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  • Entertaining Must-Haves: Winter Celebrations
    Posted: December 3, 2014 at 5:35 pm

    When the temps drop, it’s only natural to want to hibernate indoors. But don’t let the impending polar vortexes inhibit your inner entertaining spirit. Check out some of our favorite picks for throwing a party that’s sure to help beat those winter blues.

    Warm your guests up during the snow-filled months with this organic sipping chocolate that blends perfect parts of sweet and spicy for an extra kick. You can even give it an adult twist by spiking with vodka, tequila and/or your favorite liquorer. 

    If you’re a guest and it comes time to transporting your culinary creations in the chilly conditions, these insulated carrying totes provide an easy (and stylish) way to keep your dish warm. If your the one hosting, these are perfect to maintain that perfect temp for hours while making space in the oven for the next dish.

    These beautiful coasters pull double duty by adding just the right amount of sparkle to any tabletop while keeping it spotless. Who knew protecting your furniture could be so trendy?

    If you feel lost without your grill, then it’s time to take your culinary game to the next level. Investing in an sous-vide immersion circulator will not only impress your guests, but it will also allow you to cook that perfectly cooked piece of meat any time of year.

     

  • AK’s New Hors D’oeuvres & Paired Sips
    Posted: October 24, 2014 at 4:01 pm

    We all know the best part of a cocktail reception is the opportunity to sample small bites of everything, so we took the same concept and applied it to cocktails with new butlered hors d’oeuvre and paired sips. Not only do the flavors complement one another, but it encourages those of us with cocktail commitment issues to try something other than wine or beer. Check out some of our latest savory and sweet duos below!

     

    Root Vegetable Tacos and Cranberry Mojito Sippers

    Blue Corn shells filled with Chipotle Pumpkin “Guacamole.” Paired alongside Cranberry Mojito Sips w agave, mint, lime & candied cranberries

     

     Savory French Toast with Spiced White Sangria Sippers

    Battered croustades topped with smoked duck, sliced pear and a yuzu marmalade. Paired alongside Spiced White Sangria Sips with basil, basil, cinnamon & floating grapes.

     

    Butternut Squash Risotto Cakes with Spiked Cider

    Butternut squash and harvest spiced risotto dusted with almonds & mulling spices, stone fruit chutney.  Paired alongside Spiked Cider Sips with rum, apples & rosemary citrus syrup. 

     

    Spiced Treats

    Squash chocolate chip fritters dusted with cinnamon and sugar Paired alongside Spiked Chocolate Coffee Ships with a chai foam.

  • Featured Wedding: Tania & Rich
    Posted: October 7, 2014 at 2:24 pm

     

     

     

    While on the last day of their vacation, Tania and Rich to the famous Lake Bled in Slovenia. “We decided to walk the loop around the lake, while admiring the stunning snow-capped Julian Alps in the background and the 15th century church in the middle of the lake on Bled Island – a beacon of love, commitment and hope for the thousands of couples that travel from all over the world to say their vows there,” says Tania. “When we reached the halfway point of our walk around the lake, Rich pulled me off of the paved path and said he wanted to make our own path through the foliage to get to the water’s edge. Everything around us was so quiet and peaceful. We sat on the ground by the water and looked out onto the church, enjoying the special moment with each other. Finally, when we were ready to leave, Rich helped me up and I started walking back up to the path. Just as I realized he wasn’t behind me, I turned around and he was on one knee holding the most beautiful ring I’ve ever seen. He said he couldn’t wait to make me as happy as I’d made him over our 8 years together and then asked me to marry him. Of course, I said YES!”

    When it came to select their venue, the couple felt something special about Tappan Hill Mansion. “The beauty of the location of the venue, its unique charm, architecture, magnificent gardens, and breathtaking view simply took a hold of our hearts and we knew there was no other place that would ever come close in comparison,” says Tania. Then once we found out more about the history behind the food, each dish resembling a rare work of art and Abigail’s artistry in creating this remarkable cuisine carefully and impeccably, we knew that we were not only in excellent hands, but that Abigail Kirsch is truly in a class of her own, unmatched by anyone else.”

     

     

    “We wanted to have a colorful and striking, yet elegant spring theme and style,” says Tania. “We incorporated it by using pops of bright color among classic neutral backgrounds. We both worked very hard in accentuating our wedding décor with handmade additions that were personalized and spoke to our backgrounds and identities, both apart and together. We really wanted every guest to walk away with the feeling that they were a part of a very personal and intimate celebration of our love for each other.”

     

     

    Bride: Chantilly Crepes  

    Groom: Bistro Beef  

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    “Our wonderful event manager led us up to the bridal suite right after our ceremony where a spread of all of the hors d’oeuvres from cocktail hour and a bottle of champagne was waiting for us,” says Tania. “She said that we should share a moment alone with each other, as long as we needed, to just take in what had just happened and to relish those first few minutes with just each other before we went back downstairs to our guests. Looking back, we realize that it was truly the most special first moment that we shared with each other as a husband and wife, and we owe that to the thoughtful staff at Tappan Hill Mansion.”   

     

     

    “Every single guest has come up to us to say that our wedding was one of the most personal and memorable celebrations they have ever attended,” says Tania. “The impression left on us all, was one of a superior, un-matched quality and excellence from top to bottom and we truly could not have gotten better, anywhere! Our endless thanks goes to Abigail Kirsch and Tappan Hill Mansion for providing the perfect venue, the most superb food, and truly the most unforgettable experience we could have ever dreamed of.”

     

     

    floral design: Forever in Bloom | photography/videography: Hugh Riley/ Flanagan Productions | entertainment: Vali Entertainment | wedding dress: Jaehee Bridal (Allure Couture) | groom’s attire: Men’s Wearhouse (Calvin Klein) | bridesmaid dresses: Here Comes the Bridesmaid (Dessy) | jewelry: Jules Fine Jewelry | hair & makeup: Brianna Marte

  • Post-Summer S’mores!
    Posted: September 20, 2014 at 12:19 pm

    S’mores are often thought of as summer staple, but this ooey gooey dessert isn’t just for campfires anymore! Check out some of our favorite twists and tricks to help you get your fix of this classic sweet treat well through the cool weather season.

    Spiced: Start with chocolate graham crackers, your favorite mint chocolates and either toasted marshmallows or marshmallow spread.  Sandwich together and serve with a hot chocolate shooter sprinkled with cinnamon, nutmeg and chipotle for an extra kick.

    Nutty:  Start with gingerbread cookies.  Spread one side of each cookie with a chocolate hazelnut spread followed by a toasted marshmallow or marshmallow spread.  Sandwich together and finish off by dipping half in melted semi-sweet chocolate. Place dipped cookie on parchment paper, sprinkle with crushed toasted hazelnuts and allow the chocolate to set.

    Deconstructed:  Break it down! Start with toasted (or untoasted) marshmallow. Dip the top half of the marshmallow in melted caramel candy and allow to set. Once cooled, dip again in melted milk chocolate. Finish by dipping coated marshmallow into a bowl of crushed graham crackers and mini chocolate chips for some extra crunch.

    **Marshmallows can be toasted  indoors over a gas stove on a metal skewer or in a toaster oven on parchment coated in cooking spray.