2018’s Best Rosé Wines: What To Drink Now

Happy Rosé Season!

Pas De Merde


It’s not your imagination, rosé season starts earlier each year. Some might argue that, like Scrooge with Christmas, rosé season is meant to be honored all year long, in part because the pink wine is synonymous with laid-back days and convivial nights. “Rosé is rarely something you drink alone,” Diving Into Hampton Water co-founder Jesse Bongiovi says. “It’s really approachable. It’s not a Bordeaux or something like that, where you feel you need a real education in order to enjoy it.””When we first came up with this idea a year and a half ago, people were drinking rosé  from Memorial Day to Labor Day,” Bongiovi adds. “That time period just gets longer and longer. People now pick up rosé earlier in the spring and don’t put it down until November.”

Here is a selection of buzzy new releases to sip at your spring and summer parties. And no, you don’t have to wait until Memorial Day…

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Spring Fun With Champagne And Chocolate Lace Cookies!

It’s Spring…time to get out of the house and have some FUN!

Oatmeal Lace Cookies are THE BEST COOKIES!  Perfect for a Spring picnic.  The recipe is compliments of Gloria Smiley, Food Stylist Extraordinaire.  She served them for lunch when we visited her in Atlanta, Georgia and I didn’t want to look like a piglet, but I just could not stop eating them. They are so GOOD!  Thank you Gloria for sharing your recipe! 


        These cookies are adapted from Nick Malgieri’s Lace Cookies.  There are many variations and substitutions, such as ground nuts instead of oatmeal; maple sugar instead of regular sugar, and sandwiched with bittersweet chocolate, yum.

8 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1 cup rolled oats, finely chopped – pulse in a food processor

1 cup sugar

½ teaspoon salt

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon orange juice

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a bowl, stir together melted butter, oatmeal, maple sugar, salt, egg, vanilla extract and orange juice.  Stir until all ingredients are well incorporated.
  1. Using a½ teaspoon measure, drop the batter onto sheet pans either lined with Silpat or buttered foil.  The cookies will spread, so leave at least 2 inches between each cookie.
  1. Bake the cookies for about 8 to 10 minutes, or until they are brown around the edges.  Remove from oven and slide the Silpat or foil onto a cooling rack.
  1. When the cookies are cool, lift them off the Silpat or foil and store in between sheets of parchment or wax paper in a container with a tight fitting lid.
  1. To make sandwiches, melt 6 ounces of bittersweet chocolate and spread on the bottom side of half the cookies; then cover with another cookie, top side up.  Store in the same manner as above.


$35 on-line or locally at Wine Gourmet in Roanoke, Virginia.  What is it?!  The Chambong is used for the rapid and enhanced
experience of sparkling wine / champagne consumption.  http://www.chambong.co/about/

Here’s their story from their website…they say it’s magical!

The origins of the first Chambong came about in early 2014, during a moment preempting the Super Bowl. We had an epiphany the week prior of the big event to create a “Super…Bowl.” The resulting device of our imagination harnessed an ability to hold an extraordinary amount of cannabis, however was sadly non-functional as a smoking apparatus. Fortune would prevail several evening later, while onlookers examining the piece remarked at how it looked like a fantastic wine “shooter”.  They promptly filled it with Champagne and experienced the resulting magic…And thus was born the glory that is — The Chambong.

Pop A Ball!


These fun little balls are made in the UK. I found the peach and strawberry flavors to be delightful. I enjoyed watching the balls dance around in my glass, but the set only came with one straw which would be awkward if serving more than one flute at a time. Fun for a one time party trick if you want to spend around $15 for a pack of two. I purchased them on eBay since Popaball in the UK does not ship to the United States.


Grenache varietal. Notes of white flowers, fleshy white fruits, and citrus too. Serve as an aperitif or with dessert.  Perfect for porch sippin’ on a warm sunny day. Available on-line and locally at Mr. Bill’s Wine Cellar in Roanoke, Virginia.

River and Rail Restaurant

Cure For Sorrow Cocktail

Coconut Infused Buffalo Trace Bourbon, Bonal QuinQuina, House Tepache, Banana-Cream Syrup, Lime, Tiki Bitters. Pineapple, Coconut, and hints of spice. Shaken and served over a large ice cube. Grated cinnamon and pineapple wedge garnish. YUM!

Pop over to the Roanoker Magazine blog to enjoy my Beets, Bacon and Blue Salad (blue cheese and blueberries) recipe. Here’s the link:


Happy Spring!



The Art of Sabrage

There is a Guinness World Record for the most number of Champagne bottles sabered in 1 minute!

the champagne chick

(Image: luxury-insider.com)

There’s pretty much an International Day for everything … so why not an International Sabrage Day? At least nothing that I have been able to find, so I reckon we need to start something here …

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Tabasco’s Diamond Reserve: The “Champagne” Of Hot Sauces

Can’t wait to taste this “Champagne of Pepper Sauces”!


To celebrate their 150th Anniversary, Tabasco just released a new Diamond Reserve Hot Sauce, and it is spicy extravagance in a bottle.

They’ve dubbed it the “Champagne of pepper sauce” and are treating it as such. Namely, the hot sauce comes in a mini Champagne-style bottle, complete with that fancy gold foil on top and everything. 

A six ounce bottle of the anniversary hot sauce will cost you US$35. You know, about how much an actual bottle of Champagne might cost you. Or, like, three bottles of sparkling wine.

What does $35, Champagne-level fancy hot sauce taste like? According to Tabasco, the Diamond Reserve sauce is made with “the finest tabasco peppers on Avery Island,” which were selected based on colour, texture, and robustness. Only the best peppers were picked. The peppers were then mashed and aged up to 15 years. Finally, they were blended with sparkling white wine…

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The Motherload of Gifts … Part 3

I love the gold and diamond champagne cork necklace…oh la la!

the champagne chick

If you haven’t managed to find a gift that inspires you in Part 1 or Part 2, we’re going to have to pull out the big guns … but be warned, you may have to sell an organ.

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The Motherload of Gifts … Part 2

La partie deux! Champagne Gifts recommendations from the Champagne Chick!

the champagne chick

If you haven’t managed to find just the right gift in Part 1 … here are some more ideas that might inspire you.

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The Motherload of Gifts … Part 1

If you think these are bubbly good, wait til you see Motherload of Gifts Part 2 and 3! Thank you Champagne Chick!

the champagne chick

If you’re not good at gifting and always at a loss as to what to buy, and specifically with Mother’s Day almost upon us, I’ve put together the ultimate list for anyone who has to buy a gift for someone who loves Champagne.  So forget about your fall-back of hand cream, a box of chocolates, or heaven forbid … an electrical appliance. If you wanna score some serious brownie points, have a look below.  

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