City Life

Quick Hits

Seen and Heard

She sways. She saunters. She struts the 95-foot catwalk. That is, if she meets Chanel’s exacting standards. The French fashion house known for its attention to detail held its Fall-Winter 2006 show at the Renaissance Cleveland Hotel Sept. 7. Dozens of models donning mostly black and white ensembles attracted plenty of attention, but no models were from Cleveland. That’s because none passed the rumored Chanel test in which a 34-inch hoop must pass over a prospective model’s body without touching at any point. Instead, thin fashionistas were shipped in from New York, Los Angeles and Chicago for the affair. Attendees did receive a $50 Saks Fifth Avenue gift card and a bottle of Chanel cologne or perfume as party favors — no hoop test required.

Survey Says

We’re sure you noticed the beer on the cover of this month’s magazine — a decision we made shortly before Forbes announced its list of America’s drunkest cities, which found Cleveland (surprise!) in the top 10. We finished No. 7, a slot ahead of Pittsburgh (No. 8), but a handful of steps lower than those beer-soaked Buckeyes in Columbus (No. 3). Let’s own it. Beer is in our blood. Literally. When two of the nation’s most infamous instances of bad sports-fan behavior come from Cleveland, involving the mass consumption of cheap beer (the Tribe’s 10-cent Beer Night of the ’70s) and throwing mass quantities of empty beer bottles onto the field (the Browns’ 2001 late-season loss to Jacksonville), is there much to argue? Of course, the Forbes report was based on drinking surveys, strict alcohol laws (or lack of them) and solid facts, but it doesn’t take a study to figure out we like a good brew (or three).


And Another Thing

It was a strange matchup. But a late-summer, listener-judged battle of the bands over West Coast airwaves between Rust Belt underdogs Mushroomhead (“The Music Issue,” April 2004) and the multiplatinum-selling band Evanescence ended with Cleveland’s heavy metal heroes emerging victorious.

California’s KRQR pitted Mushroomhead’s new release “Simple Survival,” against a fresh single from the hard rock band that had one of the biggest hits of the summer of 2003. But that doesn’t mean your favorite masked band has gone soft with its first new batch of material since its breakthrough Universal Records release “XIII.” A new singer has injected more melody, but the brutally huge sound that catapulted Mushroomhead from local phenomenon to national act is fully intact.

“There wasn’t this huge deadline, there wasn’t all this pressure,” drummer Skinny says of recording the new CD “Savior Sorrow.” “There was no agenda other than reinventing yourself as a band. That had a lot to do with the vibe of this record.”

After releasing a self-produced DVD last summer and touring for nine weeks in support of it, Mushroomhead was approached by New York City-based Megaforce Records, which helped launch Metallica and Anthrax in the 1980s.

“It’s not like they have to put a lot of money into artist development,” Skinny says. “When they came in, they told us to keep doing what we were doing, but just do a record for them.”

So, now its back to the tour bus for a band that built its rabid following on an over-the-top live show. Mushroomhead kicked off its tour at Peabody’s Sept. 20, will trek to the West Coast and head back to Cleveland by Halloween, says Skinny.

Retail Oriented

Upscale clothing store White House/Black Market is adding a splash of pink to its white and black color palette this month to help support women affected by breast cancer. We were instantly drawn to the fun and flirty Hope Umbrella ($44) with a French-inspired floral design that promises to help combat those dreary-day blues. But those who’d prefer a rain-or-shine show of support can opt for the Hope Key Ring ($18), decorated with clusters of glass pearls, beads and metal charms. The women’s clothing store, which has locations in Lyndhurst, Westlake and Rocky River, will donate 100 percent of net proceeds from every pink purchase to Living Beyond Breast Cancer, an organization dedicated to empowering all women affected by breast cancer to live as long as possible with the best quality of life. We’ll shop to that.

Web Sighting

When we last heard from Frank’s Sauerkraut, the Northwest Ohio-based Fremont Co. was urging us to stuff cabbage inside our martini olives for a fresh twist on a classic drink. Now, the sauerkraut supplier is looking for “reubenadios” to help with it’s new online shrine to the classic corned beef concoction: Frank’s Sauerkraut marketing director Chris Smith says the site was launched for “followers and fans” of the mouthwatering mix of corned beef, sauerkraut and Thousand Island dressing stacked between two pieces of rye bread. And since our city’s love of brined beef is legendary, we’re betting Clevelanders have plenty of expertise to offer in this search for revisions to the famous formula. Submit your photos, post your recipes and prove yourself the ultimate “reubenadio.” Corned beef lovers, consider this your call to arms.

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