Ali Francis
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Bon Appétit

Bon Appétit

Writing, Photography, Production, Social Media

I contracted in house for Bon Appétit during the launch of their new vertical—Healthyish. I wrote, edited, shot, and produced various pieces and series including: product reviews, trends, profiles, features, and op-eds. I also managed their Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram content.

PHOTO BY HENRY HARGREAVES

PHOTO BY HENRY HARGREAVES

Why We're Obsessed with Peri Peri Seasoning

The morning after a winter snowstorm is perhaps the best time of year to visit Jack’s Wife Freda. The tables at 50 Carmine Street are unusually quiet, the wait staff both impeccable and familial, and the fresh cantaloupe juice a perfect antidote to the frosty snow piles outside. Dean and Maya Jankelowitz first opened the South-African-meets-Israeli-Jewish-comfort-food spot in Soho in early 2012 after meeting and falling in love at Balthazar, a block away.

 
PHOTO BY BALARAMA HELLER

PHOTO BY BALARAMA HELLER

I Can’t Stop Drinking Water Ever Since I Got This Thing

I miss being a kid, particularly at nighttime, when I used to recklessly scream into the pitch black: “MOM!!! DAAAADDDD!!!! I NEED A GLASS OF WATER!” until one parent or the other would shuffle in with my much-needed libation, patting me on the head as I gulped it down.In these fend-for-your-adult-self times, I always keep a glass of water by my bed to keep the anxiety at bay. But, inevitably, every few months, I manage to knock it over in my sleep. There’s nothing worse than waking up with a mouth like the Sahara desert to find the well’s already run dry.

 
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Angelica Kitchen Says Goodbye To All That

It wasn’t just gray skies casting a somber shadow over Angelica Kitchen this week. After 42 years serving homey, plant-based soups, stews, salads, and desserts to droves of dedicated eaters, the trailblazing vegan restaurant is closing Friday. Cause of death: rising rent and a gentrified neighborhood

 
PHOTO BY ALEX LAU; STYLING BY SUE LI.

PHOTO BY ALEX LAU; STYLING BY SUE LI.

The Greens That Chefs Go Crazy For

The Union Square Greenmarket is eerily empty at 6 a.m. on a Friday morning—a fleeting hiatus in the city that never sleeps. Chris Field and Jessi Okamoto are the exception: They’re busy pulling plump, over-wintered spinach, delicate golden and ruby-frill mustard, purple mizuna, spicy wild arugula, sweet pea shoots, and the most beautiful chicory rosettes I’ve ever seen from their mud-caked white van. Finally, they hang their wooden sign: “Campo Rosso Farm, Gilbertsville, PA.” The final touch is complete before most of their customers are awake.

 
PHOTO BY ALEX LAU

PHOTO BY ALEX LAU

These Restaurant Uniforms Are Somehow Both Très French and Not Cheesy

Work-wear coats and aprons in traditional French blues, colorful sneakers, and expat-chic neckerchiefs: We come to Brooklyn’s Sauvage for the smoked corn tagliatelle, but we stay for the fashion inspiration. From the team behind classic Brooklyn oyster bar Maison Premiere, Sauvage follows a different narrative. "It's not so precise," says owner Joshua Boissy. "Sauvage is a little more free-flowing and a little bit more diverse in terms of the influences." 

 
PHOTO BY ALEX LAU

PHOTO BY ALEX LAU

My Love for This Saucepan Knows No Limits

Ever since I bought a Kobenstyle® 2-quart Saucepan by Dansk, who I’ve nicknamed my “Tiny Dansker,” I’ve become rather partial to single-pot meals: a perfect bowl of rice with steamed vegetables, easy weeknight pastas, and soup galore. The teak wood handle outsmarts heat conduction and prevents burns; the enamel-coated steel is super easy to clean; and, best for last, the lid becomes a trivet, meaning you can take that Pasta al Pomodoro from stovetop straight to tabletop. 

 
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This Designer's the Reason You're Seeing Mangosteens on the Runway

If you were thinking of inviting fashion designer Sandy Liang to a matinée, a stroll in the park, or any other Sunday-ish activity, good luck (unless you’re Ina Garten, maybe). She’s got her own routine, namely a potluck-style Cantonese banquet with her entire family. Everyone gets a plate of rice and picks from the buffet of dishes—whole sea bass or chicken, brothy soups, and a ton of vegetables—that sit steaming in the center of the table. “Cantonese food’s all about family-style,” Liang says. "There's no such thing as ordering your own plate."

 
PHOTO BY EMMA FISHMAN

PHOTO BY EMMA FISHMAN

These Non-Spicy Habanero Peppers are a Gift from Science

The coolest pepper I have ever eaten is a crooked, inconspicuous looking thing called a Habanada. I first tasted it during a conference at Blue Hill at Stone Barns in upstate New York. It was dark and noisy, with guests all lined up at long, swarming tables—a sort of Hogwarts dining hall vibe. After a hearty introduction from Dan Barber, a cross-section of the pepper arrived, served on a thin round of earthy-sweet flame beet, on a kind of nordic-looking cracker. The vegetables were dressed with olive oil and a sprinkle of flaky sea salt. In all honesty, I thought it was a joke.

 
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9 Australian Junk Foods That Are All National Treasures

If you grew up in Australia but now live in America, chances are you’re suffering from imposter syndrome. It’s a feeling, spurred on by the numerous “Aussie” restaurants popping up, that everyone thinks you’re way healthier than you are. (Cheers, spiralized zucchini. Looking at you too, perfect hummus swoosh.) I love avocado toast like the next guy, don’t get me wrong, but I need to set the record straight: it’s not all juiced kale and bronzed surfers down there, folks. 

 
PHOTO BY SPENCER OSTRANDER

PHOTO BY SPENCER OSTRANDER

9 Restaurants That Are Taking This Millennial Pink Thing Very Seriously

It’s time to talk about Millennial Pink. We know you can’t scroll an inch these days without seeing a blush wall, a nude red carpet gown, or an impossibly pink nature shot (guilty as charged). Love it or hate it, the color palette—which starts somewhere around Himalayan pink salt and stops just short of beet-cured-lox—is coming to dinner too. Is it the rise in female-run kitchens? Blurring gender lines? Post-industrial design fatigue? Or just that all-powerful social-media ripple effect?