champagne day

Champagne Day, August 4 ~ Celebrate With Frozen Champagne Raspberry Peach Grape Pops!

“Men are like wine ~ some  turn to vinegar, but the best improve with age.” 

Pope John XXIII




August 4 is celebrated as “Champagne Day” because on this day in 1693, Dom Pérignon exclaimed  “Come quickly, I am drinking the stars!” when he “invented” champagne.   Dom Pérignon was only 19 when he became a monk and moved to the Abbey of Hautvillers near the town of Épernay (within Champagne, France), where he served as cellarmaster. It was popular at the time to try to get rid of any bubbles in wine. As hard as he tried Dom Pérignon could not get rid of the bubbles and instead embraced them which was an important step in the evolution of champagne.


“Have you thrown up your hands in despair and confusion with too many choices? In that case, just remember one word:


It’s refreshing, relatively low in alcohol and sufficiently neutral to go with a myriad of foods. One minor tweak might be to have  more full-bodied vintage champagne with red meats and non-vintage champagne with everything else.  That’s a lot easier to remember than what wine goes with yak.”

~ Sam Gugino, contributing editor to Wine Spectator and author of Cooking to Beat the Clock


 Rosé Champagne with BBQ!  Ray Isle, Executive Wine Editor, Food and Wine Magazine, paired  Rosé Champagne with BBQ Brisket with surprisingly pleasant results:


Refreshing Summer Treat!  Champagne Raspberry Peach Grape Pops!

Skewer large black grapes on fancy picks. Place in a container so that the picks lay flat.  Mix 1 cup champagne (or sparkling wine) with 1/2 cup Raspberry Peach Grand Marnier.  Pour the champagne/raspberry peach mixture over the grapes, cover and refrigerate overnight.  Pour the champagne/raspberry peach liquid off of the grapes and make more grapes or discard liquid.   Cover the container and place in freezer.  Freeze grapes for two hours or more. Serve ice-cold.

These icy treats are perfect to pop in your mouth straight from the freezer or pop them in a glass of champagne!


Happy Champagne Day!

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Global Champagne Day ~ Celebrate With Champagne And Candied Violets!

Happy Global Champagne Day!

Friday, October 21, 2016 promises to be a 24 hour party ~ Global Champagne Day!  This special day, in it’s 7th year now,  was created by a blogger on the West Coast, Chris Oggenfuss,  who decided it was time to celebrate champagne around the world. It’s a virtual toast. A yearly social media celebration. The 24-hour event encourages consumers to blog, tweet and post their thoughts about the French sparkling wine by using the #ChampagneDay hashtag.

This link includes times and locations for Champagne Day celebrations across the United States:

Some people, like me, believe that Champagne Day should be EVERY DAY!

Things that are making me smile on 2016 Global Champagne Day:


A lovely gift from my bubbly friends…all the way from Vienna!

Demels Candied Violets

an imperial temptation!

Natural candied violet blossom leaves ~ a favorite of Empress Sisi of Austria!

Elisabeth of Austria (Sisi) (born 1837 – died 1898) was the wife of Emperor Franz Joesph I,  She maintained her girlish figure by being sewn into leather corsets fitted underneath her fine gowns, by a process called “lacing” which took up to one hour to complete each day. It is hard to believe that Empress Elizabeth would even allow herself to eat candies given her waistline of just 51 centimeters (20 1/2 inches). But still Sisi permitted Mr. Demel of imperial and royal confectioners Demel to make regular personal deliveries of candied violets to the Hofburg. The sugar drenched violet petal candies are still available from the Demel shop to this day. This imperial temptation is well worth a try for the attractive floral-patterned tin alone.  (source:

Candied violets are particularly delicious served with chocolate and champagne…I will be serving this lovely combination on Friday evening and will report back with photos on my blog…stay tuned!

Pizza Scissors!


What a fabulously easy way to cut a pizza! We were served pizza with these scissors at Lampo Restaurant in Charlottesville, Virginia.  After years of struggling to cut pizza with a standard pizza cutter, these scissors made me happy, happy, happy!

These scissors are available on-line at and ebay.


Loved the front door of Lampo and their wood fire oven made their pizza crisp and smokey tasting.

When we saw the guy seated a the counter with the navy blue and orange colors we knew we were in University of Virginia Cavalier Country!

pumpkin-latte-1Pumpkin Latte is back at our favorite local coffee shop ~ Sweet Donkey Coffee ~ ~ in Roanoke, Virginia.  They make their own fresh pumpkin puree for the latte. It’s been a year since they’ve offered this specialty latte on their menu, so this morning we were so HAPPY to sip this lovely spicy coffee concoction.


Watching the Halloween Baking Championship on Food Network (Mondays 9 p.m. EST) featuring Roanoke’s own amazing Chef John Schopp (pictured above center) is definitely a HAPPY time!  Please tune in for lots of sweet Halloween fun!


Our local cupcake shop Viva la Cupcake offers Chocolate Maple Cupcakes (the maple is in the icing)…yum!

I used to think that fabulous flavors ended with summer, but I am discovering that fall flavors such as pumpkin and maple can be equally delicious…enjoying this flavor journey!

Happy words make me smile…


Words to live by…Sign at Starbucks





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