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Following Dr. Romanelli on Instagram, I’ve been curious as to what this whole “The Pancake Epidemic” is all about, that he’s been geo-tagging in all his posts. Is it a restaurant? Title for a new Guns N’ Roses album? Viral contagion spreading in the Midwest?

It’s actually a “space,” I guess you can call it… a hub… to attract, foster, and activate creative discussion and synergies amongst the tastemaking elite. Have you ever heard of the Santa Fe Institute? The thinktank where brains like author Cormac McCarthy rub shoulders with Al Gore and the world’s foremost scientists? This reminds me of that, but for the cool kids that incite tomorrow’s trends.

For example, I’m here today and so many peers and friends just happen to be situated around the room. Luis and Brandon from Hypebeast are here. Photographer Willie T is here.

Levi Maestro is here.

Eddie Cruz of UNDFTD is here. Russ (SSUR) was here. Dre from The Foundation was here. Keith (Huf) was here. Fraser was here. You get the point.

The Pancake Epidemic is an arm of Romanelli’s marketing agency, Street Virus, whose office is still based in the far wing:

The Pancake Epidemic is also a stable of Romanelli’s sub-projects and outside endeavors. Like Blank You Very Much, which he’s built with Jeff:

The website is a platform for outside graphic designers and artists to infuse their workmanship into brand identities, win the competition, and see their art printed on limited t-shirts. Past brand participants have included Huf, Krink, and Dee and Ricky’s:

Another room, labeled Dr. Chen’s, is dedicated to the storied relationship between Edison Chen and Dr. Romanelli. Edison also shows the latest CLOT range from this room, as well as specific collaborations he’s worked on with Romanelli, and other exclusive goods that the actor and musician have had a hand in.

Like the Google offices, but everyone has better shoes.

Raul, an established cobbler by trade, has partnered up with Romanelli on El Cazado Place. The concept here is to “customize” Converse sneakers in a deeper sense.. to actually deconstruct, blow apart, and then piece back together the sneakers with premium-grade materials.

So for instance, Converse flows the guys boxes of these sneakers.

Particular tastemakers are invited and asked to run their own personalized flips on the sneakers, literally built from the ground up.

In the corner of The Pancake Epidemic is a Handsome Coffee Roasters outpost. Of course, the city’s coolest coffeemakers have set up shop inside the city’s coolest offices.

I’m sure you’re wondering why this idea is even named The Pancake Epidemic to begin with.

It may have something to do with the fact that they are located directly above an IHOP:


A David Ellis installation. Just to offset the bacon.

The corner suite is reserved purely for conversation, conceptualizing, and creating. Phones are discouraged, building is encouraged.

For relaxing times, make it Suntory time

Oh what’s that? Fender just decided to drop this stuff off yesterday? ACabronita Telecaster, 50s P bass, and Excelsior amp that came directly from the new Band Of Horses video shoot? Sure, why not.

IntroducingDarren Romanelli and The Pancake Epidemic.

by bobbyhundreds

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