Author: Megan

Hi, I’m Megan and I randomly ended up in Louisville, Kentucky, about 15 years ago. Never expecting to stay in this beach-lacking both Southern and Northern city, I have grown to truly love my unexpected home.

Justin Chapple to Headline Monogram’s Tasting Tent at Newport Food & Wine Fest

Written by Kim Mays, Monogram content strategist

If you haven’t already made plans, you should join us in attending the yearly Newport Mansions Wine & Food Festival on September 19 through the 22. The event features world-class wines and award-winning chefs mingled with the extraordinary beauty of the Newport Mansions including The Breakers, Marble House, and Rosecliff. The festival is sponsored by Food & Wine magazine, and this year Monogram Appliances sponsors the culinary stage. On that stage, Food & Wine culinary director at large and amazing chef, writer and video star Justin Chapple will create some delicious dishes while dishing out some of his Mad Genius Tips to attendees.

Chapple has been featured in People, The Oprah Magazine, and Real Simple, and has been twice nominated for the prestigious James Beard Award for his work as host of the popular video series Mad Genius Tips. Prior to joining Food & Wine, he was a cook at a fine French restaurant, Allegretti, which has since closed. When interviewed for Save Room for Design, Chapple admitted missing restaurant work in general, but loving that he has managed to make a fulfilling career in the food industry.

As a kid in the days before Food Network and Cooking channel, Chapple “loved watching Jacques Pépin, Martin Yan, and the Two Fat Ladies on TV.” These classic TV chefs inspired him to cook at home, but it was a certain family member who gave him the impetus to go into the field fulltime. “Really, my Grandma Barbara taught me to love food enough to make a career out of it. She was an outstanding cook and would create incredible meals practically out of thin air,” said Chapple.

That love of feeding family and friends is one of his favorite aspects of cooking. “Nothing gives me more satisfaction than knowing someone is enjoying one of my creations,” Chapple said.

When it comes to developing his own recipes, he’s often inspired by other restaurants. Though he loves eating at different places and trying new foods, he sometimes only needs to read about a dish for inspiration. “Believe it or not, I read menus even if I don’t get to a restaurant for a meal,” Chapple said.

Chapple is very excited to attend the Newport Food & Wine Festival—“I definitely can’t wait to see these mansions that everyone is telling me about,” he said. He is eager to make pizzas and more in the Monogram tasting tent, where he knows he’ll get to meet many people attending the events. “Hopefully, they won’t mind me taking lots of selfies,” he quipped.

Though he wouldn’t give us his secret recipes in advance, he did admit that he will be demonstrating some Mad Genius Tips during his cooking demonstrations. One in particular will be about how to poach eggs in advance, “yes, it’s actually possible!” Chapple said.

In the Monogram Hearth Oven, Chapple will be making a summery pizza with turkey sausage, Brussels sprouts, and pesto. “It’s so yummy and believe it or not, in the Monogram Hearth Oven, it takes only two minutes to cook!”

We will be attending the Newport Food & Wine Festival to enjoy the many delicious wines and foods as well as to take in the beauty of the mansion homes. But our favorite spot will definitely be in the tasting tent with Justin Chapple and we hope you will join us!

A Modernist at Heart

Written by Kim Mays, content strategist for Monogram

A modernist at heart, Nicholas Moriarty found a way to satisfy his intellectual and creative sides: interior design. As a child, he “spent countless hours watching This Old House,” which delved into the ways an older space could be renovated to become something more modern and spectacular. It prepared him for his ultimate career path, where he shines among his peers.

Bucktown living room designed by Nicolas Moriarty

“I’m a modernist at heart,” Moriarty said. His favorite design periods are Bauhaus and Art Deco, which were both very forward-thinking at the time of their popularity, and aspects of both are very relevant today. “The design principles of these eras never really faded away—they just adapted,” said Moriarty.

In that vein of thought, Moriarty feels that the new Monogram Minimalist Collection speaks to his design aesthetic and epitomizes the modernist principles. The elimination of handles and knobs wherever possible harkens to the Modernist principle where removal of ornamentation and excessive decoration was important to the style. Modernism also brought forth the ideal that craftsmanship was of utmost importance, which Monogram also takes very seriously. Each appliance is meticulously engineered to function as fabulously as it looks. And to Moriarty, they’re worth every penny: “The amazing cost to quality ratio [for Monogram appliances] is second to none in the industry.”

Monogram Minimalist Collection single wall oven launching in 2020

When designing modern, upscale kitchens, Moriarty feels that balancing functionality with aesthetic can be quite challenging. “As a home cook, I inherently know the ins and outs of a properly functioning kitchen’ sometimes minimal design is at odds with this,” he said. To ensure the cooking space functions as well as it looks, his team spends a great deal of time guiding their clients through the entire design process so they can provide a kitchen that looks sleek, but still provides the right tools and space for culinary creativity.

Moriarty hopes that as a designer, he can engage with brands like Monogram to pass on his insights. “I want to help push the industry forward in any way I can.” Being on the Monogram Designer Council is one way he is sharing his ideas and gathering input from other designers. Moriarty loves “the comradery that exists between all of the designers,” and said “I truly appreciate how receptive Monogram is as a company to constructive criticism. They want to make the industry better with us, which I think speaks volumes about who they are as a brand.”

