So this checklist is about two weeks late, but hey! fall is about two weeks late too. When I think November, I think dark greys and a nip in the air, leather jackets and enormous scarves. Breaking out the red wine, and mushroomy pastas, and settling into the dark days ahead. Unfortunately, all of this is quite difficult when it's a nice neat 65 degrees and the closest you're getting to your gloves is shoveling them out of the way as you dig your sunglasses out. But luckily, today the winds have quite literally changed, and the temperate has hit the 20s, and while immensely confusing, it's a relief. Welcome back, my friend.
Jazz in the west village (or anywhere, really): Years ago, the man declared fall the time of jazz and it's hard to argue with how stupidly cinematic it can be, sitting in a dark basement sipping a little something and gliding along. Find a Friday night show, or just turn it way up with the lights down low.
Visit Detroit: Detroit's a funny one. Over the last few years, it seems every publication has done a long piece on the city -- from the new generation moving in and hipstering it all, to the crumbling buildings. A place with an enormous amount of history, it's hard not to feel like a voyeur when deciding to visit without a local guide. But: it's still so worth it. We ended up there for less than 24 hours and even the barest, most touristy glimpse was fascinating. From breakfast pie at Sister Pie (that apple and gouda!) to the Rivera Murals at the incredible Institute of Art, on to the kitschy but charming Model T museum, and getting lost in the stacks at John K. King Used & Rare Books, it was an incredible mix. And in November, the leaves were glowing and the chill just bearable.
SPQR: Mary Beard's tome on ancient Rome came out years ago and I've been meaning to read it ever since. With a trip coming up at the end of the month (!), it feels time to break open the hard covers to learn more about the layers and personalities in one of my favorite cities.
Anchovies and all the delicious things at Hart's: From the moment it opened, Hart's in Bed Stuy (sister to the incomparable Cervo's in the lower east side) has been a food-magazine-instagram darling. It took me awhile to make it over, because honestly it sounded like every other trendy spot: a toast with clams, a lamb burger, good wine. All things that are great, but they're plentiful in this city and honestly don't come cheap. And then we went, and it could not have been more of a joy: the toast is gorgeous, (those who eat meat say) the burger with anchovies unparalleled, and the room so cozy and neighborhoody, it reminds you why Brooklyn is still the best.
Louise Bourgeois at MOMA: Ever since I stumbled across one of her St. Sebastienne prints in the hallway of the Met, I've loved Louise. A combination of playfulness and strength, her pieces are utterly distinct. The attic at Dia Beacon, filled with bodily sculptures and one of her largest, sinewiest spiders, is a perennial favorite. So when I discovered that a curation of her prints--bringing together some of her early work from the 1940s and pieces from the 1990s and 2000s, when she was well into her 90s--I was delighted. And having seen it, all I can say is go. Go now, go again.