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The Luxury Lifestyle Magazine of Texas



holiday inspirations

With Statement Accessories by Oscar de la Renta, Valentino, Dior + More

From festive recipes to opulent tabletops, everything you need to entertain this season



november/december } $5.95 US



table settings with festive flair

The ultimate holiday markets and their one-of-a-kind items



Delight your senses with

Dareto be Different!



from the

facebook.com/ riverstonecommunity From US-59 in Sugar Land take Hwy 6 south 3 miles



from the

facebook.com/ imperialsugarland At Hwy 6 and 90



from the

facebook.com/ HarmonyHoustonTexas I-45N to Rayford Rd., east for 5 miles to Riley Fuzzell Rd.



from the

facebook.com/FallCreek US 59 north and Beltway 8



from the

facebook.com/crosscreektexas Just past 99 on 1093

nd Pkw y.

Westpark Tol


Fort Bend Parkway

Communities that celebrate life.



from the

facebook.com/woodforest I-45N to FM 1488



from the

I-10 west, left at Pederson Rd. exit, right on Kingsland Blvd.



from the

facebook.com/tuscanlakes IH-45 South left on League City Parkway



from the

facebook.com/ siennaplantation Sienna Parkway at Hwy. 6


Developer of the Year

to be Outside the Loop! 2013 GHBA


lifestyle priceless. Where you can live life to the fullest — if you dare.

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Tabletop 31 Triumphs inspiration for a festive holiday tablescape

22 Recipes from the Vineyards 64 Market to Market feast on what the best winery chefs are dishing up

tour the best holiday markets in Europe

november/december • 2014




Head-Turning Accessories

9 •  cocktails & conversation • keeping you in the know Talking Points • Style • In the Mix • My Life Nostalgia • Bucket List • Wealth • Design

Publisher & Editor-in-Chief Karyn Dean


37 • connoisseur • Prime’s Guide to Discerning Taste Table Talk • Uncorked • Main Dish • Bragging Bites • Entertain

Publisher Terry Dean


49 • the gentlemen’s room • For the man who commands the very best Man Cave • Driver’s Seat • Cigar Notes • High Tech • Outdoors • Style 59 • escape • Greetings from destinations near and far Enlightened Explorer • Point of Interest

Editorial Assistant Ginny McCord gmccord@srgserv.com


Art Direction & Design LuckyYou! Creative Erin Loukili, Jaclyn Threadgill

Oh! Tannenbaum?


director of marketing Jennifer Dean Stavert

71 • live well • Feel Good, Look Good, be good Health Buzz • Feel Good • Focus & Function Look Good • Be Good 78 • prime list • Events, Galas and Fundraisers 5th Annual Elisa Project Esteem Fashion Show • Imperial Sugar Land Grand Opening



Metallic Glam

Marketing Assistant Winona Vo wvo@srgserv.com

Circulation/ Distribution Brian Stavert




Contact 311 Julie Rivers Drive Sugar Land, Texas 77498 281.277.2333 Editorial Inquiries editor@prime-living.com Advertising Inquiries advertise@prime-living.com

78 The Luxury


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} $5.95 november/december


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table Settin



holiday the ultimate their marketS and itemS one-of-a-kind



on the cover Veal chop with shallots, carrots and roasted potatoes. Find the recipe along with other holiday inspired recipes on prime-living.com. Turn Heads (pages 12 - 13), World Market (pages 64 - 69), Tabletop Triumphs (pages 31 – 35)

subscribe AT prime-living.com ©2014 Prime Living Magazine is a publication of SRG Services, Inc., published bi-monthly. Copies are mailed and handdelivered to households and businesses throughout Texas. This publication may not be reproduced, in whole or in part, without the express prior written permission of the publisher. The publisher assumes no responsibility to any party for the content of any advertisement in this publication. The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the position of the publication.



s i g n i m i T hing t y r e Ev












Tortuga is the registered trademark of Victor Vitale







publisher’s note

the prime living crew


their favorite holiday songS Terry Dean {publisher}

Anything Bing

Karyn Dean


Christmas in Killarney

Jennifer Dean Stavert

Brian Stavert

{accounting/circulation manager}

Christmas Time Is Here (Instrumental) by Vince Guaraldi Trio

Jaclyn Threadgill {graphic designer}

My Little Drum by Vince Guaraldi

{director of marketing}

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

Erin Loukili

Ginny McCord

Carol of the Bells by Mannheim Steamroller

{art director}

{editorial assistant}

Baby, It’s Cold Outside

Tom Kircher Myles Moore

{senior distribution representative}

Little Drummer Boy

Victoria Nowak {secretary/ad coordinator}

Holly Jolly Christmas

{graphic designer}

Christmas Canon by Trans-Siberian Orchestra

Winona Vo

{marketing assistant}

All I Want For Christmas Is You by Mariah Carey

Like something you read? want more? Check out our Bonus Content Online on prime-living.com coming up Spice up your life with romantic destinations, recipes and more in our Healthy Living issue.




Every year, thousands of children and women from Houston and around the world come to Texas Children’s Hospital seeking advanced treatments and world-class care. We’re here to speak up for them through financial contributions, events, and social advocacy. Will you join our cause? Become an Ambassador for Texas Children’s Hospital. Visit ambassadors.texaschildrens.org or call 832.824.6900.







cocktails & conversation

cocktails & conversation the prime living guide to Keeping You in The Know

Silahis Loyola


Designer Missy Stewart

10 12 14 15 16 18 20 21

• • • • • • • •

Talking points What’s Trending Style Head–Turning Accessories In the Mix French 75 My Life Outdoor Illuminator Nostalgia Oh Tannenbaum Bucket List Reservations Please Wealth Investing in a Yacht DESIGN Holiday Hostess november/december • 2014


cocktails & conversation

Talking points

>> For the Sentimental Collector

Forever Janis Joplin

I >> For the luxury experience seeker

HALL Wines Luxury Package ALL Wines put together a lavish holiday gift package designed for wine lovers, jetsetters


and lovers of luxury. The package includes roundtrip domestic first-class airfare to Napa for two; a three-night stay at SENZA; private town car transportation; and a case of your own custom-blended wine, among other goodies. With memorable hands-on culinary experiences and a sunset wine cruise as well as private tours of Sachrashe Vineyard, Bergfeld Vineyard, St. Helena, WALT Wines and HALL, this is a must-have for luxury experience seekers. hallwines.com #youcanneverhavetoomuchhallwine

n salute of an American legend, the U.S. Postal Service recently added Janis Joplin to its Music Icons Forever Stamp series. The Janis Joplin Forever Stamp is the fifth in the Postal Service’s Music Icons series, joining a list of celebrated artists including: Lydia Mendoza, Johnny Cash, Ray Charles and Jimi Hendrix. The stamp features a June 1970 portrait taken in New York City by renowned music photographer David Gahr. uspsstamps.com #woodstockjoplinrules

Tesseron Cognac


or the first time, family-owned Tesseron— known to insiders and connoisseurs for blending some of the world’s finest Grande Champagne cognacs—unveils a Signature Collection. The collection is available nationwide and has four offerings representing four generations and more than 100 years of tradition in growing, distilling, aging and blending the finest reserve cognacs: XO Passion, Extra Legende, Tresor and Royal Blend. The unveiling coincides with the release of three stunning Royal Blend decanters. tesseroncognac.com #addtosantalist



>> FOr the Chocoholic Cruiser

Princess Cruises Chocolate Experiences


n partnership with internationally acclaimed master chocolatier Norman Love, Princess Cruises brings guests an onboard over-the-top chocolate experience. The package, titled Chocolate Journeys, offers chocolate and wine pairings, cooking demonstrations and cutting-edge sweet treats throughout the cruise. chocolatejourneys.com #chocoholicprincess

Chris Michel | Lucy Mcnally | Princess Cruises | David Gahr | Bruce Steinberg | USPS

>> For the exclusive sipper

cocktails & conversation

Talking points >> For the cosmetic connoisseur

Gucci’s New Cosmetic Line ith a near 100-year history of glamorous fashion, Gucci


Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite | Gucci | Jordan Fewox

now offers a new cosmetic line—a 200-piece collection of sophisticated makeup technology. The debut lineup includes Gucci Eye, Gucci Face, Gucci Lip and Gucci Nail, together with luxurious brushes and special preparation products for skin. The same rich history, which powers the high-octane glamour of the brand’s runway collections, is the inspiration for Gucci Cosmetics. gucci.com #guccihandbagmeetnails

>> For the nostalgic foodie

The Lone Star state’s first supper-club


rohibition Supperclub & Bar recently opened in Houston, bringing the golden age of the 1920s alive in an authentic, turn of the century space that was once the 1930s Isis Theatre. This 8,000-square-foot restaurant is one of the first supper clubs in Texas, setting the stage for dinner and a show featuring the talented Moonlight Dolls. In the restaurant, chefs Ben McPherson and Matt Wommack put forth a decadent menu of roaring classics, including seafood and comfort food with a modern edge. The venue is decked out with unique vintage design and original artwork—and the staff, decked out in the best of the 1920s. prohibitionhouston.com #suppertimetexasstyle

>> For the Rustic Meets Luxury New Year’s Eve celebrator

Tenaya Lodge’s Vegas Show


enaya Lodge at Yosemite’s Vegas-inspired soiree will feature upscale dining, live music and an unforgettable “Impressions that ROCK!” show by award-winning master entertainer and expert impressionist, Greg London. The night will begin with a gourmet dinner, signature sippers then the musical styling of rock-n-roll icons such as Elvis Presley and Ozzy Osbourne. Revelers will then dance the night away with live music from the 14-piece band as well as a midnight champagne toast and festive balloon drop. When the night finally draws to a close, guests will take the elevator home to spend the first night of 2015 in one of the Lodge’s luxurious guest rooms. tenayalodge.com #designateddrivervolunteer

november/december • 2014


cocktails & conversation



Center Wrap Full Turban by Jennifer Behr $495 available on jenniferbehr.com

‘Varitas’ Red Leather Strap Watch by Versace $1,975 available on dillards.com

Empire Elongated Ring with Prasiolite, Green Tourmaline and Diamonds in 18-karat Yellow Gold by Ivanka Trump $5,850 available on ivankatrump.com

Spotted Calf Hair & Leather Gloves by Lanvin $895 available on neimanmarcus.com Knuckle Clasp Graphic Studded Box Clutch by Alexander McQueen $2,840 available on nordstrom.com




Jaime Wolf | Ivanka Trump | Tourneau | Neiman Marcus | Bergdorf Goodman | Dillards | Jennifer Behr | Dannijo | nordstrom

‘Harlow’ Frontal Necklace by Kendra Scott $225 available on nordstrom.com

cocktails & conversation

GG Stole with Fox Fur Trim, Brown by Gucci $1,350 available on neimanmarcus.com

Octavia Minaudiere, Mint and Seafoam Metallic by Dannijo $898 available on dannijo.com

‘Mystere’ 57mm Sunglasses by Dior $690 available on nordstrom.com

Cutout Jeweled Cuff Bracelet, Green by Oscar de la Renta $495 available on neimanmarcus.com

Rouge Absolute Crystal Suede Scallop Pump by Valentino $2,545 available on bergdorfgoodman.com Metallic Crystal Bow Tassel Belt, Gold by Oscar de la Renta $1,150 available on neimanmarcus.com november/december • 2014


cocktails & conversation

in the mix

4 ounces Mumm Brut Prestige

1/4 ounce lemon juice

shaker with cracked ice

1/2 ounce Beefeater Gin

french 75 courtesy of Babs Suzanne Harrison

To vary the classic recipe, increase the amounts of gin and lemon juice, decrease the amount of sparkling wine, and add a bit of powdered sugar.



