April 25, 2017

Red Wine Berry Spritzer

Guess what guys… Tonight, at 7:30 pm, I’m hopping on a plane and heading to… Italy! Right?! As you guys saw, we had a jam-packed (and INCREDIBLE) weekend full of events at LMP, so this vacation is coming at a perfect time.  I can’t wait to spend a week relaxing, soaking up all those Italian sights, eating copious amounts of pizza, and drinking all of the wine.

This weeks cocktail is inspired by this trip and all of the red wine I will be drinking … the Red Wine Berry Spritzer.

Here’s what you need:

-your favorite red wine (we used a leftover bottle we had in the office)
-Italian sparkling water
-fresh berries (we used raspberries, strawberries and blueberries)
-fresh lime, cut into 1/4 wedges
-fresh mint
-ice

Here’s what to do:

1) Rinse all berries and chop up strawberries into 1/4 size pieces. Set aside for garnishing later on.
2) Add ice to each of your wine glasses, filling about halfway. Add in assortment of fresh berries.


3) Squeeze in some fresh lime juice, 1 wedge per glass.
4) Pour red wine on top of ice, lime juice & berries, filling your glass about 3/4 of the way. Let sit for a few minutes to allow berries to soak up some wine.


5) Top off each glass with Italian Sparkling Water. Garnish with fresh mint, and enjoy!

Natalie whipped up some caprese skewers with fresh basil, grape tomatoes and mozzarella, which was the perfect light snack and paired perfectly with this light and fresh cocktail. It certainly did the trick in getting us into the vacation spirit!

You can follow along with my trip on my Instagram, and I will be sharing photos and other details on the blog soon!

Ci vediamo la settimana prossima… Ciao!

xx, Abby
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April 18, 2017

Derby Day Mint Julep Raspberry Iced Tea

We love ourselves a good Kentucky Derby Party! Flowers, horses, big hats, booze… yes please!

When our friends at Four Roses Bourbon sent us a few bottles of their Bourbon Whiskey to try, I decided to play around and come up with a Derby Day cocktail that was a bit more non-traditional… the Mint Julep Raspberry Iced Tea!

Here’s what you need:

-Four Roses Bourbon Whiskey
-freshly brewed raspberry iced tea (you can make your own or buy at the store)
-simple syrup
-fresh raspberries
-fresh lemons
-fresh mint
-ice

Here’s what to do:
1) In a pitcher, combine 5 oz. bourbon, 2 oz. simple syrup.  Take some fresh mint sprigs and rip into pitcher to release flavor.  Stir to combine all ingredients, and top with lemon slices.
2) Fill each cocktail glass about halfway with ice.  Pour pitcher mixture on top of ice to fill each glass.
3) Garnish with lemon slice, fresh raspberry and sprig of mint.
4) Add a straw for sipping, and enjoy!

I styled these beauties on our favorite gold bar cart, which we decorated with these adorable DIY Derby Balloons, which Maggie will be teaching you how to make on the blog tomorrow!

Happy Derby Day! I hope you enjoy.