We agree, Nicholas. And we look forward to learning more about what our designers want and need through their investment in the Designer Council.

Monogram Designer Council – Caroline Torchin

Florida designer and Monogram Designer Council member Caroline Torchin creates modern, luxury spaces for her clients, which include both vacation homes and permanent residences. She believes “the kitchen is the heart of the home,” and for good reason—it tends to be the place where meals are shared, entertaining happens, and family congregates.

Monogram Designer Council

The Monogram Designer Council was created to serve as the consultative voice for our brand decisions and showcase Monogram’s commitment to the design community. Comprised of 18 designers from over 10 cities, we brought the Monogram Designer Council together to cultivate a vision on everything from the design of our products to the experience of ownership. Each designer’s expertise will help Monogram realize timeless design trends and available opportunities.

 

 

Forge Clear Ice System Now Open for Pre-Orders

Use code “MONOGRAM” to receive special launch pricing. Pre-order now.

“If you’ve read my books, you know I wouldn’t ordinarily recommend putting ice in your whiskey. But there’s a reason why Forge is the first product I’ve endorsed.” —Fred Minnick, Spirits Author, Historian, and Editor-in-Chief of Bourbon+, who signed on to help launch the Forge Clear Ice System

The Forge Clear Ice System brings the experience of the world’s best bars into your home—and it’s available for pre-order starting June 19. 

The Forge Clear Ice System is an addition to your home bar that elevates the way you experience fine spirits, whether you’re entertaining friends or winding down from a hard day’s work. It includes:

  • A countertop ice maker that makes large blocks of clear, gem-shaped ice
  • A one-of-a-kind heated ice press
  • Specially engineered ice tongs

The clear ice maker creates large gem-shaped blocks of clear ice in just hours and holds them at the ideal temperature. The heated press then shapes the gems into crystal-like spheres in about a minute with virtually no preheat or recovery time needed.

To propel Forge into the production phase, pre-orders must reach a minimum quantity within the launch period. When you place your order, you’ll be joining the more than 12,000 other people who have pre-ordered products from FirstBuild – from the Opal Nugget Ice Maker to the Paragon Ultimate Smart Cooking System.

Enter code “MONOGRAM” upon checkout to receive special launch pricing when you reserve your Forge Clear Ice System. Pre-order today.

Watch our video to see the Forge in action.

COCOCOZY Design Gives 1930s Kitchen Old-World Charm with an Elevated Twist

Photo by Melissa Gayle

Design blogger Colette “Coco” Shelton’s work on the 1930s Spanish colonial COCOCOZY Design House shows off her design talents, especially in the kitchen. Coco believes kitchens should be livable—a place to cook, dine, live and entertain. For this home, that meant paying homage to the charm of the house while bringing it up to date with today’s modern kitchen aesthetic.

Said Coco, “The design offers a blend of old-world Hollywood meets modern classic with clean lines, luxe textures and countertops, and contrasting black trim.” Though she doesn’t subscribe to a specific design style or trend, she uses a mix of styles that speak to her to create a mélange of elements that flow from room to room.

Photo by Reid Rolls

What was once three cramped rooms became a kitchen that adjoins the dining room in a way that makes them seem almost one space. The original kitchen had older white porcelain tile floors, but the rest of the house had original 2” plank red oak flooring. Coco removed the white tile floors and replaced them with matching 2” red oak wood and continued with a custom wood stain to lighten up the floors throughout the house. Now, the new kitchen blends seamlessly with the entire house—almost like it was part of the original design. “I transformed the space into a contemporary sanctuary fit for entertaining and hosting,” said Coco.

The new kitchen area features new two-tone cabinets; the upper ones are Benjamin Moore Super White just like the walls, while the lower cabinets are Benjamin Moore Silent Night. The pale grey/blue color of the lower cabinets grounds the space, while adding a subtle element of color. Around the windows, Coco used Benjamin Moore Blacktop, which frames the panes almost like art against the white walls.

The off-white countertops are Staturio Nuovo quartz by Caesarstone. Like marble, they contain a subtle veining of darker grey and really elevate the look of the cabinets. The white farmhouse apron-front sink and faucet are both from Kohler.

One of Coco’s favorite design elements is the counter-to-ceiling backsplash done in classic white subway tile. It adds a bit of gleam and texture to the mostly white space. She also loves the state-of-the-art Monogram column refrigerator and freezer that she chose to put side by side for ease of access. In fact, Coco feels that all the Monogram appliances—including the range, dishwasher and refrigerator—really elevated the entire design of the kitchen. By placing the professional style appliances into her design, she’s blended the home’s old-world, historical style with a refreshing modern twist.

We love how the COCOCOZY Design House came together and are proud to have our Monogram appliances featured in the kitchen. Thank you, Coco for a design job well done.

