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rockin’ in rio

Argentine Malbec

simply scandinavian

bentley’s mulsanne

THE best chili

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Grape The Argentine varietal Malbec has regained its reputation for subtlety and balance— and hard times actually helped. 59

fall/winter 2015



Luxury, Meet Power

Invitation to Style

Beneath the elegant exterior of Bentley’s Mulsanne beats the heart of a world-class race car. 28

Power Brands. Up & Comers. New Discoveries. From Ermenegildo Zegna and Veronica Beard to Culturata and more, check out designers who are a part of the new fall fashions. 32

The Romance of Rio With beauty, beaches and the bossa nova, the South American metropolis that is Rio stirs the passions. 46

Simply Scandinavian That’s incomparable Eton shirts—but they were born in the U.S.A. 52


Service Directory Your guide to the M PENNER experience. 62

Exciting new finds for you. 6

The M PENNER Guide Ask Mr. Etiquette…get cuffed with Tateossian…the Robbie Burns cocktail…the albums that weren’t…from Italy with love…and more! 13

A Family Affair Experience a world of men’s fashion at the Fortezza da Basso in Florence, Italy. 18

Listen Up! Whether you stream on Spotify or still feel compelled to “own it” via iTunes, this new music is essential listening. 20


42 13

Look Good, Keep Well We cover daydreaming, beet eating, blood pressure, bad attitudes and more! 64


Some Like It Hot Once a year, a tiny town shows the world how to do chili—alias “Texas Red.” 56

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invitation to style

Exciting New Finds for You sneak peeks

On the move!



Get the blues!




e were talking the other day about how excited we get when summer finally passes and it starts to cool down. For us, that means cotton and linen give way to cashmere and leather. Our mannequins are adorned with layers of sweaters and scarves. A rich depth of color comes into play and beautiful textures beg your touch. You’ll discover some of our favorite picks for the season beginning on page 32, photographed at the stunning Hotel Granduca (which has just opened a second hotel in Austin!). As you’ll see, once again we have curated a collection that balances the world-class brands you know and love, new and exciting designers and, perhaps our favorite, small-production artisan collections. In “Simply Scandinavian” (page 52), we tell the story of Eton shirts, crafted in Europe from the finest cotton grown in the U.S.A. In “A Family Affair” (page 18), we share snapshots from our recent buying trip to Italy with our boys. Oh, and we have a special surprise for you! Check out the page facing this one, and start planning your holiday wardrobe. For the last 40 years, we’ve built our reputation on finding the most beautiful and luxurious clothing and accessories from around the world, presenting them to you by an expert sales team, and finalizing your perfect fit in our on-site tailor shop. We look forward to showing you our fall/winter collection in person and hope to see you soon!

1180-06 UPTOWN PARK BLVD. HOUSTON, TX 77056 713.527.8200 mpenner .com Store Hours

Monday to FRIDAY: 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. SATURDAY: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Editorial Director karen penner Editor Mark Dowden Art Director

stephen M. vitarbo

Executive Editor

rita guarna

Managing Editor

Carol Bialkowski

Senior Editor

Timothy Kelley

Editorial Assistant

Jacklyn kouefati

Contributing Editors Michael Hiller, everett potter, Josh Sens, Luca Sumberac

Contributing Photographer cody bess Publishing staff

Publisher Shae Marcus

Advertising Account Executive monica delli santi

Director of Production and Circulation Christine Hamel

Advertising Services Manager jacquelynn fischer

Senior Art Director, Agency Services Kijoo Kim

Production/Art Assistant Alanna Giannantonio

Accounting agnes alves, MEgan Frank Published by Chairman Carroll V. Dowden President Mark Dowden Senior Vice Presidents shae marcus, Carl Olsen

— Murry and Karen Penner and the M PENNER crew

Vice Presidents Rita Guarna, christine hamel M PENNER Magazine is published twice a year by Wainscot Media, 110 Summit Avenue, Montvale, NJ 07645, in association with M PENNER. This is volume 10, number 1. Copyright © 2015 by Wainscot Media, LLC. All rights reserved. E d i to r i a l C o n t r i b u ti o n s : Write to Editor, M PENNER, 110 Summit Avenue, Montvale, NJ 07645; telephone 201.782.5730; email mark.dowden@ wainscotmedia.com. The magazine is not responsible for the return or loss of unsolicited submissions.

1180-06 Uptown Park Blvd. in Uptown Park 713.527.8200 mpenner.com Hours: Monday – Friday, 10 a.m. – 6:30 p.m. Saturdays until 6 p.m. Sundays and after hours, by appointment


S u b s c r i pti o n S e r vi c e s : To change an address or request a subscription, write to Subscriptions, M PENNER, Circulation Department, 110 Summit Avenue, Montvale, NJ 07645; telephone 201.573.5541; email christine.hamel@wainscotmedia.com. A dve r ti s i n g I n q u i r i e s : Contact Shae Marcus at 856.797.2227 or shae.marcus@ wainscotmedia.com.

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Special Offers FROM M PENNER




Take $100 off any purchase of $300 in the M PENNER Men’s Department. Must present this coupon to receive credit. One coupon per customer. May not be combined with any other discounts or offers. Excludes shoes, special orders, and apothecary. OFFER EXPIRES DECEMBER 15, 2015.




Take $100 off any purchase of $300 in the M PENNER Women’s Boutique. Must present this coupon to receive credit. One coupon per customer. May not be combined with any other discounts or offers. Excludes shoes, special orders, and apothecary. OFFER EXPIRES DECEMBER 15, 2015.




Take 20% off any one regularly priced item. Exclusions apply.* *Must present this coupon to receive credit. One coupon per customer. May not be combined with any other discounts or offers. Excludes shoes, special orders, and apothecary. OFFER EXPIRES DECEMBER 15, 2015.

