food

CLEVELAND: ROCK AND ROLL CITY AND ITS RUST BELT REVIVAL
July 7, 2016 7:34 pm

Henri K. Rapp, Jeanette Sangston and Chayla Hope are constantly knee deep in the rock & roll scene of Cleveland, OH. I had the opportunity to talk to the artists about their relationship with this beautiful city and how its music scene has contributed to what they have now.

Who are you and what do you do?

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Henri K. Rapp – Photo by Evan Prunty

“I’m Henri K. W. Rapp, a Cleveland based Music Producer and Location Sound Mixer for TV/Film. I help run Bad Racket Recording Studio, where a lot of what I record is bands. We are fortunate enough to live in a city with some truly phenomenal artists, and I’m very glad to have had the opportunity to record some of them. At Bad Racket, we produce a music video series called ‘Live From Bad Racket.’ In the last year I have had the opportunity to work on a more diverse selection of projects than ever before; An 18-Piece orchestra in The Cleveland Art Museum, Strings for Cleveland Playhouse, Sound for TV Shows, as well as record with some great bands like Worship This!, Clementine, The Village Bicycle, Signals Midwest, and A Work Of Fiction.” -Henri K. Rapp

“My name is Jeanette Sangston. I am the Director of Sofar Sounds Cleveland. We curate secret, intimate shows once a month in unique spaces around the city, highlighting emerging talent.” -Jeanette Sangston

“I am a press operator at Gotta Groove Records and the lead singer of Seafair and Glitter Biscuit” -Chayla Hope

For the past 8 years that I’ve lived in Cleveland, Ohio, I have gone through a roller coaster of emotions. First off, I came from Anchorage Alaska, which made me a snobby brat. I held my head high thinking nothing could top the plethora of fresh fish, tourist attractions and the small, hometown feel that the tiny city offered. I was vastly wrong. This city has grown on me like ivy on an antique brick house, pulling relentlessly at my heartstrings.

For those who’ve never been here, you probably know it from the vast majority of terrible jokes against it like ‘Mistake on the Lake,’ ‘Cuyahoga River catching on fire’ and the “At Least We’re Not Detroit” fad to name a few. Cleveland is a small city, vibrant within the community with an ever blossoming and thriving music, food, and start up scene.

Cleveland is about to host the Republican National Convention. I’m a little worried as I work downtown as most friends and family do. That being said, I do know that we had 1.3 million people crowding the downtown area at the Cleveland Cavaliers championship parade, it being the biggest championship celebration in NBA history with little to no damage to the city. Are you listening, America?

What have you noticed lately in the music scene?

“One thing that’s stood out to me in recent times is up and coming labels from Cleveland, like Quality Time Records, Jurassic Pop Records, and Escapist Records who’ve been putting out some truly killer records. A lot of these releases have been cut to cassette tapes, or pressed to vinyl at Gotta Groove Records. They are a Cleveland based record plant that is one of the biggest in the country. We have a lot of friends who work over there. It’s also awesome to see cassette tapes make such a remarkable comeback as well.” -Rapp

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Chayla Hope at Jeanette Sangston’s Sofar Sounds – Photo By Ernie Joy

“Cleveland has always had a strong music scene, but it seems like there is definitely a new vibrancy. An injection of new energy. There seems to be a desire to shine the spotlight on our talent so that we can launch our artists to that next level…perhaps a national level. The realization that success for anyone in Cleveland means success for everyone; that the stronger our scene is, the stronger that spotlight is. There are so many people in Cleveland that value music…on every level…and work EXTREMELY hard to promote that value throughout the city. It’s really an awesome time to be involved in the Cleveland music scene. We have amazing talent and passion here.” -Sangston

“Its becoming more of a community. More people are supporting each other and collaborating. It’s a wonderful thing.” -Hope

On the west side, you can find a bustling downtown, the original Melt Bar and Grilled and Tremont, where you can dine at Michael Symons Lolita among other home grown eateries. Don’t worry, Trump likely won’t enter Symon’s, so if you’re looking for a safe haven during the convention you have Lola, Lolita and any of the B spot locations. But on the sprawling streets of the East Side harbor has Little Italy, a handful of art museums, University Circle at Case Western as well as some of the best hospitals (hopefully you won’t need those).

