The Edition Issue#1

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The Beginning of a Bold New Era.

Just over 150 years ago, WM Astley & Company opened its bespoke pipe divan on London’s Jermyn Street. It was the beginning of a rich history for the British luxury brand, which sold world-class tobacco pipes to a highly-affluent, highlyinfluential clientele.

Today, we have re-forged that heritage into Astleys, a contemporary and masculine luxury cannabis vape brand for today’s sophisticated consumer. Yes, at the core of things, we’re a male-centric cannabis vape brand, and have created Astleys to deliver a seamless, stylish cannabis vaping experience to consumers looking to define their lifestyle choices with a luxury heritage brand. In addition, Astleys will be rolling out a curated collection of masculine small and medium leather goods, CBD and non-CBD wellness products essential to every gentleman’s daily grooming regime, and, in time, experience-based retail destinations that will help us to deliver Astleys’ vision in North America and beyond.

However, Astleys is so much more than just a men’s lifestyle brand, as you’ll see as you weave your way through this issue’s features, some of which are related to Astleys, and some of which are simply in keeping with our philosophies. Astleys is about fraternity, about embracing today’s contemporary gentleman, about shared knowledge and experience, about being the best version of yourself you can be, and about setting a higher benchmark for men everywhere. The Edition, and its online sibling The Journal, are guides on that journey; designed to help educate, inspire and ultimately define modern men, while empowering them through inspired content, The Edition tells the story of Astleys, which in turn, has told a story of sophistication, antiquity and timeliness since those first years on Jermyn Street.

Welcome to Astleys.


Nick Walton


Don Riosa

CHIEF SUB EDITOR Philippa Walton


The Edition is owned and published by Astleys of London (Hong Kong) Limited, 1801-1802 LKF 29, 29 Wyndham Street, Central, Hong Kong.


Joseph Batchelor




Henry Kirby

The Edition is produced by boutique custom publishing agency Artemis Communications Ltd

8C Golden Sun Centre, 59-67 Bonham Strand West, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong

T: +85297369434

This publication may not be produced or transmitted in any form or by any means, in whole or part, without the express prior written permission of the publisher. All information contained in this publication is from a reliable source. The publisher assumes no responsibility to any party for the content, including any errors or omissions therein. Views of contributors and advertisers do not necessarily reflect the policies of Artemis Communications Ltd or Astleys of London (Hong Kong) Limited.

10 The Journal Knowledge is Power 12 Timekeeping Creative Chronology 11 Essential Events Where You Need to Be & When 13 Culture Creature New Museums & Exhibitions 15 Urban Diggs Nouveau Nashville 22 Astleys Man Donald Glover is Renaissance Man of the Year 16 Astleys Reborn An Iconic British Luxury Brand, Back from the Ashes 28 Society Is SLR Set to Become the Netflix of VR Porn? 30 Discussion Change Through Film 34 Disruptor The Devastatingly Beautiful Victoria Loke Contents
44 Style Form Follows Comfort 78 The Last Word A Narc Prosecutor’s Journey into the Global Cannabis Industry. 46 Office Politics The Death of Creative Advertising 58 Kit Out Arctic Chic 60 The Cook The Constant Cajun 66 Libation Distillation Nation 62 Gastronomy Weed Cuisine 70 Collectables The Robusto: A Modern Classic 72 Wellness CBD: Nature’s Boon or Boondoggle? 74 Auto Porsche’s New Pocket Rocket 77 Tome City of Change Contents 50 Travel Antarctica by Superyacht


Born and raised in Hong Kong, Divia Harilela has worked in the lifestyle and fashion media for over 17 years. Most recently she served as the fashion editor for Hong Kong's leading English language newspaper, The South China Morning Post, where she remains a contributing editor. She also contributes to a range of high-profile publications and websites including Business of Fashion, Vogue China, Howtospendit. com and Departures among many others. She is also editor and founder of The D’Vine (, Asia’s leading luxury and fashion website.

Charles Feldmann is an experienced international cannabis attorney who has focused his practice on assisting his marijuana and hemp business clients around the globe in creating and operating 100 percent compliant operations. He uses his past experience as a Marine Corps federal prosecutor, DEA Drug Task Force Commander and Colorado state narcotics prosecutor to assist his clients in establishing strict regulatory compliance protocols at both the state, federal and international levels.

Samuel Spurr loves sharing his passion for premium cigars and doesn’t require much arm-twisting to light a cigar and enjoy a splash of rum all in the name of work. He’s written for Cigar Journal for over a decade and has also been published in a variety of other international lifestyle magazines. As Asia-Pacific’s preeminent cigar writer, Samuel is well connected with the industry’s movers and shakers, frequently visiting cigar hot spots in Asia and the Americas.

Tony Logan started his writing career as a fashion journalist in 2008 writing for several men’s fashion blogs such as Man of Many, Vouch Mag and Primary Mag. This experience created an opportunity to become a fashion contributor and have his own style column in The Stndrd. Besides writing, Tony is also the founder and creative director of Tony Thrifts, his vintage inspired brand which specializes in product design and personal styling services. When he’s not writing or styling, he can be found in local thrifts shops or stealing wifi from small cafes.

David Chapman is a writer based in Great Britain. He writes for a number of the UK's leading newspapers and magazines, specializing in modern technology, food and culture.

As a professional editor, writer and photographer, Cindy-Lou Dale creates non-fiction for numerous publications around the world. Her specialist genres include high-end travel, luxury motoring and affluent lifestyles.

Ariana DiValentino is a writer and filmmaker based in Brooklyn. In this issue she delves behind New York’s craft distilling renaissance.

Amy Nelmes Bissett is an internationally published digital nomad mainly found exploring the Southern Hemisphere. In this issue of The Edition she examines the death of the Mad Men-era of the advertising industry and how the scene is evolving.

Jo Stewart is a Melbournebased author, features writer and editor. She has documented expeditions to Antarctica and the Simpson Desert, and has contributed travel, food, pop culture and human-interest stories to more than 40 publications including Monocle, International Traveller, Time Out, Mindfood and Lonely Planet.

Tom Bentley is a business writer and fiction writer, editor, and essayist. He’s had hundreds of freelance pieces published— ranging from first-person essays to travel pieces to more journalistic subjects—in newspapers, magazines, and online. His selfpublished book on finding and cultivating your writer’s voice, Think Like a Writer: How to Write the Stories You See was published in June of 2015.

she’s not writing, you can find her eating her way around town, attempting to learn new languages, or listening to weird live music.

new boutique hotels redefining downtown Nashville.

Avid traveler and foodie Grace Brewer recently left Britain for the exoticism of Hong Kong, where she enjoys exploring the city’s vibrant wet markets and hidden beaches. In this issue she discovers three Phoebe Taylor is from the UK and is currently based between Korea and the Philippines. She writes about travel, arts and culture, and the environment. When

Essential Insights

Welcome to The Journal, Astleys’ online lifestyle portal, a showcase of inspirational and educational content that helps define today’s modern man, from insightful interviews and thematic travel features to how to guides to life’s most important rituals. Below are some of the season’s most popular reads.

Fashion Forward Flicks

We check out the big screen triumphs that have helped define men’s fashion.

How to Buy Your Own Formula One Car

British dealers are selling the moneyspinning leftovers from the world’s greatest motor racing series.

Hone Your Dinner Party Etiquette

10 Classic

Tomes for Modern Men

The Three Commandments of First Dates

If you are not going to commit to the three commandments you might as well not go on a date.

y Ariadna Peretz

If one of your New Year resolutions was to read more, we have a few suggestions to get you started.

it to Me Your
education into Japan’s timeless tipple begins now.
If you want to be the host with the most, or even a guest to remember, there are a few fundamentals to adhere to.

Sundance Film Festival

One of the world’s most important independent film festivals, Sundance draws the creative set from across the globe to Salt Lake City and Park City each winter. With 12 episodic works, 73 short films from 33 countries (chosen from 9,443 submissions), and four special events, this year’s festival packs a punch.

With its origins as an indie film festival, South by Southwest exhibits a variety of films, media, and music all over Austin each spring. With film viewings and music performances set against workshops and seminars from leaders in the tech, film, music, media, and business worlds, the event is a great excuse to head for Texas’ most unique city.

If you are one of those few kids whose parents never took them on a road trip to see the Grand Canyon, now is your chance. This worldfamous UNESCO-listed site will celebrate its 100th anniversary as a national park this February, with a host of events planned.

The world’s largest (and sexiest) street party, the Rio Carnival is a festival held before Lent every year and welcomes over two million people per day to Brazil’s commercial capital. The highlight of the week-long festivities is the procession of samba schools, with their spectacular dancers dressed in striking costumes and followed by ranks of eye-catching floats.

Famed for its stunning vintage yachts and champagne-soaked parties, the annual Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta combines Old World luxury with the laid-back ambiance of the Caribbean. As popular with power brokers as it is with sailors, the event is steeped in tradition but guarantees an exhilarating few days in the islands.

Packed with themed tasting events, wine workshops and lavish gala events, the annual Vancouver International Wine Festival welcomes 160 wineries and 50 participating restaurants to 54 events at 25 venues, making it one of North America’s most important food and wine showcases.

January 24 – February 3, 2019 Park City, Utah Rio Carnival March 1-9, 2019 Rio de Janerio, Brazil South by Southwest March 8-17, 2019 Austin, Texas Vancouver International Wine Festival February 23 – March 3, 2019 Vancouver, Canada Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta 2019 April 17-23, 2019 Antigua, Caribbean Grand Canyon Centennial February 26, 2019 Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

Creative Chronology

Bold and bodacious and yet infinitely-elegant, each of these new timepieces pays tribute to the watchmaker’s art.

Franck Muller adds to its Vanguard collection with the arrival of the Vanguard S6 Yachting with skeletonized dial. Nestled within an 18K rose gold Cintrée Curvex case, beneath perfectly curved glass, intertwined bridges in oceanic blue evoke images of calming sea waves, while compass markers on the inner flange ring and the constantly sweeping wind rose at 6 o’clock takes the wearer on a great voyage of discovery. The NATO strap in nylon and rubber perfectly accentuates this refreshing and eyecatching nautical addition, which comes equipped with a manualwinding mechanical movement with a seven-day power reserve.

Inspired by the aerodynamic profiles of mid-century automotive and aviation design, the captivating Horological Machine N°9 ‘Flow’ by MB & F is presented in a highly-complex titanium case in alternating polished and satin finishes that’s reminiscent of tiny jet engines, and which encloses an equally complex manual-winding movement. Independent twin balance wheels beat at a leisurely 18,000bph on each flank, visible under elongated sapphire crystal domes, while a third on the central body reveals a planetary differential that averages the output of both balance wheels to provide one stable reading. Sitting perpendicular to the movement is a dial with hands driven by conical gears that ensure precise engagement. Presented with a hand-stitched brown calf leather strap, The Flow is limited to 33 pieces across two styles and presented with a hand-stitched brown calf leather strap.

Inspired by Richard Orlinski’s first Born Wild Crocodile sculpture, the new Classic Fusion Chronograph Orlinski by Hublot, the latest collaboration with the world’s bestselling contemporary artist, is presented in the brand’s patented red ceramic. Using a unique material created during a highly-specialized four-year R&D project that tackled the challenge of creating superhard ceramic without burning its pigments, the Classic Fusion Chronograph Orlinski boasts the sharp three-dimensional sculpted lines and polished finish that are the artist's trademark. Limited to 200 pieces, this eye-catching timepiece features a 45mm case, and a sapphire case that reveals the HUB1155 self-winding skeleton chronograph movement within.


Culture Creatures

Just for a laugh, make a beeline for the new National Comedy Center in Jamestown, New York. The first non-profit cultural institution dedicated to the art of comedy, the 3437sqm centre tells the story of comedy from its origins through to the present, with more than 50 immersive, interactive exhibits and rare comedy artifacts.

