1. Alabama-made candles. This week, we were thrilled to discover Great Bear Wax Co., products made in our own backyard. Founder Jake Carnley combines his passions for local goods and the natural world through producing small batches of mustache wax, beard conditioning oil, and unisex candles from the wax of Birmingham, Sylacauga, and Opelika bees. His hand-poured candles come in three scents, Natural, Lavendar, and Jasmine/Patchouli, and can even be delivered in person in the Opelika area.
2. Donald Link’s new cookbook. The Louisiana chef in the kitchen of some of our favorite Crescent City eats (Pêche, Herbsaint) releases his second cookbook on Tuesday. In Down South: Bourbon, Pork, Gulf Shrimp & Second Helpings of Everything, Donald looks beyond just Louisiana and dives into Gulf seafood markets, Memphis barbecue, and the fresh produce of the region. In addition to all the tasty recipes, the book features plenty of local color–look for interviews with the Jim ‘N Nick’s BBQ pitmaster, a Louisiana goat farmer, and Julia Reed, writer and hostess extraordinaire.
3. President Woodrow Wilson’s home reopens in Columbia. After a decade-long 3.6 million renovation, the 28th president’s former residence opened back up as a museum last week. Now visitors can see where Woodrow Wilson spent his teen years after his family moved to South Carolina’s capital during Reconstruction. Restored to its 1871 charm, the home features virtual tours of post-Civil War Columbia, period vignettes, and a extensive garden with magnolias planted by Woodrow’s mother.
4. D.C.’s new restaurant. Dreamed up by Ripple’s owner Roger Marmet and chef Marjorie Meek-Bradley, Roofers Union has a lot to be proud of. The industrial chic eatery has three beautifully designed floors, boasting views of its Adams Morgan neighborhood and beyond. Their sophisticated takes on kid favorites will make you glad you’re a grown-up ordering andouille corn dogs and dirty water dogs on a potato roll. Rounding out the rest of the menu are beer-steamed mussels, olive oil-poached salmon, and fried chicken thigh sandwich with sriracha honey.
5. Lake Street Dive’s album. Though the band met as students at the New England Conservatory in Boston, we like to think that the South’s partly to thank for their soulful, jazzy sound. Lead singer Rachael Price hails from Hendersonville, Tennessee, and it’s her commanding voice that leads the group through their set of catchy and clever songs. This week, Lake Street Dive plays sold-out shows in Asheville, Atlanta, and Nashville, but catch them live at Old Settler’s Music Festival in Texas in April and Bonnaroo in June. Until then, watch the song that had us hooked months ago (the title track off the album) and prepare to hit repeat.