1 orange twist

Find more mouthwatering cocktails on


Pernod Ricard

In a cocktail shaker, pour gin and lemon juice over ice. Shake and strain into a flute and top with bubbly. Garnish with an orange twist.

my life

cocktails & conversation

outdoor illuminator cody gilcrease

Cody Gilcrease


No one wants to turn ona blow dryer and take down their whole light display Story | Abby Wilson

or most people, “Up on the housetop, click click click” provokes images of reindeer and good Saint Nick, but to Cody Gilcrease of The Perfect Light, it reminds him how much work needs to be done. He’s spent many hours installing Christmas lights on rooftops around Texas. He hasn’t jumped down any chimneys, but he does make sure the custom displays feel like a magical gift straight from the North Pole. Gilcrease started out as a landscape lighting installer and quickly moved up to holiday lighting, then to sales and design. Now, he handles myriad responsibilities for a company that has perfected every step of the holiday lighting process. From simple residential decor to commercial sites with millions of LED lights set to music, Gilcrease says he wants everyone to have the best experience possible which means there’s no typical day at the office for him. His holiday season starts as early as August, coordinating installations with existing customers and scheduling appointments with new ones. Gilcrease may draw on his sales experience and meet with a potential client to discuss design. “Being electrically savvy, we can design and install anything anyone can dream up,” Gilcrease says. “We’ll pull out all the stops or just hit the high points—it’s up to the customer,” Gilcrease says of the wide range of choices, “We can do it all, but the door should be the brightest. It’s got to welcome you in.” “Whatever it takes,” he says, however that doesn’t include untangling last year’s garland. That pesky task is left to the client. It might also include working with licensed electricians to protect their clients’ sparkling investments. “No one wants to turn on a blow dryer and take down their whole light display,” Gilcrease says. By making the process as well-managed as possible, Gilcrease and team resemble another well-known, well-coordinated—but significantly shorter—group of Christmas cheer-bringers. Just don’t expect pointy hats.

november/december • 2014


cocktails & conversation


oh! tannenbaum?

Story | Bruce Farr

The era of aluminum Christmas trees was the apex of American holiday kitsch


hen did decorating the family Christmas tree get a bit out of whack? In the early 1960s, that’s when. Up until that time (and I speak from personal experience), the gaudiest decoration to land on the tree was silver tinsel strewn haphazardly across its fragrant green boughs as a last gesture—a finale, of sorts—when the tree was done being trimmed, lighted, ornamented and garlanded to everyone’s content. But in the heady, post-Eisenhower era of American celebration, the annual treetrimming tradition—perhaps influenced by the ultramodern furnishings of the Space Age—veered somewhat off the beaten path, lapsing into a strain of decorative folly that, despite the outcome, persisted for a surprisingly long time. The source of the problem was primarily one of raw materials: the traditional fresh-cut pine or spruce looked and smelled marvelous standing so regally in the family room, with its trunk settled in a reservoir of water, but, on the downside, after a week or so, it dried



out and shed needles, posing both a fire hazard and major cleanup challenge. So Mom and Dad, poring through their Sears, Roebuck & Company Christmas catalog, discovered that the shiny new, lightweight, all-aluminum trees were easy-to-handle, a snap to assemble and—best of all—when the season was over, they could be put away and stored in the attic, ready for the following year.

Did you know? Because aluminum Christmas trees weren’t actually made from solid metal, but, instead, a type of aluminum foil that was tightly compressed, their delicate branches couldn’t bear the weight of lights. To get around this limitation, manufacturers sold tree owners an electric “footlight” that rotated behind the tree, casting red, blue and green from a rotating color wheel.

And—voila!—a trend was born! After half a decade or so, the hue and cry that eventually went up about how aluminum trees were an insult to the Christmas holiday tradition reached such proportions that demand for them began to wane. In 1965, the popular Peanuts television special, “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” was themed around the commercialization of Christmas, of which the aluminum tree had become a glittery symbol. With the gradual decline of aluminum trees’ popularity (or, as some people refer to it, when Americans regained their better judgment), one would think they might have died a quiet death. Not so fast, however: the collectors’ market for such festive finery is running strong as holiday punch, and the Internet is littered with “vintage” aluminum Christmas totems. A visit to eBay, for instance, reveals that for a mere $175, you can be the owner of a “vintage 1960s 6-foot silver aluminum 92-branch tree.” Now that’s the spirit!

aluminum christmas tree lore


cocktails & conversation



The brief tradition of aluminum Christmas trees was ushered in by a host of other trees made of various artificial materials. Which two of the following were actually used in the creation of “faux” trees? A. fowl feathers B. paper mache C. polyvinyl chloride (PVC) D. fiberglass E. crab trap wire


At the height of their popularity in the early 1960s, aluminum Christmas trees were manufactured by nearly a dozen companies. Can you pick which two of the following companies were among them? A. National Tree Company B. Vickerman C. Evergleam D. Sparkler E. Neuman Tree Inc.


In 2005, a 7-foot tall pink aluminum tree was auctioned off on the Internet. How much did it fetch? A. $10,000 B. $42,000 C. $3,500 D. $900


Between 1959 and 1969, the heyday of aluminum trees, one of the largest manufacturers produced hundreds of thousands of them, giving the city where the manufacturer was located the odd moniker, “The Aluminum Christmas Tree Capital of the World.” Which city was it? A. Houston B. Van Nuys, California C. Manitowoc, Wisconsin D. Miami, Florida


True or false: Brevard, North Carolina is the home of the “Aluminum Tree and Aesthetically-Challenged Seasonal Ornament Museum and Research Center.”


have yourself a merry tack little christmas The aluminum Christmas tree might have been pretty high on the list of kitschy American holiday traditions, but it shared the honors with a number of others. How many can you name off the top of your head?

november/december • 2014


ANSWERS Aluminum Christmas Tree Lore Trivia: 1 (A) and (D), 2. (D) and (E), 3. (D), 4. (C), 5. (True) Have Yourself a Merry Tacky Little Christmas: (Possible Answers: “fruitcake,” “’bubbler’ tree lights,” “large, inflatable plastic Santas, sleighs and reindeer,” “fake snow,” “lighted plastic nativity scenes,” “sweaters with ‘naughty’ on one side and ‘nice’ on the other,” “Elf on a Shelf,” and, last but not least, the much-beloved holiday music classic, Snoop Dogg’s “Christmas in the Dogghouse.”)

cocktails & conversation

bucket list

reservations PLEASE!

Secure Reservations at One of New York’s Most Coveted Restaurants

Guests of Per Se, Thomas Keller’s FrenchAmerican restaurant in NYC, boast that the Chef ’s Tasting Menu offers an interactive experience, combining science, food and of course, impeccable service. With a unified team of some of the kitchen’s greatest minds, chef de cuisine Eli Kaimeh balances unique flavors in a nine-course prix fixe



menu that changes daily. Classics, such as the Oysters & Pearls and Beets & Leeks, often appear on the menu. Keller’s spinoff of his successful French Laundry in Napa Valley debuted in Manhattan in 2004. In the 64-seat dining room, guests enjoy stunning views of Columbus Circle and Central Park. As for the best seat in the house—well the folks at Per Se won’t give up that privileged information, so you’ll have to decide for

before you go To avoid a cancellation fee, patrons who must give up their reservation often promote the opening online. To find a lastminute reservation, check Open Table about three days prior. opentable.com/per-se yourself. Plan to reserve your table at least a couple of months in advance and be prepared to dress to the nines. If you can’t snag a dinner reservation during your visit, you might be able to squeeze in midday and enjoy additional choices of the seven- or five-course prix fixe lunch menus. Per Se also has a no-reservations salon where you can sip on a glass of bubbles and order a la carte. Because it’s walk-in only, be prepared to wait. Your taste buds will thank you. perseny.com

Courtesy of TKRG


t has never been an easy feat to land a reservation at restaurants of famed chefs. Chef ’s tables have been popping up around the country, making the dining experience intimate and exclusive. Now we are seeing limited-seating restaurants open their doors to a select few each month. Whatever the case may be, each brings a unique dining experience worth adding to your bucket list.

bucket list

cocktails & conversation

before you go After spending a decade in television, chef Curtis Stone returns to the restaurant kitchen for his first experience as chef-owner. He likes to have his hand in the day-to-day happenings at Maude. Brush up on episodes of “Take Home Chef,” “Top Chef Masters” and “Around the World in 80 Plates” to catch a glimpse of this celebrity chef’s personality.

Reserve the Chef’s Table at Los Angeles’ Latest Hot Spot

table-style establishment. Inspired by fresh ingredients sourced locally from Southern California, Stone puts together a nine-course combination of dishes that revolve around one peak seasonal ingredient. Depending on the featured ingredient, you might find yourself noshing on raviolo, a homemade pasta that has become quite a talking point among guests.

The atmosphere is comfortable and intimate, with only 25 seats and an open kitchen that encourages guests to interact with the kitchen staff. Seats at the Chef ’s Counter are by far the most coveted. Reservations for the month generally open at the beginning of the prior month, but act fast—reservations for Stone’s August corn menu sold out in one day! mauderestaurant.com

Snag a Seat Where the Washington Insiders Dine

late-night snack, chicken shawarma frequently appears on the menu as a signature item. Handcrafted beverage pairings are offered. Minibar takes reservations by email for

parties of up to six. Requests for spring/ summer (March–July) reservations begin in February, and fall/winter (September– February) in July. minibarbyjoseandres.com

Chef Curtis Stone opened the doors to his lifelong dream at the beginning of this year in Beverly Hills—Maude, a farm-to-fork eatery named after his late grandmother and first culinary mentor. This trendy little joint quickly became LA’s latest hot spot. You won’t find a menu at this chef ’s

Ken Wyner | Courtesy of Ray Kachatorian

Nestled in the Penn Quarter neighborhood of our nation’s capital are 18 bar-top seats, where nightly patrons experience an art show in which dinner is the medium. Minibar, the brainchild of José Andrés, exhibits cuttingedge gastronomic creations that will make you squint and think before you bite. Once a six-seat bar tucked in the corner of Andrés’ Café Atlántico, this D.C. hot spot debuted in its own space in November 2012. The tasting menu features 25 of Andrés’ creations prepared by executive sous chef Johnny Spero and his team. In homage to the favorite

before you go Prime your appetite and see what executive sous chef Johnny Spero is cooking up on his high-trafficked Instagram page. instagram.com/johnnyspero

november/december • 2014


cocktails & conversation


Investing in Your Vacation

with a Yacht Mike Sonnier, Managing Director, Private Client Advisor, U.S. Trust


ith the New Year right around the corner, now is the time to think of upcoming plans and travel arrangements for the year—whether you plan to travel abroad, spend time relaxing on the beach, or even set sail on the yacht of your dreams. A yacht is an extraordinary purchase, and owning a yacht can improve the overall vacation experience; serve as a personal oasis on the high seas; fulfill a life-long goal; or enhance an appetite for travel. Investing in a yacht can be within reach if the buyer has a plan and the right team. Having a trusted advisor can smooth a complicated process requiring expertise in both the acquisition and financing. Firsttime yacht owners should take extra care when purchasing a vessel or having one built. Having an experienced guide to help navigate finances can make all the difference. Working with a firm, like U.S. Trust, can help determine if the time is right and make the process smoother, giving the buyer, seller and builder one point of contact. An advisor can help ensure that the buyers’ objectives are met with a credit solution aligned to ownership structures and cash flow. Crafting a thoughtful plan is of the utmost importance when considering taking the next step in purchasing, refitting or building

a yacht. With such highly specialized assets, there are several important implications to be aware of when making an investment decision. Each individual’s unique plan must carefully consider: the payment schedule, interest rate alternatives, competitive amortization schedules, revenue stream potential, flagging and additional costs like moorage. Financing the yacht should reflect the owner’s lifestyle. Buyers should work with an advisor on a recommended approach to structuring credit, including loan terms, repayment options and amortization schedules. There are a number of possible approaches and solutions including risk management strategies or implementing a currency hedging approach for a foreign construction project. The owner, whether buying their first or trading up, should establish an appropriate credit solution aligned with their unique structure of ownership and cash flow. Flagging a new yacht is another aspect with financial considerations. Some U.S. Trust clients choose to register their yachts in a foreign jurisdiction for reasons including crew hiring, estate planning issues and tax considerations. As with the financing, having the right team can help the purchaser consider all their options. When building a custom yacht, be sure

to keep in mind that construction projects require an added level of experience and knowledge. Managing all the parties involved—clients, surveyors, brokers and shipyards—can be a full-time job. Before embarking on a custom construction project, consider the vast amount of planning and funds required. It’s important to ensure that your advisors are familiar with the shipbuilding process and all its considerations. When planning for the purchase of a yacht, it’s important to consider if the boat will be chartered, and if so, how it impacts the financing structure. Such considerations need to be addressed early in the process because they can change the structure of ownership. If charters are going to be a frequent occurrence, it may make more sense to establish a company to buy the yacht as opposed to an individual making the purchase. As with all aspects of finance, working with a dedicated advisor to help address such decisions can make all the difference. If you’re thinking about turning a passion into a reality in the New Year—remember just as you wouldn’t set sail without a seasoned skipper at the helm, setting out to buy or build a luxury yacht shouldn’t be done alone or without the knowledge and experience of a professional advisor.

