Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Wedding registry items you will love

With NYC Fashion Week coming in a few short weeks, I'm in the mood to go shopping. More importantly, I'm thinking about items to shop for as you put your registry together.  These will be coming to a store near you soon – so consider this your registry preview.

If you are a wine lover, you’ll love my newest find the perfect “In-Bottle Decanter”. Created by Soiree, this wine aerator is designed to fit any bottle of wine. It is proven to enhance the bouquet, body flavor and finish of wines. By providing a chamber for wine to swirl and aerate, the Soiree enlivens wine and because it fits into the bottleneck – no drips. Just pour directly from your favorite bottle providing each and every glass you pour, optimum quality. Because of the great price point (about $25 dollars) these are great and useful gifts for your guest gifts. I will say that for my Wine-Brides, they can be personalized (for an additional fee) and will be something that everyone can use. You can find them at Whole Foods, Target.com, Kroger, fine wine retailers and of course their site. Just think of it as “good to the last drop”.

Cuisinart has always been a leader in home products and this year they really stepped up. For the power Enthusiast, they have the Cuisinart PowerEdge 1000 Watt Blender. This is truly their most powerful to date and perfect if you are looking for a blender that does it all. I'm sayin' Margaritas all year.
For the Barbecue Lover – even if you live in a NYC apartment. The Cuisinart Griddler Grill Centro (GC-17) offers home cooks a grill that can handle it all. The unit has a non-stick die-cast top that converts from a grill to a griddle which enables you to prepare a virtually limitless variety of food. The bottom Tier is equipped with a 10pc stainless steel skewer set so you can make those yummy kebabs, sausages or hot dogs.

A brand new brewing system (SS-700), is an 80 oz. single serve brewing system, that is perfect for that morning cup of java or your first dinner party. Using Keurig K-Cup portion packs offers over 200 varieties of tea and coffee. I bet Starbucks can’t offer you that many options.

Finally and truly my personal favorite the kettle for the Techno Tea Lover in all of us. The PerfecTemp Cordless Programmable Kettle (CPK-17) provides the perfectly brewed cup of tea. It uses one-touch controls and is so smart that it can be preset to: Delicate, Green, White, Oolong, French Press and Black. With 1500 watts of power it heats up fast, auto shutoff and offers boil-dry protection. Try the Love tea and enjoy the moment.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Groomsmen gifts the won't throw away

Grooms are you having trouble trying to figure out a unique gift to give your groomsmen?  I know they don’t need another beer mug or money clip.  How about some great gifts for your tech-savvy groomsmen?   

This isn’t the typical gift one initially thinks of, but they are definitely fun, useful and a keeper. Everyone nowadays needs a USB flash drive. Why not give one that features a college, team or racing team?  These drives come with data encryption, are waterproof, “green” and lots of designer styles.  With capacity from 2GB to 8 GB, you will really appreciate the price point and they will appreciate the cool gift.
MLB, NASCAR, Collegiate, and of course the NFL
You can parchase in from their site or places like Best Buy, J&R, Office Max, Amazon.com and many others.

Do you have a friend that is a ‘gamer’?  Nyko is the #1 gaming accessory company, and has a lineup of products for every console under the sun.   Some of the newest items for this holiday season include:
Raven PS3 controllers - $34.99 - Full featured, they come in both standard and swapped Xbox-style joystick layouts
Wand+  -$39.99 - Built in Motion Plus, a full $20 cheaper than Nintendo's controller plus dongle, and it's more compact
Charge Stations for PlayStation Move - $19.99 for duo or $29.99 for quad - keep your Move controllers charged and ready

Finally and depending on just how much you REALLY like your boys, there is the ultimate gift a snazzy iPad, iPod, iWhatever covers.  They can be fun, fancy, funky or matchy-matchy to your wedding colors.  No matter which you choose, I’m sure they will love it.

MusicSkins: From The Beatles, to the Sex Pistols, via Kiss, past The Grateful Dead, right through to Rihanna and Linkin Park there covers will remind them of good times and the great tunes you both love.

Belkin has long been known for cutting-edge quality products.  They have iPad covers from leather, ones with ‘see through protection’ and ones you can grip it and go.

If you happen to have an ‘eco-friendly’ wedding yet your friends are tech-heads, you can still give them a great cover from ColcaSac. 

Vers is beyond beautiful.  These versatile wood cases are stylish and for every case they create, they plant 100 trees through the Arbor Day Foundation.  LOVE THEM!!