Who doesn’t like interactive museum exhibitions? At the new Museum of Contemporary Art Toronto, Andreas Angelidakis’s DEMOS – A Reconstruction is an installation of 74 foam modules that visitors of all ages can move and rearrange. While soft and lightweight, the modules explore powerful ideas around both architectural and colonial legacies as well as our relationship with computer coding and future technologies.

Combine your love of classic horror flicks with a trip to the gallery at the Aspen Art Museum, where Zombies: Pay Attention, a collection featuring works by Huma Bhabha, Will Boone, Elizabeth Jaeger, Rashid Johnson, Bruce Nauman, Sigmar Polke, Ed Ruscha, Tom Sachs, Tracey Snelling, and Piotr Uklański, examines the space between the living and the dead and the notion of the “living dead” within contemporary culture.

The Royal Alberta Museum has opened in its new downtown Edmonton location, the fruition of years of construction and curation. Continuing the museum’s long-standing links with mammoths, two bronze sculptures of the ancient beasts greet museum goers in the venue’s main lobby, with exhibitions featuring 5,300 objects (from a total collection of 2.4 million) across 38,920sqft of exhibition space dedicated to natural history, human history and even entomology.

Dedicated to contemporary art, architecture and landscapes, Glenstone Museum recently reopened in Potomac, Maryland, outside Washington D.C. in a new venue by Thomas Phifer and Partners. New additions include a 62,178sqft museum building called The Pavilions, and 130-acres of rolling meadows and woodlands by Adam Greenspan and Peter Walker of PWP, which join the original Gallery, home to works drawn from its own renowned collection of modern and contemporary art, including two large-scale sculptures by Martin Puryear, and three large-scale canvasses by On Kawara commemorating the Apollo 11 lunar missions.

Ice cream has gone from a sweet snack to a cultural icon with San Francisco’s new Museum of Ice Cream, a permanent fixture that’s capitalized on the popularity of its past pop-ups. The Union Square venue, housed in a neo-classical masterpiece from 1911, the museum boasts a Pop Rocks-themed cave, a Wonka-esque candy garden, and of course plenty of samples from local favourites like Bi-Rite, Salt & Straw and It’s-It.

Kick the New Year off with a touch of culture at some of the newest museums and exhibitions from across North America.

Recreating an Icon

In 1915, at the Raffles Singapore, Hainanese bartender Ngiam Tong Boon created The Singapore Sling, a cocktail that was heady enough to keep the colonial institutions on their Long Bar stools, but tropical enough to capture a sense of place. In time for the hotel’s reopening in 2019, the signature libation has been recreated for new generations of cocktail aficionados. The Long Bar’s new mixology team was charged with recreating but not changing the original elixir and the result is both modern and a homage to the classic; Widges Gin was selected for its juniperforward profile and touches of cardamom and sweet orange. ‘Singapore Sling’ Grenadine, produced by acclaimed bartender Jason Crawley, delivers the original color with real pomegranates and cane sugar, while Italian Luxardo Cherry Sangue Morlacco, a traditional, all-natural cherry liqueur, brings a touch of sweetness. A drier, more modern flavor is achieved with Ferrand Dry curaçao, made with bitter oranges and Cognac, while the spices of Asia are delivered by Scrappy’s ‘Spice Plantation’ Bitters, the creation of which was inspired by the spice plantations of Old Singapore.

Noise No More

Whether you’re flying long-haul or simply trying to shut out the sounds of a city that doesn’t want to sleep, the new noise-masking Sleepbuds from Bose promise to keep the world at bay. These tiny, wireless earbuds combine an ultra-comfortable design with soothing, meditative sounds to block, cover, and replace the most common noises that interfere with sleep. The smallest product by Bose and the first to use ‘sleep masking’ technology, the Sleepbuds come pre-loaded with 10 ‘sleeptracks’ that mirror the frequencies of snoring, neighbors, dogs, traffic, and more – hiding them beneath a layer of relaxing audio for up to 16 hours.

Full Metal Luggage

Ensure you – and your belongings – get to where you’re headed this holiday season with the new 19 Degree Gunmetal from Tumi. Striking and made to handle the ordeals of today’s busy airports, this carry-on is ideal for weekend escapes and business trips, and features two mesh zip pockets, tie-down straps on both compartments, TSA integrated locks, a three-stage telescoping handle system, and a rugged metallic exterior that carries its scars with pride. The case even comes with a series of vintageinspired stickers to allow you to add a touch of personalization to your case.

Pint-sized Performance

Capture holiday memories with the new Leica D-Lux 7, the company’s newest compact camera, which boasts a fast Leica 10.9-34mm f/1.7–2.8 zoom lens, a 17MP four-thirds sensor, a touchscreen display, Bluetooth connectivity and a USB charging capability. An ideal everyday companion, the D-Lux 7 features the flexibility of manual settings, captures video in 4K at 30fps, and pairs with the Leica FOTOS App for remote control and fast wireless transfers.

Ghost in a Bottle

The second edition in a new series of whiskies made, in part, from spirit produced in now closed distilleries, Johnnie Walker Blue Label Ghost and Rare Port Ellen captures the essence of one of Islay’s most sought after single malts. Sitting low on the water’s edge at Kilnaughton Bay, watched over by the foursided Carraig Fhada lighthouse and the occasional ethereal glow of the Northern Lights, the Port Ellen distillery fell silent in the 1980s, but its memory stays alive in this new limited-edition release, for which master blender Jim Beveridge hand-selected seven of the rarest expressions of individual whiskies, of no less than 20 years of age, from the unparalleled Johnnie Walker Blue Label reserves and intricately crafted them to balance the unique character of Port Ellen.


Nouveau Nashville

The Fairlane Hotel

The city’s newest boutique hotel, The Fairlane offers 81 rooms and two penthouse suites decorated in a timeless and classic mid-century style. Housed in a travertine stone 1960s building that was once the city’s Fidelity Federal Savings & Loan headquarters, the hotel retains many of the original elements, including terrazzo floors, wood paneling and brass features. Rooms are complete with floor-toceiling windows, offering beautiful views of the surrounding cityscape, and Art Deco additions, including fully-stocked wet bars in the penthouses. The hotel’s mid-centuryinspired restaurant, Ellington’s Mid Way Bar & Grill, serves classic, all-American fare with old-school flair.


One of a new wave of boutique hotels in the city center, Noelle recently opened in a 99-year-old building that was once home to the Noel Place hotel. The refurbishment restored many of the building’s original details, including soft pink granite walls and geometric Art Deco patterns carved into the wood ceilings. Part of Marriott’s Tribute Portfolio collection of independent hotels, Noelle provides 224 rooms featuring hickory hardwood floors and eraappropriate furnishings. Additional amenities include a complimentary daily ten-minute fast-tracked coffee delivery service; handwoven robes, and the hotel’s own newspaper. Be sure to visit restaurant Makeready Libations & Liberation, an American tavern serving hearty Southern dishes with a seasonal approach.

Holston House

The 88-year-old James Robertson Apartments reopened in late 2017 as Hyatt’s 191 room Holston House hotel. This vintage architectural gem was designed by Mar and Holman in 1929 and boasts ornate Art Deco detailing. The hotel features six suites, including two signature 12th floor Bungalow Suites, as well as a rooftop pool, and some of Nashville’s leading food and beverage offerings, including signature restaurant Tenn, a true American eatery infused with Southern flavor and culinary tradition. Escape the eclectic city vibes and lounge poolside on the rooftop deck or sip a craft cocktail after hours at Tenn on Top, the hotel’s rooftop bar.

From the 1920s into the 60s and 70s, downtown Nashville boomed with department stores, hotels and entertainment. Today, architecture from this era has been given a new lease of life as boutique urban hideaways, discovers Grace Brewer.

Jermyn Street Revival

Like the proverbial phoenix, a once iconic British luxury brand has risen from the ashes to meet the needs of today’s sophisticated cannabis consumers.


It’s a crisp Monday morning in the heart of London - or so we can imagine - when William Astley first opens the doors of his intimate pipe divan at 109 Jermyn Street. The year is 1862, and the world is in flux: the American Civil War rages across the Atlantic, and the first ironclad ship has recently been launched into that bloody saga; rebellion is rippling through China, in part led by Imperialist influences from the west; and French, Spanish and British troops are fighting in Mexico.

However, it’s also a time of inspiration and creativity; while astronomer Alvan Graham Clark first sets his eyes upon the white dwarf star Sirius B, The Russian State Library is founded, the Thomas Page-designed Westminster Bridge is unveiled; Charles Dodgson, better known as Lewis Carroll, tells ten year old Alice Liddell a story during a rowboat trip that will become Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland; and Frenchman Victor Hugo prepares to publish his historical novel Les Misérables

It was at the Jermyn Street shop that WM Astley & Company sold bespoke pipes produced by the most esteemed craftsmen of the British Empire, including Charatan, James Upshall, L&JS, Bill Taylor of Ashton pipes, and Dunhill. Desired both for smoking and for collecting, Astley’s pipes ranged from 19th century pieces by Viennese masters through to bold, contemporary pipes for the era’s modern gentleman. The pipes of WM Astley & Company were coveted by high society and always demanded the highest prices.

Jermyn Street was an appropriate address for William’s (Bill to his closest consorts) new boutique. The quiet street, a stone’s throw from St James Park, the Royal Academy and Piccadilly Circus, had long played a role in the history of the city. Politicians and revolutionaries would assemble at The Gun Tavern, exiled French aristocrats at Grenier’s Hotel, and at Brunwick Hotel, emperor-turned-president Louis Napoleon III took up residence under the assumed name of Count D'Arenberg after his daring escape from the Fortress of Ham. Italian silk merchant Cesare Salvucci owned a shop on Jermyn Street, and rented the rooms upstairs to banker Theodore Rothschild. The Duke of Marlborough lived nearby when he was simply Colonel John Churchill, John Keyes Sherwin painted Euphrasia at his Jermyn Street boudoir, and down the road Isaac Newton, as Warden of the Mint, set up rooms at No.88. Even Jermyn Street’s own scoundrel, highwayman William Plunkett, was as renowned for his charm and elegance as he was for his daring as an outlaw.

By the time WA Astley & Company was founded, Jermyn Street had become a mecca for luxury British brands, including Edward Bates Hats, Church’s Shoes, Charatan Pipes and fragrance merchants Penhaligon's, and Bill’s boutique fit right in; the quintessential English pipe emporium quickly became a destination in its own right, a place of retreat and commentary, a destination for discovery and discourse, and a social benchmark in luxury and workmanship that was cherished by its esteemed, loyal and thoroughly international clientele.

When the company was finally forced to close its Jermyn Street enclave in the 1990s, its treasured inventory was snapped up by passionate collectors on either side of the Atlantic. It was thought this once great British luxury brand would be lost to tides of time.

However, the best stories always have a twist, and in 2014 WA & Company’s intellectual property was secured by a young


visionary and fellow Londoner, Joseph Batchelor. Joe had always had a passion for iconic brands and believed William’s pipe brand still had a story to tell 150 years after Bill opened his Jermyn Street divan.

“I was intrigued by the brand, by its heritage and its story, because it felt like something I was already a part of,” says Batchelor. “As a child I remembered accompanying my father to the East India Club on St James Square, where men in immaculate suits would smoke pipes and cigars and put rights to the world. I also remember walking down Jermyn Street when stopping in London on my way to rugby games at Twickenham and sensing the history and elegance that its boutiques offered. It’s a heritage that’s intoxicating.”

Under Batchelor’s guidance, Astleys has been relaunched as the modern incarnation of WA & Company. However, times have changed; in many parts of the world, tobacco is increasingly

taboo, pipes collected rather than smoked, and new consumers are looking for a brand that offers an experience as well as an inventory.

“The challenge was to find where a modern Astleys would fit with today’s sophisticated consumer,” says Batchelor. “Through a process of research and investigation and months of discussion, we settled on the emerging vape scene, and with the rapid change in legislation in North America, the focus naturally shifted towards the luxury cannabis vape sphere.”

