The Perfect Cup
Terra Kaffe’s espresso machine elevates your morning ritual with the press of a button.
Plus, a remarkable electric vehicle, an unparalleled air fryer, and other items our editors loved this month.
THE BEST GIFT I ever got was a goldfish from my uncle when I was six. The goldfish had what I now consider the essential ingredients of an excellent present: It was something I hadn’t known I wanted until I saw it; it revealed that my uncle understood me; and it lasted — much to my mother’s dismay — for a whopping eight years. I try to hold these tenets in mind when shopping for others, and many of the items our editors have gathered here meet these criteria. There are also a few items that you should probably just get for yourself. And, no, I’m not talking about the premium plane ticket to Paris; I can think of no more romantic gift than that. Whether you’re spoiling yourself or someone else, these are the items and experiences that we loved this month. — Laura Smith
I have been called an organizational hoarder — meaning I deeply enjoy baskets, containers, shelving, bags, you name it. If we’re talking about objects to hide my objects, I’m in. Yet, I have never really treated myself to a quality food storage set until Caraway. I recently pushed my old Tupperware to the back of my cabinets to make space for this gorgeously designed ceramic sage set. Bonus: It also includes storage organizers (more organization!) so that the containers aren’t falling every which way in your cabinet, and they are oven-safe. I can guarantee that my friends will only see these beauties if they come to my house because there is no chance I am running the risk of anyone “forgetting” to return my latest obsession. — Hailey Andresen
As someone who finds changes in my core routines disquieting, finding a new hairdresser can be unsettling. But after moving to Paris a year ago now and spending the better part of that year trying to squeeze appointments with my regular hairdresser into trips back to New York, I figured it was finally time to take the plunge into an actual new routine. A visit to David Mallett’s Paris salon calmed my nerves. The Notre Dame des Victoires location is housed in a second-floor space and feels like visiting a very big, rambling apartment, one that belongs to a friend with great taste, and who has lots of other friends hanging around, looking to take care of you. Giorgio refreshed and deepened my color, while Yuta gave me a haircut that was the best I’ve had in years — with a few flicks of the straight razor, he somehow managed to blend the chunks of bangs I’d been growing out into something that looks intentional. Best of all, the salon also has a New York location, so I can keep up my same routine while traveling. — Skye Parrott
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There should be a long, complex German word for the horror of trying on your wedding suit and realizing it’s now a size too small — two weeks before a best friend’s I-do’s. Swallowing my pride and embracing the opportunity, I headed to Todd Snyder’s store in New York City’s Madison Square for a new suit in an easygoing summer fabric. At the warmly lit flagship location, two contenders — both in a subtle, signature seersucker — quickly caught my eye: the Madison, with a looser fit in a roguish olive color, and the Sutton, gently tailored and handsome in a dark navy. I went with the latter, along with leather Sanders x Todd Snyder Clive Loafers in dark brown, and a silk knit tie. I’ve never gotten more compliments on a suit in my life. Its dimpled texture felt considered and unexpected without seeming flashy, and the lightweight Portuguese fabric had enough give to help me set the pace in the hora. Todd Snyder, the eponymous designer, tells me that relaxed sophistication is the new luxury — exemplified by ’80s silhouettes, rustic textures, elevated materials, and creative embellishments (such as the hidden drawstring on the Madison trousers). He calls it a “palate cleansing” post-COVID-19: “People have reemerged from the past few years with a desire to dress better.” Thankfully, as my suiting scramble reveals, no longer must we sacrifice comfort and movement in the name of good taste. — Cooper Fleishman
As a Brooklynite with commitment issues, I am always flirting with the idea of getting a car. My partner and I often rent cars under the auspices of trying them on for size but always find a reason to talk ourselves out of buying one. That may change now that we’ve experienced driving a Lucid. This electric-car company based in California wants to make vehicles that are as luxurious as they are environmentally friendly. We spent a weekend with the Lucid Air, which is described as “the longest-range, fastest -charging luxury electric car in the world.” To say we were dazzled would be an understatement. Unlike other electric cars I’ve driven, which seem to have laptops glued to the dashboards, all of Lucid’s controls and visualizers are seamlessly integrated into the console. After pairing the controls with my phone, it felt as if the car could read my mind. All of the technology was intuitive. The car is also remarkably powerful, which is something you have to get used to, going from 0 to 60 mph in less than two seconds with up to 1,200 horsepower. Our car also came with what is called a glass canopy, which means almost the entire top half of the car can function like a giant sunroof. The whole experience was like driving an insanely glamorous, highly automated spaceship designed to transport you to someplace incredibly cool, even if we were mostly just using it to make a run to Ikea and for a quick trip to the beach. — T. Cole Rachel
The brand is Climate Neutral Certified — embodying responsible luxury at every level of their production.
