The sun hadn’t yet set when guests started pouring into the Boom Boom Room for last night’s launch of D’usse, a new cognac that was blended by a cellar master at a 200-year-old French institute, the Chateau de Cognac. There aren’t too many chances to see the meatpacking district’s reigning late-night party locale in daylight, and the extra visibility exposes tiny flaws in the usually squeaky-clean boîte — a small knick on a railing, a smudge on a table. They were, perhaps, scars from the Met Ball after party two nights earlier.
Jay-Z, known fan of Anna Wintour, skipped all the Met Ball festivities Monday. Beyoncé was at the late-night bash, in Givenchy, so perhaps her husband had to babysit their three-month-old daughter. But he showed up to the Top of the Standard Wednesday early enough to catch a bit of dusk over the Hudson River. In a blazer, jeans, and enormous gold chain, Jay-Z grabbed a glass of cognac and sauntered over to a corner of the room, where a TV had been set up.
We walked up to him and he greeted us with a grin and a handshake.
“Who you going for,” we said, pointing at the NBA playoff game. “The Heat or the Knicks?”
Jay-Z laughed — he’s a minority owner of the Brooklyn Nets. If the Knicks lose, their season would be over, and this would be their last game as the only New York City NBA team.
“I’m going for the Knicks,” he said.
We asked about the cognac.
“I just got here,” he said. “Let me, you know, chill.”
He went back to watching the game, and was eventually surrounded by a crush of people, all holding snifters, rubbernecking to catch a glimpse of Jay-Z (or perhaps the game). It also appears that Jake Gyllenhaal has a thick beard, and he’s real buddy-buddy with Jay — they spent a good chunk of the night downing cognac and laughing.
Eventually, the dozens of bottles of D’usse lining the walls behind the bar diminished in number, and Pharrell, the producer, rapper, and occasional fashion designer, showed up. The girl he was sorta-maybe-with wore a shirt that said, “Wealth is of the heart and the mind, not the pocket.”
At some point in the night, the Knicks lost to the Heat, 104-96.