A KULE Guide to the Best Cacio e Pepe in NYC

We’re big fans of cacio e pepe at KULE, hence the Cacio e Pepe tee from our new July capsule. While cacio e pepe is a fairly simple dish (it really only has three ingredients), there’s nothing like a classic that is done perfectly. Just like a tee 😉! We rounded up our standout spots in NYC to go for the best plate — with Nikki’s own personal favorites — and wanted to share the delicious secrets! So read on, and grab a fork… and a tee 🍝.

kule cacio e pepe july tee
New KULE Cacio e Pepe tee worn with the new black Syd blazer

Photographed by Mei Tao
The Modern Cacio e Pepe

The Modern Cacio e Pepe

The Cacio e Pepe Kap (coming soon)

The Cacio e Pepe Kap (coming soon)

Nikki’s favorite places to get cacio e pepe are I Sodi and Sant Ambroeus. I Sodi’s cacio e pepe is a classic spaghetti with black pepper and pecorino. A comfort dish made classically perfect. Owner Rita Sodi says it’s her most popular pasta dish. Sant Ambroeus (which has multiple locations, but only some offer cacio e pepe, so check first!) uses a tonnarelli pasta — which is thicker than a spaghetti and has square edges instead of round — great for a perfect coating of aged pecorino romano and fresh ground pepper.

Altro Paradiso is a fan favorite (and a popular place to snap a food pic). Unlike the traditional cacio e pepe preparation, theirs uses giant thick and hollow candele noodles, great for the cheese to get into. You may even need a knife with this dish.

At Piccola Cucina — which has three locations in New York (one of which is dangerously close to KULE’s office) — your pasta comes right to the table in a giant pecorino wheel, from which the server plates for you. So, you know it has a good amount of cacio.

Lupa on Thompson — a NY-famous Roman osteria — is widely known for its cacio e pepe, something you’re basically required to order when you go. It’s made with a thinner “bavette” noodle, so there’s a delightful cacio/pepe to pasta ratio.

Via Carota is a well-known and much loved trattoria in Greenwich Village. Their cacio e pepe dish is piled high with cheese, and they use a tonnarelli noodle. If you can get a table, this is top place for a plate.

The rigatoni cacio e pepe at Charlie Bird seems to only be on the lunch menu (there’s a traditional spaghetti version on the dinner one), but if you’re a cacio e pepe connoisseur, you should head there midday to try it. The flavors cover the grooves and openings of the pasta, making every single bite a treat.

La Pecora Bianca — which has six locations around NYC — uses bucatini noodles with their cacio e pepe. Bucatini is a hollow spaghetti, so it makes hidden nooks of cheese the same way rigatoni does, but with the joyful fork twirl of any long noodle. They also have a cacio e pepe fritter appetizer on their menu, if you want a full course cacio e pepe meal.

Are you hungry yet? 🍝 

kule cacio e pepe gif logo

Nikki’s Greece Travel Diary: Filled with Sights, Seafood and Stripes

Nikki’s love for travel stems from living abroad, visiting places for work, exploring with family and friends, and searching for inspiration. She recently went to Greece for the second time, and came back with memorable stories, experiences of great sights and food, and — lucky for us — travel tips and recommendations! Read on to see everything from her trip, including how she packed, the amazing places she went, and of course, the best spots to eat.

nikki greece travel diary mykonos feature
Nikki exploring in Mykonos wearing KULE Silk Ponza shirt and Silk Elba Pareo (new for July!).

Nikki went to Greece with some of her family and friends. She spent a week in Mykonos followed by a week traveling to different islands. Between touring on foot, swimming, and dining, Nikki packed only what she knew she would wear. That included swimsuits, caftans or loose fitting dresses, pareos for the beach, flat sandals, and some workout wear.

Nikki says that slippery leather or plastic sole sandals aren’t easy to wear on the cobblestones in Greece, and recommends packing sandals that won’t slip and slide, like these from The Row, which she wore the most on her trip.
“I like challenging myself to wear every single thing I pack and I think I only didn’t wear two things. I wore a lot of Greece-appropriate white and blue, plus some of our colorful KULE items like the crochet Harmonie.” – Nikki
KULE Harmonie

KULE Harmonie

The Row Sandals

The Row Sandals

Isabel Marant Étoile Pants

Isabel Marant Étoile Pants

Prada Raffia Tote

Prada Raffia Tote

Jacquemus Hat

Jacquemus Hat

The Row x Oliver Peoples Sunglasses

The Row x Oliver Peoples Sunglasses

The Silk Ponza

The Silk Ponza

The Silk Elba Pareo

The Silk Elba Pareo

Eres Swimsuit

Eres Swimsuit

Sophie Buhai Earrings

Sophie Buhai Earrings

Hermès Sandals

Hermès Sandals

Bottega Veneta Pouch

Bottega Veneta Pouch

The Row x Oliver People Sunglasses

The Row x Oliver People Sunglasses

As for the food, Nikki says it’s the best. The seafood was a highlight, as everything is so fresh. One of her favorite restaurants was Spilia in Mykonos located on a rock, carved out in the water. You can go by boat to have the freshest seafood.

