It was such an honor to be a part of Charleston Wine and Food Festival’s Street Team again this year. The festival knocked it out of the park, outdoing themselves with bigger and more innovative ways to share food culture. With well known chefs and alcohol brands from all around the world every event was an experience stimulating all of the senses. My round up of events covered everything from baking biscuits with Carrie Morey of Callie’s Biscuits to a decadent brunch entertained by drag queens. Besides getting to indulge in the best food and drinks you can consume in one sitting, I love the sense of community these events evoke. It’s so refreshing to see a gathering of people of all cultural backgrounds come together because we all believe that eating great food with a drink in hand, is our happy place.
What does is mean to be on the street team for Charleston Wine and Food Festival? I was able to attend events that I wanted to highlight and promote on my social media. Since I’m not a big drinker I went to food focused events that were both hands on and had some entertainment value. My partner in crime was Liz Martin AKA the Charleston Weekender. We got to play Instagram wifey and provided each other with some comic relief. I’m so glad I got to bump into a lot of my fellow street teamers this year like The Cocktail Bandits, Charleston Food Writer, Jai Eats, Holy City Handcraft, Queen of the Foodage, Sweet Southern Prep, and Snoop Natty Nat.
I’ll start with the last event (and maybe my most favorite) and work my way back. The Queens on King drag brunch was out of control amazing! Set at the William Aiken house, it was southern decadence at it’s best. Monica Van Pelt of Lips Atlanta was the host of the show and brought the flashiest girls from Atlanta to Charleston. We started out with cocktails topped with cotton candy from Pure Fluff Co. and breakfast bites from soon to be open Daps.
What do you wear to a drag brunch? Me and the Charleston Weekender opted for a monochromatic look – suit and PJ’s. My outfit is from from Rachel Roy – Mint leaf blazer $139, Sailor Jogger Pants $99, Tarah Top $79. You can shop the links and when you use CHARLESTONSHOP20 at checkout you receive 20% off! These sunglasses by Blue Planet Eyewear are my new favorite and they’re only $55.
Brunch is my favorite meal of the day and Saturday was another breakfast bonanza for the #brunchsquad event at The Workshop. What does a brunch squad entail? We divided up into teams headed by a well known chef and learned how to cook/bake a dish enough for hundreds of people. Once those dishes were ready they were brought out to us on the great lawn and we stuffed ourselves while we enjoyed sweet beats by a dj. The inspiring Ellen Bennett of Hedley & Bennett was the host along with sponsors Cherry Bombe Magazine and Williams Sonoma. Talk about a lot of girl power!
Innovative food like these ice cream drumsticks were just some of the fun dishes on the line up.
The only bad thing about the Charleston Wine and Food Festival is coming off that high. After days of eating my heart out I’m already going through withdrawals. The reality of cooking for myself at home has set in, but thank God I have plenty of my favorite local spots I can always treat myself to. I’m looking forward to seeing what the 2019 festival has in store!
View more to find out about my all food adventures.
Photo by Jonathan Boncek
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I can’t believe it’s already February! Where did the time go? Luckily I can feel that spring is around the corner, which means a change of wardrobe and Valentine’s Day. I’ll be sharing a lot things on this post starting with this dress from Mulberry and King. I was eyeing it at the Champagne Society at The Skinny Dip a couple of weeks ago when the founders Meghan and Meredith were speaking. I loved hearing their story about starting a successful online store, how could you not want to support these two boss moms??
Rose gold is still having a moment, and it’s not going anywhere. I love these rings from Gold Creations, especially the morganite ones. The pale pink stone on the rose gold is too good. The flowers are from Petaloso, and I’m so lucky I have a good friend who is both talented and has great taste. Flowers add so much life and vibrancy in photos and who doesn’t love fresh flowers? I have a feeling you’ll be seeing more pretty arrangements popping up on my blog more frequently.
This cute little macaroon jewelry box from Vieuxtemps is the cutest thing and it comes in a array of pastel colors. Perfect for storing your jewelry when your travelling, but don’t try to eat them, they’re not edible.
But these cupcakes from Cupcake sure are! I’ll be featuring them on my Lowcountry Live Valentine’s segment today at 10am alongside Island Haus Paperie, Stella Nova at Mt. Pleasant Towne Centre, and Holy Spokes Bike Share. I’m also doing an instagram giveaway with Cupcake and Holy Spokes Bike Share, click here to check out the latest posts and enter to win!
These rose gold beauties are by Pilar Cuadros, a Peruvian brand I discovered from my friend Romel Oliveria. I love supporting home grown brands across the globe, especially when they make gorgeous shoes.
