VAMP : Issue 3

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DESIGN New York Issue

Necklace & Ring by Classic Jewellers



Valletta, St Julians, 2122 1982 Be inspired at








Following in the footsteps of the Dutch in the 17th century we travel – after the last issue – from Amsterdam to New York (then named ‘New Amsterdam’ of course). My only time in New York, so far, was in October 2007. The sun was shining and the exchange rate of the Maltese liri to the dollar meant a shopping spree was inevitable. Going in to a shopping mall meant that you would be soon met by a smiling shop assistant making out that they are your best friend and that they have never had a bad day in their lives – which is just chalk-board irritating – but when you get past that, the choice to spoil yourself rotten is at your fingertips. Museums, theatre, restaurants, Central Park – these are only a few things that can keep you busy while you visit New York for any length of time. One thing you may not do is meet a garden community in the middle of the city, an interior designer or an artist. So, we’ve brought them to you in this issue. I would like to thank Paul Ochs of Ochs Design in New York, for sharing his stories and talent with us, just in the nick of time; David Schembri for his quick on-the-pulse enthusiasm and for always supported my editing requests – handling them with consummate ease and genuine interest even while he’s undoubtedly busy enough at Durham University; and all the other contributers for their unwavering energy and enthusiasm. I have been an editor for quite some time now and yet the job remains extraordinary. I can truly say that I feel so privileged to be part of something that requires such a personal contribution of ideas and action and that brings out all sorts of new topics of interest and conversation. So to save you from any further rambling of mine, I welcome you to the the New York issue. I hope you have a special Christmas and New Year with the your loved ones – or at least with the things that you love doing and the simple pleasures of life. A new year approaches, which can possibly eradicate the old and stagnant with the new and enriching.

Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission from the publisher is prohibited. All rights reserved. Dates, information and prices are believed to be correct at the time of going to press but are subject to change and no responsibility is accepted for any errors or omissions. Neither the editor nor the publisher accept responsibility for any material submitted, whether photographic or otherwise. While we endeavour to ensure that the organisations and firms mentioned are reputable. The editor can give no guarantee that they will fulfill their obligations under all circumstances. © Copyright 2011

Join VAMP group on

Editor Lily Agius

Magazine Coordinator Samantha Psaila

Art Director Chris Psaila

Contributers Bart Saive Chantal Busuttil David Schembri Dr. Joanna Delia Luke Engerer Nicola Powell Nicole Cuschieri Norbert Francis Attard Paul Ochs

Design Chris Psaila Nicholas Cutajar Lab Communications 9985 9606 Photography Kris Micallef Luke Engerer Lab Communications

Printers Progress Press

Sales & Marketing Director Marc Urpani 9985 9606 NYC ISSUE


By: Alexander Charriol - NYC



Peter Joseph’s vision of a world of peace, equality, freedom, and honesty


An Artist’s Loft in Brooklyn




VAMP FASHION: naturally vibe’in’

in>side 38. A LOT...of possibilities

A garden art project in the heart of NYC


Travel story in New York City


From New York, Malta and elsewere


Interview with a talented local band


A selection of Christmas recipes by Chef Bart Saive


Interview with UK tattoo artist Guy Lee




SOMETHING TO SMILE ABOUT Get 50% off the Oral B Professional Care 500 Power Toothbrush this Christmas! The toothbrush is gentle on the teeth and gums and whitens the teeth by removing surface stains such as coffee and tobacco. The timer helps to further enhance the brushing experience of the recommended two-minute brush.

JBL OnBeat Xtreme THE DOCKS THAT ROCK HARDER Now you can enjoy the freedom to take your music anywhere and still enjoy the professional sound long associated with JBL speakers. The JBL OnBeat Xtreme docking station frees you from wires and its RF remote puts you in full control from anywhere nearby. The JBL OnBeat Xtreme dock is compatible with your computer and iPad, iPod and iPhone devices, guaranteeing spectacular wireless playback of your music library and with an optional composite cable, it can send video to your TV for all your friends to enjoy. For more information contact Ultimate, Bisazza Street, Sliema, Tel. 2131 8941, or Vjal ir-Rihan, San Gwann, Tel. 2137 2663 or visit

Check out the ICE-Watch latest collections Want to make a statement? Want to leave an impression? The latest collections from ICE do just that. ICE introduces the sporty Chrono Matt. This big bold chronograph watch from Ice in black, white, blue and bold fluorescent orange is the answer. With a 24-hour dial and date display the tough polycarbonate casing attaches via a matching leather strap. To really stand out in the dark, ICE introduces ICE Glow, the new watch that glows in the dark. Available exclusively at the ICE-Watch store in Bisazza Street Sliema or Hebe, Republic Street Valletta

The unique pressure sensor alerts you when brushing gets too hard. Oral-B Power toothbrushes help users reach long-term oral health goals. They offer the best quality as well as the best range of products to give patients an improved brushing experience, gently cupping each individual tooth for the ultimate clean. This further encourages users as they can see the results of their efforts. Oral-B Power toothbrushes give a fantastic smooth clean feeling every time you brush. For local trade enquiries, call VJ Salomone (Marketing) on 8007 2387

Italian Fashion Brand Harmont & Blaine Now In Malta To all those who are seriously into the world of Italian fashion, Harmont & Blaine will instantly prompt the interest radar. Unique in character, design and quality, this Italian brand shows off its Mediterranean identity through the use of a daring mix of colours. Harmont & Blaine is now open at The Piazza, TignĂŠ Point, with an appeal to all those men and women who are looking for a subtle and refined, yet soft and easy-going look. Visit Harmont & Blaine at The Point to view the first autumn/winter collections for men, women and children.




Vodka with a difference Why not mix something different with your vodka? Pour one measure of vodka over some ice in a tall glass and top up with the unique and bittersweet taste of Kinnie. For more ideas on how to use Kinnie as a mixer visit

Broadway Musicals at the Eden Cinemas! Architectural Heritage 2011 Awards Din l-Art Helwa, Malta’s heritage watchdog, have recently awarded their annual Awards for Architectural Heritage 2011. The two awards, in the Rehabilitation and Re-use category, were awarded to Architect Aaron Abela for his conversion of Villa Aspinal in Tarxien into offices, and to Chris Briffa Architects, for their rehabilitation of Valletta’s public conveniences. The recently completed Strait Street convenience (above), is the first of five in the city; a project spearheaded by the Valletta Local Council and awaiting EU funding for its execution.

Cisk Is...The Time to Cheer With Your Beer For the third year running, Simonds Farsons Cisk plc has launched a new limited edition fridge pack for Cisk Lager 33cl cans just in time for the festive season. This year’s design brings a completely new dimension to the Cisk brand, combining a striking seasonal design with the latest in packaging technology using a ‘holographiceffect’ cardboard. The end result is in keeping with the brand’s core elements and will surely be noticed on the supermarket shelves. This limited edition pack also rewards Cisk consumers for their loyal custom throughout the year by offering one free can within the 8-pack. It is available while stocks last from leading supermarkets and stores across Malta and Gozo. Enjoy responsibly.

The lights are bright on Broadway, and part of it will be cast on St. Julian’s in the coming months, as four of Broadway’s top theatrical shows grace Eden Cinemas with exclusive screenings. Thanks to Broadway Worldwide and Supervision Media, audiences across the globe are able to experience Broadway in the truest way possible - outside the neon lit streets and theatre house itself – with breathtaking sets, glamorous costumes, non-stop energy and much, much more! Eden Cinemas are proud to announce the schedule for the exclusive screenings set to hit the movie theatres starting January 2012, which include: Smokey Joe’s Cafe – Thursday, 26 January Jekyll & Hyde –Thursday, 1 March Putting it Together – Thursday, 5 April Memphis – Friday, 4 May Tickets for each event are priced at €10 for adults and €7 for children.

NEW LIMITED EDITION JUNCTION ENERGY DRINKS Junction of The Plaza, Sliema and The Savoy, Valletta have produced a limited edition ‘Junction Energy Drink‘ in-conjunction with a well known European energy drink producer. These 250ml canisters are being given free to clients with every purchase from Junction retail outlets this Christmas.