Asian- and female-founded Advene is a new, stunningly minimal accessories brand that’s caught my eye recently. I ardently love anything like this that’s pared back into borderline nonexistence. Specializing in leather bags that feel more like sculptures, the brand is Climate Neutral Certified — embodying responsible luxury at every level of their production. I own the Edge, a sleek, architectural shoulder bag that somehow holds everything I need. The leather is dreamy, made from 100% traceable materials, and lined in suede. I’m excited to tote it around this fall — its sharp, wide shoulder straps fit nicely over a thick wool coat.
— Sophie Mancini
I recently flew to Paris on the first-ever direct JetBlue flight between New York City and Charles de Gaulle Airport. The now-daily offering is the latest in JetBlue’s rollout of new international flights and was celebrated with a party at JFK, complete with a DJ, free Parisian snacks, and a mini Eiffel Tower in the terminal. It was not only a great way for me to get to Paris, but it was also my first time experiencing JetBlue’s premium Mint service. Having experienced every level of air travel, including many versions of business class, my time in Mint was truly impressive. I was seated in one of the Mint “Studio” seats, which comes with a guest seat and a pop-up table where you can work. While I didn’t have the opportunity to entertain any guests while I flew, I did manage to get some work done and to watch a movie on the biggest TV currently available on a U.S. airline, before closing the door and transforming the space into a mini-bedroom in order to get a little rest before landing. As one would expect from JetBlue, the food and amenities were all thoughtful, fun, and well-designed, and the entire experience was a nice reminder that air travel can not only be tolerable but actually a true pleasure. — Cole
Before my daughter was born, I decided her style would be “androgynous loud” because I was hoping to set the scene for a lively and fun-filled childhood. Everywhere I looked, I saw children strolling or toddling through parks dressed in sad, beige clothes. It was enough to make me want to bring color swatches to the playground to show these poor souls what they were missing. Recently I found the androgynous-loud children’s clothing line of my dreams: LA-based Milk Teeth. The brand was founded in 2021 by two fashion executives who were tired of the dull children’s items on offer. “Your kid has got plenty of good years ahead for tasteful Scandinavian neutrals — now is a time for power-clashing and maximal patterns,” they say. “We wanted options as colorful and fun as children themselves.” The vibe is zany and full of zest, which, as happenstance would have it, is also how I would describe my now almost 5-year-old daughter. Is she that way because I carefully cultivated these parts of her personality through clothing choice and other means? Or was she born this way? The world will never know. But dressed head-to-toe in Milk Teeth, she looks fantastic. — Laura
I am constantly surprised by how many times, as a full-grown adult person, I now revisit (or rebuy) things I had when I was a kid. Case in point: boat shoes. I have not worn or thought about boat shoes since I was in junior high, but on a recent trip to Italy, I was struck by how many of them I saw on the feet of various stylish Italians. After a little online browsing, I landed on a pair of classic Docksides from the venerable footwear brand Sebago. The moccasin-influenced, hand-sewn “Portland” boat shoe is inspired by Maine and meant to invoke the fishing heritage of the city. I like the fact that these shoes are comfortable and generally indestructible, and given that they come with nonslip rubber soles, they actually make sense for doing things like going to the beach or hanging out on a boat. And while they come in a variety of colors, I got them in taupe with an orange sole, so they feel both sensible and a bit flashy at the same time. — Cole
When people imagine fragrances, they often picture France — specifically Grasse — home of the perfume industry. Cultus Artem, a boutique and luxury fragrance and skincare line, formulates their products in a location that isn’t typically synonymous with scent: San Antonio, Texas. A former Southwestern Bell Telephone exchange building is now the atelier and laboratory for founder Holly Tupper’s brand of heavenly perfumes, oils, and moisturizers. Each fragrance is handmade and small batch, with eight unique scents available. The attractive bottles shouldn’t be stowed in your medicine cabinet, but displayed for all to see — and to sample. When trying to describe the scents, I am at a loss for words because each one has such a distinct combination of potent and sublime notes. People are always intrigued when I wear Tuberosa, a mix of tuberose, gardenia, musk, and clove. With so many intoxicating scents to choose from, I suggest starting with the discovery set to narrow down your favorite. — Elissa Polls
