April Round Up

Spring has officially, finally, gloriously sprung here in New York, and we’ve been soaking up all the sunshine and ice cream and cherry blossoms we can get. All this warm weather has lured us up and out of our cozy dens — to the roof, to the theatre, to concerts, to brunch, to Philadelphia, to other boroughs, to all kinds of adventures. Zelda saw our beloved Houndmouth (sadly sans Katie Toupin, but still a rocking good time), Scout continued her Shakespeare binge (Are you following @saucyandoverbold? You should be following @saucyandoverbold.), and we both jammed out to the Avett Brothers, celebrated new pads and happy trails for various friends, and drank lots of cocktails with our squad. And now, with Thunder just behind us and our second annual Brooklyn Derby party a couple weeks ahead, we’re passing on over (eh? eh?) into full-blown Kentucky mania and raising a glass (preferably containing an ice cold julep) to the adventures still to come.

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What We’re Doing: What a doozy of a month, y’all. Zelda made a list of New York books to read and did some musing on her rooftop and this city she now finds herself calling home. Scout got all warm and fuzzy about her self-made family of New York friends and reviewed our new and improved hometown museum, the Speed. We made bourbon ball cupcakes and Kentucky Lillies, got pumped up to go out, and drew inspiration from the Bluegrass State. Looking back, it seems home was the theme of our April this year: both the one we left behind (but will never forget, and continue to claim) back by the Twin Spires of Churchill Downs, and the one we have made for ourselves here, in the shadow of the Chrysler Building.

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What We’re Listening To: The warm weather has New York emerging from hibernation, putting on real pants, and venturing out to paint the town. As we all know, a great night starts with a great pump-up jam, and so for this month’s playlist we brought together some of our favorite fun, kickass, sexy getting ready songs. From Watsky to Mika to Rihanna to Yelle (and some two-named artists in between), these tracks have us dancing around kitchens, hairbrush microphone in hand, and then heading out on the town…or straight to our couch. Cause hey, you do you. Sometimes all you need is a party of one.

We also love: Bless your heart, April, you brought us so many delights for our eardrums to feast on! We can hardly believe the musical bounty of the past few weeks: The LumineersCleopatra, Sam Beam and Jesca Hoop’s Love Letter for Fire, Tegan and Sara’s Love You to Death (well, at least two singles’ worth), Ingrid Nilsen and Cat Valdes’s new podcast “Ladies Who Lunch,” plus a brand-new track from those brothers named Avett, a preview of awesome things to come on True Sadness this June. And then, of course, there’s Lemonade.

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What We’re Watching: Unbreakable, we’re alive, damnit! Kimmy Schmidt is back, and we are very excited (though we were a bit disappointed about the lack of a Pinot Noir redux). Kimmy makes us feel better about our lives, her positivity radiating through several new New York City adventures: Everyone needs therapy, Titus finds love, Lillian fights gentrification, Jacqueline becomes a sort of okay person! Scout also binged all of Amazon’s Catastrophe, which was fantastic. Her take away: basically You’re the Worst if Gretchen and Jimmy had met 10 years later. Also, Rob Delaney is really tall — like, giant.

We also love: This video of Gavin Creel and Aaron Tveit at Miscast, doing their take on “Take Me or Leave Me” from Rent (also these Broadway babies slaying Hamilton’s  “The Schuyler Sisters”). After a lackluster beginning to the season, Scout’s favorite show, The 100, is finally back to where it should be, and she can’t wait for the last few episodes. Zelda’s over the moon that The Mindy Project finally returned to her life. And we got gripping finales for iZombie, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (don’t even get us started on how big an idiot Greg is).

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What We’re Reading: This profile of the Queen of Soul herself, Ms. Aretha Franklin (The New Yorker). This peak behind the scenes of the Smithsonian’s Museum of Natural History archives (BuzzFeed). This trend piece (yes, eugh, we know, but this one actually speaks to our souls) on how staying out just may be the new going in (T Magazine). This tribute to the Bard, ole Billy Shakes, dead 400 years this month (The New York Times). This portrait of the 93-year-old queen of Creole cuisine, Leah Chase (The New Yorker). This defense of the matzah meal pancake (Lucky Peach). This look at the so-far-seemingly-awesome new Doctor Who companion, and why she’s such good news (Vanity Fair). This guide to throwing the perfect, perfectly French dinner party (AFAR). And in books, Scout finally read (and loved) Stiff, Mary Roach’s hilarious and engrossing look at history and misadventures of human cadavers, while Zelda is still reeling from the enchanting saga that is Annie Proulx’s The Shipping News (book hangovers are real, y’all).

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What We’re Eating: This month, we tested out theory that everything that can be put into cupcake form, should be — Derby style! Our bourbon pecan cupcakes tasted like Kentucky and Derby and home, and will definitely be making the menu at our annual shindig next month. With the weather finally warming up, we’re visiting all our favorite outdoor spots, because nothing says spring in Brooklyn like eating outside. Scout’s new favorite? The new taco truck that opened across the street from her apartment building, which is probably dangerous. And the end of this month has been less about what we are eating and more about what we are not, as it’s Passover, Scout’s favorite Jewish holiday, despite having to avoid her favorite food: bread.

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What We’re Drinking: In honor of early May festivities (we’ve said it enough, you know what we’re talking about now, right?), Zelda shook up her version of the Oaks Lilly — the mint julep alternative for those that don’t like dark liquor (bless their hearts). After a trying trip to gather all the ingredients (three different stores!?!), this easy, tasty drink was perfect, and for once we had the correct glasses for serving. Still, we’re stocking Zelda’s kitchen with Bulleit and Old Forester to make ample amounts of our favorite minty stand-by come Derby Day. In other beverage news, Scout made it to The Sampler’s April bottle share. Her favorite find? Always fantastic brewery Hill Farmstead’s saison, Edith. Also: ICED COFFEE SEASON IS HERE! Time to channel our inner Nancy Botwin. Preferably on a rooftop.

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What’s On Our Wishlist: This month’s wishlist is mostly for Derby gear. We need this, to make crushed ice and have the perfect juleps. Also this, this, and this to properly adorn our heads for the big day. And we wouldn’t say no to these geographically-themed tees from ShopLocal KY, or to this 4/20 spin on Kentucky for Kentucky’s classic Y’all shirt, made of Kentucky hemp.

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Photos via: POPOPTIQCOMINGSOONBUZZFEEDShopLocalKY

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