Band of Outsiders' creative director Scott Sternberg and Bon Appétit editor in chief Adam Rapoport hosted a dinner at downtown's Grand Central Market on Tuesday night in honor of style writer turned canning wunderkind Kevin West and his new book "Saving the Season: A Cook's Guide to Home Canning, Pickling, and Preserving."
Before the 100-person, Southern-flavored dinner, guests from the worlds of art, fashion and food including Doug Aitken, Liz Goldwyn, China Chow, Katherine Ross, Zoe Cassavetes, Bret Easton Ellis and Vogue's West Coast editor Lisa Love, milled about among bales of stratgically placed hay and drank cocktails and Pabst Blue Ribbon beer from canning jars.
As if that wasn't indication enough, the evening wasn't much on formalities, with Rapoport and Sternberg making only the briefest of remarks before the feast commenced. "I wanted to acknowledge this evening as a fusion of the worlds of fashion and food," said Sternberg, "that I don't think could happen anywhere else but Los Angeles."
Sternberg drew a parallel to West's career arc. “Over the years we've all seen this strange, interesting and wonderful juxtaposition between what he was -- which was the sort of guy who wrote about skewering socialites -- and what he is now -- which is a guy who spends all day skewering pickles."
With a roar of laughter from the guests, Sternberg and Rapoport took the opportunity to raise their canning jars in toast to West as bowls of pickled vegetables and platters of barbecued pork spare ribs and pork belly began to land on tables.
As West began to circulate among the guests, one of them remarked about his outfit -- a pair of dark denim jeans, a white, linen button-down shirt and a white, one-button notch lapel blazer, "Only you would wear white to a barbecue," they said.
Yes, it was just that kind of a crowd.
And if you happen to read this in time, West will be discussing the book and signing copies at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at Skylight Books, 1818 N. Vermont Ave., Los Angeles.