It’s a bold evolution by any standards. However, the modern Astleys brand, which is set to launch in North America in 2019, has stayed true to the principles of WA & Company, of Jermyn Street, and of the best of British homegrown luxury.

“Astleys is less a rebirth of WM Astleys & Company as it is a


reimagining of this iconic luxury brand for today’s contemporary gentleman,” says Batchelor. “Some things have changed in the interim; London has grown while the world has shrunk, and now ideals are shared by people from across the globe, but what hasn’t changed is our consumer’s passion and appreciation for quality, heritage and innovation. It’s that passion, now shared by the great, great grandsons of our first customers, that fuels us and drives us forward as a contemporary luxury brand that’s still proudly British and which has its roots firmly planted in the sophistication of Jermyn Street.”

There’s little surprise that the cannabis market appealed to Batchelor, a stockbroker by trade. The rapid development of the North American cannabis market (and its flow on effect internationally) has caught some marketeers unaware. Slated to reach US$146 billion by 2025, according to a report by Grand View Research, the growth of the cannabis market is propelled by both the medicinal and recreational sectors, and while production has already been ramped up, the market has lacked brands that offer a real luxury experience, according to Batchelor. It gave him the inspiration for Astleys, a masculine and unapologetically sophisticated luxury lifestyle solution for today’s savvy consumer, and one that would reach well beyond vape devices.

So how do you turn a famous but defunct pipe brand into a contemporary cannabis company? The task to create Astleys’ launch vape products fell to creative director Fred Kirby, another London native with experience in product design and brand development.

“What we wanted to do with Astleys was instill a new product range with the rich heritage of the original that we all fell in love with,” says Kirby. “In a market dominated by devices that look like they were pinched from the set of a Star Wars film, we chose to focus on being experience driven, on

offering a seamless vaping experience without the fuss and mess of manual fill devices and without the mystery of vaping’s subculture roots.” The team was clear from the onset – Astleys wasn’t a vaper’s brand, nor was it a conventional cannabis company – it was a brand that catered to curious new consumers who wanted a product that fit snugly into their existing lifestyle personas. “Astleys’ products aren’t for cloud chasers, they’re for people who prefer a little subtlety,” says Kirby.

The result is the Atlantic, a pen-style device modelled on the iconic Robusto cigar, and the Cavendish, a pipe-style device that taps directly into the brand’s Jermyn Street roots. Both products are distinctly luxurious, button free, cartridgebased vape devices with a design DNA taken from the original product line and the world of luxury writing instruments.

Beyond the entry level devices, a special sub brand called William Astleys offers the brand the chance to collaborate with existing and emerging artisans and craftsmen by creating limitededition collections using rare wood finishes and customization. “The William Astleys collections will be very special indeed,” says Kirby. “In addition to being the very best products in the market, they will also be proving grounds for Astleys as a whole, a place where we can see what’s possible through inspirational collaborations.”

In addition to a range of device-specific accessories that include travel kits and leather sheaths, Astleys will also offer consumers a selection of masculine essentials, from small and medium leather goods through to cuff links, pocket squares, and hip flasks, with plans for CBD-laced wellness and grooming products down the line.

“We’re sure that Bill would be proud of how far the brand has come, and how it’s now reaching today’s sophisticated consumers, just as his boutique did a century and a half ago,” says Batchelor.


Renaissance Man of the Year

Actor, musician, producer, DJ, writer, director; stand-up. Nearly a decade in the making, Donald Glover’s polymath career now begs the question: is he the most important figure in modern show-business? By Peter Wallace.


Just two years ago, Donald Glover may have been a regular feature on comedy series and tirelessly working away under his musical alter ego, Childish Gambino, but he was in no way a recognizable face around the world. In fact, much of his early work saw the Californian-native delivering his best material behind-the-scenes as a writer rather than taking the spotlight himself.

Nowadays, a world without Glover seems inconceivable. Kicking things off with comedydrama Atlanta – a show in which the prodigiously talented Glover writes, directs, produces and stars – and his breakthrough album as Gambino, Awaken, My Love!, there was a building sense for some time that Glover was on the cusp of greatness. That pinnacle arrived this year with the Jim Crow-referencing, social-commentary-cummusic-video for Glover’s song This is America. Its debut at number one aside, the track amassed nearly 13 million views in the first 24 hours of its release, ensuring its status as the year’s most talked about music video (the current total stands at a mind boggling 442 million). Regardless of the stats, Glover reflects on his participation in one of 2018’s biggest showbiz moments with typical languidness.

“I am super happy about it,” the 35-year-old says. “It’s always great to be part of the conversation. It’s cool to be able to be part of that Ouija board of culture a little bit.”

Increasingly, Glover isn’t just appearing briefly but dominating that cultural Ouija board – his name is appearing with a regularity that would alarm even the most emboldened of spirithunters. If This is America wasn’t enough, then his subsequent projects – from a starring role as a young Lando Calrissian in Star Wars spinoff Solo, to lending his voice to the upcoming Disney live-action Lion King remake as Simba – surely confirm suspicions that Glover is coming to the zenith of his time on the silver screen.

“Films like Star Wars, they feel riskier to me,” he nods. “Because it’s like the Iliad or the Odyssey, but it’s not based on a book. Subconsciously it doesn’t feel like they [the producers] were

hedging their bets. They were not like: ‘This already had an audience.’ They tried it, and it could have failed, and it didn’t. Somebody really cared about it.”

That same sense of timelessness exudes from Glover; a perceptible aura that creations like This is America or Atlanta will have a lasting impact. His handle on all forms of artistic creation bridge a gap from the past. Glover is the closest thing modern show business has to a Renaissance Man, even if he sees it as less a mark of unbridled talents and more a logical taking of the many chances the 21st century has afforded him.

“I want to be interesting and speak a truth that people have to talk about,” he muses. “And I feel that’s easier to do over multiple media. I never really think of myself as trying to touch everything. Now this is the first time it’s easy to do that; technology has changed, and the way audiences enjoy things is different. It was harder for George Lucas to do movies and TV at the same time. It’s way easier for me and I have to take advantage.”

Even so, Glover’s haul of entertainment accolades –not least the Emmy, Grammy and Golden Globe he can lay claim to – signify that his recent projects stand on their own in terms of their significance.

“I tend to shy away from the word important,” he shrugs. “On Atlanta, one thing we always say is: We don’t want to preach about anything. We live in such important times and everything is so important. I also saw it when Girls came out. Everybody said when Girls came out, ‘This is so important and then by the second season nobody watched it. They were like: ‘Yeah, we know it’s good, it’s important.’ But it wasn’t fun anymore. It wasn’t interesting.”

But This Is America was important. It’s amalgamation of influences from across cinema and American

I want to be interesting and speak a truth that people have to talk about

society, from ground-breaking 2017 horror Get Out to the continuing threats of police brutality and gun violence, probably seemed to many as far a departure from Glover’s permagrinning Community alter ego, Troy, as could be fathomed. At a time where another Donald seems hellbent on stealing every headline with ever more egregious acts of indecency, Glover is becoming the perfect antidote to widespread division: dedicated, multi-talented, and mature enough to be faware of his own exponential, if hard-earned, success.

"You’re always ready, but you’re always not ready; it’s never really a good time,” he said earlier this year on his current reputation. "I’m happy that it happened when it happened because I don’t know if I would’ve handled it in the way that I have the ability to handle it now."

Perhaps comparing this Donald to his Presidential namesake is a stretch: there’s very little in the way of connecting factors apart from their matching monikers. But the past twelve months have seen Glover’s light eclipse even closer contemporaries. This was the year that Kanye seemed to stumble relentlessly from one high-profile blunder to another, and even Drake, a musician Glover looked to emulate in his earliest years, saw his dependable commercial successes offset by a nasty feud with Pusha T.

Amidst this mire, Glover’s Gambino track Feels Like Summer came swimming in This Is America’s wake, referencing Kanye’s troubles explicitly. It sent keyboard investigators scrabbling to connect reality to the video’s cartoonish counterpart, but even more explicitly did it place Glover/Gambino at the center of African American music. Even five years ago, this would have looked like an arrogant overstatement of intent on Glover’s part. Now, his inclusion is no less eyebrow-raising than his upcoming work on The Lion King alongside, among others, Chiwetel Ejiofor, James Earl Jones, and Beyoncé.

“When I was growing up it was harder for people to understand someone like me”, he says, “but that is kind of coming back. That Rat Pack thing, you can do music and comedy on the side. You can do that now because people are coming to you from so many different angles.

And it’s a global market. It’s not that weird to do it in London or Africa [but] in America people want to streamline the way they make money. Everywhere else people are like ‘He’s a showman – he does what he wants.’”

This mantra obviously appeals to Glover’s own sensibilities. This Is America, for example, was released while the artist himself was hosting an episode of Saturday Night Live. At the same time that Glover was making a debut appearance as MC of one of America’s most traditionally popular TV shows, Gambino was putting down a marker for the year’s pop culture moment. How many current stars could pull that off?

And, perhaps more to the point, where does he go from here? The seismic consequences of This Is America have left the world’s eyes tracking Glover’s every move. It’s a glare under which many of those before him have found themselves petrified, but there’s no sense of apprehension regarding a potential calcification or stagnation on Glover’s part. At 35, he’s already moved from comedy to drama, through soul, funk, hip-hop, cinema, music, stand-up, even fatherhood: “I haven’t really had to change anything,” he says of his relationship with young sons, Legend and Drake. “But it’s definitely given me another perception on what life is. It gives me a lot of context."

The same can be said of his connection to the wider zeitgeist – that “Ouija Board” of pop culture. Yes, there’s an extraordinary, amorphous quality to his output on stage, on screen, or in the studio. But it’s rooted to places and people in the same way that This Is America will be forever entwined with 2018 in the annals of human history, and whatever comes next from Glover/ Gambino will no doubt be utterly different, and unquestionably more of the same.

“Atlanta to me hasn't changed in a long time and it always seems to be a place that is reflecting black culture as a whole and is the epicentre of a lot of cultures,” he muses. “And I think if you're a great storyteller you have to talk about who we are and I don't want to label it – I'm just out here to make good things and I'm honored to be a part of it but I hope the honor comes later when I can sit back and take a look at it.”


Is SLR Set to Become the Netflix of VR Porn?

For decades porn has held a reputation as a seedy industry, dominated by shady characters and dodgy deals. However, over the past few years one European company has quietly established itself as a modern, forward thinking adult business, focusing on technological innovation and boasting a close-knit, gender balanced workforce. By David Chapman

SexLikeReal is a Netflix style online media service dedicated to virtual reality porn. Described by its devotees as the biggest thing to hit the porn world since the invention of the video camera, VR porn is 3D adult video that puts the user at the heart of the action through headsets such as the Oculus Rift or Samsung’s GearVR.

But SexLikeReal doesn’t regard itself as a porn company. “We consider ourselves a high-tech company first and foremost,” explains CEO Alex Novak. “Porn is simply where we apply our technology.”

His Slovenian company provides content from dozens of X-rated VR studios via a subscription service or one-off purchases, all fed through its cutting edge app. SexLikeReal has become a major player in the VR world since launching in September 2015, and currently streams around 30TB of video content in a typical day, while employing fifty full-time employees around the world, with over a dozen in its Slovenian office.

Key among these is SLR’s tech development team, who devote their time to improving all aspects of VR video. As a relatively new industry - the first VR porn scene was released in 2014 - there have been plenty of problems to iron out, which have been off-putting for new users. “For example, many studios fail to provide the proper encodings for each headset,” says Ivan. “So at SexLikeReal we encode each video into thirty different formats, to ensure the

highest possible quality on every headset.” The goal is to make experiencing VR porn as frictionless a process as possible.

