2011 Cocktail Trends

I love discovering new, interesting and beautiful cocktails. I thought it would be fun to do some research on new trends in fancy drinks and I found some mouth-watering delights to share!

Kentucky Bourbons:

Kentucky Bourbon

Well, OK, I wouldn’t describe this first one as fancy, but this traditional drink deserves it’s propers. The Kentucky Derby has spurred some new drink trends like Kentucky Bourbons and Kentucky-style Negroni (for those who prefer a bitter drink). The best bourbons out there? It’s up for debate, but here’s a list of some of the greats if you’re in the mood to mix your own:
Buffalo Trace
Eagle Rare Single Barrel
Knob Creek
Corner Creek Reserve
Maker’s Mark
Old Rip Van Winkle

If you’d prefer a professional to mix your perfect Kentucky Bourbon, check out this Seattle speakeasy: Bathtub Gin & Co.

Negroni with floated orange zest

The traditional Negroni is a concoction of Campari, gin, and sweet vermouth. But if you change it out with bourbon, it loses its trademark acidity and becomes a little warmer. A little more Southern. Licorous makes an irresistable House Negroni.

Unexpected seasonal fruits and vegetable creations:
Think fresh and organic everything! Instead of pomegranate juice, the best mixologists use pureed, strained pomegranate seeds. Of course, pomegranate season doesn’t start until September, but if you’re planning a fall or winter wedding, you might want to think about offering this beautiful martini at your reception!

Sliced Pomegranate

Perfect Pomegranate Martini

Perfect Pomegranate Martini Recipe:
• Pureed, strained pomegranate seeds
• Lemon vodka
• Cointreau Liqueur
• Crushed Ice
• Splash of mineral or sparkling water
• Splash of fresh-squeezed lemon

For fresh and artfully crafted cocktails, you can’t beat Tavern Law on Capitol Hill. The bartenders here are real professionals with an old-school approach to crafting the perfect cocktail.

If you like your cocktails more veggie than fruity, hit the farmer’s market and make your own Green Mary. Or if you happen to be in NYC for the weekend, Rouge Tomate gives this classic Bloody Mary a green twist.

Green Mary Drink at Rouge Tomate

For more fresh cocktails, pick up Market-Fresh Mixology: Cocktails for Every Season by Bridget Albert and Mary Barranco.

Market-Fresh Mixology

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Fitness for Your Wedding: Mind, Body & Soul

It’s time to get in shape for your big day. But physical fitness isn’t the only thing brides should focus on before their wedding. Maintaining balance during one of the most exciting times of your life not only makes you healthier, it makes you more attractive.

Try this great mind exercise: Practice visualizing yourself walking down the aisle, completely calm, gorgeous and SMILING! Notice that everyone watching you is in awe at how radiantly beautiful you are, inside and out.

Meditation is wonderful for quieting the mind and reducing stress. It’s not as hard as you might think. It just takes practice, like everything else.

Getting in shape probably won’t take as long as you think if you’re committed to exercising on a regular basis. Invite your mom, aunts and bridesmaids along to make it more fun. I’ve got some great recommendations for getting in shape fast.

Boolates at Sassy Fit. Boolates combines the non-stop intensity of a boot camp class with the fluid, graceful movements of Pilates. After a warm-up, light band work is incorporated with standing and mat exercises to tone and define your arms, shoulders, legs, and core – without adding bulk. The ballet-inspired cardio bursts and continuous flow of exercises focus on lengthening, stretching, and utilizing the breath. This movement creates a dancer’s physique that you can’t accomplish from straight cardio or weight training workouts.

If you’re looking for a top-notch personal trainer, please give Shannon Gowens a call. She works at the Pro Sports Club in Bellevue and she’s the best I’ve found. Phone:425-869-4757 x7536.  Or you can email her at:

One of the new crazes in fitness right now is called CrossFit. It takes less time, about 20 minutes a day, and people are seeing great results. CrossFit Seattle can help you get in shape, fast.

Have you seen the new reality competition Shedding for the Wedding yet? If you haven’t, you should. It’s really inspiring and a nice, entertaining break from a stressful day. The contestants not only work out to lose weight, but also work to change their eating habits under the supervision of celebrity nutritionist Ashley Koff.