For more information visit To purchase tickets log on to:

NOW OPEN Harmont & Blaine, The Piazza, TignĂŠ Point. T: 2060 1199

A VISION FOR OUR FUTURE! Plato had ‘The Republic’, Thomas More had his ‘Utopia’ Will Jacques Fresco’s high-minded ideals ever make his castles in the air touch the ground? DAVID SCHEMBRI takes a look at the Venus Project. Words: David Schembri


hile you might – and should – have heard of these works describing an ideal society, or at least the authors behind them, you will be forgiven if Jacques Fresco or his Venus Project do not ring a bell. Fresco, a self-taught structural designer and futurist, has been described as a “a living legend” and “perhaps the most outstanding thinker of our times” by Elliott Maynard, the founder of an American institute keen on UFOs and extraterrestrial activity. One might also be forgiven, then, for thinking that this idea is perhaps, well, a bit off the beaten track. Which is precisely what Fresco seems to have set out to do. His vision of the future is comprised of a technology-driven landscape of mostly round buildings that can



only be described as futuristic – think The Jetsons – where humans would not have to work, as robots would be doing all of that for us, and where properly shared resources would ensure that poverty is eradicated. The problem with society, Fresco argues, is that while science and industry has moved to better ways of working and solving their problems, there has been no rethink of the way people go about their affairs. For this futurist, money is at the root of all evil. “In today’s culture of profit, we do not produce goods based on human need. We do not build houses based on population needs. We do not grow food to feed people. Industry’s major motivation is profit,” Fresco writes. “The monetary system is now an impediment to survival rather than a means

of facilitating individual existence and growth. This imaginary tool has outlived its usefulness.” Fresco argues there are enough resources in the world for everyone, but that the monetary system, which engenders inequality, does not allow these resources to be shared equitably between people. “Many people, publications and multi-media presentations portray various aspects of the future and paint spectacular pictures of the developments to come in such areas as transportation, housing and medicine but ignore the fact that in a monetarybased economy, the full benefits of these developments continue to be available to a relative few. “The few think tanks devoted to brainstorming newer approaches to bring



SURVIVAL RATHER THAN A MEANS OF FACILITATING INDIVIDUAL EXISTENCE AND GROWTH << social organisation up to speed with today’s technological capabilities do not deal with social change as a global systems plan.” Part of this vision would apparently entail futuristic housing – erected by robots – in reclaimed areas of the world, as overpopulation would require arable land being utilised as much as possible. In the 25-acre research and design centre in Venus, Florida, this future is taking shape. Here, Fresco and his team have constructed nine experimental buildings and are working on new designs and technologies. Of late, forces such as the Occupy movement are questioning the current economic model, and people are becoming increasingly aware of how unequal the world

is. Of late, concern for the environment is making its way into mainstream thought, and alternative sources of energy are gaining steam. But the fundamental problems Fresco outlines are still there. In an essay placed on the Venus Project website, the 85-year-old criticises previous Utopic literature for not being practicable. “Most of the early visions of a better world did not allow for changes in either technology or human values, tending to arrest innovative efforts. Additionally, all have lacked a comprehensive set of blueprints, models and a methodology for implementation. Finally, they lacked competent individuals to bring about such a transition,” the designer writes. >> NYC ISSUE



3D Renderings of the New City - SkyscraperCity

Keen not to fall prey to his own criticism, the Venus Project has its work set out in three phases. Phase one, which is already underway, saw Fresco and his associate Roxanne Meadows completing the construction of the research centre, and “videos, CDs, posters, pamphlets, models, renderings and books such as The Best That Money Can’t Buy: Beyond Politics, Poverty, & War, have been created to help raise awareness about the project”. The second phase in this grand project is a film. Yes, a “full-length feature film that will depict how a world embracing the proposals advanced by The Venus Project would work” is what the Venus Project envisages as its second step towards a new world order. Unsurprisingly, the film would provide a “positive vision of a peaceful society in which all human beings form a global family on planet Earth,” a film that has been “designed” to be “an entertaining and 014


educational experience for both adults and children”. With just the blueprints in place, the project is trying to raise funds to get this off the ground and straight into the future. The third phase is an experimental research city that would be devoted to working towards the aims and goals of the Venus Project, which include “realising the declaration of the world’s resources as being the common heritage of all people”, “transcend the artificial boundaries that currently and arbitrarily separate people” and “reclaiming and restoring the natural environment to the best of our ability”. Stabilising the world’s population “through education and voluntary birth control” is also a priority for the project, as is “redesigning cities, transportation systems, agricultural industries and industrial plants so that they are energy efficient, clean, and able to

conveniently serve the needs of all people”. Outgrowing nationalism and bigotry, eliminating elitism of any sort and outgrowing corporate entities and governments are also priorities for this new world. There is, however, something which is getting in the way of this project taking off the ground. It is spelt out succinctly by the familiar PayPal button on the website, reading “donate”. V

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Interior Designer Paul Ochs founded Ochs Design in 1989. He talks us through one of his first projects – a loft conversion for an artist in Brooklyn – that inspired his philosophy on design and the business >>




hen my client, Osvaldo Gomariz, first found this space in Brooklyn, New York in 1990, pigeons were flying in and out: skylight and window glass had long disappeared through neglect. It was an abandoned industrial building in Williamsburg, a then forgotten part of Brooklyn. Built originally as the home of the American Beverage Company in 1860, this Berry Street building’s last known industrial use, decades earlier, was for tanning leather, hence the asphalt floor. Gomariz, born in Argentina, came to New York by way of Spain on a Guggenheim fellowship to study painting in the 1970s. These are all his paintings throughout the

loft. By 1990, artist communities such as SoHo became prohibitively expensive places for artists to live and/or work. Gomariz led the way to Williamsburg for many as he took the top three floors of this building to create a throng of art studios for rent, keeping half of the top floor for his home and studio. In recent years, Williamsburg’s streets, countless clubs, trendy shops and cafés have been teeming with artists, musicians, students and young New Yorkers seeking an “alternative scene”. But the area was practically a ghost town when we first started working on this loft. I met Osvaldo when he ran a performance art space, essentially as a squatter, in an abandoned service station in Manhattan’s

East Village, another area known for its “alternative scene”. By day, this former service station and garage for car repairs functioned as a metal sculpting studio for several sculptors including Linus Corragio, the creator of the ‘Guitar Chair’. The budget for the project was almost non-existent. Over the course of a couple of years, Osvaldo kept bartering his paintings with everyone he knew who could supply windows, a stove and wood for the raised platforms intended to clearly define living areas as distinct from the painting studio. The ottomans were upholstered with better sections of a damaged oriental rug discarded by my family. >>









The worktable in the studio was made up of mostly salvaged timber and bluestone slabs found on site. One of his service station metal sculpting tenants created the steel frame for it. Osvaldo was a phenomenal cook and taught me with excruciating precision how to make the best paella I have ever had. The many dinners around that long table were epic. Collectors, gallery owners, surgeons, singers, dancers and Buddhist monks were typical guests. In winter, a heavy coat was necessary indoors but everyone still came to view the latest paintings and to dine well. I remember visiting RÎo Tercero, Osvaldo’s home town in Argentina. He knew from

an early age that he needed to leave the area. He said the relentless unobstructed winds haunted him. When he told me that he wanted no interior walls in the loft, only the platforms to differentiate between spaces, I asked him to let me experiment with a soft bedroom enclosure. He was sceptical, holding on tightly to his desire for visual openness, but thanked me profusely afterwards. He later admitted the openness of the loft, like Rio Tercero, had begun to haunt him, interfering with his sleep. Osvaldo was extremely passionate and outspoken as far as his likes and dislikes were concerned. He was quite specific about the materials he wanted or did not want in his surroundings. But bartering his

paintings with the few tradesmen in the neighbourhood at the time dictated who would ultimately build things. His praise of creative thought above all else meant I had a very free hand in the design, but very sharp criticism from Osvaldo and not as much say in the execution as I might have liked. Execution for this project was a serendipitous journey compared to how I find myself working these days. The bottom line: for him it was important that his home look like no other. I was not to rely on routine or glean anything from current fashion. The loft was to be a reflection of him, a reflection of me and of our relationship. >>




Osvaldo died unexpectedly soon after we were done with the project. This was probably one of my very first projects as an independent professional designer. I have worked steadily on my own for the last 22 years, largely due to his tutelage, his urging me not to work for others, not to succumb to commercial pressures and to honour my own creative voice. Maybe not surprisingly, despite having designed dozens and dozens of interiors, many who review my past projects are drawn to this early one as being something special. To my mind, it’s because Osvaldo was so very special. V




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VAMP suggests some awesome gadgets that should be at the top of everyone’s list this Christmas.

