And the Winner of Bronx Fashion Week 2014’s Distinguished Gentleman of the Year Is…

Baron Ambrosia at Bronx Fashion Week with his beautiful wife.
Baron Ambrosia at Bronx Fashion Week with his beautiful wife.

Last September was the successful launch of our borough’s first ever Bronx Fashion Week which was held at the Andrew Freedman Home.

On the first night of the event, several Bronx men who were nominated for Bronx Fashion Week’s Distinguished Gentleman Award came on the runway to strut their stuff as they wore their finest threads.  Amongst the cast who ran the catwalk were Baron Ambrosia, New York City Councilman Andy King, and Lenny Caro, president of the Bronx Chamber of Commerce.

So who won?

The incomparable Baron Ambrosia
The incomparable Baron Ambrosia

After careful consideration and much debate, we decided upon Baron Ambrosia for not only being the epitome of style but also all the work he has done so selflessly to promote and highlight our beautiful borough in a positive way.

For so many years, Baron Ambrosia has been representing and spotlighting the underdogs of our epicurean treasures scattered throughout the four corners of The Bronx as our Culinary Ambassador — most of whom are from the four corners of the globe as well.

Baron Ambrosia, who’s real name is Justin Fornal, is always looking for or hosting some zany adventure, whether it’s the Annual Bronx Pipe Smoking Society’s Small Game Dinner where attendees feast upon non-traditional fare such as insects and locally sourced game, having a party in the middle of a river in an underground cavern (at an undisclosed location), working on activating our borough’s abandoned rail lines for recreational purposes, or even taking Anthony Bourdain around The Bronx showing him the “Parts Unknown” that make us so unique.

It was a difficult decision between Baron Ambrosia and Councilman Andy King (who showed up wearing a beautiful suit in our borough’s colors — something I was going to do but glad I didn’t and he pulled it off so well I might add) but ultimately it went to the Emmy winning Baron.

Councilman Andy King showing off his Bronx pride with our borough's colors as part of his outfit.
Councilman Andy King showing off his Bronx pride with our borough’s colors as part of his outfit poses with Baron Ambrosia.

As our host for the 3rd and final evening of Bronx Fashion Week, he opened up the show by talking about his passion for fashion but what struck me the most was what he told us:

“Fashion isn’t what a magazine or an ad dictates to you. Fashion is what  you want it to be. Be unique and follow the beat of your own drums and don’t be afraid to show of your own sense of style.”

It was those words that led us to ultimately decide that Baron Ambrosia truly was Bronx Fashion Week’s Distinguished Gentleman of the Year for 2014 (along with his obvious sense and own brand of style). It represents many aspects of Bronx Fashion Week and about self-expression which we hope to continue to showcase and represent this year and beyond as we continue making this event bigger and better each year.

Emmy winning Baron Ambrosia, Bronx Fashion Week’s Distinguished Gentleman of the Year for 2014 / Image Courtesy The Cooking Channel

Oh and don’t forget, we’re casting for models, designers, make-up artists, hair stylists, and more for Bronx Fashion Week 2015 at The Bronx Museum on Sunday March 22nd.

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Ed García Conde

Ed García Conde is a life-long Bronxite who spends his time documenting the people, places, and things that make the borough a special place in the hopes of dispelling the negative stereotypes associated with The Bronx. His writings are often cited by mainstream media and is often consulted for his expertise on the borough's rich history.