The historic Euclid Tavern is an old music venue, now home to the Happy Dog, where you can get Fruit Loops or almost any other unique topping for your hotdogs. Also if you’re looking to see national or even local acts in a small intimate atmosphere, you can hit up the Grog Shop where I’ve personally seen the likes of Saintseneca, Lucero and Nick 13. Further north in Collinwood you have the Beachland Ballroom/tavern. I recently saw Brian Fallon there and The Ohsees. The Beachland also has killer food. No kidding, you’ll cry while eating it.

How has the music scene changes effected your business and projects?

“This time of year is not only the busy season, but with an active music scene, all the film production and the RNC coming to town, I stay quite booked up at Bad Racket, doing location sound for TV shows, and mixing concerts at Mahall’s. We also have been shooting new ‘Live From Bad Racket’ videos faster then we can do the post production, so we are starting to have a nice cache of videos that we will be premiering soon.” -Rapp

“Well, there certainly seems to be no limit to the pool of talented emerging artists in Cleveland. Equally, there seems to be no limit to the amount of people willing to support and help out Sofar Sounds as well. I’m truly amazed at how generous people are when they are passionate about something. The music community is like no other. It binds strangers into family. As we grow our support, we’re able to amplify our voice throughout Cleveland and beyond.” -Sangston

What does Cleveland mean to you?

“Cleveland is a city of opportunity for people interested in creating something awesome. It’s a place where the cost of living is low, while still big enough of a city to be a cultural hub. This kind of environment is the perfect incubator for artists, musicians, writers, actors, or anyone who wants to pursue a creative career path. With more films and TV being shot here, and a surplus of great bands, it’s a great city to work in doing audio.” -Rapp

“Cleveland is home. I’ve lived here my entire life. It is the confluence of grit and culture; it is steeped in the past yet has the palpable energy of new growth. We can talk all day about all of the new construction, Public Square renovation, the revival of the Flats; but ultimately, the heartbeat of Cleveland is the people. And the energy, pride, and camaraderie was never more apparent than at the Cavs parade. THAT is Cleveland.’ -Sangston

“It’s home. Cleveland is growing exponentially. I’ve always found beauty in it, but now so many people are flocking here due to the Cavs, the food, the sights, and the booze (chuckles). Public square is helping immensely as well!” -Hope

Cleveland is a major believer in bringing new to live alongside the old, a lot of our old buildings are intact and are being reused by new up-and-coming businesses. As a transplant, coming from a relatively new state, I never had the luxury to witness much history, but it’s a wild dream imagining all those who have stepped through the same streets I currently walk through.

I work in downtown Cleveland at a market, but this place previously was a hardware store. With majestic lofts above the store, exposed ceilings and sprawling wood work, it’s a wonder this wasn’t built to be exactly what it is now: a trendy downtown market and grocery store.

What are some important aspects you think all outsiders should know before stepping into our world?

“I think people are surprised at generally how nice Clevelanders are. There may be some pre-conceived notions about us, but Cleveland is world class in every way. Food, sport, art, and music…we are the epitome of Rust Belt Revival. I would encourage any outsider to really dig in and sample the best the city has to offer. They surely won’t leave disappointed.” -Sangston

I believe Jeannette said it best. Cleveland has finished its rehab and it is completely clean now, including the brand new square which had its grand opening only about a week ago. We are a proud city, reeking of admiration for the skyline we see every time we drive up the Shoreway or fight our way through east side traffic to see the Key Tower, Terminal Tower, Justice center or the Guardians of Transportation and we know we are home.