This content represents thoughts of the author and does not necessarily represent the position of Bank of America or U.S. Trust. Always consult with your independent attorney, tax advisor, investment manager and insurance agent for final recommendations and before changing or implementing any financial, tax or estate planning strategy. Credit and collateral subject to approval. Terms and conditions apply. Programs, rates, terms and conditions subject to change without notice. U.S. Trust operates through Bank of America, N.A. and other subsidiaries of Bank of America Corporation. Bank of America, N.A., Member FDIC. © 2014 Bank of America Corporation. All rights reserved.




cocktails & conversation

Holiday Hostess T

Marco Ricca

powder room essentials Add a few essentials to your powder bath. Your guests will thank you! A small bunch of fresh flowers and a lighted candle. • Toothpicks and mints Beautiful soaps and embroidered hand towels (have a few backups) Aspirin, for those who enjoy your bar a little too much A discreetly hidden plunger and a few essentials for ladies to avoid an embarrassment

he holidays are fast approaching. Your home has been fully decorated and treasured collections have been displayed along with boughs of greenery, wreaths, trees and the like. Now all that’s left to do is plan a party. Consider your holiday décor style and colors used in your decorations when selecting your party theme. Decorating for a holiday party is similar to decorating any space starting with selecting a color and theme. Create a unique party atmosphere by designing your entertaining area as a stand-alone space with colors and a theme different from your other rooms. For an atmosphere that flows from room to room carry through the same holiday décor. Create focal points through strategic placement of pillows, florals and collections. Once you’ve decided on the type of party to host and sent invitations, begin to plan the menu, any additional decorations needed, the bar and music. Know your strengths— don’t try to do it all yourself—remember that you are going to want to spend time with your guests. Hire out the food if you’re not a budding chef—a few cater waiters can be brought in to serve drinks to a large crowd—and bring in a musician to provide some mood music and a florist to add some freshness to your everlasting, evergreen garlands. Most of all, make your guests feel welcomed when they walk in the door. A successful party should be dramatic and fun but also a cozy affair. Light your fireplace and candles, use lamps instead of overhead lights, antd have some great music playing in the background. And lastly, please don’t fret over spills—a house is made to be used; that’s what it’s there for after all. lindsey herod Lindsey Herod heads up a Houston outpost of Palm Beach- and New York-based Kemble Interiors, Inc. She graduated from Texas A&M University with a degree in architecture and Pratt Institute with a master’s in interior design.

november/december • 2014


Recipes from the

Lia Huber




As holiday menus continue to feature triedand-true recipes, consider inviting the vineyard to your table. Chefs at wineries all over the world share with us some of the dishes they’re serving among the vines—and don’t forget to pour a glass to sip while you cook!

Wine-glazed Mushroom and Goat Cheese Crostini courtesy of Bonterra Organic Vineyards serves 8

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and swirl in 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil. When oil is warm, add 2 pounds cremini mushrooms (sliced), 1/4 cup shallot (diced), 1 tablespoon rosemary (minced) and 5 cloves garlic (minced) and toss to coat with oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste and cook mushrooms for 8-10 minutes, tossing occasionally, until they have released their liquid and the liquid has evaporated. The mushrooms should have a slight golden-brown tinge to them, and there should be a good crust developing on the bottom of the pan. Pour in 1/2 cup merlot and use a stiff spatula to scrape up the crust on the bottom of the pan. Continue to cook and scrape for 3-4 minutes, until the liquid is gone and the mushrooms are a deep golden-brown. Thinly slice and on a cookie sheet toast baguette (approximately 16 slices). Let cool slightly and smear each slice with goat cheese (about 4 ounces in total) and top with a spoonful of mushrooms. Arrange all on a platter and scatter with finely chopped parsley.

november/december • 2014


Pancetta Wrapped Salmon with Pesto Whipped Potatoes courtesy chef John Adamson and Amici Cellars serves 4

Basil Pesto In a large pot bring 4 quarts of salted water to a rolling boil. Fill a medium-sized bowl with ice water and set aside. Plunge 2 bunches fresh-picked basil leaves and 1 bunch Italian parsley into the boiling water and stir once, making sure the all of the basil and parsley leaves are blanched. Pour into a colander to drain. Immediately plunge the leaves into the ice bath and cool completely. With a lint-free cloth, squeeze the basil and parsley of as much water as possible, making sure that they are very dry. Roughly chop the herbs and place into a blender with 1 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Add 1 medium clove of garlic and 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts. Pulse the blender 3 to 4 times. (If the pesto is not blending easily, add additional olive oil.) Run the blender for about 20 seconds, or until all ingredients are well blended. When the pesto is combined, remove it from the blender to a bowl and fold in 1/2 cup finely grated parmesan cheese. Cover the pesto tightly with plastic wrap and keep refrigerated. (Note: store-bought pesto can also be used, but the salt content of the pesto will likely be higher so adjust the seasoning of the potatoes and salmon accordingly.)



Salmon Lightly salt and pepper 4 salmon fillets (5-6 ounces each, skinned and pin boned). Carefully wrap 2 slices pancetta (sliced 1/16-inch thick) around each fillet. Place a stainless steel or nonstick sautĂŠ pan over medium-high heat. When the pan has been heated, add 3 tablespoons olive oil and wait for a slight smoky haze to rise from the pan. Immediately add the salmon. Cook the salmon for approximately 3 to 4 minutes on each side or until the pancetta has crisped. Continue to cook the salmon, turning until it is crisp on all 4 sides. Place 4 medium russet potatoes (peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces) in a small stainless steel pot and completely cover with salted, cold water. Bring to a simmer and cook uncovered for about 15 minutes, or until tender. In a separate saucepan, bring 1 cup heavy cream to a simmer. Drain the potatoes and add them to the scalded heavy cream. With a potato masher, combine the potatoes with the cream and continue to mash until smooth. Add salt and white pepper to taste. Fold in 1 cup pesto until it is well blended. Place the pesto whipped potatoes on a warmed plate and top with the pancetta wrapped salmon.

Amici Cellars

november/december • 2014


Pork Loin with Burst Grapes courtesy of Bonterra Organic Vineyards serves 6

to oven. Roast for 15 minutes and scatter 3 cups red grapes (de-stemmed), 1 cup shallot (peeled and sliced lengthwise) and 2 sprigs fresh thyme around the skillet. Continue to roast the pork for another 10-20 minutes, until a thermometer poked into the thickest part reads 150 F. Remove pork from the oven to a cutting board, tent with foil and let rest for 15 minutes before slicing. Transfer pan with grapes to the stove over medium-high heat and boil for 5 minutes, pressing gently on the grapes until some burst and sauce thickens slightly. Remove thyme stems from pan. Slice pork and spoon grapes and sauce over top.

Lia Huber

Pound 3 cloves garlic (peeled) to a paste in a mortar and pestle with a pinch of salt and grind of pepper. Add 2 tablespoons fresh thyme and continue to pound to a paste. Mix in 1 teaspoon ground allspice, 1 teaspoon coriander and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Rub mixture over 2.5 pound boneless pork loin roast. Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours (or overnight). Preheat oven to 400 F. Rub pork with an additional pinch of salt. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and swirl in 1 tablespoon olive oil. Sear pork roast on all sides, about 3-5 minutes total, and transfer pan



Winter Beets with Wild American Hackle Roe courtesy of Jordan Winery serves 12

Pre-heat oven to 425 F. In a saucepan over medium heat, combine 1 cup red beet juice (approximately 2 beets), 1/2 teaspoon aged sherry vinegar and Kosher salt to taste. Simmer for 30 seconds, remove from heat and set aside. “Bloom” 1.5 sheets gelatin by soaking the sheets in a bowl of cold water for 5 to 10 minutes

(about 1 cup, or 250mL, of cold water per sheet). Once soft, lift sheets from the cold water. Wring gently to remove excess water and stir sheets into warm beet juice until completely dissolved. Check for seasoning, strain and pour into 12 spoons or crocks, refrigerate to set. (This step may be completed the day prior to serving.)

While gelée is setting, toss 2 Chioggia beets (scrubbed and trimmed) in 1 tablespoon grape seed oil to coat. Cover the bottom of a small heavy sauté pan with 1 cup coarse salt. Bury the beets halfway and roast in the 425 F oven until easily pierced with a paring knife (45 minutes-1 hour). Allow the beets to cool to the touch. Rub the skins off with

a kitchen towel, slice thinly, brush with 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil, season with kosher salt and reserve. Once each spoon of gelée is set, stack two slices of the roasted beet and top with Hackleback Sturgeon Roe (2 ounces total). Garnish with crème fraîche (1/4 cup total), fresh chopped chervil and chives.

november/december • 2014


Your backyard view should look like this.

It begins at Cordova on Canyon Lake where the Dream starts to take shape.

Come Home

to Texas Waterfront Living. Schedule your personal tour today.

800-400-0057 x221 www.CordovaOnCanyonLake.com

holiday tabletop tour

Tabletop Triumphs Photography | Silahis Loyola

The creative holiday spirit can come in many shapes and sizes. This was the case at the “2013 Deck The Tables Holiday Tabletop Tour” held at the Houston Design Center. The event showcased spectacular tabletop designs from some of Houston’s top interior designers. Many of the designs incorporated luxury brands such as Baccarat, Bernardaud, Christofle and Lalique. We rounded up some of our favorite extravagant tabletops to share and inspire you this holiday season.

designer: Connie LeFevre & The Design House staff november/december • 2014


holiday tabletop tour

Christmas in a Barn

showroom: Design House designer: Connie LeFevre & The Design House staff company: Design House, Inc. Inspiration: The barn doors started the project and the use of the antique screen with window allowed a view of the “outdoor” tree. The play off this shows even with the barn doors you can create luxury and warmth. The places are set with vintage Limoges china, and complimented with Christofle Malmaison flatware and Italian pewter stemware. Green pears glazed in the old sugar method accent the green and white theme. And the whole scene is set off by the luxurious Niermann Weeks chandelier of rustic iron with crystal beads, and topped with a “ceiling” of branches. designhousetx.com



holiday tabletop tour

Simply Elegant

showroom: Teri Pugh Studio designer: Teri Pugh & Regina Gust company: Teri Pugh Studio inspiration: This divine tabletop was inspired by a floating cloud of baby’s breath above a setting of Bernardaud porcelain dinnerware surrounded by Christofle flatware and candlesticks. An array of winter white roses completed the look. Simply put… simply elegant. teripughstudio.com

november/december • 2014


holiday tabletop tour

Vintage Silver & Gold

showroom: Dauphin Sales designer: Melanie Brown, Jill Winterhalter & David Barrera company: Dauphin Sales, Inc. inspiration: The inspiration was our well-loved vintage pieces and a silver and gold theme. The sterling silver flatware was Melanie’s passed down from her mother. The china was David’s wedding china, Lenox Tuxedo. He also provided the gold leafed terra cotta chargers. dauphinsales.com



holiday tabletop tour

Midori Green

showroom: Charles Ray & Associates designer: Missy Stewart company: Missy Stewart Designs inspiration: This holiday table is a mix of old and new. Missy wanted to use her mother’s china and flatware which she grew up. To put a modern spin on the timeless setting, she brought in the contemporary Midori green. missystewartdesigns.com

november/december • 2014



Brenlee McKnight

the prime living guide to discerning taste

inside: Holley’s ‘Sir Lancelot’

38 • Table Talk Dining News 41 • Uncorked SPARKLING EFFERVESCENCE 42 • Main Dish Reeling It in at Holley’s 44 • Bragging Bites Confection Perfection 46 • Entertain Gatsby Inspired november/december • 2014


connoisseur table talk

>> For the Stephen Pyles Worshipper

New and wild {DALLAS}

>> For the Seafood Adventurer

Mexican coast escape {HOUSTON}

Chef Hugo Ortega and Tracy Vaught’s newest venture, Caracol, translates to “edible snail found on the Mexican coasts” but this menu stretches into a vast land of seafood, poultry, beef and pork. The glamorous window-wrapped space is open and lofty. The Mexican seafood is vibrant with selections ranging from conch ceviche to expertly grilled dishes cooked in the fragrant wood-burning oven such as butterflied snapper and chargrilled beef with ancho sauce. Fish tacos, seafood soups and a variety of antojitos also beckon. Don’t miss the unique rhubarb and strawberry empanada dessert! caracol.net



>> For the health nut

Truly Epicurean

{Houston} Phoenix-based Fox Restaurant Concepts’ True Food Kitchen recently opened its first Houston location in BLVD Place. Expect a modern menu of healthy food influenced by Mediterranean, Asian and Californian cuisine. The Kitchen’s menu concept closely adheres to the principles of celebrity M.D. Andrew Weil’s antiinflammatory diet. The vast, stimulating choices include salads like Thai green papaya with avocado, kelp noodle and mint, or Mediterranean chopped salad with quinoa, feta, sprouted almonds and lemon vinaigrette. Perfect for fall is the piquant Panang curry with brown rice, broccoli, veggies and coconut shellfish broth. Lasagna even goes healthful with turkey, spinach, ricotta and organic tomato; ditto the grass-fed bison burger or quinoa burger. Everything sounds so enticing; you’ll find it hard to choose and difficult to believe you are eating healthfully. truefoodkitchen.com robin barr sussman BIO Robin Barr Sussman is a Houston-based freelance writer who specializes in food, wine and travel. Her work has appeared in Texas Monthly, My Table, and Private Clubs magazine.

