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Minnesota Monthly’s Food & Wine Experience Coming March 1

Minnesota Monthly’s Food & Wine Experience Coming March 1

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The festival will feature some of the Twin Cities’ finest food and drink

Looks tempting, doesn't it?

Both veteran and rookie oenophiles and gastronomes will come together March 1-2 at Target Field to celebrate Minnesota Monthly’s 20th Annual Food and Wine Experience.

Sara Stoli, Marketing Director at Minnesota Monthly, explained to us that the festival grew partially out of a need for more food related events in the midst of the cold, Minneapolis winter season.

“When it started, there weren’t very many activities going on this time of year, but there were a lot of new restaurants popping up and our president at the time had an extreme passion for wine,” said Stoli. The vacuum was filled and the Food and Wine Experience was born.

This year’s festival features Washington State Wine as a prominent presence, and they will be taking over the whole Metropolitan Club during the event.

“This is their fourth or fifth year coming, and their footprint has grown a lot bigger. They’ve really committed themselves to the market and branding themselves strongly here,” Stoli added.

Be sure not to neglect the Best in Show Minnesota wines, including the Wobegon White and Hot Dish Red 2013 from Carlos Creek Winery.

If wine isn’t your forte, there are still plenty of exhibitors to visit. Be on the lookout for Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board showcasing a variety of fresh cheeses, a plethora of local breweries with craft beers on tap, and a new sake-tasting bar.

Stoli emphasizes the unique opportunity the experience is for visitors.

“Consumers to go to one place and sample so many different products. Then they can go to local markets and pick up some of the things they tried after coming away from here with a list of what they liked”.

For more information, and to reserve tickets, visit their website.

Minnesota Monthly’s Food & Wine Experience Coming March 1 - Recipes

We had the honor of painting with this lovely group of ladies for Sandy’s Bridal Shower near Raymond Washington! This afternoon was so much fun with everything from themed sangrias to a huge cozy fireplace! We painted the afternoon away creating the ‘winter berries’ painting with the group and stayed nice and warm next to the wood fire. Thanks you Brandi and Sandy for hosting your sip and paint event with Konnex. We loved all of the special touches including the drinks that matched the painting!

Konnex hosts private paint and sips across the Puget Sound and Western Washington. Choose your art project when you book. We paint with groups of all sizes visit our website booking page for more details and to get started!

See what your friends, family or coworkers can create when you paint together!

We hope the paint and sip made your bridal shower a success and we were honored to be a part of your special day! Thanks again Sandy and Brandi!

Konnex painted at Sequoia Assisted Living this week with this fun bunch of ladies! We even had one resident join the party and create! Thank you Stephanie for planning your paint and sip with Konnex.

We painted the Black Poppies painting for this work event. You get to choose your painting when you book a private party with Konnex. Our gallery has close to 80 art projects to choose from. Paint and sip parties are a great way to bring your friends, family or staff together for a fun and creative experience. Typical session last between 2 and 2.5 hours and feature step by step Artist guidance and instruction. Let us help you set up your next event Creatively, we bring the party to you! Konnex travels across the Puget Sound.

Contact us with your party idea or request.

Fall paint parties are here! We love fall in all of its glory, beautiful colors, crisp air, good smells, campfires, we could go on and on! We love Fall because the cooler weather brings people together so lets get cozy and create. Check out our new and returning paintings and projects for fall! Choose any of these paintings from our gallery when you host or book a private paint party! Pull out the pumpkins and Pinot, we’ll bring the paint!

Fall and seasonal paintings choose your paint and sip artwork when you host a private party.

Remember Konnex is a traveling paint and sip studio so you can have your party at your home, office, or any location near you!

We are excited to announce that Konnex is now partnered with Nisqually Valley Brewing for Sip and Paint events! Join us to paint every second Thursday of the month, we call it Thirsty Thursday! The good news is that tickets are JUST $35 and include your first glass of wine or draft beer! We are so excited for this brewery to open in Yelm Washington and have amazing local beers crafted right here! While inside the brewery and often during events you can see them brewing the beer right in front of you and it did we mention that it smells amazing…Come and create with us every Second Thursday at Nisqually valley Brewing and get creative over craft brews (or wine)

The painting project will change each month! View our full calendar of events here to see what’s coming up next! Seating is limited for Nisqually Valley Brewing sip and paint events so be sure to pre-register to save your seats! Also if you want to host your own private paint party at the brewery that is an option and you will get to choose which canvas painting you will create with your group! Contact us to find out if your date is available to paint at the brewery in Yelm washington.

Our last event was so much fun here and we can’t wait for our next sip and paint at the Nisqually Valley Brewing Company taphouse in August! Join us to paint the ‘Pastel Dragonfly’ only a few seats left for this paint in sip, follow the link for tickets or email us if you have any issues or need help registering. The paint and sip session will be guided by a Konnex Artist and you will get step by step guidance and instruction throughout, hands on help too if needed! Let’s paint in Yelm at the Nisqually Valley Brewing Company!

paint this at the brewery in yelm in August

Tickets for AUGUST sip and paint –

Check out the Nisqually Valley Brewing Company here-


Konnex paint and sip sip and paint event at the brewery Paint at Nisqually valley brewing

Konnex offers public and private painting classes in Yelm Washington! Check out our paint and sip events calendar to find a public event near you or contact us to host your own paint and sip party! We travel around the Puget Sound to paint with people in their homes, offices, workplaces, community centers, or local bars and restaurants. If you have been wanting to paint and sip with your friends, family or co-workers call us or email us to get started planning your own painting party. Set up is easy and we help you every step of the way all you need is a date and time picked out so we can check our painting events calendar and match you with a paint and sip Artist! You also get to choose the painting project your group will create at your party…our gallery is always changing and has so many fun canvas paintings to choose from! If you join us at a public event food and beverage will be available through the venue, if you host a home or private party you are free to provide or have your guests bring whatever food and beverage you wish!

Paint parties are all about relaxing and having fun while your Konnex Artist helps you connect with your inner creativity! We love painting with our clients and their friends and can’t wait to see what you create at your event. Paint and sip parties are great for groups and keep everyone engaged and entertained for 2 to 3 hours. Our parties are relaxed and include short breaks when the paintings need to dry etc.