Photo by Melissa Gayle

Sleek, Modern Florida Kitchen Seamlessly Integrates with Monogram Appliances

In Boca Raton, Florida, designer Caroline Torchin creates modern, luxury spaces for her clients, which include both vacation homes and permanent residences. Torchin believes “the kitchen is the heart of the home,” and for good reason—it tends to be the place where meals are shared, entertaining happens, and family congregates. She also is a big fan of Monogram appliances and recently was named a member of our Monogram Designer Council, where she and more than a dozen other designers from around the country will meet and help influence upcoming Monogram designs and features.

Torchin recommends Monogram appliances to many of her clients because she sees how it ties her goals together. “My main goal is to give function as well as aesthetics, and I think Monogram nails it,” Torchin said. “I think the efficiency, the speed, the technology, is on point.”

 

Her latest kitchen design featured Monogram appliances for a condominium client who enjoys cooking, and who sought a modern, timeless design for their kitchen. Though her designs tend to lean toward rustic chic, she loves how this kitchen features a bit more glam and shine. The cabinet finish is in dual tones of acrylic gloss white and gloss oak. The wood grain brings warmth to the kitchen along with the Pompeii quartz countertops in White Macaubas, which feature veins of a natural, warm gray.

The seamless countertops were quite a challenge to install in this 7th floor condominium. The elevator was only 8-feet tall, and the long countertop was 11-feet in length. After the client specifically requested keeping the countertop seamless, the only option was to hire a crane company to hoist the 11’x4’ quartz countertop up to the client’s balcony on a rather windy day. Thankfully, the installation went off without a hitch and the kitchen looks just as sleek as the countertops.

 

The walls were painted using Benjamin Moore Decorators White, and the flooring features 24” x 48” porcelain tiles, which hold up well to traffic. Each piece of the design flows seamlessly into the next, which is exactly what Torchin loves about the space. “The flush installation of the appliances complements the sleekness of my design,” Torchin said. The highlight of this is the Monogram integrated panel refrigerator clad in matching gloss oak to blend with the cabinetry. It’s unobtrusive and elevates the design to a whole new level.

We are thrilled with the look of this modern kitchen and are excited to be a big influence on Caroline Torchin’s designs. We look forward to working with Caroline and the others on the Monogram Designer Council this year.

 

Monogram Sponsors Kips Bay Decorator Show House Kitchen in NYC

2019 © Nickolas Sargent Photography

One of the nation’s leading design events of the year, the Kips Bay Decorator Show House, is in its 47th year of production. Each year, a home in New York City is chosen to be redesigned and decorated for tens of thousands of people to tour. The proceeds of the tour go to the Kips Bay Boys & Girls Club, which provides important after school enrichment programs for NYC children. This year, the home is a stunning double-width Georgian townhouse with 12,425 square feet of space. Monogram luxury appliances partnered with AJ Madison to sponsor the kitchen, and worked with Peacock Cabinetry’s Christopher Peacock on its design. The result is an inviting, functional kitchen that’s any cook’s dream.

2019 © Nickolas Sargent Photography

Peacock’s inspiration for the kitchen was to create, “A simple, clean and open kitchen, that is easy to use with practical materials.” He was certainly on the mark with this design. His design is upscale, made with sensible materials, and gives serious attention to details. Peacock says he sees this as “… a great place to kill a bottle of wine,” and we couldn’t agree more. It’s comfortable and begs for you to sit at the island for conversation over a bottle of Cabernet.

Kitty Dadi Photography

It started with Peacock Cabinetry’s Montauk cabinet collection, which is a modern kitchen cabinet that features classical elements. They were painted a deep, dark green with a hint of blue and feature brushed brass and walnut hardware. The countertops are pure white by Cambria. Peacock kept the walls in simple white, which lets the handsome cabinetry take center stage.

Kitty Dadi Photography

When asked about his favorite element of the kitchen, Peacock chose the open shelving in front of the windows. They’re suspended by brass hardware and feature riveted brass accents—an elegant way to display favorite pottery and glassware.

The true focal point of the kitchen, however, is the unique mosaic backsplash made from sliced English flint veneer. The flint is an irregular stone known for its amazing hardness, so it is an incredibly durable, yet unexpected choice for a backsplash. It really sets off the stainless of the Monogram range and looks gorgeous next to the cabinetry.

The kitchen island features the same color as the cabinets but has a pure black Cambria top with a butcherblock inset. Carved walnut drawers feature the phrase “It is what it is” beneath the brass hardware. Though the ceilings in this room are low, the flower shaped light fixture overtop of the island brings a glow to the entire room and provides much needed light for prep work.

Peacock loved the seamless fit and classic looks of the Monogram luxury appliances in this kitchen. We think they really make this stunning room fit for a chef or any serious cook. “I have to say I am really thrilled with the finished room. Designing a show house kitchen is always challenging given the time constraints, but I feel we achieved our goal. The room is sophisticated visually, well appointed, and beautifully executed. The reaction from the audience is just what I hoped for and the selection of state-of-the-art appliances makes it a dream kitchen to work in,” said Peacock. The Monogram luxury appliances installed in this kitchen include a custom-panel refrigerator, 48” pro range, Advantium oven, and single wall oven. If you’re in the New York City area, take a tour and see this elegant house in person.