You Are Cordially Invited to Champagne Sunday!

Hi Dolls! Has it been that long? I know, I know it really has. I’ve had quite a few life changes that have required my immediate attention, most pressingly, nurturing a new entrepreneurial effort. I’ve also spent a great deal of time thinking about changes and updates I’d like to bring to The Pretty Domestic. Stay tuned!

In the mean time, I confess to truly missing my Dolls. So, until I share the deets re: The Pretty Domestic 2.0, let’s get back to business. It’s Sunday, and you know what that means, “You Are Cordially Invited to Champagne Sunday,” the Fourth of July Edition! Peep the mixology below for some patriotic cocktails fit for the perfect holiday soiree. Whether you are going to an epic pool party, spending the day at the club, or grilling at home for family and friends, a Doll has you covered. Peep the mixology!

Fourth of July Wine Sparklers

wine sparklers

Ingredients 

  • 2 cups watermelon stars
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1 bottle chilled dry white wine such as Fumé Blanc, Chenin Blanc, or Vinho Verde
  • 1 liter chilled lemon lime soda, such as a SodaStream mix, Sprite or 7UP

The Mixology. Place the watermelon stars and blueberries in the bottom of a 1-gallon pitcher. Pour in the white wine and soda, and gently mix to combine. Serve with a few fruit pieces in each cup.

Star Spangled Martini

Star Spangled Martini

Ingredients

  • 4-5 muddled raspberries
  • 2 oz {1½ shots} of citrus vodka
  • ½ oz of lemonade
  • 1 oz blue curacao
  • For Rim: Granulated sugar

The Mixology. Dip the rim of a martini glass in a shallow dish of water, then into granulated sugar to create the sparkly rim. Carefully muddle the raspberries in the glass, crushing until broken down. {Alternatively, you can do this in a sturdier glass and transfer the raspberries over to the martini glass with a spoon.} In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, combine citrus vodka and lemonade. Shake until frosty and pour over raspberries. Hold a spoon upside down over the glass close to the liquid. Carefully and slowly pour chilled blue curacao over the back of the spoon. It should create a separate layer on top of the vodka. Serve immediately.

Patriotic Gin + Tonic

Patriotic Gin and Tonic

Ingredients

  • 2 Shots Gin
  • Tonic
  • Blueberries
  • Raspberries
  • Water

The Mixology. Place blueberries and raspberries ice cube tray, keeping them separate. Use 3-5 blueberries and 1-2 raspberries per ice cube depending on the size of your ice cube tray. Fill ice cube tray with water and freeze. Once frozen, place ice cubes in glass layering the blueberry cubes at the bottom and the raspberry cubes on top. Use about 3 of each type of ice cube per glass, this may vary based on the size of your glass. Pour gin over ice. Fill glass the rest of the water with tonic.

Uncle Samgria

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Ingredients

  • one bottle of Chardonnay
  • one bottle of sweet, fruity wine (we used a strawberry wine)
  • two cans of Sprite Zero
  • blueberries
  • raspberries

The Mixology. At least two hours in advance of the soiree, combine the two bottles of white wine in a pitcher. Add your desired amount of fruit. I prepared our sangria six hours before the party, and I used a fruit infusion pitcher to create a striped effect with the blueberries and raspberries. Let the sangria chill in the fridge. Right before serving, add the two cold cans of Sprite Zero. Pour yourself a tall glass and enjoy!

For an extra dash of patriotism, rim your cocktails with red, white or blue sugar.

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Cheers to the Red, White & Blue!

Until Then, Keep Sharing the Pretty!

The Pretty Domestic

Sources + Images: Kitchn; HonestCooking; Tasty Bev; Life’s Ambrosia

 

 

 

 

Taking the Drama Out of Picking a Holiday Wine One Glass at a Time

The holidays’ social season is in full swing and there is much more entertaining to do. To help us Dolls solve one of the more challenging entertaining questions – “What types of wine shall I serve?” – is guest blogger, wine writer and educator, Shari Sheffield. Shari takes the mystery out of wine selection “one glass at a time.”

Taking the Drama Out of Picking A Holiday Wine One Glass at a Time

The holidays can be D. R. A. M. A.; and trying to choose “the perfect wine” to go with your holiday feast can add to that drama. Trying to find a single wine to please everyone from your grandmother to the newly minted drinking-age college boyfriend your daughter has brought home is a challenge. With all the preparations required, quite frankly, don’t you already have enough worry planning your menu? Stuff the turkey before cooking or after? Cranberry sauce with whole berries or none? Sweet potato soufflé or candied yams casserole? Christmas goose or rack of lamb? And let’s not even get into the seating arrangements that must be considered ensuring that a family kerfuffle doesn’t erupt – again.

One tip I give to quickly calm down those responsible for securing the wine for the festivities – pick one white, one red and one sparkling wine. It’s so simple it often gets overlooked. You will invariably have guests at your table who will make a face and whine dramatically: “I only like white” or “I only like red.” Serving at least one type of each will put a cure, at least, to that issue.

