Meet Chrissy Pollina, an emerging jewelry designer with a healthy appetite living in NYC. I first met Chrissy when we were youngins, bartending at high-volume nightclubs all over New York. Chrissy was always that rare beauty that oozed purity and class in an industry that, let’s face is, isn’t pure and is often the opposite of classy. I immediately knew I liked her.
At the time, Chrissy and I would bond over our love of restaurants and living in the East Village, often times ending up at Yaffa Cafe or 7A at 5am. We’d swap stories about nightmare customers that night, and dish about our dreams outside of the industry; two topics which make for some serious bonding. We’ve been close lady friends ever since.
Since those days, Chrissy has gone on to become extremely knowledgable on clean-eating, a practice that includes eating small meals 5-8 times a day, cutting out processed foods and refined sugars, and assimilating a gluten-free lifestyle. Dr. David Katz puts it best: “Food that’s clean is food that’s for the most part real food and not encumbered with things that compromise health: artificial flavorings, artificial colorings, sugar substitutes.”
I wanted to inject some healthy energy into Taste the Style and I knew Chrissy would be the perfect fit. She’s got a way with words, an eye for design and photography, and some tasty recipes up her sleeve. Meet the girl behind those ridiculously toned arms, Chrissy Pollina.
Take it away, girl!
CP: I am a freelance artist and jewelry designer currently working to build my brand Vice & Virtue NYC.
CP: Williamsburg, Brooklyn
What inspired you to start eating clean?
CP: I was sick for many years in my teens and early 20’s and no one could figure out what was causing the problem. Changing my diet and eliminating gluten had a huge impact on my health. I learned the importance of listening to what my body was telling me, and I’ve stuck with it ever since.
What blogs do you look at for food inspiration?
CP: Oh wow, there are so many. I recently discovered Manger which is absolutely gorgeous and inspiring, based in the countryside of Médoc, France. Some other favorites are Happyyolks, My New Roots, Sprouted Kitchen, and The Year in Food, all of which have an amazing realness and rawness to their presentation and emphasize the use of whole foods and seasonal ingredients. As far as gluten-free blogs, Gluten Free Girl and the Chef is definitely at the top of the game.
Your favorite NYC restaurants
CP: I absolutely love Reynard in my new hood. I also love Café Mogador in my old hood, Freeman’s for the ambiance, Five Leaves for brunch, Maison Premiere for happy hour, and ABC kitchen for just about anything.
CP: The steak tartare at Blue Ribbon. It’s the best I’ve had and it’s also served with house-made waffle cut potato chips instead of the typical baguette, making it a win for the GF crowd! Honorable mention to the grilled corn at Cafe Habana and shaved raw fluke with crushed olives and chiles at ABC Kitchen.
Where do you shop?
CP: I’m a little in love with Free People and their whole hippie-chic aesthetic. I’m also lucky to be surrounded by a ton of great boutiques in Williamsburg. Old Hollywood in Greenpoint is one of my favorites.
Who are your celebrity girl crushes?
CP: A few ladies that I think are amazing are Mila Kunis, Penelope Cruz, Michelle Williams, Emma Stone, Cate Blanchett, and the always beautiful (and clean-eating!) Gwyneth Paltrow.
What’s your easy, go-to dish to cook at home?
CP: I like to make a healthy version of baked eggplant parmesan sans breading/frying. Best served with a huge green salad and a glass of wine (wink, wink.)