Wrought iron furniture
Venice home wears its history well
By MARSHA FOTTLER
An important landmark home on West Venice Avenue that is linked to the history of the city of Venice is on the market for $2.5 million, and soon will pass out of the curatorship of owners Jennifer and Rick Loehrig.
The Loehrigs have been focused on the estate’s preservation for the last decade. But now, with their two daughters making college decisions, the couple — Dayton, Ohio transplants — plan to downsize to a waterfront home in Venice that’s perhaps more modern.
The Loehrigs were collectors of antique cars and furniture when they were looking for a home in 2002. They had vacationed in Florida and were ready for a bigger, permanent house with vintage character.
“I was poking around several neighborhoods when I saw this beautiful big place just two blocks from the beach and two blocks from downtown,” recalled Rich Loehrig. “I looked in the windows and immediately called Realtor Lueanne Wood,” a woman known in Venice for her expertise in vintage properties.
“She got us the house. Then we realized we needed to get rid of most of our Victorian antiques and start looking for 18th-century French and Italian ones, because that’s how the first owner of the house furnished it.”
The Loehrigs are only the third family to live in the house.
The 5,055-square-foot, two-story home, built with detached garage and servant quarters, was built in 1925 for the vice president of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers, the group that brought city planner John Nolen to Venice to lay out the city and give it the charming character it retains today. But, by the time the executive’s manse was completed, bankruptcy intervened and the Florida land boom collapsed, taking the BLE’s investment with it. Soon, America would be sliding into the Great Depression.
The home sat vacant until the 1930s, when New Yorker Fitzhugh William Haensel and his wife moved in. He was a music critic and agent, and owned Haensel & Jones, a company that managed tours for musicians. The Haensels set the European decor style, taking their cues from the elegant architecture of the home, with its stone floors, multiple fireplaces, arched entrances and gracious outdoor courtyards for entertaining. Inside the many rooms were ornate fixtures, such as chandeliers, crystal scones and wrought-iron double doors leading into the formal dining room. The home was built to impress, and the Haensels understood their role as owners. They kept the house until 1969.
to be continued
Sizzling steaks and a rooftop dinner
A bodhi tree in red clay welcomes you as you step into Hotel Pankaj’s rooftop garden and restaurant, Nisha. Wrought iron chairs lie stranded amidst green bamboo plants. Bright yellow blossoms line the edges, and from your seat, you glimpse the blue expanse of sky and the panoramic view of the city.
The menu doesn’t disappoint either. Shrimps tossed in Schezwan sauce, placed on a bed of fried rice garnished with egg white strips, is what Volcano shrimps look like on a plate. For Rs 220, it is a treat.
Another exotic delicacy the menu boasts of, is Chicken Marthanda, wherein chicken and chicken liver pieces are chopped, sauted and served in an onion based gravy, best served with chappathi or tandoor breads. And for veggies, there is Paneer Kofta, fried cottage cheese and potato balls in a tomato cashew gravy.
The rooftop restaurant is open from 6 pm to 10.30 pm. For those of you who would want to sip some red wine or gulp chilled frothy beer, alcohol is also served at the rooftop restaurant.
It has been three years since Hotel Pankaj has altered their lunch menu to suit the customers’ tastes. “We had a lot of customers from the Secretariat and they all wanted homely food. So did those who came for shopping to the nearby shops, hence the change” says S Lal Kumar, executive chef of the restaurant.
With a variety of 28 Kerala dishes, both veg and non-veg, the buffet at their 6th floor restaurant, Sandhya, is a good bargain. A must-try in their buffet is chuttaracha chammanthi made with onions, smoked red chillies, scraped coconut, and curry leaves. It is best paired with kappa. Priced at ` 250, the buffet offers value for money as it includes specialties like nadan chicken curry, fish fry and a payasam. Payasams vary from day to day.
The glass-walled kitchen allows you to catch a glimpse of the clean and healthy method of cooking involved. If you are going for a la carte, pick the steak. Available in three choices, pepper steak, chicken diana and King fish Steak, are served as sizzlers dipped in mushroom sauce and accompanied with chips and vegetables.
This thirty-year-old hotel was most known for being the choice of stay of Mollywood celebrities. “Things have changed over the years. Many more hotels have sprung up but we still do have celebrities like Suresh Gopi, Innocent and Siddique frequenting our hotel,” Lal adds.