DO WHAT YOU LOVE FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE: THE TB12 STORY
May 26, 2016 9:00 am

Tom Brady is the oldest non-kicker in the NFL, now that the ancient Peyton Manning and Charles Woodson have retired. When the almost-39-year-old is asked about his plans, he says “When I suck, I’ll retire.” A simple plan, like all good plans, but what’s left unsaid is how long he plans to not suck: as long as physically possible, regardless of precedent or previous definition of human capability. Brady entered the league in 2000 and won his fourth Super Bowl in 2015, but he hasn’t shown any of the typical signs of aging displayed by his contemporaries. He wants to play into his 40s, and he very well might. This professional longevity also happens to be his most valuable post-retirement asset, with everyone from here to everywhere clamoring for his secret fountain of youth. Brady’s personal interest in optimizing his own physical capability has turned into a viable long-term business strategy, and it’s coming together sooner than expected.

Tom Brady does not have your typical off-field quarterback personality. Most people might find him soft-spoken, maybe a little bit awkward. He plays golf a lot. He doesn’t model for Levi’s or Icy Hot, but for Ugg and TAG Heuer (and also Under Armour/Funny or Die, if you have a minute). He eats red meat, but only in the winter when it’s a “hot property” food, a reference to traditional Chinese medicine. He cried in public in 2011, reminiscing about the experience of almost not being drafted. He endorses off-brand health-conscious halloween candy along with his wife, legendary Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bündchen. She’s the celebrity humanitarian, recently renowned for her environmentalism, but Brady’s voice resonates similarly in a smaller industry more related to his career: health and wellness.

Through his experience in sports he’s developed a skeptical relationship with modern medicine, often utilizing more traditional methods instead. He emphasizes prevention over reaction and maintenance over time, adopting a holistic approach and a rigorous diet. Brady and Bündchen eat 80% vegetables, according to their private chef, and they withhold completely from most sugars, white flour, olive oil, iodized salt, tomatoes, mushrooms, dairy and caffeine (to name a few). Sometimes he’ll sneak a banana into a smoothie, but no fruit other than that. Meat is lean steak, chicken or fish, if any. His immediate goal is to reduce inflammation in his muscles–a common theme with professional athletes–but his passion lies in optimizing his diet and overall well-being, despite the low, low standards of today’s food industry. Brady has publicly questioned people’s ability to make healthy dietary choices, accusing Coca-Cola and others of lying to consumers and selling poison to children.

“That’s just America. We believe that Frosted Flakes is a food. You keep eating those things and you keep wondering why we do have just incredible rates of disease in our country.”

Brady established his health and wellness center, TB12, in 2014, focusing on individual clients’ peak performance and injury prevention. His own body is the product of this company, so he is his most compelling success story. TB12 focuses on preventative therapy, or what they call “prehab.” Most of this centers around muscle pliability, which in turn focuses on proper exercise, massage therapy, nutrition and hydration. But TB12 is a growing company, poised to be Brady’s life after football, and it recently established a nutritional division. Anyone interested in the aforementioned Brady/Bündchen diet need look not further than the TB12 Nutrition Manual, a “living document” designed to “support your TB12-aligned nutrition plan.” This book has handmade wooden bindings made to be unscrewed and rebound with new, seasonally inspired recipes every year. Combine that with the performance-sustaining knowledge within and we’re talking a cool $200 for the book. Well, except that it’s sold out right now, so you just have to wait.

It also’s also more of, like, a lifestyle than just the cooking and stuff, so it is therefore absolutely “not a cookbook.” Sure, maybe it’s a paper-based assemblage of cooking instructions, or perhaps even a “recipe collection,” but to oversimplify the product belies its intent as a cog in a much larger health and wellness machine. These recipes are not for you to impress your friends after book club. They probably won’t make you better at cooking, and they definitely won’t make you particularly full. Many of these recipes are nut-based, consisting of cashew cheese and walnut meat. Others seasonally emphasize certain organs (“in spring we love our livers, while fall is the season of the spleen”). You might need exotic ingredients to complete your meal, or hours of preparation for a relatively minor section of the dish. The book is large, fancy, and easily absorbs errant cooking liquids. The food isn’t very tasty, the book is way too expensive, and you probably don’t need it.

But that doesn’t mean it isn’t awesome.