They also remaster the original footage to enhance the quality, taking older videos with a jerky 30fps frame rate and upscaling them to 60fps, making the footage smoother and more realistic for the viewer.

As well as the technical side, SexLikeReal is a modern company in more socially conscious ways, as demonstrated by the strong female presence in the backroom staff. “It’s an amazing team to work with,” says Gea Verderber, who works in the marketing department. “They’re truly inspiring people, always open and willing to help.” It’s a far cry from the sleazy stereotype of yesteryear.

This gender balance reflects the growing mainstream acceptance of porn in society at large and the desire for a move toward a more ethical industry. “People now realise that not all porn sites are the same,” agrees Ivan. “Our platform is a win-win for consumers, pornstars and studios. If something goes wrong we’d go out of business fast, but thankfully we have a lot of support from the community.”

Thanks to the company’s inclusive working practices and determination to push VR technology forward, there’s a growing sense that SexLikeReal is the future of porn, and while the industry as a whole might have issues to address, it’s certainly a step in the right direction.


Bali's timeless rice terraces helped manage ancient water resources


Change Through Film

Three new documentaries tackle the topic of water as they attempt to thrust the realities of climate change into the minds of the world, discovers Phoebe Taylor.


The messages are certainly out therethey’re everywhere - but all too often talk of climate change, melting polar ice caps, species extinction and the like falls on ears that are not deaf but certainly hard of hearing. Three dynamic new documentaries tackle very different societies and solutions but share a common theme – the importance of water. Whether it’s rising sea levels, water shortages caused by over consumption, or polluted lakes and rivers, issues relating to water play leading lady in these thought provoking new flicks.

Anote’s Ark focuses on the people of the Republic of Kiribati, a low-lying South Pacific island nation for whom rising ocean levels spell imminent annihilation. Whilst its President, Anote Tong, races against time to broker international climate treaties which could help save Kiribati, a parallel story unfolds as a young mother of six, Sermary Tiare, makes the weighty decision to relocate her family to New Zealand.

Filmmaker Matthieu Rytz had to contend with many

challenges, including Kiribati’s geographic isolation, a lack of electricity supply outside the capital, and the inability to buy basics such as batteries anywhere on the island whilst producing a thoughtinspiring work that has appeared at both Sundance and Big Sky film festivals.

Rytz, a visual anthropologist by training, felt it was crucial to tell Kiribati’s story and to shed light on what he considers “a new phenomenon that goes way beyond national boundaries, our collective responsibility to take action against the global effects of climate change.”

Across the Pacific, in Bali, Balancing the Waters presents a vision of how water resource challenges can be ameliorated through technology, innovation and sound business practices. Produced by directors Anton Goenechea and Falkwyn Goyeneche, and instigated by a passionate troupe of Bali-based expats including Sayan Gulino, CEO of the island’s Waterbom waterpark, Balancing


(Clockwise from far left); Students researching climate change in Inventing Tomorrow; polluted wasteland in Bangalore; Waterbom CEO Sayan Gulino; rising ocean levels threaten remote Kiribati.

the Waters explores Bali’s traditional 9th century irrigation system, in which spirituality and agriculture once went hand in hand.

This system, known as Subak, once sustainably managed the island’s precious water resources. However, they have now become threatened by tourism development, population growth and climate change, which collectively have driven Bali’s water table to dangerously low levels. Now, Waterbom’s management is looking to the traditions of Subak to develop a complex environmental management system that has seen the waterpark become the first carbon neutral tourism operation in Bali.

Gulino, a visionary who has led the charge towards sustainable development on the holiday island, says that the documentary’s lessons are universally relevant. “By focusing on Bali’s plight, this documentary presents us with the current state of affairs regarding water in our modern world, and what we can do to turn this potentially disastrous situation into a prosperous one”.

Turning disasters into prosperity is a message which is shared by Inventing Tomorrow. This inspiring documentary follows six teenagers from across the world as they develop cutting-edge

solutions to combat the environmental destruction being wrought in their hometowns and local regions. As they prepare their projects for the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF), the largest gathering of high school scientists in the world, viewers join the group as the students navigate the difficulties of adolescence and strengthen their determination to change the future.

One of the issues tackled by 16 year-old Sahithi Pingali is extreme water pollution in her hometown of Bangalore, India, an issue that became paramount after the lake behind her house burst into flames. Now she works on citizen-led technological solutions to reduce the dumping of raw sewage into open water. “Our student scientists”, says director Laura Nix, “are observing the damaged planet they’ve inherited, asking the right questions, and inventing solutions to create a path forward.”

Despite the bleak mantra of climate change, these insightful documentaries contain a cautious optimism for the future. A deep passion for protecting our world is a shared thread running through all three projects, providing hope for global, interconnected solutions to climate change and perhaps a message that can finally be heard by the world.


Loke & Load

Fresh from her success in ground-breaking comedy Crazy Rich Asians, Nick Walton talks with Victoria Loke about dream destinations, whirlwind schedules, unusual dining and new roles for Asian actors in Hollywood.

You grew up in Singapore; what did you miss most when you left home?

Singapore is a multicultural cosmopolitan city and the early exposure to so many different cultures and traditions cultivated a sense of openness and fluidity that is a big part of who I am today. I traveled a lot as a child too, because of my parents’ work, and I suppose it’s because of this that I always feel at home wherever I go.

What kind of traveler would you describe yourself as?

I would like to consider myself a respectful traveler. I believe that is the highest virtue when it comes to traveling. Having someone want to share their culture with you is such a fortunate thing, and to approach it with a sense of gratitude rather than entitlement is so important.

Crazy Rich Asians is a great laugh but it’s also a milestone for Asian actors; what does the film represent to you?

Crazy Rich Asians is my first studio feature, and that in itself is such a huge milestone for me personally. On top of that, as an Asian actor who has experienced the whitewashing of roles in Hollywood, where actors of color are sidelined as token characters or two-dimensional caricatures, I am so hopeful that this movie shifts the needle and opens up more possibilities for Asian actors to receive better roles and better representation. To me, Crazy Rich Asians represents hope in so many ways.


You studied at Gallatin School of Individualized Study at New York University; what’s a hidden gem from the city that never sleeps?

In New York I love hanging out in Chinatown, which has so much history and personality and heart; it is the oldest standing neighborhood in Manhattan. I definitely recommend spending a day at The Cloisters up in Washington Heights too, which is truly a hidden gem of the city.

Crazy Rich Asians tells a rather satirical side to Singapore. What are your recommendations for travelers looking to discover the Lion City beyond the glamour?

My recommendation would be to discover Singapore’s rich history as a port city from even before the days of British colonization. Our indigenous Malay population was part of a thriving seafaring community throughout the region and beyond, and the Malay Heritage Centre in Kampong Glam is a great place to start learning about the real Lion City — they even offer heritage trails in the area.

It’s happy hour in your favorite city –

where are we headed and what are we drinking?

I cannot even begin to shortlist the cities I would consider my favorite, so I will just go with Tokyo since I’m here right now. We are headed to The Bar at the Ritz Carlton Tokyo in Roppongi Hills, which has the most beautiful views of Tokyo, especially at sunset, and I’m drinking a French 75.

What destinations are on your bucket list?

I was in Jaipur last year, so I would love to explore the rest of Rajasthan, and to spend more time in Delhi as well. Morocco has been on my bucket list for the longest time, along with Moscow and Laos. I really want to travel around Latin America too.

Singaporeans are acclaimed foodies –tell us about your most memorable meal while traveling.

What immediately comes to mind is a meal I had in Brussels on recommendation from my host at the time, who is an avant-garde chef. It was a restaurant that exclusively served dishes made with offal, and it was the first time I remember eating an animal brain. Everything was absolutely delicious, so be sure to check out Viva M’Boma if you’re ever in Brussels!


Victorian Vogue

To understand the DNA of men’s fashion today, we need only to look to the Victorian era, the Modern Age of men’s formalwear, discovers Divia Harilela.


When one thinks of the Victorian period, visions of gentlemen dressed in classic finery including dress coats and top hats immediately come to mind (the less said about the corsets, the better). The look is light-years apart – both literally and figuratively – from how men dress today. That being said, the era was fundamental in transforming the way men perceived and integrated clothing into their everyday lives.

The Victorian era began in the United Kingdom with the coronation of Queen Victoria in 1837, at the tender age of 18 and lasted until 1901. The young queen was adventurous and unafraid to try new things and the Victorian era is best known as one of creative awakening, especially in men’s fashion.

“The Victorian era includes the height of the industrial revolution, during which mass, machine-assisted production of cloth textiles and clothing came about,” says Mark Cho, co-founder of classic menswear boutique The Armoury, which boasts stores in Hong Kong and New York. “Men went from having very few clothes to a few outfits. Buying clothing was a very large part of a person’s expenditure.”


According to author and menswear journalist Bruce Boyer, the most popular daytime attire for Victorian gentleman consisted of a simple woolen frock coat and trousers, which was often worn with a tall hat, shirt and bow tie. The coat was usually single- or double-breasted with a seamed waist and skirted back. It was so popular that it eventually replaced the tail coat, which was considered too stuffy and formal. In addition, the blazer became popular among active gentlemen.

“During this time comfort was becoming more important in men’s clothing and the lounge suit began to be worn during the day time,” says Boyer. “The lounge jacket was also beginning to be worn for sports occasions. It is this growing emphasis on comfort and informality that begins to separate the Victorians from previous generations, and thus constitutes the first truly Modern Age in clothing.”

More interestingly, while the three-piece suit was created in the 1870s, it was the frock coat that would inspire an essential piece of clothing that would later become a mainstay in modern men’s fashion – the classic two-piece lounge suit - which consisted of a shorter length suit jacket with lapels and trousers. By the beginning of the 20th century frock coats had all but disappeared as men embraced a more causal and easy way of dressing

“Today the lounge suit - single- or double-breasted, two- or three-piece - which began to be seen on men by 1850, is still the acknowledged dress of the international businessman, whether in New York, Beijing, Mexico City or Tokyo. Little has changed in the technical aspects of tailoring since then. Men’s tailored garments look surprisingly the same as they did a hundred years ago, and the suits we wear today were designed 150 years ago. The changes have come mostly in the weight of garments,” says Boyer.

“By the end of the Victorian period and throughout the Edwardian period, men’s clothing began to resemble today’s fashion much more closely,” adds Cho.

By the end of the Victorian period and throughout the Edwardian period, men’s clothing began to resemble today’s fashion much more closely

Victorian Favorites Found in Fashion Today


It’s common to find waistcoats featuring flaps on the lower pockets and lapels - a style that dates back to the Victorian period. Today, however, your waistcoat does not need to match your jacket or trousers. It has also been re-envisaged as knitwear or in fun fabrics including brocade silk. If you want to show some extra personality, opt for styles covered in patterns or in bold colors.

Checked Trousers

During the 1860s trousers in plaids and checks were often worn with dark coats. These days this classic print comes in a multitude of options, from Prince of Wales and houndstooth to the more graphic windowpane pattern. Instead of pairing it with a tailored jacket go for something casual like a white T-shirt or bomber jacket. Just be sure to wear it with separates in neutral and understated tones to avoid it looking too costume-y.


Today the blazer is one of the most popular modern jackets, but it first become trendy in the 1880s. Back then it was limited to sporting wear and other casual activities, and often came in bright colors. Today’s blazers come in all shapes and sizes – for fall/winter 2018, choose from velvet or deconstructed styles.


Popular among the middle class, there were many ways a Victorian gentleman would wear his necktie, which was preferably made of silk. Modern variations include knitted versions and textured fabrics. Skinny styles also add a rock ‘n’ roll edge.

The 3/4 length coat

The frock coat may be long gone, but its distant relative is a great option for men looking for lightweight outerwear. Because of its longer length, opt for streamlined, tailored silhouettes while lighter fabrics will also create a more contemporary look.