“Spilia in Mykonos is a restaurant on a rock, carved out in the water. You can go by boat to have the freshest seafood.” – Nikki
At the beach club near Spilia.

“I’m not a dress person, but I really felt they were so much easier and fit the island/beach vibe. I love this one by Bode. I also packed a floral one by Michael Kors, a green one by Lemaire, and a crochet one by Auralee” – Nikki

Nikki describes Mykonos as one big party and says that all the restaurants have music playing as you eat. There are plenty of nightclubs — her favorite being Scorpios — that are so fun and unlike anywhere else.

“I was at Mykonos for a week. It is a big party. All the restaurants have music playing as you eat. It’s so fun and unlike anywhere else.” – Nikki
“I wore a lot of pareos (I love KULE’s new striped silk one, Lisa Corti, and Totême) tunics, caftans, and dresses. It’s easy to wear them over swimsuits, my favorite of which are by Eres. The striped caftan I’m wearing here is by MIKOH. Sarah Clary turned me onto the brand. I cannot resist a stripe.” – Nikki
“Look at the size of the prawns! The size and freshness of the seafood was amazing.” – Nikki
“This is at Nammos in Mykonos for dinner. It’s a very cool vibe with a tranquil setting in the sand. We went with a big group, but it is also very romantic.” – Nikki

On the other islands, it was more about the scenery and serenity. The picturesque sights are incredible, with vibrant colors and crystal-clear waters.

“I loved Paros. It’s a port city that’s very young, vibrant, and fun.” – Nikki
“This is a cove in Polyaigos. I loved being in the water. We did paddle boarding and water skiing a lot. The waters are so beautiful and clear.” – Nikki

As for shopping Nikki says, “I got a pareo and a striped cover-up — go figure!” Other than that, she didn’t really shop. She says it’s mostly about the water and beaches, food, and exploring.

A specific spot Nikki loved and recommends going to — from the idyllic setting, to the architecture, design, and the views — is The Rooster in Antiparos. It was a perfect finale for her trip.

Featuring one of the views at The Rooster in Antiparos.
“The Rooster is in Antiparos, one of the most secluded islands in Greece. It’s so serene.” – Nikki

Until the next trip! Antio sas! 🇬🇷

A Very KULE Pride Party

Last week, we hosted a party at our Brooklyn store in celebration of Pride Month. We invited customers and friends of the brand to celebrate together with sips and snacks, rainbow tees and LOVE. If you missed the invite or couldn’t come, you can still shop the KULE Pride collection online! We are donating 20% of the sales from our event and Pride products to Ali Forney Center, the largest organization dedicated to LGBTQ+ homeless youth in the country.

kule pride 2022 party brooklyn kule team
The KULE team dressed in the KULE Pride tee and rainbow colors

The KULE Brooklyn store has a beautiful backyard with tons of greenery and seating, perfect for our Pride Party, where guests gathered for the evening.

We are donating 20% of sales from the evening to @aliforneycenter, the largest organization dedicated to LGBTQ+ homeless youth in the country.

We listened and danced to a curated playlist by Gabe Benzur, sipped on Mezcal Margaritas, and, as you’d expect, dressed for the occasion.

Elizabeth wearing a striped KULE set and a vintage blazer.
Little Hannah wearing the Rainbow Charley tee.
The Modern Pride

The Modern Pride

The Women's Pride Sock

The Women's Pride Sock

The Archie Pride

The Archie Pride

The Men's Pride Sock

The Men's Pride Sock

We gathered with longtime friends…

kule pride party 2022 brooklyn long time friends
Anthony, Jonathan, Jim, Reed

And new friends…

kule pride party 2022 brooklyn new friends
Morgan, Diamond, Kara, Aysleigh, and Clay

And friends who coordinate stripes 🙂

kule pride party 2022 brooklyn nick and arielle
Nick and Arielle

We always welcome furry friends, too.

kule pride party 2022 brooklyn dogs

A very kule evening with stripes, rainbows, smiles, and lots of Pride.

kule pride 2022 friends in backyard

To come to our next event, make sure to be signed up for KULE emails and follow us on Instagram!

kule brooklyn store at pride event 2022
KULE Brooklyn

Photos by Dan Li 📸.

What’s in Your Tote?