Earlier this year I wrote about doing what you love and how if you really want to be something you should just go ahead and be it. Well that’s true for Andy Frasco and that’s true for Tom Brady; do what you love to do until it becomes your life. Build on the foundation that already exists inside of you. Most retired athletes either leave their competitive passion behind or go into one of several sports-related industries, but coaching, managing or broadcasting isn’t athletic. It’s business, entertainment, and a totally different skill set. Tom Brady doesn’t want to be on TV (without a helmet on, at least). He doesn’t want to stop doing what he loves, even for a moment, even if nobody’s watching, even if he no longer gets paid for it. Listen to him talk about his training and it’s obvious that, while he loves championships and all that, what he really lives for is the daily grind, the preparation, the physical commitment he puts himself through that has served him so well for so long. He goes to bed at 8:30 every night. He’s never touched coffee in his life. His favorite food is avocado-based ice cream (the recipe for which you can find in the nutrition manual). Teammates refer to his food as “that birdseed shit.” He lives and breathes this lifestyle every day of his very successful life. What a great idea, to create a lifestyle brand around a quirky byproduct of Tom Brady’s famous discipline. Obviously, on-field performance is his first priority for the foreseeable future, because that’s what his goal has been since he declined to play professional baseball in 1995. But maybe the smartest thing he’s done, other than decide to work hard at sports, is align his goals with his skills, his commitment with his passion, to turn what he loves into a convenient new life after football.

HEALTH NUTS REJOICE, THISTLE IS HERE
January 22, 2016 10:16 am

YOU: Health-conscious Californian, tech savvy but unwilling to sacrifice flavor for price.

YOUR BUDGET: Your budget is tight. You can’t afford all those fancy foods featured in health magazines. Gotta be frugal, for sure.

YOUR DIET: Fashionable. You’re up on the trends, down on your luck, and all over the place with your diet(s). You count calories, cut carbs, and constantly cook costly or crummy cuisine. Why can’t you just get nutritious food delivered to your door for less than the cost of going out?

YOU CAN: Yes that’s right, you read that correctly. It’s called Thistle and it’s only 10 dollars and 500 calories per meal. It’s also gluten and dairy-free, with the option for (free-range) chicken/beef, vegetarian or vegan. Unfortunately it’s servicing only the San Francisco Bay area at this time, so you’ll just have to be patient for now (unless you live in SF, in which case get over it already. We heard you, it sounds great. Put it back in the deck).

WHAT KIND OF FOOD?: Ah, so glad you asked. I was just getting to that, thank you. The food is seasonal and diverse, with elaborate names like Cardamom Overnight Oats w/ D’anjou Pears & Strawberries or “Cheesy” Baby Lacinato Salad w/ Great Northern Beans & Lemon Vinaigrette (with the option to add a Sous-Vide Chili Masala Chicken Breast). Lunches and dinners come with a corresponding protein option. “Dairy” products are in fact non-dairy and labeled thusly with quotation marks. The menu is posted two weeks in advance, so you know what you’re getting beforehand. This is important because the whole idea is not to worry about your meals (other than whether they’ll be delicious and/or nutritious). You’re a busy person. You’re so tired of your local, mediocre eateries every single day. You just want it done, and Thistle’s got you covered. “Put your diet on autopilot” they propose, “and start feeling amazing.” Goddammit Thistle you read my mind.

BUT I DON’T LIVE IN SF: I know, me neither. But it still sounds awesome, right? There’s a lotta good food out there, gotta go out and live a little. Pile on those potatoes, baby! Gimme that quinoa! Only 476 calories?! FUCK YEAH!

NO BUT I CAN’T BECAUSE I’M NOT FROM THERE: Hey if you’re just gonna keep putting me down I’m not gonna put up with it anymore. You can check that attitude at the door, my friend. It’s not getting you anywhere.

OKAY I GUESS IT’S STILL COOL: Yeah that’s what I thought. Life is about cooperation, know what I mean? Humanity and stuff. We’re all in this together. I’m glad you can appreciate that now.

THE INFATUATION: AN EMPIRE OF FOOD ENTHUSIASTS
December 8, 2015 2:55 pm

It doesn’t matter if you’re a fan of local indie bands, old-school punk rock, electronic music, or One Direction. We all have one thing in common: We love food. If you don’t, you’re probably in denial and you should keep on reading this article because you’ll be craving a cheesy New York style slice of pizza in no time.