But, of course, you can go all out and turn the holidays into an opportunity to try multiple wines in one setting. This can be fun and wine will rarely be wasted. It is also a chance to explore bottles you might not normally try and discuss.

Another way to totally obviate the pressure of choosing the right wine is to ask each guest to bring a different type of grape varietal (one brings a Chardonnay, one a Merlot and so forth). You can also assign each guest to bring a bottle from a different region. This will result in your own informal private wine dinner right at the holiday dinner table.

However, if you choose to select the wines yourself, here are a few recommendations for food friendly wines that will pair well with multiple dishes and please the cast of characters that my cross your doorstep into the new year.

The Bubbles.

For domestic sparkling wines with great quality and style serve Schramsberg Brut California Sparkling Wine around $15.00 and Gloria Ferrer Brut or Blanc de Blanc California Sparkling Wine approximately $15.  For real French bubbly forgo the obvious orange label Veuve Cliquot and try Pierrer-Jouet for a lighter more refreshing champagne.

Wine-Experts-say-Holiday-Champagne-Recession-is-Over

The Whites.

Riesling is a versatile white grape varietal. Wines from it can be sweet, off dry and dry. Look for off dry rieslings from Washington state and Germany for pairing with entrees and hors d’oeuvres.  A less dry Riesling will go well with salty, sweet, and spicy foods. Rieslings classic apple/citrus flavors and balanced acidity won’t overpower many dishes. Choose a sweet riesling for dessert alone, as an after dinner drink or pair with apple pie and fruit based desserts. Try Bonny Doon’s California Riesling or Rosemount Estate Diamond Traminer (Australia), approximately $10.

For a White Blend try Perrin Cote Du Rhone Blanc, 2011 under $17. The Vioginer and Grenache Blanc take the leading role as the predominate grapes in this blend. Marsanne and Roussanne play supporting roles which makes this wine’s lemon flavors and floral notes heavenly at this price point. This can be sipped alone or paired with seafood, foul and cream based dishes.

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The Reds.

Pinot Noir. DeLoach Russian River Pinot Noir $21, has cherry and plum flavors that pair well with herbed stuffing, smoked salmon, dark meat poultry without overpowering the rest of your dishes.

Syrah. Kunde Syrah costs approximately $16. Syrah can be light or tannic with a lot of structure. This lighter style Syrah, aka Shiraz, has peppery notes and a spicy edge along with lightness.

Merlot. Markham Merlot from California is very smooth and food friendly. Perfect, if a crown roast or lamb will be served at your holiday meal. It has structure and complexity. It is also velvety with chocolate notes.

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Cheers and Happy Holidays!

-Shari Sheffield, Wine Writer and Educator | Twitter: @ShariSheffield

There you have it Dolls. Your holiday wine selections have been made for you. Leave us a message if you try any of these suggestions. Now, to those seating arrangements. Oh and by the way, look for most guest blog posts from Shari in the New Year.

Until Then,

Keep Sharing the Pretty

L.

Photographs | Shutterstock, Craft & Cork, & Mainstreet

 

 

 

But It’s Not Thanksgiving Yet!!

Hey Dolls! I know, I know, we haven’t even enjoyed Thanksgiving dinner, and yet, the Christmas and Hanukkah are knocking at the door. There’s tons of holiday prep that occurs this time of the year; but at the top of my list is finding and ordering the perfect holiday cards. Lord knows I need to start early, because they take forever to address, stamp and mail.  (Yep, I am still a snail mail girl!) That said, I wanted to share several sites where I’ve had success in ordering the most festive of cards. Peep the deets.

Effie’s Paper. Effie’s paper is the creative brainchild of the über stylish Kalyn Johnson. My favorite paperie, Effie’s Paper has the swankiest of all “modern stationery and gift products for moms, busy professionals and social butterflies.” Effie’s also has the hippest holiday cards.

Effies Paper

Papyrus. Papyrus does individual cards, boxed sets and custom printing. They are my “go-to” paperie for an any ocassion card.

Papyrus Holiday Card

tinyprints. This online retailer has cornered the holiday photo card market. Whether you’re into showing off your fab fam with one photo or six, or if want to wish your clients a happy holidays by gifting them with a 2016 card/calendar, you name it, they  have it. But what do I like best about Tiny Prints? They have a huge selection of glitter holiday cards. A Doll loves her sparkle.

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Voilà! There are my picks for the perfect holiday cards!

 

Until Then,

L.

The Pretty Domestic

 

 

 

You Are Cordially Invited to Champagne Sunday!

Good Morning Dolls! I hope you had a wonderful Fourth of July. We spent a delightful afternoon with family and friends celebrating the holiday and my Mr’s birthday at the beach. Late afternoon, a family house guest treated us to a decadent twist on the normal holiday libation, the Chocolate Cream Pie Shooters, or Chocolate Vodka Shots. They were absolutely to die for! So good, I knew I had to locate the recipe and share today. Peep the mixology below.