Form Follows Comfort

Dress Shoes

You Can Sprint In

Let’s be honest – men have a love/hate relationship with dress shoes. On one side, nothing looks better than a pair of gleaming brogues or derbys, especially when matched with a tailored suit. Unfortunately, by the time the day is over, our feet are physically bruised from the narrowness and stiffness of the typical dress shoe. Whoever said, “looking good comes at a price” must have worn their fair share of oxfords and wingtips. One company which has heard our cry is Wolf & Shepherd, which specializes in dress shoes so comfortable the company’s founder, Justin Schneider, ran a marathon in them. Schneider knows a thing or two about comfortable footwear from his days as a track and field athlete at Notre Dame. Seeing a gap in the marketplace for comfortable dress shoes, he used his experience as a designer at Adidas to craft a dress shoe with luxury appeal and the comfort of a sneaker.

The Feel Good Bag

Every guy needs a workbag – it’s essentially his daily sidekick – so choosing one that will efficiently store all your items while being easy to carry is a must. With the countless bag options available, choosing just one from the pack may seem overwhelming. Luckily, we did it for you. The BOITA bag is a carry all that has as many features as your iPhone, and is just as sleek. Created from recyclable bottles (so you know you’re doing your part for the planet), the BOITA Bag features an outer shell in premium PU leather and shoulder padding in BLOOM foam, the world’s first plant-based performance driven foam. There are also magnetic handles with security pockets to keep your essentials secure. If backpacks aren’t your thing, BOITA also has a briefcase option suitable for the office.

Office style essentials are being given a comfort overhaul by innovative companies looking to offer gentlemen smarter alternatives, discovers Tony Logan.

The Indestructible Dress Shirt

You’re kicking your day off with a gourmet breakfast, only to get up from the table and spill a cup of coffee on your favorite dress shirt…cue the dramatic music. This delay causes you to miss your taxi, which results in you being late to your meeting, which ends with your client signing with another firm - all because of your reckless coffee drinking! I’m being a little dramatic but I’m sure that you can relate to this scenario. At some point, we’ve all had to take that walk of shame to the bathroom to grab a paper towel and try to save what’s left of our shirt. Fortunately, Woodies dress shirts come equipped with stain-repelling technology to keep moisture rolling off you like water off a metaphorical duck’s back. The shirt also comes equipped with smart stretch fabric that allows you to move and breathe with ease without that stiff starch feeling, ensuring a clean, stylish look free from stains and restraint.

Work Pants for the Weekend

Trousers play a vital role in our day and it's a shame that they don’t get the credit and attention they deserve. And what do we do to thank them? We stuff our pocket with wallets and oversized phones. What if you had a pair of dress pants that did more than simply store your electronic devices; a pair that were actually comfortable and gave you the “broken in” feeling of your favorite Saturday jeans? The interesting thing about Longhaul Merino Wool Pants is that they’re designed with commuters and travelers in mind. These pants are light, easy to pack, water-resistant and constructed from Australian merino wool, cotton, and spandex for a comfortable stretch fit. With the cool season already starting to settle in, having a pair of wool pants to protect your body from the cold may prove to be a wise investment.

It’s a Cinch!

Belts do more than just hold up your trousers; they also reveal a sense of confidence. Maybe that’s why cowboys, with their shiny fist-sized belt buckles, look so strident in Spaghetti Westerns. Over time, our belts take a beating and nothing can diminish your whole look within seconds like worn-out belt leather – there’s a distinct difference between a beautifully-aged belt and one that’s clinging on for dear life. Let’s give our waist the respect it deserves with a belt that’s going to last, sit comfortably, and adjust to our size. The comfort of Cinch belts is made possible by their InfiniTrack Technology, which allows the user to pull the buckle along a track of teeth, rather than spaced holes, for an adjustable fit. You no longer have to worry about torn belt holes or even trying to make your own incisions for a tighter fit - everything is adjustable to your comfort. When you’re ready to loosen and retire your belt for the day, simply lift up the buckle and pull out the strap. Every Cinch belt is constructed from full-grain leather and comes with a lifetime guarantee.


The Death of

Creative Advertising

The three-martini lunch is well and truly over, and the expense accounts have been closed. Amy Nelmes Bissett looks at the direction today’s creative advertising industry is headed.


In 1960s Midtown New York, a mid-week lunchtime at Rainbow’s Grill was a hotbed of creativity. Men in suits sat at the whitelinen tables, all grandly swinging their creative ideas as if an extension of their manliness. Perhaps the most creative act within this daily pantomime was “the reach”, a performance in which both diners reached for the bill at the end of a long lunch. There was subtle showmanship to this polite challenge, an act that was less about chivalry and hospitality, and more about who had the biggest expense account.

The three-martini lunch is said to have - in part - fueled the “creative revolution” in advertising that began in the 1960s, during the golden age of print and the rise of television, a time when concepts were thrashed out over steak, chopped salad and desert-dry martinis. But the long lunch has seen a slow demise. These days Madison Avenue, the ruling nest of the advertising world, is paradoxically teetotal, and that’s not just the result of those generous expense accounts being cut.


US marketing consultant Michael Farmer has not only spoken at length about the modern advertising industry but has also written a book, Madison Avenue Manslaughter, detailing his damning critique.

“Agencies are now working on a very high volume of less complex and much less interesting briefs; many of them focus on Facebook and Instagram posts, email marketing and the like,” says Farmer. “By my calculations, a typical creative in 1992 worked on seven briefs per year. Today, the number is closer to 300. The pay is poor, hours are appalling and there are fewer perks.”

As Farmer wrote in his book “agencies and their clients need to recapture some of the respect, fun and profitability of working in what was once one of the most fulfilling and glamorous of industries but has become a grim sweatshop for the people who do the work.”

The world was once fascinated by the advertising men of the 50s and 60s. It was a world of glamour. Creativity was at its heart, fueled by long lunches, the luxury of elastic time demands and a wealth of financial resources. It was all about finding a unique, effective, creative way to sell both the exciting and the mundane - everything from Coca Cola to soap. Then technology arrived.


It was once believed that it would be the burger-flipping jobs that would be made redundant by the increasing application of technology, but it’s the creatives who have been left twitching about their dramatically changing future; advertising is one industry that’s seen a substantial shift from a focus on ideas to a business that now plays, and rather un-sexily so, with numbers.

A report by Salesforce’s Digital Advertising, based on a global survey of 900 advertising leaders around the world, showed that in 2019, 91 percent of advertisers have or plan to adopt a data management platform to cater to the accelerating growth of data-driven advertising.

Facebook and Google are the gatekeepers to the world’s largest personal data hoards. We know more about audiences than ever before, and that means that advertising is now created without the expense and time, and without a truly creative process. Instead, a computer now targets adverts directly to the audience that is most likely to purchase, via social media. It’s tech that is doing the leg work, with real-life staff simply adding a human touch to keep things ticking along nicely. “There’s not much of a challenge, other than how to get the stuff out the door on time,” says Farmer.

However, there is one group that’s enjoying a modern twist on the power lunch and that’s influencers. Brands are now more likely to spend those ad dollars on real-life personalities on Instagram and Facebook, rather than put their trust in agencies and conventional advertising. Influencers are the new Don Drapers of the world. They’re usually aesthetically blessed, beautifully-dressed and can be found at the openings, launches and lengthy-free lunches that brands roll out around the world.

Another major difference is that this new world order is one in which women play an increasingly important role. Sway Group CEO Danielle Wiley’s business focus is on influencer marketing. She explains that content created by social media influencers is cost effective and time effective but above all, it’s what the consumer actually wants to see.

“We love that it’s no longer men in suits telling moms and women what they want,” says Wiley. “Influencer content that engages women is produced by women with similar or at least relatable lives. Their content cuts through traditional ad noise and reaches women on the platforms where they are already interacting daily.”

And it can be pretty lucrative. The going rate for influencer-created content ranges anywhere from $500 to more than $20,000 for each sponsored post. However, even the future of social media stars is looking a little shaky, with an increasing realization that even these cut-and-dry transactions might not be all they seem thanks to the ease of buying faked social media engagement.

So, what’s the future? Well, it’s a future based on certainty. The game played by the Mad Men of yesteryear was one of chance. Selling the right product to the right people just at the right time. Sometimes an idea worked, and when it did it was glorious, but just as often those ideas slid into the gutter.

The future of advertising is one stacked towards definite wins, and that comes from understanding an intricate new game - analytics. Mad men have been replaced by math men and women who don’t want their data reading clouded over by three martinis in the middle of the day, but prefer to keep an eye on the numbers, with a lunch eaten firmly at their desk and the only 'reach' being for the computer mouse.


The Domain of Millionaires

Forget St Barths, Monte Carlo or Ibiza Magna, the superyacht set are now looking for more extreme locales for their next vacation on the high seas. By Nick Walton


It’s that magical moment between day and night, when the sun puts on an awe-inspiring encore while the inky darkness of night swallows up its stage. Far below, another performance is being enjoyed by guests of a sleek superyacht; a pod of inquisitive humpback whales ring the vessel, slapping their flukes against the shimmering water and filling the air with honeyhued mist as they prepare for their next dive. Not content with simply watching this breathtaking performance from the decks, we bundle up and take to the water in a fleet of military-grade zodiacs for a mesmerizing up-close-and-personal Antarctic encounter the likes of which few have experienced.

It's an encounter that an increasing number of ultra-wealthy travelers are seeking, as they soar over conventional destinations like Monaco and

Tahiti in their private jets, en route to the world’s farthest flung corners, where a small fleet of expedition-ready superyachts offer creature comforts and unforgettable memories in equal measure. The global superyacht charter market in growing in leaps and bounds, with leading charter companies reporting double digital growth. But not all charter vessels are created equal; destinations like Antarctica, the Arctic, Melanesia and North Asia require specialist vessels with ice-strengthened hulls, sophisticated navigation systems, and the kinds of built-in redundancies that will have you thanking your lucky stars if things go awry thousands of kilometers from help.

We’re cruising the Antarctic Peninsula aboard the beautiful Hanse Explorer, one of the custom-built yachts used by specialist superyacht charter gurus EYOS Expeditions. A ground-breaking charter business founded by Tim Soper and Rob McCallum and operated by a clutch of hardy-yet passionate travelers, including experienced marine officer turned-CEO Ben Lyons, EYOS will take you, your friends, and your superyacht (if you’re fortunate enough to have one) to almost anywhere on the planet you so desire.

“The polar regions are clearly the ‘hot’ destination now for expedition yachts and we’re seeing more and more yachts venturing into more distant itineraries,” says Lyons as he guides our zodiac. “People that travel with us on expeditions want to see, learn and do more. They’re interested in where they’re going, and they have a different view of what luxury and privilege mean. To them, luxury isn’t getting into the top restaurant in St Barths – it’s about going somewhere nobody else can get to.”

If you don’t count a superyacht among your most prized possessions (or don’t fancy scraping the paintwork of your palace at


sea) EYOS also offers access to a myriad of worldclass expedition-ready charter yachts, like the Hanse Explorer, priced up to US$1 million a week. In addition to the charter, EYOS supply a handselected team of experienced expeditionary crew and guides, offering the perfect marriage of luxury and logistics.

“The trend towards expedition yachting mirrors the explosive growth in the expedition cruise industry,” says Lyons. “We see a real interest in yacht clients wanting to go beyond the Caribbean and Mediterranean. Seven years ago, there might have only been one yacht in Antarctica for charter. This season, we’ll be working with six private yachts, all

but one of which are available for charter. In the Arctic, we see the same thing.”

A key component in this growth is the ability to now fly over rather than battle your way through the dreaded Drake Passage - a tumultuous strait between Antarctica and South American that's often regarded as the most violent on the planet – landing by charter flight at King George Island, on the cusp of the Antarctic Peninsula. Leave the mainland after breakfast and you can be cruising the likes of the infamously ice-choked Antarctic Sound by lunch.