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M Penner guide The look of Milan


years of fashion Whether you’re a hard-core fashionista or simply an admirer of beauty, you’ll enjoy Nathalie Herschdorfer’s Coming Into Fashion: A Century of Photography at Condé Nast (Prestel, $65). This celebration of fashion photography, drawn from a museum exhibition, brings together some of the finest work from that publishing house’s legendary archives and the best of New York, Paris and Milan. Via the volume’s 208 images you’ll look through the lenses of renowned photographers and witness how the art of fashion photography has evolved—and how it has reflected change in society. (Among chapter titles are “The Golden Age” and “The New Wave.”) Early Vogue and Vanity Fair covers recall styles of a bygone era that feels very remote—yet also evokes a timeless elegance that speaks eloquently to us today.

You can’t count to Eleventy, but it’s a brand you can count on. Born in the fashion and design epicenter, Milan, Italy, in 2006 as a small line of polo shirts, it has expanded and gained international prominence with collections of meticulously crafted, easy-to-wear apparel. Eleventy has been likened to Brunello Cucinelli—but with prices that will leave you extra cash to gas up your Italian sports car. Eleventy’s spring 2016 men’s collection launches on the Heart Of Fashion runway and will be available for purchase exclusively at M PENNER.

Linked in?

Wear your heart on your sleeve if you must, but on your cuff wear Tateossian. This brand, named for London-based entrepreneur Robert Tateossian—“the king of cuff links”—now lends a touch of luxury to smart dressers in 71 nations. “Luxury is all about excellence, uniqueness and integrity,” says Tateossian, who began his career as a financier but switched to designing jewelry and accessories. What graces the wrist may not be life’s most earthshaking issue, but since life is short, why not put a little imagination there? “The first cuff link I created was a nut and bolt in sterling silver,” Tateossian recalls. Today his designs feature skulls, clocks, thermometers, match sticks, paper clips and interlocking gears. There’s even a bull-and-bear pair and a miniature casino-style yes-and-no “decision maker”—amid hundreds of others. This decision’s an easy one. Stop in at M PENNER and “link in” with a bit of luxury. fall / winter 2015

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M Penner guide The perfect tee

Majestic Filatures’ founders Roland Chelly and Franck Ellia have created an entire brand around the goal of giving this wardrobe staple a certain je ne sais quoi. All prototypes that make up the line are handcrafted in a Paris atelier, and the collection is fashioned from an exclusive knit blend that combines silk, cashmere, cotton, linen and other deluxe natural fibers. Lucky for you, this very European brand is available in only a select few U.S. stores, including M PENNER. Come in and feel the difference for yourself—we guarantee you’ll never go back to 100 percent cotton again.

A new way with whiskey

If you’re still drinking your whiskey “straight,” it’s time to mix it up. Literally. The world’s most masculine beverage has made its way onto mixed-drinks menus across the country. “Whiskey’s pleasures are diverse and delicious,” notes Warren Bobrow, author of Whiskey Cocktails. “And much to the surprise of traditionalists, it’s a versatile spirit that’s extremely adaptable when it comes to mixology.” Here, we present Bobrow’s Robert Burns Cocktail, a tipple that honors Scotland’s most famous poet. Every sip is pure elegance, whether it’s served straight up or in a martini glass with a flamed orange zest twist. That said, if you’re a “wee tim’rous beastie,” as Burns himself wrote, steer clear: This cocktail is not for the faint of heart. If you can handle it, though, it’s a truly luxurious way to start an autumn evening. The Robert Burns Cocktail n 2 oz. Scotch whisky n ¾ oz. Italian vermouth, such as Carpano Antica n Dash of orange bitters n Dash of absinthe n Orange zest twist (optional) Fill a cocktail shaker three-quarters with ice. Pour all the liquid ingredients over the ice. Stir gently to combine. Strain this into a martini glass. Singe the orange zest by holding it firmly behind a lit match and pinching it to release its natural citrus oils. (Be careful to spritz the citrus oils into the glass.)

The albums that weren’t What’s your fave Beatles record—Rubber Soul? Sergeant Pepper? Primal Colors? That’s a trick question, of course; while the first two titles made rock history, the third died aborning one day at George Harrison’s house in ’68. That’s one of the insider tidbits you’ll pick up in the book, The Greatest Albums You’ll Never Hear: Unreleased Recordings By the World’s Greatest Artists, edited by Bruno MacDonald (Cassell, $24.99). From the Beach Boys’ reputedly brilliant Smile in 1967 to U2’s unreleased Songs of Ascent in 2010, this is an irresistible account of the music that would be part of the sound track of your life if only it, you know, existed. The book is colorfully illustrated with might-have-been album covers. And in the prevailing “what-you-see-ain’t-what-you-get” spirit, the editor confesses right off that the title’s a friendly semi-fib. Such is the mania of music mavens for digging up old half-finished stuff, he explains, that “some of these you will hear if you have no objection to bootlegging.”

From Italy with love

In the hands of the Italian luxury knitwear house Fabiana Filippi, delicate fibers such as silk, cashmere and fine-gauge merino wool become garments with a special lightness, fluidity and grace. Soft to the touch, FF’s sophisticated, super-comfortable fashions are artfully designed to flatter the female form—thanks to the two brothers who started the company in 1985. (It’s named for a daughter of one of them; she’s now part of the design team.) The brand’s signature muted palette (off-white, beige, taupe, grey) returns for the fall in a wide-ranging collection that includes shearling vests and coats, boxy capes, long cardigans and wide-leg pants. Your M PENNER sales associate can help you browse the selection.


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M Penner guide Casual luxury

Your work wardrobe is the best it can be. Now it’s time to take your after-hours attire to the next level—with the “casual luxury collection” by Ermenegildo Zegna. It’s a unique Made-toMeasure line that goes beyond suits to include jackets and blazers, cashmere knitwear (with your name emblazoned on the inside label or your initials embroidered along the sweater hemline), trench coats, winter jackets and leather outerwear. And M PENNER is one of the few retailers in the country that has been invited to offer this exclusive line to its customers. Find out more at the store.

