Brooklyn Manhattan

Friday, October 31, 2014

A good Manhattan includes a healthy dash of bitters–but this clever cocktail substitutes a hoppy IPA for a bit of a beer-based kick. It's the perfect autumn indulgence as you wait for trick-or-treaters to arrive!

Brooklyn Manhattan

2 oz rye whiskey
1 oz Indian Pale Ale
1/2 oz sweet vermouth
orange slice

Combine rye and vermouth in a mixing glass with ice; stir and strain into a chilled coupe glass. Top with beer and a thin slice of orange.

Notes: Hoppy, bitter IPA–the boldest you can buy–will best substitute for traditional bitters in this cocktail. Some of our recent favorites include Ballast Point's Sculpin and Firestone's Union Jack, but the guy at your local liquor store will definitely have a recommendation. Cheers–and Happy Halloween!

Image by James Ransom for Food52.


Thursday, October 30, 2014

This week I'm loving my puppy charge, the promise of a quiet weekend solo (and the return of my guy early Sunday morning), and lots and lots of orange! Though Christmas is probably my favorite holiday these days, Halloween was the best growing up, and I just adore this time of year!

Tell me, did you love Halloween as a kid, or do you find yourself getting more into it as an adult?

Maureen and Hank

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

I'll admit it–I'm a total sucker for fall. This pumpkin-filled season makes me gleeful, and Maureen and Hank know just how I feel. They chose the last weekend in October for their Hamptons fête, guaranteeing spectacular foliage and crisp cool air for a day they won't soon forget.

Maureen wore a delicate lace gown by Elizabeth Fillmore and metallic sandals by Loeffler Randall, and carried a classic white bouquet of roses, freesia, silver brunia and dusty miller by florist Kim John Designs. Crystal drop earrings and a narrow gold crown set off her romantic braided updo, and she curled up under a fur shrug when the day grew cool. Her maids wore navy lace dresses from Alice + Olivia, Adrianne Pappell, Diane von Furstenberg and Banana Republic, and carried colorful bouquets of orange dahlias and roses, blue thistles and hydrangeas, and snowberries and silver brunia by Kim John Designs. Hank wore a custom-made blue suit by Alton Lane with a bold orange tie; the couple's wedding date was embroidered in orange onto the cuff of his crisp white shirt.  

After exchanging traditional vows at the Church of St. Rosalie, the newlyweds and their guests headed to Ocean View Farm, a private Hamptons residence for an autumnally-inspired reception. An apple cider punch was served during the cocktail hour, and the property's barn had been reimagined as a cozy lounge and dining space. A Small Affair catered a fall feast for the intimate reception, and the DJ made sure everyone cut a rug on the dance floor. At the end of the night, the new Mr and Mrs danced beneath a handmade marquee sign that read "L O V E" before embarking on their next adventure–marriage.

These images by Brklyn View Photography are pretty spectacular; tell me, what's your favorite detail from this romantic, rustic affair?


Tuesday, October 28, 2014

It's a good thing girls who love orange can pick up a pair of custom Manolos; aren't these punchy BBs divine?


Monday, October 27, 2014

After a few punishing weekends, I was thrilled when I finally headed home on Friday with no plans to be back in the office first thing Saturday morning. Leisurely breakfasts and long afternoons of writing danced in my head–and they're exactly what I got! 

John picked me up a little later than usual on Friday evening and we headed back to our neighborhood for Indian food. When we spotted an opening parking spot and John's first San Francisco friend behind the bar at South though, we made a stop in Hayes Valley for tequila cocktails and caught up with friends who happened to drop in, too! Of course, no Friday night is complete with curry, so we grabbed takeout and headed home to finally spend an evening together.

We woke up early on Saturday morning and, knowing John would be working for much of the day, made a simple breakfast of soft-scrambled eggs and toast. We cleaned house before I drove John to work, and then I headed home for a quiet day alone at home–a true luxury after the last few weeks. I did some holiday shopping, cleaned out my inbox and then curled up with my highlighters for a productive afternoon. I grabbed John for work as the sun was just beginning to set, and after his run, he insisted that we go out on a proper date. We both tugged on our fall finest and grabbed a table for two at our favorite little pizza joint. Two glasses of wine and a spicy sausage and honey pizza later, we were grinning goofily at each other and wondering why we didn't do this more often! We dashed into our local grocery store for coconut gelato and curled up on the couch with dessert in frosted sour glasses usually reserved for cocktails.