Today is also National Wear Red Day to raise awareness on women’s heart health. The American Heart Association’s national movement to end heart disease and stroke in women has been a huge campaign and I’m happy to spread the word. I hope I see a lot of red on the streets in Charleston today!
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When your shopping for the person that seems to have it all, Vieuxtemps is your place to find that special gift like this Champagne Saber. Why pop the bottle the traditional way when you can slay it and look super cool? Yes, this the lower King boutique stocks up on unique gifts for everyone on your list, even the kiddos. Owned by Natalie Taylor this local shop is known for their generous offerings of china and crystal, popular among bridal registries. Her diverse selection of gifty items might have you overwhelmed at first, but take your time to take it all in. Here are some of my favorite finds at every price range.
Bracelet Flask $58
Gingerbread Advent Calendar, pre-filled with toys and candy $98
Made in Denmark Mice, toothfairy $36 and hero in a suitcase $32
Louis Sherry Chocolate Boxes, 12 piece $35 and 2 piece $8.50
Gold and Black bar set $162 and hand etched glasses (Charleston Map or Christmas Sweater) $14 each
Hollywood Dogs leather bound book $100, Choupette – the story of Karl Lagerfeld’s cat $9.98, Modern Aristocrats $60, The Gospel According to Chanel Leather Bound Book $85
So when your ready to knock out people on your Christmas list or need a hostess gift, swing by Vieuxtemps at 180 King Street. Follow them on Instagram and Facebook to stay updated with all of the great product they have coming in. Also, from now until December 12th they’re collecting toys for Toys for Tots and offering 10% off when you bring something in.
View more for a little Q & A with Natalie and more gift ideas!
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Riding bikes is one of my favorite things to do and being able to soak up the scenery on two wheels in Wild Dunes Resort is the ultimate experience. Their bike rental shop located across the street from The Village Inn has bikes for the whole family. The bike friendly sidewalk seemed to stretch for miles and the weather was perfect for our day of activities.
We worked up our appetites for breakfast at Huey’s, the restaurant on the green named for an infamous Goose that lurked the resort. With wrap around windows overlooking the golf course, the view was just as good as the food.
We had heard about their famous blueberry pancakes so we had to order that stat. They really did live up to the legacy and now every pancake I have after that is going to be a tough act to follow. They surprised us with this massive fruit plate that was enough to feed an army. This was one of the best breakfasts I’ve had in Charleston and I’ll have to make a trip back to Wild Dunes just to have those pancakes.
The golf course at Wild Dunes is recognized as the best in the state by Golf Digest with 36 holes spread out on their beautiful property. If your not an avid golfer but want to try your hand at it they offer clinics and private lessons by their seasoned instructors. Jeff Minton is one of the instructors and he gives the best pointers and tips. We loved our lessons with Jeff, especially my boys. Even Sebastian got to hit a few balls with his one good arm.
It’s all about the form and follow through.
The day continued with a tennis match on their clay courts and lounging by the pool. Another perfect day in paradise.
In case you missed out on my other blog post, I’m teaming up with Wild Dunes Resort on a special discount so you can experience all of the fun. Guests who book a minimum of two night stay using the special code CURATE will receive $100 off, valid for all stays through October 31st.
Photography by Clifford Pate
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Freshfields Village is buzzing with all of the new additions which means more reasons to keep on coming back. Along with village veterans like The Resort Shop (where this dress is from), new businesses like Elizabeth Stuart Design, Studio 33 Kiawah, Blue Mercury, and and Fuji Restaurant have popped up over the summer.
Elizabeth Stuart Design is known in the Charleston area for her sophisticated selections in home decor, art, and accessories. Her satellite shop in Kiawah is a curated mix of gorgeous jewelry from the likes of S Carter and cool shades by AM Eyewear (pictured here). Her offerings are a nice price range making it easy to find gifts or splurge on yourself.
Blue Mercury was a no-brainer top open up, with no other makeup stores in the area of Kiawah and Johns Island. This national store has shops everywhere including downtown Charleston, but this Freshfields Village location was much needed. You can find the best makeup and skincare lines out there, and also get spa treatments like facials, waxing, and massages. I had to try out some of their products and was so happy with the makeup application they gave me.
Another void in the area was a Japanese restaurant and our prayers have finally been answered with Fuji. Their creative selection of sushi rolls, delicious salads, and appetizers will have you wanting to come back over and over again. This is now on the top of my list for sushi in Charleston, and the best part is they can make any custom roll you want. My friend Libby of Plate South and I were on a roll (pun intended) sampling everything we thought we could fit in our stomachs. If you go you have to try my favorites – Harumaki, Tuna Martini and the Avocado Salad. As far as rolls go it just depends on how adventurous you are, but I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.
If your looking for a relaxing shopping and dining experience then Freshfields Village is your answer. Fall is always a great time to come out to the Village so follow them on Instagram to stay in the know of all of their events and happenings.
