• Wine & Dine {Day 2 – Part 2)

    September 25, 2013

    Let the Cooking Cottage adventures continue!

    The second part of Day 2 started with a happy hour boat cruise around Sag Harbor sponsored by Stack Wines.

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    Captain Anton drove us around the harbor on his boat. He was such a fun guy (fungi?), and we all enjoyed chatting with him.

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    Stack Wine is SO COOL. They’re snap-apart, single-serving glasses of wine that come in four-packs, which are equivalent to a full bottle of wine (750 ml). They’re shaped like stemless wine glasses and they’re made from a shatter-proof, hard plastic—perfect for traveling (and rowdy parties).

    I would totally 100%b buy these Stack Wines simply for the convenience. I mean, how many times have you forgotten a wine bottle opener? And drinking wine out of plastic red cups just isn’t the same as a glass, right? Stack Wines are a lot of fun (obviously) and the wine is pretty good. I tried the Pinot Grigio and the Chardonnay, and I liked them both. FYI: I preferred the Chard  over the Pinot.

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    Fun times!

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    After our boat ride, Captain Anton took us to see Billy Joel’s boat. So cool!

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    Back at the house, Chef Lia with McCormick was waiting to cook us an amazing six-course (!!) dinner, complete with cocktails and wine pairings. It was an incredible meal.


    The evening started informally in the kitchen with a cooking demonstration, which included some eating and drinking. Chef Lia talked us through how to make a couple of appetizers and highlighted a number of the McCormick spices she used in the recipes.


    Despite my expression in the photo below (I actually think I’m reacting to the bourbon cocktail I just sipped), I really loved this part of the evening. Chef Lia had so much to say about the various spices and ingredients she used, it made her cooking demo really interesting. She also had a lot of great ideas and made the recipes look so easy to make.

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    Cheers to Chef Lia! She ruled.

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    Chicken Tamales with Katsu Picante Sauce <— The Katsu Picante Sauce was incredible!


    Jicama Wrapped Short Ribs with Asian Pear Slaw


    Jicama wraps? Such a great idea, right?


    I thought the jicama would snap in half, but it stayed together no problem.


    After cocktails and apps, we sat down for dinner, which included another four courses.



    Last night was all about pacing yourself. There was so  much food!


    The dinner courses:

    Squash Ribbon Salad with Honey Harissa Sauce


    Smoked Tomato Chicken Paella


    Cinnamon-Braised Lamb Shanks with Mashed Plantains <— OMG. One of the best things I have ever eaten!


    Bittersweet Chocolate Torte with Passion Fruit Cream <— Also amazing! Chef Lia said if you can’t find passion fruit liqueur, you can substitute apricot liqueur.


    Gingered Banana Tart with Coconut Ice Cream


    Dinner was truly an epic meal, and I left the table feeling very full and very happy. Thanks, Chef Lia and McCormick!

    Questions of the Day

    How cool are those Stack wines?

    How often do you use spices in your everyday cooking? What are your go-to favorites?

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    { 48 comments… read them below or add one }

    Annette@FitnessPerks September 25, 2013 at 1:12 pm

    The gingered tart with coconut ice cream looks fab! And oh my goodness, I would love to be fed 6 courses at dinner. 😉

    That is a cool thing-those jicama wraps. I’m impressed they didn’t snap in half, either!


    emily:2:design:cents September 25, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    I love the Stacks wine-what a great concept, I can’t wait to try them:)


    FitBritt@MyOwnBalance September 25, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    Oh I love those stack wines! I would totally buy those for a picnic. I may have to look out for them. That dinner sounds amazing and the menu is really cool. I love spices and have lots and lots of them. I’ve got so many random ones from star anise to cardamom to tumeric and of course all the staples!


    Sara Thibodeaux September 25, 2013 at 1:29 pm

    Did you announce the winner of that awesome bag? I think I may have missed it and can’t find it.

    Looks like such a fun time! Love these updates!


    Tina September 25, 2013 at 1:31 pm

    Sorry for the delay. I’m still waiting for Rank & Style to pick the winner and send me the info. I’ll announce it as soon as possible.


    Sara Thibodeaux September 25, 2013 at 3:35 pm


    No worries at all! Glad I didn’t miss it. 🙂

    Will you do a “Day of Eats” post soon? Love those so much! I get inspired by your meals.


