A La Carte
When you find a Bulthaup kitchen, an Alessi toilet not available in the U.S., a Waterworks bathtub, an Italian bathroom sink that drains from behind the basin, and walls covered in Calcutta marble, you must ask: Who lives here?
Wednesday evening at an open house to celebrate the completed renovation of a duplex condominium on 31st Street, we found out.
Turns out, it’s a barefoot man with an infectious grin and clear blue eyes who knows exactly what he wants. For that, he turned first to Bulthaup. “I’d known Bruno for six years when we did his kitchen, general manager, Alison Tilley told The Georgetown Dish. “We did the kitchen and introduced him to Christy Schlesinger, and the rest is history.” Schlesinger Associates Architects, that is.
As Christy says, “Bruno is unique and the best client. It was a nice melding of similar styles and vision.”
And that vision? Bruno Lassus explains, “I like open space and no wood” His grin widens. “You see, my grandfather made wood furniture in France. We had so much of it …” Pressing for more explanation, “I like the cold of stone …” A few choice pieces of red gum tree wood custom cabinets, but otherwise, stone and tile and marble prevail.
As 42 Degree Catering prepared elegant appetizers in the kitchen, guests enjoyed the view. Developer Greg Rooney, vice president of The Bernstein Companies said, "This is exactly what Georgetown needs."
Classic modernism. Corbusier black leather sofas, Norman Foster dining table, large red abstract painting by contemporary Vietnamese artist. Sound by Bang & Olufsen. Bruno points proudly to the 1980’s speakers he had rewired from 220 to 110 U.S. voltage. What you don’t see is a television. Another grin, “I haven’t had one for 30 years.”
“I like to make people happy,” Bruno said when I asked him what he does. Eventually I learned Bruno Lassus began his professional life as a medical doctor, then a dentist. Now, vice president at 3M Cogent Inc. conducting bio-metrics around the globe. Add photographer and kayaker to his vitae. And it was two years living in a tropical rainforest where he learned the joys of going barefoot. The better to enjoy all that cool marble under foot.
“Best office I’ve ever worked in” proclaimed Tim MacLean, as we meandered around the Celeste fig trees, past the Deerfield purple garlic, Mexican sour gherkins, rhubarb and artichoke bushes, tasting Killarney raspberries, chocolate mint and lemon basil along the way.
Clydes' Willow Creek Farm gardener and farmer extraordinaire since 2008, MacLean graciously gave The Georgetown Dish a private tour.
We met at the restaurant (subject of part two) and walked the short distance up a hill, across a small bridge and past a pond before reaching the two restored barns.
MacLean unlocked the gate, and resident bee-keeper, Patrick Staniford would have been proud.
In both hives, all workers were, in fact, as busy as ... well, bees, pollinating wildflowers and making honey for the restaurant.
Vegetables and herbs from the acre and a half “boutique” garden in the middle of a wildlife habitat on the grounds of a former Broadlands, Virginia dairy farm make their way to the dining table every day.
On 21 raised beds, MacLean grows everything from Chires baby corn to Mortgage Lifter tomatoes. Following organic farming methods, he employs "beneficial insects like praying mantises and ladybugs" instead of toxic pesticides.
With his farmhand buddies, a “funkified gnome” called Basil and Scary, the scarecrow, MacLean greets his daily visitors with varying degrees of eagerness. “Mortal enemy, the groundhog," MacLean explains, “dine and dash. They wait for huge tomatoes to turn the perfect shade of ripeness, climb over the fence, and then can’t quite manage to carry all their stash to safety. Racoons and deer and rabbits all come by regularly for a sniff and a nibble at the gourmet salad bar.
The little purple peppers were safe to try, but those “million Scoville Ghost peppers" were definitely not on the tasting tour. To give you an idea, a Habanero chili pepper’s heat range is 350,000 Scovilles. However, a preview of lunch did include sampling the Brandywine tomatoes and Little Finger eggplants.
A tour of the restaurant, a unique American inn designed from four restored farmhouse buildings and furnished with museum-quality antiques, is the subject of part two. And oh yes, a farm fresh lunch will be served.
Clyde's Willow Creek Farm is at 42920 Broadlands Boulevard in Broadlands, VA. Tel: 571.209.1200
“Neither rain nor shine nor 100 degree weather can keep people away from the GBA,” observed Sue Hamilton, Georgetown Business Association events chair as over 100 guests arrived at Georgetown Smile for the aptly named GBA July “Summer Sizzle” networking event Wednesday evening.
Third generation dentist, Dr. A.J. Peretz of Georgetown Smile graciously hosted the open house with “nibbles and drinks” for Georgetown business leaders, healthcare providers, and friends.
Marketing consultant, Emilia Pawlowski explained why she loves working at Georgetown Smile, “It’s very high tech and you get the most thorough assessment and treatment. And I’ve never met a man who loves dentistry so much.”
Guests enjoyed wine and soft drinks, crudite and salad as they mingled on the deck. Inside, representatives from Sonicare and Colgate offered samples and information. Two Philips Sonicare rechargeable toothbrushes were raffled during the party.
Janelle Jimason, massage therapist at Eastern Holistic Arts was on hand to demonstrate her favorite technique. “I really love Myofascial Release” she told The Georgetown Dish. Janelle also offers sports massage and different stretches, but her specialty is applying gentle sustained pressure in the Myofascial connective tissue to eliminate pain and restore motion. As EHA owner Tracy Hackett explained, “I’m happy to be partnering with other health professionals and GBA members. We have a lot to offer.”
Next month, meet the GBA August 17 at House of Sweden.