Dress by Laundry by Shelli Segal $295 from The Resort Shop // Sunglasses by AM Eyewear $465, Beaded purse by Ink + Alloy $62.50, Diamond tusk necklace by S Carter $3,545, Full pave diamond cuff by S Carter $1,370, Sterling silver wide ring by Sarah Richardson $200, Sterling silver equator ring $295, Asymetrical Iris Smokey ring $1,200, Sterling silver tripod ring by Sarah Richardson$155 all from Elizabeth Stuart Design from Freshfields Village // Caress sandals by Corso Como from Nordstrom $119.95
Photography by Libby Williams
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Nothing brings people together like great food, and of course drinks. The ultimate social event that does this on a whole other level is Charleston Wine + Food, and I was so honored to be a part of their #CHSWFFStreetteam. Sampling food from world renowned chefs is what I do best, and learning about the story behind the food was the cherry on top.
One of my favorites was literally a farm to table experience at the Fresh Future Farm Lunch. This non-profit urban farm and fresh market is located in North Charleston in the middle of a food desert. Visionary Germaine Jenkins created an urban oasis to grow organic food and independent grocery store for her community. The four-course feast was veggie heavy which I loved, and created by chefs across the U.S. – Executive Chef Todd Woods of The Oak Table (Columbia), Lionel Vatinet of La Farm Bakery (Cary, NC), Stuart Brioza of State Bird Provisions and The Progress (San Francisco), and Jason Vincent of Giant (Chicago).
The SFA Dockside Supper was a family style three-course meal held at the charming Cotton Dock at Boone Hall Plantation. When I walked down the Oak lined pathway to the beautifully renovated barn I knew this dinner was going to be spectacular. The SFA (The Southern Foodways Alliance) celebrates the diversity in Southern food and featured Angie Bellinger of Workmen’s Cafe. This soul food neighborhood restaurant is right down the street from my house in James Island and I can’t believe I’ve never been there before. After trying her famous Mac n’ Cheese and Lima Beans, I know I’ll be regular. Angie worked alongside a host of other chefs to create a meal to remember.
Just when I thought I’ve been everywhere in Charleston I discovered Runnymede Plantation for the From the Ashes event. I felt like I was transported to another time when the only way to cook food was over fire, hence the name From the Ashes. The exception was the food was gourmet and ran the gamut of oysters to woodfire oven pizza. I sipped and ate the night away while listening to live music and watched fire jugglers by the marsh.
Charleston Wine + Food is right up there as one of my favorite Charleston events, alongside of course Charleston Fashion Week. If only we could overlap the two so I can get my food on in between runway shows.
Photography by Libby Williams
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The yearly style frenzy, Charleston Fashion Week is exactly one week away and I’m so excited for the fashion marathon to begin. 5 nights of runways shows featuring emerging designers, established designers and local boutiques including one of my favorite stores, Dandy Boutique who will be on stage for their first time. If you’ve read my blog before you know that I’m a long time collaborator with Holly McGetrick, the owner of Dandy Boutique. I’m teaming up with her to style her retro-infused show next Tuesday night at Charleston Fashion Week.
To kick of Charleston Fashion Week I’ll be featuring Dandy Boutique, Leo & Sage, and Maris DeHart on Lowcountry Live this Friday at 10am. Tune in to see some sneak peek looks that they’ll be showing under the tents at Marion Square.
We couldn’t resist a photo op with this ’66 Mustang from Dream Classic Rentals. Our friend Pierre has quite a collection of hot rods that literally stop people in their tracks. I think this should be the official mascot of Dandy, don’t you agree?
After our little vintage car shoot we popped into Carmella’s Dessert Bar on East Bay, and we were literally in for a treat, I mean countless treats. If your a dessert lover like me, Holly, and Libby of Plate South are, then you’ll feel like you’ve died and gone to dessert heaven. Every sweet you can imagine, and other ones you didn’t even know existed live here at Carmella’s. On top of the pastry case filled with daily gourmet desserts, they always serve Gelato, Gelato Paninis (their version of an ice cream sandwich), 4 different versions of Waffles and Ice Cream, and a complete savory menu to balance out your sweet tooth.
This beauty right here is stuffed with maple bacon gelato, topped with whipped cream and chocolate covered bacon. If you like Chicken & Waffles, then you’ll be a fan of this one. View more if you want to see more of these decadent desserts at Carmella’s Dessert Bar and fun pics with the Dandymobile.
Wearing Emily and Fin jacket $86, Emily and Fin shorts $60, Sunglasses $20, BC Footwear shoes // Holly wears Traffic People dress $86, sunglasses and bags all from Dandy Boutique
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