If you are a fan of etsy, blytheking has some of the coolest, strangest, wildest and most unique cases I’ve ever seen.  All made of Vintage Fabrics, I’m seeing a Mad Men theme here….

Of course if you want to spend – really spend here are some high-end cases for you to choose from.

Luxurious Louis Vuitton case, a snip at around $360 – available Jan 2011; Gucci iPad case ($230) (I heard a new fabric covered one will be available Oct 2010); Burberry, $475, available at Burberry boutiques; Oscar de la Renta, $290-$390; Salvatore Ferragamo; $290-$390; Trussardi, $300, available at Trussardi

Oh, so many options, so little time. No matter what you do choose, make sure it’s something your groomsmen can use. They will really appreciate it and remember your happy day every time they use it.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

A bit of Tuscany close to home: Wölffer Estate Vineyard

The Christian Wölffer Estate Vineyard, is a 55 acre winery located in Sagaponack, L.I., in the heart of the Hamptons. Upon your arrival, you’ll be immediately transported to a Tuscan Village. Founded in 1988, by Christian Wölffer has become one of the most sought out locations for events, especially weddings.
Upon entry, the floor to ceiling french doors, open onto a stone terrace bordered with hydrangeas, that kiss the Tuscan...I mean South Hampton sky. The use of classic fall colors like oranges, yellows and burgundy are perfect especially as we enter fall.  Then again, so are deep plum, blue and every imaginable green will work year round.  Let your color choice be, the splashes of color against the sun-kissed exterior of Wölffer, or the classic backdrop of a blue sky and ready-to-harvest vines. Truly, less is more. 

Even though the winery is 12,000 square-feet and over 55 acres of vineyards, it has a very intimate feel and extremely inviting. You can host up to 175 guests for dinner and dancing on the terrace or the adjacent tasting room. While they do charge a venue fee, you will receive a 15% discount on all wines that you enjoy at your wedding. This discount might be the perfect 'gift' for your guests.  Just a note, because of the town ordinances, all music MUST END at 11:00pm. They can also provide Kosher menus for those that request a Kosher wedding.

I always thought that if I got married in a vineyard, it would have to be in Napa.  However, did you know, you CAN NOT get married among the vines in Napa? Honest, it's against the law there (but I hear they're working on it!). Here at Wölffer, you don't have to worry about that.  They have a cute gazebo surround by acres and acres of fragrant vines if that's your choice. What a beautiful picture that will be.
Go for a visit year-round. Enjoy some wine and selection of artisanal cheeses. Or guys, if you’re thinking of proposing, why not celebrate harvest at their party (complete with grape picking and stomping then a lunch) and let dessert be her ring atop a piece of cake, or floating in her glass of Wölffer sparkling wine?  Why not enjoy Twilight Thursday, which offers live jazz, complimentary cheese and wine by the glass as you watch the sun set. Can you say ROMANCE?

Make this the "Tuscan Wedding" you've always wanted only a lot closer to home.

This is a vineyard that has it all.
For up to date information about Wölffer Estate Vineyard, please visit www.wolffer.com or call 631.537.5106
Wölffer Estate Vineyard, 139 Sagg Road, Sagaponack, LI. NY 11962
Wölffer Wine Stand, 3312 Montauk Highway Sagaponack, LI. NY 11962

Photos: 1, 3 and 4 - Wolffer
Photo 2 - Lisa M. Barr

Monday, August 23, 2010

Bed bugs and honeymoons dont' mix

It seems that the outbreak of bedbugs is so intense that you can’t even go to the movie theater without the possibility of being attached by them.

When you’re traveling there are a few things you can do to try to protect yourself.

  • Call your intended hotel and ask if they use bed bug proof bedding encasements. (Preferably made of comfortable 100% micro-polyether and not noisy vinyl material!). They may or may not tell you the truth, but I think that more and more are investing in preventative measures. Spending a few pennies now vs. paying with consumer complaints later.
  • Just because it’s a 5-star hotel, don’t think it couldn’t happen there. It has. Look up your hotel’s history of reported bed bug cases. This can be found online at sites such as bedbugregistry.com
  • It seems that bedbugs thrive in tropical, humid climates. That could be why NYC has seen the rise in them this summer. Take special care if you are traveling to a tropic island.
  • Pack your cloths in giant Ziploc bags. At the very least, invest in luggage liners. They act as insulation protection and pay prevent them from coming into your luggage.
  • Bring along a small flashlight. Why, this way you can inspect the bed board, mattress edges, chairs, drawers…just give the entire room a once-over. Better you spot them early, change rooms than wake up with bites all over your body. While bedbugs don’t carry disease, they are pretty uncomfortable. Indications of bed bug infestations include dark fecal spots, dried blood spots, eggs, and of course bed bugs – dead or alive.
  • Don’t put your luggage on the bed, chair or any furniture made of cloth. Instead, use the luggage rack that should be provided in your hotel room. Ask for two if you have to.
  • When you are packing to come home, put all your dirty clothes in a laundry bag (see that giant zip lock will come in handy), especially your intimates. Shake out your clothes and shoes before you pack them.
  • While this is an uncomfortable subject, better a little discomfort now and a happy honeymoon than bed-bug-blotched pictures.
For more information check out bedbugregistry.com for domestic hotel reports and trip advisor for both domestic and international reports.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Weddings made easy with IconicWeddings.com

