Category Archives: Cuisine

Lucy and Jason’s Farmington Country Club Wedding

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Lucy and Jason were married in late August at Farmington Country Club, located right around the corner from the bride’s family home. Despite the rainy day, the bride and groom had bright spirits and joyful hearts! The bride chose a palate of white, green, and touch of deep blue to give a special nod to the gorgeous Blue Ridge Mountain view – very fitting for late summer! The groomsmen even wore green ties with fleur de lis, a nod to Jason’s New Orleans background.

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Venue and Catering: Farmington Country Club// Photographer: Jen Fariello// Florist: Southern Blooms// Printed Materials: Rock, Paper, Scissors// Lighting: Blue Ridge Light Forms// Rentals: Festive Fare// Linens: La Tavola Linens & Nuage// Brides Dress: Oscar de la Renta// Groom’s and Groomsmen ties: Peter-Blair

 

The Perfect Cheese Plate

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A good cheese plate is the perfect party accessory! Here are some suggestions for building that perfect plate:

Choices, Choices

A cheese plate should include a variety of tastes, textures, and types. Include a full range: mild to strong; soft to hard; cow, sheep, and goat. Many entertainers like to include one familiar cheese so that every guest will have something to love! Here are some delicious examples…

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The Cheeses

Aged: Aged Cheddar, Comte, Gouda

Soft: Brie, Constant Bliss, Camembert, Brillat-Savarin

Firm: Manchego, Mimolette, Farmhouse Cheddar, Gruyère

Blue: Gorgonzola Dolce, Valdeón, Stilton, Roquefort

Choose 3-5 cheeses, depending on the size of the party. Provide 1 oz of each cheese, per each guest.

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Pairings                                        

Choose plain, fresh bread and crackers. Flavored breads will often overwhelm the flavors in cheese. However, breads that include olives, walnut, or dried-fruit compliment cheese extremely well! A cheese plate is paired with savory foods when it is served before dinner. Olives, nuts, and cured meats (prosciutto, salami) are all good examples of savory foods. A cheese plate that is served as a dessert course is often paired with preserves, fresh fruit (pears, figs, apples), or dried fruit (apricots, figs, prunes). Condiments and vegetables are easy additions to a cheese plate: artichoke hearts, roasted red pepper, caramelized onions, tart chutneys, and honey work well. As for the wine…A fatty cheese goes best with an acidic white wine. A cheese that is higher in protein pairs best with red wine. Beer compliments cheese just as well as wine. The yeasty, fruity, and earthy flavors in beer can also be found in cheese.

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Serving

The flavors in cheese come out best at room temperature. Remove your cheeses from refrigeration one hour before serving. Plate strong cheeses separately from milder cheeses. Each cheese should have its own knife. By keeping each cheese each on its own plate, you can alleviate party congestion! You may also want to pre-slice your cheese—if so, slice while the cheese is cold.

Storage

Store leftovers in parchment paper, or wax paper and plastic wrap. Blue cheeses should be wrapped in foil. Save to enjoy another time!

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Parker and Scott’s Memorial Day Wedding

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Parker and Scott were married at Grace Episcopal church the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend. Having grown up attending Christmas Eve service at Grace Episcopal and Christmas day at Keswick Hall, Parker always knew where she wanted to be married! With picture perfect may weather and a room filled with whites and pinks the night could not have been more magical.

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Ceremony Venue: Grace Episcopal Church// Reception Venue: Keswick Hall// Catering: Keswick Hall// Rentals: Festive Fare// Save the Date and Day of Printed Materials: Rock Paper Scissors // Wedding Invitation: The Lime Tree// Makeup: Lora Elaine// Hair: Bella Hair Studio// Band: Soul Play Band// Cocktail Music: Peter Richardson// Wedding Cake: Favorite Cakes// Florals: Jack H. Lucky Floral Designs//  Photography: Jen Fariello// Videography: Meet + Cute Films// Vintage Car: Albemarle Limousine// Lighting: Blue Ridge Light Forms// Tent: Skyline Tent Company

 

Devon and Dan Live Happily Ever After

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Devon and Dan celebrated their marriage at Farmington Country Club with their close friends and family! With a color palate of hot pink and navy blue, the bridesmaids and groomsmen dressed the part with pink dresses and navy ties… the ring bearer even carried  a colorful ring pillow! From cocktails to the seated dinner reception custom pillows, furniture, and draping brought in the color scheme as well!