The center of a ger
By Cooper Baltis
Life in a Mongolian ger revolves around a wrought iron stove. It’s the original central heating that doubles as a device in which everything is cooked, boiled, steamed, fried, simmered and cleaned. It is invariably rusty, stained from daily usage and inlayed with endless knot regalia. It is crucial and strikingly useful. It is the center of the ger and the single most used item in the countryside.
Mongolian women spend most of their day around the stove. They begin their mornings by boiling water. Once the water is boiled, milk and tea is added to the boiling pot. A large ladle hanging from a chord near the stove is used to mix the milk and water together. A pinch of salt is mixed into the pot and an old saucepan is used to strain the milk tea into a pot. The nozzle of the tea pot is used to transfer the milk tea into a large thermos. The thermos is generally a bright color, the front of which is decorated by a floral pattern.
The thermos of milk tea is brought to a small table close to the back of the ger. It is set on the table next to a plastic bowl filled with bootsog, a fried pastry cut into small squares. The man of the ger enters and sits down on a stool next to the table. He greets his wife and daughters with a nod. His hands are muddy and slightly bloody from pulling a large thorn out of the hooves of one of his sheep. He reaches for the milk tea and pours it into a bowl. He finishes the tea quickly. Ochre finger prints remain on the white bowl. He takes one bootsog, puts it in the front pocket of his shirt, and leaves the ger.
The oldest daughter takes the pot used to boil the milk tea outside the ger. She uses an old rag to clean the milky residue off the side of the pot. She finishes and scoops water out of a plastic container into the pot. The pot is brought back into the ger and set on the stove. The middle daughter adds small chunks of wood into the stove. She blows air inside the stove using a hollow rod and listens for the crackling sound of the embers. While all this happens, the mother sits on her bed, combing the hair of the youngest daughter.
The water begins to boil on the stove. The oldest daughter pours most of the hot water into a metal wash bin. With the help of her sister, she carries the wash bin outside. The middle sister returns to the ger and grabs a sack of clothing out of a plastic bucket.
The mother sets her youngest daughter on the bed and picks up two small orange stools. She turns one of the stools upside down near the stove. She takes the pot full of water off the stove and balances it between the legs of the overturned stool. The mother sits on the other stool and starts using the hot water to wash dishes. The youngest daughter wanders outside to find her sisters.
She finds her sisters sitting around the wash bin on their heels. Soap suds splash out of the bin. The oldest sister scrubs a pair of jeans with her bare knuckles. The middle sister reaches for the youngest and tickles her. The youngest protests and runs back into the ger.
to be continued
Go outside – with style
By Helen Grange
Time was when a steel-frame garden swing was a must-have for your outdoor pleasure. Then there was the ubiquitous green plastic table and chair set, or the wrought-iron chairs imbued with Provençal charm, but which were cold and uncomfortable to sit on.
We’ve travelled light years since then in the realm of garden furniture design and manufacture, which is ever more inspired.
A Nordic-feel, minimalist-design ethos has been trending for a while, but the materials used are softer and more luxurious, yet extremely durable. A good example is the Italian De Padova range, available from the Generation store in Joburg’s Hyde Park shopping centre. Clean classic lines aside, the furniture is made of powder-coated aluminium alloy that resists rust and corrosion even at the coast.
to be continued
Greg Schiano and Buccaneers are a perfect fit
By Greg A. Bedard
You’d think, at 46 years old and after 11 seasons as a head coach on the college level at Rutgers, Schiano might be a little bit more anxious, constantly wondering, “Am I doing the right things? Am I missing anything?”
No, he is as in control of things with the Buccaneers as he ever was in Piscataway, N.J.
That’s likely because the fit between the ever-detailed, maniacally disciplined, and flat-lined Schiano, and the young and talented Buccaneers couldn’t be more perfect.
And that’s probably why Schiano, after several flirtations with the NFL, finally took the leap with this job and at this time.
“I thought as I learned about this organization, it was the right fit,” Schiano said. “But it’s not why I went down the road initially. I do, however, think that’s what kept me going down the road.
“A lot of times I’ve gone down the road and then said, ‘Rutgers is where I need to be, Rutgers is still right.’
“This was the first thing as I went down the road, and as I kept going, I said, ‘You know, this is where I should be. This is a good fit for me right now in my life.’
“I think one of the things that was very appealing was they had some young, talented players but probably lacking some of the things that we could bring as far as structure and discipline as well. So I did think it was a good opportunity and I think meeting with ownership and their belief and how they wanted to do things, that’s where it felt like we were aligned.”
Under ex-coach Raheem Morris, the Bucs were a mess last season, going 4-12 and losing their final 10 games, often by lopsided scores. They were undisciplined and lacked focus.
to be continued