The Sound, our first stop, is a thrilling landscape


rarely visited by the larger commercial vessels, which ply the west coast of the Peninsula on regular but inflexible itineraries. Among the towering icebergs of the Peninsula’s northeastern tip is where our agile vessel comes into her own. With her navy-blue hull and sleek, rakish lines, the Hanse Explorer is one of EYOS’ most popular charter yachts and wouldn’t look out of place in a Mediterranean marina. But beneath the Ferrari-like aesthetics lie cutting-edge environmental systems, the highest rating for an ice strengthened hull, powerful engines, and a 9,000nm cruising range. In addition, she accommodates 12 guests in spacious ensuite staterooms, and boasts sublime lounges and dining rooms, open sun decks, and an experienced hotel crew who cater to every guest’s whims.

A few days into our week-long adventure, I rise just before dawn – or at least the transition between the shades of twilight that represents the birth of a new day this close to the South Pole – and join captain Jens Köthen, a perpetually cheerful German with the effortless grace of a luxury hotel manager, on the bridge. The Hanse Explorer has an open bridge policy, offering guests a unique perspective on the challenges of Antarctic navigation. The horizon, a silver line that seems to drift in and out of sight as if in a dream, is gradually broken by great slabs of ice the size of city blocks, each emerging from the morning mist like the vanguard of an approaching horde.

Each evening, over canapes in the saloon, expedition leader Richard White, an adventure veteran, outlines the plans for the day ahead, but there is an inherent flexibility sewn like gold threads into the best laid plans because there’s no telling what mother nature might offer. See something you like? Land on a beach where you just might be the first human visitor. Crave new found friends? Arrange a visit to a remote scientific base. Greeted by pods of orca in Niko Harbor? Launch the zodiacs! Even shy Portuguese chef Luis Galego Pião follows the mantra “the destination comes first”, and the Baked Alaska be dammed.

“Private charters mean freedom for a select few,” says White, who, during one such outing, expertly guides our zodiac through narrow channels between


towering cliffs, Arctic terns dipping and darting high above. “These are people who are well off and want to use their money to discover the wonders of the world, and we’re only too happy to take them there.”

Each day offers a new adventure, a new discovery. In Antarctic Sound, we cruise through great sea caves and brave ocean swells before beaching at Brown Bluff where, in the shadows of snow dusted cliffs, ranks of ice cathedrals, some blindingly white, others majestically blue, litter the bay. In Mikkelsen Harbor we’re welcomed by roaring fur seals, oblivious Adélie penguins, and the weathered wrecks of timber long boats dating from the region’s bloody whaling history; and to the south, in the Grandidier Channel, farther than commercial vessels dare to tread, we discover great sways of sea ice floes, which jostle for

space with icebergs that rival Notre Dame in size and intricacy. After slicing and ploughing our way through the ice, the captain positions the bow against a tennis court-sized floe, offering us the perfect Antarctica photo op as the snow fall clears and the sun baths the shimmering landscape in gold.

Although Antarctica is the most popular, many other destinations are seducing adventurous superyacht travelers. “Papua New Guinea in particular has become a key destination,” says Lyons. “There’s intact culture, excellent diving and WWII history. It is an anthropologist’s dream.” He also counts the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, and Indonesia’s Raja Ampat as emerging locales, but for us, the magic is here in Antarctica, where the heavens meet the ice, and where the crowds of city life are a distant memory.


Arctic Chic

Outdoor specialists The North Face has collaborated with Japanese designer Junya Watanabe and fashion brand Comme des Garçons to create a jacket that greys the lines between functionality and haute couture. With a price tag north of US$2,500, the Terra 65 jacket is made from three-layer Goretex Windstopper fabric, which ensures you’re kept sheltered from the elements while retaining heat within. There’s an adjustable hood, and reinforced collar and elbows in corduroy, as well as a series of useful pockets for life’s little necessities. There’s also a day pack incorporated into the jacket, which makes the combo ideal for those space-strapped charter flights.

Keeping your hands warm is crucial in the poles and the Eigerioch Pro Gloves from Mammut are a robust take on the classic mitten that feature a pre-shaped design tailored to your hand. With palms in supple yet water-resistant goat’s leather and heels and outer edges in abrasionproof Pittards Atamaca, high-quality PrimaLoft insulation will keep your digits dexterous, while carabiner webbing, storm lines and connection hooks mean the gloves will never go astray. KIT OUT

Perfectly suited for heading off the trail, the new Vasque Monolith Ultradry Hiking Boots feature an UltraDry waterproof and breathable membrane to keep feet dry, durable waterproof leather and abrasion-resistant uppers, and a dual-density EVA footbed for ultimate comfort. Signature Vasque Monolith rubber soles will ensure you start every journey on the right footing.

If you’re headed to Antarctica, or the Arctic for that matter, you’re going to have to travel a long way and endure whatever Mother Nature sees fit to throw at you when you arrive, so it pays to be prepared. Here are a few essentials for intrepid travelers looking to reach new horizons.
Keep toasty with this Re-Wood Scarf from Fjall Raven. Not only does it boast three bold hues and the same properties as virgin wool, but it’s made from recycled spill from the Italian textile industry, meaning you’re doing your part for the planet while also fending off the chills. 58 THE EDITION ISSUE#1

Stay powered up with the rugged XGB3, an ultracompact external portable charger and power bank for travelers on the go. Able to simultaneously recharge mobile and USB devices – from smart phones and GoPros to noise-reduction headphones – and add 15 hours talk time or 100 hours of audio to your daily routine, the 3,000mAh XGB3 is coated in water-resistant rubber which means it just might last longer than you.

Long journeys require a little patience and serenity and you’ll find the latter thanks to arguably the best noise canceling headphones on the market, the Bose QuietComfort 35 IIs. Lightweight and supercomfortable thanks to Alcantara accents, these revolutionary, Alexa and Google Assistant-ready headphones may not be the newest on the market but for regular jetsetters they’re a fundamental component to any go bag. Completely wireless, with market leading noise canceling technology (adjustable to your environment), the QC35IIs not only offer 20 hours of peace and quiet with each charge but also come in a total of 26 color combinations.

Keep warm with a timber-toned canteen from the Corkcicle Walnut Wood collection. Inspired by nature, this sleek flask will keep your favorite beverages – and you – toasty for up to 25 hours as you navigate chilly climes. A slip-proof silicone bottom and easy-grip sides help keep the good stuff inside and not on the deck.

Stay connected wherever you choose to roam with the Garmin inReach Mini, a pint-sized, compact satellite communicator that offers adventurers two-way messaging and a handy 24/7 SOS function. Measuring just under four inches tall, the inReach Mini can slip into a backpack or jacket pocket and can quickly connect to a smartphone or tablet via Bluetooth to send emails and messages via the brand’s Earthmate app. Small but mighty, the inReach Mini is impact resistant and waterrated to IPX7 2, so it’s built tough to withstand the most extreme of conditions.

Keep the cold at bay on those charter flights to the far corners of the world with the Hot Toddy Carry On Cocktail Kit from W&P Design. This pocket-sized kit contains almost all the essentials you’ll need to craft a duo of steaming Hot Toddys, including small-batch ginger syrup and all-natural lemon, and cinnamon sticks. There’s a travel-sized bar spoon, a recipe card and even a linen coaster, so you can keep things classy at 35,000ft.


The Constant Cajun

Dynamic New Orleans chef Isaac Toups is giving Cajun cuisine a contemporary new edge.

When did you know you wanted to cook for a living?

It was as soon as I started my first cooking job at Prejean’s in Lafayette. I immediately fell in love.

You were influenced by both grandmothers; how did they inspire your culinary style?

As a Cajun, I grew up with very resourceful grandmothers and they inspired in me just that – resourcefulness. They were both masters at making it happen. They could feed a ton of people with almost no notice. That’s what we Cajuns do. We take whatever is available and find a way to work with it – whether it’s crawfish, duck, rice, or sugarcane. It’s all about making do with what you have. You just have to make it taste good!

When we think of southern cooking, we tend to think of heavy, spicy, home-style dishes. Is this justified and how do you define your ‘New Cajun’ approach?

It’s totally justified. You hit it on the head. I define the new Cajun approach as utilising modern techniques and the wonderful ability to work with any type of ingredient and incorporate it into a dish.

Cajun cuisine is rich in history and heritage – how do you maintain the balance between antiquity and modernity?

In my mind I’m cooking Cajun food so it’s not a line I worry about crossing, and it’s natural for me to be a mix of old and new as I evolve as a chef.

Tell us about your recently-released cookbook Chasing the Gator – Isaac

Toups & the New Cajun Cooking. Chasing the Gator is a hands-on demystifying Cajun cookbook that breaks down the classics, like couvillion and gumbo, in a way that anyone can make them. Well, at least I hope!

What ingredients are you experimenting with at the moment?

I recently started experimenting with Korean vinegars. They have a nice tang but aren’t too sour, and they add some really good, interesting flavours to any dish.

You run two leading restaurants in New Orleans; how is the city’s dining scene evolving and where do you eat out when you’re off the clock?

What people are seeing in terms of the food scene in New Orleans right now, is a melding of the last 300 years of influence, including French, Spanish, Afro-Caribbean, Vietnamese, Creole, and Cajun. The food here continues to evolve as chefs draw inspiration from different cuisines, but the rich history will forever remain a part of the food culture here. It’s a great thing we’ve got going on.

I love Marjie’s Grill. Chef Marcus is crushing it. MoPho is another one of my go-tos. My wife Amanda and I eat there a lot, probably more than we should. You can’t go wrong with Willa Jean – Kelly Fields is a genius.

What’s a signature Toups family dish every diner should try before they die?

Maw Maw Toups Seafood Couvillion. It’s my grandmother’s seafood stew recipe and every time she’d make it, she would catch and clean the fish herself. It’s always been a crowd pleaser and one of my favourite things to make.


From private dinner parties to intimate pop-up events and hotel room service menus, chefs are putting cannabis cuisine on the map, discovers Jo Stewart.


Anyone partial to a cannabis gummy or hash brownie will know that the world of marijuana edibles has exploded thanks to widespread changes in cannabis laws, with the market for edibles set to grow to $4 billion by 2022. But there’s more to cooking with cannabis than sweet snacks. Cannabis is now infiltrating North America’s fine dining scene, with the humble plant now boasting bona fide culinary credentials. Once associated with bong-smoking college drop outs, chefs are taking the sticky icky from the fringes into the spotlight.

Cooking up something good

Manny Mendoza is on a mission to change perceptions about cannabis, one meal at a time. As the co-founder of Herbal Notes, the Chicagoborn chef hosts intimate, pop-up culinary events that sell out within days of tickets going on sale.

“Food is the universal language. Everybody eats. If you appreciate wine, cheese, craft spirits and cigars, then cannabis is no different,” says Manny.

Education is a prominent part of the Herbal Notes experience. While sharing cannabis-infused dishes, guests learn about everything from horticulture to the differences between strains of cannabis.

“We take a holistic approach. Education is everything. Cannabis is a plant-based medicine that millions of people around the world consume for many reasons. In the United States there’s still stigma associated with cannabis use but we’re trying to change the perception that weed gets you high and causes you to make poor life decisions,” says Manny.

From curious millennials to 80-year-old navy veterans, people from diverse backgrounds come together at Herbal Notes brunches and dinners. A pre-event questionnaire gauges each guest’s level of tolerance and experience with cannabis, to ensure Manny gets the dosing right. “When you eat cannabis, it takes the body a long time to process and digest, so we work with mild doses,” says Manny.

DIY (Dose It Yourself) sauces allow guests to control the dosage added to their meals while other dishes feature ingredients infused with CBD (cannabidiol) or THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), elements of the cannabis plant.


From American classics like CBD-infused fried chicken (and waffles of course) to smoked jerk chicken made with a THC-infused marinade, Manny’s menu traverses the global culinary landscape. As a 420-friendly space, guests can also smoke or use vape pens to consume cannabis.

