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[See more Arts: Book articles]

Celebrity Book Signings at Hammertown and Privet House

Rural Intelligence Arts
A bona fide celebrity—not just someone who is accomplished or has a well-known name—is a person whom you’ve always wanted to see in the flesh to determine whether the image you have from magazines and television is accurate.  Both Mario Batali, the restaurateur and Food Network star (photographed with Hammertown Barn owner Joan Osofsky, left) and Carolyne Roehm, the fashion designer turned luxe lifestyle-and-garden guru, are larger than life characters—honest-to-goodness celebrities. This weekend, you can meet them at local book signings at Privet House in Warren, CT, and Hammertown Barn in Rhinebeck.

Rural Intelligence Arts
A confession: I have been star-struck by Carolyne Roehm for two decades since my days as a fact-checker at New York magazine when she was a fashion designer and the queen of “nouvelle society,” which New York chronicled in exhaustive detail. If anyone epitomized 1980s uptown glamour,  it was Carolyne (right), who was then married to the financier Henry Kravis. In 1990, when I worked at Avenue magazine, I edited a story about the landscape architects who literally moved mountains on her estate, Weatherstone, in Sharon, CT.  In 1993, when she and Kravis announced they were getting divorced, I wrote a eulogy for their marriage, Fractured Fairy Tale , in The New York Times. )  Two years ago, I wrote a story about her for the “Habitats” column in The New York Times Real Estate section called The Best Revenge (Isn’t It Always). Carolyne is as charming and captivating as she appears in magazine articles.  All of her sumptuous books on gardening and entertaining—including the new A Passion for Blue & White—are inspirational eye candy.
Rural Intelligence ArtsHow did Hammertown Barn’s Joan Osofsky lure celebrity chef Mario Batali back to her Rhinebeck store for a signing of his latest book Spain: A Culinary Road Trip. (The last time he visited Hammertown people waited outside in the snow to meet him!) “Mario is married to Susie Cahn.  Susie is the daughter of Miles and Lillian Cahn, who owned Coach Bags and until a year or two ago, Coach Farm cheese,” explains Joan. “I am extremely good friends with Miles and Lillian.  It was really quite a surprise, as I never expected he would come.  People were calling and asking if he was coming again, and I laughed.  I told this to Miles and Lillian, never expecting that Mario would take time in his busy schedule to do this again, and the next thing I know he’s planned to drive up,  stay over at his inlaws (in Gallatin) and come to Rhinebeck!”
Rural Intelligence ArtsDecember 6; 3 - 6 PM
Carolyne Roehm signs A Passion for Blue & White at Privet House
4 Cornwall Road, Warren CT; 860.868.1800
December 7;  12 - 1 PM
Mario Batali signs Spain: A Culinary Road Trip* at Hammertown Rhinebeck
Montgomery Row/Route 9; 845.876.1450

(*only books purchased at Hammertown will be signed. You’re encouraged to buy the book in advance at Hammertown in Rhinebeck or Pine Plains.)

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Posted by Dan Shaw on 12/02/08 at 03:17 AM • Permalink