Julie Soefer | Paula Murphy | Kevin Marple | True Food Kitchen

Restaurateur-celebrity chef Stephen Pyles has transformed the former Samar restaurant into San Salvaje, a casual, high-energy restaurant inspired by the cuisines and cultures of Mexico, Central and South America, the Caribbean and Cuba. San Salvaje (“wild saint”) celebrates the union of pagan indigenous culture with a host of saints revered in Latin America. The dining room features an exhibition kitchen with counter seating, a full bar and lounge. Outside, expect an expanded patio with seating, a bocce ball court, and large area for live music and dancing. Lunch on ceviche, black bean soup, steak tacos with chimichurri, or the chicken-cherry mole tamale. Dinner brings a larger menu with crab arepas and pulled pork empanadas. The wine list showcases South American varietals and traditional Latin cocktails such as the Chicha Morada, a Peruvian drink made from purple corn, pineapple and spices and is infused with Pisco, a grape brandy produced in winemaking regions of Peru and Chile. sansalvaje.com

connoisseur table talk

>> For the Weekend Warrior

Searsucker brunch {AUSTIN}

Side Sips events you can’t miss

Just like the seersucker fabric—for which it is named—this restaurant is relaxed but also dressed up. There’s a feel-good vibe at the Austin outpost of this New American classic. The restaurant is upping its weekend game with a new three-course prix fixe Sunday Supper menu. Additionally, Sunday brunch has been extended to an all-day affair with a menu boasting green eggs and ham with pork belly on brioche or Cowboy Steak with horseradish-black pepper hollandaise. Love biscuits? Try the duck fat biscuit and gravy or top it with a chicken-fried steak. Searsucker also has your sweet tooth covered with treats such as Granny Apple Crisp with cheddar cookie crumble and vanilla gelato. Let’s do brunch! searsucker.com

>> For the Asian food fanatic

Umai Mi | Meadowood | Searsucker | Departure Lounge

Dady does it again

{SAN ANTONIO} Umai Mi recently opened in north San Antonio and is the brainchild of hotshot chef Jason Dady, known for a collection of culinary successes. The modern Asian eatery delivers a wildly vibrant ambiance that is fun and inviting. Dady creates dishes with flavors that are clean and uncomplicated but still intriguing. Start with the shrimp rolls, which are garlicky and crisp or the deviled eggs spiced with Sriracha. Wash them down with the grilled pineapple-garnished Singapore Sling cocktail. More substantial small plates to consider include Texas quail with sweet corn; umami bomb wagyu sirloin with shitake and bok choy, or chilled Jasmine, smoked trout and pickled peach. For dessert, Thai ice coffee cake with cardamom and vanilla crema is the bomb. umaimisa.com

>> For the hip wine lover

Departure from the norm {AUSTIN}

Located in downtown Austin, the new Departure Lounge is not only a chic coffee and wine bar, but also is a place to explore travel. The menu features exceptional global coffee, artisan chocolates, Antonelli’s cheese plates and other international cheeses, local pastries and sandwiches. The boutique wine list of 80-plus selections has been carefully curated in-house to allow guests to explore various regions spanning the world. Departure Lounge also offers an interactive wine list (seen on the multiple iPads throughout the space), organized by region or type, allowing guests to select a wine based on a variety of factors. departurelounge.com

Celebrate the spirit of the holidays with the Twelve Days of Christmas at Meadowood Napa Valley, Dec. 5-20. For the guest chef dinner series, 12 influential chefs from around the country will be cooking in collaboration with James Beard award-winning Meadowood chef Christopher Kostow, and 12 legendary vintners will supply the wine pairings. The impressive lineup of national chefs includes John and Maggy Kongsgaard of Kongsgaard, Napa Valley; Virgilio Martinez of Central and Lima, London; Grant Achatz of Alinea, Chicago; and more. meadowood.com The annual Tamales! Holiday Festival, a celebration of tamales, music and culture, takes place Dec. 6 at Pearl Brewery, San Antonio. Sample delicacies from more than 40 tamale makers such as paletas, snacks, beers and fine tequilas. atpearl.com.

november/december • 2014




JKCHOCOLATE.com • 214-350-0427 •

connoisseur uncorked



fermentation in the tanks and let it start again in the bottles. This made for disappointing wine, especially compared to those of Burgundy to the south, and no small number of shattered bottles. It was Dom Pérignon who, once a stronger bottle had been devised with a pressure-resistant cork, by legend tasted the finished product and declared he was “drinking stars.” Today, virtually every Champagne that Story | John DeMers people boast of drinking—including Dom Pérignon, of course, but also Veuve Clicquot or every Texan who’s ever engaged in this Ponsardin, Moët & Chandon, Perrier-Jouët conversation—“Wanna Coke?” “Sure.” and others—actually is from Champagne. For “What kind?” “Dr Pepper”—there’s really all the carelessness of our usage, which wraps only one rule regarding those bubbles you the cheapest bubbles from the cheapest places sip this holiday season. Champagne is the under this cloak of respectability, nothing sparkling wine of the Champagne region of has changed that central fact. Truth is, there France. Everything else is, and should always are many real Champagnes, and all the real be called, sparkling wine. Champagne houses produce products of Coke is not a generic name, and neither is several flavor profiles and, thankfully, price Champagne. And while I’m happy to live in points. If you prefer it, you never have to America—with our much-beloved freedom drink Champagne that isn’t. to say the most wrong thing we can think of, On the other hand, in addition to some rather than, say, in the legalistic European world-class sparkling wines from California— Union—calling our bubbles by their correct Schramsberg and Iron Horse always pop into name might be a good start along the road to my head—at least two European variants have both understanding and enjoying them more. won a permanent place at my table. Cava is If you dig back far enough, the winemakers the Spanish version produced almost entirely of the Champagne region—including one in the Catalonian region near Barcelona—its monk named Dom Pérignon—were actually name, ironically, now protected by laws of trying to get rid of the bubbles that formed geography and production method much as from carbon dioxide in their wine, a final Champagne is protected. indignity born of a climate so cold it stopped Prosecco is the Italian version, and now


protected as well. While cava is a sparkling wine made by the methode champenoise in the Cava region of Spain, prosecco is made by the less-expensive chamat method in northern Italy. Affordability helped with its introduction to the world, especially as it joined seasonal white peach juice in the original Bellini created in Venice by Harry Cipriani. With greater and greater quality, however, prosecco has learned to release its own bubbles into the festive holiday air.

Kir Royale 1/2 ounce crème de cassis 4 oz. Mumm Lemon peel, for garnish

In a chilled champagne flute, pour 1/2 ounce crème de cassis. Top with champagne and garnish with a lemon twist.

John DeMers John DeMers is the author of 52 published books and host of the Delicious Mischief radio show heard weekly in Houston, Dallas, Austin and San Antonio. He divides his time between Houston and Marfa.

november/december • 2014


connoisseur main dish

Chef Mark Holley


it in at


Story | Robin Barr Sussman Photography | Brenlee McKnight


or two years, chef Mark Holley took road trips to Austin, New Orleans, Atlanta, Charleston and New York to research restaurant trends, themes and locations. He learned that the Southern food he grew up cooking with his mom, is what’s hot around the nation.



His new Midtown restaurant, Holley’s, combines culinary techniques that have influenced him through the years. “I’m classically trained by the French and Italians and Creole-ized by working at Brennan’s, so I’ve combined these styles at Holley’s along with Pan American dishes I was known for at Pesce,” Holley says. You could call Holley’s Seafood Restaurant and Oyster Bar his life gumbo. Witness a southern slant with homey touches like Hoppin’ John black-eyed peas, corn grits, Parkerhouse dinner rolls with pimiento dip and Down South Coconut Layered Cake. The Creole style rings true with seafood gumbo and blackened redfish. An elegant wildly popular dish of steamed mussels and cockles (small saltwater clams), is deliciously French with its butter-herb-Vermouth marinière sauce. Magically, there are no bad tables, and gracious general manager Paul Ramirez makes you feel like you can linger over dinner. It seems like every table is enjoying a bottle of wine—as if to say “why not make every day a special occasion?” The Lancelot Room is a casual, roomy oyster bar with a cocktail bar sporting more than 20 bourbons, southern caviar, and a chalkboard oyster and bar menu. The specialty cocktail, Sir Lancelot named after Holley’s father, is a stout mix of cherry infused bourbon, rye whiskey and lime juice. The main dining room is larger with lofty ceilings and a chef ’s table that faces the semi-open kitchen. Starters are sumptuous with all the right touches and no shortage of bold flavors—you could make a meal of these. Don’t miss the Texas Barbecue Shrimp, huge tender chargrilled shrimp atop Texas toast brightened with julienned jicama, red bell pepper and Chipotle

Mop sauce. The crab cake—a towering beauty full of fresh crab and no discernible filler or breading—is also stellar, served with a heady white wine sauce (Texas Duchman Vermentino cream) and tart fried pickles. Dark roux gumbo is lavished with fried oysters, Gulf shrimp, smoked duck and parsley rice. Lighter is the delicate Fish in a Jar ceviche with orange rind and orange milk. Dinner entrees get complex and filling, with seafood dishes such as the Crispy Redfish with bourbon smoked short ribstuffed agnolotti pasta and peach pickle, or the dramatic whole Thai-style Fried Snapper for two served with kimchi greens. One highlight, though, is simpler but divine: Grilled Fish of the Day. Ours was amberjack, a meaty tasty catch you don’t see often, cooked to perfection and served with a jumble of charred carrots, Brussels, caramelized sweet shallots and okra. Carnivores dig the cunning combination of chicory-dusted beef tenderloin with corn grits and dandelion ravioli. You will not leave hungry. Sweet memories of Brennan’s come out to play with desserts created by its former pastry chef Melissa Piper Riley. The mouthmelting Down South Coconut Layered Cake with cream cheese frosting and crunchy pecans is the big seller, but Key lime cheesecake with a decadent nutgraham crust and raspberry coulis is heavenly. Look for the chef’s famous Sunday Fried Chicken Dinner soon. The recipe for crispy wellseasoned chicken is his mother’s, who is from Georgia. It doesn’t get much better than that. holley’s seafood & oyster bar 3201 louisiana st. houston (713) 491-2222 holleyshouston.com

Holley’s Muddled Stew

connoisseur main dish

Sir Lancelot

Crispy Redfish

Fish in a Jar

Moules & Cockles Mariniere (serves 4) Ingredients 16 live mussels, scrubbed and rinsed 12 live cockles, scrubbed and rinsed 1 tablespoon grape seed oil 1 tablespoon garlic, minced 1 tablespoon shallots, chopped 1/4 cup sweet vermouth 3 tablespoons unsalted butter 1/8 teaspoon lemon juice, freshly squeezed 1/8 teaspoon lime juice, freshly squeezed 1 tablespoon basil, chopped 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt 1 teaspoon pepper, freshly ground

Chicory-dusted Beef Tenderloin

Down South Coconut Cake

Instructions In a small sauté pan over medium-high heat, add garlic, shallots and oil. Sauté for 1 minute. Add cockles and mussels and continue to sauté for 2-3 minutes. Next, add white wine to deglaze. Cover and simmer for an additional 3 minutes, letting shellfish open. Remove and discard any unopened cockles or mussels. Stir in lemon, lime, basil and butter to combine. Season with salt and pepper, divide (with liquid) among four shallow bowls and serve hot. Note: Cockles are small saltwater clams and are available at larger area markets selling seafood.