Speaking of nutrition, I’ve seen excellent results with the Weight Watchers program. Right now I have two clients who lost 15 pounds each! Jennifer Hudson is their new spokesperson and she looks amazing!

Don’t forget to do the things you love. Whether it’s painting, gardening, reading or people watching, do not neglect what you’re drawn to. Doing what you love makes you happy and happiness is beautiful. Are you thinking you don’t have time? That’s one more reason to hire a wedding planner. You deserve to sit back and really enjoy this process.

Maybe you’ve forgotten that you used to love playing tennis? Think about the physical activities or sports you loved as a kid and try them again. It’s much easier to get into shape when you’re having fun!

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Table Top Contest

The 3rd annual table top contest was held this past March at the beautiful Columbia Winery in Woodinville. The Association of Bridal Consultants also known as ABC along with the International Special Events Society, also known as ISES participated in the contest. There were 16 entries.

Judges choice, our esteemed judges, Laura Cassidy from Seattle Metropolitan Magazine, Blair deLaubenfels of, and Jenny Klimenkoff of Far 4 selected Stephanie Salemann’s entry for their choice. Stephanie represented Twelve Baskets Catering, and named her table “Something Old, Something New. She had the only table that used pillows for chairs! Very unique!

Peoples choice, first place was awarded to Viennese Waltz designed by Stacy Kvam of SK Wedding and Event Design. Her co-designer was Patty Holder of Brittany Flowers. 2nd Place was awarded to Something Old, Something New! Stephanie Salemann of Twelve Baskets Catering. Third place was fun. There was a 3-way tie between Sherry Smith of McKenzieKate Weddings and her co-designer Lana Spagnoli of Seattle Flowers. Brian Dale of Wave Link Music and his co-designer Jillian Cook of Wave Link Music and Lacie Powell of The Bellevue Collection for the Garden of Eaten’. After a round of applause, members and guests selected Lacie Powell’s Garden of Eaten Nancy Shaw, owner of AA Party Rentals received accolades for their involvement. At least 80 percent of the tables used complimentary items from AA Party Rental.

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Seattle Met Bride & Groom Magazine

See an elegant expression of my creativity on the stands now in the Seattle Metropolitan Bride and Groom Magazine! I had the true pleasure of designing a table that represents fall in the Northwest! The Pacific Northwest provides such a rich and colorful palette to be inspired by.

Fall brings a time to harvest…leaves are changing colors and start to cascade to the ground. It’s time to select the perfect pumpkin for Halloween…or for a gorgeous centerpiece. When I first laid my eyes on a white pumpkin I was beyond inspired. I saw cream cabbage and red apples all piled together to create an organic centerpiece, as if you had just picked them straight from the garden. Thanks to Patty at Brittany Flowers in Kirkland, who transformed the dusty, little pumpkin from my “harvest” into a very elegant display!

Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory added sheen and sugar to my hand picked, Washington red apples with their tantalizing cherry coating. The candy-coated apples were good enough to bite into on the spot, or take home for a savory late night treat. By topping each apple with a veneer, leaf shaped name card, the apples not only provided an enticing sweet for the guests, but they also let the guests know where they were sitting. Who knew functionality could taste so good!

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When people ask me where to go for the ultimate special occasion, Canlis always comes to mind. Synonymous with Seattle elegance and style, Canlis offers three private dining rooms, accommodating two to 90 guests. The ultra-chic property features floor-to-ceiling windows with 180-degree views of picturesque Lake Union and the Cascade Mountains.

Beyond the captivating drama of Canlis’ surroundings, you’ll also find their bartender, James MacWilliams concocting the equally breath-taking Proserpina Margarita (hear the “ohhs” and “ahhs” when it changes color), and the Declaration Cocktail.

But you may find yourself declaring more than and “ohh” and “ahh” after you’ve tasted a meal from Canlis’ nationally recognized, Executive Chef Jason Franey. He and his staff provide the best of what’s local and fresh: sumptuous oysters from Taylor Family Shellfish to just-picked produce from Full Circle Farm. And for the ultimate in an intimate dining experience, Chef Franey can prepare an amazing evening of culinary delights right in your own home.

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