THE NEW MPMAN MP824 INTERNET TABLET This product is specially designed for nomadic use.
It offers direct access to the internet and its multimedia contents at any time on a large, high definition, 8-inch touch screen.
Its Wifi connection allows you to browse freely.
It comes with an Android 2.2 OS, 1 GHz with a 512 Mb cache memory which guarantees you fluidity and optimum responsiveness. The 4/3 large format is ideal for browsing the internet allowing to view your content in actual size. Available from Ultimate, Bisazza Street, Sliema, Tel. 2131 8941, or Vjal ir-Rihan, San Gwann, Tel. 2137 2663

HEADPHONES BY DR DRE When listening to music on Pro Beats for the first time, you can instantly tell that these are intended for professional use by musicians, producers or DJs who need high quality and durable headphones to use. For the average music listener, the Pro Beats might be a bit over the top, but the die-hard music buffs will absolutely love them.

1958 ARVIN RADIO IPOD DOC Enjoy all your music on this one-of-a-kind 1958 retro radio that is actually an iPod dock. This nifty device allows you to use the radio’s original volume controls when listening to music stored on your iPhone or iPod.

CARBON FIBRE IPHONE CASE This super strong case weighs just 7g, and features cut-outs for the screen, docking and headphones ports, side controls, camera and home button, which means the iPhone should never have to be removed from its protective cover. Thinly constructed yet ultra-durable, it measures just 119 x 64 x 15mm to ensure that only a few additional millimetres are added to the dimensions of the iPhone itself!

RAY-BAN AVIATOR FLIP OUT SHADES Inspired by classic Aviator sunglasses and the innovative materials of the Tech collection. The Aviator Flip Out comes with three interchangeable lenses, a frame case, and a special lens case to store the lenses you will wear tomorrow. Each kit has a rich primary colour lens, a fashionable gradient colour lens and a polarised lens to give you three Ray-Ban Aviators in one cool pair of sunglasses. Available from Optika, Sliema & St. Julians, Tel: 2133 5463

DISCOVER DJ Mix, scratch and play your tunes like a pro! This computer-DJ package is perfect for any music lover who has never tried DJing before. The DJ system harnesses the processing power of your Mac or PC and enables you to DJ anywhere, playing the music directly from your own music library. DISCOVER DJ consists of a slick DJ control surface with a convenient, standard USB connection and powerful MixVibes CROSS LE performance DJ software.
This software is a virtual extension of the DISCOVER DJ hardware, with two decks. Just load your tracks to either Deck A or Deck B, and then control it, cueing up the start point, performing advanced transitions and even scratching. Available from Ultimate, Bisazza Street, Sliema, Tel. 2131 8941, or Vjal ir-Rihan, San Gwann, Tel. 2137 2663 or visit V




Form is a family-run business with a 64-year tradition that started as a bedding specialist, progressed into a sofa-maker of repute and is now one of the leading home furnishers in Malta.


he company has grown from a one-man operation to one that employs 40 well-trained staff intent on making the customer’s shopping experience memorable. What started from a small shop in Rue D’Argens in Msida is now a sprawling complex in Valley Road, where Form displays furniture and furnishings from suppliers such as Natuzzi, Jesse, Zalf, Euromobil, Jab, Genevieve Lethuand and, last but not least, Dunlopillo, and also features a large selection of own brand products selected to suit different market segments and price points. Where is Form positioned? What is its corporate philosophy? Julian Galea, who has been working at Form for the last 12 years in sales and marketing, gave us his views. “To many people, Form appears to be pegged at the high end of the market but the reality is that Form lies in the middle – often referred

a sleek line in home and office furniture and Euromobil, which has been manufacturing kitchens since 1964, also operates in this segment and shares the same philosophy as Natuzzi – namely to offer good quality, well-designed products at a price that is within the reach of many. Success is measured by the many customers that have obtained their products over the years and are proud to own them. What distinguishes most of Form’s suppliers from the thousands of others is their commitment not only to the customer in terms of style, price, quality and their after sales service but also their commitment to society in terms of the environment and especially the backing they give to cultural events and sport. Very few can compare with the Euromobil Group on this score. Jesse is one of the most respected companies in Europe and the USA, every area of one’s home, and one can only conclude that the choices at Form are enormous and yet it is really quite easy to buy everything one needs at the price one sets out to spend by opting for selective buying based on priorities. Our staff is there to assist you up to the final stages with advice, professional sketches and home visits – even up to the last lamp or spoon.

to as the medium to high end of the market in international terms. This is borne out by the main brands that are featured at Form.



Add to all this the large selection of own-brand products at Form, with choices in every department for

Generally speaking, Form was and remains a furniture showcase that appeals to the home-starter as well as to the more mature customer and also to those wanting that exclusive suite or piece.

Our current slogan declares that Form is “where the aspirational is attainable” and a visit to us will confirm that, although everything appears to be at the high end, a closer examination of the design and quality of the products on display – and a close look at the bottom line – will show that, compared like for like, the products at Form are amazingly unbeatable and within the reach of most. Of course, Form also carries a collection of luxury goods – including exquisite tables by Gallotti & Radice, the most advanced door systems by Rimadesio, top

This is a paid advertorial

Natuzzi is recognised as the company that democratised leather sofa manufacture and is today the largest furniture manufacturer in Italy and the leading leather sofa manufacturer in the world, as well as being the only Italian furniture company quoted on the New York Stock Exchange. Zalf produces

due to its dynamic style and its appeal to design lovers. Jesse manages to balance high quality and design with a price that is comparatively lower than most and is considered the best overall in the medium to high segment. Its products do not come cheap, but they are tremendous value for the price.

end fabrics by JAB Anstoez and the Paola Navona designer sofa collection sold under the Pasquale Natuzzi banner.

Visit Form at Valley Road, Msida or at:


Creative Director: Luke Engerer Photography: Kris Micallef Styling: Luke Engerer Make-up: Nicola Powell Hair: Michelle Galea - Roots Hair Salon - 27454164 Model: Estelle from supernova



French Connection jacket - €193.00 French Connection shirt - €175.00 Massimo Dutti trousers - €79.95 French Connection shoes - €79.95


French Connection playsuit - €207.00 French Connection shoes - €163.00

Massimo Dutti jumpsuit - €99.95 Bata shoes - €85.00

Calvin Klein Leggings - €171.00 Maison Scotch @ Junction Top - €54.95 Guess Waist Coat - €77.00 Bata Boots - €85.00

French Connection Coat - €231.00 Calvin Klein Leggings - €171.00 Bata Boots - €85.00


Creative Director: Luke Engerer Photography: Kris Micallef Styling: Luke Engerer Make-up: Nicola Powell Hair: Michelle Galea - Roots Hair Salon - 27454164 Model: Joanna from

Guess dress - â‚Ź104.50 Tommy Hilfiger boots - â‚Ź229.90

Tommy Hilfiger jacket - €249.00 Massimo Dutti top - €79.95 Tommy Hilfiger trousers - €139.00 Tommy Hilfiger boots - €199.90

Tommy Hilfiger dress - €249.00 Massimo Dutti coat - €195.00 Tommy Hilfiger boots - €229.90

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Massimo Dutti dress - €69.95 Massimo Dutti jacket - €135.00 Hilfiger Denim boots - €229.90 NYC ISSUE


A LOT...OF POSSIBILITIES Words & Interview: Lily Aguis Photos: Norbert Francis Attard




ADAM & EVE According to Genesis, after succumbing to the Serpent’s temptation to eat from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, Eve tempted Adam with the fruit. With this came the fig leaf to cover their shame. God cast the couple out of the Garden of Eden for going against his will - and ever since, humans have had to work hard to live. Today, Attard notes, like those first “Stewards of the Earth” we continue to commit a grave sin by destroying nature.



altese contemporary artist NOBERT FRANCIS ATTARD participated in an art project for a community garden in the heart of New York, where he saw another side to this fast-paced city. Lily Agius met up with him to learn more about the project for which he created 15 sitespecific works. New York City is the most populated city in the United States. It symbolises financial power embellished with skyscrapers, offers 24-hour services and has nurtured some of the most influential personalities and companies in the world. It is where people dream of going to “make it”, to earn a living, or visit with the knowledge that they can most probably get what they want at the press of a button and a wallet full of cash. In the heart of this advanced city sit fences marking the boundaries of some 280 community gardens kept alive by a few city dwellers wanting to be in touch with nature while tending to their plot. They grow their own vegetables and flowers and, in turn, have created an impressive sense of community. This escape from the concrete world has forged friendships that are further enhanced by the fight to keep these little havens safe from the property developers. Artists from various countries, along with Norbert Francis Attard, were called upon to collaborate with this community to create an interactive art exhibition within the gardens to remind New Yorkers of their existence. Norbert’s art project succeeded in placing the gardens within the context of an essential “urban” living space – offering a balance between nature and the office – with the padlock left open to welcome passers-by to this other world. “It’s what I call the virtual world against the natural world,” says Norbert. “New York is chock-a-block with buildings and a bustling corporate community. One of the wonderful things that I discovered there are these gardens. The sense of community there is extraordinary! It is such an integral part of their lives that

some consider it to be eligible for heritage site status.

of these gardens to politicians and developers.

“To explore this balance between work and play, I decided that each piece should consist of items from both worlds, dayto-day objects found in the workplace or the garden: from one, computers, cables, keyboards, paper and pencils; from the other, seeds, leaves, soil, pots and tools. Each work represents a fusion of the man-made and natural worlds, a tension that we all live with.

“While I was there, the gardeners organised an event in the garden to raise money for a member of the community whose house had suffered a damaging fire. I haven’t seen that done before – they all supported this person at a time of need when he would probably have otherwise suffered the consequences alone.

“I worked closely with the gardeners to create the individual installations using some of their gardening tools, while also scouring thrift shops and hunting down an IBM keyboard from a skip. What was seen as trash was brought back to life – reflecting, I think, the insignificance

“For the time that I was there I felt that I was temporarily a part of their world, collaborating with their incentives, and also the curator who had the foresight for this project ultimately being the silent artist behind my work.” >>




Photo: Anna Lise Jensen

A Lot of Possibilities was made possible in part with public funds from the Manhattan Community Arts Fund, supported by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and administered by Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, and curated by Anna Lise Jensen from 18 September to 13 October 2010. For more information log on to Norbert Francis Attard ( has recently been nominated, along with 10 other international artists, for the Cool Silicon Art Award 2012 in Dresden, Germany. Artwork by Norbert can be seen at Lily Agius Gallery, 54 Cathedral Street, Sliema. V TOP FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: SEED MONEY, TIME IS MONEY, STILL LIFE, SPROUTING THOUGHTS, PINK SLIP, TOSSED SALAD, FORBIDDEN FRUIT, LAPTOP LUNCH.




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A FLAIR FOR HAIR Since opening his doors in 2008, Dean Gera’s name has become synonymous in Malta for the visionary hairdressing style that so delights his regular clientele.


ean Gera was born in Malta, to become the next generation of hairdressers. At the age of 14 he began working in his mother’s salon – sweeping the floors and folding towels. It was here that Dean fell in love with hairdressing: “I think it was the way in which a client leaves the salon with such confidence”. He took up hairdressing professionally at the tender age of 16 and worked alongside his mother for four years. “My mother taught me the foundations of hairdressing – I would have never got where I have without her”. Dean left Malta when he was 20 to gain professional experience in London. It was here that he worked alongside hairdressing legend Trevor Sorbie in London’s Covent Garden.

How did you end up working for Trevor Sorbie? I still remember walking into his salon for the first time. I felt this ease, the atmosphere and the whole philosophy just made sense to me. I knew immediately that this was my top choice – I felt that the other salons were too stiff or too eccentric. I had to do a couple of cuts for my interview and I was so nervous. They called me back the next day and offered me a junior stylist position where I had to complete my training. I was over the moon and after two months of intensive training I became an official stylist with the team. What was it like working there? It was honestly a dream come true – I enjoyed 044


What was your most memorable moment? That’s so hard, there were so many. My first celebrity client? Styling the models for London Fashion Week? However, it must have been the UK Hairdressing Awards. It was the event where we (Trevor Sorbie) were nominated for Best Creative Team and Angelo Seminara, the leading hairdresser at Trevor Sorbie, was nominated for Best British Hairdresser. We ended up winning both awards. I can’t explain how proud I felt to be a part of the team, the emotions were so high and it makes my hair stand up on end just talking about it. What is the one thing you took away from the experience of working with Trevor Sorbie? Their philosophy about hairdressing. I was taught many technical skills and creative techniques, but it all followed a certain style. It was all carried out with such elegance. Trevor Sorbie is never over the top, the creations are so chic – which I believe is much harder than creating outrageous styles and cuts and calling them ‘art’. I also learnt how to tailor cuts according to the individual; I take into consideration the client’s colouring, face shape and lifestyle. It’s about making innovation elegant. What’s it like working in Malta after experiencing such a buzz in London? Many people complain when they come back here, but I absolutely love Malta. My family is here and I always knew I would return. I mean, there are times when it gets repetitive and I just want to pack up and leave but I adore my clients and have built up such good relationships with them. I have modelled my salon on the elegance and understated style of Trevor Sorbie, which I believe is what most of the Maltese market aspires to. Is there anything you would like to see improve in the Maltese market? I believe not enough people take good care of their hair here, which surprises me because your hair affects your entire appearance. Having good healthy hair gives you a boost, it makes you feel good, and yet people would rather spend money on clothes. I suppose the

clothing industry is better marketed. Not many people are blessed with strong hair, especially in Malta with its maximum sun exposure, and having beautiful, silky hair costs money. And it’s not only about regular cuts: I also encourage my clients to use top-of-the-range shampoos and treatments to feed their hair and build up its strength. I guarantee that they will feel and see the difference. What has it been like opening and having your own hair salon? So hard! (laughs). I had no idea about business and it is so different, managing your own salon. I needed to learn the management ropes in such a short time – well, I’m still learning! It is just something I had never thought about doing: wages, taxes, statements – it was so overwhelming. But things are going well, I mean in four years I’ve opened three salons, so I am quite proud of that. What about your team? I was so lucky finding my staff – I hear so many horror stories about some employees! Nikki, who is now one of my salon managers, is incredible, both technically and personally. She has such a flair for the industry – anyone who knows her will tell you that she is one of the warmest people they have ever met. She is able to put a genuine smile on anyone’s face. I currently have a team of 10 and I am always on the lookout for ambitious individuals wanting to learn. Where do you see yourself in a few years? I have so many dreams about the future. All I know is that I enjoy making people feel good so I want to work along those lines and hopefully inspire fellow hairdressers whose aim is to make it in the industry.

Photography: Jan Zammit Hair: Dean Gera team Make-up: Michelle Vella, Chantal Busuttil

What made you move to London? It was always my dream to work outside Malta, as did my mother and her brother and sisters, but I never thought it would happen. My girlfriend made me send my CV to some salons in London as she was going to study there and encouraged me to go with her. I remember thinking that her choice of salons was insane, she was crazy to think that hairdressers who wrote books, won awards and created legendary haircuts would even consider my CV. She is so ambitious and still keeps on pushing me!

every second of it. Nothing could be more inspiring and motivating than seeing some of London’s most influential hairdressers working alongside you. I styled the hair for many top celebrities, worked on fashion shows, did magazine photo shoots, travelled to top seminars – what is there not to love about that?


Tel: +356 2141 1505

Tel: +356 2138 5052

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Dress from French Connection €215 Bracelet from French Connection €29









HIM DRESS THE PART THIS SEASON, KEEP THE BOTTOMS CASUAL, TROUSERS OR RUGGED DENIMS. WHILE GIVING THE TOP SOME THOUGHT. DON’T TAKE THINGS TOO SERIOUSLY, ADD AN ACCESSORY; WAISTCOAT, SCARF OR A BOW TIE (IF YOUR BRAVE ENOUGH!) Scotch & Soda shirt @ Junction - €71.95 Scotch & Soda waistcoat @ Junction - €72.95 Scotch & Soda trousers @ Junction - €119.95 Scotch & Soda scarf @ Junction - €34.95

Photography + Styling: Luke Engerer Model: Matthew from




Anne Marie Spiteri recounts her experiences in the Big Apple.