Fall makes me want to spread my wings and fly to new destinations, visit places I’ve dreamed of and of course have someone do all the work for me so all I have to do is arrive.  I’m sure if you’re planning your wedding you wish for the same thing.  Let’s face it, it’s not easy planning a wedding (local or destination) and then you have to plan your honeymoon too?  Don’t pull out your hair, Iconic Weddings has heard your stressed out cry and has come to your rescue.
IconicWeddings.com is a site that is truly a one-stop shop for couples looking for a destination wedding or honeymoon.  A division of RockResorts, this is their latest venture in the hopes of making your planning a breeze.  With destinations from Vail Colorado, to St. Lucia, their site offers you a click and go ability.
Here’s what you do.  Say you want to have your wedding near mountains, and want to offer horseback ridding, a spa and golf experience, and perhaps dog sledding near a beach but you’re on a limited budget. Strange right?  Hey, it’s your wedding so have it your way.
As you build your dream wedding, Iconic Weddings.com will customize your search according to your needs and wants at the properties within the RockResorts and Vail Resorts family. This eliminates you having to do individual searches.  You can compare them side-by-side and wait it gets better.  Once you decide your choices, you can plug in a bit of information and a REAL PERSON, a RockResorts representative will call you back.  No voice automation here.
Are you ready – it gets even better.  For every Iconic Wedding that you plan, your honeymoon is free at the Vail Resorts Hospitality or RockResorts destination of your dreams.  So get married in the mountains and honeymoon by the sea.  Did I hear you say WOW!?  They also have real weddings from couples –read all about their experiences.  Honestly, I don’t think any other destination site has that. 
Great for bachelor(ette) weekends, anniversaries, vow renewals and green weddings.  An easier way to plan destination wedding/honeymoons is the wave of the future and Iconic Weddings is paving the way.  Making it easier for couples to have the wedding they always wanted and the honeymoon they dreamed of.  Simply IconicWeddings.com ROCKS!
For more information about IconicWeddings.com visit them at: www.iconicweddings.com
For more information on this brand wide initiative of Vail Resorts (RockResorts and Vail Resorts Hospitality are both subsidiaries), visit them at:www.vailresorts.com and www.snow.com

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Wine Wednesday: Champagne anyone?

Moet & Chandon
Moet and Chandon
It’s finally summer and it’s all about long and leisurely, sun-soaked brunches and to start the evening early with laughs and refreshing summer cocktails. Be a perfectly welcoming hostess, or the ideal guest, by popping open a bottle of Moët & Chandon champagne to make refreshingly delicious summer brunch cocktails using locally grown ingredients.

Cocktail expert, Kim Haasarud of Liquid Architecture, explains the appeal of fresh fruits and herbs during the warm summer months. “Fresh is best when it comes to summertime cocktails. There is a world of fresh ingredients at one’s fingertips anywhere around the country, especially in the warm summer months.”
So grab a bottle of Moët & Chandon and muddle nectarines or blood oranges, creating delicious Bellini’s and Mimosas. If you pour on the wild-side, pick up sorbet and herbs at your local farmer’s market to make the ideal poolside refreshers. No matter what fresh ingredients you have on hand, Moët & Chandon’s sophisticated and cooling cocktails are sure to enchant all mid-summer mornings and nights.
All of the cocktails created and thanks given to, Kim Haasarud of Liquid Architecture. Thx Kim!
Orange Sunrise  By Kim Haasarud, Liquid Architecture
Blooming Fizz
Blooming Fizz
1 oz St. Germain Elderflower liqueur
Moët & Chandon Impérial champagne
Edible flowers, for garnish

