A passion for food + fashion

Posts Tagged ‘NEW YEAR’S EVE’

Party Hotline

In Drink, Food, Media on December 19, 2010 at 10:54 pm

There are some girls who make it all seem so effortless. You know, the ones who log a 60-hour work week, look like supermodels and can cook for a crowd without batting a lash? I worship at the 4-inch stilettos of these women. And so, as we head into the hullabaloo that are the Christmas and New Years holidays, I checked in with three haute hostesses for their top three secrets for holiday entertaining. And, as always, I learned a new trick. My fave might be from my friend Tanya, who builds in time for a quick escape before her guests arrive. And check out how my cooking club amigas Sally and and Lulu set the scene. Read on!

Tanya Steel, award-winning Editor-in-Chief, Epicurious.com and co-author of Real Food for Healthy Kids

Because I end up cooking almost the entire meal for every holiday, there are a few ways I ensure I will not be a crazed, exhausted, stressed-out person the day of—well, only somewhat crazed, exhausted, and stressed:

I prep every single possible part of every recipe the day before.

I force, I mean, ask my children to set the table the night before.

I get up early the day of the meal, finish prepping and cooking, and then go for a walk, by myself, so I can get 45-minutes of me time.

Lulu Powers, celebrity caterer and author of Lulu Powers Food to Flowers

Cocktail Ornaments: Store cranberries in the freezer to adorn cocktails with. These frozen delights will give any gathering the holiday spirit.

Festive Details: Details as small as festive cocktail napkins can make a big impact, so be prepared for any occasion by keeping a few readily available.

Jack-of-all-Toppings: Always have a bag of Sargento Artisan Blends shredded Parmesan on hand. It is perfect on soup, pasta, salad, chicken and so much more.

Sally Horchow, Lifestyle and Trend Expert and co-author of The Art of Friendship

Be smelly! We often focus so much on festive looking & tasting decor, cocktails, and nibbles, but the olfactory sense can make the most impact. Brew some mulling spices on the stove, decorate with fragrant paperwhites, pick one candle scent to burn in bathrooms and corner tables, or bake some gingerbread cookies just before showtime.

Prep for your conversations. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by hosting and end up disappointed that you didn’t get a chance to truly connect with anyone. Looking at your guest list in advance and preparing a few things you’d like to learn and/or say can help you cut to the chase and be a more thoughtful host.

Mix stationary and passed hors d’oeuvres. It’s easy for you and fun for your guests to have a central place to gather round to eat, but giving yourself at least one hors d’oeuvre to pass gives you the perfect excuse to weave your way through the party and interact with every guest.

And what’s The Foodinista’s top trick? When in doubt, serve more wine—and then a little bit more.

Midnight (NYE) in the Garden of Good and Evil

In Food, On Location: Out and About in L.A. on December 14, 2009 at 7:40 pm

Since we’ve known each other, my husband and I have spent every New Year’s Eve together at Lucques, including the New Year’s Eve upon which we got engaged, after which we rushed over to a party at our friends Booth and Adam’s house. This year we are heading back with Booth and Adam, and my sister, Claire, and OH MY GOD. I’m so excited about the low-country menu! Check it out! And what to wear? After a visit to Club One in Savannah with my cousin Stefanie several years ago (photos sooo not appropriate for this blog even though I was wearing a favorite gauzy Gaultier top and Stefanie sparkled in gold lamé), I’m thinking feathers are appropriate. And of course we’ll be toasting to the Lady Chablis!

Hello, Bolly!

In Drink on December 31, 2008 at 7:42 pm


Two years ago tonight my husband proposed in the garden courtyard at Lucques, where we are heading tonight for the late seating. But first, it seemed only fitting to pop open a bottle of the very first bubbly we ever shared together, a 1998 Bollinger La Grand Année, and enjoy a sip or two before calling a cab to take us to a pre-dinner party. Be safe tonight, be merry and a very Happy New Year!!!

Toast 2009 with a Tiara!

In Fashion on December 30, 2008 at 2:51 pm


On the eve of New Year’s Eve, it’s hard not to think about tiaras. Nobody wore a tiara like Princess Grace—set halfway back so that it almost becomes part of the hairstyle. Diana also rocked this look, dianathough her hand-me-down Spencer family tiara was flashy even by HRH standards, to say nothing of  the “Cambridge Knot” Queen Mary tiara from her mother-in-law. (Love the eye roll in this shot.) 

The closest I’ve come to anything this fabulous was when Erica Courtney let me try on one of her custom platinum and diamond tiaras several years ago—lord knows what lucky starlet now owns that glittering piece of heaven. For the rest of us mere mortals, there are some pretty crystal offerings over at the Swarovski boutique in Century City, like this appropriately festive Confetti tiara. confettiTomorrow night I’ll be ringing in the New Year with the faux pearl and diamond number from Barneys pictured below, which I wore down the aisle in lieu of a veil several years ago. 


Or for sheer fun, check out a marabou number  ($12) from the Barney’s kids section by clicking here.

Painting the town Moulin Rouge

In Fashion, Food on December 16, 2008 at 5:56 pm


There’s nowhere I’d rather be in LA on New Year’s Eve than at Lucques in West Hollywood, so we got a jump on reservations. Each December 31, the restaurant rings in the New Year with a totally unforgettable—even through the Champagne haze—themed menu. Three years ago it was a Scottish Hogmanay night complete with bagpipers and the staff kitted out in kilts. It was also the first time my now-husband dropped the “L” bomb, and I remember wearing a dusty pink Loy and Ford “Fortuny” pleated skirt and a feather stole. The following year, a spectacular Venetian theme prevailed, with guests in feathered masks and courtiers juggling in the aisles. I will never forget wearing what has become my favorite dress—a silk chiffon handkerchief-hem Sass & Bide frock—because that was the night my husband proposed, getting down on one knee by our table out on the patio. I wore that dress six months later on our honeymoon, in Venice. Last year was a Greek theme with raucous entertainers (I zigged with black velvet AGs and a Viktor & Rolf tuxedo jacket while the staff zagged in togas), which we enjoyed with two of our dearest friends and celebrated the news that we were expecting our first child. (2007 was a busy year to say the least.)

This year looks to be the best menu yet: New Year’s Eve at the Moulin Rouge. We have so much to celebrate. What the evening will hold is anyone’s guess, but one thing is certain. I know what I won’t be wearing.