends in my three adult sisters. So much of this article resonated with me: these are the women with whom I talk every single day, with whom I first share in the most glorious and devastating bits of live,  without whom I would be lost and someone entirely else, lesser.

Rose quartz and serenity, Pantone’s 2016 Colors of the Year.

A French couple sues Airbnb for replicating the interior design of their apartment.

Long form: I love chef memoirs, so couldn’t wait to pick up Cat Cora’s new book, Cooking as Fast as I Can. We half-Greeks share a kindred spirit and I suppose I was predisposed to enjoy this read. But Cora’s candid look into her relatively private public life — growing up in the old south, adoption, coming out, the gruel of cooking school, opening successive businesses, a marriage and four children — made me like her even more on the other side.

Other Roundups to Love

Fathom’s Links We Love (updated Saturdays)

Food52’s Weekend Reading (updated Sundays)

101 Cookbooks’ Favorites List (last updated: 2015/12/02)

[lead image: Pantone’s 2016 Colors of the Year]

Good Reads on Some Infinite Thing is updated every Friday (or Saturday) morning.

good reads | 33

alana phillips

I love a thoughtful link roundup as a way to discover the fantastic writing others are reading and sharing online. Here are my good reads from the week that was.

Good Reads

Not going to lie, I’m loving the attention our global neighbours are giving new Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau. See: paper dollssome really spectacular dance moves and Emma Watson. And on a more serious note, can we collectively be impressed by how qualified, progressive and diverse his newly-sworn-in Cabinet is?

A new study shows that children raised with no God are more generous and tolerant

For my fellow colour system nerds: how Pantone became a global authority on colour. (And on that note: one of my favourite Instagram accounts.)

I’ve visited many incredible cathedrals in my time, but none rivals the Sagrada Familia. 133 years later, she’s finally nearing completion. 

Beyond the honeycrisp apple. 

Long form: I’ve been on a bit of a non-fiction kick of late, and picked up Wednesday Martin’s Primates of Park Avenue after reading a glowing recommendation from Amy Chua (of the in-famous Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, a book I loved) and in spite of its god-awful cover. I love a tell-all memoir as much as the next person…

I started off enjoying this book but it went downhill a couple chapters in. Martin has a PhD in anthropology from Yale — and it shows in her application of this discipline’s theories to her “field work” observing the Upper East Side moms (which, again, started off as a fun construct, but started to feel force-fit and superficial further into the book).

I just couldn’t get beyond how the book smacked of privilege and a lack of irony — here’s a multi-millionaire outsider poking at the lifestyles of her billionaire neighbours. (The 30+ pages devoted to the author’s quest for a Birkin were particularly grating.) And in follow-up reading (which I always seem to do with non-fiction) I was dismayed to uncover more than one story that called into question the veracity of the entire memoir.

It’s too bad — because this book could have been a studied and self-critical look at the entrenched culture of privilege that permeates segments of many wealthy cities, especially given the author’s own vaulted status.

Other Roundups to Love

Molly Yeh’s Friday Links (updated Fridays)

Fathom’s Links We Love (updated Saturdays)

A Practical Wedding’s Happy Hour (updated Fridays)

Elise Blaha Cripe’s Weekend Links (updated Saturdays)

Food52’s Weekend Reading (updated Sundays)

101 Cookbooks’ Favorites List (last updated: 2015/08/08)

[lead image: Alana Phillips’ whip-smart take on our new federal Cabinet]

Good Reads on Some Infinite Thing is updated every Friday (or Saturday) morning.

good reads | 32

flower house detroitI love a thoughtful link roundup as a way to discover the fantastic writing others are reading and sharing online. Here are my good reads from the week that was.

Good Reads

Mexico’s incredible uncovered underwater temple. 

The Flower House was the loveliest thing to bloom in Detroit in a long while.

Fellow frequent flyers: good news — these days, your checked bag is 21% less likely to become lost. But I still recommend you skip checking bags, entirely.

A riveting piece on Marie Henein, the criminal lawyer set to defend Jian Gomeshi.

