Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Food frenzy at the Vienna Naschmarkt

We visited Vienna, one of my favourite European cities, for a few days earlier this month. It might not be as fashionable as Paris or have a thriving underground scene like Berlin, but I still have a brilliant time and find something new to see or do everytime I go there. This time we happened to be staying near the famous Naschmarkt, an open air market which has been in existence more than 200 years and which now includes numerous restaurant and cafes where you'll surely find any international cuisine you're craving.

For some silly reason we chose to go directly after our big buffet breakfast in the hotel, but I'm already planning my next trip and you can be sure it will involve a visit here on an empty stomach. Just take a look to see why...

A flowering artichoke used as decoration

A rainbow of deliciousness stuffed with creamy cheese

Cheeses, hummous and stuffed vegetables - so pretty this could be an ice cream counter

A close-up of those stuffed vegetables

Spicy green chili peppers

... and some red ones too

Fresh vegetables as far as the eye could see

The most appetising looking olives

Every kind of spice you could possibly need

Some weirdly shaped little squash-type things

The Naschmarkt can be found at the Wienzeile, 1040 Vienna; take the U4 Kettenbr├╝ckengasse or U4, U2 Karlsplatz to get there. Open from Monday to Saturday, make sure to get there early on Saturday for the best brunch options in the many restaurants.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Armani Manta Ray - Liquid Silk Eyeliner

I promised this a while back so apologies for the delay. I planned to take more decorative pictures but never got around to it, so here they are, carelessly swatched on the back of my hand in an unnaturally large close-up.

Available in two shades, these liners come in the same packaging as the High Precision Retouch Concealer and are the type where you dip the brush into the liquid. I usually find this type really messy to use, but because the liner is thicker than usual and really pigmented, I don't have too much of a problem with these once I got some practice and realised I could wipe off a lot of the excess product inside the neck of the bottle.

These colours are GORGEOUS. #1 is a metallic deep blue and goes exactly as it looks in the picture - it doesn't end up looking close to black. #2 is a medium grey with no shimmer, but a really glossy, almost plastic finish. This is a really modern shade and unlike any other liners I own, but dark enough to give proper contrast as a liner.

These are available now from Armani counters priced at €25.50 and of all the new products Armani has put out lately, definitely my favourite.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Storytime with Nick Cave

I hope you don't mind if I take a break from regular programming to bring you a bit of Nick Cave. I suppose I can make it style-related if I mention how sharp his suits always are and how his appearance in Vicar St. last night was no different. Though sadly shorn of his 70s-porn-star moustache (allegedly at the hand of his wife), he cut a dashing figure, as usual.

The blurry picture above was taken with my camera phone from the very back wall, hence the slight lack of quality. I can't really get down with the people who spend the whole gig taking pictures (especially if they leave the flash on and especially when they're seated 30ft or more from the stage...), but I thought I'd try it out to see for myself during a particularly divine performance of The Ship Song. And now I know... no more taking pictures with my camera phone during gigs for me.

Anyway, if you put your face up close to the screen and squint hard enough, you might make out Nick himself at the piano on the left, the Rasputin-like figure of Warren Ellis (who took to his minimalist drum-kit - one snare and a set of cymbals - with a vengeance on a rousing version of Dig, Lazarus, Dig!) and the unassuming Martin Casey in the middle.

The gig was to promote Nick's recently published novel, The Death of Bunny Munro and was billed as "an evening of reading, music and conversation", so what was with all the rude people filing out en masse each time Nick began to read an extract from the book? The bar wasn't even open during the performance, so no excuses there. Even if they had no interest in the book and were only there for the music (or the slightly dull "conversation", enlivened only by Nick's response to the girl who questioned whether he endorsed the main character's misogyny: "I'm f*cking insulted you have to ask that! Have you read the book? No?"), it still wouldn't have killed them to sit through the reading and not disturb everyone else who was interested.

Audience issues apart, great show

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Cocktail Jewellery attracts my inner magpie

Apologies for the broadcast silence over the last few weeks, as I've been away. Before I went away, however, I dropped into the Leinster Gallery to visit Cocktail Jewellery's pop-up shop.

Cocktail Jewellery is an Irish company which was established in 2008 with the aim of providing simple, classic jewellery designs at affordable prices and they have just added a bridal collection to their range. This includes traditional pearl necklaces, earrings and hair combs available, as well as pretty rose quartz pendants and earrings. I loved the Two-Style White Pearl Necklace, which can be worn doubled as a short string or opened out and worn as a long string (€185):

But you won't be lost for options if pearls aren't your thing - I was particularly taken with this gorgeous Silver Hammered Ring (€60 - this design is also available as a pendant or earrings):

And I loved the colour in this Cherry and Clear Quartz Necklace (€155):

Cocktail Jewellery will be available at the "Affordable Art and Jewellery Exhibition" at the Leinster Gallery in Dublin, October 29th - November 8th and I've a feeling that lovely ring will be calling me back. Jewellery can also be purchased online from the Cocktail Jewellery website.

Images courtesy Cocktail Jewellery