Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Wine Wednesday - Dalton 2008 Alma

2008 Alma, Dalton Vineyards of Upper Galilee, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc.
We visited this Kosher, Israeli winery situated in the Upper Galilee region during our trip to Israel in July of last year for a friend's wedding. TSA rules allow for 3 bottles of wine per person in your checked luggage, so 6 total for the two of us, but we snuck on a 7th. Shhh. We've loved all of the Dalton wines so far, and opened this Alma blend on Friday as we relaxed at home with out of town guests. The overall consensus, tasty.

Here's a more technical review from a user (Daniel Rogov) on Wine Lovers Page: "A full-bodied blend of 47% each Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot with 6% Cabernet Franc. Deep and dark, with gently caressing tannins and moderate notes of spicy cedarwood, opens to reveal an array of wild berries, currants and citrus peel, those hinting of roasted herbs and espresso coffee. Drink from release–2015. Score 91."

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Washington Place And Beethoven's 9th

Thursday night the hubby, his father, his brother and I had a classy night on the town, beginning with dinner at Washington Place Bistro & Inn and ending with Beethoven's 9th at the Cleveland Orchestra. I always feel like such a lady at the orchestra so I was so excited to go.

Washington Place Bistro is a quaint, slightly upscale restaurant on the edge of Little Italy. Both adjacent to and above the Bistro are the seven hotel rooms that compromise the Washington Place Inn. Unfortunately we were only able to enjoy their Bistro so I have no feedback on the Inns.

We passed their open-concept kitchen on the way to our table located in the
enclosed front porch. I love being able to observe the kitchen and food prep
areas. This one was immaculate - I was pleasantly impressed.
We began dinner with a muscle appetizers, which none of the boys allowed
me to take a picture of because they were "starving" and couldn't wait. Check in on
Foursquare and receive a 1/2 price appetizer coupon (limited time).
The waitress recommended the Shrimp & Grits meal, which I chose.
It was as good as she had hyped it up to be. So yummy!
The boys were all super-original, and each chose the C.A.B. Short Ribs.
The overall consensus was that the meat was very tender, but lacked in flavor.  
The B.I.L is lactose intolerant (as is the hubby), so he was thrilled that they offer
vegan desserts (he went with cupcakes), eliminating any risk of dairy.
In fact, at the end of the meal we found out that Washington Place offers a full vegan
menu every Thursday. Definitely one to check out!
On to the orchestra.    
As my father-in-law so eloquently put it, "You guys just got to see one of the best musical pieces of all time, lead by one of the most famous conductors of all time, performed by one of the best orchestras in the world." He's right, it was amazing!

Photo credits: Washington Place, Life, Love & Cake, and The Cleveland Leader

Thursday, March 8, 2012

International Women's Day - Today's Work Fashion

We've come a long way from the first business "suits" worn by women as they first began entering the workforce. In honor of International Women's Day, which marks the 101st Anniversary of the day European men and women rallied for women's rights to vote, work, etc., here's a view of the today's work appropriate attire. I'm fortunate enough to work in an environment where suits are not a requirement in my everyday wardrobe. Professional, yet casual usually flies unless I'm seeing a client. J.Crew's Wear To Work line perfectly demonstrates what is allowed in our office. Comfortable, classy, and stylish.

Stretch perfect shirt in classic stripe $72

Featherweight cashmere cardigan $178

Long No. 2 pencil skirt in double-serge cotton $128

Jenna's v-neck cardigan $79.50

Hacking jacket in herringbone $198

Madelene dress in wool grabardine $250

Casmere v-neck sweater $168

Pencil skirt in wool crepe $98

Cashmere cable boatneck sweater $258

Cashmere V-neck cardigan $178

Origami sheath dress in wool crepe $198

Photos: J.Crew

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The Progression Of A Puppy Photo Shoot

I got one good pic before it all went downhill
She's had enough

Russell & Bromley - Men's Suede Shoes

While he is far from surpassing Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge as a fashion icon, Prince Harry is currently making waves after sporting several pairs of Russell & Bromley suede shoes on his recent trip to Jamaica. This popular British-based company first began making shoes in 1873 and boasts several A-listers among its' clientele. And at about $180 per pair they're fairly reasonably priced.

Hope nobody steps on those blue suede shoes (I couldn't resist)
Photo: JulianParker-UKPress-AbacaUSA
Photo: Getty Images
Photo: Mark Large
Photo: PA

Photo: Andre Deveaux
Photo: Andre Deveaux
Grey Suede Loafers
Lilac Suede Brogues

Red Suede Driving Shoes, Photo: arthurknightdotcom
Photo: Russell & Bromley
Photo: Russell & Bromley

Yeay, or nay as to whether or not you think your man could pull these off?

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Buttercream Icing Recipe

Preferably using a stand mixer, cream the following ingredients together:
2 cups solid white all-vegetable shortening
2 teaspoons flavoring (butter, vanilla, or almond are popular choices)
3/4 cup water
1/2 teaspoon salt

Then add the dry ingredients below and blend until smooth (roughly 2 minutes):
2 lbs. pure cane confectioner's sugar 10x's powdered
1 tablespoon Meringue Powder

This recipe is ideal for icing cakes. For stiffer icing, best for making flowers and decorations, add more powdered sugar. For softer icing, add more water.

For help icing professionally, read here: Baking Tip #3 and here: Baking Tip #4