Squashing stoner stereotypes is hard work though, with many roadblocks in the way of opening a permanent restaurant. “There are huge barriers… so starting a standalone restaurant isn’t feasible right now because of the permits required. That’s why I host private, popup events,” explains Manny. “Hopefully more progressive states like California and Colorado will have permanent restaurants that serve cannabis in the future.”

Medicinal munchies

Chris Sayegh (aka the Herbal Chef) is another cannabisloving chef who hasn’t let a lack of a permanent restaurant space hold him back. Throwing pop-up banquets held in secret locations everywhere from Denver to Vancouver, Chris has taken his show on the road to bring cannabis cuisine to discerning diners.

The pioneering chef’s Instagram account (@the_herbal_ chef) is filled with shots of sophisticated fare. Dishes like pineapple sorbet infused with 5mg of water-soluble CBD and langoustine bisque containing 5mg of THC prove that cannabis has a place in North America’s fine dining scene.

Beyond creating delicious food, Chris believes that the medicinal benefits of cannabis make it not just a helpful plant, but a necessary one.

“Cannabis has such an incredible ability to help humanity in a variety of ways. For instance, if you were to look at the medicinal benefits alone, you are talking about reframing healthcare as we know it,” says Chris.

Used to treat a range of medical issues including chronic pain and epilepsy, for chefs like Manny and Chris, cooking with cannabis isn’t just about plating up Instagram-worthy dishes, it’s about helping people overcome health issues while reframing the cannabis conversation.

Hotel highs

Hotels are getting in on the action too. Pillow menus and in-room yoga sessions are officially old news. The latest way hotels are helping their guests chill out can be found on room service menus.

Located on New York’s prestigious Madison Avenue, 4-star hotel The James NoMad has a room service menu filled with dishes infused with CBD, the cannabis compound purported to ease pain and promote a sense of calm.

Curated by Andrea Drummer (chef and co-owner of Los Angeles-based cannabis cuisine catering company Elevation VIP Co-op), the room service menu features CBD-spiked bites such as spicy meatballs with pine nuts and parmigiana, and an ice-cream sundae loaded with caramel sauce.

Travel can be stressful. But spending the night chilling in your hotel room is easier than ever before with cannabis eats delivered to your door.


Distillation Nation

When prohibition was introduced in the US, it sent New York’s rich distilling tradition underground. Now, that spirit has returned as craft distilleries ramp up production across the Big Apple.


It was legislation – the Volstead Act that created Prohibition in 1920 – that put an end to the majority of commercial distilleries in New York, the state where the nation’s first distillery was founded in 1640. So, it’s fitting that legislation has also brought New York’s distilling legacy back to life. In an effort to encourage state agriculture by letting farmers and their direct customers distill locally-grown grain, law has given rise to a distilling renaissance at the forefront of the international craft spirit scene.

In many ways this revival can be attributed to Ralph Erenzo who, in 2003, founded Tuthilltown Spirits, transforming an old grain mill in Gardiner into one of the first boutique farm distilleries in New York state. While a standard commercial distilling licence costs upwards of $65,000 per year, Erenzo had discovered a law on the books since the year 2000 that made licensing significantly cheaper for locally-focused, small-scale distilleries. He became a vocal advocate for what would eventually be the Farm Distillery Act of 2007, which made distillation officially considered “farm use,” according to Heather D. Holland, author of Discovering the New York Craft Spirits Boom. The law made the distillation business vastly more accessible and gave rise to a new generation of would-be moonshiners.

Not only has the law benefited the state agricultural industry, but it’s provided a playground for the palates of the curious and over 70 distilleries have taken form, including Tuthilltown Spirits, Warwick Valley Winery &

“They created a mutually beneficial business environment for distilleries and farmers,” says Allen Katz, founder of Brooklyn-based New York Distilling Company, a market leader in the state’s emerging craft spirits industry. Under the law, distillers must source 75 percent of their grain from farms located in New York state, making the resulting craft liquors ‘local’ in every sense. New York Distilling Company, for example, sources its primary grains from the Pedersen Family Farm in the Fingerlakes, according to Katz, who credits the farm with helping to “identify and cultivate unique varieties of rye that have had a great impact on our finished whiskey.”

However, while the grains and the stills are firmly planted in New York soil, many of the traditional spirit styles of the pre-Prohibition era have been lost, only to be replaced with a blank slate for invigorated newcomers.

Colin Spoelman, co-founder and head distiller of Kings County Distillery, based in the old Brooklyn Navy Yard, originally comes from a place with a very welldocumented whiskey tradition – Kentucky. However, it was only after moving to New York City, where Spoelman cites the “adventurous, foodie culture” that eventually stoked his own interest in distillation, that he began to explore his home state’s whiskey traditions.

Distillery, Finger Lakes Distilling, Brooklyn’s New York Distilling Company, and Industry City Distillery.

“It was a category that had grown a little stale,” Spoelman says of bourbon prior to the craft boom. “There was great whiskey coming out of Kentucky, but not a lot of differentiation. It’s been the same stuff, produced by the same distilleries, for a long time.” The lack of a well-known liquor tradition in New York, combined with the craft movement’s eagerness to experiment, provided an open playing field for Spoelman and his contemporaries.

“Because New York doesn’t have a very welldocumented tradition of distilling, we can embrace the fact that this is a melting pot city and borrow from different traditions,” says Spoelman. Kings County mixes equipment, ingredients, and techniques to create whiskeys unlike those already found in liquor stores. They use pot stills, for example, which are more commonly used in the production of scotch whisky than bourbon. The distillery also makes an American gin, a unique Rock & Rye, rye whisky spiked with rock sugar, sour cherries and cinnamon; and Navy Strength Perry’s Tot, a high-proof gin laced with nine botanicals, including juniper, coriander, star anise, and green cardamom. “It’s a classic spirit that was nearly forgotten,” says Katz, who serves their house spirits at the Shanty Bay, which is adjacent to the Williamsburg distillery.

Over on the vodka front, the visionaries behind Industry City Distillery – also in Brooklyn – focus their innovation on sustainability, making a world-class vodka while

being three times more energy efficient and six times more water efficient than their competitors. The distillery, which was built from scratch by its founders, has made a name for itself with Technical Reserve, a spirit that’s bottled at 96.5% ABV and which has become the hottest ingredient for New York’s leading cocktail divans. This heady spirit is not for drinking straight, obviously, but if you find yourself at one of their rooftop parties, you might get to try a signature libation laced with this pure rocket fuel, which is intended to be used to make bitters, infusions and tinctures.

The distilling renaissance has opened the door for plenty of would-be spirit geeks to try their hand at curious drams that would otherwise have been commercially unrealistic. New York Distilling has its aged New Netherlands Gin; King County uses cocoa husks from nearby Mast Brothers Chocolate to make its chocolate whiskey; Astoria Distilling Company in Queens makes an Old Tom gin that’s akin to popular styles before Prohibition; Taconic in Hudson Valley makes a Dutchess Private Reserve bourbon; and Port Marris Distillery in the Bronx specialises in pitorro, a heady Puerto Rican moonshine.

“It shouldn’t all taste the same,” says Spoelman. “That’s the fault of the industry for perpetuating homogeneous products for a long time. Whether you come to it from a foodie place, a science place, a history place, or an art place, there are definitely a lot of ways to appreciate the new movement and to find something to like.” Salute.


The Robusto: A Modern Classic

The classic robusto-sized cigar, which measures five inches or 127mm in length by 50 ring gauge, may not share the historical fame of sizes such as the Churchill (seven inches x 47 ring gauge), named after one of Britain’s most illustrious leaders, or the Lonsdale (6 ½ inches x 44 ring gauge), named for Hugh Cecil Lowther, 5th Earl of Lonsdale, but it remains a size that both cigar manufacturers and consumers regularly seek out. Historically, there have been robusto-sized cigars on the market since the 1930s. However, the term “robusto” didn’t enter the modern cigar lexicon until 1989, when Cuba launched the Cohiba Robusto as a cigar name. This was the first time a factory name for a “vitola”, a term used to describe a cigar’s shape and size, also became its market name.

Co-owner of boutique cigar company RoMa Craft Tobac, Skip Martin, fondly recalls the first robusto – a Cohiba Robusto – he enjoyed in the 1990s. The vitola is Martin’s favorite size to make and is one that he will almost always reach for when trying a new blend. “The reason why manufacturers like the size is simple: they sell very well,” says Martin. “From a blending perspective, it is big enough to hold a fairly complex blend of four different whole filler leaves without having to worry too much about the complications that come with making thinner cigars like lanceros, panatelas, and lonsdales.”

Darius Namdar, the current Habano Sommelier champion, names the Hoyo De Monterrey Epicure No. 2 and Partagas Serie D. No. 4 as classic Cuban robustos that amateurs and aficionados should seek. “I really love how complex the Epicure No. 2 is, but if I could only choose one robusto to ever enjoy again it would be the Ramon Allones Specially Selected,” says Namdar. “The robusto attracts people because it gives the freedom to enjoy the full length of the cigar without too much time pressure, but also because it is now such a familiar dimension. Comfort is so heavily influenced by familiarity, and so choosing such a popular dimension also adds comfort to the smoker.”

robusto is popular with smokers and manufacturers because it is the perfect size for trying a new blend,” says Kevin Newman of El Artista Cigars. “The vitola offers a good ratio of wrapper to binder to filler and gives a real sense of what the tobacco blender intended when creating the blend.” Australian cigar retailer Trent Firmin

With an immediately identifiable profile, the iconic robusto cigar holds its own as a modern classic produced by almost all cigar makers. Sought by aficionados around the globe, its dimensions are also the inspiration behind Astleys’ Atlantic vape device. By Samuel Spurr
The robusto embodies what a cigar should be in most people’s eyes

RoMa Craft Tobac’s Wunder|Lust robusto is one of the company’s more popular classic robusto sizes.

identifies the Warped Cigars Serie Gran Reserva 1988, Illusione Cigars 88 Natural, and Leaf by Oscar Corojo Robusto as some of the most popular robustos among his customers. “The robusto embodies what a cigar should be in most people’s eyes,” says Firmin. “It’s not too long, offering a perfect amount of time for relaxation and pleasure, and its girth is ideal too, being not too small to burn hot.”

These perfect dimensions have not only made the robusto the ideal “go to” cigar size in the western world since the early 2000s but have created an iconic shape that resonates from the cigar sphere into the vape world with the Atlantic, Astleys’ infinitelyelegant, robusto-inspired cannabis vape device. The same dimensions that make the robusto such an easy selection lend themselves to the Atlantic, which fits perfectly in the hand, rolls between the fingers, and slips into a jacket pocket seamlessly.

“The robusto was the obvious choice for Astleys as the Atlantic is, in many ways, the extension of this heritage, it’s a luxury statement, a consummate companion, crafted for today’s modern consumer,” says Astleys’ creative director Fred Kirby. The Atlantic is core to Astleys’ initial launch range of luxury cannabis vape devices.

El Artista Cigars offers robustos across its Cimarron, Pulita 60th Aniversario, Puro Ambar, Exactus, and Got Your Six brands.


CBD: Nature’s Boon or Boondoggle?

Cannabis has been used for its medicinal purposes for centuries. Now, at the forefront of its renaissance is one cannabis component that the wellness industry has high hopes for, discovers Tom Bentley.


Miracle cures have been around for generations. There were 19th century promotions of over-the-counter cocaine tablets for toothache, and heroin prescribed for coughs. Doctors appeared on cigarette ads from the 1930s through the 1950s, promoting reduced throat irritation from smoking, and now CBD, a non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in the cannabis plant, is having a moment in the therapeutic spotlight - a moment that looks like it will be here to stay.

Though the claims can sound like one of those old carnival snake oil salesmen peddling a tonic that cures gout, amnesia and liver disease in one fell swoop, evidence is steadily mounting that CBD’s therapeutic effects are considerable. Men, particularly those who work out vigorously, might find speedier recovery times, and for the sleepless and the anxious, there’s much promise there too. CBD is also being used to aid pain release, combat seizures and ease the symptoms of PTSD.