The easiest way to get on the Konnex calendar is to fill out our paint party booking form here-

As always feel free to call or email us if you have any questions about hosting your own paint and sip party we would love to help! Paint soon! – The Konnex Artists

paint with your whole family with Konnex painting parties, kids and teens too painting parties in Tacoma, Olympia, Lacey washington join us every second thursday at Nisqually valley brewing to paint

Konnex got to sip and paint ton Bainbridge Island this week! We traveled to Heyday Farms to paint with an amazing team for their team retreat! This private paint party was so much fun and so relaxing in the beautiful atmosphere of the farm. Not to mention that Bainbridge Island is also beautiful and we love

d driving around exploring the attractions on the Island after! The team chose to paint the ‘bubble whale’ painting for their paint party and had fun mixing colors, creating shapes and patterns and creating contrast in their paintings. Our traveling art studio brings the supplies and then we show you step by step how to create the chosen painting on canvas. Step by step artist instruction and demonstration is included in every paint and sip party. The farm manager was amazing and event brought us fresh milk and granola during the break! If you want to host a paint and sip party on Bainbridge Island, Gig harbor, Bremerton or Silverdale or a surrounding area contact us and we will help you set up your party and get your private sip and paint party on the Konnex calendar!

Some common events that sip and paint parties are great for are: Bachelorette parties, bridal showers, girls night out/in, birthdays, celebrations, family gatherings, office parties, coworker outings, team building, corporate, client appreciation, fundraiser paint parties, kids parties and more, we are always looking for new party ideas to paint for so connect with us and let us know what you would like to paint for! We work one on one with each individual host to plan your party and answer any questions you have along the way! We can’t wait to paint with you anywhere on the Puget Sound.

private paint and sip parties that travel to you team retreat paint party at heyday farms, bainbridge island

Paint and sip studio in Bainbridge Island Wa, paint studio in gig harbor wa, Paint in Bremerton, paint and sip in bremerton, traveling art studio. Sip and paint on Bainbridge Island

painting studio in gig harbor washington gig harbor paint and sip paint on bainbridge island with konnex sip and paint on bainbridge island washington thanks heyday farms for the fresh milk and granola!

Check out Heyday farms here –

Ready to book your paint and sip party?! Do it here –

Konnex had the pleasure of helping the PRCA Gallery in Morris Minnesota raise money for the gallery with a Paint and sip fundraiser! We traveled to Morris Minnesota to paint with supporters of the gallery while they created for their cause. We had so much fun showing how to create the ‘Field of Daisies’ painting just in time for spring. Have a fundraiser coming up? Looking for new ways to raise money for your cause? Try paint and sip and give your supporters a way to have fun and support your organization at the same time. We paint with groups of all sizes and travel throughout Central Minnesota and the Puget Sound in Washington state. Konnex paint and sip fundraisers are available to 501 organizations, contact us by email today for more information or to start setting up your paint and sip fundraiser with Konnex (connects)

Let us connect you creatively!

Fundraiser for PRCA Morris MN Paint and sip in Minnesota with Konnex

Coming March 11th! Paint and sip with us at Smash Deli in Yelm, Washington!

This paint party is open to the public. The afternoon will be filled with fun and creativity, grab your tickets and get ready to discover your creative side with Konnex. Our Artists will guide the session with step by step demonstrations and tips, we also will help you with your painting if desired. This art class is for anyone who wants to join, even if you have never painted before! No painting experience is required.

Come experience a relaxing hands on enviroment where you will get to test out new techniques, brush strokes and color mixing as you create your very own painting on canvas. All of the art supplies are provided. Food and beverage are available from the deli through the entire event at additional charge. Come and try there amazing sandwiches! They also offer beer and espresso drinks!

We can’t wait to make this whimsical painting, feel free to email us with any questions or if you need help registering or have special requests for your group. Visit our contact page here to get a hold of us –

What an amazing community lodge we painted at for this private sip and paint party! A big thank you to Jessica for hosting and all of your friends for attending. We spent the night creating these fun winter paintings! Full of texture and snow just in time for cold weather. We finished off these creations with little red birds. Host your own paint and sip party at your home or location and get creative with your friends and family, co workers or kids! Konnex is based in Yelm but we TRAVEL all around the puget sound to paint! Contact us to start setting up your very own paint party!

Konnex traveled to Olympia for this fun co-workers gathering! We painted the ‘Bubble Whale’ painting as a group. This is a brand new painting in the Konnex gallery and is now available to select for your own private paint party. It will also be the featured painting for our monthly Sip and Paint at Smash Deli in Yelm. We paint with groups for all sorts of occasions but Office/work parties can be especially fun to experience your co-workers in a new environment! Also being able to flex those creative muscles without any consequence if a mistake can renew creativity throughout the group! We offer standard parties for companies, client appreciation events as well as specific team building events. As always Konnex strives to work one on one with every group/organizer to create a unique event tailored to your specific needs as a company or organization. Contact us today to let us know your ideas and/or needs for your next event. We travel throughout the puget sound area including Tacoma, Lakewood, Puyallup, Enumclaw, Eatonville, Roy, Yelm, Tenino, Lacey, Olympia and Shelton. If you don’t see your area listed reach out to us and let us know where you are, we will do our best to accommodate your event. Of course a special thanks to Bobbi for organizing this party and Jolene for hosting again! Paint with you again soon!

