Wednesday, October 10
Lucy Liu by the Numbers
In New York, a night can often be of two minds—two disparate occasions, with opposite crowds, on far-off edges of Manhattan. Take Wednesday, for example. Lucy Liu is having friends over to the Tory Burch boutique, a tony edifice up on Madison Avenue, to celebrate Seventy Two, her exhibition based on the Book of Exodus that opened this month at Salon Vert in London. It comprises 72 works, inspired by Chinese calligraphy and butterflies, and follows a theme inspired by the 72 names of God from the Bible. (Did we mention it’s called Seventy Two?) And it looks like, for Ms. Liu, books beget books—a hardcover coffee table rendition of the show will be released Nov. 1. But don’t think it’ll be easy to get your hand on one: it’s quite the limited edition, with only—wait for it—72 copies being made. Ten percent of sales at the store will benefit UNICEF, but why not stay on-theme, and donate 72 percent? Just saying.
Flat out not feeling Tory Burch tonight? What about a mild-mannered blues duo and some pretty stellar cell phone reception? Over at espace, a Room of Requirement over on 42nd near the Hudson, T-Mobile is celebrating the launch of two gadgets with cumbersome names—the Samsung Galaxy S II and the HTC Amaze 4G—with a performance from the Black Keys, two Akron boys with a few bar chords and hearts of gold. It’s hard to keep track of what the Keys are up to these days, what with all their Rza collaborations, but we’re pretty sure they still sound like a rock band. But if you think it’ll be awkward when you pull out your iPhone for the requisite “Oh, wow, it’s that song that band plays!” picture, maybe skip this one. (Miss you, Steve!)
Seventy Two: Lucy Liu book party; 797 Madison Avenue, 7 p.m.; invitation only. Special performance by the Black Keys, espace, 635 West 42nd Street, 9 p.m.; invitation only
Thursday, October 13
If You Want Denim, Join ’Em
The unmistakable characters were spotted on subway trains, Times Square billboards, front-page newspaper ads and email inboxes. What were they, what did they say, what did they mean? On the left, Japanese characters. On the right, those characters translated. The word was UNIQLO, in that red and white box. And why? Oh, just the first tremors of the retail store’s inevitable world domination. Things get started Thursday night with the opening of a new flagship, where founder Tadashi Yanai will be holding court. Come stop by before every evacuated Gap space gets filled with super-cheap Japanese denim.
UNIQLO NEW YORK flagship opening, Fifth Avenue at 53rd Street, 7 p.m.; small dinner to follow at Monkey Bar, invitation only.
Friday, October 14
Beers to Ya!
In September, the 21 Club—perhaps the best Old New York lunch spot—did the unthinkable. Along with your choices of either a gin martini or, um, a gin martini, the restaurant would now be offering beer. On tap. The nerve! The new corner of the restaurant is called Bar 21, with bar stools that befit jeans, and a lax sport-coat policy. On offer is a small but satisfying list of lunch fare, and after 4:00 patrons can nibble on tasty snacks. But September’s gone, and October calls for something heartier. Something more festive, that is. If you’re already salivating over the thought of bratwurst and pretzels, you’re on the right track. Bar 21 is now serving its Oktoberfest menu, so stop on by for some of Germany’s finest flavors. Veal schnitzel is accompanied by lemon, fennel and cucumber salad, or there’s the charcuterie plate, which includes aged ham, barrel pickles, Tilsiter cheese, rye bread and sweet mustard. And of course beer! An autumnal lunch isn’t complete without a few pints to warm the soul, and there are four different Oktoberfest favorites on tap. O.K., we’re no longer bemoaning the changes at 21. Another Radeberger, please.
Bar 21 at the 21 Club, 21 West 52nd Street, 212-582-7200, closed Sundays.
Saturday, October 15
On Your Mark, Get Set—Tweed!
Another thing that makes mid-October just the best? Tweed. Tweed jackets, tweed suits. Tweed skivvies. (O.K., that might be a tweed too far.) Of course, Ralph Lauren’s got you covered on that front. Doff your light summer coats and grab the fall weights for the Rugby New York Tweed Run, a bike race that’s more about style than speed. Things get started in the West Village this Saturday at noon, and you can take your wheels all the way to Brooklyn, where there will be a soirée awaiting you as you pedal up. Also, there’s a tea break somewhere in there. If you feel insufficiently appareled for the event, Ralph Lauren will be selling knitwear by the barrel, from scarves to mittens to sweaters. Or, if you want to keep warm the old fashioned way, they are selling flasks, too. Hey, you can’t partake in an autumn tweed bike outing without a buzz—and a tam o’ shanter—on!