Timeless leather

Moore & Giles has been in business since the Great Depression, but it wasn’t until January 2007 that the company stepped into the retail spotlight with the launch of a line of gorgeous leather bags and accessories. The comprehensive collection—which includes travel bags, portfolios, briefcases and wallets—showcases the inherent beauty and timeless appeal of its fine natural leathers. Stop by M PENNER today and let us introduce you to Moore & Giles.

The A-Z List

With dozens of brands to choose from, you’ll always find what you’re looking for at M PENNER. See if you don’t find your favorites in the list below. Then visit the store for a shopping experience you’ll love. AG Jeans alexANDRA DE CURTIS Altea ANDERSON’S BELTS ANTIQUE JEWEL BOX AVANT TOI Boglioli Brunello Cucinelli Chan Luu Christopher Fischer Corneliani Creed CULTURATA Davek Umbrellas Elizabeth Irvine Elizabeth Martin Ermenegildo Zegna Eton Etro Eyebobs Fabiana Filippi Ferragamo Finamore Fratelli Rossetti Fuzzi Gardeur Gianetto GiGi New York Gravati Hanro


Henry Beguelin Heritage 34 HERNO Hiltl Hudson Jeans Hugo Boss Incotex Isaia JAMES PERSE JOHN VARVATOS Kiton L’AGENCE LBM 1911 Magnanni Majestic Paris Manready Mercantile Martin Dingman Mason’s Massimo Alba Matta Maui Jim Max Mara Weekend Metalli 925 Moore & Giles MZ WALLACE Pam & Gela Pantherella Paul & Shark Peserico Peter Millar

PT01 Robindira Unsworth Samuelsohn Santa Maria Novella Scojo Gels Strong Suit Subtle Luxury Suzi Roher Swims Tateossian Taylor & Tessier The Art of Shaving Trina Turk Trussini Tumi Uno de 50 VERONICA BEARD VK Nagrani W. Kleinberg Wurkin Stiffs Zanella Zanone Z Zegna

Ask Mr. Etiquette Murry penner explains how to sail through life without giving offense. I see pictures of Hollywood guys standing on the red carpet in tuxedos and sneakers. Is this crazy pairing now permissible, or is it an affront to polite society? —Stymied in Southside It’s both, because the answer depends on social context. Let’s say you’re wearing a funky tuxedo jacket with jeans to a casual party. Sneakers work just fine. But if you’re attending a black-tie affair, then you shouldn’t stray too far from the norm of black calfskin lace-up shoes with NO ornamentation. How far can you stray? Black silk lace-ups with calfskin

trina turk

trim are OK, or, if you must let your freak flag fly, embroidered velvet slippers.

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In the world of men’s fashion, the pièce de résistance of shows for buyers occurs twice a year at the Fortezza da Basso in Florence, italy. Pitti Uomo is where designers bring their best and is reputed as the leading fashion fair in the world. From product to parties to people watching, Pitti stands in a league of its own. With great delight, we were joined on our most recent trip by our three sons, Ryan, Josh, and Jeremy. And, yes, we had a ball!


Left to right, from top: The Eton party. Opening ceremony with Florentine football in Piazza Santa Croce. We call these the Pitti Posers—the models and bloggers who sit around waiting to be photographed. Salute! from the Penners! This “tie blanket” is from Marzullo, one of the finest tie makers in the world. Marzullo debuts at M PENNER next spring. Great parties. Brunello Cucinelli exhibit. Gianetto Portofino shirtmakers.


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Listen Up!

Rhiannon Giddens

That’s not a typo. Australian native Nicky Murphy calls himself Chet Faker as an homage to the jazz trumpeter and vocalist Chet Baker. An electronic musician, Faker uses multi-track layering and echoes of early house music to produce an infectious yet mellow sound. His vocals have an emotive, slightly spaced-out quality that can put audiences in a happy trance. This is danceable party music. It’s also baby-making music. Play it with caution.

The co-founder and leader of the Carolina Chocolate Drops says her calling is to breathe new life into old songs. Rhiannon Giddens does it remarkably well—with the Chocolate Drops; as a member of the New Basement Tapes, the T-Bone Burnett project that set rediscovered Bob Dylan lyrics to music; and on her first solo album, released this year. While she switches with ease between banjo and fiddle, Giddens’ main instrument is her glorious voice. She performs songs by Nina Simone, Dolly Parton and obscure folk singers and blueswomen of the early 20th century, as well as tunes of her own. Trained in opera, Giddens can deliver a song in any style with utter conviction.

The album: Built on Glass

Deeper dives: “Melt” and

The album:

“1998,” two songs from Built on Glass that will take up residence in your head

Go-to song: “Shake Sugaree,” a cover of an

Whether you prefer to stream on Spotify or still feel compelled to “own it” via iTunes, this new music is essential listening. By Mark Dowden Chet Faker

Go-to song: “No Diggity,” his 2011 cover of a Blackstreet song from the ’90s

Tomorrow Is My Turn

old Elizabeth Cotton tune Deeper dives: “Cornbread and Butterbeans” with the Carolina Chocolate Drops and “Forever Young” as a duet with Iron & Wine

Marti Jones

A musical chameleon, Marti Jones has written and recorded in various styles, from jangle pop to Southern-style soul, since the mid-80s. She took time off to raise a daughter with her husband, the producer Don Dixon, and in recent years she has focused more on painting than performing. But last year saw the release of a new album consisting entirely of original bossa nova tunes. They prove to be the perfect vehicles for Jones’ light, clear voice, as refreshing as a caipirinha on the beach. The album:

You’re Not the Bossa Me Go-to song:

“You Solve Me”

Deeper dives: “Black Coffee in Bed,” Jones’ cover of the Squeeze classic; “I Love the Sound of Breaking Glass”

