Archive for the ‘books’ Category

Thought you might appreciate a heads up on this new cookbook! Just in time for the holidays, it’s filled with inspiring recipes for you or for the chef in your life!

Scheduled for release on October 30 2012, The Foothills Cuisine of Blackberry Farm: Recipes and Wisdom from Our Artisans, Chefs and Smokey Mountain Ancestors by proprietor Sam Beall “brings the inn’s artisanal food techniques and beloved recipes to every home cook – and along the way, reveals the secrets passed down through the generations in this rich and storied Southern region.”

Here is just a small sampling of recipes from the new book:

Skillet Corn Bread

Peanut Butter Pie

Zucchini Caesar Salad with Singing Brook Cheese Crisp

Vanilla-Roasted Peaches (wow!)

Available for pre-order via Blackberry Farm…click here for more info!

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“My book is a meditation on how to live. It’s an old-fashioned idea, but you should always try to do what you love to do.” ~ Annie Leibovitz

Annie Leibovitz’s recent photographic journey is a bold departure from her iconic portrait and fashion photography…published by Random House in 2011, “Pilgrimage” is a highly personal exploration of people, places and things that have significant meaning to the artist ~ a collection of handmade pastels by Georgia O’Keefe, the darkroom of Ansel Adams, Emily Dickinson’s only surviving dress…she captures their essence, their soul, without a face but with an intimate look at their beloved possessions…

Cactus and dogwood specimens pressed by Emily Dickinson as a girl

The astonishing natural power of America’s most famous geyser, Yellowstone National Park

A collection of handmade pastels in the O’Keefe Research Center in Santa Fe

A red hill behind O’Keeffe’s Ghost Ranch, New Mexico, that looms large in her paintings

A glass negative of a multiple-lens portrait of Lincoln made on Feb. 9, 1864, by Anthony Berger at the Brady Gallery in Washington, D.C.

A door in the adobe patio wall of Georgia O’Keefe’s home in Abiquiu, N.M.

Emily Dickinson’s only surviving dress at the Amherst Historical Society in Amherst, Mass

Martha Graham Center of Contemporary Dance warehouse in Yonkers, N.Y.

Annie Oakley’s heart target ~ one of Oakley’s most popular stunts was shooting through the center of a small heart on a card from around 40 feet away

The darkroom in Ansel Adams’s home in Carmel, Calif., now owned by Mr. Adams’s son, Michael, and his wife, Jeanne, friends of Ms. Leibovitz

The gloves Abraham Lincoln wore the night he was assassinated

Sigmund Freud’s couch in his study at 20 Maresfield Gardens in London

All photographs by Annie Leibovitz from her book “Pilgrimage” ~ Resources  – NY Times, Vogue, Wall Street Journal, NPR

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“Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.” ~ Charles W. Eliot

Wishing you a lovely weekend!

Hallberg & Wisely


J. Randall Powers

Jacques Grange

James Huniford

John Minshaw

John Saladino

Juan Pablo Molyneux

Kara Mann

Karin Blake

Lars Bolander

Lauren Gold

Luis Bustamante

Magnus Lundgren

Mary McDonald

Meichi Peng

Michael Smith

Michele Bonan

Miles Redd

Nina Griscom

Richard Shapiro

Robert Couturier

Sheila Harley

Steven Volpe

Suzanne Rheinstein

Ted Tuttle

Thomas Jayne

Thomas O’Brien

Tricia Huntley

Vicente Wolf

William Frawley

Windsor Smith

Yves Saint Laurent

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whether they’re stacked on the floor or alphabetized on ornate custom shelving, books are an essential part of our daily lives…a true reflection of our passions and professions…more tomorrow!

Karl Lagerfeld

Albert Hadley

Alexandre de Betak

Andy Newcom

Bill Blass

Brigitte & Alain Garnier

Bunny Williams

Charles Spada

Christopher Knight and Carlos Aponte

Cristina Azario

David Kleinberg

Dransfield and Ross

Garagnani and Poccianti

Gil Schafer

Greet Lefevre

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If you find yourself searching for a unique gift idea, you may want to consider this gorgeous book published by Rizzoli titled Masseria: The Italian Farmhouses of Pugliawith breathtaking photos by Mark Roskams and original essay’s by architect and scholar Diane Lewis, this book thoughtfully explores the beauty of Italy’s sun drenched southeast coast brimming with ancient architecture and sublime landscapes…may you enjoy this inspiring sneak peek!

“Masseria: The Italian Farmhouses of Puglia is a pictorial feast with 200 color photographs of restored farm buildings whose spaces are both austere and luxurious. The simple yet open rooms of the masserie (plural for masseria) have kept their original charm with stone fireplaces, arched hallways, and magnificent marble floors. The rustic colors of Italy’s sun-drenched coast are beautifully set against dazzling white backdrops of medieval stucco and stone in a volume which will inspire lovers of architectural history and culture with the details of the rustic and modern charm of this distinctive architectural style.” ~The Italian Tribune

photographs by Mark Roskams via Italica

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“My source of inspiration comes from everywhere. I have always let my mind run free.” ~ Muriel Brandolini

Published on October 1st 2011, The World of Muriel Brandolini: Interiors showcases this fearless designers colorful and unexpected style…half Vietnamese, half French-Venezuelan, her global influences are an integral part of her creative process…today’s photos are just the tip of the iceberg, a sneak peek at some of the extraordinary interiors featured in her new book…to see a wonderful video interview with Muriel Brandolini on vogue.it, click here…there is an intimacy to this interview that I think you will really enjoy…her voice, her beauty, and the visual world that surrounds her…it’s a beautiful look at her life and inspirations

photos from Muriel Brandolini

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“Beauty meets quality of life” ~ David Kleinberg

Traditional Now: Interiors by David Kleinberg is the first book to showcase the Manhattan decorator’s work…an alumnus of the legendary Parish-Hadley, he is passionate for clean lines, neutral colors and a well curated mix of antiques, fabrics, textures, finishes, art and objects…the book features over twenty projects including an intimate look at his own residences…today’s post highlights some of my favorite interiors from his artful website…think of this as an amuse bouche to his thoughtful and informative new book!