With the rise of social media people have been obsessing over writing yelp reviews, checking in at their favorite restaurant on foursquare, and capturing the perfect photo of their poached egg so they can upload it on Instagram and hashtag #yolkporn. With a crazy food fanatic world out there, The Infatuation has made its way to the top in the food blogging industry. Chris Stang and Andrew Steinthal, just two guys who built an empire of food lovers out there. They now conquer 5 cities so far (New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Denver) and have their own hashtag #EEEEEATS trending nationwide. It’s clear that these former music industry working people take food very seriously. I had a chance to chat with Andrew about The Infatuation, music, and pizza.

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First of all, what do you guys call yourselves- Food critics, food bloggers, food enthusiast?

Mmm I would say that we’re just people who like food. Then again, everybody likes food. So I don’t know, I guess we are….Well, that’s a hard question. I’d say we like food like everybody else and just decided to write about it.

So you guys were in the music industry before The Infatuation.

For both of us music was our past. Since we were in high school even, that was the route we were headed down but by nature of the job. I was the VP of PR at Warner Bro’s Records and Chris was the VP of Marketing at Atlantic Records. By the fall when you’re in the music business for 13 years I would say the big part of it is that you’re out at shows all the time, consistently running around town going to see bands, entertaining bands, entertaining managers, and a big part of the job is out of the office. And obviously when you’re out to see a show at night, food plays a big role. Are we going to food before, are we going to food after…

Do you guys still keep up with the music scene?

For so long we went to so many shows and that was our entire life. We know what’s going on.

PizzalovesEmilyWere you into food as you were with music?

Would I say we liked it as much as music at the time? No. We started fielding calls from our friends who were finance guys, doctors, bankers, who weren’t out as much, and were looking for information because their parents are in town or want to take a girl out to impress them or whatever the situation was, we would get phone calls. Also at work they’d be like “K-Rock’s in town. He likes Mexican food, plan the night.” We were those planners and looked at each other and were like- people are coming to us for this information. Clearly, they’re not getting it elsewhere. There’s a need for a voice that speaks to people and real talk about restaurants.

Was YELP not a ‘thing’ yet?

We started in 2009 and Yelp was definitely a thing. I think we were kind of the anticipates of Yelp in a sense that you don’t know what opinion to trust on there. It’s a lot of white noise on that platform and it’s really hard to decipher what information to trust. It’s really useful for some things, but restaurants need some nuance that you really need a person you trust to guide you. The voice of a million people doesn’t really help a lot of times so we thought that there was a big opportunity to really try and make the expense of going to restaurants sort-able and divide it by category. Make it very real, honest and not pretentious. A lot of food media out there is very serious and very much representing of the chefs and the industry..We were just obviously not that and thought that there could be a real opportunity to become the voice of the people and make something super useful and help find restaurants. That was always kind of the goal. How can we help enrich people improve their lives by just having a good resource.

Who are some artists you dig currently?

Let me pull up our Spotify. We do a monthly Spotify Playlist! (Below). Hmm- I like Leon Else, The Japanese House, obviously the new Disclosure record. I’m all over the place. I just like good music. I’m a songs person so whether it’s dance, electronic, hiphop, alternative or indie- I’m all across the board. I’ve worked with artists in every range over my career, mainly because I was interested in everything and familiar with every kind of scene.

What’s your favorite post-concert food?

I’ve always been a post-show slice kinda guy. Especially if its a late one I’m like “alright I just need something before bed and I’m going to get a slice of pizza, so thats usually mine.

Since NYC is famous for their pizza- What are some underrated pizza restaurants here?

I mean it might not be underrated anymore but they’ve been getting a lot of attention in the past year. Pizza Loves Emily in Clinton Hill is fantastic! That’s my new favorite Brooklyn pizza by far. That place is absolutely worth the trip. I think Brooklyn Pizza is kind of underrated. I just like a classic slice pie and they have some of there other good stuff as well.

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Are any pizza places worth lining up for anyway?