Words by: Anne Marie Spiteri




New York holds a prestigious place on the travel wish list of most people I know. It was firmly imprinted on my list, too, so when an unexpected opportunity to spend a few days in the Big Apple presented itself, I grabbed it with both hands and dragged it all the way to the airport. With me I took expandable luggage, trusty guidebook and a carefully chosen travel companion who I will from here onwards refer to as the Seasoned Globetrotter. >> NYC ISSUE

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ost appropriately, I got my first taste of the city that doesn’t sleep in the form of Times Square by night. The area looks like the pet project of a crazy capitalist, with flashing adverts bursting out of ridiculously large screens stuck onto staggeringly tall skyscrapers. It is a prime example of the much scorned beaten track, where throngs of eager and wide eyed tourists sporting obscenely large cameras will push and shove you out of the way to get there first and see it better. Notwithstanding all this, it is worth every second of your touristy unoriginality. Once I was standing in the middle of the square surrounded by its glaring lights I felt a mix of joy, awe and giddiness the likes of which I hadn’t experienced since my early childhood Christmases. The next day, well rested and ready for action, Globetrotter and I took on Fifth Avenue. We emerged from the rusty but trusty subway at the south end

high end shops, the pretty windows of which even entranced the normally hard to impress Seasoned Globetrotter. Upon his surprising request we made our way into Macy’s, where we stumbled upon a fashion party complete with Tommy Hilfiger (the actual man behind the eponymous clothing line), singer Joss Stone, and delectable mini burgers which we incredulously accepted from impeccably dressed waiters. Our gruelling marathon took its toll and it was with aching legs and puffy eyes that we braved the crowds at the Staten Island ferry terminal the next morning. This free trip gave me the kind of pleasure I feel when I land an incredibly good bargain before anyone else. Truth is, everyone else seemed to know about it too, but the ferry is so spacious and airy that it didn’t feel crowded at all. The twenty five minute boat ride along the murky Hudson regaled us with brilliant snapshots of lower Manhattan from a

chatted over homemade lemonade at a cool cafe in Noho (or maybe it was Nolita, who knows?) and lunched at an equally trendy place in Tribeca. In the afternoon we got lost in Central Park, strolled down Museum Mile and then wrapped up our day with drinks and a lovely dinner in the edgy East Village, where we inevitably spoke about how great it would be to live in New York. Before I close off my eulogy I must squeeze in a word of praise for New Yorkers, a hotch potch of very lucky folks that set themselves apart from the stereotypically grumpy and unfriendly big city people. When we were lost, they actually came up to us and asked us where we needed to go, suggested a good restaurant when they saw us peering at menus on the street and joked with us on the subway. These people are obviously proud of their city and they have plenty to be proud of.

>> ONE BELONGS TO NEW YORK INSTANTLY, ONE BELONGS TO IT AS MUCH IN FIVE MINUTES AS IN FIVE YEARS << of Central Park to a crisp, cloudless day and the alluring mouth of the legendary avenue beckoning us. We became so enthralled by the street and its environs that we only managed to emerge, tired and sore but euphoric, a good eleven hours later. The number of world famous landmarks that we gaped at in that time are worthy of a month long trip around a whole country: there was the elegant peak of the Chrysler building, the blindingly colourful lights of Radio City Music Hall, the Gothic spires of St. Patrick’s cathedral and the celestial ceiling of the classic Grand Central Terminal. And then there was the 86th floor observatory of the Empire State building, which with queuing for tickets, security checks and elevators takes a good ninety minutes to get to but rewards lavishly with astonishing views of the prickly bed of skyscrapers that is Manhattan. Here, bitter experience compels me to include a word of advice for the strong willed traveller with a propensity to fight his or her cheesy tourist impulses: don’t. If you want an Empire state building mug from the gift shop on the 80th floor just go ahead and buy it; I still regret not getting one. Landmarks and gift shops aside, Fifth Avenue is home to an infinite parade of

unique angle as well as a good, if somewhat distant, look at the great green lady as we slowly floated past Liberty Island. The return trip was even more pleasant; photographic compulsions satisfied, we just sat and enjoyed the unbeatable combination of fresh air and breathtaking views. Back on solid ground, we made our way to Wall Street, where a rather excited Globetrotter pointed at the New York stock exchange before eagerly making his way to one of the hot dog stalls that dot the street. We then walked to Ground Zero, which felt like any other noisy and dusty construction site until I caught a glimpse of the bronze memorial wall, which is a chilling reminder of the indescribable tragedy that hit New York a decade ago.

Although I was sad to leave New York, I was determined to make my departure a cheery see you soon rather than a heart wrenching farewell. Next time I go back I want to walk along the High Line, visit the MoMA and the Guggenheim and explore more of the city’s neighbourhoods. And when Globetrotter’s not looking, I might even sneak off to the Empire State building to finally buy myself that much yearned for mug. V

With the main tourist attractions safely under our belt, the Seasoned Globetrotter and I decided to spend our last day the way we thought any average New Yorker might choose to while away their Saturday. We ambled about the streets of Soho, admiring the varied wares displayed on street stalls and browsing through pretty boutiques and quirky shops all lined up side by side. We NYC ISSUE



NY TR VEL TIPS NEW YORK CITY HAS GOT TO BE ONE OF THE MOST LOVED HOLIDAY DESTINATIONS ON THE PLANET BOASTING A LIMITLESS NUMBER OF ATTRACTIONS WITH SO MANY THINGS TO DO. HOWEVER YOU DECIDE TO SPEND YOUR TIME, HERE ARE BUT A FEW YOU SIMPLY CAN’T MISS. THE MUSEUM OF THE MOVING IMAGE Located in Astoria, Queens, this museum is housed in one of 13 buildings that was part of the Astoria Studio complex, where films were made from the 1920s to 1970, first by Paramount and then by the US Army. The museum’s collection spans the history of film-making, with many interactive opportunities and in addition to the permanent collection, the museum hosts temporary exhibits that highlight many important elements and figures of film. 36-01 35 Avenue (36/37th Streets) Astoria, NY 11106

A STROLL THROUGH CENTRAL PARK Leave your New York hotel and enjoy a stroll or bike ride through one of America’s most famous parks. There are plenty of activities and there’s always something special going on in the park. Besides the natural splendor of the surroundings, the best part about Central Park is that it’s free!

RADIO CITY MUSIC HALL Is there a more American theater than Radio City Music Hall? This timeless testament to entertainment has captivated visitors since the 1930s and no other dance troupe will ever hold the esteem in the hearts of Americans like the Rockettes.

TIMES SQUARE It doesn’t have to be New Year’s Eve to enjoy Times Square in New York City. As the heartbeat of NYC, Times Square signifies everything that the city represents.

The excitement, the glamour, the independent free-spiritedness and artistic qualities of New York are all on display in this timeless spot. One of the best places to begin sampling true New York night life.

THE MUSEUM OF MODERN ART (MoMA) Founded in 1929, this museum is dedicated entirely to contemporary art and is home to an impressive collection of modern pieces. Located in midtown Manhattan, the MoMA’s impressive permanent collection features numerous famous works of art and the ever-changing exhibitions ensure that even repeat visitors won’t get bored. 11 West 53 Street (between 5th and 6th Avenues)

CHELSEA, MANHATTAN As neighbourhood transformations go, few rival Chelsea for its culture, architecture and celebrity. Here, it’s normal to spot punk icon Debbie Harry walking her dog, Bobby Flay shopping at Whole Foods or the crew of Law & Order: SVU crowding the sidewalk with cameras and lights. The High Line, an elevated train line that has been converted into a walking park, transcends the traffic and provides one of the most priceless commodities in the City: an unobstructed view. Chelsea also still retains vestiges of its rugged history, with visitors devoted to rock ‘n’ roll making the pilgrimage to the Chelsea Hotel to see where Jimi Hendrix, Tom Waits and Janis Joplin once partied.

ACCOMMODATION SUGGESTIONS: Crosby Street Hotel This hotel is situated on a quiet cobbled street in the heart of New York’s vibrant Soho neighbourhood. The décor blends traditional styles with a mix of modern and classic colour palettes and patterns. All the rooms have high ceilings and full-length windows. You can enjoy a meal or afternoon tea in The Crosby Bar in a private leafy garden and although there’s no shortage of worthwhile cinemas around NYC, the Crosby Street Hotel offers a 100-seat screening room where you can order cocktails and a platter while you watch a flick.