Until next week…

Photos by Maggie Antalek

xx, Abby
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September 15, 2016

Hamptons hanging with Maybelline

We were honored to be a part of the global Maybelline IT girls Hamptons weekend! After the epic pool party, it was time for the girls to relax while we changed over the house for an evening of fun under the stars. The rain stopped so we were finally able to enjoy the gorgeous yard.
As the ladies entered the house, a 12 foot Step and Repeat was setup, complete with 3D NYC buildings all outfitted with the latest makeup products from Maybelline. Thank you 11th Street Workshop for this beauty.
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The first thing everyone saw as they made their way through the house and onto the back patio was the amazing “Lip and Lash Bar” we created. Under the black and white cabana, we set up a long lacquer table with a light up bulb mirror set on top. What a gorgeous pop of light as the sun went down.
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Inside the cabana, the girls had access to every Lip and Lash product they could ever want!
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We took advantage of the clear night time skies and setup LED spheres in assorted sizes and strung bulb lights throughout the yard. These gave SO much gorgeous light and created an inviting outdoor space.
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In addition, we re-positioned all of our outdoor lounge furniture and brought in an oversized fire pit. They loved sitting around the fire, drinking, chatting and enjoying a summertime classic –  Smores!
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As the ladies made their way back into the house, they found a sweet NYC skyline candy bar setup in the kitchen. Candies and lipsticks in shades of “Maybelline” hot pink were setup in rectangular glass vessels and set in front of an oversized skyline cutout.
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We also had smaller skylines constructed and to these we glued more product to create these awesome centerpieces around the house. Pretty gorgeous, right?
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When it was time to eat, Janet O’Brien catering wowed with some amazing passed apps and an impressive sushi bar. We love food that looks as good as it tastes!
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With day one complete, it was time for the gals to get some rest as they were in for even more fun on day two…img_2822
On the second day of their Hamptons weekend, the Maybelline IT girls woke up early to take part in a NIKE workout session at the house. After a great sweat session, they changed into their cutest boating attire and spent the day on a catamaran that took off from Sag Harbor. Not a bad day so far! While they enjoyed the day, we were back at the house setting up for the elegant dinner party that awaited them that evening.
We started with gorgeous white lacquer tables and layered on matte black plates, gold cutlery, pink glassware, black and white striped napkins, gold and white vases and of course bold fuchsia flowers.
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Ghost chairs were the perfect compliment to this tablescape.
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Details Details Details!
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In lieu of traditional place cards, I thought it would be so fitting to use a photo from each girls’ instagram account to serve as their seating card. How amazing did these turn out?? The pictures were printed on card stock and placed into a small wooden block. It’s the little details that really pull a table like this together.
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In addition to the formal seating area, we created a new lounge vignette by bringing out some modern leather couches and chairs and this chic white fireplace.
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After dinner we surprised the girls with a fun balloon drop from the top balcony!
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It was the perfect way to end a pretty fabulous few days in the Hamptons with these gorgeous Maybelline IT girls.  CHEERS ladies!!
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Photography : Maggie Antalek
3D Step & Repeat / NYC skyline(s) / Black Carpet production: 11th Street Workshop
Black and White cabana & white lacquer dining tables: Luxe Event Rentals
Light up bulb mirrors: Rent Quest NYC
LED Spheres: Luminous Designs
Event Lighting: Karen Lenahan Designs
Flatware, glassware & gold vases : CB2
Black matte plates: Party Rental Ltd
White faceted vases: Dwell Studio
Instagram place cards: Artifact Uprising
Catering & Sushi: Janet O’Brien Catering
Lounge furniture: Taylor Creative Rentals
Florals: Sag Harbor Florist

xx, Michelle
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September 5, 2016

Lil’ Firefighters to the Rescue!

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Three is the age when kids start to know what they like and don’t like. Cars, trains, firetrucks! That’s exactly what lil’ Billy wanted the theme of his third birthday party to be.

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We love nothing more than parties in the backyard. Fire up the grill, roll towels by the pool and sip on sangria. And for Billy’s party we were going to do just that.

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We took full advantage of the backyard by bringing in a water slide and have a magician perform a wacky show.

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Our favorite Hamptons caterer, Janet O’Brien put out the perfect afternoon spread starting with a huge bowl of rosé sangria and chips, salsa + guac.

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Once the guests settled in, Looney Louie grabbed their attention and put on a hilarious and fun performance. Following the show, lunch was served buffet style and each dish was more delicious than the next.

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Of course we placed adorable details all over the place. Sunflowers in boots?! Clusters of balloons, honeycombs hanging from the umbrellas and my favorite… the kids picnic tables set for each child with a fireman’s hat, hydrant sippy cup and “fire extinguisher” water bottles that Maggie custom design for the party.

