We were beyond thrilled to spend time in France this summer. One of the highlights was the tour of Vranken Pommery Champagne in Reims. Their bottles make amazing candles!
Once Valentines passes, we're moving on and ready for Spring and lighter food. I've made every kind of cassoulet out there this winter. They are full of fresh vegetables, tasty meat and VERY TIME CONSUMING, but we love them. Here in Atlanta it's been in the high 60's all week, so James has pulled out the grill. Tonight he's making one of his signature dishes, a Grilled Pork Tenderloin Salad. Here is the recipe.
Grilled Pork Tenderloin Salad
The number one question I am asked ...How do you cut your bottles? (Trade secret)
The number two question is...What's your best selling fragrance?
I finally did the tally and was surprised by the results. I thought the stores and our Etsy shop would be identical. Wrong!! Store owners have their favorites and customers have theirs! Wouldn't it be boring if everyone liked the same thing??
#1 - Sangria White Peach
#2 - Fig & Apple & Oak were tied (seasonal and holidays are busiest)
#3 - White Tea & Ginger and Unscented were tied
#4 - Red Currant
#5 - Clean Linen
#6 - Naked in the Woods AKA Tuscan Twilight
#1 - Fig
#2 - Merlot (only lost to Fig by 4 candles)
#3 - Victorian Christmas AKA Market Spice (stores sell this all year)
#4 - Red Currant
#5 - Sangria White Peach
#6 - Naked in the Woods AKA Tuscan Twilight
There you have it! Happy sniffing!!
It's a new year! Get out of your comfort zone! I've been on an anti-Chardonnay kick for a few years, but now I've decided to listen to my own advice with these three delicious whites.
Mannequin by Orin Swift
This wine maker has the edgiest and most interesting wine labels I've ever seen! We tasted this at Herron's Wine Bar in Acworth this week. *Ladies, mark your candles for the last Wednesday of each month for Wine, Women and Wednesday. A wonderful monthly event, tasting wine, delicious nibbles and featured vendors.
Dazzling straw-gold in color, the wine serves up superrich aromas of ripe pineapple, vanilla bean, raw coconut, and honeyed lemon. Lush with complex flavors of roasted fig, apricot, green apple, and orchard fruit. It was delicious, and though mostly Chardonnay, they've added a blend of Grenache Blanc, viognier, Marsanne, Roussanne, and Muscat. It was delicious and a crowd pleaser. You can find it at Herron's on Main Street for about $34.99. Worth every penny and it's made me like Chardonnay again!
Every Christmas my dear friend, Holly and I enjoy a wonderful lunch and have a wine exchange. Over the years we've chosen countries, varietals, whites, reds, you name it. This time we just picked something yummy. It's a challenge to find a delicious wine for $10, but that's our quest.
I received Open Kimono Sauvignon Blanc as my gift. She knows I love Sauvignon Blanc and this one did not disappoint.
This Marlborough style of Sauvignon Blanc-tangy, tart with a blast of acidity. This delivered on all. The wine has the herbaceous, cut grass aroma and nice tropical flavor notes. As the mercury starts to rise this summer, (can you tell I have Spring Fever?) this is a great wine to chill down and chill out. Retails for $10
Pine Ridge Chenin Blanc /Viognier
One of the perks of working a part-time gig at a wine shop is tasting wines at a big vendor show. We're talking a convention center with hundreds of wineries represented and thousands of wines. They are so high-tech now, if you like a wine, you take a pic of the bar code with your phone and the wine company emails you a list of your favorites. Beats carrying a notebook and trying to take notes while holding a glass and your purse!! You quickly learn to swirl and spit or they take you out on a stretcher!
Our wonderful rep, Michael, is always great at taking us around and pointing out his favorites. When he suggested this blend, I didn't even want to try it. I've never cared for the taste of Viognier, but I have to tell myself to keep an open mind.
I LOVED IT!
Brilliant and refreshing, this blend bursts with an array of delightful aromas, opening with fresh lemon, juicy honeydew melon, pomelo and sweet mango, complemented by soft orange blossom and carnation floral notes. The palate is crisp and mouth-watering, leading with luscious papaya, yellow pear and ruby grapefruit flavors, that are balanced by hints of tangerine and white tea. A clean and lively finish. AWESOME! Retails for $13.99.
I'm ending this with a request that you support your local businesses. We are a world of big box stores and America was started with Mom and Pop shops. They are being forced out by chains. I'm always surprised when people tell me they never go to downtown Acworth, my hometown. They live minutes from downtown and never take advantage of the wonderful restaurants and awesome shops like Herrons. PLEASE SHOP SMALL BUSINESS!
I LOVE Real Simple magazine. I've collected many favorite recipes. When I bake, it's usually breakfast foods over desserts. Came across this twist on the traditional blueberry and asked Remy to whip it up. I loved the zing of the ginger and it's delicious.
BLUEBERRY AND GINGER SCONES
Hands-On Time: 20 minutes - Total Time: 50 minutes - Makes 12
3 cups white whole-wheat flour, plus more for shaping the dough (I used White Lily)
1/3 cup plus 1 tbsp. granulated sugar
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. kosher salt
12 tbsp. (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1- 1/4 cups fresh blueberries
1/2 cup chopped crystallized ginger (found it at the spice aisle at Super Target)
3/4 cup milk, plus more for brushing
Turbinado sugar, for sprinkling
1. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. (Dollar Tree)
2. Whisk together the flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Add the butter and blend with a pastry blender for your fingers until crumbly. Fold in the blueberries and ginger. Stir in the milk.
3. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and form into two 6-inch disks. Using a chef's knife, cut each disk into 6 wedges. Place the wedges on the prepared sheet, brush with milk, and sprinkle lightly with the turbinado sugar.
4. Bake, rotating pan once, until golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes. cool on the pan. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Isn't it funny how life can go full circle. The idea for "Vino-Eco" was formed while I worked at The Oak Barrel, many moons ago. Those years were a great time in my life. Fast-forward 5 years, the Oak Barrel has sold twice since then, and is now Herron's Coffee & Wine Bar. It's a completely different place, and perfect for downtown Acworth. They serve gourmet coffee drinks, gelato, wine by the glass, and have an Eno-matic wine machine, so customers can try a taste, half-glass or full-glass of a delicious wine. Of course, they still sell bottles of wine, offer live music on the weekends, and it's truly a cool place to hang out! So now to the FULL CIRCLE part of my story. For the past several months, I've been the wine-buyer for Herron's. It's been an awesome experience and once again, I have the opportunity to learn about wine, taste new wines, and continue my wine education. Thank you to Jenifer and Spencer! They are probably two of the nicest people I've ever met. If you have a chance stop in and meet them or one of the great staff of people at Herron's.
How do I handle my "already busy candle schedule" with buying wine at Herron's, you ask? It takes a whole lot of shuffling, but there is always time for something you love!
During my new adventure, I came across this delicious Shiraz from Australia. St. Hallett "FAITH" Shiraz. It's my favorite wine of the moment. Stop at Herron's and sample this delight in the wine machine. Let me know what you think?
At Vino-Eco we're all about recycling and reusing. We can pour a candle in just about anything...tea cups, pottery, silver, a candle that you've burned, but can't bear to throw away, be creative! We can refill again and again.
We received a unique order this week, a birthday gift for a guy who is a pharmacist. These great vintage Apothecary Jars will make the perfect gift.
After a week of pulling my hair out, the website is 80% complete. It's been a lot to manage two ecommerce sites, so we've streamlined all the retail candles to our Etsy shop. You can browse our website and with a click of a button, pop over to the Etsy site to order.
Would love your feedback on the new site. Still tweaking it!