Milan, Italy

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After attending the MICAM trade show we had a day to explore around Milan which was my first time visiting this city. Fueled with Instagram recommendations we started out in the morning at the Duomo (how can you not) which was exceptionally beautiful. We wandered the beautiful halls of Galleria Vittorio Emanuele and Via Della Spiga. We ate gelato, dinned at Taglio, looked at old books, watched people play bocce ball, and had the most charming dinner at Al Fresco. It was an amuse-bouche of Milan, drowned in Pasta and Aperol spritz and a lost in a sea of Italian suits in the most beautiful men’s street fashion I’ve ever seen.

Here are some snapshots from our moments lost in the hallways of Milan… 

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Nantucket, MA

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Recently my friend Molly was married in New Bedford which took us up the east coast on an early autumn weekend. We decided to pop over to Nantucket and make the most of these last remaining days of warm sunlight. Whenever I’m about to travel to a new place and need to research where to stay I always start with the travel site Mr. & Mrs. Smith. It is how I found where we stayed in Tulum and now for Nantucket with the beautiful luxury boutique hotel, 76 Main, which is a contemporarily renovated historic home on Main street and an easy walk from the ferry.

Here are the things I fell in love with about Nantucket: It’s a great bikeable place with a vast changing landscape. Because much of the island’s natural landscape is protected you can really enjoy the serenity of the country side. Beautiful beaches, beautiful houses, beautiful little shops, beautiful lighthouses, everywhere you turn is beauty. I loved how it was much less flashy than say the Hamptons. Here everybody drives old versions of JEEPS and the vibe is a casual chill. The local brewery Cisco is a must see, eat and drink with their live music, food trucks and endless supply of fresh oysters. Nautilus was my favorite dining experience. Oath’s pizza was perfect. And of course, who doesn’t love a view of beautiful sailboats.

We only had a couple of days to stay here and enjoy all that is Island living but I’m already planning my return next year and dreaming of what it’d be like to own one of those charming historic homes on a cobblestone street with a garden of hydranegas and a golden retriever ready for a day at the beach.

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Come Sail Away…

Ecco_Domani_Sailing_01 On a recent trip to Nantucket I wanted to take Kevin on a surprise date, something that felt local to the place but personal to our life. I love to sail and when we walked by the gorgeous boat The Endeavor I knew that was it. Considering how much we travel, I’m always looking for ways to make a place feel reminiscent to home. Though I couldn’t make a home cooked meal, I wanted to fill his soul in just the same way. I love a beautiful red wine in the fall and having just received a few bottles of Ecco Domani Merlot I brought them with us on our Nantucket getaway. I tried to think of something I could put together that wouldn’t require access to a kitchen and found a local market stocked with cheeses from Vermont, freshly made lobster salad, my favorite kind of almonds and beautiful grapes. I popped into one of those tourists shops and purchased a cheese board covered in all things Nantucket which I would typically never do, however, we found the enthusiasm for this place expressed on a cutting board quite charming and now back in New York I see it in the kitchen and think back on this perfect afternoon date, sailing around the harbor watching boats bob in place and flags dancing in the autumn sun.

I think it’s important to find ways to enjoy simple pleasures, carving out time in our crazy fast lives. A bottle of wine and a simple picnic on land or sea is an easy and effortless way to make memories with the ones you love. We enjoyed lunch in the smooth waters of the inlet before our captain took us out sailing the sound. Mostly though, we sipped our Ecco Domani Merlot and welcomed fall though the rippling sound of ocean waves.

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Though Ecco Domani’s Merlot pairs well with foods like tomato-based pastas and grilled meats, I found the blackberry flavors of this wine went perfectly with a classic cheese plate. Simple rule of thumb is one hard cheese, one soft, one fruit, one nut, crackers and – in most cases – a cured meat, which I opted out for locally made lobster salad. Though we ate before we hoisted up the sails, it was still a good idea to have stemless wine glasses, which I borrowed from our hotel.

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Dinner with Dom Pérignon

Dinner with Dom Pérignon in Hautvillers, France

It can only be described as “like a dream” to dine with the winemakers of Dom Pérignon in a glowing mansion in Épernay on the Moët & Chandon estate. If I let my mind wander from the conversation I could sit back and imagine that it must have not been unlike this to dine in a miniature version of Versailles. But if anything could outshine the grandeur of the room it was the incredible chocolate soufflé created by Chef de Cuisine Pascal Tingaud for us that evening as a perfect finish to a meal paired with Dom Pérignon Rosé vintages. It was served in a large soufflé dish and bought around to each person family style at the table… sometimes twice. I asked the chef if he wouldn’t mind sharing this heavenly dessert recipe for my own dinner parties at home in New York.

See below for the recipe of the night’s star dish by Chef de Cuisine Pascal Tingaud

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