Combine the lemon sorbet, softened, in a cocktail shaker with the elderflower liqueur. Add ice and shake vigorously. Strain into a champagne flute and top with Moët & Chandon Impérial. Top with edible flowers, for garnish.
Cherry  Chiller
Raspberry Sorbet Bellini
Raspberry Sorbet Bellini
1 scoop raspberry sorbet, softened
0.5 oz Belvedere Black Raspberry vodka
Moët & Chandon Rosé Impérial champagne

Combine the raspberry sorbet and vodka in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake vigorously and strain into an empty champagne flute. Top off of with Moët & Chandon Rosé Impérial champagne.
Orange  Sunrise
Orange Sunrise
Orange Sunrise
1 scoop of guava sorbet (or 2 oz guava nectar), or in a pinch use orange sherbet and add a little guava nectar to it.
0.5 oz orange liqueur
Moët & Chandon (Impérial or Rosé ) champagne

Combine the sorbet (and/or nectar) with the orange liqueur in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake vigorously and strain into a champagne flute. Top with Moët & Chandon champagne.
Cherry Chiller
Cherry Chiller
Cherry Chiller
2 basil leaves, sliced into thin strips
3 pitted bing cherries, plus 2 extra for garnish
0.5 oz gin (i.e. Plymouth)
0.5 oz simple syrup
0.5 oz lime juice
3-4 oz Moët & Chandon Rose Imperial

Combine the basil, cherries, lime juice, gin and simple syrup in a mixing glass. Muddle. Top with ice and shake vigorously. Pour contents into a highball glass and top with Moët & Chandon Rose Imperial.
As always I want you to enjoy these yummy cocktails, but do drink responsibly.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Clear skin at any age by Dr. Neil Sadick

Something that can cause a bride to be stressed out even more on her wedding day is, ‘clear skin’. There are some people who will go to extremes, but there is a lot you can do, to help clear your skin and prevent additional ‘aging, hyper-pigmentation and acne’. While I’m not opposed to full-on face lifts/surgeries (if that's your thing), why not just, ‘refresh’ and not deal with extensive down-time? Yes, this goes for you too guys - I know you want to look good!!

Between the ages of 25 and 55, there is a lot you can do to keep looking natural, while delaying the appearance of aging. In the war against aging, it’s important to find a physician who respects a natural look. Neil Sadick, MD, FAAD, FAACS, FACP, FACPh, is one of the most renowned dermatologists and researchers, and his multiple discoveries have strongly influenced and transformed the future of dermatology.

Here are a few tips for brides/grooms in their 20s who may battle acne, sun damage + unwanted hair...
- VI Peel: Natural peel, with little to no down time. Great for mild acne, facial discoloration (dark/light spots) and fine lines around eyes and cheeks
- Omnilux: Red and blue light emitted diodes (LED), this is a low level light energy system that is intended for acne treatment, skin texture enhancement and acne scar improvement
- Pro-Wave Hair Removal: System for unwanted hair removal. It’s painless, effective and works on all skin types. This may require a few treatment sessions with permanent hair reduction and depend on just how much hair there is.

Are you in your 30's and may face unwanted cellulite, appearance of leg veins, and the beginning signs of wrinkles, try…
- SmoothShapes: Combines light energy and massage to reduce the appearance of cellulite or bumpiness on the outer thighs, buttocks and legs
- IPL: Light source improve the skin discoloration such a redness, brownish discoloration and yellowish tinge that is frequently seen in some women in your mid-30's
- Laser Genesis: Laser based platform that offers skin tightening without any surgery. It takes a few treatments to see the results so if you decide to do this, give yourself at least 2 months pre-wedding
- Foam Sclerotherapy: State of the art treatment for leg veins that are mostly bluish to green in color. Dr. Sadiak says that the veins that get treated disappear forever.

If you are in your 40’s and wish to drop pounds, lose sunspots and diminish wrinkles…
- Fraxel Dual: Laser treatment for wrinkles and fine lines on face, neck and upper chest. This is one of the most commonly used treatments for skin rejuvenation with minimal to no down time.
- Smartlipo: Laser assisted liposuction or fat reduction. It is an invasive procedure that utilizes a laser fiber to melt the fat by heating. The procedure also provides skin tightening as part of healing from the procedure
- Pearl: Laser-resurfacing system that is intended to remove brown spots, reduce pore size and smooth fine lines from a facial skin that is otherwise in good health. 2-3 day downtime
- Thermage: Radiofrequency device that helps to tighten the skin with minimal to no downtime. It is painless and in most cases requires only one treatment. It helps to improve skin laxity in areas such as lower abdomen, underarms, neck and of course face.

