After you’ve abandoned your New Year’s resolutions, we’d like you to direct your attention to this compendium of advice we’ve found unwaveringly useful and true month to month, year to year. It covers everything from the culinary to the sartorial to the behavioral and beyond. Consider this guide a starter kit for how to be a modern gentleman.
Sure, you could invest in a knife-block set bristling with blades, but you really need only one, provided it’s the right one. This handsome knife from New West KnifeWorks in Wyoming will provide you with a lifetime of perfectly sliced onions, exquisitely carved roast beef and precisely sharpened pencils. Eight-inch chef’s knife, $269, newwestknifeworks.com
2. PRACTICE SAFE TEXT • Even though a text seems disposable and impermanent, it’s not. As with e-mail, the rule is: If you’re not willing to share it with the world, don’t write it.
3. POCKET IT • Keep your phone in your pocket in restaurants and bars, places specifically designed for people to enjoy one another’s company. Bonus: If you’re not reading Facebook updates, you’re more likely to meet the girl at the end of the bar.
4. CONTENT CONSENT • Just because you’re cool with sharing a drunken group selfie doesn’t mean your friends are. Ask for their permission before you post or tweet.
If you’re going to learn how to make only one
drink, this is the one
The sour is the basis of some of the world’s best drinks. The formula is two parts strong, one part sour, three quarters of a part sweet. Commit this to heart and you’ll be able to make classic margaritas and daiquiris and improvise countless others. Shake the ingredients below over ice and strain into a coupe glass.
ONE RECIPE. INFINITE DRINKS
|DRINK||2 STRONG||1 SOUR||3/4 SWEET||FLOURISH|
|7. Mezcalrita||mescal||lime juice||simplesyrup||salt|
|8. Mojito||white rum||lime juice||simple syrup||muddled mint|
|9. Sidecar||cognac||lemon juice||Cointreau||orange slice|
|10. Pisco Sour||pisco||lime juice||simple syrup||egg white|
|11. Bee’s Knees||gin||lemon juice||honey||lavender|
|Watch styles come and go (remember when bigger was better and digital was novel?), but nothing is as cool as a Rolex. And the only thing cooler than a Rolex is a vintage Rolex. The best place to buy (or sell) vintage Rolexes is Bobswatches.com, a serious site with a funny name. You can get a Submariner for two grand less than the price of a new one, or break the bank on a Cosmograph Daytona, a.k.a. “the Paul Newman.” Rolex Cosmograph Daytona, $80,000|
We’ve all met the guy who can uncork a bottle of wine with his shoe or open a beer with a Bic lighter, but how many men can claim to practice the showy and surprisingly easy art of sabering open a bottle of champagne? Well, every man who reads this. We recommend viewing a YouTube tutorial, but here are the basics.
NO CHAMPAGNE, NO GAIN
14. READY • Get that bottle of champagne super cold. Warm champagne will gush out, wasting precious bubbles. Remove the foil capsule and cage from the bottle, taking care not to accidentally pull out the cork.
15. AIM • Hold the bottom of the champagne bottle with your weak hand and point it away from yourself, other people, windows and food. Locate the seam that runs vertically along the neck. See how it meets the lip of the bottle? That’s the weak spot, where you’ll concentrate your force.
16. FIRE • With your strong hand take a chef’s knife (at least eight inches long). Lay the blade flat on the neck of the bottle, with the dull side pointing away from you (the sharp edge will break). In one brisk movement slide it forward along the neck as if you were punching straight out. Be sure to follow through.
17. ENJOY • Watch the cork and lip of the bottle snap off. Hold the open bottle aloft and bask in the applause.
|A motorcycle jacket doesn’t need to be leather to be cool. And we mean cool both figuratively and literally. Waxed cotton is favored for its waterproof yet breathable qualities, and it’s what makes this jacket by Belstaff so tough. It says “motorcycle” but doesn’t overstate it, so you can look badass even without a bike. Belstaff Roadmaster jacket, $850, mrporter.com|
Set up this handsome Pro-Ject Debut turntable ($399) at your next party so your guests can play DJ and marvel at old-school high fidelity.
|Black cap-toe lace-up oxfords are the most versatile dress shoes on the planet: You can wear them with black, blue or gray suits, with tuxedos and with black or blue denim. The trick is getting a classic pair with sleek lines and a slightly rounded toe. Why slightly rounded? Because classic lines always work. Square-toed shoes went out of style five years ago, and pointy-toed shoes did last year. Church’s, Gucci, Ferragamo and Grenson make exceptional styles year in and year out. Church’s Hong Kong oxfords, $535, mrporter.com|
31. HOLD THE DOOR • Not just for women but for men too. It’s gallant, it’s a dying art, and certain women find it attractive.
32. GIVE UP YOUR SEAT • It’s shocking how few men yield their seat to pregnant women, the elderly or the disabled. Lead by example.
33. HELP OLD LADIES ACROSS THE STREET • Enough said. And depositing into the karma bank feels amazing.