Questions that I was asked for the award nomination

  • My motto at Travel With A Plan is to encourage and help others, “Travel with a plan. Not regret.” In order to do so, I share years worth of practical family travel tips, reviews, and itineraries that work for families. I like to think that at Travel With A Plan, I help take the work out of travel planning so that you don’t have to.
  • I decided to start a travel blog because I did not want the countless hours of research and planning that I put into our own personal family vacations to go to waste. When I look back on our travels and realize that an itinerary, travel product, or travel tip truly helped make for a fun and hassle-free trip, I wanted a way to share those successes with others (so that you too can go on to make the same amazing memories)! I decided to do so in the form of starting a travel blog!
  • I love spending time with my family and friends, as well as summer weekends at our lake cabin. A strong faith and relationship with God keeps me grounded and helps me to keep the important things in life in perspective. I also rely on the bookends of my day coffee in the morning and a glass of wine at night.
  • Fall is by far my favorite season! I love the fall foliage and chilly air! Fall calls for dressing in fun layers, sitting around campfires, raking leaves, and celebrating both Halloween and Thanksgiving…two of my favorites!
  • I currently love living in Minnesota for its proximity to both of my husband and I’s family. I also love the 4 distinct season that Minnesota has for there are many varied activities to do together while raising a family. Eventually, I would love to live in a warmer U.S. state such as California or Florida.
  • My favorite thing about blogging is realizing what fuels my passion for creating content. Reflecting on the amazing benefits of traveling together as a family (and wanting to share those with others) is a passion and drive that I just can’t contain.
  • The biggest challenge in maintaining a successful blog for me has been balancing my love for blogging with my other full-time job. I am so dedicated and passionate about Travel With A Plan, but I also work full-time outside of the home. It can be difficult finding the time to stay engaged with social media and to write as many posts as I would like.
  • Definitely beach! The sight, sound, and smell of the ocean gives me an overwhelming sense of calm. I love the complexity of the ocean as well as the amazing sea animals that call it home. My favorite day is definitely a ‘beach day’!
  • I pride myself in providing ‘practical’ family travel tips and in detailing actual itineraries that I have tried on my own. I hope to pass on these tips for those that many not have the time or the know-how to plan these types of things on their own.
  • My favorite posts that I have created are my Disney World itinerary posts. A Disney vacation has so many variables, and there is literally so much information online to dig through if you are looking for tips and advice. I feel that my Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, and Epcot itinerary posts provide all of the information that anyone would ever need in terms of touring the parks in one day.
  • That’s a hard one. I’m definitely a bit of both. I enjoy traveling and meeting new people as well as spending time socializing away from home. I, however, am recharged when spending time by myself. My ‘alone time’ is absolutely essential to my mental health and overall happiness. I would also rather spend time in a small group of friends, versus a large group of people.

The speakers you need to see at ChefConnect: Seattle

Are you ready for ChefConnect: Seattle? The ACF’s first conference of 2020 is coming up quickly! Join us and a few hundred of your fellow chefs at the Doubletree by Hilton at the Seattle Airport March 1st through 3rd for a great weekend of networking and educational sessions. You can register at the standard rate until February 3, 2020. To hold you over until the event, here’s a preview of some of the great speakers you’ll see in Seattle. You can view the full schedule here.

Jonathan Waxman

Jonathan Waxman is a native Californian whose family taught him an appreciation for food arts from an early age. While selling Ferraris in Berkeley, his employer introduced Jonathan to Tante Marie’s Cooking School in San Francisco. This led to his enrollment in the La Varenne School in Paris where he mastered classic French cooking technique and received the Grand Diplôme.

Jonathan returned to the United States to work at Domaine Chandon in Napa Valley and later with Alice Waters at Chez Panisse. In 1979 he became Executive Chef at Michael’s in Santa Monica. There he developed his version of California cuisine while nurturing future chefs Mark Peel, Gordon Naccarato, Nancy Silverton, Roy Yamaguchi, Kazuto Matsusaka, and many others.

In 1983 Jonathan moved to New York. A year later he opened the celebrated Jams on East 79th Street with business partner Melvyn Master. Jams was followed by Bud’s, Jams London, Table 29 in Napa Valley, and Washington Park in New York.
Today, Jonathan is chef and owner of Barbuto in Manhattan’s West Village and Jams in 1 Hotel Central Park. In 2014, he opened his Nashville restaurant, Adele’s, and is a founding partner of Nashville’s Music City Food + Wine Festival.

Jonathan Waxman is the 2016 James Beard Award winner for “Best Chef, New York City”. He was a judge on Bravo’s Recipe for Deception and has appeared on two seasons of Top Chef Masters. He is the author of cookbooks, A Great American Cook and Italian, My Way. Jonathan currently lives in Manhattan with his wife and three children.

Ed Cotton

Chef Ed Cotton got his start in restaurants at the age of 15, working for celebrity Chef Todd English at restaurants Figs, and Olives in Boston. After graduating from the Culinary Institute of America in 1998, Chef Cotton moved to Las Vegas to rejoin chef Todd English to help open the newest location of Olives in the Bellagio Hotel. After his year long stint in Las Vegas Chef Cotton returned back to his hometown of Boston to work as Executive Sous Chef under acclaimed Chef Barbara Lynch at her award-winning restaurant, No. 9 Park, in Beacon Hill.

In 2003, Chef Cotton relocated to New York City to work under the Michelin starred chef, Daniel Boulud at db Bistro Moderne and at Restaurant

Daniel. He spent more than 5 years with the Dinex group, working as Executive Sous Chef and assisting in the concept creation for the award-winning Bar Boulud in Manhattan.

Chef Cotton later joined Chef Laurent Tourondel with his newest BLT restaurant as Chef de Cuisine at BLT Market located at The Ritz Carlton Central Park. During his time while working at BLT Market, Cotton joined forces with Iron Chef Cat Cora, as her sous chef on the Food Network’s “Iron Chef America.” Chef Cotton also went on to compete on season 7 of Bravo’s Top Chef in Washington DC, cooking his way to the finals in Singapore, where he earned runner-up.

Cotton continued his career by joining Chef David Burke at Fishtail by David Burke & at his flagship restaurant David Burke Townhouse, where he worked for a number of years serving as his Executive Chef for his popular eateries. In November 2013 Chef Ed joined wood burning centric restaurant Sotto13 located in Manhattan’s historic West Village as Executive Chef, bringing innovative interpretations to classic Italian dishes specializing in hand-crafted pastas, charcuterie and use of a wood burning oven. While at Sotto13 he also competed and when toe to toe with mega chef Bobby Flay on Beat Bobby Flay ultimately beating Bobby Flay.

In the summer 2017, Cotton started his own consulting company Ed Cotton Consulting. With his consulting company he has worked on recipe development for many businesses, restaurants, dinning concepts, magazines and recipes for online content. He was tapped once again by old boss Laurent Tourondel to take over the lead position as his Corporate Executive Chef for LTH his hospitality group where Cotton currently oversees the culinary program for over 12 restaurants globally.