The KULE tote is an oversized canvas bag, made in the USA, that has been a staple and favorite of schleppers alike for years. You will always find Nikki carrying one, if not two of these around. As Chloe Fineman said, “It’s very sturdy and a little cheeky and a little funny…It can carry a shocking amount of stuff.” We asked some of our kulest friends to spill their totes for a little insight into just how much baggage they carry 😉. 

Nikki Kule, Founder of KULE, based in NYC

You will never not see me with a giant tote, I am always schlepping samples back and forth from my apartment to the office. It is also handy for groceries, or any other last minute purchases. And, for the summer, it is the best travel beach tote. I basically can’t live with out it.

Lore Laporte, Graphic Designer, Needle Felt Artist, based in Belgium

I use my KULE totes all the time. They are beautiful, are the right size, and can carry a lot of weight. Sometimes I even carry our baby Frankie in it. I almost always take: my vintage Delvaux wallet, my KULE face mask, perfume, cookies, clip-on sunglasses, some wool and needles, an Eddie Wollie newspaper, and something I’m working on. We are remodeling our house, so lately I am always walking around with material samples as well.

Katie Sturino, Founder of Megababe, Author of Body Talk, Host of Boob Sweat Podcast, based in NYC

I never leave the house in summer without my Megababe thigh rescue, a hair clip to put my hair up in case I get hot, my AG1 to keep my immune system booster and my hand sani! I also like to bring a bright lip (this one is Cle de Pea) bc I don’t wear much make up in the summer (I just sweat it off!), and I like to bring a book in case I get stuck waiting somewhere and I don’t want to endlessly scroll!

Marianne Theodorsen, Digital Creator, based in Norway

I always carry a lot of stuff. Wallet, phone, airpods, and things for my lips are always with me. Today, I also have my sunnies and an umbrella due to the highly unpredictable weather.

Mei Tao, Photographer, based in NYC

I use my tote as my purse and carry-all for the day. I put all my essentials in a smaller bag so I can get to it quickly (glasses, hand cream, mask, eye drops, chapstick, keys, wallet, pen, notepad, earbuds and portable phone battery). If I pick up things along the day, I already have a bag to put it all in. No more collecting unnecessary bags! 

Jim Kuerschner, President of KULE, based in Brooklyn and Bellport, NY

I’m always schlepping back and forth between Brooklyn and Bellport, and these totes are the perfect things to carry all my s#!t. My husband and I normally have a tote for our stuff, and a tote for the dogs. And then of course a tote to store my ever-growing collection of totes 🙂

The Take Out Tote

The Take Out Tote

The All Over Striped Tote

The All Over Striped Tote

The Over The Shoulder Tennis Tote

The Over The Shoulder Tennis Tote

The All Over Gingham Tote

The All Over Gingham Tote

The Good Boy Tote

The Good Boy Tote

Shop the entire KULE tote collection and tag us with your own bag spill 🙂.

Behind the Scenes of the Happiest Home Collection 🙂

It was a dream of KULE’s to work with a home brand and what’s better than West Elm? West Elm’s timeless design paired with KULE’s playful and colorful aesthetic is the perfect combination. We’re taking you behind the scenes of the making of the happiest home collection, with product and a full set and team chock full of smiles and stripes. 

kule west elm 2022 behind the scenes
Photographer Mei Tao — who photographs all of KULE’s editorials — shot the campaign. We wanted the imagery to mirror the playfulness and creativity of our fashion shoots.
kule x west elm clothes line with bath mat and towels in striped room
We built a clothes line using the KULE x West Elm Smile Bath Mat, Beach Towels, and added some of our classic KULE product, too.
A welcome mat, with a KULE saying
Square Smile Bath Mat

Square Smile Bath Mat

Have a Nice Day Beach Towel

Have a Nice Day Beach Towel

O HEY Doormat

O HEY Doormat

O HEY Beach Towel

O HEY Beach Towel

O HEY Border Bath Mat

O HEY Border Bath Mat

We’ve added our signature stripes, smiles, and colors to this limited edition KULE x West Elm collection, all in the spirit of bringing more joy to your home (or the beach) 🙂 (Photographed by Mei Tao)
The making of the set — furniture fully wrapped in KULE fabric
Accompanied by a KULE wardrobe of stripes
We took the team and some happy towels to the roof to get the shot (Photographed by Mei Tao)
Towels and bucket hats complimented perfectly by the NYC sky (and apple boxes)
And an extra set of hands
A KULE pillow mountain (Photographed by Mei Tao)
The “pillow mountain” set involved 20+ pillows.
Did you spot the person in the middle? It’s Prarna, from the KULE team!
Have a Nice Day Pillow Cover