CBD (technically, cannabidiol) products span a splendid range, with the component laced into everything from cakes, chocolates and cookies to oils and creams, where it’s legal to do so, which means Canada and an ever-increasing raft of countries in Europe, including the United Kingdom, Spain and Denmark. In the US, CBD is illegal federally, and its legality in each state depends on whether it’s made from hemp or marijuana. However, the tide is turning as states re-examine their stances.

A 2017 report from the National Academies Press stated that “in adults with chronic pain, patients who were treated with cannabis or cannabinoids are more likely to experience a clinically significant reduction in pain symptoms,” and a survey of thousands of CBD users at HelloMD, the online community that brings together doctors and cannabis patients, found that almost half of people who used CBD products stopped taking traditional medicines.

Dr. Stuart Titus, PhD, the president and CEO of Medical Marijuana, Inc. says, “I cannot say that CBD works for 100 percent of the people 100 percent of the time, but many have reported that they are being helped. There are certain pain receptor sites in the human body that are very accepting of cannabinoids. About 50mgs of CBD daily seems to support this endogenous cannabinoid system.”

Kelly Stoll, co-founder of Vital Body Therapeutics in Santa Cruz, CA, and a manufacturer of CBD creams, says CBD massages have equal benefit for men and women: “The positive feedback from a CBD massage is equal across the board – both men and women report a diminishment of pain and inflammation, as well as a profound sense of relaxation and even an improvement in the quality of their sleep. We suspect this is because CB1 and CB2 receptors, the molecules that bind to CBD and trigger the healing response in the body, are similarly prevalent in both men and women.”

Manufacturers have jumped into the market in big ways, from glutenfree CBD and melatonin gummy candies that become part of your daily supplement routine, and anti-inflammatory creams for aching feet to the likes of Care by Design’s marijuana-derived - rather than hemp - CBD sub-lingual spray (which I regularly use), and Kana’s lavender-scented night mask. There are vape pens by Bloom Farms and CBD chocolates by Kiva Confections and today’s savvy consumer can opt for bottled water, hand-made bath bombs and even singleestate coffee laced with the cannabis cure-all.

As for effects most relevant to men, some NFL players are touting CDB products for pain relief after games, and I’ve seen men’s “anti-aging and anti-inflammatory” CBD skin serums hitting market shelves. There are even some allegedly libido-boosting CBD applications. However, that last one sounds like it’s moving back towards the snake-oil salesmen, who just might be out of business.

Dr. Titus also mentions that CBD products are being used to replace opioids and show strong promise in reducing the frequency of children’s epileptic seizures, which has led the FDA to license a CBDbased anti-seizure drug.

Porsche’s New Pocket Rocket

When Porsche’s new entry level sports car rolled off the delivery vehicle, I was taken aback by its striking colour - Miami Blue. Its silhouette, still very recognizably Cayman, is now more refined than its voluptuous forerunner. Just sitting on my driveway it looks fast, with a sharper nose, a corseted waist and a few other tweaks - LED lights, a rear spoiler, new bumpers, large air intakes, and a sweatband-like accent strip across its rear. This, I thought, is the best-looking Cayman yet, one that just oozes Porsche’s esteemed build quality. But then I started it.

The new 718 Cayman S has gone four-cylinder turbocharged. It may well be more powerful than its 6-cylinder predecessor, but the sound is not that of a recognisable Porsche product – it is that different. In outright volume, which there is plenty of, it’s clattery and industrial-sounding, reminiscent of an old Harley Davidson.

I took the 718 S for a long post-midnight drive from Manchester to the Romney Marsh. On the motorway, it performs beautifully, with a stern hold on the road. The major changes are to the Cayman’s engine, where Porsche engineers have installed the Cayman’s first-ever flat-four – a 345bhp, 2.5-litre turbocharged engine that’s more powerful and quicker than the six-cylinder Cayman GT4. Even with the additional 35kg turbocharger, this stick shift reaches 62mph in 4.6 seconds, and tops at 177mph.

The driving position is terrific and feels wonderfully low-slung without significantly diminishing visibility, and the controls are just where you want them. I love the way the gear box holds onto second gear, only requiring a change at 70mph, and third gear needing an upshift into fourth at 110mph. In its normal setting, the 718 S is quiet, not too jarring and all-round pleasant.

Cindy-Lou Dale has mixed feelings about the new Porsche 718 Cayman S. She hits the rural roads of England to put the little snapper through its paces.

The 718 Cayman S is cheaper to tax and more economical than its six-cylinder big brother. Hard driving has it down to 17.7mpg, and near 30mpg on a long, steady cruise. In real terms, my 280-mile journey, which involved some daunting speeds and tights bends, took the fuel gauge just one click below half a tank! Dial the switch to Sport mode (which engages the sport pipes) and the steering becomes heavier, with the throttle response sharpening up.

However, the real fun happens in Sport Plus. Take all you get in Sport mode, throw in a more sports-oriented ride (like taking out traction control) and the 718 Cayman S feels like a proper sports car - direct, tight, fast, fun, with phenomenal steering feedback. There’s no turbo-lag to speak of and acceleration is forceful, with a punchy turbo delivery above 2,500 revs, throwing in a full whack of thrust.

There is something visceral about driving a stick shift, making you feel part of the whole package, which is why I took the 718 S off the motorway, heading to the wild and woolly countryside of England. Here, this pocket rocket came into its own as I barrelled it into bends at breakneck speeds, which it just shrugged off with grace and agility – the Porsche loved it!

Okay, enough about the driving and handling, let me tell you about what is inside. The two-seater cockpit

has been given a small going-over, with the biggest change being the new 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system and a 918-inspired steering wheel (there is no auto-off handbrake – it has an electronic handbrake that releases automatically when the seatbelt is fastened). Storage is tight, with both the trunk and frunk having just about enough space for a soft overnight bag in each compartment.

Aside from cosmetic tweaks on the outside and a redesigned interior, things have been tightened up and revised - wider back wheels, upgraded brakes; a redesigned chassis.

In several ways, the four-cylinder Cayman is better than what has gone before it, but this isn’t enough to compensate for the deficiencies of the engine. Sitting in the cockpit it may initially feel less upmarket, less sophisticated than it did before, cheap even, which of course it isn’t. The 718 S starts at US$62,600 - my test vehicle weighed in at just south of US$80,000 with a heap of options one might otherwise find as standard. To my mind that’s a lot for a sports car with a four-cylinder turbo engine.

So, there is no wholesale dismissal of the 718 S. This is Porsche’s Go-Kart – on steroids. You’ll become accustomed to the way it sounds. I know I did, and dare I say, I was starting to like it.

There is something visceral about driving a stick shift, making you feel part of the whole package, which is why I took the 718 S off the motorway, heading to the wild and woolly countryside of England.

City of Change

So it is with Moscow, the latest book by Serbian photographer Boogie, who delves beneath the often gritty surface of the Russian capital to find a warmth and defiance that sets the city apart. An urban, industrial, yet heart-wrenchingly humane new collection, in Moscow the Brooklynbased photographer captures a refreshingly bold and often brutal take on the city, one that’s filled with passion, tragedy, and pride, and which illustrates a metropolis that’s mid leap between eras.

"The first time I visited Moscow, I felt like I had found my tribe. A big, powerful, lost tribe,” says Boogie, whose previous works include It's All Good (powerHouse Books, 2006), Boogie (powerHouse Books, 2007), Sao Paulo (Upper Playground, 2008), Istanbul (Upper Playground, 2008), and Belgrade Belongs to Me (powerHouse Books, 2009). “Us Serbs always regarded Russians as our Orthodox Christian brothers; our historical friends and protectors. When you first meet them, Russians are very cold and reserved. But when they get to know you, they will give you everything.”

‘Raw’ is a term that is perhaps overused, but Boogie's photos truly assault the senses. The photographer's arresting gaze is directly returned by his subjects, and an undeniable rapport and intimacy is felt by the viewer. Despite the anguish and communion of his telling images, in Moscow, Boogie delivers something crucially human, with images that dare you to look away.

“Russians are very strong: walking around Moscow, you see 50, 60, 70-year old people who could rip your head off!” recalls Boogie. “When I'm in a foreign city, I shoot like a madman. I walk and shoot 15 hours a day. Moscow is huge; it's very hard to cover photographically. It's hard to do it justice. I think, with this book, I only scratched the surface."

Capturing the essence of a dynamic, often misunderstood city like Moscow takes a particular talent and determination, but with such an approach can come images that chill, inspire and invigorate.

From prison to profit: a narc prosecutor’s journey into the global cannabis industry.

Ispent the early part of my legal career on the front lines of Richard Nixon’s War on Drugs. I was fourteen when Ronald Reagan was first elected President and was smitten by his swagger. Yes, I was one of those kids who grew up in a Nancy Reagan “Just Say No" kind of childhood in middle class America (I even have one of her t-shirts). Never did drugs and never dated girls who did— as I recall. I was a true believer, just like President Reagan was. I went on to serve my country as a United States Marine, prosecuting marijuana drug runners in Southern California before signing up to run a DEA Drug Task Force as a Task Force Commander. I sent many young men to prison for their illicit business interests in what we were told was the “Devil’s weed.”

Reagan helped guide me through the transition from law enforcement to giving legal assistance to some of the top cannabis companies in the world, by his use of a by his use of

regulations towards profitable businesses. My clients make millions of dollars profiting in an industry I once would have sent them to prison for.

I would like to say that I have seen it all when it comes to the $150 billion cannabis marketplace. And yes, you read correctly, according to a new report by Grand View Research, Inc., cannabis is expected to be a one hundred and fifty billion dollar industry by 2025.

The green rush is on and here to stay. If you are not yet in the industry, some say it is already too late. I’m not one of them, but I do advise that if you are looking to profit from the green rush, remember what Ronnie was famous for saying: trust but verify.

There are some real shady characters out there—that is the

a well-known Russian proverb - Doveryai, no proveryai - trust but verify. He adopted this phrase at the signing of a nuclear arms treaty with the Soviet Union. Was Reagan reluctant to begin pulling our troops out of the Soviet Union in the late 1980s? I could only imagine so. But that’s where the trust came in… both countries had something to gain, but everything to lose. And what resulted? The Fall of the Soviet Union.

I have witnessed first-hand the promising world of weed and the prosperity cannabis induced for Colorado. I have watched CBD and hemp markets bring in new tax revenues on a scale never before seen. I have learned of real medicines being discovered and tested in hospitals and universities with actual, positive, clinical results. Hurting veterans are finding legitimate relief for their PTSD from a plant that has been prescribed by doctors for over 3,000 years. Big weed earned my trust.

So, I tossed my badge, gun and gear to the side (I kept my Colorado DEA cowboy hat, of course) and began speaking all over the globe on the ever-evolving world of cannabis and hemp and guiding my law firm’s clients through the maze of

verify part. Beware of valuations and businesses that promise what we all know are impossible to deliver.

Watch out for the penny stock predators and the snake oil cultivators and extractors. Be wary of evangelical Canadian business valuations that will lead straight to Hades. Think twice of the unicorns that claim to have a secret sauce or a way to water plants that no one in the history of mankind has thought of, and seriously evaluate partnering with those who operated in the former black market of the cannabis world. The need to verify everything in this industry is a must, and it is important to surround yourself with an experienced, professional team.

Regardless of your own personal beliefs, in my opinion, cannabis is a viable industry. I see marijuana today much like asking someone what their personal beliefs are toward red wine, coffee or aspirin. Sure, some folks don’t consume any of them for a wide variety of reasons, but no longer is the debate a personal attack on one’s morality.

Weed is here to stay. Trust but verify.

I have witnessed first-hand the promising world of weed and the prosperity cannabis induced for Colorado.
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