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BEssARION is the new Alexander Wang
Georgia-born fashion designer BEssARION is known for his sculptural, almost futuristic separates, clean silhouettes and perfectly balanced simplicity. Claim him as a favorite now, then roll your eyes when everybody else “discovers him” in a year.
Vegetarian borscht is the new meat borscht
Sure, beef-laden beet glop will sustain you through a hard Siberian winter, but we also love Russian blogger Olya Malisheva’s way lighter take on the classic Eastern European dish. She swaps out meat and potatoes for kalamata olives and red pepper, then spoons a bit of goat cheese on top. Eat it guilt-free while you’re watching all those rock-hard Olympic bods.
Timati is the new Pitbull
Since his discovery on Star Factory (the Russian version of American Idol), this irreverent and heavily tattooed bad-boy rapper has collaborated with P. Diddy, Timbaland and Flo Rida. His “In the Club” might be a little too, well, “In Da Club” for your taste, but we’re betting it’ll blow up in the States soon. (And we just dare you to get it out of your head.)
Miroslava Duma is the new Anna Dello Russo
The Moscow-based street-style icon’s Instagram account is an ongoing photo shoot of runway shows, enviable selfies and emerging fashion trends--plus she regularly hangs with Michael Kors and Giorgio Armani. OK, enough with the name-dropping. Follow her on Insta already.
The Scent of Pine is the new Interpreter of Maladies
Lara Vapnyar’s funny, often sad fiction takes on the immigrant experience in a way that anyone can relate to. Her new novel, about a love affair between a Russian émigré and a reluctant academic, brings to mind the great Jhumpa Lahiri. And you know we don’t throw Jhumpa comparisons around lightly.
Żubrówka is the new Stoli
Whatever, Stolichnaya. These days, the real Russian mixer of choice is Żubrówka, a vaguely almond-flavored liquor distilled from rare Eastern European bison grass. You can nab it in most American liquor stores and use it to make any number of vodka-based cocktails--we're partial to this sweet-and-sour concoction. Na zdorov’ye!
Eugenia Kuzmina is the new Milla Jovovich
The fashion model turned actress is swapping the catwalk for the red carpet, having recently made a cameo in John Turturro’s new film, Fading Gigolo, and starring opposite Brad Pitt in David Ayer’s forthcoming World War II drama, Fury. She’s also trained in the Slovakian martial art of Krav Maga--so if that doesn’t get her cast as a sexy Russian spy, we don’t know what will.
As you’re hopping from one Olympic party to the next, keep it interesting: Don’t just chitchat about what Putin said or which Dostoyevsky book is your favorite. Add a bit of contemporary culture to your banter.
We’ve created a cheat sheet to what’s trending now in Russia--from the hat all the cool girls in Moscow are wearing to the actress primed to make her American breakout to the buzzy liquor that’s way better than your freezer-burned bottle of Smirnoff.
View the slideshow for all things Russki...and febulus.
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