Have a Nice Day Pillow Cover

Stripe Round Floor Cushion

Stripe Round Floor Cushion

Reversible Stripe Pillow

Reversible Stripe Pillow

Stripe Round Floor Cushion

Stripe Round Floor Cushion

O HEY Pillow

O HEY Pillow

Nikki Kule in fully striped room, where else? (Photographed by Mei Tao)
For Nikki’s KULE x West Elm “living room” set, the team transformed the space in stripes and wrapped West Elm vases and furniture in KULE fabric to accompany the product.
We wanted to create the kulest version of your home, a happy place where your new KULE x West Elm will live. As we say: classic clothes — and now home accessories — with a happy wink 😉
kule x west elm group photo in stripes and striped room
The Class of KULE x West Elm 2022 🙂. We made sure everyone went home in KULE striped tee.

Shop the full KULE x West Elm collection here and read Nikki’s interview about the collab here.

Meet the Kulest 12 Year Old: Riley Kinnane-Petersen

We first met Riley Kinnane-Petersen in 2016 when she was six years old, on the hunt for the perfect striped tee. Riley’s style is incredible: she mixes pieces like no other. She is also a businessperson, running her accessories brand Gunner & Lux — which she started at just five years old — with her father. We had the pleasure to chat with Riley about her incredible style, how she shops, her brand, and what animal she would be :). Without further ado, Riley!

KULE values confidence, boldness, and not taking dressing too seriously. Riley emulates that perfectly, and we are so excited to chat with her and have her style some KULE Spring/Summer pieces :).

The Rugby stripe shirt is a staple. I actually have a blue and red one from a few seasons ago. I thought a fun leather pencil skirt would make it a bit rock and roll, and I have probably about 25 pairs of KULE socks (they are soooo good) and this cherry pair is my new favorite! They went really well with my green heels from The Label. And of course, I had to add our Gunner & Lux Cherries Necklace!”  – Riley
The Rugby

The Rugby

Mon Cherry Sock

Mon Cherry Sock

Gunner & Lux Rhinestone Cherries Necklace

Gunner & Lux Rhinestone Cherries Necklace

The Label Kitten Heel Pump

The Label Kitten Heel Pump

Theory Leather Pencil Skirt

Theory Leather Pencil Skirt

Riley says her go-to look is a skirt or a dress with a fun top and a jacket over her shoulders. When I asked her if there is anything she’d never wear, she told me she would never say never, but maybe her dad’s cowboy hat. Fashionable and cheeky!

Another look with the Rugby was adding my KULE Trench [ed note: stay tuned for our new one coming soon!]. I have had this trench for about 2 years, and it is a staple in my wardrobe. Everyone should have a trench coat. I added my favorite pair of vintage camo pants, and our new Gunner & Lux Gold Sailboat Necklace for Summer!” – Riley

Riley grew up in Atlanta and says the city’s fashion inspired her to get dressed. Last summer, she moved to Maine and now looks to the ocean, the sailboats, and the lighthouses for inspiration in style and designing jewelry. The move came with a haircut too: she simultaneously chopped it off into a super chic pixie cut!

Photo of sailboats in Maine, taken by Riley’s dad and business partner, John (hi John!)

Riley’s only style ethos is to have fun with fashion. She feels most confident in an outfit that makes her smile, inspired by the joys in life like animals, nature, and bright neon colors. One specific piece in her closet she cherishes most dearly is her favorite vintage Gucci purse, purchased with her own money after she loved the new versions from the Gucci runway. Right now, she happens to be eyeing the Celine T-Bar Leather Pump in brown (same, Riley 🙂). She’s pretty much an expert in mixing classic and playful pieces together.

Riley Gunner & Lux styling KULE
The striped crochet shorts are so amazing! I paired it with an old oxford Thom Browne shirt, my Saint Laurent moto boots, and our Gunner & Lux Blue Bird Necklace to give the outfit a pop of color.” – Riley
The Agnes Shorts

The Agnes Shorts

Thom Browne Cotton Shirt

Thom Browne Cotton Shirt

Gunner & Lux Birdie the Blue Bird Necklace

Gunner & Lux Birdie the Blue Bird Necklace

Saint Laurent Moto Boots

Saint Laurent Moto Boots

The Raven

The Raven

Riley says if she were any animal, she would be a fox because they are sly, quick, and so beautiful. So, of course Gunner & Lux makes a fox necklace, which just so happens to be one of their best sellers 🦊.

Riley has been a friend of KULE for years.
“I was 8 years old, in search of the perfect stripe tee. When I came across KULE, I wasn’t sure if the tees would fit me so I sent a message to Nikki and begged her to make kid’s tees. Guess what! I have a kid’s tee named after me! I have been wearing KULE ever since!” – Riley

Shop Riley’s KULE picks here and her own brand’s gems at Gunner & Lux!