Fab Fondue and Brazen Burlesque
By Michael Musto
Fondue is that messy but amusing phenomenon that had ’70s trendsters gleefully dipping bread into vats of melted cheese and chocolate. And now it’s back even bigger than lava lamps! A cozy East Village restaurant called The Bourgeois Pig features it on the menu, and names from Madonna to Anderson Cooper have come by for drippy tastings. Making this Pig even more fascinating, the space used to be Richie Rich’s apartment, and when the designer came by not long ago, he ran into the kitchen and exclaimed, “This was my bedroom!”
BonBon is basically my living room, especially since the Tuesday-night bash hosts dinners—such as one for fashion maven Patrick McDonald from Bravo’s Launch My Line. But Patrick told me he’s not happy with his assigned design partner on the show. “When I got to know him,” he said, “a Cher song came to mind: ‘Gypsies, Tramps & Thieves.’” And the beat goes on.
Launching his own line of inspired lunacy, maverick director John Waters did a one-man show at B.B. King Blues Club & Grill, where he chatted about his interesting career twists. The “sultan of bad taste” said he has written the treatment for a Hairspray sequel, which would involve Edna losing weight and Tracy being manipulated by a Phil Spector-type producer, all as the British invasion changes the Baltimore landscape. And that’s just in the first hour.
Hair spray and high spirits filled the stage at the Paper Nightlife Awards at M2, where honors went to The Standard hotel, Santos Party House and DJs Andrew Andrew, among a slew of other clubs and clubbies who make leaving the house fun. The night’s star performers, the Ting Tings, had to cancel, but the Drums stepped in and did well enough to make the night worthy of another Paper award.
Nominated for all kinds of honors, Up in the Air’s Anna Kendrick seems to have remained refreshingly earthbound. “Has becoming a film star dramatically changed your life?” I asked her at a glitzy party at Rouge Tomate. “Only when I come to things like this,” Kendrick said, surveying the environs. “But I go home and all my friends still treat me like an asshole and I’m back to being a nobody.” Really? Get new friends!
I certainly need new ones ever since the fourth incarnation of the club Mr. Black closed (though they’re bravely promising a fifth one). But The Slipper—the long-running Lower East Side haven for neoburlesque—shows no signs of weakening. On Monday nights, the snazzy cabaret hosts a revue with stripping women and shlubby male comics, and from the response, you’d never guess the burly-que revival has been going on for more than a decade. That’s way longer than the fondue revival!
TOP IMAGE: Anna Kendrick. BOTTOM IMAGE: Andrew Andrew
photographs by PHOTOGRAPHS BY MICHAEL PLUNKETT/PATRICKMCMULLAN.COM (ANDREW ANDREW); ANDREAS BRANCH/PATRICKMCMULLAN.COM (KENDRICK)