    Fizz @fizzsbizz September 25, 2013 at 1:40 pm

    Those stack wines look awesome! I would love some of those for bbqs and what not.
    My sister in law lives in Sag Harbor. So beautiful there!


    Sammy @ Peace Love and Ice Cream September 25, 2013 at 1:46 pm

    Those stackable wines are BEYOND cool! What a novel concept! (I wish I would’ve thought of them! lol) You are truly getting the royal treatment on this trip – what an amazing experience!
    -Sammy @ peaceandloveandicecream.blogspot.com


    Rhoda @3cheaprunners.com September 25, 2013 at 1:47 pm

    Those Stack wines look amazing! I would totally buy those for the convienience of them! Looks like are delish meal also!!


    Chelsea @ Designs on Dinner September 25, 2013 at 2:02 pm

    Wow, everything looks awesome! I pinned that cinnamon-braised lamb shank recipe, although I think I will do mashed parsnips instead of plantains. I use spices all the time–my favorites are cumin and smoked paprika.


    Ashley September 25, 2013 at 2:08 pm

    This trip seems amazing — but those Stack Wines definitely brought up the cool points. Million dollar idea right there!


    Amy @ The Little Honey Bee September 25, 2013 at 2:08 pm

    And now… I’m starving. Oh my gosh that dinner!


    Kerrie September 25, 2013 at 2:24 pm

    1) that food looks unreallllllllllll
    2) I am ordering 12 tupperware items
    3) stop posting your links on Facebook its draining my wallet, increasing my weight and taking away from my work
    luv ya!


    Tina September 25, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    Sparkling sangria!!!


    Jackie September 25, 2013 at 2:26 pm

    I need stack wine ASAP!!


    Melissa September 25, 2013 at 2:35 pm

    The gingered banana tart with coconut ice cream looks and sounds so unique and yummy! What a great pairing!


    Captain Competition September 25, 2013 at 2:35 pm

    I was at a party last weekend and someone else was telling me about the Stack wine. Braised Lamb shank sounds very manly and looks extremely delicious.


    Holly @ EatGreatBEGreat September 25, 2013 at 2:40 pm

    The cooking demonstration sounds like so much fun. I’d love that part! And, all the foods looks fantastic! I use spices in my cooking quite often. My go-to spices are garlic powder, oregano and Italian seasoning.


    joelle (on a pink typewriter) September 25, 2013 at 2:43 pm

    You guys look great! And I love those Stack wine glasses …….Is it too early to have wine (11:40am)? 😉


    Kim Gordon September 25, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    It all looks so good! I especially liked the chocolate torte. Thanks for sharing.


    Jaclyn September 25, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    Those Stacked Wines are so cool! They are perfect for when you just want a glass at home or to take somewhere. I wonder if/when they will be available in Canada.


    Kimberly September 25, 2013 at 3:01 pm

    They sell the Stack wines at the Indianapolis Colts stadium. Sometimes I will switch up my game beer for a wine just so I can have one of those cute glasses. My husband always laughs whenever it gets passed down the aisle to me.


    Tempie @ The Texas Peach September 25, 2013 at 3:03 pm

    I use spices all the time in my cooking. Some of my favorites are: chipotle chili powder, garlic powder and onion powder.


    Linda @ running4two September 25, 2013 at 3:10 pm

    Those stack wines look really cool and such a fun idea!

    I live close to the McCormick plant and I love to smell the spices on my way to work. Being from Maryland, I use a lot of Old Bay. 🙂


    Kate @ Trekking Kate September 25, 2013 at 3:22 pm

    The stack wines are adorable! And might I say, your dinner looks absolutely incredible!


    Lisa September 25, 2013 at 3:47 pm

    This trip looks like so much fun!!! I am drooling over the pictures of all the food! 🙂


    Nicole @ FruitnFitness September 25, 2013 at 4:11 pm

    That dinner sounds incredible. I have been eating plantain chips recently, but havent tried it in a mash or any form other than already made into chips. The rest of the meal looks great as well.


    Annie @ Annie Get Your Run September 25, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    Definitely going to have to try out that Paella…and the wine. Obvi.


    Livi September 25, 2013 at 4:43 pm

    I love cinnamon, oregano, and curry for everyday! you can basically add these to any dish you’re cooking {not all together} and add some pizazz to it!