Kirsten Shockey

Kirsten K. Shockey is the co-author of Fermented Vegetables , Fiery Ferments, and forthcoming Miso, Tempeh, Natto and other Tasty Ferments books that came from her desires to both help people eat in new ways, both for the health of themselves and the planet and push these culinary arts to new flavors. She got her start in fermenting foods twenty years ago on a 40-acre hillside smallholding which grew into their organic food company. When she and her husband realized their passion was for the process, they chose to focus on teaching fermentation arts to others instead. She travels worldwide helping people to make, enjoy and connect with their food. You can find stories of a life fueled by fermented foods on Instagram or on the web at .

Joel Gamoran

Best known as the host for A&E’s hit series “Scraps,” Joel Gamoran has become one of the nation’s most well-known sustainability-focused chefs. In addition to his television show, Joel is the National Chef for Sur La Table and makes monthly appearances on NBC’s Today Show. As the author of Cooking Scrappy. (Harper Collins, 2018) with a passion for cooking with ingredients that are typically tossed, Joel has shown students, viewers and readers around the world how to turn food scraps into delicious meals. Joel is a graduate of both the Culinary Institute of America, and the Culinary Institute of Florence. Joel and his wife Angiolina live in stunning Seattle, WA with their baby Jonah.

Dina Altieri

Chef Dina Altieri graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in 1991 with an associate degree in occupational studies. After working various line and kitchen leadership positions in restaurants and catering operations, she began her career as a chef educator. Her work in higher education spans coast to coast as department chair at Le Cordon Bleu programs in Pasadena and Chicago, associate dean at New England Culinary Institute in Vermont and dean of the School of Culinary Arts at Kendall College in Chicago.

Chef Altieri is certified with the American Culinary Federation as an Executive Chef and Culinary Educator and with the American Hotel and Lodging Educational Institute as a Hospitality Educator. She has been a master class presenter at the Center for the Advancement of Culinary Education (CAFÉ) and the University of New Mexico’s Mentoring conference and featured in the books A Woman’s Place is in the Kitchen and In Mother’s Kitchen, by Ann Cooper.

Chef Altieri coached Kendall College’s Culinary Knowledge Bowl team winning multiple regional and national championships with her students. She was named national Chef Educator of the Year in 2011 and earned the Cutting Edge Award in 2015 from the American Culinary Federation. She also holds a bachelor degree in liberal arts from Johnson State College and a master’s degree from Walden University in Higher Education with a concentration in College Teaching and Learning. She joined the staff at Center on Halsted in 2017 as the Director of Culinary Arts. In this role, she manages a culinary arts and job readiness program called Silver Fork, which provides Chicago residents the culinary skills and knowledge to obtain and retain long-term, living wage employment in the hospitality industry.

ChefConnect: Seattle is coming March 1-3! If you’re a chef exploring new ideas and flavors, a student looking to gain experience or a foodservice professional keeping abreast of the latest and greatest, we’ve got educational and networking opportunities for you. Register before Feb. 3 to save up to 40%!

Raffaldini June Newsletter

Our 2014 Montepulciano Riserva will be sold out before the end of June. This North Carolina Fine Wine Society Best in Show winner received an 89 point score from Italian wine writer, James Suckling, formerly of Wine Spectator. James calls it "A medium fruity wine with firm tannins and a juicy undertone. Tangy acidity and a clean finish. Has the earthy, fruity character of Montepulciano." The 2014 Montepulciano Riserva will sell out approximately six weeks prior to the release of the 2015 Montepulciano Riserva.

Sunday, June 18: Father's Day Brunch

Celebrate tuo padre with a buffet brunch overlooking Raffaldini Vineyards! Bring the entire family and your camera for a one-of-a-kind photo surrounded by our breathtaking rolling vineyards. Enjoy a casual game of bocce or relax with some live music from Justin Nelson. Reservations include buffet brunch, two glasses of Raffaldini wine, and a Riedel crystal wine glass.

Our mailing address is:
450 Groce Road, Ronda, NC 28670

A Girl Scout Cookie Sugar Rush: Part One

Professionally, I work for Outword Magazine in Sacramento as a graphic designer, photographer, editor, and occasional writer. In their latest issue I wrote two recipes, one of which I will share with you today: Lemon “Lemonades” Cheesecake with Raspberry Sauce.

I know you might be thinking, “I am on the right website? I thought this was a health website. I thought she was gluten free…” Well, sometimes it’s OK to eat the cookies or the cheesecake, as long as you don’t eat all of it. I’m still 90% gluten-free, and still rarely eat desserts, but that doesn’t mean I don’t bake anymore or share treats from time to time. I was pretty hardcore for a few years, but I missed baking and creating crazy treat combinations, so the last few years I’ve come back to it. I’ve also managed to maintain my size, so weight gain is not a big problem anymore. My husband (who has the best metabolism of anyone I have ever met) does a great job of eating everything I make, so it’s not laying around tempting me. I also know the work I have to do at the gym to burn it off, and I would rather not spend more time at the gym than I already do.

PS: You can buy Girl Scout Cookies until March 28th, so please do! Just go to and enter your zip code. You can also text COOKIES to 59618 (message and data rates may apply. Text STOPGS for STOP, HELPGS for help).

Lemon “Lemonades” Cheesecake with Raspberry Sauce
Crust Ingredients:
1/2 sleeve Girl Scout Shortbread/Trefoils
1/2 sleeve Girl Scout Lemonades Cookies
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
Zest of 1 Lemon
2 Tsp lemon juice
1/2 stick of butter, melted

Filling Ingredients:
2 pkg. (8 oz. each) Cream Cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
1/2 sleeve Girl Scout Lemonades Cookies

Raspberry Sauce Ingredients:
2 cups fresh or frozen raspberries
1-3/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon water, divided
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch

Crust Directions: Preheat oven to 325°F (300°F for convection ovens). Crush the two varieties of Girl Scout Cookies in a plastic bag with rolling pin or in a food processor, then transfer the crumbs to a bowl. Add the flour, zest, lemon juice, and then the melted butter and stir until mixture comes together to form a dough. Press the dough into the bottom of an 8-inch springform pan and set aside.

