Gallivant Eats & Drinks: Holiday Entertaining with Andegavia Cask Wine

Happy Tuesday! It is Christmas week! