Entertaining: Dinner in the Apple Orchard

December 05

Remember when I was scouting for the location for this shoot? You can check out the full entertaining story online at Flutter Magazine right here, or you can pick up a copy at these stockists or you can buy a print copy of magazine online right here. This was the kind of shoot where everything fell together perfectly in ways that couldn’t have been planned.  A big thank you to the amazing Nancy Neil for the insane photos and the to die for food by Paper Palate.

The signature apple drink  by Paper Palate was a serious hit.

The Menu:

Garden Carrots, Green Olives and Radishes with Bagna Cauda

Roasted Late Summer Tomato Soup with Herb Pesto Oil

Roasted Two Day Salted Whole Local Chicken

Pumpkin Tacos

Okra & Tomato Salad

Stuffed Baked Apple with Melted Cheddar Cheese

The table itself had a beautiful galvanized finish and is available for rent from Vintage Vignettes. Each place setting consisted of  gorgeous plates from Anthropologie, a hand painted menu by Rebekah Miles, glassware from Upstairs at Pierre Lafond, vintage flatware, and napkins by Rachel Craven.

I used pre-made loose weave ribbon around candles and tucked in millet, wheat, scabiosa, and astrania instead of doing a traditional flower arrangement. Flowers can be purchased at Fabulous Florals.

Pumpkin tacos, check out the recipe here.

Local Cambria Estate Wines paired perfectly with the menu.

I found these short tumblers from Upstairs at Pierre Lafond and I knew they’d be perfect for our baked apple dessert.

Dig in! Thank you to all the contributors and Flutter Magazine! I’ll be posting some behind the scenes action on Wednesday.


Photography: Nancy Neil // Styling + Production: Kelly Oshiro // Food: Paper Palate // Location: Private Ranch // Serving platters, glassware, lanterns: Upstairs at Pierre Lafond // Tables: Vintage Vignettes // Menus: Rebekah Miles // Napkins: Rachel Craven // Wine: Cambria // Purchase Flowers: Fabulous Florals


On the Rocks: Prickly Pear

December 14

Happy Friday! This holiday-inspired cocktail incorporates some of my favorite fall flavors: rosemary, spice, and pears. I love how the entire cocktail gets infused with flavor from the oh-so-pretty rosemary stirrer. Enjoy!


1 1/2 shot of Absolute Pear vodka

Small splash of St. Germain

Heavy splash of pear juice

Lemon wedge


*Squeeze lemon wedge into martini shaker and add the rind. Add vodka, St. Germain, and pear juice and shake well over ice. Strain into a martini glass and top with a champagne float. Garnish with a rosemary sprig and voila!

-XOXO Melissa

And you can browse all the On the Rocks posts right here.

On the Rocks: Frozen Blood Orange Mimosa

August 24

Happy Friday SB Chic readers! There is nothing quite like a mimosa with brunch, and I’m always trying to think of new ways to amp up my favorite day-time cocktail. This recipe actually happened by accident: One day I wanted to make mimosas but only had sorbet…and I thought “I guess this could work like orange juice?” And guest what–they were DELICIOUS! I love how the blood orange gives this champagne cocktail an added dimension of flavor, and it stays cold for much longer than a basic mimosa. What could be better?!


-Blood Orange Sorbet

-St. Germain


*Place one small scoop of sorbet into a champagne glass, add a tiny splash of St. Germain and fill with champagne. No need to stir!

And to see more “On the Rocks” cocktails ideas, go right here.

On the Rocks: Pear Potion

May 11

TGIF! I’m making a game plan because I’m driving down to my beloved hometown (Long Beach) this weekend to celebrate Mother’s Day and my mom’s birthday-don’t worry Mom, I won’t mention what birthday it is…but it is definitely cause for celebration J

St. Germain has become my all-time favorite ingredient to add to cocktails. This elderflower liquor is powerfully delicious in taste and I simply adore its beautiful bottle… You can pretty much add it to anything for a punch of delectable flavor. For this weekend, we will definitely be drinking our fair share of champagne and since this recipe is such a crowd-pleaser, I think it will be what I’ll be mixing up for the fam. Enjoy!


Small splash of St. Germain (a little bit goes a long way)

Splash of pear juice

Fill with chilled Champagne (I prefer Prosecco)




And to see even more On the Rocks cocktail ideas they’re right here.