Leon Bridges

Leon Bridges was working as a dishwasher, writing songs and singing at open-mic nights around Fort Worth, when he released two demo songs on Soundcloud in late 2014; Columbia Records signed him in December, and he soon found himself touring with Sharon Van Etten. Bridges’ sound has been said to resemble the ’60s soul and gospel stylings of Otis Redding and Sam Cooke. Certainly he sings from the heart, and you’re likely to find yourself singing along. The album: Coming Home Go-to song: “Coming Home”

Deeper dives: “Lisa Sawyer” and “Brown Skin Girl”

Rediscovered with pleasure Each of these dozen songs is a classic in its genre and of its day. This is a fairly chill mix, punctuated by some rawness (courtesy of Heartless Bastards) and energetic high points (The Stones! The Kinks!). Try this playlist during cocktail hour or on a country drive. “This Tornado Loves You” by Neko Case “Shine” by Daniel Lanois “Any Major Dude Will Tell You” by Steely Dan “I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel” by Studio Rio and Nina Simone


“Sway” by Heartless Bastards “My Buddy” by Chet Baker “Out of Time” by The Rolling Stones “Lover, You Should’ve Come Over” by Jeff Buckley

“Do You Realize?” by The Flaming Lips “Pueblo Nuevo” by Buena Vista Social Club “Feels Like Rain” by John Hiatt “Victoria” by The Kinks

Nina Simone

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with Featuring our Prix-Fixe menus:






TABLERESTAURANTS.COM 1800 Post Oak Blvd, Suite 6110 | Houston, TX 77056 | 713.439.1000 For information on group dining, contact events@tablerestaurants.com

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Unrelenting power, elegantly harnessed. The new Continental GT Speed. For more information call 713.850.1530 or visit www.bentleyhouston.com


The name 'Bentley' and the 'B' in wings device are registered trademarks. Š 2015 Bentley Motors, Inc. Model shown: Continental GT Speed.

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luxury, meet

power Beneath the elegant exterior of Bentley’s Mulsanne beats the heart of a world-class race car. By Luca Sumberac


eauty. Class. Poise. Think of Bentley Motors, and those are some of the words that come to mind. However, what most people don’t realize is that the automotive institution also has deep roots in speed, power and racing. Enter the Bentley Mulsanne, a luxurious limousine-like sedan with raw power that harks back to Bentley’s rich history of automotive excellence. It’s no coincidence that the vehicle derives its name from the renowned


John m penner craig

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Rarely if ever in automotive history has such an agile dynamo also offered such regal comfort.

This page: The Mulsanne brings unmistakable grandeur to the road, with zesty performance ing down the Autobahn at speeds straightaway on the legendary Circuit that belies its aristocratic luxury. Its handcrafted interior reflects meticulous craftsmanship—in well over 100 mph. de La Sarthe, home to one of the most one option, Apple iPad workstations with Internet access are integrated into retractable “picThe exterior features the iconic races in auto sports—24 Hours nic tables” in the rear cabin. Opposite, from top: an optional classic “flying B” hood ornament, a 6.75-litre twin-turbocharged V8 engine and a wheel crafted from a single piece of aluminum. unmistakable Bentley headlights, of Le Mans. A race, by the way, that a beautiful polished stainless steel Bentley has won six times. Even more grille and unique 20˝ alloy wheels (21˝ alloys available as an upgrade). Want impressive? Bentley ranks fifth in the total number of Le Mans wins, placing to ensure your Mulsanne’s uniqueness? How about some customization? behind Jaguar, Audi, Ferrari and Porsche. Spring for the exterior accoutrements available with the Mulliner Driving Let’s be clear. The Mulsanne is not a supercar; it’s not even a sports Specification option, which adds “Flying B” wing vents and the iconic “Flycar. It’s something more. It melds the best of luxury, comfort and perforing B” radiator mascot. Still not enough? With more than 100 exterior paint mance cues and wraps them up in one of the classiest bows on the market. colors, 24 interior hide colors or a bespoke option in which you’ll work with Spy the Mulsanne (consider yourself lucky if you do) and you’re instantly Bentley to create a custom color scheme, there are plenty of combinations struck by its contours—the elegant yet powerful lines emanate regalness. that will make your Mulsanne like no other—crucial if you plan on pulling And like the most stately of kings, it commands attention. After all, it’s up to a swanky gala. big—Henry VIII big. At just over 18 feet long and almost 6,000 pounds, So what powers this three-ton piece of art? Credit goes to a 6.75-liter, it’s the type of car you’d imagine seeing on Rodeo Drive shepherding twin-turbo V8 that produces 505 bhp and 752 lb. ft of torque. All that power sheiks, earls, viscounts and baronesses on extravagant shopping trips, or means the Mulsanne is capable of going from 0 to 60 in 5.1 seconds and can chauffeuring Hollywood royalty during a weekend getaway in Monaco. reach a top speed of 184 mph! Those are impressive numbers for a car that And herein lies its genius: It’s also easy to imagine the Mulsanne scream-


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weighs more than a Chevy Suburban. And inside? Whether you’ll be enjoying the Mulsanne in the driver’s seat, riding shotgun or taking up the rear, you’ll be greeted by an interior second to none. For starters, it’s dripping in leather—16 cowhides, to be precise, carefully curated to avoid any defects. Complementing the leather is one continuous veneer that wraps around the entire interior. Take your pick of Burr Walnut, Dark Stained Burr Walnut or Piano Black. If those options don’t catch your eye, you’ll be able to choose from eight other veneers. There are plenty of amenities on board—12v sockets, 14 speakers standard (audiophiles may want to upgrade to the 20-speaker Naim system) and programmable settings to adjust for different drivers. Oh, and let’s not forget the option of adding a frosted-glass bottle cooler with accompanying champagne flutes (ideal for those who prefer to be chauffeured)! At the end of the day, the Mulsanne won’t break any track records, it doesn’t get great gas mileage (11 mpg city/18 mpg highway) and its poster might not adorn the walls of 12-year-old car lovers. But none of that matters. It doesn’t need blistering speed. It doesn’t need exotic looks. It’s built for enjoyment of a higher class. The Mulsanne stands out without even trying—and that’s what makes this car so special.

