Art of Style Invite Large Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish EveningArt of Style was a big success, a ton of fun, and a chance for all of artist Samara Shuter’s DC fans to meet her in person.  The Huxley, our venue for the evening, was fantastically cool and made us all feel right at home.

The event and its omnipresent hashtag #ArtOfStyleDC, received great media coverage, including The Washington Post, Washingtonian Magazine, Friend of a Friend, Greg’s List, and numerous fashion and lifestyle bloggers.  Thanks to everyone for the support.

We could not be happier with the outcome and already the question is being thrown at us, “We need more; when’s the next one?”

We’re already working on that.

With close to 200 guests in attendance, we had a full room, a lot of conversation, and lots of eyeballs on our in-house brands.  The bar was busy, but so were the tables for Bull + Moosestubble & ‘stache, Read Wall, and the Nice Laundry crew who were roaming through the crowd.

Personally, OTC had the chance to meet many readers, chat with great industry folks, and of course hang out with Sam Shuter, our guest of honor.  With all that out of the way, let’s get down to the photos!  If you were there, maybe you’re here.  And, if you missed The Art of Style, here’s what you missed.

If we missed mentioning you in a photo, no worries.  Just leave a comment and we’ll make sure you are recognized, or email us directly at otc (at) oofthecuffdc (dot) com.

20140516 Art of Style TH VP164 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP092 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP087 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP060 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP064 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP081 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP074 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP094 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP114 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP044 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP051 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP039 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP023 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP005 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP063 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP108 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP083 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP036 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP120 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP069 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP096 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP004 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP059 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP014 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

2014 05 16 18.06.55 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

2014 05 16 18.07.13 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP021 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP019 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP027 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP105 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP128 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP123 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

2014 05 16 16.31.23 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP109 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP117 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

2014 05 16 19.31.50 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP056 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

20140516 Art of Style TH VP132 Art of Style Event Recap: A Huge Success and Stylish Evening

 

Jose Cuervo Drink OTC x Jose Cuervo: Our Summer Drink, The Tabard Cocktail

Summer cocktails are many, varied, refreshing, and always looked forward to.  When Jose Cuervo approached us and asked that we tell you about a favorite OTC summer cocktail that included, of course, tequila, it was excellent timing.

First, what cocktail worth its salt, so to speak, doesn’t contain tequila?  Second, we had recently rediscovered a favorite drink made famous by a famous D.C. institution, the Hotel Tabard Inn.

Jose Cuervo Tradicional 750ml 214x300 OTC x Jose Cuervo: Our Summer Drink, The Tabard CocktailThe Tabard Cocktail is warmer and cozier than most other “summer” cocktails, but it fits perfectly the context of how this unique concoction plays into our day.  As prepared by OTC, the Tabard Cocktail is built on the smooth and subtle complexity of Jose Cuervo’s 100% blue agave Tradicional Reposado tequila and the deep honey-infused scotch whiskey tones of Drambuie.

It’s perfect for sitting back in your leather club chair, or gathering with friends at the end of the week, and slowing down a bit to appreciate life.  It’s a sipping cocktail and a thoughtful drink.

Created by Chantal Tseng, the Hotel Tabard Inn’s head mixologist, the Tabard Cocktail feels like a throwback to the age of classic cocktails like the Sidecar or the Manhattan.  Tseng, a certified sommelier and founding member of the D.C. Craft Bartenders Guild, says she is inspired by seasonal ingredients from the kitchen and garden as well as old cocktail books and forgotten recipes.

The Tabard Cocktail

1 1/2 oz. Jose Cuervo Tradicional Reposado Tequila
1/2 oz. Amontillado sherry
1/2 oz. Drambuie
Dash of orange bitters
Ice cubes
Orange Peel
Fresh Thyme Sprig

You will need a mixing glass and strainer or a shaker with a straining top.  The drink is served in a cocktail glass.

Add the ice cubes into the mixing glass and stir the tequila, sherry, Drambuie, and bitters.  Strain into a cocktail glass. Twist orange peel over the drink to release its oils, float it on top, then top with a sprig of fresh thyme.

To help tell the story of Jose Cuervo’s “History in a Bottle” campaign, watch this great tongue-in-cheek take on the company’s impact on some of history’s most iconic moments from the last 219 years.

For example, did you know Jose Cuervo invented the Margarita (yet another timeless cocktail) and even inspired beach volleyball?  Are either of those claims true? Eh, who knows – sit back and have another sip.

Thanks to Jose Cuervo for sponsoring this post.

 OTC x Jose Cuervo: Our Summer Drink, The Tabard Cocktail

 

First Take on Summer Style

OTC Spring 2014 2 First Take on Summer Style

What often works best for men’s warm weather fashion is simplicity and classic style.  Basics can make almost any guy look and feel that much more polished, put together, and comfortable. Think of it as updated Ivy League or modern preppy without all the gimmicky noise.

Summer style – even though it’s technically Spring, it sure has felt like July recently – does not have to mean old shorts, a tee shirt, and worn out sneakers.  While all those things all have their place, looking nice when it is hot is actually pretty simple.

Here we have an easy, go-to look that is both straight-forward and sharp, in a casual and comfortable way.  While polished, this outfit is neither too dressy nor overly casual.  Instead, it strikes a nice balance between formal and informal.  It’s the kind of look that works very well when meeting friends for drinks, heading out to a nice brunch or dinner, or just Friday at the office.