Crab Cake

november/december • 2014


connoisseur Bragging Bites

confection perfection f

Story | Robin Barr Sussman

or many of us, holidays and celebrations just aren’t the same without a specialty cake for dessert. Tortes, the German word for cake, are a scrumptious favorite made of fanciful cake layers sometimes laced with ground nuts and paved in satiny icing. Here are three chocolate fantasies worth dieting for. Which one takes the cake? Grab a fork!



connoisseur Bragging Bites

IAN COLE | The Dessert Gallery | Sweetish Hill Baker

Dreamy La Duni

Hailed as “the best place to share dessert” by many Dallas food experts, pastry chef and co-owner Dunia Borga turns out European inspired treats from her La Duni Baking Studio that are out-of-bounds delicious. Her flourless chocolate torte is the ideal glutenfree midnight chocolate fix. It looks dense but it melts in your mouth and is artistically crowned with a gorgeous handmade chocolate leaf. During the holidays, she sprinkles each torte with 24-karat edible gold dust. Borga’s philosophy behind this extravagance? “Spoiling yourself should not be a luxury but as natural as leaves on a tree. And it should be done everyday,” Borga says. She maintains it’s easy to make the chocolate leaf garnish. “You brush the back part of a leaf that has veins—like mint or a lemon leaf— with melted chocolate. Once the chocolate is dry, peel it off and you have a perfect chocolate leaf in your hands,” Borga says. And the perfect torte in your mouth. La Duni Baking Studio McKinney 4264 Oak Lawn laduni.com

Dessert Shrine

The Dessert Gallery ushers in specialty cakes and tortes every year for the holidays and home entertaining. This towering awardwinning Texas Truffle Torte is a beloved favorite. “It was created for a charitable event back in 1995 where we won Best of Show. The combination of bourbon-laced whipped ganache, silky dark chocolate and toasted pecans proved to be irresistible,” owner Sara Brook says. Showy and glossy painted in homemade dark chocolate ganache, the multiple layers inside the torte are super moist with an intensely flavored bourbon-laced truffle filling. Yes, there’s lots of butter and cream involved. The swoon-worthy, large handmade truffles that crown the torte are crafted with semisweet chocolate, bourbon and big toasty pecans. “Dark chocolate, a hit of bourbon and toasted pecans make this the epitome of a Texas treat,” Brook says. Dig in!

Dessert Gallery Houston 3600 Kirby Drive dessertgallery.com

Sweetish Delight

For more than 30 years, Sweetish Hill Bakery has been wowing Austinites with enchanting specialty cakes, breads and other sinful sweets. Its signature Prinz Tom torte made of chocolate, mocha buttercream frosting and toasted almonds is divine. It’s a must-have treat for the holidays, and it sells out fast—so place your orders now. The moist and rich chocolate cake is made with high-quality dark Belgian chocolate. The icing is mocha buttercream with no small hint of espresso. “It’s the same espresso that we prepare for our coffee beverages, so it definitely has a kick,” retail manager Jacob Boles says. The torte is paved in toasted almond slivers, which also appear inside the many layers of this decadent masterpiece, adding another dimension of nutty flavor. Finally, the cake is garnished with dark chocolate espresso beans. Prinz Tom torte for breakfast, anyone?

Sweetish Hill Bakery Austin 1120 West 6th Street sweetishhill.com

november/december • 2014




“And I like large parties. They’re so intimate. At small parties there isn’t any privacy.”

gatsby Inspired

— F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby


Styling | grit+gold

Find roaring twentiesinspired cocktail recipes on




Photography | Lauren Peele

raw inspiration for your next holiday event from the extravagant parties that were thrown in the twenties. Think vintage bottles, feathers and pearls for decor that exudes glamour and opulence. It’s all about fashion and décor, so be sure to ask your guests to step back in time when selecting their attire. Consider a decadent cake decorated with gold daises, and don’t forget the classic cocktails in vintage highball glasses. Have plenty of bubbly on hand and your guests are sure to have a roaring good time!


Color me gold Add gold glitter or flakes to your table to give it that pop of sparkle and luxury.

Accessories Make the Table Pull together vintage glass vases along with antiqued framed photos or quotes from The Great Gatsby. Shimmer & Shine Nothing exudes opulence more than a chandelier. Hang them (large or small) around the yard or on your table.


the goods Design/ Coordination Grit + Gold gritandgoldweddings.com

Photography Lauren Peele Photography laurenpeelephotography.com

Floral Design Stems of Dallas stemsofdallas.com

Makeup + Hair Ms Painted Lady

Humidor a plenty Cigars and cognac are must-haves for a 1920s party.


Rentals Shag Carpet shag-carpet.com

Rent My Dust rentmydust.com

Jazz it Up Music-inspired decor of any kind will create visual interest and serve as a talking point.

Suite 206   suite206.com

november/december • 2014


gentlemen’s room

For the man who commands the very best


50 52 53 54 55 56

• • • • • •

Man Cave Smoke Gets in Your Eyes Driver’s Seat Bentley with an Attitude cigar notes World Class High Tech Happy High-Tech Holidays Great Outdoors Quail Frenzy style Head Turning Watches

november/december • 2014


gentlemen’s room man cave

smoke gets in your eyes W

hen Kenneth McClure thinks about cigars, he thinks “celebration.”

McClure is the vice president of Hospitality Holdings, a New York City-based enterprise that owns and operates a number of public-focused venues and businesses that, according to the company slogan, are among “New York’s most refreshingly civilized places to meet.” One of the most prominent among them is the Carnegie Club. A smoking man’s man cave to end all smoking mens’ man caves, this cocktail and cigar lounge par excellence is so-named because it sits midtown on 56th Street, directly behind New York’s legendary Carnegie Hall. The Carnegie Club might currently be the most high-profile smoking club in New York City, but it’s certainly not the first. The



city has a long tradition of plush private warrens festooned with fine draperies and dark mahogany, exclusive clubrooms where captains of American industry baptized big deals with the clink of glasses and the curling smoke of fine cigars. Since it opened its doors in 1996, The Carnegie Club has been actively recreating that tradition—albeit with a few distinctions. For one, the club is open to the public. “We like to give the public a private-club experience,” McClure explains of the Carnegie’s operating principle. Another difference is that the club welcomes women into its smoky confines. Stepping into the Carnegie Club feels,

as a native New Yorker might describe it, “like a million bucks.” Amid a decidedly gothic architectural milieu, patrons can sink relaxingly into a plush leather Chesterfield sofa, order a skillfully crafted premier cocktail and then select a rich, expertly rolled cigar from among the dozens the Carnegie Club offers its guests. And, make no mistake about it—at the Carnegie Club, the cigar is front and center. Gazing down from the club’s loft-like mezzanine level, one’s eyes fall upon a 15-foot-tall octagonal humidor that sits prominently in the center of the softly lit chamber. Showcased inside are some of the world’s most desirable cigars from cigar makers such as Davidoff and cigar-centric countries such as Honduras, Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic. The room’s mood completes itself with ornate, hand-carved 18th-century bookcases and woodwork fashioned from reclaimed wood. Brass lighting fixtures illuminate a broad marble bar, and the club’s 20-foot-high

Hospitality Holdings

Story | Bruce Farr

gentlemen’s room man cave

the essentials While few of us have the advantage of being able to stroll into the Carnegie Club for a cocktail and cigar at every whim, here are a handful of essential ingredients to adorn your own private smoke-lounge man cave with: 1. HUMIDOR. No other artisan fashions one with the handcrafted quality of an American-made Vanderburgh. The company’s classic hand-carved humidors showcase the artistry of nature’s noblest material, natural woods, through simple lines and impeccable woodworking. vanderburghhumidors.com


Xikar | Vanderburgh Humidors


ceilings offer a sense of airy spaciousness. But the classic décor is only a part of what the Carnegie Club provides its guests: Every Saturday night for the past 17 years, the club has recreated that smoky, 1940s and 50s nightclub ambiance with an ever-popular “Sinatra” cabaret show, featuring “Old Blue Eyes” interpreter Steve Maglio and an 11-piece orchestra. “It transports you back to the experience of a bygone era,” McClure notes. At its heart, however, as McClure describes it, the Carnegie Club is “about the ritual of smoking a cigar. Unlike cigarettes, a cigar has a ritualistic, celebratory feel to it. Whether you’re closing a business deal or celebrating an anniversary, there’s something unique about the experience.”

2. CIGAR CUTTER. That premium Macanudo you’ve been waiting to enjoy deserves a quick, decisive cut from a tool precisely designed for just that. XIKAR known for exceptionally engineered performance of cigar accessories introduces the Pavé X Noir. Featuring XIKAR’s iconic teardrop shape, this cutter is ion plated and adorned with strikingly beautiful black cubic zirconia stones for a luxurious look. The ultimate accessory for the distinguished cigar smoker who wants a quality cut. xikar.com HYGROMETER. The PuroTemp™ Wireless Hygrometer System makes it easy to monitor the humidity and temperature inside your humidor without having to open it. This hygrometer alters you if conditions are outside desired levels. It has a guaranteed accuracy within 2 percent, right out of the box (no calibration needed) and reads remotes within a 60-foot range. xikar.com 3. LIGHTER. The new Triple Jet Table Top line of lighters features beautiful finishes on metal casing. Each lighter uses a squeeze ignition with an inversion safety and is easily adjusted with a fuel adjustment wheel. Sleek, sexy and stylish, this lighter is an essential focal point for any smoke lounge man cave. xikar.com

1 november/december • 2014


gentlemen’s room driver's seat

bentley attitude with


entley’s new Continental GT V8 S has more attitude, both inside and out. For starters, a twinturbocharged 4.0-liter V8 that delivers 521 horsepower and 502 lb-ft of torque at just 1,700 rpm helps ensure that two-andhalf tons of fun moves out with extreme prejudice. (Bentley says the convertible will do 0 to 60 in 4.5 seconds.) ZF 8-speed automatics are becoming downright ubiquitous and, given that Bentley is owned by Volkswagen, it’s neither a surprise nor a compromise that the “S” runs one of these state-of-the-art transmissions and sends power to all four wheels with a bias toward the rear. With its 10 mm lower stance, stouter shocks and



Mark VII and Buick Riviera. Time for a reboot, Detroit? Our evaluation Continental GT V8 S drop-top was relatively basic (for a Bentley) with $17,265 in options. Of the 18 add-ons, the major-ticket items consisted of adaptive cruise control, rear-view camera and valet key as part of a “convenience specification” ($3,920); sports exhaust ($2,480); dark-tint front and rear lamps ($1,735) and front seats with massage and ventilation ($950). We’d pass, though, on the $1,035 neck warmer and just hit the switch to put the top back up. With destination charges and a $1,000 gas-guzzler tax, the Bentley’s bottom line came to $237,190. jeff yip Jeff Yip’s work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, San Jose Mercury News, Houston Chronicle and the New York Times, as well as consumer and trade magazines. He’s a second-generation car guy who still has the 1969 Chevy his dad loved.


is a personal luxury car in the spirit of another, American-born, Continental, the Lincoln Mark VII and VIII. The formula is practically sacred: take a powerful V8, stuff it under a stylish body stretched long enough for occasional double-dating or a faithful pooch and pamper anti-roll bars, front splitter for occupants with refinement better aerodynamics (not just rivaling a suite at a Waldorf. In for show when the factory puts our allotted days with the “S,” the top speed at 191 mph) and exclusive 20-inch wheels, the “S” we wrung out the Bentley on back roads and cruised interstates designation might as well stand marveling at the delicious sounds for swagger. emanating from the chromed When, out of the blue, we quad/figure-8 exhaust tips when received an email from Bentley those 521 horses are called upon Motors headquarters in Virginia inviting us to be the foster parents and how well it handled the twisties considering its broadto one of these “factory tuner” shouldered bulk. While the Continental GTs, we had no iconic art deco “flying B” Bentley warning that our test car’s sheet badge on the hood to the revered metal would not only wear a Breitling chronograph nestled retina-searing hue that Bentley in the instrument panel were calls St James Red, the cabin constant reminders of Bentley’s was a cocoon of red and ivoryrich heritage and racing history, accented leather. So much for we also found ourselves traveling rocking a low profile. memory lane and thinking about Oh right. It’s a Bentley. former American greats like the The Continental GT V8 S

If you’re looking to make a grand entrance (or exit) doing the holiday party circuit this season, your sleigh has arrived.

gentlemen’s room cigar notes

World Class Life is a fleeting glance and taste of beauty. We honor it... in all its forms. Ora Vivo is our salute. –Armand Assante


Ora Vivo

rmand Assante is an accomplished actor who has appeared in more movies than I can count, some notable films are “Judge Dread,” “Gotti,” “American Gangster,” and “The Mambo Kings,” I could fill this space with his body of work. One thing many of his characters have in common is cigars, and this is because Armand Assante is truly a cigar lover. Somehow he managed to fit partnering in a cigar brand into his busy schedule. Mr. Assante partnered with Victor Vitale, an ultra-boutique cigar manufacturer based in Philadelphia. and Gary Macchione, a Chicago area cigar broker, to create his legacy, the Ora Vivo Armand Assante brand. Mr. Assante says: “What we wish for Ora Vivo is it to be our tribute and honor to the

Country of Origin Nicaragua

Wrapper Jalapa valley

Cigar industry’s brotherhood... of cultures. We want those nations that have created the magic of cigars to be honored together, and shared, by one, such as the one Victor and Gary and I have created.” The brand made its debut in July 2013, with the original blend having sold out, as well as the European blend. The latest release is the World Edition, of which the 6x56 is the subject of this review. The cigar is a Nicaraguan Puro, manufactured in Honduras. The blend is comprised of tobacco from three

Binder Condega

Fillers Blend of Esteli and Condega

growing regions in Nicaragua. The wrapper is from the Jalapa valley, the binder is from Condega and the fillers are a blend of Esteli and Condega tobacco. I find this cigar to be smooth, medium bodied, well balanced and refined. The flavors are sweet and earthy tobacco, and the construction is perfect and consistent as one would expect from a premium boutique cigar. The Ora Vivo Armand Assante World Edition is Armand’s tribute to the cigar industry, a cigar he truly loves, and it’s a great smoke. craig vanderslice Craig Vanderslice has been smoking cigars for nearly 20 years, and for the last five years has written about them on his website cigarcraig.com.

november/december • 2014


gentlemen’s room high tech

happy high-tech holiday


EcoReco M3 If a Segway was a little ahead of your time there are now other options for zooming around the neighborhood on an electric chariot. The EcoReco M3 is an eco-friendly, portable and smart electric vehicle, designed for an adult and everyday urban use. This e-scooter can be taken with you wherever you go: stored easily under an office desk, in a gym locker or a car trunk. It weighs 34 pounds and can be folded into a compact 3-footby-18-inch size. It is powered by a rechargeable lithium iron phosphate battery, which means zero emissions. It takes about two and a half hours to charge it to full capacity and then you are ready to go. The M3 can reach a speed of up to 20 miles per hour and can last for about 20 miles per charge. $1,000 ecorecoscooter.com prime-living.com

Swash Clothing Restorer Now why would anyone want a clothing cleaning system for a holiday gift? I argue that it is smart, innovative and can save you money year-round. If those reasons pique your interest then take a look at Swash, the new way to clean and restore your clothes at home. The Swash system is an allin-one, in-home, clothing care system, which has elements of a clothes steamer and an iron. Proctor & Gamble designed it in partnership with Whirlpool and DJI Phantom 2 Vision + it promises to make once-worn One of my favorite toys as a kid clothes wrinkle-free, smell-free and was a small, remote-controlled ready to wear in just 10 minutes. helicopter. Now that I’m grown The system works with a few up, I need a grown-up flying key technologies. Smoothing machine and the Phantom 2 clips provide the right amount Vision+ drone is at the top of of tension; a superfine mist of my list. specialized formula is sprayed onto The four-rotor drone is GPS both sides of the hanging clothes, controlled and carries a 1080p and circulated heat removes light HD camera to take great aerial wrinkles and restores the fit to shots. It is easy to operate even clothes that’s lost after wear by for first-time flyers. This newest tightening fibers without shrinking. model from DJI is Wi-Fi-enabled This is a great addition to to beam photos, videos, and flight a home, especially for those time data to your smartphone. Texas locations where sweat and Among all the quad copters humidity infiltrate most all our on the market this is one of clothes. $500 the most advanced and best swash.com integrated drones. Everything is installed and no extra system is needed; just sync it to your iOS or Android smartphone and take to the skies. $1,300 dji.com

Apps list Apps can provide useful tools and be resources to make your holiday plans easier. Here are a few of my faves: Delivery Status

Helps you keep track of all your packages so you always know when they will arrive. The main view shows the latest status of your packages, counts down to the delivery date, and shows a map of where they are.


This is a shopping browser made for shoppers. You can automatically keep track of items and store visits, create tags and lists, and it even offers recommendations.


With all of the holiday promotional emails, you need a good email app that’s essential for tracking deals from your favorite places. MailDeck has modes to autosort your promotional items and can create folders to set aside the emails that you want to follow up on.

Michael Garfield Known as “The High-Tech Texan®” to audiences nationwide, Michael hosts technology and issue-oriented talk radio shows six days a week on The 9-5-0. See what he’s up to at HighTechTexan.com.

The Procter and Gamble Company | DJI | EcoReco


f you have started to make your holiday list you might want to check it twice or even three times to see if some of your most-wanted toys are still on the shelves. It seems the cooler the gift, the harder it is to find no matter what the price is. Here is my brief list of gadgets you might want to start searching for quickly. I hope you are on Santa’s nice list.



The sun is up, but not too high. The dogs are fresh, the northerly breeze is light, and crisp air puts a confident spring in your steps.


rom a dead run, one of the dogs slams to a stop. Its head whips 90 degrees right, dead into the moving air, and its tail stands stick straight. A second pointer sees its teammate and turns to stone. The hunters walk in closely behind the dogs, fully expecting everything that’s about to happen but no more prepared this time than the previous or next. And then all hell breaks loose, when half a dozen frantic–and tasty–quail erupt from the brush like so many Roman candle shots. In roughly three seconds, experienced shooters get off clean shots and maybe knock down a

bird or two. Everyone else either misses badly or doesn’t even get a finger to the trigger. Once the dogs clean up any downed birds and everyone who needs to do so has reloaded, the dogs go back to work, and the hunters remind themselves to breathe again. In some Texas households during the past century, those old-fashioned Jack-in-the-Box toys were more; they were quailflush simulators. No matter how many times you turned that handle and listened to that silly, tinny song, the flipping lid and springing jester always made you jump at least a little.

Leave some for seed

The rule of thumb for the long-term good of any quail population is to never take all the birds from a covey. Some groups impose rules that stop at half of every covey pointed, while others only allow hunters to take two, maybe three birds per covey no matter how many lift on the original flush. Adherence to that sort of rule doesn’t ensure that drought or disease or predation won’t knock a hole in next year’s quail crop, but it gives the birds their best chance to thrive.

Quail make you flinch. Older hunters might tell you otherwise, but even those who’ve witnessed 1,000 flushes still mutter a little expletive–perhaps not even audible–when those tiny wings rocket from the cover. On the bright side, Texas does have some regions this year in which quail are doing reasonably well. On the other side, it’s not that many regions, and most of those positive notes are preceded by “despite prolonged drought conditions.” Working against hunters although not necessarily against the state’s bobwhites and blues, nearly all of Texas is private property. Unless you happen to hold the deed or lease rights where a local population happens to live where rainfall has been adequate and food is plentiful, you won’t have access to all those coveys. Devoted quail hunters don’t let a few down years pull them from the game. Instead, they tend to see their little glass as half full and look at each slow season as a step closer to a good one.

gentlemen’s room outdoors

BEFORE YOU GO... Where native-quail numbers are severely depleted, some outfitters offer hunts for penraised birds. That’s not ideal, but it’s better for some than not hunting at all. The key to any experience with pen-raised birds lies in how they were raised. The larger the containment area while they learned to fly, the more able they’ll be to get up and out of range like wild birds. Unfortunately, some quail farms hold birds in small pens, and their “flight” from beneath the dogs’ noses is lackluster at best. Before you consider handing off money to hunt pen-raised birds, ask questions about their origin.

This season will be another great one for all avid quail hunters, many of whom also will get lots of chances at lots of coveys. doug pike Doug Pike has traveled the world to satisfy his passion for the outdoors. During his career, he has won 100-plus state and national awards for writing, broadcast and photography.

november/december • 2014


gentlemen’s room style


watches DBF001-07 Limited Edition Chronograph by DuBois et fils available on duboisfils.ch/en $11,500

Transocean 38 Black Dial Steel Bracelet by Breitling available on breitling.com $5,800

Tourneau | Breitling | DuBois

Villeret 8 Day With Grand Feu Enamel Dial by Blancpain available at Tourneau $28,900


IWC Portuguese Chronograph in Red Gold by IWC available at Tourneau $16,400 prime-living.com

Close to home but far from ordinary.

Vacation time is precious. And there’s a perfect vacation spot in your own backyard. JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country lets you make the most of every minute with its wide array of amenities and attractions. Whether it’s teeing off on one of our two championship courses at TPC San Antonio, unwinding with a heated stone massage at our 26,000-square-foot Lantana Spa, or making memories as you ride down the lazy river, JW Marriott San Antonio has everything you need for the vacation you’re looking for. The best part? You don’t even have to go far to enjoy it. For reservations, please call 210-276-2500 or visit jwsanantonio.com.

©2014 Marriott International.


The Saint Paul Hotel

escape Greetings from Destinations Near and Far


60 • enlightened explorer Travel Buzz 62 • Point of Interest Deck the River Walk 64 • feature To Market, to Market: Christmas Edition

november/december • 2014


escape enlightened explorer

>> For the bon vivant

Stay, Sip & Spa

>> For the seafaring

Small Boat to Big Adventure

Asia offers a wealth of experiences and sights—ancient temples and traditions, majestic karst formations rising from turquoise waters, fascinating cultures and exotic cuisines. Starting in December, Windstar Cruises will offer new itineraries to Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore and China, guiding travelers on a voyage of discovery by sea on the luxurious yacht, Star Pride. With room for 212 passengers, the yacht is large enough to entertain, yet small enough to sail along coastlines and tuck into hidden coves and city harbors. Docked at each port for a longer amount of time than traditional cruises, the small ship gives its guests time to truly explore. Made-to-order meals from the onboard chef feature local dishes made from ingredients gathered daily in the port city, and a guest lecturer is available to answer questions and provide interesting and historical details throughout the journey. windstarcruises.com



>> For Cardinals fans

Business & Pleasure

Following a multimillion dollar renovation, the 1920s-era Mayfair Hotel recently reopened its doors as the Magnolia Hotel St. Louis. The historical character of the downtown hotel has been preserved, blending new boutique elements with the grandeur of the past. Guest rooms have a Hollywood flair that hearkens back to the hotel’s celebrity visitors, which included Harry S. Truman, Lyndon B. Johnson, Irving Berlin, John Barrymore, Douglas Fairbanks and Cary Grant, who was said to have originated the tradition of placing chocolates on a pillow while staying at the Mayfair. Near many major corporate headquarters and within walking distance of the Americas Center, Busch Stadium and other central attractions, the Magnolia Hotel St. Louis is ideal for business or personal travel. Complimentary downtown car service features the all-electric Tesla Model S. magnoliahotels.com Kathryn Hunter Kathryn Hunter is an Austin-based freelance writer whose work has appeared in Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine.

Saint Paul Hotel | Meadowood Napa Valley | Magnolia Hotel

Luxury resort Meadowood Napa Valley, owned by vintners, showcases what California’s Napa Valley is famous for: wine, of course, and also the indoor-outdoor lifestyle that is as intrinsic to the area as the grapes themselves. Activities like hiking, tennis, golf, croquet and swimming share the stage with more relaxing experiences like wine-tasting, romantic dining and in-room spa treatments. Accommodations range from cozy cottages to secluded suites among the trees and spacious lodge rooms overlooking the fairways and croquet greens. In summer 2015, the new 8,000-square-foot Meadowood Spa will be complete, featuring the latest spa innovations and a unique all-suite concept. Each of the spa’s eight suites, which provide an exclusive and spacious environment for treatments, has a private bath, a lounge area and a dedicated space for in-room tea or a light snack. meadowood.com

enlightened explorer


>> For the dreamer

Exquisite Collection

A promising newcomer in the peer-to-peer accommodation market, Le Collectionist presents one-of-a-kind vacation homes in mythical destinations around the world, from villas in Normandy and winter chalets in Switzerland to Moroccan palaces and stylish lofts in New York. Clients rent these singular residences from their individual owners, and Le Collectionist provides concierge services like on-site booking inquiries for restaurants and activities. Properties can be searched by destination, number of travelers, style of accommodation and number of bedrooms, with detailed descriptions and photo galleries available for each dream home. lecollectionist.com/en

>> For the smartphone-savvy

Windstar Cruises | Postagram | Le Collectionist

Travel Apps

An easily packed and powerful resource, a smartphone has a thousand practical and imaginative uses when on the road or overseas. Download apps that map routes, manage foreign currencies, review restaurants, translate languages and much more. Use an app like PackPoint to make customized packing lists based on trip duration, weather forecasts and activities. iPhone and iPad users can plan their trip’s fashion ensemble with Stylebook, an app that allows you to mix and match your entire wardrobe using real photos. With WhatsApp, send SMS messages to and from anywhere in the world without paying extra fees. JetSmarter lets you easily search, request and pay for private flights, and Postagram makes and mails postcards with your own travel photos. SleepSounds HQ provides the noise that helps you slumber best with 600-plus options that range from a tumbling dryer to the sound of falling leaves.