The Mulsanne at a Glance

base price $306,425

Weight 5,919 lbs.

Dimensions length 18 feet, 3 inches, wheelbase 10 feet, 8 inches

Drive rear-wheel

Engine 6.75-litre twin-turbocharged V8 with cam phasing and variable displacement

Gearbox 8-speed automatic

Suspension Air springs with continuous damping control; four driver-selectable settings

Output 505 bhp @ 4200 rpm, 752 lb.-ft. torque @ 1750 rpm

Top speed 184 mph

0 to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds

Weight-to-power ratio 11.8 lbs./HP

Closest competitor Rolls Royce Ghost Series II

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Power brands Up & Comers New Discoveries They’re all part of the new


Photography by Cody Bess Photographed at Hotel Granduca Houston, www.granducahouston.com

The stunning Hotel Granduca proved the perfect setting for models Suzie Ford and Landon Wassem to showcase some of our favorite fall/winter looks from (in order of appearance) Hugo Boss, Kiton, Ermenegildo Zegna, Altea, Brunello Cucinelli, Isaia, W. Kleinberg, Maui Jim, Etro, Corneliani, Gianetto Portofino, Mason’s, Gravati, Herno, Majestic Filatures, AG Jeans, Colombo, Veronica Beard, Henry Beguelin, Eton, Fabiana Filippi, Peter Millar, Culturata, Hiltl, Gigi Handbags, Samuelsohn, Fuzzi, Finamore, Moore & Giles, Tumi, L’Agence, Boglioli, Alberto, Charvet, Pam & Gela, Hudson, and Peserico. Jewelry throughout is from Metalli 925, Chan Luu, Tateossian, The Antique Jewel Box, Robindira Unsworth, Margo Morrison, Fig Tree, and Uno de 50.


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the romance of


With beauty, beaches and the bossa nova, this South American metropolis stirs the passions.


By Everett Potter

or some destinations, the arrival of the Summer Olympics would be the biggest news ever. But it’s just one more feather in the cap of next year’s host city, Rio de Janeiro, whose “Carnival,” the world’s largest, draws 2 million revelers into the streets each spring. You probably know Rio even if you’ve never visited. Movies delight in the art deco statue of Christ that presides over the harbor, rising more than 100 feet from its perch on a 2,300-foot mountain called


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The idea of building a large statue atop Corcovado was first suggested in the mid1850s. It came to fruition in 1931, when Christ the Redeemer made its debut, arms outstretched as a symbol of peace.

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This page, Cariocas enjoy a game of football on Ipanema beach. Opposite, from top, the tranquil pool lounge at the Hotel Santa Teresa, a perfect place to relax and have a drink or a light meal; Selarón’s Steps in Lapa, a colorful tiled stairway created over the course of 20 years by the late Chilean artist Jorge Selarón; a Zen-like suite at the boutique Hotel Santa Teresa.


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Corcovado. And if you’ve seen images of the conical mountains, the undulating coastline and the colorful architectural heritage of the city’s 450 years, you realize Rio looks like something the surrealist artist Salvador Dalí might have conceived. But you simply must come in the flesh, not so much to learn as to luxuriate—in the sights, the sun, the tastes, the beat. You’ll keep returning. Along fabled strands like Copacabana and Ipanema, high-rises face the surf of Guanabara Bay. The hippest of the 6 million Cariocas—Rio residents—can be seen going from apartment to beach in nothing more than a skimpy black bathing suit and flip-flops, cell phones to their ears, wraparound designer shades de rigueur, their tans at a level of perfection most of us can only dream of. But above their neighborhoods rise mountains that are a patchwork of jungle and shantytowns known as favelas. Rio is stylish and hedonistic, but it’s also a big city, with some spots as glamorous as Paris and others as edgy as Detroit, often within a few blocks. To experience the world’s most mannered beach rituals, choose cool Ipanema and hang out at the area marked Posto 9, the epicenter of beach hip. Styleconscious Cariocas set up their umbrellas alongside the thundering surf, but surprisingly few ever swim, as riptides can be fierce. Instead, they preen and socialize, in a display of exhibitionism and vanity of the highest order. Women wear tiny bathing suits known as fio dental—dental floss—while men favor an abbreviated Speedo-like style called a sunga. The hyper-fit play volleyball as well as the uber-athletic hybrid of soccer and volleyball called futevolei. If you’ve spent the day with “The Girl from Ipanema” playing in your head, grab a chopp, a Brazilian draft beer, at Garota de Ipanema on Rua Vinicius de Moraes, where Tom Jobim and Vinicius de Moraes penned the legendary song in 1962. It introduced the world to the sound called bossa nova or “new beat.” With a few well-chosen words of Portuguese, you can handle Rio’s taxi drivers and have them take you all over the “Cidade Marvilhosa”—marvelous city. The Chácara do Céu museum in Santa Teresa is the former home of industrialist Raymundo Ottoni de Castro Maya. He collected Brazilian, European and Asian art, but his modernist house is equally fascinating. Then head to Praça Tiradentes, a public square in the city’s center, ditch the cab and walk to Real Gabinete Portugues de Leitura, fall / winter 2015