John pulled me out of bed early on Sunday, and I finally baked the spiced pumpkin loaf whose ingredients I'd set out the afternoon before. Cinnamon and nutmeg filled the kitchen while we cooked up our favorite weekend breakfast–avocado toast topped with poached eggs and roasted fingerling potatoes. Over coffee and tea we planned our day, and then got to work checking projects off the list! Eventually I realized that I needed one last book from the public library, so we drove downtown to fetch it and grabbed some sushi on the way back. All that activity had exhausted John, so while he took an afternoon nap, I dug into my latest project, my keyboard clicking and the page count rising. Later I treated myself to a little stretching and sweating (a great antidote to sitting and writing), and then John and I teamed up to make a rich fall supper–saffron risotto with slow-roasted butternut squash. One juice glass of rosé was all it took the two of us to feel ready for bed, and we fell asleep smiling about what a wonderful weekend it had (finally!) been.

Tell me, what were you up to this weekend? Carving pumpkins, putting last-minute touches on your Halloween costume, or doing some fall baking, perhaps?

Image by Katie Stoops Photography, pumpkin arrangement by Mona Ray.


Friday, October 24, 2014

Salted and spiced, this G&T is quite unlike its buttoned-up British cousin. I enjoyed one on Coqueta's outdoor patio recently, and felt instantly transported to the squares of Barcelona–not at all a bad place to be!


lemon twist
sprig of rosemary
pinch of sea salt
1 caperberry
2 arbequina or other small, mild, aromatic olives
2 oz Plymouth gin
4 oz tonic water

Fill a rocks glass with ice. Rub lemon twist and rosemary sprig around rim and drop into glass. Add a pinch of sea salt, caperberry and olives. Add gin and stir to combine. Top with tonic.

The beauty of gin & tonic is what an uncomplicated drink it is; this recipe does include a few more ingredients, but it's equally easy to assemble. I adore Fever-Tree tonic for this and any other sipper, but any high-quality tonic will do the job–cheers!

Image by Chris Rochelle, recipe for Chow.


Thursday, October 23, 2014

This week I'm loving wedding to-do lists (and the husbands who make them), holiday party planning, and drinks with dear friends in the midst of madness. Tell me, what are you loving this week?

This modern backyard celebration is easy in the best way.

A fabulous art gallery fête.

This Texas ranch wedding left me craving wide open spaces.

A Chicago celebration that's simply lovely.

My favorite tribute to Oscar de la Renta.

Sarah and Gillis

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

 The Nichols, The Nouveau RomanticsThe Simplifiers and a magnificent Austin mansion were all the elements required to bring Sarah and Gillis' spectacular celebration to life. The event combined romantic elements of the belle époque with a "cabinet of curiosities" that was perfect for two scientists in love, and made for a wedding not soon to be forgotten!

The bride wore a slim lace sheath from J.Crew and a simple pair of embroidered white pumps. Drop earrings set off her low chignon, and at the end of the evening, Sarah pulled on a classic gray coat with a fur collar. Her bridesmaids wore black vintage dresses and carried smaller versions of Sarah's moody wine bouquet by The Nouveau Romantics. Gillis' groomsmen went for black tie, while the groom stood out in a rich green bowtie.

After a simple ceremony in Chateau Bellevue's courtyard, the newlyweds and their guests enjoyed cocktails and mariachi music by local favorites Mariachi Jalisco. Then they headed to the dining room, transformed by The Nouveau Romantics with bell jars, scientific specimens, textural floral arrangements, candles and scarab wax seals, a nod to the luxe letterpress invitations, also created by The Nouveau Romantics. Despite the fact that the pair never made it to their dance lessons, their first dance, to Django Reinhardt's "I'm Confessin' (That I Love You)" went perfectly. After a slice (or two) of the collection of understated cakes from Whole Foods, the couple ended the evening with a song written by the groom's uncle for the occasion–definitely one of my favorite details from this unique celebration! 

Tell me, what's your favorite image from this amazing Austin wedding?

Images by The Nichols

A Crimson Kiss – Timeless Events and Classic Cocktails by Ana Degenaar : Blogger