>> For the Midwest vacationer

Historic Hotel, Holiday Favorite

Built in 1910, the Saint Paul Hotel has a brand of sophistication that comes only with age—the distinction of a grand hotel that has seen thousands of guests come and go for more than a century. The lobby, with its graceful columns and chandeliers, is a uniquely elegant setting and the imposing exterior, constructed in the Italian Renaissance Revival style, has long distinguished the 254-room luxury hotel in downtown St. Paul as a Minnesota icon. The holiday season, which has its own inescapable air of romance and nostalgia, is a memorable time at the hotel. The Saint Paul will continue to host its traditional live radio play “It’s a Wonderful Life” in the Promenade Ballroom, as well as jazz performances in the Lobby Bar. Afternoon teas in the lobby, held year-round, are particularly popular in December, and The St. Paul Grill and M ST. Cafe feature special holiday menus. saintpaulhotel.com

november/december • 2014


escape point of interest

texas holiday round up


Story | Jessica Mebane


aybe you’ll entertain a houseful of guests this year at Thanksgiving, or perhaps you’ll linger over a lovely Four Seasons’ spread with just your paramour and a few friends—the reality is, once the last leftover-stuffed piece of Tupperware is handed out and the good champagne is gone, there’s no escaping the cold, hard fact that winter is coming, and with that realization: Christmas! But be of good Texas cheer, and instead of entering into the Black Friday fray, bundle yourself and head out to San Antonio’s storied River Walk for the twinkling, musical wonder of the Ford Holiday River Parade and Lighting Ceremony. Sit and enjoy the unique floats and festivities, and you’ll soon feel your holiday spirit rising.



Down the River and Across the Globe This year’s theme for the river walk festivities will celebrate “Holidays Around the World,” with each float decked out in an array of international colors, brilliant lights and trimmings, including a fearsome dragon atop the China barge, and a dedicated Texas float to represent the Lone Star state’s “whole other country-ness.” All floats are professionally decorated and designed in town, and perennial crowd favorite the Santa Float will be sponsored by Macy’s, featuring the famous “Letters to Santa” red mailbox in a prominent position. Dinner Theater Under the Lights While the River Walk is a designated free public park, for that one Friday evening you will need a ticket to attend the lighting ceremony. Fortunately, some restaurants, including Ácenar, Iron Cactus, and many others, offer a dinner package that includes tickets to enjoy the show, with a three-course, prix fixe dinner menu. If you’d like to make a weekend of it, book a stay at a hotel with a view, such as the San Antonio Marriott Rivercenter. Whatever this holiday season brings, make sure you kick it off in grand Texas style at the Ford Holiday River Parade and Lighting Ceremony.

December 13: A Sailors Christmas Join the crew aboard the Battleship TEXAS and imagine Christmas at sea, with hot wassail, coffee and cookies from the galley. One can also transmit that last-minute list to Santa from the ship’s post office. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; La Porte. December 6-20: Trail of Lights This gentle, quarter-mile stroll up La Grange’s Monument Hill bedecked with thousands of lights, culminates in a sparkling city view and tour of the splendidly decorated Kreische House. 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. every weekend before Christmas, beginning December 6; La Grange.

Darren Abate

Deck River Walk

November 29: Holiday Cookie Decorating and German Traditions Make your own decorated cookies to hang on the Christmas tree just as German settlers did a century ago. Or, if wreath and candle-making sound intriguing, head out to LBJ state park for old fashioned fun and selfies with St. Nick. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Lyndon B. Johnson State Park and Historic Site, Stonewall.

To Market, to Market:


Christmas Edition

In Europe, the holidays usher in a fairy-tale experience. What do you get when you mix a dash of handmade crafts, a pinch of historic architecture, a smidgen of chilly air, a drop of mulled wine and a whole heap of holiday joy? That’s a recipe for Europe’s famed Christmas markets. Ready, set, stroll your way through these three cities, where you’re sure to get in the snowy-season spirit.



Rasmus Hansen

Story | Haley Shapley


escape DENMARK The Experience: Celebrate in Scandinavian style in Copenhagen, where legendary amusement park Tivoli Gardens—the world’s second oldest—puts on quite a show. Amid a backdrop of Christmas trees dotting the landscape, browse 50 stalls selling décor, traditional winter clothing and warm drinks, or take a spin on the park’s many magical rides. Special guests include Father Christmas and a cohort of live reindeer. At nighttime, with thousands of fairy lights aglow, walking through the gardens is truly enchanting. Unique Find: Get a nisse ornament, inspired by the pixielike folkloric creatures who are rumored to live in barns and attics, helping take care of things for those who are nice to them. Danish children leave out a bowl of rice pudding on Christmas Eve for the nisse. Must-Tastes: The sphereshaped æbleskiver are Danish pancakes served with jam and a liberal sprinkling of powdered sugar. Pair the treats with the divine-smelling gløgg, a hot mulled wine spiced with raisins, almonds, cinnamon sticks and cloves that have been steeped in aquavit or another alcohol. tivoli.dk

while you are there With 15 Michelin-starred restaurants, Copenhagen packs a lot of fine dining into a relatively small city. Plan ahead to get a table at Noma—named Best Restaurant in the World four of the past five years by Restaurant magazine—which is famous for its reinterpretations of Nordic cuisine.

november/december • 2014


Landeshauptstadt Dresden / Sylvio Dittrich / Dresden Marketing GmbH





escape GERMANY The Experience: At Striezelmarkt, the oldest Christmas market in Germany, tradition reigns. Nearly everything has roots that date back centuries, from the crafts to the foods to the Pflaumentoffel that you’ll see everywhere—a jolly chimney sweep figure crafted from dried prunes. Another longstanding institution is the Christmas pyramid, which you’d be hard-pressed to miss. While the tiered carousel decorations are usually less than 2 feet tall, this one soars 45 feet in the air. Unique Finds: Wooden figures from the Ore Mountains (Erzgebirge in German) come in many forms, from a flying buttress that displays candles to iconic nutcrackers to a smoking man, a typical Erzgebirge Christmas figure who’s designed to hold an incense candle. The Lusatian pottery is also worth seeking out. Must-Tastes: Stollen (originally known as striezel) is the trademark food at Striezelmarkt—and its namesake. The bread-like fruitcake is made with rum-soaked raisins and dried fruit, then coated in powdered sugar. The real deal is baked only by registered members of the Dresden bakers’ guild, who follow a historic recipe. During the Stollen Festival, a several-ton version is paraded through the streets, then sliced into individual servings with a 5-foot-long knife. dresden.de

while you are there Known as the most beautiful dairy shop in the world, circa-1880 Pfund Molkerei is deserving of the title. The neoRenaissance tile paintings and intricate ceiling will mesmerize you, but don’t get too distracted to grab a bar of famous milk soap and a bite of cheese before you go.

november/december • 2014


Christophe HAMM





escape France The Experience: When you close your eyes and think of a holiday market, something like Christkindelsmärik in Strasbourg— the self-proclaimed Christmas capital—is what you’re likely to envision. The sound of carolers, the smell of buttery pastries and the sight of twinkling lights bring tidings of comfort and joy to those attending the event, which dates back to 1570. Highlights include the Great Christmas Tree in Place Kléber; the skating rink at the foot of the towering, Gothicstyled Strasbourg Cathedral; and, of course, hundreds of quaint wooden stalls lined with gifts and ornaments. It’s not all about consumerism, though. Around the tree, locals leave gifts for those who need them, and the Sharing Village includes dozens of charities collecting donations. Unique Find: A stuffed white stork is a fun souvenir—in Alsace, they’re a symbol of good luck, particularly if a pair chooses to nest on your rooftop. Must-Tastes: Try the flammekueche, also known as tarte flambée, which is like a pizza with very thin crust. It’s topped with crème fraîche, sliced onions and bits of bacon. On the sweet side, bredele cookies come in almost endless flavor and shape variations. noel.strasbourg.eu

while you are there At the Musée Alsacien, get a glimpse into the history of this fascinating region, long caught in a tug of war between France and Germany. Spread throughout multiple houses, the museum covers day-to-day life from the past through displays on clothing, food, religion, tools and more.

november/december • 2014


Holiday Wine Trail 42 Wineries December 5-21 TexasWinetrail.com

Photo Courtesy Peary Photography

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Concierge medicine

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Burn calories

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72 • Health Buzz What’s New 73 • Feel Good Backup Plan 74 • Focus & function Prime Finds 75 • Look Good Tighten Up Your Nail Game 76 • Be Good If the shoe fits november/december • 2014


live well

h ea l t h b u z z

Story | Sally j. Clasen

Making a Fitness Connection

B Free Memory Screenings Nationwide


ational Memory Screening Day is Nov. 18. As part of the public awareness event, the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (AFA) is offering free memory screenings at sites across the country. The screenings will help promote early detection and intervention for those concerned about memory loss as well as educate the public about successful aging. nationalmemoryscreening.org

y default, airports and exercise don’t mix. Travelers are rushing to make a connecting flight (via a moving walkway) or using their terminal time to grab a quick bite to offset mid-air hunger in favor of a workout. Yet, one airport is attempting to set an exercise trend in lieu of sedentary travel behaviors like watching TV, reading—and eating. In June, the Philadelphia International Airport became the first airport in the United States to provide low-impact stationary bikes for travelers to use in the terminal, free of charge, while waiting for their flights. The equipment includes 30 free-standing cycling machines with a seat and pedals. Four elliptical machines also are moved between terminals each month as a pop-up gym. So if you are making a connecting flight at PHL during the holidays, perhaps you can grab a bike instead of a cheesesteak.

Sweat: A Renewable Energy Source?


ave you ever thought about using your sweat to monitor your workout and recharge your mobile device? A research team led by Joseph Wang, a distinguished professor of nanoengineering at the University of California, has developed an innovative biosensor that can track exercise progress and produce an electrical charge for smartphones and other electronic devices. The sensor, mounted in a temporary tattoo, contains an enzyme that produces an electrical current to measure sweat lactate levels during exercise. The sweat is then used to generate power via the principles of electrons. The advantage of such “biobatteries” over traditional batteries is they recharge more quickly, use renewable energy (your sweat) and don’t explode or leak toxic chemicals, according to the researchers.

Losing Fizz: Soda Consumption on the Decline


oda sales dropped 3 percent in 2013, bringing volume to its lowest level since 1985, according to ABC News. Driven by health concerns over soda’s contents, consumers are grabbing more water and lowersugar beverage options as well as caffeinated energy drinks and coffee. Making the switch to healthier choices has been a slow fizz: Americans drank an average of 51 gallons of soda in 1998 but now drink nearly 20 percent less—44 gallons, based on data from Beverage Digest, a trade publication and data service. Diet sodas have taken a bigger hit with a 6 percent drop in sales in 2013, even though government studies suggest they are safe to drink.



Meet Teff and Millet, Your November Powerhouse Grains


eff and millet are not a comedy duo but they are in the spotlight for November as the Whole Grains Council’s featured grains of the month. The two pack a nutritional punch. Teff, a North African cereal grass, is glutenfree with a mild flavor that leads all grains by a wide margin in its calcium content. One cup of cooked teff offers 123 mg, about the same amount of calcium as in a half-cup of cooked spinach. In addition, teff is high in resistant starch, a newly-discovered type of dietary fiber that can benefit blood-sugar management, weight control and colon health. Millet describes an equally mild tasting group of small-seeded grains from the grass family Poaceae, which are gluten-free and loaded with antioxidant activity. Millet grains are especially high in magnesium, mineral which helps maintain normal muscle and nerve function. In recent years, researches also have discovered millet helps control diabetes and inflammation.

live well

backup plan f ee l good

Story | Angela Ambrose


If you’re going on a long road trip this holiday, you know the importance of planning ahead: checking the tires and brakes, changing the oil and filling up the gas tank before you get on the road. Like your car, your spine requires regular maintenance to function properly.

eople don’t realize that they have back bones and nerves that need to be serviced and taken care of. There’s no awareness until it hurts,” says Kenneth Hansraj, M.D., a New York orthopedic and spinal surgeon and author of Keys to An Amazing Life: Secrets of the Cervical Spine. The single most important factor in preventing back and neck pain is good posture, according to Hansraj. When you’re fatigued, especially during a long road trip, your shoulders, back and neck tend to round forward, placing excessive

pressure on the spine. To achieve good posture, Hansraj advises his patients to align their ears above their shoulders and retract their shoulder blades. Before getting on the road, make adjustments to your seat, steering wheel and armrests to create a more comfortable

environment that supports good posture. For added lumbar support, place a small pillow or rolled up shirt at the curvature of your lower back. “The spine is a combination of 24 precious pairs of joints, and they all need to be moved to feel good and for maintenance and preventing back pain,” Hansraj says. “They’re not meant to be in one position.” To reduce the risk of back and neck soreness, take a break from driving every couple of hours and do some spine stretches. Perform gentle back bending, toe touches, side stretches and neck range of motion exercises, including side-to-side, up-and-down and ear-to-shoulder stretches.

did you know? Four out of five Americans will experience significant back pain during their lives, according to Dr. Kenneth Hansraj. Medical costs for back and neck care topped $115 billion last year, second in frequency only to the common cold.

