A SCENT-SORIAL SOIRÉE AT AESOP ION ORCHARD

On Thursday, 16th September 2017, Vulture toasted its twentieth edition and fifth anniversary with our readers at the Aesop store in ION Orchard. With a session led by Managing Editor Clifford Loh, the brand also took the opportunity to debut its upcoming fragrance — Hwyl to our readers before guests mixed and mingled.

Photography by Hoong Wei Long

AN INTIMATE GATHERING IN CELEBRATION OF LOVE AESTHETICS 

Vulture’s nearest and dearest came together for an intimate meet and greet over canapés and champagne with Romeo Pokomasse & Ivania Carpio of Love Aesthetics. Special thanks to our friends at NARS Singapore for having us! Stay tuned to our social media @Vulturemag for more updates on the duo’s collaboration with the magazine’s September 2017 Anniversary Issue

Photography by Hoong Wei Long

WORK IN PROGRESS

 

Ahead of Dover Street Market Singapore’s official opening, we were offered an exclusive look into its making. The highly anticipated store, set in the lush greens of upscale Dempsey Hill, will bring some of the world’s most progressive, coveted brands to the city, placing it on the map alongside its counterparts in Tokyo, London, and New York.

Created by Comme des Garçon’s founder and matriarch, Rei Kawakubo, the first Dover Street Market store in Mayfair, London, was one of the first in the world to not only carry multiple high-fashion brands—Junya Watanabe, J.W. Anderson, Gucci, and Balenciaga, to name a few—under one roof, but also place them alongside then-emerging labels, such as Craig Green, Gosha Rubchinsky, Edward Meadham, and Jacquemus. Dover Street Market marks its 13th anniversary this year, and Vulture, alongside many around the world who have come to love its rule-breaking, irreverent approach to fashion, celebrates and looks forward to many more years to come.

Words by Lesley Chee | Photography by Hoong Wei Long | Art Direction by Clifford Loh

IT MUST BE TIME FOR LUNCH

An innocent question is the quiet burden that rests on an artist’s shoulder. “Who am I?” she asks. Her mind wrestles with the undefined, while her hands cling onto matter. The studio, a central witness, canvasses evidence of self, through ebbs of mental imprints with every brush stroke. Some confident, others wavering with doubt. Anxiety pulls her down as the impression drips with gravity. From the edges of the canvas she observes, from the fringes so to speak, battling proverbial lines of gender, sexuality and purpose. Chaos that ensues is only remedied by rootedness in her feet. There is comfort knowing that the Earth rests beneath. She muses and quips, “art is the guarantee of sanity”.

Featuring: Charles & Keith & COS

Photography by Tania Alineri, Styling by Giulia Meterangelis

CHEF’S TABLE

At the core of each country’s signature dish is a medley of must have ingredients that have come to shape a nation’s cuisine. In the case of Thailand, evocative aromas of basil, spices and chilli will undeniably come to mind. Picture your favourite Thai dish, and what you recall might be the faint image of the iconic Phad Thai or Som Tum (spicy green papaya salad). A glass of ice cold beer might not be conventionally associated with Thai cuisine but it is undoubtedly a much needed respite from the spice and heat that Thai flavours incite.

Returning for a 3rd time, Thai brewed Chang beer presents a travelling campaign around Thai food. Conceived with a multi-sensorial approach, the campaign showcases authentic Thai experiences in modern, unexpected ways. For 2017, the idea of memories became a guiding concept for the sensory campaign and we got to experience a sensory treat of our own at Bangkok based restaurant, Bo.lan.

Whilst it is easy to conflate their position in global Thai gastronomy with the increasing popularity of Bangkok as a holiday destination, there is something particularly ‘Thai’ about the restaurant’s founders and their approach. Their story is one of sustainable farming, rejection of marco supply chains and the uncompromising commitment to retaining authenticity in their cuisine. The restaurant eschews the Michelin standard of white table clothes and starched service for a more informal setting. The interiors are clad with beautiful untreated wood and the warm service you can expect from the sunny capital.

Created by Thai-born chef Duangporn Songvisava (Bo) and Australian-born Dylan Jones (Lan), Bo.lan was born when the two first met in London’s Nahm, helmed by award winning Australian chef David Thompson. “David actually inspired me a lot with his philosophy and patience with Thai food. I see Thailand as my playground because all the ingredients I want to work with are back here. So, it was really easy for me to leave London but it wasn’t easy for him. I asked him to join me but he always said I manipulated him to move here.” Chef Bo comments.

Fast forward to the present, the restaurant features authentic Thai style cooking with a modern touch. According to Chef Dylan, “the only thing that we modify for the international audience is the plate ware and the presentation. We are really conservative. It is a different story if you compare other people and their Thai foods with ours. We make sure that the roots of a particular dish are still there, the profile is still there. We want to make it lighter or heavier sometimes, or we add an ingredient that you wouldn’t find in a traditional recipe. Sometimes we do add things, but only to elevate a dish itself.”

While some may question the authenticity of the cuisine that Bo.lan offers, the restaurant is emphatically not fusion in nature as Chef Dylan eagerly clarifies. “with Bo.lan we try to bring more attention to Thai food heritage and present it in a more contemporary manner. We believe that we should do everything from scratch and make everything fresh every day.” It is this very commitment to quality and freshness that lends their style of Thai cuisine its personality. In the words of Chef Bo “If you do Thai food correctly, everything is just vibrant and fresh. You take ingredients, that by themselves aren’t exactly delicious but mix them together and it just creates something of a new level. Compared to western food, you have a dish that is salty. With Thai food, it’s salty, sweet, sour, spicy, bitter and astringent all at the same time while still maintaining its harmonious balance.”

Beyond what’s on the plate, the couple is intent on creating a more progressive approach to culinary by prompting awareness of sustainable farming and the origins of food sources. “We believe that food is one of the things that bring people together so it is important to be mindful and considerate of where our food comes from, whether it’s sustainable or organic, good practice and if it is ethical.” While the duo recognises that locally sourced, organically grown food might be far reaching for the majority of Thailand’s population, they are taking their first steps to change the way people see food. “From the first year, where we try to talk about sustainable sources from where we get our food. None of them understand what we had to say, but these days they are getting it more and they start asking questions as to where the food comes from when they go out to buy them. Is it chemical free? The society has a better understanding of what they consume and they make better choices when it comes to food.”

To experience all that Chef Bo & Dylan has curated for Chang’s Sensory Trails, visit The Promontory at Marina Bay on 7th and 8th July 2017 from 4-1030pm and expect unique renditions of Thai classics, live band performances and interactive art exhibitions.

 Words & Photography by Clifford Loh