I would recommend this for the Moms (and yes dad’s too) in their 50’s who want to keep skin tight and smooth and fat to a minimum with no surgery…
- Sculptra: Injectable substance used for facial volume restoration. It is widely used to restore the facial architecture, cheekbone enhancement and to smooth out the facial hollowness that happens with aging
- Radiesse: Calcium-based filler used to smooth out the smile lines and area around the mouth for a better-contoured chin structure. Radiasse can also be used to restore cheek volume loss
- REfirm: Laser platform that helps to restore the skin elasticity. It’s used to tighten the skin especially when surgery may not be an option
- Zeltiq: Non-invasive, fat reduction device that helps to reduce the unwanted fat in flanks and lower abdomen by selectively cooling it. It takes approx 45 mins for treatment and 4-5 sessions are required over a period of time.

In full disclosure, I have seen Dr. Sadick myself to help with my own adult acne and hyper-pigmentation. I’ve had a great Medical Cleanse Facial and floated down Park Avenue….oh yea, my skin looked amazing! I know the list of services may be confusing, but he will do a face/skin/body analysis and recommend the best course of action for you. Of course, Dr. Sadick will also tell you that a healthy diet and exercise will only add to your beautiful self. I would highly recommend you jump start your skin care with him.

For more information about Dr. Sadick and spa services:
Dr. Neil Sadick – 911 Park Avenue NYC 212.772.7242 or his office at 833 Northern Blvd., Suite 130, Great Neck, NY 516.482.8040

Friday, August 13, 2010

Michael Andrews Bespoke custom fashion for the groom

Oh, there is nothing like a man in a suit – his own that is. Now, I realize that some of you grooms don’t have a need to wear a suit (or tux) for work, but I highly recommend that you make your wedding the one day you invest in your appearance. After all, don’t you want your guests to tell you how handsome you look?

Known for creating some of the freshest suits on the market, each piece of Michael Andrews Bespoke clothing is custom made and personalized to a client’s fashion needs and lifestyle. While garments can be ordered in virtually any style, the shop is best known for its contemporary, slim fit suits featuring designer detailing like vibrant colored linings, contrast stitching, working sleeve buttonholes and labels personally embroidered with a client’s own name.

This is not your average men’s store. Honestly, once you enter, you may not want to leave. There is an ornate 12-foot oak bar acquired from a pub in Massachusetts, vintage chairs covered in genuine suiting fabrics, and to complete the space a flat-screen TV so you can relax and never have to miss a big game. Sweet! What, this isn’t reason enough? Michael Andrews has already been touted as “the” tailor-made tuxedo every man deserves on his wedding day in Inside Weddings, Modern Bride, Elegant Bride, St. Louis Bride and on WE tv’s “My Fair Wedding.” 

You should visit this brand new 4,200 square foot design studio. They are offering made-to-measure suits in three levels: Sterling Collection (starting at $895), Platinum Collection (starting at $1,195), and Signature Collection (starting at $2,695). All suits are fully canvassed and feature top-quality trims such as genuine horn buttons and nickel zippers.

In addition to over 5,000 fabrics to choose from, Michael Andrews Bespoke also offers made-to-measure shoes and belts and ready-to-wear ties, cuff-links, socks and other accessories to help clients complete your look. Trust me, it’s worth the investment.

What are you waiting for?

Michael Andrews Bespoke - By appointment only
2 Great Jones Alley (off Great Jones St. bet Broadway & Lafayette), NYC 212.677.1755
Wed-Fri 2-9pm; Sat 12-5pm; Sun 12-7pm

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

SKYY Vokda creates icy cold cocktails for your haute wedding events

Skyy Vodka - flavors for everyone
Statistics show that each year 90% of American families attend at least one BBQ party during the summer. That is a heck of a lot of hamburgers, hot dogs and ribs you are going to need to wash down. This year, instead of defaulting to the old standby beer, add a splash of color and a burst of fresh fruity taste to your BBQ libations with some refreshing and easy to make cocktails.

If you are planning an outdoor wedding related event during these last few weeks of summer, the SKYY Vodka's award winning line of all natural SKYY Infusions can easily become the centerpiece of your party.  Then again, I'm loving these cocktails year round.

If you want to have your guests be more interactive (think a great ice-breaker…no pun intended) is with a do-it-yourself cocktail bar featuring the SKYY Starlight, a fun, adult rendition of the icy cool snow cone. Your guests may also want to beat the heat with something that’s equally as bold and refreshing like the favorably tart SKYY Summer Palmer - an jazzy update to the classic Arnold Palmer - or relax before dinner with a more subtle cocktail like the Passion-Politan or the Sweet Lyee Ginger, which features the recently launched SKYY Infusions Ginger. No matter what the occasion, these summer offerings will both impress and satisfy anything one may crave on a hot summer day.
No matter which ones you choose, have your cocktail reflect you, as a couple and have fun.