Filling Directions: Beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla with mixer until blended. Add eggs beat just until blended. Pour into crust. Bake 40 min. or until center is almost set. Cool. Refrigerate 3 hours.

Raspberry Sauce Directions:
In a saucepan, combine the raspberries, 1-3/4 cups water and sugar. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Mash raspberry mixture and strain through a fine sieve into a 2-cup measuring cup discard seeds. Add water if needed to make 2 cups puree. Return to the saucepan. Combine cornstarch and remaining water until smooth gradually stir into raspberry mixture. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Cook and stir 1 minute longer. Remove from the heat cool completely. Spread over cooled cheesecake, and if desired, decorate cheesecake with Girl Scout Lemonade Cookies!

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48 comments on sav’h

I love the pictures. And I know what you mean about the 24/7 cities. I grew up in Las Vegas and, wow, was it a shock when I moved first to Utah and then to Austin, TX. It’s unbelievable to me that things close at eight. Or for the weekend. What in the world??

Glad you enjoyed your trip! And yes, the weather is almost always like that here. We never experience NYC weather along the coastal regions of NC, SC, and GA. It’s barely been blow freezing here in Wilmington this winter. I personally enjoy the cold, as it usually means no allergens. The trees are starting to bloom here, and so are my nasal passages. Ugh!

I’m greatly enjoying the pictures! Keep ’em coming. :)

Yay, you’re back! Did you know that I missed you? I did. Anywho, I made the indian dish and B thanks you immensely. Also, I love the fact that your first three posters names start with “J”.

I’m glad you enjoyed the South, now you just need to come West and take a jaunt to Houston. I’d give you a personalized tour!

I’m not really sure who the creator of this site is but… can I say I love you. I was just surfing the web as any college student would and came across your wonderful site. From your marvelous photos, exquisite food recipes (which I have yet to tackle), and your humorous blogs, I can absolutely say that I’m Smitten with your Kitchen (site)!!

I just have to say I love your blog! lol

My hubbo and I took a debris-free vacay last New Year’s (2005-06) from our home on the MS Gulf Coast. It was an impulse trip based on a spot I’d seen about the Mansion on Forsyth Park, where we ended up staying. So needless to say, I’m thrilled to see that you stayed there too. When you called for recs, I almost posted about it but figured at such a late date, you’d already booked your digs and what would be the point in gloating about somewhere you’d not get to experience, but now I can say with a clear conscience, MAN that place is awesome. I’d totally go back and just remain within its four walls for the entire trip. I came home and redecorated my bedroom to resemble our room there. I’m not nuts, I promise. Just surrounded by total destruction on every side of me after the storm and the beauty of that hotel soothed my soul. I just wanted to drink it up every single day. My bedroom was a white box but no longer. I just wish I could buy one of those beds. My homemade version is no comparison. Weren’t they gorgeous?

Also loved Mrs. Wilkes’. And wandering around the city. We took a totally hokey ghost tour one night, which was fun but cheesily so. We also liked Gryphon Tea Room where we had hot scones and tea. Even the hubbo liked it and it’s totally not his thing.

I enjoyed your photos very much. We have pictures of that same fountain in Forsyth Park, but mine don’t even compare to yours. I hope I can learn how to wield my new SLR so effectively. Speaking of which, did you venture into the coffee shop at the end of the park called the Sentient Bean? I went there for coffee a couple of mornings before the hubbo awoke because it was way cheaper than the hotel and was also local. Cool SCAD student hangout. I should have posted about it, but I just remembered it. Hope I’m not gloating pointlessly.

We did not go to Charleston, but loved Savannah so much. The relaxing trip must have been healing because about 9 months later my daughter was born! Ha!

Hi, I’m from Singapore, came across your blog by recommendation of a friend. I was in Savannah on holiday last year and liked the quaint little town. Love your photos! Wish I could cook and take photos like you! Am currently looking for some good recipes for pistachios as I have a big bag of them that needs to be used. Do you know of any recipes you’d recommend? Thanks in advance! :)

So nice to have a respite from NYC — I was there last weekend, and the cold/wind were bitter in a way that rural Rhode Island is not (though “technically” it was colder here). Have not been to Savannah and Charleston for many years, since college days. Nice to revisit through your photos and restaurant notes.

Thank you! Glad you had a nice time, I’m book marking some of these places for a future trip (who knows when, someday maybe).

Hi, I’ve read your blog(s) for quite a while now, but I don’t know if I ever commented. Anyway, I was born in Charleston and lived my whole life in SC until I moved to NC almost 2 years ago. I’m always amused when people discover our blue laws and cultural standards with stores being closed on Sunday and all. I guess I’m just so used to it. Liquor stores in SC (always labeled ABC stores with 3 red dots on the building) close at 7 pm every day, and they aren’t open at all on Sunday. You can’t even buy beer or wine at the grocery store on Sundays. Thus, when I moved to NC, I was thrilled that liquor stores stay open until 9 and you can buy beer and wine on Sundays after noon! In SC, on Sunday they even have to rope off parts of Wal-Marts and Targets to keep the things you are allowed to sell before noon separate from the rest of the merchandise. I think it’s all very silly to hang on to such traditions from so long ago, so I’m sorry you had to miss out on parts of two beautiful cities because of it. I’m glad you enjoyed our weather, though! It was 31 here this morning, and I shivered during the whole drive to work!

I grew up in SC, my sister lives in Charleston, and my best friend lives in Savannah. I, unfortunately, moved North to the horrid winters. The last photo of an azalea flower on the pavement makes me want to cry. March has always been spring and flowers for me, yet I sit inside with snow covering the ground outside. Sob.

Hey – welcome back. You were missed. Am ambivalent about your reaction to Elizabeth’s – I totally agree but sorry you wasted a meal. “Hate to say I” – you know the rest!! Not sure who gives it the rave reviews. Glad you liked Mrs. Wilkes – quite a trip, isn’t it? Photos look good as usual. Am planning on a new DSLR and the wife says a new camera won’t get you photos like that – she has something you cannot buy!! Damn!!

I’m so glad you took my suggestion and made it out to Mrs. Wilkes!! I had the same gut reaction as you when I saw the line of tourists, but boy was I happy once I sat down and smelled all the great home cookin’ coming my way. :-) It was definitely a highlight of my trip to Savannah a few years back, and part of the fun is all the people you meet at your table. I actually had the daughter of the original Mrs. Wilkes sit at my table!