I recently upped my breakfast game tremendously. Eggs play a large role in my mornings, considering that I live in New York’s Hudson Valley (you just can’t beat those fresh farm yolks). I’m an over-medium girl, but I deeply appreciate a jammy soft-boiled egg, although I rarely make time for it — until now. Enter the Wonder Oven, the latest release from the beloved kitchen brand Our Place. This adorable countertop appliance is an air fryer, oven, and toaster all in one. Visually think elevated Easy-Bake Oven — they even have a special-edition light-pink color. I air-fried two eggs for 15 minutes at 270 degrees while I started cruising through my inbox and voilà, perfect jammy eggs. Less mess, a cooler kitchen in the warm and humid summer months, and quicker cook times are wins all around. — Hailey
One of the side effects of traveling so much is that I have become a hoarder of luggage. Within my Brooklyn apartment, every closet and empty space hides a suitcase, and each of those is like a Russian nesting doll, filled with other, smaller suitcases. Whenever I feel I’ve found the perfect bag and optimized my travel setup, along comes something like this new collaboration between high-end luggage purveyors Tumi and luxury automotive company McLaren to throw my suitcase ecosystem into chaos. A capsule luggage collection consisting of small bags, backpacks, and wheeled carry-ons, these collaborative pieces are automotive-inspired and built to last forever. I opted for the Aero International Expandable Four-Wheeled Carry-On and the matching Velocity Backpack. The carry-on not only comes with a zip-front lid that lets you easily stash a laptop or access your chargers, it also comes in a vibrant shade called papaya (see also: orange) that will make it impossible to miss when it circles by on the baggage carousel. — Cole
The Haitian founders of Furcy Botanik, Nathania Dominique and Harvey Gedeon (formerly of The Estée Lauder Companies), get the ingredients for their skincare line from Furcy, a Haitian village that is home to rarities such as djon djon (a mushroom found only in Haiti), guava leaves, and vetiver oil. My personal favorite, the Essence Éklat, is a toner and hydrator all in one. I spritz morning and night and anytime my skin needs a little refresh in between. The cream and serum are light but pack a punch. All of the products have a natural scent that is both delightful and subtle with no artificial fragrances. Best of all, the company donates $5 from every purchase to the Kids of Furcy Foundation, a nonprofit that supports educational access to the local community. — Elissa
Laura Smith is the deputy editor of Departures. Previously, she was the executive editor of California magazine and has written for the New York Times, the Guardian, the Atlantic, and many more. Her nonfiction book, The Art of Vanishing, was published by Viking in 2018.
Cooper Fleishman is Senior Director of Audience Development at Departures. Based in Brooklyn, he is a writer, editor, content director, and growth strategist with more than a decade’s experience in digital media. He previously led news and audience for MEL magazine, directed technology and culture news at Mic.com, and managed the New York bureau for the Daily Dot. He writes about style, travel, technology, and music.
Elissa Polls is the head of production for Departures. A producer who typically stays behind the scenes, she has worked with creatives from around the world, helping bring their ideas to life. Polls has over 15 years of production experience and lives in Berkeley, California.
Hailey Andresen is the guides editor at Departures. A New York–based writer and editor, she founded the digital lifestyle publication Household Mag and has spent more than a decade in the hospitality industry.
T. Cole Rachel is a Brooklyn-based writer, editor, and teacher with over 20 years of experience working in print and digital media. He is currently an editor-at-large at Departures.
Sophie Mancini is an editor at Departures. Born and raised in New York City, she holds a degree in creative writing from Johns Hopkins University and has a background as a writer in brand and editorial.
Jess Rotter is a Los Angeles–based illustrator and artist. Rotter’s work has frequently featured in the Washington Post. Her clients range from Natalie Portman to Questlove.
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