SKYY Vodka - skyy starlight
SKYY Starlight
SKYY Starlight
Created by Adam Wilson, Beretta, San Francisco
1.5 oz. SKYY Vodka
0.75 oz. Fresh Lime Juice
0.50 oz. Simple Syrup
1 oz. Hibiscus or Cranberry Juice
Fresh Mint
Muddle all ingredients except hibiscus/cranberry juice in bottom of tall rocks glass. Add half a glass of crushed ice and stir well. Add more crushed ice until tightly packed just over the rim of the glass, and pour hibiscus or cranberry juice over top. Garnish with sprig of fresh mint and serve with a straw.
SKYY Vodka - sweet-lyee Ginger
Sweet-Lyee Ginger
Sweet-Lyee Ginger
Created by Alex Straus, Suite 700 at the Hotel Shangri-La, Los Angeles
1.5 oz. SKYY Infusions Ginger
1.5 oz. Lychee Puree*
4 Mint Leaves
0.5 oz. Fresh Lime Juice
Muddle 3 of the mint leaves in a cocktail shaker to release oils. Add the rest of the ingredients to the shaker with ice and shake vigorously. Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with remaining large mint leaf.
*To make lychee puree, purchase a can of lychees in light syrup and blend well.
SKYY Vodka - passion-politan
Created by Alex Straus, Suite 700 at the Hotel Shangri-La, Los Angeles
2 oz. SKYY Infusions Passion Fruit
0.75 oz. Orange Liqueur
0.75 oz. Rose Syrup (such as Monin)
0.5 oz Lime Juice
Rosé Champagne or Rosé Sparkling Wine
1 Rose Petal

Combine all ingredients except champagne/sparkling wine in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake vigorously and add sparkling wine, stir and strain into a martini glass. Float the rose petal on top of the cocktail for garnish.
SKYY Vodka - Skyy Summer Palmer
SKYY Summer Palmer
SKYY Summer Palmer
Kathy Casey, Kathy Casey Food Studios
1.5 oz. SKYY Infusions Citrus
0.25 oz. Triple Sec
1 oz. Sweetened Iced Tea
0.5 oz. Fresh Lemon Juice
Combine SKYY Infusions Citrus, triple sec, unsweetened iced tea, lemon juice and ice into a cocktail shaker. Shake vigorously and strain into a martini glass with sugar rim as garnish.
No matter which you choose, your guests will love them. So here's wishing you a great summer filled with happy times, great memories and I send you a virtual toast to your happiness.

As always I want you to enjoy these yummy cocktails, but do drink responsibly.

Monday, August 9, 2010

August 2010 wedding trends, trunkshows and ideas

While it's not quite there yet, I can't believe how fast this year is zooming by.  It's almost...almost September and believe me, it's going to be a fun fall season.  Lots of travel, lots of fun events which means lots to share. I’m actually using today to branch out to my other favorite continent - England for an event that I think you'll love. Are you ready?

NYC Couples:

How about a cruise on the Hudson, but a special one: this time, it's not just water surrounding you, it is a lot of whisky awaiting on this boat on Thursday, August 26th, 2010! Enter "brandy" as a discount code and get 15% off your ticket: http://www.whiskyguild.com/tasting_new_york.html
Whisky on the Hudson is a Grand Celebration of 200 rare and exclusive whiskies, poured by Master Blenders, Cellar Masters and Distillery Managers from Scotland, Canada, Ireland and Japan. It will take place on Thursday, August 26th, 2010 from 7:00 p.m. until 10:30 p.m., with a VIP boarding at 6:00 p.m.

