Moscow Invades the Eastside

One of my mom’s favorite movies is Dr. Zhivago.  As a little girl I would crawl up under her and we would watch Omar Sharif steal Julie Christie’s heart while my dad watched sheep jumping over fences.  Over the years the movie grew on me just as my affinity for Russian culture.  

As much as I do like Russian culture and food I had never tried authentic Russian cuisine until recently.  On East 20th Street is a quaint Russian restaurant named Mari Vanna.  The restaurant is named for a mythical woman, who welcomed diners into her home with open arms, feeding them traditional Russian food on her best china and linens and the restaurant certainly lives up to the legend.

Upon stepping inside I felt as if I had been whisked away from Manhattan and dropped into a home in Moscow where Yuri was waiting to recite one of his bittersweet “Lara” poems.  The décor, courtesy of designer Vera Tatarinova, is a Russian enthusiast’s dream filled with crystal bowls, picture frames, fine china, porcelain dolls, coasters, glasses and other precious collectibles.  The cozy furnishings and friendly staff made me feel like I was visiting my comrades instead of going out to eat. 

 For appetizers I had Soleniya, homemade pickled vegetables, and homemade blinis with red caviar sour cream, diced red onion and crumbled egg yolk.  I also had the opportunity to finally taste borsch with pampushka a soup consisting of beets, broth, beef, cabbage, carrots and potatoes.  It is served with sour cream and is beyond delicious.  Note to self:  winter is around the corner, stock up on borsch.  The only beef stroganoff I had tasted until recently was made by Stouffer’s, but after sampling the real McCoy, I could never go back to pseudo stroganoff again.  The beef was tender, the sauce delectable and my mouth was watering for more.

Another great feature of Mari Vanna is vodka.  The restaurant offers a diverse selection of house-infused vodkas.  My favorite was the beet flavored vodka.  The beet’s essence complimented the vodka well and masked some of the harshness.  Talk about a way to get your vegetables, if V8 tasted like that I would buy stock in the company. 

Mari Vanna is an unexpected surprise for any New Yorker that enters their doors.  Even if they may not have been exposed to traditional Russian cuisine before, I have no doubt they will walk out a fan.  The prices are fair and it is worth it.  There is no better dining experience then when the atmosphere, décor and food combine in symbiotic harmony and create a wonderful dining experience.  Nostrovia!

Jenny On Her Ass


Ok, I missed the Jenny from BX aka Jenny from da block aka J-Lo aka Jennifer Lopez performance and just saw this 40 year-old-woman bust her ass via YouTube.  With a hint of laughter I say this, Ms. Lo what were you thinking?  I’m sorry I had to laugh, but I would laugh at anyone that slips on their bum celebrities included. 

Don’t get me wrong, I am almost 40 (and I still get it in on the dance floor) so it is not about age here, but she hasn’t been putting it enough dance time outside of rehearsals for this performance to try that type of stunt on national television. 

I also understand that she is not necessarily on the top of the Diva heap and has to deal with the Ga Ga’s and Bey’s of the entertainment world; still I say tisk tisk Jenny.  Save stunts like that for tour so you can have more time to practice. 

What made the fall even worse is that she came on stage through the audience in a black silk boxer’s robe with Will Smith ala Ali chants of “The champ is here,” and Michael Buffer screaming “LET’S GET READY TO RUMBLE!”  It appeared that she was ready to knock out all these R&B and pop bitches and the only chick that landed on their ass was J-LO, so shameful.  I hadn’t cringe that hard since I saw old footage of Ali getting knocked down by Frasier at the Garden.  So did the champ really show up?

Of course she did!  The Bronx Bomber came to show her stuff and prove that a women in her 40’s can have a body that rivals any of these Gen Y bombshells, fall on her ass, get up fighting and still sashay into the audience as if nothing happened.  And as a fellow Leo she followed our astrological sign’s creed:  Go big or go home.  Yeah, she went big and it didn’t work this time, but I can guarantee that next time it will.  It is just the Leo way.  No worries Jennifer, your ass has always been the butt of J-Lo jokes (no pun intended) Sunday evening will serve as no exception.

Meat Anyone?

Sometimes when I look around at the city I can hardly recognize it.  Really, this city has seen more facelifts than Zsa Zsa Gabor.  One upgrade in particular that still makes me shake my head in amazement is the Meatpacking District. 

When I was a girl the Meatpacking District was known for large slaughterhouses, tranny hookers, the Mafia, drugs and sex clubs.  The vices in the meatpacking district almost overshadowed the meat and was one of the best places to find sin in New York City, outside Times Square of course.