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For dessert we used the “stop, drop and roll” way and served a tiered tray of “fire” cupcakes that were sitting on top of gum drops and Tootsie Rolls. Along side were fireman hat cookies and a cake so stunning we were afraid to cut into it. All desserts were made by our friends at Sugar Sugar in Quogue.

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Lil’ Billy had a blast with his friends while the grown ups enjoyed rosé and beers. Happy birthday little guy! We can’t wait to see what interests you next year….

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Photos by the amazing Sasithon Photography.

xx, Seri
Party conversation
  1. Brittany

    AMAZING party and awesome photos!!!!!!! So nicely put together.

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September 2, 2016

Ready, Set, Weekend with Simply Beautiful Eating

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For those of you who used to follow my personal blog Narsbar Confessions of Every Day Life, you may recall a post about how much Chinese cuisine I consumed as a child. Yep, my parents used to take us to Lichee Gardens every single Sunday and order a boat load of food from egg rolls to almond cookies and everything in between. And, we usually had the same waiter – Mr. Wilson Lee.

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This guy was a genius. He would go into the kitchen and bring us “extra special” treats because my father tipped him well. Oh, and the portions of food were always larger than the table next to us because Mr. Wilson Lee was our very own “gangsta waiter”.

Sadly, Lichee Gardens AND Mr. Wilson Lee are GONE FOREVER along with the most delicious egg rolls on the planet. I’m not kidding you. THEY WERE THE BEST. No really. They were.

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Delicious crunchy vegetables and other unknown substances all encased in the most mouthwatering soft egg roll outer shell.

If I had to choose one dish as my favourite ……it was that egg roll. I could live on them and inside of them. That’s how I would want to ROLL.

Okay, so this post has absolutely nothing to do with egg rolls (although I have to admit, I’ve tried duplicating those in my lifetime BUT there’s none that remotely come close to Lichee’s signature ones). If the chef was still alive I would consider hiring him just to do a private egg roll party for me.

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Over the years, I’ve made various oriental inspired meals. I have had some that were great and others that my family have gently suggested that sticking with take-out food would have been a safer bet.

Now that Steve and I cook for each other, there are less food critics to impress so a few nights ago I mixed up this “whatever I had in the fridge” sauce and went to town with this shrimp. If I do say so myself, I LOVED IT and I know you will too.

Mr. Wilson Lee would have been proud of my accomplishment, and in memory of him and those bomb diggity Lichee egg rolls, I made a very large portion for a table of two.

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HOISIN HONEY ORANGE SPICED SHRIMP

-1 package (16-20) black tiger shrimp, shelled, deveined, washed and dried well.
seasoned with:
-Cayenne pepper
-Garlic salt
-Pepper
-Spiced sesame oil
-Avocado oil

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Sauce for shrimp
-½ cup hoisin sauce
-1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
-2 teaspoons light soy sauce
-1 tablespoon manuka honey
-Zest from one orange
-2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice

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Garnish:
-Sesame seeds
-Green onion
-Coconut basmati rice ( see recipe below)

1) Season shrimp and set aside.
2) Mix all ingredients for sauce set aside.
3) Heat 1 tablespoon of avocado oil in a non stick pan or wok.
4) Stir fry shrimp in oil until no longer pink. I did it in two batches to avoid crowding. Remove first batch from pan and side aside while you stir fry the second batch.
5) Place all the cooked shrimp back in fry pan. Add sauce and cook 2 mins more, or until nicely glazed. Sprinkle with sesame seeds, top with green onion.
6) Serve with rice.

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COCONUT SCENTED BASMATI RICE

-1¼ cups of basmati rice
-2 (10 oz) cans of coconut milk
-pinch of kosher salt

1) In a medium size saucepan, combine rice, coconut milk and salt.
2) Bring to boil, cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes. Make sure all the liquid is absorbed and rice is tender. Serve warm.

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See ya next week!

debi @simplybeautifuleating
simplybeautifuleating.com

xx, Debi
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