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Venue and Catering: Farmington Country Club// Photographer: Patricia Lyons// Videographer: Blue Sky Films//Florist and Furniture Rental: Beehive Events// Printed Materials: Cheree Berry// Wedding Cake: K. Rose Cakes// Lighting and AV: Blue Ridge Light Forms// Rentals: Festive Fare//

Color Me Beautiful: Orchard Inspiration

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A beautiful (and sweet!) alternative to flowers, fruit can act as a colorful addition to a wedding bouquet, boutonniere, or tablescape.  In-season citrus and peaches in the summer or apples and pears in autumn and winter bring a fresh, natural vibe to an event.  And who doesn’t love a few juicy berries atop a beautiful wedding cake or in sweet, personalized containers for a delicious send-off at the end of the night?

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Fruit boutonniere, Strawberry favor, Booze and berries, Lemons, Cherry favor, Wedding cake, Pear place card, Peach cake, Apple favor

A Montalto Rehearsal Dinner

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The Easton girls loved celebrating with the Hornberger/Fryer family the night before their wedding day! Graced with a beautiful sunset and idyllic Charlottesville mountain view, Monticello’s Montalto was the perfect venue for this group of UVA graduates! The colors of  the Blue Ridge Mountains were reflected inside the building with tones of blues incorporated with the chivari chairs and table linens.  Pat’s Floral Design created simple floral arrangements that complimented the beautiful surrounding landscape. Chef Dean Maupin crafted a masterpiece of summer specialties using local flavors for a seated dinner of 50 people, including one of our seasonal favorites…gazpacho!

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Venue: Monticello’s Montalto// Photographer: Eric Kelley// Catering: Keswick Hall// Florals: Pat’s Floral Design.

 

A French Bistro Inspired Shoot at Pippin Hill Farm and Vineyard

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This French-bistro inspired shoot at Pippin Hill was the definition of warm and simple bistro style. In it’s most basic definition, the name bistro means an eating-place where wine is served. More broadly, the “French Bistro” is known as a relatively cheap neighborhood eatery and a bustling bastion of French Street life. Likewise, the Pippin table is dressed in stripped down comfort: a bare wooden table, wine bottle tapers, and a modest assortment of flowers—as though just cut from a backyard jardin in the Loire Valley.

Staying true to the bistro culture, the real centerpiece was the food: unadorned local peaches, fried green tomatoes, grilled breads, a grilled peach arugula salad, and local greens garnished with chevre (a indisputable staple in French cheeses). Here, simple and fresh flavors are the thing, and every place is set with the requisite pain quotidien. The place cards were simple off-white tags, tied with twine to each personal-sized French baguette. Subtle French emblems are visible throughout, with a red rooster, or Gallic coq, a national symbol of France, printed on the table number cards. The place card is stamped with a tiny fleur de lis and a lit blackboard shouts energetically: “Bon Appétit!”

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Venue: Pippin Hill Farm and Vineyard// Photography: Jen Fariello// Printed Materials: Rock Paper Scissors// Florals: Pat’s Floral Design// Rentals: Festive Fare.

An Evening-Inspired Shoot at Pippin Hill

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We’re so excited to share this fabulous shoot captured by the lovely Jen Fariello! With the view from Pippin Hill Farm and Winery as our backdrop, we couldn’t quite go wrong with this envisioned evening. Our color palette was rife with the toned down blues, silvers, pinks, golds, and icy whites that reflect the soft coolness of dusk or twilight.