Lovely to see you had such a great time. And I’m so, so glad you tried Peninula Grill. And I remember the pain of odd business hours in the south — my favorite restaurant in Atlanta was only open for lunch 4 days a week, so even though I lived down the street I almost never made it.

However, in my opinion? There is absolutely NO NEED to beat yourself up for missing Tybee Island. While some of the barrier islands are amazingly beautiful — like Cumberland, with the turtles, or Jekyll, which is very empty and has lots of weird crumbling-down buildings just off the beach in some spots (both of which are also a couple of hours further down the coast than Savannah) — Tybee is not one of those. It’s more of a common tourist destination, dirtier, and more crowded than the other islands. So cross that regret off your list!

Definitely good eats in the Low Country. I remember standing at a table near Charleston and eating freshly grilled oysters as quickly as the grill-masters mate could shuck them.

thank you for the virtual vacation in these glorious pictures, and your thoughts on charleston and savannah… it’s been ages since i’ve been to savannah and never to charleston, and they are both so high on my list! thanks for the reviews + recommendations too. hope you’re not too cold up there…

Your pictures look absolutely stunning! Living just a few hours from both historic Savannah and Charleston, your post makes me want to put things aside, and just make a weekend/day trip to these wonderful places!

Wait, What, Huh? I thought you went to Mexico?

Sounds like you had a great time. As for everything being closed on Sunday, welcome to small-town-South. We recently went to lovely Oxford, MS, on a Sunday afternoon and found only one of their many wonderful restaurants open. It’s just our way, apparently. That is, unless you want to eat at Chili’s or Taco Bell. And, if you’re like us, you’d just as soon pass on those and eat junk out of your own pantry.

As a new follower of your blog, thank you…for the wonderful articles, the great recipes and, of course, your wonderful pics. Nice holiday, eh?

Janssen — Indeed. Not exactly a service-oriented city, flooded with conveniences. Ah, well. Next time I’ll avoid the South on a Sunday.

Jenifer — Aww, I’m glad you liked the dish! Now I did go to Ft. Worth one for a wedding. Everything was so big! An onion ring the size of my head, I swear. But, I’d love to get to Austin, one day, perhaps.

Rachel — Oh sweet! Someone else in love with that place. The last time I loved a hotel that much, it was in New Orleans in May of 2005, in a Kimpton hotel I now realize has closed or been sold. That makes me very sad.

Ping — Haven’t cooked much with pistachios, but you can never go wrong with a brittle, toffee or spiced nut mixture. March 8, 2007

Tammi — Definitely good for a future weekend trip. We try to get to random cities sometimes, to hold us over for the vacations that we really, really want to take but are huge financial hits. Like Russia. Argentina. Cyprus. Sigh. We’re thinking about hitting the Pacific northwest this summer now, driving down from Portland through Seattle to Cali. Though I’d still rather go to St. Petersburg… I digress!

Erin — I think it must take a splendid amount of patience to deal with such red tape. As someone who’s day of rest is NOT on Sunday and who would not dare expect the rest of the world to rest on the same day, I find it outrageous. I’m always surprised it’s not questioned more often, and has just become accepted as fact. NYC just recently (2 years ago, I think) allowed stores to sell booze on Sunday, so nobody has an excuse to show up empty-handed to a Sunday dinner party now!

Larry — We had not intended in any way to go to Elizabeth’s. But when we reviewed our dinner options that were actually open on that night, it was thin pickings. Tapas, Italian and some sort of Asian fusion (I think) sounded like stuff we can get in Manhattan any day. I wanted something more original, and I’d seen a good mention of Elizabeth’s on Chowhound. Ah well. At least 50% of us liked our meal.

Abbey — Thanks for the suggestion. I lost track of who suggested what, so didn’t know who to thank. It really was adorable, and so humble despite the crowd. The line, btw, moved very quickly.

Amelia — Good to know about Tybee. Ever the New Yorker, I was confused that there was NO WAY to get there without a car. No shuttle? No ferry? I always forget, too, that in the rest of the country, everyone owns a car. Among our 12 closest friends, there is not a single car.

kevin — I was bummed we didn’t make it to Hominy Grill! We were going to go for our last lunch, but I just couldn’t take another big meal that day. I needed salad, fresh fruit. We ended up at Fast & Furious (Guilard et Maliclet? I forget the French name). The coffee was fantastic (though can be easily repeated at home), the food, oookay. Did the trick though.

Jocelyn — Nope, Savannah and Charleston for a long weekend. (We’d completely forgotten about Steve’s thing when we booked it. D’oh!) We’re going to Playa Del Carmen in April. I just couldn’t hold off that long to see the sun.

Jennifer — Yeah, we shoulda known. Though I do find Paula Deen charming, I had no interest in going to her restaurant. But, with so few options, we tried to check it out on Sunday. Line around the block, only open until 4, no reservations and a buffet to boot! I couldn’t do it. Maybe next time. )

If you ever get to go to Tybee (and you really should). Stay at the Savannah Beach Inn. Innkeeper Anne and her husband are awesome. I suggest the Marshall Suite. It’s at the top of the house, and it’s relaxing & fabulous. Eat at the Sundae Cafe. (Anne knows where it is). Don’t be fooled by how it looks. Last time we went (sadly, last April), it was in a strip and was obviously a renovated quickee-mart. The tuna steak with the smoothest, most velvety ginger and cinnamoned sweet potato spectacularness made me dance in my seat.
Vinnie A Go-Go’s is great for pizza in Savannah. Paula Deen’s is vastly overrated. Why oh why did we wait an hour?! I chastised myself for the rest of the trip for buying into the hype. The Pink House was delectable. There was a decent quick sandwich joint above market square, too….

Thanks for the blog. It’s inspiring. I can’t wait to get back to Savannah.

Glad the trip went well. It sounds beautiful. I would like to make it up there sometime. I think our next trip will be back to St. Augustine, which this post reminds me of. Alot of tourists, but also alot of great stuff if you don’t get stuck with them. Plus some really pretty architecture, and the ocean. But I may be a little biased, because that is where we got married.