Chocolate Cream Pie Shooters
Chocolate Shots

Ingredients |

  • 2 ounce Chocolate Milk
  • 1 ounce Godiva Chocolate Liqueur
  • 1 ounce Whipped Vodka
  • Whipped Cream
  • Chocolate Shavings, for garnish

The Mixology | Pour chocolate milk, chocolate liqueur, and vodka over ice in a cocktail shaker. Strain into four shot glasses and garnish with shavings. Place a dollop of whipped cream on four spoons. Take the shot and chase it with a spoon of whipped cream! Chin, chin! Enjoy the rest of your holiday weekend!

Until Then, Keep Sharing the Pretty

L.

The Pretty Domestic

Image | Living Better Together

Little Things that Make Me Swoon!

Hey Dolls! It’s the Fourth of July holiday weekend, and I’m sharing some of my holiday inspiration – all thing red, white and blue – that are making me swoon!

Red, White + Bubbly

Red White and Bubbly

With its chic nautical red, white and blue design, this Domaine Chandon Brut Classic limited-edition bottle, inspired by the great “All-American Summer,” is the perfect way to sip in style.

The White Haute Manicure

White Haute Manicure

Neat, clean, an fresh – these white manicures speak summer. Love!

Fendi Blue + White or Red + White Satin Open Toe Mule

Red White and Blue Mules

Summer and the Fourth aren’t just for flip flops and thong sandals. These numbers are perfect to sport with white shorts, a crisp linen shirt; or beautiful caftan as you are entertaining.

Red, White + Relaxing

iRed White and Blue Furniture

I love the idea of styling lawn furniture with red and white pillows to capture the spirit of the Fourth of July holiday.

Images: Chandon USA | Ashley Ella Designs  | Bergdorf Goodman | Pinterest

However you mark the holiday, do it Pretty Domestic style. Happy a safe and happy Fourth!

Until Then, Keep Sharing the Pretty,

L.

The Pretty Domestic

You Are Cordially Invited to Champagne Sunday!

Hey Dolls! I try to get Champagne Sunday posts to you early; but the time got away from me today. However, I quickly realized that it’s never too late in the day for a Champagne Sunday recipe! C’est ici!

Today’s cocktail is compliments of my Mother, the original Doll, who interestingly enough doesn’t imbibe. She did however observe a cocktail at a soiree she attended, and was so fascinated that shared it with me – The Blooming Champagne Cocktail. Peep the mixology below.

The Blooming Champagne Cocktail

WildHibiscusInChampagne

Ingredients 

The Mixology. Position the hibiscus flower at the bottom of a champagne flute and slowly fill it with your favorite bubbly. As the champagne fizzles, the hibiscus flower will open up and bloom in your glass. Once you drink your bubbly, refill it. Or, just nibble on the edible flower. Chin, chin!

Image | As Good As It Gets

Until Then, Keep Sharing the Pretty,

L

The Pretty Domestic

You Are Cordially Invited to Champagne Sunday!

Yes Dolls, I’ve heard you, not everyone imbibes. And yes, there are times when I am out socially and not in the mood, particularly during the summer months. My go-to, the Virgin Cape Codder. Named the “cousin of the Cosmo,” the Cape Codder is best served pool side or at the beach. Peep the mixology below.

The Cape Codder

Cape Codder_1

Ingredients.

  • 4 ounces (1/2 cup) cranberry juice
  • 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) fresh lime juice or Rose’s Lime Juice
  • club soda
  • 1 cup ice
  • Fresh or frozen cranberries, for garnish (optional)

The Mixology. Combine cranberry juice and fresh lime juice in a tall glass; top with club soda stir. Add ice. Garnish with fresh or frozen cranberries if desired and serve.

For those that want the traditional Cape Codder with a twist, peep the mixology for the Cucumber Cap Codder.

Ingredients.

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups grated English cucumber (about 1 cucumber), plus cucumber wedges, for garnish
  • 9 ounces vodka, chilled
  • 12 ounces cranberry juice (no sugar added)
  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice (from about 4 limes)
  • Ice, for serving

The Mixology. Bring sugar and 1 cup water to a boil in a small pot. Reduce heat, and simmer, stirring until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat, stir in grated cucumber, and let cool. Pour through a fine sieve into a bowl or large glass measuring cup, and discard solids (you should have 2 cups syrup). Cucumber syrup can be refrigerated up to 3 days.

Combine cucumber syrup, vodka, and cranberry and lime juices in a 2-quart pitcher. Cocktail can be refrigerated up to 8 hours. Serve over ice, and garnish with cucumber wedges. Serve. Chin, chin!

Source | Martha Stewart

Until Then | Keep Sharing the Pretty,

The Pretty Domestic