    Nicole September 25, 2013 at 5:04 pm

    The food looks amazing!
    I use cinnamon everyday in my coffee and stirred into yogurt or oats.
    This Moroccan Spice is one of my favorites on veggies: http://www.thespicehouse.com/spices/moroccan-spice-mixture


    Alex @ Kenzie Life September 25, 2013 at 5:57 pm

    Those Stack wines look great for picnics! Solo cups are just too reminiscent of bad frat parties in college so I have a pretty firm “classy cup” policy and those would be great!


    Taylor @ Single-tracked Mind September 25, 2013 at 6:04 pm

    Those stack wines are so cool! I loooove booze cruises.


    Rachel September 25, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    Oh my. That lamb shank looks so amazing I want to jump through the screen and eat it!


    Marissa@ohhhsolovely September 25, 2013 at 7:41 pm

    looks like such a nice area with great weather & food!


    Caroline @ Adventures in Living Lean September 25, 2013 at 8:11 pm

    I use spices all the time to cook…I really love trying to use a lot of dried herbs so I use less salt. My go to’s are oregano, garlic, rosemary, thyme, dill, curry powder, and Cajun spices.


    Amie September 25, 2013 at 8:15 pm

    Oh my gosh, I need to try that wine! And the jicama wraps look incredible, I keep wanting to experiment with jicama but don’t know where to start! All of the food looks amazing!


    Jan @ Sprouts n Squats September 25, 2013 at 10:14 pm

    I’m more a red than a white drinker and prefer a cab sav or merlot to a Pinot but love the idea of this! That food looks amazing too looks like you are having a great time 🙂


    Kalee September 26, 2013 at 1:49 am

    Everything looks so good and pretty on the plate!!

    I’m a white wine girl (unless its sangria)! 🙂


    Jamie @ Sometimes Healthy Living Blog September 26, 2013 at 7:22 am

    I am officially jealous of this trip – the boat cruise seems so cool!

    I’ve seen ads and noticed Stack Wine in the store, so your post definitely made me want to try it.

    All of this dishes look amazing, but especially the tamale. I am a big spice fan because I think it’s such a simple way to add a ton of flavor. My favorite is definitely basil, followed by cilantro (I guess those are herbs).


    FitnFifty September 26, 2013 at 8:05 am

    I don’t use salt, so it is all about spice, if fresh, even better : Basil with tomatoes, Rosemary on chicken and turkey, allspice and cinnamon for exotic flavors, fresh ginger in stir fries, etc.


    Sarah G. September 26, 2013 at 8:20 am

    Yum, everything looks amazing! I totally would buy those stack wines, too.

    I use spices in my cooking a LOT since what I cook is usually pretty simple and the spices I use create some variation. Cumin, paprika, and garlic powder are the most common ones used in my house.


    Daniela September 26, 2013 at 8:34 am

    I love using spices in every single meal. The most used ones for me are cumin, thyme, paprika, garlic, salt, and pepper. I also add jalapeños or Serrano chiles to my food. I will not eat anything that is not seasoned and salt and pepper are not enough; just basics!

    Now, the Stack Wine is something I will definitely look into! It looks like you had an amazing time!! 🙂


    Nicole September 26, 2013 at 9:38 am

    Dinner looks wonderful. I ended up pinning quite a few of the dishes for my own future dinner parties.


    Cate September 26, 2013 at 10:06 am

    I love jicama! What a great way to use it. Looks like you’re having a great time!


    Katie @ A Full Plate September 26, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    Love the Stack wines! I don’t drink beer so always bring wine with me to parties. So I would love these! Also helps with portion control 😉


    Nicole September 26, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    I would love to bring those stack wines tailgating!

    The spices I use the most tend to be cinnamon, pepper, red pepper flakes, and garlic pepper.


    Beth @ dietitianduo September 26, 2013 at 7:55 pm

    I sampled the Molasses Bourbon Sour at The Spice Academy last week and enjoyed many of the same Flavor Forecast pairings. They prepared the grilled fruit sangria there too! I am far from a bourbon drinker, but really liked the flavors in that cocktail. Did you like it?
    My go to spice is Smoked Paprika…totally obsessed with it! 🙂


    Tina September 26, 2013 at 8:30 pm

    It was definitely tasty, but occasionally I’d get a taste of bourbon, and I just wasn’t a fan. Haha!


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