Now Gansevoort Market is a far cry from the days when transsexual prostitute skulked around corners and the mafia ruled the slaughterhouses with an iron, Black Hand.  The Meatpacking District is one of the chicest areas in the city with restaurants, bars and clubs that play host to the fierce and fabulous as well as some of the best designer boutiques.  Some feel that the Meatpacking District has become too chic for real New Yorkers and is nothing more than a tourist haven like Times Square.  Maybe they are right, but something I learned from the tragedy of 911 is that you don’t take any part of this city for granted.  So without further adieu, here are my choices for the best that the Meatpacking District has to offer.


RdV                                 RDV Image

409 W. 13th Street New York, NY 10014    


After stepping down a dimly lit stairway, you arrive in a sexy subterranean chill zone.  RdV takes elegance underground with its plush Baroque style furniture and potted banana trees that add a tropical feel.  The candlelit private dining room is a hideaway within a hideaway and provides its diners with an intimate experience.  The cuisine definitely lives up to the opulent French setting.  I recommend Foie Gras Terrine for an appetizer and Truffled Chicken or Pan Seared Wild Stripped Bass for a main course.  RdV holds 150 guests and is the perfect lounge to drink and dine when planning a grown and sexy gathering with friends.

Bagatelle                       Bagatelle%20Interior                       

409 W 13th St, New York 10014


Above ground designer David Graziano, designer of RDV, created a posh French bistro.  Bagatelle has been dubbed the place to eat for the rich and trendy and is also known for their brunch.  I recommend Dimanche – Poule-au-Pot and the Potato Puree.  And if you are going to the Caribbean check out Bagatelle’s sister restaurant in Turks and Caicos.  Great food + great atmosphere = a complete dining experience.


Cielo                        ceilo                      

18 Little West 12th Street New York, NY 10014
212 242-8537

Besides the great décor, which resembles a log cabin, the sunken dance floor, and outdoor back yard that has heated lamps in the winter, this club plays host to some of the legends of dance music.  Francois K., Marques Wyatt, Jojo Flores, Junior Vasquez, and Roger Sanchez have all spinned in their DJ booth.  Louie Vega and Kevin Hedge hold their Roots party every week on Wednesday.  Cielo is an absolute must for anyone who seriously loves dance music.

Kiss & Fly                              Temple Perimeter View in Purple Light

409 W. 13th Street New York, NY 10014


With the opening of Kiss and Fly lavishness has been brought back to NYC nightlife.  This club caters to the sophisticated and fabulous.  Kiss & Fly is Dom Perignon’s flagship club in the United States. Fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld designed a mural for the club that is the backdrop to the $18,000 bottles of Dom Perignon that are on display and on the wine list.  Kiss & Fly also boasts 28 VIP areas with their own “private” dance floor that is raised behind the table.  Fire acts, aerial shows, stilted performances, fire throwers turn this nightclub experience into an extravaganza.


Hotel Gansevoort             hotel-gansevoort_3

18 9th Avenue New York, NY 10014


Just because you live in the city doesn’t mean you have to stay at home, the Hotel Gansevoort offers awe-inspiring 360 degree panoramic views of New York City and is the only luxury, full service resort in the Meatpacking District.  Hotel Gansevoort offers an elegant get away to its patrons.  The hotel has 187 guestrooms and 23 suites.  The rooms are lavish, but with a minimalist aesthetic. The duplex penthouse houses a Jacuzzi and fireplace.  Hotel Gansevoort also has 45-foot heated outdoor rooftop pool with underwater lights and music everyday as well as a swanky rooftop loft and spa. Designer David Graziano also places his stamp on the Hotel Gansevoort making the hotel the fourth business in the Meatpacking District that has been touched by his chic  style.  Upon walking out of the Hotel Gansevoort, be prepared to take on the cobbled-stone splendor of the new Meatpacking District.









Welcome To F.A.M.E NYC

F.A.M.E NYCWelcome to F.A.M.E NYC!

F.A.M.E NYC is an acronym for fashion, arts, music and entertainment and centers on one of the Meccas for all these industries, New York City.

“I love New York” is not just a slogan for us at F.A.M.E NYC.  We comment on the New York City we are privileged to witness everyday, and all the elements that makes New York City one of the greatest cities on Earth.

This online publication  is dedicated to New York fashion, arts, music and entertainment and is for any lover of NYC.

Included in the fashion segments will be models, designers, retailers, etc. that have locations in NYC as well as Fashion Week.

Our arts segments will include NY based artists, galleries, performance artists as well as Broadway and off Broadway.

Our music and entertainment segments will also come from a New York state of mind with special dedication given to NYC nightlife and dining.

We hope you will all come on this journey with us as we share with you our version of F.A.M.E in NYC and those who are on a quest for it.  There are a million stories in Big Apple, these are ours.