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a 19th-century library whose main reading room is a veritable cathedral of books reaching to the sky. Walk a few blocks to a pedestrian-only street called Gonçalves-Dias and step into the magnificent eatery known as Confeitaria Colombo, a riot of Art Nouveau mirrors and stained glass from 1894. Grab a seat at one of the marble tables, order a hearts-of-palm salad, and follow it with a cafezinho, Brazilian coffee, and traditional Portuguese sweets. You’ll find the brightest star for lodging in the hilly Santa Teresa neighborhood. It’s the Hotel Santa Teresa, which was formerly a 19th-century fazenda, or ranch. This Relais & Châteaux property boasts high style and amazing views of the bay. Inside there are 44 suites decorated with folk art from the Amazon and mid-century modern pieces by Brazilian designer Sergio Rodrigues. Simple fourposter beds and a Zen-like minimalism are hallmarks of the rooms. There is a slate swimming pool, perfect for a sweltering Rio day, and a neighborhood that has in the past decade evolved from edgy to hip. The fazenda’s former senzala (slave quarters), now houses the lively Bar dos Descasados. When it comes to dining, nearby is Aprazível, which has fine views, a welcoming garden and a menu that highlights Brazilian seafood, with dishes such as orange-infused tropical fish with coconut rice and roasted plantains. Zuka is more cutting-edge, offering fusion cuisine that takes Brazilian ingredients and blends them with European staples— rack of lamb with passion fruit, for example. Zazá keeps the emphasis on Asian accents, and diners lounge on throw pillows—try the grilled namorado (perch) served with caramelized plantains. Then it’s time to go out. Cariocas say it doesn’t matter whether you are rich or poor in Lapa, because everyone comes to this neighborhood for the same things: music, dancing and a well-made caipirinha, the national cocktail of sliced limes, sugar, ice and cachaca, a sugar-cane liquor. Among the best clubs are Rio Scenarium, an eccentric boîte that’s jammed with antiques as well as partygoers and a live band playing samba or chorino. You can also dance and hear music at Carioca da Gema, which began the Lapa revival and is filled with bossa nova lovers every night. I also like Centro Cultural Carioca. A former dance hall, this two-story space has samba lessons downstairs while in the vast, windowed upstairs hall, an array of performers play various styles of Brazilian music. The blending of music and food is part of the extraordinary melding of cultures that defines Rio de Janeiro, one of the world’s liveliest and most surprising cities.


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This page, dancing at Carnival, a world-famous, five-day celebration that takes place 40 days before Easter. Opposite, from top, drummers getting into the samba groove during Carnival; one of the the many colorful, architecturally rich streets in Rio’s Bohemian Santa Teresa neighborhood; riding a cable car up to iconic Sugar Loaf Mountain, which offers stunning views of the city.

Hotel Santa Teresa +55 21 3380 0200 reservas@santateresahotel.com santa-teresa-hotel.com

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Scandinavian... but born in the USA

For incomparable Eton shirts, there are other stops along the way.


ounded by husband-and-wife team David and Annie Pettersson in the village of Gånghester, Sweden, Eton has been synonymous with quality men’s shirts since 1928—but Eton hasn’t always been its name. The original name, Shirt Factory Special, changed in 1948 following a visit by the two entrepreneurs to England. “They fell in love with Eton, a

charming English town with a storied history, and a new brand moniker was born,” says Chris Donohue, Director of Sales in North America. Today the company’s luxe shirts, ties, scarves and pocket squares are sold around the world, yet this still partly family-owned operation continues to pride itself on superior garments that take up to six months to craft.

This international story actually begins in America, as 90 percent of Eton’s extra-long staple (ELS) cotton comes from San Joaquin County in California. (The rest is grown in Egypt.) “ELS, which accounts for only 3 percent of the world’s cotton, has superior fiber qualities, such as stronger filaments and higher torsion thread, which is why we use it exclusively,” Donohue explains.

After harvest, raw fibers are shipped to Italy, where they’re spun and woven by some of the world’s most highly skilled artisans. Albini Group, located in Albino, Italy, is famous for its looming, and Eton is its largest partner. “Besides conceiving new patterns and color combinations for our shirts and ties, we also constantly invent novel weaving techniques that continuously revolutionize the market,” says Donohue.


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In Switzerland, all shirts next go through a specialized—and top-secret—finishing process, wherein scientifically trained workers actually alter the cotton’s molecular structure to make it more wrinkle-resistant. Most manufacturers try to prevent creases with a formaldehyde-based topical treatment that coats fibers, but that method has two drawbacks: Sealing cotton means it can’t “breathe,” with the result that clothes tend to trap heat, and the substance washes off after several dry-cleaning cycles. Says Donohue: “While that procedure takes four days to complete, our finish is accomplished over the course of four weeks.”

Cutting, sewing and trimming of Eton garments happen in Eastern Europe, at exclusive production facilities bordering the Black Sea. It’s an exceptionally controlled 40-step process that alone takes one month to execute. “By remaining hyper-focused on shirts, ties and other accessories, we’ve been able to perfect our manufacturing process since Eton’s earliest days,” says Donohue.

At a time when many clothing manufacturers use the quickest production methods to meet bottom-line pressures, Eton opts for the refinement that only an investment of time can provide. And while many competitors outsource some operations, again to save money, Eton owns its entire international production process. It is therefore able to control all aspects of the creation of each shirt, assuring unparalleled quality. —Francesca Moisin fall / winter 2015

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some like it


By Michael Hiller

once a year, a tiny town shows the world how to do chili—alias “texas red.”