The $70,000 minimum wage. 

Yikes. Not sure how this passive aggressive ad campaign got through Airbnb’s PR team.

Long form: I was sucked into Elizabeth Egan’s debut novel, A Window Opens, after reading about it on one of those “GOOP’s 10 Summer Must-Reads” lists, or some similar click-bait.

It was an easy (I suspect, hotly autobiographical) page-turner… but my life is about 10 years behind the protagonist, Alice, with respect to everything, which made it difficult to relate. A frustrating career, myriad family obligations and crumbling social life paint a picture of the “million balls in the air but none juggled particularly well” phenomenon of the late-30s career woman who wants it all. Still, Egan’s writing was smart and fun, and I’ll probably pick up her next effort. (And I loved reading Jenny’s opposing reaction to the book from earlier this week.)

Other Roundups to Love

Molly Yeh’s Friday Links (updated Fridays)

Fathom’s Links We Love (updated Saturdays)

A Practical Wedding’s Happy Hour (updated Fridays)

Elise Blaha Cripe’s Weekend Links (updated Saturdays)

Food52’s Weekend Reading (updated Sundays)

101 Cookbooks’ Favorites List (last updated: 2015/08/08)

[lead image: The Flower House]

Good Reads on Some Infinite Thing is updated every Friday (or Saturday) morning.

good reads | 31

eleven madison park daniel humm

I love a thoughtful link roundup as a way to discover the fantastic writing others are reading and sharing online. Here are my good reads from the week that was.

Good Reads

My favourite band sings my favourite Christmas song. (Is it too soon for carols?!)

The sanitized stories we tell. (Apart from conveying a poignant message, this article is the opposite of lazy storytelling. It’s difficult, it’s thought out, it has movement and lilt.)

The 2016 NYC Michelin rankings were released this week. With the current list, I’ve eaten 31 stars. Time for a trip to New York City!

I was riveted the entire time I read this piece on Jennifer Keesmaat, Toronto’s punchy, smart, honest Chief Planner.

Go, Joe, go!

Long form: I’ve been eager to read Molly Wizenberg’s Delancey, the story of how her husband opened a restaurant and how it almost ruined her life, for some time. I’ve read her blog, Orangette, since its very early days and enjoyed her voice in A Homemade Life, so I couldn’t place why her new book just… bothered me. I took to goodreads as I often do in these circumstances and found a review that hit my frustrations with the book straight on:

While Delancey is an interesting account of the opening of a small business and its toll on a marriage, the book was ultimately marred for me by my increasing irritation with Molly Wizenberg. The way she blamed her pursuit of “excellence” for why she couldn’t handle being a restaurant chef was the last straw for me.

I’m probably biased as a former restaurant worker, but her socialist utopian idea of what she wanted her restaurant–a restaurant she didn’t even want in the first place–to be, coupled with a neurotic inability to do much except, seemingly, agonize about why it wasn’t happening was immensely off-putting to me. It could have been worse: fretting is, after all, much better than whining.

But it was still hard to read, and I almost gave up altogether when she pulled out the extended reference to Singles (that could have just as easily applied to Cheers, as well as to a number of other TV shows/movies with a regular watering hole.) I loved Singles, too, but come on. [Maria adds: Yes, there were too many “kill your darlings” scenes in this book… where was her editor?] 

I think part of the problem is that she paints her husband as the hero of the piece, placing herself at a comparative disadvantage. She isn’t quite the villain, but her self-depiction is unflattering and, ultimately, hard to sympathize with.

Other Roundups to Love

Molly Yeh’s Friday Links (updated Fridays)

Fathom’s Links We Love (updated Saturdays)

A Practical Wedding’s Happy Hour (updated Fridays)

Elise Blaha Cripe’s Weekend Links (updated Saturdays)

Food52’s Weekend Reading (updated Sundays)

101 Cookbooks’ Favorites List (last updated: 2015/08/08)

[lead image: our menu choices from last summer’s visit to Eleven Madison Park]

Good Reads on Some Infinite Thing is updated every Friday (or Saturday) morning.