The Library Hotel Fashioned from a landmark 1900 brick and terracotta building, this boutique treasure is an oasis of modern elegance, providing a thought-provoking experience of sophisticated Midtown Manhattan leisure for travellers with a passion for culture and individual expression. Each of the 10 floors is individually decorated with art and a collection of books that relate to the room’s unique theme.

Night Hotel Those who like their hotels dark, glamorous and with an edge should try this gothic-themed boutique hotel located in Times Square. The stylish noir-inspired monochrome decor sets this hotel apart from the rest and is a great choice for those wishing to visit the fashionable theatre district. Each of the 72 sleek, chic and intimate rooms comes with a plasma TV, iPod stereo system and luxury bathroom products.

The Pod Many hotels try – and fail – to fit the trendy but budget niche, but the Pod, located in the heart of the Midtown East neighbourhood, is most definitely the exception. By far one of the coolest hotels New York has to offer, The Pod is clean and modern with funky murals. You can choose from a private room with a shared bathroom or a more economical bunk-bed room. This hotel is a good choice for someone who doesn’t want to re-mortgage their house to make a trip to New York. V





This grand dame of boat parties includes a five-course dinner, four-hour premium open bar, dancing, a prime view of the fireworks, party favours and a midnight champagne toast. Departs from Pier 81 at West 41st Street and the Hudson River,

Grown-up Entertainment

The Floating Kabarette – a Brooklynbased collective of aerialist performers, burlesque acts, chanteuse singers, performance artists, vaudevillians and dancers – intend to bring a bit of naughtiness and festive revelry to Galapagos Art Space this New Year’s Eve. The show wraps up with a midnight champagne toast. 16 Main Street, Dumbo, Brooklyn,

Third Annual NYE Masked Ball

Self-styled “King of Queer Sleaze” Daniel Nardicio is behind this clothing-optional masquerade event. Porn star Jake Steel will host the all-male soirée, along with six “totally starkers” dancers, an all-night open vodka bar, a midnight champagne toast and “whore-d’ oeuvres”. Be sure to undress to impress – the best mask wins a $150 prize. 30 Lexington Avenue, between East 23rd and East 24th.


You’ve probably seen it in countless Hollywood films and each year it is always the same. Times Square is a magnet for New Year’s Eve revellers in New York. Bring a bottle and dress up warm to watch the crystal ball drop on the stroke of midnight at one of the world’s biggest street parties. With much jostling, hugging, screaming and kissing, the ball touches bottom at the stroke of midnight and the crowd goes wild, seeing in the New Year in raucous New York style. 1560 Broadway, between 46th & 47th streets.

La Soiree London November 2011 January 2012 Taking place in the Roundhouse, the La Soiree London shows feature a variety of twisted cabaret acts that are taking to the stage at the popular Camden venue for a season of titillating performances. Turning the Roundhouse into something of a pop-up big top for a season of live performances, La Soiree brings a dose of old school glamour to Camden for the winter of 20112012. Call +44 844 482 8008.


Established artists Anna Galea and Celia Borg Cardona are exhibiting their latest artworks at the Embassy of Malta in Paris until 19 January. Anna and Celia, in their separate ways, capture the different flavours of Mediterranean Malta.

Christmas Collective EXHIBITION Lily Agius Gallery Until 24 December

An exhibition of paintings, photography, limited edition prints, sculptures, ornaments, cookie tables, jewellery and books are on display until Christmas Eve. Personal gifts are available for delivery and wrapping and framing on request. December opening hours: Monday-Saturday 11am-7pm, on Christmas Eve 10am-3pm and by appointment outside opening hours. 54 Cathedral Street, Sliema, 2099-2488/9929-2488,,


Take it to the street this New Year’s Eve! A street party will be held in the newly revamped St George’s Square joining other capitals around the world for Malta’s first official national New Year’s Eve countdown party.




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GIFT CERTIFICATES AND A COMPLIMENTARY DELIVERY SERVICE ARE AVAILABLE Trade Equiries: Business Works Ltd, Mdina Road Attard - ATD 9021 T: +356 2144 8800 E:

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“I KNEW WHAT WOULD HAPPEN AND IT SURE AS S**T DID.” Hey guys, so what’s the plan? Following the release of our new single Tomorrow, we are currently working on our next single which we intend to record early next year and we have a couple of gigs lined up before the end of the year. We heard you are working on your first album: what’s happening with that? An album? Yes, definitely! We’re working on putting together an album in the very near future. How long have you guys been together? The current line-up of Plan Zero has been together for just over a year, but Luke, Charlot S and Wanese have been playing together for the past five years. I have to say that when I listen to your music, I get the distinct impression that you’ve been around for quite a while. How long have you been jamming together? The majority of us have been playing music for the past two decades. Music has always been a big part of our lives and we live and breathe it every day. Who is your greatest inspiration? Being into music for so many years, and being from such different backgrounds, there have been many great artists who have inspired us. Some of the greatest are Radiohead, David Bowie and Guns ‘n’ Roses – amongst a bunch of others. What is your song-writing process like? It’s usually spontaneous! We just start jamming and it all takes off from there. It’s not really something we decide to do, so

there’s no definite process. Sometimes there’s a melody that goes off in your head, sometimes it’s a note played by accident – it just happens.

haven’t confirmed the date yet. However, you can visit our facebook page on for news of any upcoming gigs.

Favourite band/s? Our favourite bands include Live, Muse, Queensryche, Radiohead and Pink Floyd.

I was listening to an interview on the radio recently, so what’s with the “mankini”? Ha! The band had an interview on Oz & J Big Drive Home that I couldn’t attend. So I told the guys not to tell Oz & J that I was doing a photo shoot for Vamp because I knew what would happen and it sure as s**t did! They were basically joking when they suggested I was modelling a man-kini – which I wasn’t! But it’s all cool.

And the three worst bands of all time? We can think of a lot of “worst bands”, but if I had to choose three they would probably be ABBA, the Spice Girls and every boy band that ever existed – out of a bunch of others! What would be your biggest tip for upcoming local artists? Play live as much as possible, write original material and play what comes from within. Just be yourself – there’s an audience for everyone out there. How do you feel about pop music today? Hunter S. Thompson once said, when asked a similar question in an interview: “I feel the same way about disco as I do about herpes” and we can’t say we disagree. The only difference is we now call it “pop”. Having said that, there are only a few that I consider bearable, or dare I say good? What would your dream gig be? My dream gig would be playing at the 02 arena in front of thousands of people – or maybe Glastonbury.

Who would you consider the best guitarist of all time? I think Slash from Guns ‘n’ Roses is my favourite guitar player. The dude can really play! I love every single note he plays. Why is the band called Plan Zero? At first when we started jamming together we had nothing planned – no clue at all! So we started looking for a name for the band. After a few odd names, Joseph came up with “Plan Zero” which seemed to fit the bill, I guess. What was your best gig so far? The Beer Fest in Malta is the best one to date. But there is much more to come. What do you reckon is the problem with the world today? Politics. V

What gigs do you have planned in the near future? We have a gig coming up soon but we NYC ISSUE



ASTING RADITION. When it comes to eating a Christmas meal, nothing will do but a home cooked turkey dinner to feast on with family and friends. Chef Bart Saive lets us in on the secrets for a perfect festive dinner.




