Cheers: To Whoever Says Money CAN Buy Happiness!
It’s Friday morning and I’m tidying up the house before my fiancé returns home from a two-day business trip in Texas. Normally, I’m always good for a ridiculously awesome oldie-infused kitchen jam session while cleaning (although my fiancé would argue that it’s just ridiculous). Today, however, just went sour. Instead of blowing out my eardrums, I accidentally (yeah, right!) tuned into the “Rich Kids of Beverly Hills” and suddenly wanted to blow through my bank account and cross all moral boundaries. We all like high quality treats from time to time, but when you’re influenced by the 1% of people that boast about their privileged lifestyle, well, that’s just simply immoral.
Good things come to those who wait, and this past Friday a long awaited, much anticipated celebration was made. Being the result of a show that celebrates life more outrageous than the Kardashian’s, I was in the mood to spend some money. I texted my fiancé that I promised to buy things that “we both enjoyed” and he texted me back “LOL. I’ll call you in 20 minutes.” During those 20 minutes, I put my moral conscience back in check and moved on to a much better idea. Instead of spending money on materialistic things, why not use the money for happiness? I sent him a picture of 2 plane tickets, adding that it was the best deal ever. Buy 2, get 1 free! The price of 2 tickets included my sister-in-law, my four-year-old nephew, and my five-week-old niece. This was the start of a plot to surprise my brother who has been without his family due to starting a job early when he walked in the door from work!
For this week’s #foodiechats #perfectpairings we chose Terra Valentine’s 2002 Marriage Bordeaux Blend from the Spring Mountain District, Napa Valley. Before I had my sister-in-law get on the chair to reach the perfect wine for the evening, I was mindful that my fiancé was not going to be there to enjoy it. Once I zeroed in on our Terra Valentine collection up top and saw that there was a duplicate, there was no need to search more. Terra Valentine celebrates the commitment of marriage with this special blend where select barrels of Bordeaux varietals are united, bringing out the best in each other. Tonight, we celebrate an amazing couple, Becky and Justin, who have sacrificed their time together in order to choose the best road for their family.
We all know Terra Valentine is beloved, but Marriage is nevertheless mind blowing. After taking in multiple sips and letting it open up over dinner it became immediately clear to all of us why it carries its name. It’s an opulent, delicious wine and immediately likeable for it’s broad array of sweet and earthy flavors. However, much like my brother and Becky’s growing family, it doesn’t truly show it’s potential until you get more deeply invested. In fact, it wasn’t until my fiancé Skyped us mid flight that we truly realized what we were drinking.
From now on, I’ll still choose the wines on the wall verses the ones on in the cabinet, but when I see a duplicate I’ll have to remember to check the vintage! This isn’t to say that I still wouldn’t choose the oldest vintage and pair it with Maggiano’s pizza and salad; it just means I’d at least know before hand which one I was enjoying.
This delicious Bordeaux Blend had plenty fruit flavors and balanced itself out with damp earthy notes and spice. Hints of cocoa and clove wafted through subtle layers of leather, filling the palate with nice intensity.
Certain kinds of presence, depth and character lead to a wine’s outstanding ratings, but the tannins are the real lifeblood of the wine. I like to think that a wine’s tannins are similar to a person’s upbringing. No matter how much they age or change according to their surroundings, their foundation and upbringing will forever be a part of them. Likewise, even as a wine ages and loses its fruit vitality, the tannins don’t completely go away. So, what does that mean? You better be familiar with your partner’s upbringing!
Tonight, my amazing fiancé came home to a house full of family and a half glass of Terra Valentine’s Marriage corked up in the cellar. Throughout this entire experience, I learned that every fiancé should have to experience family time before engaging in both the sacrament of marriage and Terra Valentine’s Marriage. It’s the very best testament to someone’s patience…. And after all, you don’t just marry your fiancé, but the entire family!
You don’t need to be a Rich Kid of Beverly Hills to reap the benefits of happy money. Changing how you spend it can lead to an immeasurable increase in your happiness. We may not be boasting about our privileged existence hopping helicopters courtesy of the bank of Mom and Dad, but tonight we proved the saying true that “The best things in life are free, the second best things are very expensive.“ –Coco Chanel
Photo Credit: Jackelyn & Taki
There’s nothing like connecting foodies and companies with one another. Last night’s #Foodiechats did just that. Five great companies came together and sponsored an amazing “Hometown Gems” chat.
We had five amazing sponsors last night including Blue Apron Meals, Datz4Foodies, The Southern Nashville, Miller time Pub, and Slap Ya Mama.
@BlueApronMeals, a company which provides customers with all the ingredients that they need to make a delicious meal in exactly the right proportions, had a blast talking with #Foodiechats. They were intrigued to know about our foodies palate adventures. Then they even gave some of their own trials!
Nashville’s Gem is a restaurant called @thesouthernSOS which is known for it’s “South of Somewhere” menu. They have everything from Chicken & Waffles to Oysters and they had a great time asking everyone what their favorite way to eat them were! Who knew there were so many ways to serve and eat oysters!
@Datz4Foodies, the American Gastropub in Tampa with exceptional culinary flare, helped us see what restaurants can do on Twitter in order to engage more with foodies. It seems a lot of foodies follow new places that they are dying to try!
@Miller_time_pub will match your appetizer of choice with any beer they think will pair well and that you’ll love. They’ve got a knack for that and are willing to show you with everything they’ve got!
