Sunday, July 1, 2012


You know when something happens and you feel like your life has been changed? That can go either way - good or not so much. I was fortunate to spend the afternoon at a event given by a woman I had met socially a couple of times to get a glimpse of what makes her tick. That woman is the one and only Bevy Smith of Harlem, USA. She is an incredible powerhouse of personality and chutzpah in 6 inch stilettos. Unlike most, she backs it up with an impressive resume in the worlds of fashion, style, print and television. Miss Smith has parlayed her successful career and love for hosting into a business called Dinner With Bevy. These are chic and intimate dinners where she matches celebrities and trendsetters with big name consumer brands. Not a bad gig.   

Bevy decided to create a similar vibe for 50 of her "twitpals" and burgeoning entrepreneurs and dubbed it Dining With Bevy: Life With Vision. She did not disappoint. The company, the venue and the food were stellar. The inaugural event was held at the Aureole Restaurant in NYC. She initially warned us not to come "trying to be fabulous or to network but to fellowship and to be prepare to hear the real deal about what it takes to follow your true passion." The guest speaker was Emil Wilbekin, Editor-at-Large of Essence Magazine and one of Bevy's BFFs. I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Wilbekin on a prior occasion and was excited to hear about his journey. He spoke openly and eloquently about the transitions and challenges he faced in his career where he worked for magazines such as Vibe, Giant and now Essence. He gave us just what we all needed to hear - that the path isn't also clear but perseverance prevails.

Emil Wilbekin & Bevy Smith
So this is where the life changing part comes in - the energy, the camaraderie, the vision, the fellowship engulfed the room.  Of course I became emotional, the one who cries at tv commercials about orphaned children in Africa, when hearing about one sister's journey that resonated with me personally (no need to get into that now *blushes with embarrassment*).  Everyone connected in a room full of people who were complete strangers just a few hours before. I know it sounds cliche but the event was so inspiring that I have been on a high ever since. Even picked up new lingo: "co-conspirers, nay-sayers, vibrate higher."

As I mentioned, the venue was Aureole located at 135 W. 42nd St in NYC, one block from Bryant Park. Being the foodie that I am, I've been to some amazing restaurants in my time, *clears throat* most notably Auberge du Soleil in Napa Valley. However I'm a sucker for a restaurant with classically elegant decor. The space is filled with rich wood panels, leather seating and an elevated glass and lighting sculpted wine case obviously created by a with a sommelier in mind. Dining With Bevy: Life With Vision was held in the private dining room that features a palette of rich earthy textures and silver finishes. Bespoke (that's designer-ese for custom) sculptural sconces backed with silver wallcoverings wrapped the room creating a warm glow. The room is topped with a recessed ceiling cone which houses the same exquisite chandelier made of silver acrylic tiles showcased throughout the restaurant. And yes, the food was great too. Wish I had "instagramed" my plates. We even had our choice of signature cocktails created for the event - I selected 'Vibrate Higher', of course. Check out some pics of the interior.




It was all just FABULOUS...

Peace and Blessings,

Restaurant photos courtesy of
Illustration by Tamika Blockett