Christmas Stuffed Turkey 1 oven-ready turkey (3.6 – 4.5 kg) 4 tbsp olive oil Salt and freshly ground black pepper 125g butter, melted 300ml stock or water FOR THE STUFFING: 1 onion, finely chopped 25g butter 1-2 sticks celery, diced 450g pork sausagemeat 230g breadcrumbs 2 eggs 1 tbsp fresh chopped parsley 1 tbsp fresh chopped thyme 75g raisins 50g dried apricots or prunes 125g hazelnuts, toasted Grated rind of a lemon Salt and freshly ground pepper FOR THE GRAVY: Cooking juices from the turkey 1 tbsp flour 450ml of turkey or chicken stock 2-3 tbsp sherry or port Preparation Allow the turkey to thaw thoroughly, preferably at the bottom of the fridge, for two to three days and bring it up to room temperature before cooking it. Stuff the turkey only shortly before cooking. Prepare the stuffing. Gently fry the onion in the butter until soft, adding the celery to soften slightly. Place sausagemeat, breadcrumbs, eggs and herbs in a bowl and beat well. Add the onion and celery and the remaining ingredients. Preheat the oven to 190C, 170C fan oven, gas mark 5. Loosely stuff the neck end of the turkey, skewering or sewing the skin flap down to prevent stuffing spilling out while cooking. Weigh bird with stuffing for calculating cooking time-see below. Rub the turkey all over with oil and season with salt and pepper. Place breast down in a roasting pan, spoon over some butter and put in the oven. Allow 15 minutes for each 450gr (of turkey and stuffing) and then 15 minutes extra. Baste with cooking juices every 20-30 minutes. Turn over after one hour and baste with remaining butter. Cover loosely with aluminium foil if the skin starts

browning too quickly and add a little chicken stock or water if the juices look like burning, but allow them to caramelise and brown because that’s what gives the gravy its flavour. To check if the turkey is cooked, use the same process as for roast chicken – insert a skewer into the top of the leg and if the juices are not clear, cook for another 10 minutes and then check again. When ready, remove the turkey from the oven, wrap in a double thickness of aluminium foil and allow to rest in a warm place for about 30 minutes before carving.

turkey but leave enough space for the mixture to expand. Cook turkey as per instructions.

For the gravy, pour off excess fat from the roasting pan and allow remaining fat and juices to cool slightly. Sprinkle the flour and stir to blend with juices, then add the stock and sherry or port and bring to the boil, whisking. Let the gravy simmer and reduce for a while, then season and strain into a sauceboat.


Cranberry and Apricot Stuffing (sufficient for 3k turkey)

200g veal, minced 4 slices bread, crumbled 1 egg Salt and freshly ground pepper A big handful of cranberries 300g dried apricots, finely chopped 1 cup of Grand Marnier

Apple Muffins Many states in the US have legally adopted official state beverages, fruits, vegetables, dishes, etc., and in 1987, the apple muffin, which was created by elementary school children in North Syracuse, was declared the official muffin of New York. This is the official recipe.

2 cups plain (all-purpose) flour ¾ cup packed brown sugar ½ cup sugar 2 tsp baking soda 1½ tsp ground cinnamon ½ tsp salt ¼ to ½ tsp ground cloves 1 tsp ground nutmeg 3 eggs, lightly beaten ½ cup butter, melted 120g cream cheese, cut into small pieces ½ tsp pure vanilla extract 2 cups apples, coarsely chopped ½ cup raisins ½ cup chopped walnuts TOPPING:

Preparation Combine all the stuffing ingredients and use mixture to stuff turkey. Truss turkey and cook as instructed above.

Apple & Chestnut Stuffing 500g breadcrumbs 1 tbsp butter 1 onion, finely chopped 2 sticks celery, finely chopped 1 apple, peeled, cored and diced 200g chestnuts, boiled in skin, chopped 1 tsp dried sage 1 tsp thyme 1 tsp salt 1 tsp freshly ground pepper 200ml apple juice or chicken stock if you prefer the stuffing less sweet

Preparation Saute onions in butter until glazed, add celery and simmer for 5 minutes without allowing vegetables to colour. Add apple and simmer for another 5 minutes. Remove from heat, add chestnuts and herbs and season to taste. Allow to cool down then add the breadcrumbs, then add apple juice or stock. Stuff

½ cup packed brown sugar 1½ cup finely chopped walnuts ¼ cup all-purpose flour 2 tbsp butter, melted 1 tsp ground cinnamon 1 tsp grated lemon peel Preparation In large bowl, combine flour, sugar, salt, spices and baking soda. In another bowl combine eggs, butter, cream cheese and vanilla extract. Add to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Fold in apples, raisins and walnuts. Fill greased or paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Combine topping ingredients and sprinkle topping over the batter in the cups. Bake at 190C for 20-25 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. Cool for five minutes before removing the muffins from the cups to a cooling rack. V Bart Saive is the chef for the Belgium Embassy in Malta and caters for private dinner parties and events, including fine dining and outdoor venues. He can be contacted by telephone on 7999 6292 or email




De Cecco offers tradition while adapting to the needs of contemporary taste, resulting in an unrivalled leading position for high quality pasta in Italy and the world.

A leading company in the world and still growing

The years of the Great War and of production recovery

De Cecco started in 1886 with the fifth generation running the company today. They employ over 800 people and produce up to 500 tons of pasta every day in 230 different shapes and sizes that are exported in more than 90 countries worldwide. In 2004, De Cecco celebrated their 111st year in the US market, which represents 34 per cent of their overall exports and where De Cecco started exporting when no other pasta producer did. Over the last few years they have opened branches in USA, England, France and Germany.

After World War II, De Cecco the factory was rebuilt after it was destroyed from bombing and during the 1950s the company opened a pasta factory in Pescara in order to support the increased production of that period. In the 1970s Frank Sinatra invited a friend who owned a jam factory to the De Cecco factory that opened in Fara San Martino in 1976 to discuss the possibility of purchasing De Cecco.

The roots of a success handed down from generation to generation More than 100 years ago in the Abruzzo region, a start of a story began with the De Cecco Brothers and the birth of their Mill and Pasta factory, when Italy was still politically divided. At that time, in Fara San Martino – a small village in the province of Chieti, at the foot of the Maiella mountain – don Nicola De Cecco made the “best flour in the county” with his stone mill and “Zì Nicola” (his nickname) passed on his passion to his son Filippo, who starts a new chapter in the story of the De Cecco family, starting the production of pasta: this is how the De Cecco Bros. Mill and Pasta Factory was founded.

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A century-long experience, “patented” and mentioned in the Treccani encyclopedia Pasta was dried in the sun until, in 1889, on the basis of old-school traditional experience and engineering intuition, Filippo De Cecco created a low-temperature dryer creating better quality and lifespan for pasta. This genius invention gave way for De Cecco to enter new global markets.

The new pasta factory in Fara San Martino and the doubling of our production capacity The new factory unit is opened in Fara San Martino with double production capacity. Then, in 1986, De Cecco makes an essential change in order to meet the new market requirements: it stops being a family company and becomes a corporate company. The first step in this new organisation is a marketing restructuring with the creation of its own sales network. This change was strongly required by the founder’s grandson, “Cavaliere del Lavoro” Filippo Antonio, and great-grandsons, Saturnino and Giuseppe Aristide, and was definitely a successful decision: the company’s turnover increased from 80 billion lire of 1986 to 330 million Euros in 2008 with an export rate of 38 per cent. Another important stage is the foundation, in 1986, of the “Società Olearia” (oil production company): the first step towards the diversification of products that will be enhanced in 1993. The 90s are the years of large investments: a new mill is built in Fara San Martino, featuring a process capacity of 11,000 quintals of wheat per day; a new factory is opened in Ortona (Chieti), a typical example of advanced technology serving old-school pastamaking tradition.

A stubborn quest for perfection as main feature of our DNA One thing has never changed: their will to hand down, protect and strengthen the production principles of our Founder, now inherent to the DNA of this unique company in the pasta sector. Top quality wheat selection, fresh flour from their own mill, bronze plates, slow drying at low temperature and quality assurance performed by means of advanced technologies. Inviolable principles protected and applied today by the descendants of their founder: Filippo Antonio, Saturnino and Giuseppe Aristide De Cecco. Today, like in the past, everything is produced with great passion and that stubborn quest for perfection that is applied to any De Cecco product, from pasta to anything else.

Trade Enquires: Vivian Corporation T: +356 21344689 F: +356 21341087



A CABINET OF CURIOSITIES Interview and words by Lily Agius


ntering Cabouxon is like walking into a bourgeois flea market. It sells everything from A to Z for young and old alike – from Christening to wedding gifts, and from the time of the Grand Masters to the period of British rule – all masterfully blended together in one flowing, stylish jumble. Teased by the search for something that suits your tastes amongst everything that is on display, it is highly unlikely that you won’t find something that you like or feel that you need. Daniel Azzopardi, the young entrepreneur behind this reasonably new boutique shop, has raised the stakes over the last year to introduce even more of a selection in a contemporary direction, while continuing the interests of the family business – Maltese silver – as well as his wife’s introduction of bridal shoes by British designer Aruna Seth, worn by British royalty. Seven years ago, Daniel oversaw the re-branding of their 43-year-old tradition of silver-making, claiming its historic position with the name The Maltese Silver Collection. With its new opulent packaging, limited editions and contemporary designs, Daniel has brought

back a traditional craft to the new generation – what he calls “silver with a difference”.