♥ ♥ ♥

Michelle Rahn Bridal Event at the Carlyle Hotel - August 27-28th
First of all, your wedding day is all about your own personal style. Why not take a moment and enjoy the unique and indulgent afternoon at the Carlyle Hotel. Designer Michelle Rahn will be previewing her collection, discussing design and her accessories. All of this will help complete your bridal look. You MUST RSVP no later than Aug. 16th on her website. Space is very limited, so do it today. info@michellerahn.com or 312.243.1919 http://michellerahn.com/

♥ ♥ ♥

Did someone say TRUNK SHOW??
Bridal Reflections has a full month of shows at various locations:
ROMONA KEVEZA – with a special in-person appearance on Sat. Aug 13
August 12th - 14th - Fifth Avenue salon
ANNE BARGE – August 13th - 15th – Carle Place/Westbury salon
Where: Bridal Reflections: 5th Avenue location – 260 Fifth Ave (at W.28th) 212.764.3040
Where: Bridal Reflections: Carle Place/Westbury Salon – 80 Westbury Ave Carle Place 516.742.7788

♥ ♥ ♥

When: August 26 –29
Where: Wedding Salon of Manhasset , Manhasset, NY Plz call for appt. 516-869-8455

♥ ♥ ♥

When: August 12 – 14
Where: Mark Ingram Bridal Atelier - 110 East 55th Street, 8th Floor. Plz call for appt. 212 319 6778

♥ ♥ ♥

When: August 12-14
When: August 19-21
When: August 26 through 28
Where: Saks Fifth Avenue - 611 Fifth Avenue. Plz call for appt. 212.753.4000

♥ ♥ ♥

The designer behind Ceci New York, Lisa "Ceci" Johnson, is launching a brand new online magazine called CeciStyle. It looks Haute! Delivered directly to your inbox, the magazine will offer glimpses of the hottest trends in art/decor, jewelry and of course wedding tips and gifts. Go to www.cecinewyork.com to get on the list if you haven't already.

♥ ♥ ♥

After work delights:
Inspired by the luxe, rustic elegance of the Alpine après ski lodges of St. Moritz, Covet Lounge effortlessly blends the best of both worlds: the sophistication and charm of uptown and ultra-sleek vibe of downtown. Covet’s haute Alpine coziness is combined with all the amenities New York City chic has to offer, and this is done through the harmonious pairing of distressed wood with embossed "croc-skin" paneling, and chrome accents. Covet Lounge will be hosting 'After Work Hour' taking place every Thursday evening this summer beginning August 5th at 5:30pm. Check them out as a rehearsal venue. The vibe is cool and the food yummy.
Covet is located at 137 E. 55th Street in New York City.

You know I love good food, good wine, good music and a cool vibe, which is why I’ve written and will continue to encourage you to visit San Rocco Restaurant. Honestly, the food and vibe will make you find a reason to return again and again.
San Rocco - 37 West 24th Street New York, NY 10010 (212) 255-4655. Open seven days a week.

♥ ♥ ♥

London Calling:

A proper cup of tea awaits you. This would be a wonderful bridal tea if you wanted to have a girls weekend in London. Want to take it up a notch, then visit with the queen – well, sort of.
The Garden Café at Buckingham Palace is situated on the West Terrace of Buckingham Palace and overlooking the Palace's famous lawn and lake. It offers a selection of refreshments, including tea, coffee, juice and a choice of cakes and sandwiches and is accessible to visitors to Buckingham Palace during the annual Summer Opening of the State Rooms (Now -1 October 2010). This year the special exhibition at Buckingham Palace is The Queen’s Year which will give visitors an insight into the principal national and ceremonial events in the royal year. You never know, perhaps you’ll catch a glimpse of William and Katie.
Advance tickets and more visitor information can be found at: 44 (0)20 7839 1377, press@royalcollection.org.uk

Is there something going on in your town, send it to me and I'll post it.  bridalease @ gmail.com
Have a good one.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Champagne by Moet offers perfect-pairing

There is nothing like it...
Last Wednesday, we discussed the various kinds of champagne there are. Today, let's take a closer look at Moët & Chandon. No matter what brand you choose, make sure that it pairs with the food you're serving. Here's hoping that this will help act as a guide for you both as you plan your wedding and as you plan all the events to come.

Moët Imperial

Aromas: are radiant, revealing bright yellow-fleshed fruits (apple, pear, yellow peach), honey, floral nuances (lime blossom) and elegant blond notes (brioche and fresh nuts).
Palate: Seductive, richly flavorful and smooth combining generosity and subtlety, fullness and vigor, followed by a delicately fresh crispiness (fruit with seeds), to reveal the magical balance of champagne.
Food pairing: It is perfect with sushi and dumplings, shellfish and fish in light sauces, poached, roasted, or lightly sauced white meats, and fresh fruit salads that are not too sweet.

Rose Imperial

Aromas: are intense and irresistible, a lively bouquet of fresh red summer berries (strawberry, raspberry and red currant) with floral nuances (rose, hawthorn) and a light peppery touch.
Palate: is flamboyant and combines intensity and roundness : fleshy and juicy at first, then firm (fruit stone), with a subtle herbal (mint) finish.
Food pairings: should be simple and intense in aroma, flavor and color. We particularly recommend grilled shellfish, red-fleshed fish in a thin-sliced Carpaccio, grilled or pan-seared, red meat (raw to lightly cooked) in a light sauce, delicious, sun-ripened vegetables and fresh red berries.