erlingua, Texas, population 58, isn’t much to look at—a dusty ghost town of caliche roads, prickly ocotillo and sagebrush tangles. But on the first Saturday of November each year, this patch of desert west of Big Bend National Park bustles with thousands of chili fans and hundreds of cooks who arrive to compete in the town’s world-famous Chili Appreciation Society International Chili Championship. Almost overnight, the air fills with the scent of wood smoke, too much beer and simmering pots of Texas red. It’s a rowdy crowd that shares a love for country music, the Lone Star State and chili con carne, a spicy dish born on the cattle trails near San Antonio whose primary ingredients are red chiles and meat. Every other ingredient, from tomatoes to onions to seasonings, is subject to intense debate. But on one thing every Texas chili-head agrees: Real chili contains no beans. Use beans in your chili at this cook-off and you’ll be instantly disqualified. Frank Tolbert, a journalist and historian who was considered the state’s leading authority on chili until his death in 1984,

regarded beans as heretical. “Heaven help us one and all,” he wrote in response to a Yankee cook who espoused a beany recipe. “You might as well throw in some puffed rice, or a handful of shredded alfalfa, or a few maraschino cherries!” A line from the Terlingua Chili Cook-Off ’s anthem says: “If you know beans about chili, you know that chili has no beans.” Texans are no more bashful about chili than about anything else. “Chili concocted outside of Texas is a weak, apologetic imitation of the real thing,” insisted Lyndon Johnson. In 1977, the legislature proclaimed chili the “state dish,” declaring, “The only real ‘bowl of red’ is that prepared by Texans.” Of course, not everyone agrees. Nontraditionalists across the U.S. not only dare to include beans, but also like to put their own spin on this classic, adding turkey, pork, even spaghetti to their chili pots. Some say those dishes are more properly called stews or soups or casseroles. And some call them delicious. But in Terlingua, they won’t call them chili.

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malbec’s comeback

This Argentine varietal has regained its reputation for subtlety and balance—and hard times actually helped. By Josh Sens


on’t cry for Malbec, Argentina! The truth is, the wine for which that country is best known came through the economic crash of the late 1990s and early 2000s. It didn’t just survive; it flourished. Over time, the downturn had an unexpected upside, as runaway inflation corrected an imbalance in the market. In the sour climate, it no longer made sense to bottle low-end Malbecs because it was pretty much impossible to turn a profit on them. So vintners slashed production of their two-buck chuck—the subpar swill they’d been pumping out for years, staining Malbec’s image around the world. “So much cheap stuff had been getting out there

This label announces a subtle, widely suitable varietal—a far cry from the not-so-distinguished table wines that recently diluted the distinction of the Malbec name.

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Clockwise from top left: Winemaker Paul Hobbs with Bertrand Vigouroux, whose family has produced Malbec in France for 150 years; wine caves at Argentina’s Pulenta Estate winery; the wine-making Pulenta family: Hugo, Don Antonio, Eduardo Jr. and Eduardo; the Viña Cobos winery in western Argentina.

early aftermath of the crash it gushed out in even greater torrents. Much of that it was hurting Malbec’s reputation,” says Paul Hobbs, a veteran wineit was over-oaked and over-extracted, with all the subtlety of a sledgehammaker and wine importer. “It was a serious problem. But the Argentine mer. Some of it was fraudulently labeled. economy solved it for us.” “It got so bad that there were ‘Malbecs’ on the market that didn’t contain As it happens, Hobbs lent a hand as well. A former winemaker for Robert Mondavi, Hobbs has roots in Malbec that run decades deep. He first turned any actual Malbec,” Hobbs says. “We used to joke that they were born with a birth certificate of Bonarda [a less nuanced grape varietal] but his mind to it in the late 1980s, when he traveled to Argenwere traveling with a Malbec passport.” tina and was struck by the varietal’s vast untapped potenMeanwhile, Hobbs kept at it, and when the economic tial. Though Malbec grew abundantly around Mendoza, tasting notes crash crushed the low end of the market, the Malbecs he the country’s largest wine-making region, its quantity far had championed came to the fore. Hobbs has since been outstripped its quality. Most Argentine Malbec wound up Cobos Malbec 2011 $210 joined by a growing number of Malbec producers who are in inexpensive blends known as “criollas”—ho-hum table A dark, elegant wine that opens with out to show the grape for all that it can be. Among them wines with not much to recommend them other than their hints of coffee and caramel, but are wineries such as Riglos and Pulenta Estate, in the bargain-basement price. Hobbs envisioned a different fate plays out on the palate with bright berry and cherry notes. rolling folds of the Mendoza region, on terrain that inches for Malbec, a noble French-born grape that he believed toward the Andes foothills, where the climate and the soil just needed to be treated with more dignity. Pulenta Estate give rise to complex fruit. Using old-vine fruit grown by Nicolas Catena, one Malbec 2011 $29 Like Hobbs, the vintners on these properties lean of Argentina’s most respected vintners, Hobbs began a The first impression: French oak toward low-tech practices, a minimalist approach that deep dive into Malbec, applying Old World practices to and mulling spices. But those wintry lets the winning traits of the grape shine through. Their New World wine production. The result was Malbecs of notes make way for a springtime symphony of lavendar and vintages demonstrate impressive range—some lean and unusual refinement, not the high-alcohol brutes that so honeysuckle, followed by a clean supple, others round-bodied and robust. And contrary to many consumers had come to know. plum-tinted finish. Malbec’s stubborn reputation as a varietal best suited to In 1999, Hobbs co-founded Viña Cobos, a Mendoza Riglos Gran steakhouse fare, these wines are strikingly food-friendly, winery, where he experimented with varied root stocks, Malbec 2012 pairing beautifully with sirloin, sure, but also with pasta, planting the varietal on new sites that showcased Malbec’s $35 seafood, curries and more. distinctive terroir. The wines he produced earned wideA juicy but balanced wine that never grows too jammy, it mingles “To a lot of people, it used to seem that Malbec had spread accolades for their bright notes and balance. But in floral flavors with a ripe minerality, a serious problem,” Hobbs says. “But the bigger problem the world of Malbec they were the exception, not the rule. and a just-right touch of tannins was, we didn’t really understand the grape.” Cheap Malbec still flooded the market, and in the tickles the tongue.


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welcome to our Home From our drink bar to our flat-screen TV, we designed the store to make you feel at home. Even our Made-to-Measure Room is casual and comfortable, with its roomy conference table.

Service Directory the

M Penner Personal Service

expertise A central part of the M PENNER experience is superlative service. When you need expert, individualized attention, you’ll get it—instantly and for as long as you want. Our knowledgeable staff is well versed in all of the brands we carry, the trends of the season and how to fit every body type. They stand ready to advise you on all matters of wardrobe and accessories.

abundant parking Houston’s a big city, and parking is often a challenge. At M PENNER we provide plenty of free parking, right at the front door.

