THE INVITATION: At the Peroni party (and the Thompson)

Stylish Peroni guests, including Tanya Kim (far left), Chris Sherman (middle) and Jeremy Freed (second from right). Story by Emily Blake. Photography by Dave Starrett.

As someone who lived in Italy briefly, I’m always thrilled when something I loved there pops into my Canadian life. This summer this came about when an invitation to sip Peroni arrived in my inbox. In the stifling heat wave that cloaked Toronto, there was no way I would skip an opportunity to lounge on the Spoke rooftop with a sweating bottle of birra italiana in my hand. The evening in question arrived, and up I went, wading into the crowd of scenesters, TV producers, and girls with impeccable sundresses.

Despite the exclusivity of the location, there seemed to be almost a block party quality to the evening—in the best way possible. Guests clinked glasses, talked summer cottage plans, and peeled off layers in the heat. The Society’s Amanda Blakely and Martina Stritesky engineered the trend of air kisses from a distance, as everyone came already sporting a fine glow. eTalk’s Tanya Kim held court in one corner, while the doyenne of Rogers, Suzanne, set up camp in the other, wearing a summer dress reminiscent of LV’s fall collection. My pals and I lingered longer than planned—the sun setting on the city was so lovely , the beers so refreshing, the crowd so mellow that we were loathe to carry on. However, the Thompson was calling—one of our travelling company had not yet seen it—so we were bound to the plan.

Upon arrival one thing was clear.

This is the “scene” in Toronto du jour. Girls with perfect faces and virtually nonexistent hemlines abound. Fashion designers, interior designers, executives and models are spotted rapid-fire; their names are equally quickly forgotten in the haze of the crowd. In short succession, we ran into a long-lost friend, the fabulous makeup artist Julia Vallente, and then the talented Canadian actor Kris Holden-Reid. We all used sign language in the din and gawked at the crowd. There was energy here, and excitement, but I found myself longing for Italy, or at the very least the simulated version I had left on the last patio. I ordered a Peroni, and drifted back into the throng.

Below, pics from the Peroni party, all by Dave Starrett.

Read about more stylish fetes in Toronto in The Invitation, and check out party pics and street style in Well Played.

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