Yeah. I mean, pizza’s one of the very few things I would line up for. I mean not too long. If the line is 40 minutes long at Grimaldi’s they’ve got problems because that is not worth waiting for. If you go make a trip to Di Fara deep into Brooklyn, THAT is absolutely worth any amount of minutes you have to wait and all $5 for the slice. That’s just your quintessential New York pizzeria.

You guys were part of the food curration for GovBall this year! How cool was that?

We’ve been friends with those guys over the years. Our backgrounds with music and we have a lot of relationships and we know that world really well and we worked together a couple of years ago on the media front and we helped simply blow up the food a little extra via social networks. Last year we’ve been in discussion and were like look, I think we could really help improve the food lineup and represent New York better. Last year was our first year that we curated the food lineup and we’ll do it again next year and we’re really excited because we brought in stuff that they didn’t have previously like the Ramen Burger or Tacombi Tacos

Do you think Instagram has been a big game-changer for food bloggers/enthusaists?

I think every social media platform has made it easy for everyone, whether you’re in food or writing about music or trying to write about cars…Whatever it is, internet’s given you the opportunity to say whatever you want. And it’s kind of up to you to see if you can come up with something different, unique and compelling enough to make people give a fuck. Instagram for sure has enabled especially in food. Most of these kids on Instagram don’t have actual websites or blogs. They’re just Instagram photographers going out there taking pictures to get likes- which is fine. But it’s made this whole thing pretty crazy.

What’s this new app you guys made where I can text a dinosaur?

We have a text message recommendation service called Text Rex where you can text us directly for restaurant recommendations. We have a whole system set up, but it’s always a human. You’re always talking to somebody and it’s always open 8:30am to 11pm everyday so you’ll always get a response within 5 minutes. And if you text at 3am you’ll probably get a message saying ‘hey you’re probably hammered and  probably want pizza so here are your options.’ People want what they want now. We hear from people all the time- they don’t want to sit there and go through the website. Its also good for us. It’s like having an amazing focus group of thousands and thousands of people everyday telling you what they want, so we made a lot of content decisions based on hearing what people say through Text Rex.

I think what we can get out from this is that you can do whatever you want. Don’t let anybody tell you that you’re not capable of doing it. And follow your dreams, even if it’s something as simple as taking artistic photos of your food.

Everything You Could Want (or Not) is On Evensi
July 29, 2015 10:00 am

Evensi is THE search engine for finding events all over the world. It’s basically the love child of Ticketmaster and Google Maps, and it’s not just for concerts either. Users can log in using their Facebook accounts for access to over 30 million activities, including music, sports, nightlife, culture, food, and fairs. There’s also a “Leisure” category that includes options like “flash mob” and “zombie.” Yes, you are living in the age where “zombie” is a leisurely activity. Welcome!

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The site utilizes an automated semantic algorithm, which analyzes every event posted, and uses this information to suggest activities to users based on their personalized dashboard. It is also possible to browse all events on an interactive map of the world. Manhattan alone currently lists 324 events happening in the near future while London, England features a similarly impressive 260.

Users can also create and post their own events to be shared with the Evensi community, as well as access links within Evensi to events they have sent an RSVP to on Facebook. After logging on to Facebook and creating my profile, Evensi suggested three events to me, including one called “JONATHAN TOUBIN is back from Europe & SHAKIN’ ALL OVER as primitive as can be FRIDAY!,” accompanied by a photo of Toubin dressed as Gilligan from Gilligan’s Island. Aside from Jonathan’s aggressive use of capitalization, I felt intrigued.

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If you’re on the fence about checking out Evensi, just give it a shot. It’s easy to log in (even if it’s your first time using it), and it’s cool to see what’s going on in your immediate (and not so immediate) area. It’s a useful tool for finding things to do while on vacation, or even if your parents are coming to visit and you don’t know what to do with them. Using Evensi, why not meet your parents halfway and take them to the Depeche Mode & 80’s Party Cruise coming up on August 1st?

Governor’s Ball Is Whatever You Want It To Be
June 15, 2015 2:20 pm

Last weekend’s Governor’s Ball music festival was fantastic. Everyone expects amazing music and exotic, quirky foods, but something very unique to this event is the attitude and the ambiance that can only be found on Randall’s Island. Governor’s Ball is admittedly not Coachella, the fashion week of music festivals, or EZOO the strange, beaded, bedazzled, acid trip of music festivals,  but it does have a distinct look of its very own, and that look is- whatever the hell you want it to be.

