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NYC chefs use their noodles when it comes to creative pastas

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double-ravioli (half cheese, half rabbit porcini, wholly incredible), Osteria Morini

Spaghetti, manicotti, those pastas are fine but Columbus didn’t sail through sunshine, wind and rain to come to America to have more of the same-old. In that spirit, we explored the City in search of shapes and creations not usually seen, deliberately sticking Italian to honor the man of the hour. We discovered Bronx Brewery Spent Grain Radiators and Red Hook Winery Sauvignon Blanc Reginetti made by year-old Sfoglini, a pasta company in Williamsburg that supplies a handful of restaurants and sells retail too ( for locations).

Decorative shapes are gorgeous but they also serve a greater purpose. “Every shape can help enhance a dish so that all the ingredients flow together and make each bite perfect,” says co-owner Sfoglini co-owner Scott Ketchum.

Then there are the stuffed. “Fresh, filled pasta is a treasure,” says Antonella Rana, who moved from Italy to NYC two years ago to open Giovanni Rana Pastificio & Cucina where they make 550-pounds of pasta every day. “Here we can do more and more innovation.” She’s talking the likes of eggplant-parm-filled ravioli (it’s amazing). Her countrymen are slower to accept change to tradition. “There, it’s a revolution.”

Pasta revolution? Bring in on!

Read complete story (originally written for Columbus Day, moved to Marathon) on NYC chefs use their noodles when it comes to creative pastas

What's Happening with Design Software

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Starry Street, courtesy of 5+design

Nearly a century ago – 1919 – the Bauhaus was founded by architect Walter Gropius to offer education in art and crafts, technology, and design. That multidisciplinary approach that is as relevant as ever today, embraced by architects and designers at firms of all sizes.

Embraced, and required. We’re talking design technology – AutoCAD, Autodesk 3dsMax, BIMLink, Google SketchUp, Revit, Rhino, Trelligence Affinity, etc. - and all the plug-ins and personalization you need.

“Nothing can replace a good idea,” says Craig Kolstad, Dallas-based Design Director for Gensler, “but the software available today has become increasingly intuitive and has unleashed the potential of the designer to express and achieve those ideas, whether sitting in a large office or working at their kitchen table. [Software has] fundamentally changed the way that we design as a profession.”

The newest professionals, recently graduated, arrive with the know-how, or at least the competency to know-how, and to teach their elders as required (meanwhile, elders can teach newbies why and when to use their software skills).

Continue reading "What's Happening with Design Software" »