Our Sponsor @SlapYaMama proved how much they could spice things up by showing us all the different ways their Cajun Seasoning took a meal to the next level. Our foodies shared how much they not only loved spicy food, but loved the Sponsor’s name as well! Slap Ya Mama offers three seasoning blends that can be utilized with any cooking style and adds a unique flavor to everyday dishes.
Another great week in the #Foodiechats book!
Tweet me @RKStraub87 with your favorite Hometown gem!
What a fun #Foodiechats we had last night! After such an incredible first Small Business chat in January, our team was very excited to bring it back with our “Hometown Gems” theme! We had a great line-up of sponsors: @Datz4Foodies, @BlueApronMeals, @TheSouthernSOS, @SlapYaMama and @Miller_Time_Pub!
One of our sponsors was Datz, an American Gastropub in Tampa with a menu that would make any foodie drool! They are ALL about bacon. Enough said! One of their questions was “What do you think should be a “must-have” menu item for 2014?” There were so many great answers. Pork belly was a favorite!
Another one of our fabulous sponsors was Blue Apron, an amazing company that sends you ingredients and recipes to make delicious meals! A question they asked was “We love sweet potatoes! How do you use this seasonal ingredient?” One answer in particular stood out to me!
Nashville’s The Southern was another sponsor. This restaurant shares some of the BEST pictures of food I’ve ever seen! They asked, “Everyone needs comfort food every once in awhile. What’s your favorite southern comfort dish?” This answers to this question probably made me the hungriest!
The #Foodiechats team is all about adding spice, so we really loved having Slap Ya Mama as a sponsor last night! Their cajun products are right up my alley. They kept it hot with the question, “How spicy do you like to go when adding heat to a dish?”
Our final sponsor was Miller Time Pub, a restaurant in Milwaukee where it is all about the pairing of food and beer! We talked appetizers with their question, “We’re Wisconsinites, so cheese curds are a must-have. What’s your must-have appetizer?”
Thank you to all 5 of our amazing sponsors! We had such a fun time last night.
Tweet me @RoryRoselyn and tell me what your favorite hometown restaurant is!
Their mission is to draw upon a wide range of expertise in beer and food pairings and offer well-founded suggestions for a beer that perfectly complements your meal. For instance, if you’re ordering an Angus beef cheeseburger, they’d recommend a Leinenkugel’s Red Lager. The carbonation and smooth malts whisk the beef and cheese heaviness from your palate with each gulp.
The same passion that made Miller Brewing Company great can be found right here - showcased on the storied walls, cooked into each succulent burger or steak, and reinforced by the perfect brew for your meal.
Follow them on Twitter @Miller_Time_Pub
Blue Apron is a new concept in grocery delivery, built around incredible cooking experiences. They offer a once-a-week subscription service where they deliver all the fresh ingredients you need to make 3 meals, in exactly the right proportions.
They’ve designed their service to teach you fun new recipes, save prep time and also reduce unnecessary waste. By letting Blue Apron shop for you, they can bring you fresher and higher-quality food than you can get on your own in the supermarket, and for better prices!
Here’s how a Blue Apron subscription service works:
Follow them on Twitter @BlueApronMeals
If there’s one thing #Foodiechats loves, it’s comfort food! We can’t get enough of classics like fried chicken and sweet tea, so we were thrilled to feature Church’s Chicken this weekend during their adventures in New Orleans for Mardi Gras.
On Friday, Church’s Chicken celebrated the grand opening of their Slidell, LA location. While they’re still keeping it old school with their fried chicken, they are adding a modern twist with their fresh new look!
We loved seeing the excitement about the new location! Our #Foodiechats community really showed the love for Church’s Chicken, and even stopped by to check it out!
Saturday night was a blast for Church’s Chicken as they took over the French Quarter with big dancing chickens giving away freebies! What a way to kick off Mardi Gras!
Whether you crave fried chicken, biscuits, mashed potatoes or crunchy okra, Church’s Chicken serves up the best in Southern fare. Next time you need some comfort food in your life, head to your nearest location. They’ve been around for 60 years for a reason!
Tweet us @Foodiechats and tell us what your go-to comfort food indulgence is!
Calling all New Yorkers! @VirgolaNYC is the ultimate spot in the West Village for foodies and wine drinkers. We loved getting to feature them this week and share their unique story and delicious menu.
We love a restaurant with a good story! Virgola is located in a restored 1800’s alleyway in the West Village. The uncovering of the alleyway and its restoration is a story of uncovering the soul of a lost piece of New York. We love the beautiful and cozy atmosphere. It’s a great spot for date nights!
For all of us at #Foodiechats, it’s all about the menu, and Virgola really delivers! Virgola offers the very best of East Coast oysters. Just seeing pictures makes us drool.
While oysters are the essence of Virgola’s menu, they offer many other delicious things. From second courses of Italian salumi and formaggi, to small vegetable plates, to a dessert of strawberries macerated in Prosecco, they offer the very best.
Their wine menu is selective but pairs well with their incredible menu.
Our personal favorite menu item is the Virgola Platter. You can’t go wrong with tartare, oysters, ceviche and shrimp!
There is nothing quite like Virgola, which makes it a perfect place for New Yorkers to pause from the fast pace of the city. It’s also a great stop for tourists craving a satisfying meal with the best wine. Virgola is definitely a #Foodiechats hot spot!
Tweet us at @Foodiechats and tell us your favorite wine to pair with oysters!