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Charles Pan-Fried Chicken

Charles Gabriel started selling fried chicken from a folding table along Amsterdam Avenue in the 1990s. Over the next 23 years, the North Carolina native garnered a cult following for his chicken, which he fries in a huge cast-iron skillet (per the golden advice of his mother). The recipe hasn’t changed, nor should it—it’s deemed by many to be the best in the city. After closing his previous Harlem storefront, during the pandemic, Gabriel opened two new locations last year—one in Harlem, and one on the Upper West Side. Two more locations are on their way. Soon there will be no excuse not to try Charles Pan-Fried Chicken. ( —Clara Molot


Sunday Matinee

Caroline Martin (played by Brooke Smith) makes her on-screen entrance in The Silence of the Lambs belting out Tom Petty’s “American Girl while cruising down a Memphis highway into the night. While Smith was 24 years old and just breaking into the industry, she still made the bold—and ultimately futile—request that her character sing a punk-rock song instead because she didn’t think of herself as the quintessential American girl. Growing up on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, Smith felt like an outsider. Then, in the mid-80s, she discovered her place in the Lower East Side’s punk-rock community. At CBGB’s notorious Sunday-afternoon gigs, Smith photographed friends and bands such as Bad Brains, Agnostic Front, Cro-Mags, Murphy’s Law, and Underdog. Forty years later, these photographs make up Sunday Matinee. Smith’s strong sense of belonging offers an intimate look into the intense but often misunderstood hard-core scene. ($39.99, ) —Carolina de Armas


The Last Archive

For the past two seasons of her podcast, The Last Archive, Harvard professor and New Yorker staff writer Jill Lepore has been trying to solve a murder: Who killed truth? Using her tools as a historian in the style of a 1930s radio drama, Lepore looks for frauds and liars. She draws listeners into well-researched stories of unsolved murders, American elections, vaccine conspiracies, and the foundation for the #MeToo movement. This season, though, Lepore is in search of the good guys—the truth seekers. She talks to high-school teachers, encyclopedia salespeople, and public librarians, looking for ways to resurrect the truth. ( —Clara Molot


All the Beauty and the Bloodshed

In 2014, American photographer Nan Goldin was prescribed OxyContin for the torturous pain of tendonitis. Her allotted 40 milligrams a day quickly ballooned to 450. In rehab, Goldin researched America’s opioid crisis and found that the family name behind the drug was the same one immortalized on the walls of museums such as the Louvre, the V&A, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Laura Poitras’s new documentary, All the Beauty and the Bloodshed, juxtaposes Goldin’s artistic rise with the fall of the family that manufactured her relapse—the Sacklers. The film gives special attention to Goldin’s activist group, PAIN (Prescription Addiction Intervention Now), which staged die-ins—people playing dead in piles of OxyContin bottles—at the museums and galleries that took Sackler donations. The film is finally in theaters after having won the Golden Lion at this year’s Venice Film Festival. ( —Jensen Davis

Granny Squares

Wallshoppe x Lingua Franca

Like so many good things in life, wallpaper is a commitment. Or, rather, it used to be. Now brands such as Wallshoppe are offering removable varieties that have the same impact without the mess or permanence. The purveyor’s latest collaboration is with Lingua Franca, the New York fashion line founded by Rachelle Hruska MacPherson. Many of the 132 styles, including the Embroidered Birdcages and Granny Squares, nod to Lingua Franca’s cheekily embroidered knits; the alphabet pattern can even be personalized. It’s an easy, fuss-free way to dress up a room and give it a new “outfit” for each passing season. (from $68 to $225, —Ashley Baker


Le Monde Béryl

Le Monde Béryl’s Mary Jane flats are classics for good reason. Now, as holiday parties beckon, the brand has trotted out a new collection of velvet styles that go swimmingly with dressed-up ensembles of all persuasions. Brick, bone, olive green, dark smoke, and even tiger-print are available, and they represent a high-style (and far more comfortable) alternative to the season’s more predictable glittery party shoes. The beige and black varieties even come in an 80-mm. block heel, so those looking for a bit more height will be cared for as well. ($534, —Ashley Baker

Issue No. 176
November 26, 2022
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Issue No. 176
November 26, 2022