Presidential Pasta: The Obamas’ Italian Dinner Date in N.Y.C.

04/14/2014 at 01:48 PM ET

President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama Dine at Maialino in NYC
Rex Features/Startraks

That’s amore!

President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama continued their exploration of N.Y.C.’s restaurant scene on Friday with a pre-theater dinner at Maialino, Danny Meyer’s popular Roman-inspired trattoria inside the Gramercy Park Hotel.

Joined by friends including Valerie Jarrett and Ahmad Rashad, the first couple kicked off the weekend with an early supper before heading to the Broadway revival of A Raisin in the Sun, starring Denzel Washington, at the Barrymore Theatre.

On previous Big Apple excursions, the POTUS and FLOTUS have dined at hot spots like ABC Kitchen, Blue Hill and Red Rooster, which means the White House prepared them properly for what must have been a delicious meal.

With its rustic wooden tables, weathered wood floors, and bread and salumi stations, Maialino (which means “Little Pig”) feels festively Italian. While there’s no official word on what the group ordered, we hope they sampled the bucatini all’Amatriciana, fried artichokes, braised lamb with onions and olive oil cake.

Fittingly, both parties are all about fresh produce: The restaurant cooks with seasonal supplies from local farms, and the White House Kitchen Garden’s veggies are in full bloom for spring.

Let that inspire you to hit up the nearest farmer’s market and stock up on pecorino for cacio e pepe, fennel, celery and citrus for an insalata, or spinach and mushrooms to sauté with garlic and lemon.

—Brooke Showell

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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms
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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms

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On a clear day, you can see forever—or at least that’s the wicked thought behind L.A. designer Agi Berliner’s transparent idea: see-through jeans. Exhibitionists notwithstanding, most folks wear them over bathing suits or as attention-getting evening wear with halters, garter belts and body stockings. Created for the disco crowd, the $34 jeans are selling like, well, hot pants. In just six weeks, 25,000 pairs have already been sold in such major department store chains as Macy’s, Bonwit’s and Saks.

“What’s limiting American designers is that we’re afraid to do something different,” says Berliner, 32, a Hungarian émigré who fled with her family to the U.S. in 1956. Agi thought up the gimmick in London while marveling at the way plastics were being employed by designers of punk fashion. In her L.A. office, where she designs for La Parisienne junior sportswear, Agi spent five days on the phone and six weeks testing to come up with the right plastic.

Agi herself tried out the French-cut jeans with the zipper in front, and quickly found several problems: Some plastics tore away from stitching, others wouldn’t bend and all fogged with perspiration. The ideal material proved to be a vinyl supplied by a bookbinder. The steam was eliminated with a series of vents behind the knees and in the crotch. “They’re no hotter than polyester pants,” claims Agi, “and if you wear them with tights, they won’t stick to your legs.”

Whatever the discomfort and despite the problem of Saturday night feverishness, discomaniacs report one major advantage of the plastic pants: no laundry bills. To keep Berliner’s see-through jeans clear, all the wearer needs is a little Windex.

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Bob on

Too bad they didn’t choke on a meatball……..

Emily on

They are such a loving pair, and it’s great to see that in the White House.
Danny Meyer restaurants turn out delicious food. Hope the Obamas enjoyed their meal.

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