“In every apartment or house there should be a cohesive thread that starts at the front door and continues to the back hall. It is the design equivalent of a trail of bread crumbs…People always worry about mixing antiques with reproductions. The key is to respect the scale of the antiques…In decorating, most people associate texture only with fabric; in fact, all materials have texture.” ~ David Kleinberg

photos and resources from David Kleinberg

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On my recent trip to Maine, I discovered a wonderful book by E.B. White titled, One Man’s Meat…published in 1942, the book contains fifty-five essays depicting the author’s life on a saltwater farm in New England…I want to share with you an exceprt from his essay titled, Once More to the Lake, August 1941for me, his writing connects so deeply with what I was feeling last week…a return to the familiar…a passion for nature…

“One summer along about 1904, my father rented a camp on a lake in Maine and took us all there for the month of August. We all got ringworm from some kittens and had to rub Pond’s Extract on our arms and legs night and morning, and my father rolled over in a canoe with all his clothes on; but outside of that the vacation was a success, and from then on none of us ever thought there was any place in the world like that lake in Maine. We returned summer after summer – always on August 1st for one month. I have since become a salt-water man, but sometimes in summer there are days when the restlessness of the tides and the fearful cold of the sea water and the incessant wind that blows across the afternoon and into the evening makes me wish for the placidity of a lake in the woods. A few weeks ago this feeling got so strong I bought myself a couple of bass hooks and a spinner and returned to the lake where we used to go, for a week’s fishing and to revisit old haunts. I took along my son, who had never had any fresh water up his nose and who had seen lily pads only from train windows. On the journey over to the lake I began to wonder what it would be like. I wondered how time would have marred this unique, this holy spot – the coves and streams, the hills that the sun set behind, the camps and the paths behind the camps. I was sure that the tarred road would have found it out, and I wondered in what other ways it would be desolated. It is strange how much you can remember about places like that once you allow your mind to return into the grooves that lead back. You remember one thing, and that suddenly reminds you of another thing. I guess I remembered clearest of all the early mornings, when the lake was cool and motionless, remembered how the bedroom smelled of the lumber it was made of and the wet woods whose scent entered through the screen. The partitions in the camp were thin and did not extend clear to the top of the rooms, and as I was always the first up I would dress softly so as to not wake the others, and sneak out into the sweet outdoors and start out in the canoe, keeping close along the shore in the long shadows of the pines. I remembered being very careful never to rub my paddles against the gunwale for fear of disturbing the stillness of the cathedral.” ~ E.B. White

photo by me ~ eagle lake, mount desert island, maine

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Lucky for us, Blackberry Farm proprietor Sam Beall authored a cookbook titled The Blackberry Farm Cookbook, Four Seasons of Great Food and the Good Life…released in the fall of 2009, this book is a passionate collaboration reflecting the hard work of countless chefs, servers, farmers, and friends…woven among the recipes are stories about the history of the region and photographs that capture the beauty and magic of Blackberry Farm…to whet your appetite I’ve included their recipe for Blackberry Cobbler along with some mouthwatering photos by Beall and Thomas Photography…if you are interested in purchasing a copy of this stunning book, click here …if you already own a copy, please share with me some of your favorite recipes!

“I admire the Blackberry Farm ethic — the reverence for place and people, the dedication to artisanal excellence, the trust in long-held traditions, and the belief that, as Wendell Berry once put it, eating is an ‘agricultural act.”  John T. Edge

Blackberry Farm’s Blackberry Cobbler


8 cups fresh blackberries

1 1/4 cups sugar

Zest and juice of 1/2 lime

1 Tbs. cornstarch

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/4 tsp. baking powder

1/4 tsp. baking soda

1/8 tsp. fine sea salt

6 Tbs. (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, cut into small cubes and chilled

1/4 cup buttermilk


Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F

In a large bowl, toss together the blackberries, 1 cup of the sugar and the lime zest. In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice and cornstarch until smooth. Drizzle the lime juice mixture over the blackberry mixture and toss to combine. Scrape the blackberry mixture into a 10-inch cast-iron skillet and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and the remaining 1/4 cup sugar. Use you fingertips to rub the butter into the flour mixture until it is the texture of coarse meal. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. Pour the buttermilk into the well and stir with a fork until the mixture comes together. Crumble the dough evenly over the top of the blackberry mixture in the skillet.

Bake the cobbler until the blackberry filling is bubbling and the topping is golden brown, about 40 minutes. Let the cobbler rest for 10 minutes before serving. Serves 8.

Recipe from The Blackberry Farm Cookbook ~ Photos by Beall and Thomas Photography

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Simply titled “Molyneux”, this book explores more than a dozen projects ranging from a Beaux Arts mansion in the heart of Buenos Aires to a Park Ave penthouse. Complete with Molyneux’s personal insights and strategies, this book is definitely going on my list of must haves. My favorite, the cover! It is a photograph of the Palladian Dog House Molyneux designed for a Kips Bay Showhouse. His client? Max, his beloved Scottie dog! At just 3 feet square, it is complete with real marble floors, artful tromp l’oeil painting (notice the scottie dogs!), a portico in front with Corinthian columns and a pediment. I better not show this to Mimi and Bella! They will want their own Italian Greyhound palace! (come to think of it, they are quite happy with a simple gaze out the back window!)

Wishing you a wonderful weekend!

photo of mimi and bella by me

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