Nectar Imperial

Aromas: are generous and rich with tropical fruits (pineapple, mango) and stoned fruits (Mirabelle plum, apricot), capped by nuances of grain (malt) and sweet spices (cinnamon and vanilla).
Palate: it is a succulent blend of richness and elegance, extreme creaminess and vibrant freshness (grapefruit).
Food pairing: Ideal for all sweet and sour, fatty-spicy, sugary-spicy or sweet dishes, Nectar Impérial exalts the flavor of fish, meat and poultry, poached or cooked in a creamy sauce, well-ripened, white-fleshed fruit, tropical or yellow-fleshed fruit, dried or glazed fruit, fatty nuts and spices. Two unusual, highly recommended pairings: foie gras and blue cheeses.

Nectar Rose

Aromas: are intense and deep with ripe berries (wild strawberry, blackberry, black currant) and cherry, nuanced by herbal and heady flowers notes.
Palate: it is a succulent blend of richness and elegance, density and creaminess, extreme fruitiness and vibrant freshness (gooseberry).
Food pairing: Ideal for all sweet and sour, fatty-spicy, sugary-spicy or sweet dishes, Nectar Rosé offers amazing pairings with foie gras marinated in red wines and red fruits based desserts.

I've received some great compliments on this series and I'm thrilled that it's helping you. Feel free to ask me any questions you may have with champagnes, wines and spirits. I want this to be as informative for you, as it's fun for me. Send me your questions to bridalease {at} gmail.com and put "Wine Wednesday" in the subject line. Here's hoping you have a tasty day.


Tuesday, August 3, 2010

You can eat, pray and your bridal party will love these gifts

Eat, Pray Love
Eat, Pray, Love - the key to finding your own happiness
The book by Elizabeth Gilbert, that swept across the literary world and had some woman booking their own trips to “Eat, Pray, Love”, has surely created another opportunity for gifts for your bridal party as their share your own adventure to love.

Fresh, known for their wonderful soaps, scrubs, and prettily wrapped gift items, has a new trio of fragrances that are inspired by the movie. Eat – lemon, basil and bergamot = sweet wine and desert anyone? Pray – spices and fragrances of India = exotic spices and silky undertones that embodies India’s serene sunsets and incense-laced warm wind. Love – Jasmine, mango blossoms that will instantly take you to the South Seas. I’m sure you can find a fragrance that will match each of your bridal party.

Dogeared my favorite eco-friendly company that brought you inspired SATC2 jewels, has designed yet another beautiful collection. The essence of EPL resonated with Dogeared whose philosophy is “Life is a journey”.

“Designing Eat, Pray, Love by Dogeared has been a profound and challenging adventure. We are huge dogearedfans of the book, and feel that it truly relates to what we do at Dogeared every day. It was important for us to create pieces that really reflect the beauty and honesty of this story. We wanted to offer fans of the book something they can connect with, to wear and take on their own personal journeys,” commented Marcia Maizel-Clarke, Dogeared’s founder. “It was a natural connection, because so much of Dogeared’s point of view is already aligned with the meaning and the message behind Eat, Pray, Love. We took our modern, handmade aesthetic, Earth-friendly materials, and quotes and inspiration from the book; and designed an extensive collection that evokes the spirit of Elizabeth Gilbert’s remarkable story.

With a blend of some of their classics, like the Make a Wish necklace and charm, they have created everything from bookmarks, journals luggage tags, travel bags, and of course gems to be worn and adored. In my opinion, these are wonderful no matter where your wedding is, but if you are planning a destination wedding, these extremely affordable gifts would be a perfect way to start your bridal party on their own adventure. You can purchase them from their site but know that Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus Cusp, Bloomingdales, Fred Segal, ABC Home, and Scoop also sell them.

Finally, with so many lovely teas on the market, if you are planning a 'Eat, Pray, Love' themed shower, then you simply must have tea to go with it. I actually sampled it at the NYC Food Show a few weeks ago and it’s quite good. Made with succulent blood oranges from Italy, smooth black tea from India and heart-warming cinnamon from Indonesia a perfect blend. Try it iced for a cool refreshing drink.
Ahhhh, I do feel love in the air, I’m totally at peace and pass the pasta – with two forks of course.

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