Based in Hartford County, Marissa Meade is the fashion and lifestyle blogger behind Style Cusp. Like most things, we discovered her through Instagram, where her perfectly curated food shots caught our eye. She considers herself a "closet foodie," can point you in the direction of all the best sales and just launched her first capsule clothing collection with Privilege. We sat down with Marissa to discuss her favorite gluten free menu items, the most instagram-able restaurant in Connecticut and more! You can follow her on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest.
Do you think that food and fashion have anything in common?
Yes. I am a firm believer that 'style' isn't just in fashion but relates to your whole life. For me, I like nice clothes and am willing to pay more for quality. It's the same with food. You won't find me at chain restaurants (besides Starbucks and the occasional Chik-fil-A!). I'd much rather go to hole in the wall places or independent places that use fresh, local, or organic ingredients. The food is always 100x better!
You're now a regular attendee at New York Fashion Week, what is your fashion week survival diet?
If I get to eat one full meal a day at fashion week, I'm lucky. Days are so busy and spent running around the city to get to shows, presentations, and meetings that it's often really hard to find time to actually sit down for a meal. I usually try to bring some type of snack/protein bar with me, and usually make dinner my large meal at the end of a long day. I drink water constantly, and grab green juices or smoothies whenever I can.
Your blog has given you the chance to travel to a lot of really great places. What is the most memorable meal you’ve had while traveling and from where?
There's so many! One of my favorites that instantly came to mind was last summer in Bar Harbor, where my family vacations every year. There's tons of good restaurants there, but we always go to Stewman's Lobster Pound. Their lobster cobb salad is out of this world amazing and I love their blueberry infused teas/lemonades. You can also sit right on their lobster pound which is a fun tourist thing to do.
I saw you instagram your room service at the last fashion conference you went to. What is your go to room service order?
If it's breakfast, then I'll order an omelette with a side of homefries and fruit. If I need some fuel during the day, it's a grilled chicken salad. And a nighttime snack? Fries or nachos all the way.
You mentioned to me while we were at dinner that you have celiac disease. In Connecticut, what are great gluten free restaurants/have great gluten free menu items?
A lot of restaurants are becoming more aware of celiac and offering lots of options on their menu which is awesome for us celiacs! Bricco in West Hartford is the best spot for gluten free pasta dishes. Dee's One Smart Cookie is an entirely gluten/dairy/gmo (and more!) free bakery with incredible donuts. If I'm craving a burger, I'll go to Max Burger which offers gluten free buns and fries. I am still searching for a great gluten free pizza spot though!
What is the best meal you’ve ever eaten in Connecticut and from where?
This is such a hard question! I'm such a foodie and love all types of foods so it's hard to narrow it down.
Do you like to cook and entertain at all?
Yes, I love to cook both for myself and for others. Cooking/being in the kitchen is a huge stress reliever for me, so when I've got a lot going on and need an escape, I take to the kitchen.
What is your favorite thing to cook?
I love experimenting with new recipes - I recently tried homemade Pad Thai and it was awesome - but also have my go to’s like shrimp fajitas or grilled chicken Greek salads. I love a warm chili in the winter and since I’m Italian, I crave a good homemade sauce with meatballs.
What is the most instagram-able restaurant/cafe/bar etc. in Connecticut?
I love taking photos at Bar Taco! Their food is always neatly styled and their restaurant colors are appealing to the eye.
Last question: What’s your #1 tip for posting a good food Instagram?
Definitely natural light. Being near a window or better yet, outside, is best! I try not to make the photo look too busy either, but have one or two focus dishes with a fun drink and maybe an accessory of mine - like a cute wallet or handbag (because I have to infuse the photo with a little fashion!)
Stay tuned for Part 2 of our feature on Marissa coming next week!