Cabouxon offers a lifestyle – a lifestyle for many. We will just have to wait and see what else Daniel will bring to the table, and with two more big projects already under his belt, it can’t be long before we hear about them. Keep an eye out for Cabouxon’s latest collection of waterproof watches, designed by Daniel, available in a variety of colours and shapes that changes every year. As well as undertaking private commissions, Cabouxon can also arrange wedding gift lists. For more information contact Daniel at Cabouxon by telephone on 2138 5225 or email

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As he explains: “We couldn’t keep on selling just classically-designed silver. There has been a move away from the classic and dark wood interiors to a cleaner and less cluttered look at home, so we have adapted and given options to our clients. Ninety-five per cent of what we sell is made by us and forms part of the collection – we are very proud of our collection and confident in the brand. We also undertake commissions to design jewellery and silverware to suit a client’s particular taste. Things have changed a great deal and it was important that we adapted.” Daniel’s advice to anyone wanting to open their own business is to follow their ambition and move with the times. Whether or not you have the privilege of joining a family business, there are still risks, but a great idea delivered with confidence is always worth making happen. Mistakes can occur, things may not work, but if you try and try again, with

experience you will find your way. In time, with a good reputation and work etiquette, you will find things easier to manage and other companies and brands more willing to work with you. Work hard, he says, but – most importantly – love what you do.

Cabouxon, Spinola Bay, St Julian’s. V




HOTSPOTS! VAMP BRINGS YOU A DELECTABLE SELECTION OF RESTAURANTS IN ST. JULIANS! intimate dinners, private parties, wedding celebrations and conference dinners. From the moment you step inside the restaurant, you will be transported to the lands of the Orient to enjoy mouthwatering delicacies prepared from authentic Thai ingredients and, original centuries-old recipes from the Royal Palace.

Ideally situated overlooking picturesque Spinola Bay, Peppinos is the perfect venue for all occasions. Spread over three floors, this popular wine bar/restaurant is the ideal place for dining, whether it’s a romantic meal on the balcony, enjoying the spectacular view from the roof or in a cosy yet smart setting on the second floor. For those who prefer a light meal or a quite divine plate of pasta, the wine bar on the first floor offers a very informal and relaxed atmosphere. 31 St George’s Road, Spinola Bay Tel: 2137 3200

THE BLUE ELEPHANT The Blue Elephant is a tranquil oasis of waterfalls, luscious greenery and tropical flowers, smiling friendly staff and the best Royal Thai cuisine in Malta, guaranteeing a memorable visit. Fresh fruit, herbs and tons of orchids are flown in weekly, direct from Thailand. This delightful restaurant offers the possibility of reserving your own special place and surprising your guests in the unique atmosphere of one of its private huts. The Blue Elephant can cater for a variety of occasions such as



Hilton Hotel, Portomaso Tel: 2138 3383

QUADRO RESTAURANT Dine indoors or under the stars, enjoying the elegance and warmth of one of Malta’s finest restaurants. In addition to the main restaurant, two private rooms, ideal for special occasions or private functions, enjoy lovely sea views. Winner of the 2010 ‘Fine Dining Award’ and the ‘MHRA recommended’ Award, Quadro Restaurant guarantees a memorable dining experience in a beautiful setting.

ASSAGGI Tucked away in a side street, detached from the chaos of the St Julian’s main road, Assaggi is a chic and welcoming restaurant truly worth discovering serving delicious Italian/Mediterranean cuisine. ‘Assaggi’ is the Italian word for ‘tasters’ – and this is one of the things at which the restaurant excels. Sharing the appetising starters and main courses between the group of diners is encouraged, which allows you to try the different seasonal dishes presented. The focus is on creating genuine and simple dishes with a difference. Parking is available just outside the restaurant, so don’t forget to ask when making your reservation. Triq il-Qaliet Tel: 2133 6625 or 7732 3134

Westin Dragonara Resort Tel: 2138 1000


Now opening for Sunday lunch and dinners daily, Zeri’s is located just down the steps at Portomaso Marina. The menu boasts over 50 dishes specialising in fresh fish and a variety of prime cuts of meat and carries over 160 wines. The restaurant is very busy all year round and it is advisable to make a reservation. Free parking is available. Zeri’s is now accepting bookings for Christmas functions. Portomaso Marina, Portomaso Tel: 2135 9559 or 7957 3333

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It all sparkles at the Hilton this Christmas Celebrate your Christmas season with Hilton Malta’s glamorous programme this year. A selection of lavish breakfasts, lunches and dinners will be available in delightful venues.

Come to the Hilton and collect our extensive Christmas Brochure and you will also benefit from a selection of gift vouchers available inside. Making your Reservations For Festivity Meals Bookings call on 2373 3040/3500 or e-mail / For Room Bookings call on 2373 3640/1/3 or e-mail

SACREDSKIN Tattooist Guy Lee moved from Kent in the UK to Malta this July soon finding where to flex his creative hand at Bobby’s Tattoos. He talks to VAMP about why he made the move, the art of tattooing and its future...

Why did you decide to move to Malta?

I enjoy mixing machine work and the traditional way of hand poking, which combines old and new. I suppose if I had to describe it in a couple of words, it would be a modern spiritual style. I am a Reiki Master and a spiritual being, and this has heavily influenced me on the spiritual side of tattooing. I enjoy the progressive side of new techniques and incorporating both styles together.

I believe that travelling is important to progress as an artist and as a person and to keep your senses stimulated. To mingle with different cultures is a priceless experience that can have a positive influence on you. I chose Malta as my home for many reasons: the history here is very influential to my art and the island inspires me greatly, the people are very friendly and most of all I am very fortunate and extremely grateful to work in such a wonderful studio with great people who have made me feel very welcome to Malta. I am excited about the prospect of moving forward to 2012 with the great team at Bobby’s and implementing many new ideas and plans for the coming year.

You specialise in hand poking; can you describe what this is for our readers? Hand poking is the traditional method of tattooing that uses a hand-held, non-electrical handmade tool with a needle that is pushed into the skin by hand. I regard it as a spiritual way of tattooing and really enjoy incorporating this side of myself into my art.

What do you love most about your profession? Feeling honoured and privileged to tattoo clients’ skin is, without a doubt, at the top of the list of reasons why I love my job – integrating my ideas with those of the clients resulting in wonderful pieces of art that are subsequently worn for the rest of their life. I am so grateful that I am fortunate enough to be in this industry and am able to continuously progress by pushing myself in this lifelearning role. If you could change anything in the tattoo industry, what would it be? I would have to say that I’d like to remove the stigma attached to tattooing – and there is still a stigma, even though it is one of



the oldest trades in the world. Tattooing has traced back to Neolithic times in 3300 BC. The body of Otzi the Iceman, found in the South Tyrol of Italy in 1991, bore 57 tattoos. Tattooing spread among the upper classes all over Europe in the 19th century, King George V had himself inked with the cross of Jerusalem when he travelled to the Middle East in 1892. Winston Churchill and his mother both bore tattoos and it was rumoured that Queen Victoria had a small tattoo in an intimate – undisclosed – area. I can see that the stigma is being slowly melted away by today’s younger generations, who are more liberal minded and are open to expressing themselves as individuals, which in return is opening the minds of others to this amazing art form. It is a slow process, but changes are happening.

What would you like to see in the future in the industry? Definitely tighter controls on unlicensed tattooists and the ability to purchase tattoo equipment. It really gets to me how so many individuals are tattooing skin in unhygienic conditions and without proper training. And it is sad to see naive people being unaware of this and getting inked by unqualified individuals with often shocking results. On a positive note, these are exciting times for us artists, with the popularity of tattoos increasing and the artists themselves continually moving forward. It keeps us all pushing ourselves to our fullest ability, resulting in creations of amazing art that are adorning people all over the world. V

Join Bobbys Bugibba Wood group on

How would you describe your style of tattooing?


NYC ISSUE I TEL: 2010 3715, 2010 2949

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