Sunday, January 30, 2011

Sel de la Terre

The pretentious name had kept us away for a while, but enticement from OpenTable sent us straight into Sel de la Terre's Back Bay adventure and dinner was wonderful.

The waitress's suggestion to add an organic duck egg from the chef's farm to the house burger seemed odd, but everything else was spot-on. We had a variation of sole meunier accented with toasted hazel nuts and brussels sprouts that'll make you forget the classic and our date had a braised short rib that melted in your mouth with just a hint of sweetness in the sauce.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Simone Dinnerstein

This industrious Brooklynite bankrolled her own Carnegie Hall debut and her 2007 recording of the Goldberg Variations with microloans from friends and neighbors. The recording, by the way, blows the Glenn Gould 1955 out of the water. Those friends and neighbors were on to something; she now plays Europe by invitation and she landed a contract with Sony Records.

Since we don't live in Brooklyn, we only just now heard of her through her new album, Bach: A Strange Beauty. The album is a set of her favorite Bach concertos and suites for keyboard and orchestra interspersed with chorales. The chorales are especially wonderful... The conventional wisdom is that Old Bach would sit around nights with a cask of sherry and play around with common church tunes, turning them into boozy songs. Hopefully that's true--and if so, he'd wholeheartedly approve of her interpretations.

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Black Swan

Beautifully done story. We were arguing today about how believable the protagonist's descent into insanity was, but so what if there is no clinical syndrome that matches the ballerina's mental disease. The genius was in the screenplay: it was Swan Lake told as a movie about the production of Swan Lake. The doppelgangers, both real and imagined, are every where!