Just as your car operates better with preventive maintenance, so does your body. Make time for regular exercise and adequate sleep and hydration, especially in the weeks before and after the holidays when we often fuel our bodies with too many sweets and alcoholic drinks. “Spinal health is intimately connected with general health,” Hansraj says. To maintain a healthy back, he suggests engaging in three key areas of fitness: aerobic activities that elevate the heart rate, core strengthening exercises such as pushups and situps and stretching. “Deep stretching is a phenomenal way to start your day,” Hansraj says. Performing yoga poses and deep belly breathing can enhance spine flexibility and also help you relax and de-stress throughout your holiday trip. Planning ahead and performing preventive maintenance will ensure both you and your car arrive at your holiday destination in top condition.

november/december • 2014


live well

F o cus & F u n c t i o n

prime finds The season’s hottest metallic glam picks

Available on sephora.com {FOCUS} A twotoned metallic lacquer that shimmers with a kaleidoscopic effect.

Crème De La Crème Eye Shadows Available on napoleonperdis.com

{FOCUS} Smooth on a little metallic lid bling to add a holiday look to your eyes. {FUNCTION} Ultrapigmented and easy-toapply metallic shades feel velvety smooth without ever looking greasy.



Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tar/Metallic

{FUNCTION} Take your nail color to the next level with crushed microsparkles, metallic pigment. Composed of an advanced pigment technology discovered in Japan, these multidimensional lacquers impart a shade-shifting finish.

Urban Decay Heavy Metal Glitter Eyeliner Available on urbandecay.com

{FOCUS} All the glitz of glam rock without the spandex or bad hair. {FUNCTION} Thin lines can be painted with the tip of the brush, or sweeping color with the side of the brush for dramatic, jewelencrusted eyes. Once dry, they will not budge— the glitter won’t fall to your cheeks.

Available on sephora.com {FOCUS} A colorsaturated, metallic-finish lip tar. {FUNCTION} Infused with state-of-the-art metallic pigments that deliver intense shine, the opacity is an unparalleled, high-voltage color with a reflective shimmer finish.

Too Faced Bulletproof 24 Hour Eyeliner Available on sephora.com

{FOCUS} A 24-hour wear, waterproof eyeliner that allows you to line, blend, and create smoky eye looks. {FUNCTION} Go from lined to smoky-eyed in seconds with this 24hour eyeliner. This formula provides a precise, high-impact line that stays put all day.

Napoleon Perdis | sephora.com | urbandecay.com

Formula X Shifters

l o o k good


live well


up your

nail game t

KISS | CND | Zoya

hese days we’re all elevating our manicure game beyond basic lacquer and French tips. Whether you’re partial to polish, love long-lasting shellac or wedded to glue-and-go acrylics, put your best hand forward this holiday season.

1. Hard as Nails! Let’s face it—you’re going to be running more errands, logging more heavy-duty kitchen hours and packing in more party time in these few holiday weeks than you did all of 2014, so your nails might as well live up to the challenge. If you want glossy, flawless fingertips that look as lovely on the 20th day as they did the minute you had them applied at your favorite salon, go the shellac route. Creative Nail Design (aka, CND) has some of the best shellac products on the market. Because this specially formulated lacquer is applied directly to the nail in several thin coats requiring time under a UV lamp for drying, you’ll want to find a CND-pro salon to have this professionally done. Fortunately, you can enter your postal code online and find dozens of salons throughout Texas that offer this uniquely durable nail service. cnd.com

2. Natural Beauty A good manicure really gives your party rings and accessories that extra oomph, and Zoya polish goes the extra mile with both sparkly and matte shades that leave out the harsh chemicals. One of the first companies to create nail colors without formaldehyde, toluene, camphor or dibutyl phthalates, Zoya offers more than 200 natural nail polish shades to light up your fingertips on a cold winter’s night. Choose from a plummy shade called Sansa for va-va-voom drama, or a deep blue like Ryan, which lends your hands that ice princess cool. Try their Remove product as well, for easy-off color changes. zoya.com 3. Tip-top Tips and Toes! Even if you’ve worked like a squad of elves to make everyone else’s holiday perfect, maybe your nails look a little worse for wear. Acrylics are a great

way to camouflage nail bed imperfections or stubby, chewed nails to instantly look as flawlessly festive as that tree you spent hours decorating. Try Kiss Complete Salon Acrylic Nail Kit, with everything you need, including white or clear tips to change your hands from grubby to glamorous, then apply your favorite color on top. If you go the salon route, keep a few things in mind: acrylic manicures shouldn’t hurt, so make sure no one files down your natural nail too thinly before applying the tips, and conversely, don’t let anyone “pop off” your old acrylics at the next manicure. A licensed technician should use a drill or delicately hand-file the old acrylic tips down to a fine layer before soaking in acetone to carefully remove them. kissusa.com So get your glam on and make your nails as lovely as the rest of your holiday decorations this year!



did you know? For instant DIY polka-dot manicures: First apply a base coat and let completely dry, then tack a small section of a perforated BandAid bandage to your nails, paint over with white or contrasting paint and remove—voila! Snowdrop manicure!! For elongated looks: ask your nail technician for a “reverse moon” manicure to make your nails look longer.

november/december • 2014


live well

be Good




How shoes help boost a woman’s self-image more confident. of shoes, which elongates the Confidence building can legs, makes a woman feel—and The fact that Cinderella left a glass also come from receiving look— attractive. Being overweight can also have compliments, especially about our slipper is not a mere coincidence. a direct impact on how a woman shoes. Even just having someone notice a woman’s shoes can boost feels about herself. However, her self-image and especially if it’s the right pair of platforms, or a he Consumer Reports This hatred involved feelings a male who notices them. wedge sandal can give you height, National Research Center, of being too heavy or too short As young girls we are make one look thinner, and add after polling 1,057 women, as well as feeling undesirable. introduced to a female hero— sex appeal in just seconds. found that women on average However, when women were Cinderella—who loved her glass Even when women dress own 19 pairs of shoes. More than asked to rate how the clothes slippers. So, it should come as conservatively, shoes are one 40 percent of women from the in their closet made them feel no surprise that women have a accessory they can have a survey mentioned being injured and that give them the most sex love-hate relationship with their from their shoes which will most appeal with the least effort, shoes little fun with. Shoes allow shoes—one that most men will an opportunity to express a likely not surprise most women. ranked in the top two. never fully comprehend. Women more artistic side while still It will also not likely come as In a study conducted by have been looking for their glass conforming to a conservative a surprise that most men don’t Sorokowski and Pawlowski, slippers since they were just dress code. Feeling in control of understand women’s fascination women and men were asked to with shoes—why we wear a pair evaluate the attractiveness of both their image can help women feel girls! of shoes in spite of the pain they male and female silhouettes. An might cause. average height of 5 feet 4 inches In another survey done by was rated most attractive when mary jo rapini body image expert Ann Kearney- the inseam was 30.5 inches—5 Mary Jo Rapini is a Houston-based psychotherapist specializing in sex and Cooke, Ph.D., 97 percent of percent longer than the average relationships. In addition to being a speaker, author and TV personality, she shares her expert advice Tuesday mornings on Mix 96.5 and Friday women surveyed revealed that leg measurement for a person mornings on Fox 26 Houston. For information, visit maryjorapini.com. they had moments of body hate. that height. So the right pair




December 5 - 7, 2014 Tour four beautiful holiday decorated homes in the Memorial and River Oaks area. B e r g n e r & J o h n so n D e s i g n

Home Tour Florists | W alter g utierrez | h ouston F lo Wery | t he s e n t e r p ie c e

Purchase your tickets from the following retailers

a ccessory p lace area B ackroW a ntiques B erings c ornelius n ursery

c otton c luB l eonarD r utan o ut oF the B ox p aisley h ouse r ice e picurean

Special Thanks to our Sponsors

s ervice c orporation i nternational (sci) W estsiDe l exus B erings BBva c ompass W ealth m anagement chi s t . l uke ’ s h ealth


The purpose of the Kappa Kappa Gamma Charitable Foundation is to encourage and support the efforts of charitable organizations for the betterment of the community.

5th Annual Elisa Project Esteem Fashion Show


Tootsie’s Dallas • 9.13.14


Ms. Holly Pellham Davis and her daughter Landry Davis served as ESTEEM’s 2014 Co-Chairs putting on a spectacular event at Tootsies in the Plaza at Preston Center. Brendan Higgins and Amy Vanderoff of WFAA’s “Good Morning Texas” took to the stage as emcees with Nerissa Von Helpenstill, Tootsies’ store director, offering fashion commentary. Guests enjoyed organic breakfast bites, beverages and a fall fashion show. Celebrity models who walked the runway for charity included: Janine and Juliette Turner, Amy Robinson, LeeAnne Locken, Amanda Sterett Albritton, Melanie Mills, Dawn Belcher Neufeld, Jocelyn White, Courtney Kerr and Kellie Raspberry. Proceeds benefited The Elisa Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the prevention and effective treatment of eating disorders through support, awareness, education and advocacy. Photography | Joseph Brewster Photography






6 get on the list at primelist@prime-living.com 1 Jamie O’Banion and Shannon Hughes Stuart 2 Yvonne Crum 3 Emcees’ Amy Vanderoef and Brendan Higgins, Tootsies Store Director Nerissa Helpenstill and co-chairs Holly and Landry Davis 4 Bridget Frank, Rhonda Sargent Chambers, Kim Martinez, Pam Skaggs and Frank and Debbie Allbright 5 Heather Anderson and Shona Gilbert 6 Rhonda Sargent Chambers and The Elisa Project Executive Director Kim Martinez



Imperial Sugar Land Grand Opening Imperial Sugar Land • 9.14.14

VIPs gathered for the debut of three dazzling new model homes at Fort Bend’s newest exclusive neighborhood, Imperial Sugar Land. The neighborhood features an all-new style of lock-and-leave, luxury patio homes and two-story townhomes in gated lakefront community. With winding trails, lush greenbelts and a weekly farmers market, and homes from Sittlerle Homes, Darling Homes and Partners in Building, Imperial is attracting active empty-nesters and young families alike.



Photography | Steve Chenn

See More photos at Prime-Living.com

november/december • 2014





An emergency button that you press and a white gloved bellman magically appears with a glass of crisp, cold, fizzy champagne? Don’t mind if I do. Ring in the new year with the sparkling wine recipes found on pages 14 and 41. photograph courtesy of Lauren Peele




CROATIA with tailor made luxury

With its destination management Volo Luxury is able to offer you only the finest facilities and tailor made travel solutions in Croatia, including:  luxury villas rental  only five-star hotel accommodation  luxury yachts charter  private transportation  tailor made excursions  exclusive wine and food tastings

Croatia is a luxury destinations newcomer, but already a big hit with locations such as Dubrovnik or the region of Istria, well established for their unique landscapes, care for traditional arts and crafts, natural food and the best accommodation facilities. But there is more to Croatia, like its countless islands, some of which, such as Hvar, are already well established luxury holiday settings. Whatever your destination of choice in Croatia, Volo Luxury will provide you with a memorable experience, taking care of all aspects of your journey.

www.vololuxury.com info@vololuxury.com


For over 100 years and through 4 generations the greatest Cognacs in the world have quietly slept in the Tesseron family’s 12th Century cellar. Until now. Introducing Tesseron Cognac’s Signature Collection, a trio of rare Cognacs that showcases the extraordinary complexity granted by time. Tesseron Cognac XO PASSION, XO EXTRA LÉGENDE and XO TRÉSOR, available for gift-giving at finer retail stores this holiday season. Imported exlusively by


Profile for SRG Services, Inc.

PRIME Living's 2014 "Luxe" Issue  

From festive recipes to opulent tabletops, everything you need to entertain this holiday season

PRIME Living's 2014 "Luxe" Issue  

From festive recipes to opulent tabletops, everything you need to entertain this holiday season