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While there was undeniably an abundance of flower crowns (myself included), FLASH tattoos and glittery accessories, we also saw sturdy workman boots, beautiful summery gauze dresses and every different look imaginable from the street savvy festival goers, to the artists themselves. You do not have to be a California hippie waif or a zonked out, neon pink, molly-popping tween. You can be either, or both, or anything in between.

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Florence Welch looked like a 70s flower child while Liz Nistico from HOLYCHILD was wearing an all white ensemble with bright and electric Sephora-esque eyeshadow and lipstick. The ladies of Clean Bandit wore black and white leotards with beautiful cascading skirts, Charli XCX channeled her inner animal (100% zebra print), Marina Diamandis wore a bright purple latex body suit, and Bjork was dressed like a butterfly. No one cared that there was a guy walking around all day with a 50ft flag that said “MORE BASS”, drunkenly waiting for DEAMAU5, the exact same way nobody cared that every sad girl in the tri-state area put on their best pout and flower crown for Lana Del Rey.

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This spirit was expressed in the lineup as well. Each headliner championed a different genre- hip-hop, electronic, pop and even old man country rock (I’m looking at you Ryan Adams). I personally have never experienced a better or more diverse crowd at another festival. The east coast’s answer to Coachella is not as large or as acclaimed, but maybe those factors work to its benefit. Where the expectations are not so rigid or expected and the lineup is so diverse and inclusive, every niche is welcome and every freak flag is flown. Governor’s Ball is easily the highlight of the NYC summer experience, and I cannot wait to see what it has in store next year.SONY DSC

Governor’s Ball Food Highlights
1:28 pm

You probably got a ticket to Governer’s Ball this year to kick off your summer by dancing to some good live music, have an excuse to wear flower crowns, and make long lasting memories with your friends. All of us probably did.

But let’s face it – the food lineup was pretty fucking epic this year. Governor’s Ball stepped up their food game by enlisting The Infatuation (one of the biggest food blogs out there) to help them curate a great food lineup! It’s been a week since the festival, and I needed that time to digest before filling you guys in on the amazing meals offered.

As a passionate foodie who has the need to instagram all her food, I was excited to hear this and couldn’t wait to #GovBallEEEEEATS all my instagram food porn. Here are some highlights I picked out according to what I ate, what my friends ate, and what I saw fellow govball-ers eat!

Fois Gras Doughnut from Do or Dine

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Now this is one hell of a fancy doughnut. I was a little hesitant at first since it was probably one of the most expensive food items at the festival. I ended up paying $15 for this treat, and it was well worth it.

Coconut Water from Co Co & Co

This coconut stand attracted a lot of hipsters, including myself who opted for coconut water as my own thirst quencher!

The Nugget Spot

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Finger foods are necessary at festivals when you want to grab something on the go, and eat while you watch your favorite bands play. These crispy chicken nuggets were necessary.

Ice Cream Sandwich from Davey’s Ice Cream

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It’s hot, the sun’s out, and all I wanted was a creamy, cold ice cream. I went with the speculoos ice cream sandwiched in between two massive chocolate chip cookies.

Pizza Nova

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You can never go wrong with a slice of good cheese pizza.

Grilled Cheese from Morris Truck

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We’re in America where everybody loves grilled cheese. Perfectly toasted crispy bread with some Cheese porn action….need I say more?

Sriracha Chicken Wings from Khe-yo

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The BEST chicken wings I’ve had in a while. If I could lather myself in that sriracha sauce, I would. I mean, just look at that chicken glisten!

Peach and Tomato Salad from Mayhem and Stout

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Festivals typically don’t have healthy options, but this salad fulfilled my healthy cravings. This cold salad was perfect to munch on while tanning in the sun.

Ramen Burger

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Last but not least, hands up to the ramen burger! Probably the most popular food at the festival that no one could resist, even if you had to wait 30 minutes for it.