Our wedding couple walks towards an open, white doorway, hung with two cascading bouquets of hydrangeas, dahlias, and garden greenery. Off-white chiavari chairs set a perfect contrast to the dark blues and greens of the Virginia hillside. Warm, red-brown ceremony benches fill to the end of the aisle, adding some visual variation.

The wedding table is seated with golden-brown cross back chairs. Slate placemats and light blue earthenware beckon guests to get comfortable at this warm and inviting spread. Woven down the center of the table is an array of sliver and silver-patina vases reflected by a single, beveled-edge mirror table runner. A trio of etched glasses is set at each place, looking almost frosted from afar. The final touch is a few votives set in sea-green tinted glasses. The scene is romantic, elegant, and inviting all at the same time.

Jen Fariello

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Venue: Pippin Hill Farm and Vineyard// Florist: Pat’s Floral Design// Photographer: Jen Fariello// Rentals: Festive Fare

A Garden Inspired Wedding at Clifton Inn

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Kelli Brooks and Randall Scheri had a late-Spring wedding at the Clifton Inn in Charlottesville, Virginia. Their event was a lush, green, and reverent celebration of the season.

With under a hundred guests, Kelli and Randall were able to keep the ceremony intimate in Clifton’s “Croquet Lawn”—an English-style, cultivated garden enclosed in white lattice. The Inn’s many elegant yet accessible rooms were woven with tables for the after-ceremony meal. Dining tables were set with a variety of flowers in pink, green, beige, and lavender, laid out simply and mixed with dark violet flowers, which added complexity and depth. The tablecloths were a subdued gold, overlaid with glimmering sage and deep aqua toppers. One of the themes of this wedding was definitely comfort: clean and cozy settees staged on the outside patio welcomed guests outside to a lush, green yard, and more casual cocktail and dining tables for mingling. The guests left with locally-made artisan chocolates—something to take home and savor the event days later.

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Ceremony and Reception Venue: Clifton Inn// Catering: Clifton Inn// Rentals:Festive Fare// Hair and Makeup: Moxie// Band: Pheonix// Florals:Floral Images and Pat’s Floral Design //  Photography: Jen Fariello// Videographer: Aaron Watson//  Lighting and AV: Blue Ridge Light Forms//  Tent: Skyline Tent // Favors: Gearhart’s Chocolate//Printed Materials: Good Press Paper Co.// Calligraphy: Ginny Rogan

Forget Me Not Friday: The Groom’s Cake

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Charlottesville Wedding Planner

The groom’s cake may seem like a relatively new presence on the wedding scene, but this growing addition has strong roots, specifically in the American South. (Back then, a single woman who boxed up a slice at a wedding was supposed to sleep with the cake under her pillow that night and she would dream of her own husband-to-be!). The basis of the new popularity lies in a kind of battle of the sexes—the modern groom wants his own presence in the wedding celebrations! The groom’s cake is generally more masculine, in contrast to the wedding cake: it is often a darker or richer cake, is only one layer, and, occasionally, reflects the groom’s personality or interests (think sport- or alma mater-inspired cakes).

How a couple incorporates their groom’s cake varies, and depends mostly on personal preference. Some display the groom’s cake next to the wedding cake at the reception, cutting the second cake later in the night, after the wedding cake has been cut. Some use the groom’s cake as a desert at the rehearsal dinner. Alternatively, the groom’s cake can become the focal point of pre-wedding preparations and celebrations for the groomsmen. It’s definitely an ever-changing and open tradition worth considering.

You can see the groom’s cake as a bit of groom’s revenge, and you can also see this second cake as a nod to the uniqueness of the couple: it’s a respectful acknowledgement of the two distinct individuals who are coming together.

Patricia Lyons

Easton Events Image 1 courtesy of Patricia Lyons and cake by Sylvia Weinstock, Image 2 and 3 courtesy of Patricia Lyons and cake by Mahlia Creations, Image 4 and 5 courtesy of Patrica Lyons and cake by Cakes of Art.