Rugby Ralph Lauren Tweed Run, the West Village, 12 p.m.; more info at www.rugby.com/tweedrun/
Sunday, October 16
Grapes of Wrath
It seems like it just started, but like all good things, the New York Film Festival must come to an end. What began with Roman Polanski’s Carnage will wrap up with The Descendants, the first film from director Alexander Payne since Sideways. There’s a gala too, and so we can help but ask: will a certain type of red wine be served? (If you don’t know what we’re talking about, here’s a hint. “If anyone orders merlot, I’m leaving,” Paul Giamatti’s character, Miles, says in Sideways. “I am not drinking any fucking merlot!”) No word on whether Mr. Giamatti—who appears in this fall’s The Ides of March, a potential Descendants Oscar rival—will be at the party, but spies should watch the labels of the bottles tipped into glasses, lest anyone wants to be called a traitor. Though it would be a somewhat egregious if guests undertook an exodus over a little merlot, we think.
The New York Festival Premiere of The Descendants and closing gala, Alice Tully Hall, 1941 Broadway, 9 p.m.; sold out.
Monday, October 17
Nude Descending a Sotheby’s Staircase
Things are getting risqué tonight at the auction world’s über-house. It’s the 20th-annual Take Home a Nude auction, where men and woman can bid on the chance to leave the gala with a painting of someone going au naturel. The heavy hitters in attendance will include Larry Gagosian, Chanel CEO Maureen Chiquet, Andre Balazs, Bob Colacello, Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber and the newly single Blake Lively. Perhaps she’ll bring along rumored flame Ryan Reynolds? He’s a well-respected art collector, right? I mean, we have no idea. Regardless of whom Blake brings, the New York Academy of Art will honor critic John Richardson and British portrait master Jenny Saville. Congrats, guys!
Twentieth-annual Take Home a Nude® Benefit Art Auction and Dinner to Honor John Richardson and Jenny Saville, Sotheby’s, 1334 York Avenue; silent auction and cocktails, 6 p.m., live auction, 8 p.m., dinner, 9 p.m.; individual tickets available from $175 to $1,000 by calling 212 842-5971 or emailing email@example.com.
In 1867, Tsar Alexander II was not exactly the most popular guy in Russia—he was so unpopular, in fact, that he was worried someone would kill him by putting a bomb in a bottle of Champagne at his Three Emperors Dinner. The solution? A new vessel was created with “crystal” clear glass, unlike the dark green bottles that would obscure any TNT. Thus, Cristal was born. To celebrate the 135th anniversary of this happy consequence of potential political assassination, Cristal parent-company Louis Roederer is hosting a salon in a mansion on Park Avenue, where the legendary Champagne maker will let the stuff spill into the flutes of enlightened guests. Managing director Frederic Rouzaud will be on hand to officiate the vintages, and even if the conversations on Balzac and Zola get cut short, there’s a good chance we’ll walk out of the salon with our spirits leavened.
Champagne Louis Roederer & Frederic Rouzaud host Cristal’s 135th Anniversary Salon, 41 East 72nd Street between Park and Madison avenues), 7 p.m.; invitation only.
Wednesday, October 19
Ace Rocks Out
There are so many people at the Ace Hotel on laptops clacking away that even if you’re there for fun, it can certainly feel like working. Then again, if you had to spend a day out of the office but still needed to hammer out a few projects, the Ace isn’t the worst place to do it: there’s Stumptown coffee, grade-A grub at the Breslin and plenty of attractive people to pretend to be associated with. What if you added four sets of top-notch indie rock, too? Starting at 10:30 today, Seattle radio station KEXP will bring a commendable lineup of acts to the hotel for a day of free music. Things kick off with Zola Jesus, the Russian freak-electro goth princess, and wrap up with those almost forgotten (but still awesome, trust us) guys Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. They go on at 4:30. So throw the lighters in the air, and if your boss asks where you are, well, you’re working from home.
KEXP Radio Live: CMJ broadcasts from the Ace lobby, the Ace Hotel, 20 West 29th Street; Zola Jesus, 10:30 a.m., We Are Augustines, 12:30 p.m., Portugal, the Man, 2:30 p.m., Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, 4:30 p.m.