Lunch at Michael’s: Atoosa Rubenstein Using Up That Hearst Expense Account

lunch_at_michaels_logo.jpgThe mood was downright celebratory among the movers and shakers that filled the busting dining room. An early start to the holiday season? Perhaps, but we couldn’t help but notice the wine was really flowing. The always affable barkeep Dale told us there was also a run on Kir Royales. Today’s toastmaster general and former Time Inc. titan Walter Isaacson raised his glass with companions Time Inc.’s editor-in-chief John Huey and Time‘s managing editor Richard Stengel (We’re guessing all the hoopla was in anticipation of Isaacson’s latest tome on Albert Einstein). Things will, undoubtedly, get even more festive this evening when 150 A-listers are expected to celebrate the release of Tony Bennett‘s latest, Duets An American Classic. Cheers!

Here’s the rundown on those that dined and dished:

Table 1: Let’s get the party started: Simon & Schuster editrix Alice Mayhew and David Rosenthal presided over a jubilant table. There were more toasts all around when Isaacson (glass in hand — he was drinking white) stopped by with Huey (sipping red) and Stengel to spread more good cheer.

2. The Post‘s Keith Kelly with Money‘s managing editor Eric Schurenberg and the financial guide’s flack.

3. ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong and longtime pal and former colleague Dorothy Kalins, Newsweek‘s executive editor. We’re always thrilled when Joe stops by to chat. Today he told us lunch was a “reunion” of sorts as he and his accomplished companion worked together on some “start-ups” (including Saveur) in “the nineties.”

4. Power blondes Terry Kramer, NBC’s Felicia Taylor (looking fab in black leather) and a late arriving guest.

5. Messieurs Isaacson, Huey and Stengel.

6. Gerry Byrne.

7. Former Miss America — and still stunning Phyllis George — (loved those hip stiletto boots!) and two style savvy pals. These gal pals were clearly enjoying themselves. We spotted lots of gifts being exchanged and there were laughs all around.

8. New York Social Diary’s David Patrick Columbia and a striking red headed companion. Pamela Keogh stopped by the table to say ‘Hello.’ (The best selling author looked very Audrey Hepburn — the subject of her best selling tome Audrey Style.)

9. Seventeen‘s soon-to-be-departed editor-in-chief Atoosa Rubenstein and agent Luke Janklow. On her way out this afternoon, the Rubenstein asked Keith Kelly “What are you doing at the bar?” but didn’t hang around for an answer. We’ll fill you in, girlfriend: He was chatting with today’s lunchtime chronicler, author Diane Clehane. We love when folks like Keith and Men’s Health editor Dave Zinczenko (who introduced us to Today show talent booker Marc Victor) stop by for a chat. Thanks, too, Dave, for the sneak preview of the Keith Urban interview. Nice score!

10. At the “new” two-top: the very fashionable Carolina Zapf, founder and chief designer of haute kids line Baby CZ, and guest.

11. Rick Friedberg.

12. Larry Ashmeen and guest.

14. Gossip goddess Cindy Adams (we were coveting her furry Fendi bag all through lunch) and Richard Plepler.

15. The dazzling fall flower arrangement blocked our view.

16. Producer Joan Gelman and sons CBS news producer Josh Gelman and Designer Gregg Gelman. (Thanks for letting us know, Joan.)

17. Jay Kriegel and, we’re told, Hillary Clinton‘s press secretary.

18. Celebrity biographer Ed Klein and editor extraodinaire Ed Kosner.

19. We couldn’t see.

20. Bonnie Timmerman.

21. Quest‘s Chris Meigher looking dapper in navy pinstripes.

22. Public relations guru Steve Rubenstein and a scribe — getting the real story, no doubt.

23. Peter Price and guest.

24. Author Amanda Vall (“Jesse Kornbluth told me to introduce myself. My new book on Jerome Robbins comes out next week”), PR pitchwoman Victoria King and the Bel Air Hotel’s Carlos Lopez. We love when friends we haven’t met stop by the bar (our usual perch) to make our acquaintance. Thanks, Jesse. And to those of you who want to read more about yourself in this column (you know who you are!) stop by and say, “Hello.” We love the company.

25. We couldn’t see.

26. Ms. Keogh, who was wearing a suit she says her mother got at Saks in 1969(!). With friend James Curtis, a lawyer, who Keogh says is “one of the best dressed men I know”.

27. Jim Mitchell and a bevy of beauties.

28. Jordan Ringel and guest.

29. Messeurs Zinczenko and Victor.

30. Media Industry Newsletter’s Steve Cohn and guest.

Please send any and all correct spellings, additions and what have you to DianeClehane AT mediabistro DOT com, and Lunch AT mediabistro DOT com.

Map of Michael’s