If you ever make it to St. Augustine I have a couple of places for you to try (like a $7 crab cake meal that had the best cakes I have EVER tasted!).

Dining Hall Cranberry Wild Rice Meatball Recipe

Cranberry Wild Rice Meatballs with Lingonberry Preserves

A Swedish-style meatball with wild rice and dried cranberries simmered in a zesty cream sauce and served with lingonberry preserves.

Meatballs: Cream Sauce:
1 pound ground beef 2 cups chicken broth
1/3 cup cooked wild rice 1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup dried cranberries 1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/4 cup minced onion 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt 3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon allspice 1/4 cup water
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg Garnish:
1/8 teaspoon curry powder Lingonberry Preserves
3/4 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup water
1 egg

To prepare meatballs, combine all ingredients mix well. Shape into 1 1/2 to 2-inch balls place in shallow baking pan. Bake in 325 degree oven for 30 minutes.

While meatballs are baking, make Cream Sauce. In saucepan, combine chicken broth and whipping cream over low heat, heat just to simmer. Stir in allspice and nutmeg. In small bowl, combine corn starch and water stir until smooth. Stir into cream mixture simmer.

After 30 minutes, remove meatballs from oven transfer to 13࡯-inch baking pan or oven-proof serving dish. Pour cream sauce over meatballs cover with foil. Return meatballs to oven and continue baking for 30 minutes. Serve with Lingonberry Preserves. 4 servings

GalleyMatch Book Clubs Recommend

GalleyMatch book clubs preview advance reading copies (ARCs, also known as galleys) from a variety of publishers. Below you’ll find the titles book clubs have recently enjoyed reading and discussing along with highlights of their discussion and selected menus from their meetings.

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The Sensational Seven Book Club and the Fabulous Six Book Clubs of Appleton, Wisconsin
Get Woke Book Club of New Prague Minnesota, Mountain Meadows Book Club of Renton, Washington, and Pittsburgh Chick LIt Book Club of Pennsylvania
SPIN: A Novel Based on a (Mostly) True Story by Peter Zheutlin ( Pegasus, 6/21)
Ride away on a 'round-the-world adventure of a lifetime—with only a change of clothes and a pearl-handled revolver—in this transcendent novel inspired by the life of Annie Londonderry

The Sensational Seven Book Club: “What a story Peter Zheutlin told, what a fascinating woman. and such a beautifully written story! We had an animated conversation like no other, with many opinions about Annie’s choices and how her decisions shaped the person she became."
"We loved the beautiful cover of Annie on her ‘wheel’ and the simple, perfect title. seeing the cover and the title made us anxious to dive into SPIN! The book prompted such great discussion. At the young age of 23, she made the bold decision to take up the daunting challenge of biking around the world. How many of us would ever even think to attempt this feat? The author based the book on ‘a mostly true story,' but what a story he told through a letter from Annie to her granddaughter, Mary. What a creative take on Miss Londonderry’s tale! He authored the book in such a beautiful way that you could often visualize the sights and scenes as Annie navigated her way across the world on her bicycle.
"We agreed that although Annie is a champion and a woman truly ahead of her time, it was difficult to approve of her choice to leave her husband and three young children for 15 months. One of the reading guide questions prompted a long discussion about Annie’s character: She was charismatic, driven, courageous, and adventurous. Could we look beyond so many of the choices she made and deem her a ‘likable’ character? Peter Zheutlin’s great-grandaunt was a character not soon forgotten by any of us and one who provided our book club with an animated conversation like no other!

"Menu: "We focused on Annie’s ancestry with Jewish-themed snacks and drinks. We spent an evening around a bonfire drinking Manischewitz wine and noshing on snacks with Za’atar seasoning. Delicious!"

Fabulous Six Book Club: “Written from the viewpoint of Annie, in a letter to her granddaughter, was the perfect way to tell her story. After all, SPIN is "A Novel Based on A Mostly True Story."

An engaging and quick read. SPIN is laced with bits of American history during the time Annie was biking around the world in the 1890s. She encountered several well-known people, such as Susan B Anthony and Annie Oakley. So why have we heard nothing of Annie's feat before? Peter Zheutlin skillfully took us on Annie's journey using a letter that she has written to her only Granddaughter, Mary, and was able to capture her feelings, her awareness, and why made some of her decisions. Both Annie and the author tell us to decide for ourselves what to believe and what is imagined. If not for the author's research and tenacity, the story of Annie Londonderry (Annie Cohen Kopchovsky) likely would have been lost. Our discussion revolved around Annie, women's issues, and the press. We decided that even during Annie's time, the press played an important role in promoting her and her journey.

Annie was ahead of her time. Every idea of what a woman ‘should’ be during the 1800s— she was not. She seemed aware of the fact that what she was doing would be frowned upon. We had good discussions regarding women and motherhood. Members were not fond of the choices that Annie made in her life, while others thought she felt trapped and had non-maternal instinct. Annie wasn’t suited for the traditional role of wife and mother and didn't deny it. At the first chance, she set out on her adventure around the world on a 42 -pound Columbia bike. To do this, she gradually changed her persona. Annie spun embellished tales on her trip.

Having never heard of Annie and her "Round-the-World" adventure, it was fun to do some additional research using d links provided via the author's Reading Guide and website. How is it that her family didn't know more of her story? The Author's Note explained that this family story had been lost. and gave insight into Annie's decisions. I appreciate the commitment made by the author in researching Annie, and that we are encouraged to imagine which parts of her story are true. You'll find Annie quite fascinating!”