To add some easy polish to this look, just toss on a blue blazer or lightweight sweater and swap out the driving loafers for cordovan slip-ins.

The components of this functionally classic ensemble are basics that every guy’s wardrobe should contain.

The checked button down shirt is from Richmond, VA, maker, Ledbury.  It is actually a super lightweight linen/cotton blend that is fantastic in warm weather.  The shirt shown here is a short run from 2013 and may not currently be available.  We are big fans of Ledbury and their decidedly American take on British shirtmaking.  The construction is excellent and their fabric selections are always impressive.  Regardless of where you get yours, a few blue, purple, and red checked button downs are invaluable to your wardrobe.

OTC Spring 2014 3 300x225 First Take on Summer StyleSeveral pair of well-fitting and properly hemmed khakis should also be a core staple of any guy’s closet.  These slim fit Daltons from Jack Donnelly are a great option.  This small brand has created an updated version of the classic tailored khaki.  That does not mean “dress pant,” although they do iron up quite nicely.  They are light, comfortable, nicely finished, and can handle almost any scenario short of needing a suit.  These pants have the construction and detail of dressier trousers, but the fit and feel of classic wear-whenever khakis.  And, they are sourced and handmade in America.

A great pair of driving loafers can serve you well all day long.  While Tod’s iconic Gomminos may have created the driving moccasin/loafer category, we also love these Austen Heller Kingston loafers.  OTC has written about this brand before and their new collection only reinforces our appreciation of their comfortable, fun, and easy to wear footwear.  Opt for classic brown if you want to keep it low key, or try out some of the more adventurous color combinations.

Warm weather dressing is also the time to have some fun with your accessories.  Belts from Tucker Blair are a great way to impart some personality and Ivy League needlepoint into you look.  Other than that, strive to pare down and use more color as the day only get warmer from here.

Ledbury Purple Parker BD First Take on Summer Style

Tucker Blair Nantucket Needlepoint Belt First Take on Summer Style

Jack Donnelly Dalton Pant 640x1024 First Take on Summer Style

Austen Heller Kingstons First Take on Summer Style

 

History in a Bottle? Fun With Tequila

While it won’t hold up in history class, this new commercial / web video from the folks at Jose Cuervo Tradicional make timelines, and the history of this mixologist’s staple,  a bit more fun.

OTC is partnering with the iconic maker of world class tequila to bring you our favorite cocktail. Stay tuned for that upcoming article; as you might expect, it has a decidedly urbane bent to it.  So, while we work away in our stylishly secret private lounge, imbibe in this tongue-in-cheek take on some of history’s most iconic moments from the last 219 years.

 History in a Bottle? Fun With Tequila

 

Go Take A (Day) Hike

DSC 0614 Go Take A (Day) Hike

Now that the endless winter weather that has gripped much of the Northern hemisphere appears finally to be receding, it’s time to head outside for some much needed sunlight and fresh air.  One of the great pleasures of outdoor activities, apart from actually being active, is acquiring new equipment and gear designed for your back-to-nature inspired endeavors.

Purpose-built bags, clothing, and accessories help to orient your thinking and get you in the mood for day hikes, longer runs, or just an urban adventure to the cool section of town.

We have had the pleasure of recently checking out a few pieces from three great performance-driven brands; Granite Gear, Vasque, and Timex.  While they do possess a certain color-coordinated outdoor performance look, it was pure – if inspired – coincidence.  And, although each has great technical eye appeal, what ultimately matters is how the products perform.

DSC 0607 Go Take A (Day) HikeWe have actually been testing out the Timex Expedition Shock Chrono Alarm ($58) for about two months and find it to be a fantastic timepiece for everyday informal and active wear, be it working out, running, hiking, or any other activity where the possibility of deliberate or accidental watch abuse exists.

The moderately-sized watch is very lightweight but also sturdy and extremely comfortable on the wrist.  Its soft rubber strap is flexible, unlike the G-Shock’s, and gently hugs your wrist, keeping the watch in place without bulk.  A pleasingly functional case, clear and easy-to-read negative display, and one-touch Indiglo illumination, all make this a true favorite.

The Granite Gear Athabasca 24 day pack ($129.95) is another item that combines technical capability with functionally cool style.  First and foremost, this company makes gear for use in the actual great outdoors.

Athabasca 24 Go Take A (Day) HikeEvery strap, tab, zipper, pocket, and loop on this bag is there for a reason and built to withstand the abuse of serious backwoods tracking.  At the same time, their days packs are infused with features that work in a more urban, less mountainous environment.

The sturdy hip belt, perfect for supporting a fully loaded back for an afternoon on the trail, is also removable for everyday commuter use.  There is a sleeve designed for a hydration insert that doubles a secure slot for a small laptop, and an easily accessible outer pocket is equipped with key lanyard and assorted pockets.

A good pair of sturdy shoes is vital to a comfortable and safe trek, whether on a trail or down the block.  These Vasque Grand Traverse kicks ($129.95) are a nice hybrid multi-sport shoe designed to handle true back country trails and daily errands with ease.  It’s the performance of a hiking boot wrapped in the comfort of an athletic shoe.

The dual-density EVA footbed and molded EVA midsole provide superior support over rough terrain while the Vibram® Ibex sole gives you stability and grip, even on wet pavement.  It’s even a comfortable choice for going sockless and walking the dog on a warm evening – we’ve tried it.

DSC 0605 Go Take A (Day) Hike

DSC 0611 Go Take A (Day) Hike

Watch pack detail Go Take A (Day) Hike