As a family-owned business, we take a lot of pride in everything we do at M PENNER. We have the finest sales professionals that you will find anywhere, and our experienced tailoring staff works diligently to make sure that you look great. Our commitment to our customers goes beyond the sale. Service impacts every part of our business, and our goal is to constantly exceed your expectations. Here are some of the things we do to take care of you. Of course, special requests are always welcome!

made-to-measure service Exceptional fit is essential to impeccable style. We have a whole room created for you to design your own suits, sportcoats, shirts and trousers, where we will take your measurements and help you select fabrics, styles, buttons, etc. from the finest companies in the world.

Delivery We understand that sometimes it’s a challenge to get to the store to pick up your alterations. Just let us know when and where, and we’ll be happy to deliver them to you.

that’s a wrap! We’re here to make your life a little easier, remember? So, you pick the gift and we’ll take care of the wrapping on all non-sale purchases at M PENNER. Of course, all you have to do is ask and we’ll pick the gift out for you, too!

Closet Cleaning Sometimes it’s hard to part with old friends. We can help. When you shop for your new seasonal wardrobe, our sales associates will come to your home and let you know which items are worn or out of style, and suggest how to coordinate your existing clothes with new additions. We’ll even take your old clothes and donate them to a local charity on your behalf.

Picture This Sure, all of your new clothes look great at the store, but sometimes, once you get home, it’s hard to remember what goes with what. Just ask and we’ll be happy to photograph your ensembles.


Special Orders

Complimentary Alterations

Whether it’s a suit, sportcoat or a pair of shoes, if you can’t find what you’re looking for, just let us know. We’ll do our best to find it from one of our many resources.

Our reputation is sewn into every garment we sell. To make sure you always look your absolute best, we provide complimentary alterations on all non-sale items purchased at M PENNER. We even perform routine wardrobe maintenance: Should a button become loose or lost, we’ll be happy to replace it—and press your garment—while you wait.

shopping by appointment Just give us a call and we will pre-select clothing to meet your needs. Items will be ready to try on upon your arrival, during or after store hours. Can’t find the time to stop by? We’ll be happy to come by your home or office.

Brownies on Saturdays M PENNER brownies, made from a recipe passed down for generations, are required at all M PENNER family events. When we built the store in Uptown Park we added a kitchen so we could make them fresh for you every Saturday.

M Penner gift cards M PENNER gift cards are available in any denomination and can be purchased at the store or over the phone. Just give us the word and we’ll be happy to send them for you as well.

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Rediscover the truest sense of home. More than just a living space or an asset, home signifies everything that you value and that provides you distinct joy in life. When it comes to creating a sense of home for our clients, Boulevard Realty sees it as our duty to actively protect, promote, and preserve what’s best for the long term and for the greatest number of Houstonians. By doing this, we build a better quality of life and increase the value of our homes and neighborhoods. When it comes simply to finding the perfect home or selling your current home, we are 65+ trusted advisors who are redefining the value of a realtor.

7 1 3 . 8 6 2 . 1 6 0 0 | yo u r b l vd . c o m

For me, home is the ability to retreat from the challenges of a hard day’s work, sharing time with loved ones and having a sense of identity that is intrinsically tied to the community.

6 1 1 7 K i r b y D r. Houston, TX 77005

1 5 4 5 H e i g h t s B l vd. Houston, TX 77008


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look good, keep well

Oh, Joe!

A new study found that folks who drank four or more cups of caffeinated coffee (about two Grandes at Starbucks) had a 25 percent lower risk of developing melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer, over 10 years. Researchers theorize that something in the roasting process produces vitamins that may protect against UVB damage. —Journal of the National Cancer Institute

Go ahead, daydream


It might just help you multitask. Turns out daydreamers have a better working memory, which helps you retain and recall details— even in the midst of distractions.


—University of WisconsinMadison


Eat fruit, veggies first

Believe it or not, the first food you select from a buffet triggers what you’ll take next—and how much. So say researchers who studied 124 diners. Head to the salad and fruit first, and you’ll be less likely to sabotage your day’s eating. —Plos One

Cuff ’em

The only way to get a truly accurate blood pressure reading is to cuff both arms. When a person’s systolic pressure varies by 10 or more points between arms, the risk of heart attack or stroke increases 38 percent. Plus, a big difference between arms could be a sign of peripheral artery disease, or clogged arteries. —American Journal of Medicine


Spending this much time doing resistance training could improve your long-term memory by as much as 10 percent. —Acta Psychologica

The percentage increase in the number of men going to plastic surgeons for both surgical and nonsurgical procedures in 2015 thus far. —American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery

Beware the grouch

Did you know that a negative attitude can be passed along from one person to another just like the flu? Apparently, we mimic each other’s nonverbal cues, then internalize them, making them our own. Of course, we can’t always steer clear of a sourpuss, thus the best move: Do not engage. —University of Notre Dame

Beet it to low blood pressure

Drinking just one cup of beet juice every day can lower blood pressure in people with hypertension, according to recent research. Study participants’ systolic blood pressure (the top number, which measures the pressure in your arteries as your heart beats) dropped 8 points. Diastolic BP (the bottom number, which measures pressure between heartbeats) dropped 2 to 5 points. The reason? Beetroot contains high levels of nitrate, which the body converts to nitric oxide, which in turn improves blood flow and relaxes arteries. —Hypertension

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YOU’RE YOU’RE INVITED! INVITED! tickets ticketsavailable availableatatheartoffashion.com heartoffashion.com

OPENING OPENINGNIGHT NIGHT Wednesday, Wednesday,November November1818

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Profile for Wainscot Media

M Penner: Fall/Winter 2015  

M Penner: Fall/Winter 2015

M Penner: Fall/Winter 2015  

M Penner: Fall/Winter 2015