Get Woke Book Club: "Read SPIN! You will be happy you went on the ride! As the wheels on Annie’s bike turn, readers are entertained with tales of adventure, imprisonment, romance, and danger. Annie’s contribution to the women’s movement made our members fortunate to have gone on the ride with her.” Our first in-person meeting in over a year was held at Next Chapter Winery. In honor of Annie, we rode bikes to the winery, and faced many dangers on the way! SPIN is based on the life of Zheutlin’s great-grandaunt, Annie Londonderry, who at age 23 in 1894 pedals around the world on a man’s one-speed bike, earning room and board as she travels. In the first paragraph Annie, a.k.a. Annie Kopchovsky, reveals that she is not the ‘most reliable witness to the events of [her] own life,’ alerting readers that her penchant for ‘spinning’ was not confined to the bike. Let the ‘spinning begin’! We were amused and captivated by Annie’s stories. Did 500 people really attend Annie’s send-off in Boston? Did Annie log 10,000 miles on her one-speed, man’s bike? Did Annie perform in the Wild West show with Annie Oakley? These questions were spinning through our minds as we read."
"The important message behind Annie’s life and adventures: In an arranged marriage with an older man, the mother of three small children was the family’s breadwinner. Annie tells us that she was not the only woman of her era to be overwhelmed by her responsibilities, but she was able to ‘break free.' We felt we would not have left our children as Annie did, but understood the pressures and expectations placed on women of the era. Annie’s resourcefulness, spunk, and courage made her a ‘symbol for an entire generation of women and a symbol of the struggle for women’s equality.' The invention of the bicycle emancipated women, and drastically influenced a redesign of their clothing. Annie’s ability to 'ride' this new movement was more important than any actual miles spent on her bike."

"We played ‘Fact or Fiction,’ a game combining Annie’s stories with facts from Zheutlin’s biography of Annie, AROUND THE WORLD ON TWO WHEELS. Each card featured an Annie story that prompted discussion about its veracity. The flip-side provided factual information. Annie’s tales had our heads spinning and judgments faltering. Events we labeled as fact were fiction, and vice versa." "Trust us, Annie’s stories are worth the read. 125 years after her momentous trip, she is reveling in the attention that her stories continue to generate. As one member said, ‘This was over 100 years ago, and women are still fighting some of the same battles.'"

Menu: "Annie suggested that Colonel Pope greet her whiskey. We identified as 'Kindred Spirits' with Annie with the winery’s whiskey.

Mountain Meadows Book Club of Renton, Washington "A good match for a book club of independent and adventurous women. SPIN: A novel based on a MOSTLY true story told us we'd be reading a biographical account of an interesting woman with a little bit of artistic license thrown in. A global sensation in the 1890s, the story of Annie Londonderry was mostly forgotten: In 1895 The New York World declared Annie’s round-the-world bicycle tour “the most extraordinary journey ever undertaken by a woman.” A hundred years later, the extraordinary journey of discovery Peter undertook to bring this story to life is just as fascinating.

Discussion highlights included our fascination with how the story of Annie came to the author's attention and what kind of providence? fate? luck? started the chain of events that ended with this interesting story. Sorting through Annie's truth to try to imagine what the actual situations would be like was interesting. A woman of her time being able to self-promote and control her own narrative was very impressive -even if it meant embellishing the truth. No man (then or now) would think embellishing the truth for promotional purposes is even the slightest bit scandalous. We were left wanting to know more about Annie. Tons of Googling and Wiki searches were our norm."
Very few books compel the reader to want to know more about the origins of the story. After reading SPIN I not only craved more information about Annie Londonderry, but dare I say, I wanted to learn so much more about the circumstances that brought this book into being. The story behind the story captured my imagination as much as Ms. Londonderry herself.

A series of events led Zheutlin to discover the details of his family’s history from a second cousin. Deep in her basement are boxes filled with forgotten family secrets and history. After extensive research and time piecing together the puzzle, he has created a novel, mostly based on fact, of this amazing woman, Annie Londonderry.

"We highly recommend the book, and suggest you check out the authors 2008 account of Annie Londonderry’s extraordinary ride: ‘Around the Word on Two Wheels.’”

Pittsburgh Chick LIt Book Club of Pennsylvania: "A winner! We thoroughly enjoyed SPIN. Annie motivated us to dust off our bikes and travel local bike paths this spring. We may just call ourselves the ‘Annie's Girls’ as we bike around our neighborhoods.

‘Annie didn't run away to join the circus. Annie became the circus.’ Author Peter Zheutlin 's comment summarizes our book discussion. Peter joined our discussion and provided insight on the research and writing. It's difficult to believe that a 23 year-old, married woman with three children, would leave her family for over a year to bicycle around the world—over 100 years ago.. Annie Kopchovksy, who assumed the name Annie Londonderry for her adventure, learned to ride a bike, plotted biking routes, handled the logistics of traveling between stops, and financed her adventure primarily by giving lectures and working odd jobs while on her trip. Our complaints about commutes and business trip delays pale in comparison to Annie’s challenges as she biked around the world. While the author admitted it is difficult to separate fact from fiction in Annie's stories, the route she traveled is accurate and indicates a woman with a strong desire to succeed. A master of self-promotion, Annie notified journalists before arriving in a city and worked with them to get her story published in newspapers.

It surprised us that Annie was a sensation not only in the countries and cities that she visited but also in places to which she never traveled. The world delighted in her sensational stories. While she may have embellished her accomplishments, it was clear she was not afraid to be herself and to be recognized for her success. We appreciate stories about women who overcame difficulties to achieve their dreams/goals."

Coming June 2020

The Mindful Glow Cookbook by Abbey Sharp

Binding: Hardcover

List Price: $34.00 CAD

Our Price: $12.99 CAD

While Abbey Sharp is a hilarious presence in her cookbook, she radiates compassion in her book’s introduction with some sage advice: there is no one diet for everyone. Packed with a myriad of recipes and gorgeous photos, this book is a celebration of what she calls “mindful eating,” which serves to remind readers to enjoy different foods and flavors without regret. Sharp’s cookbook radiates body positivity and encourages readers (and eaters!) to listen to their bodies and to sit down with friends and family to enjoy delicious eats!

There it is folks! We hope you’ve had your wish list handy – there are so many highly anticipated reads hitting our shelves within the next 6 months and we can’t wait for you to get your hands on them. Feel welcome to let us know which book you’re most excited about. We’ll be back with more anticipated reads soon!

Watch the video: Food Guest: MN Monthlys Food u0026 Wine Experience (May 2022).


  1. Comyn

    Yes! cheered up

  2. Ptolemy

    Now I will read it more ... neat =))))))

  3. Zujin

    I know that it is necessary to do)))

  4. Gugul

    How can we define it?

  5. Newlin

    I suggest you visit the site, on which there are many articles on this issue.

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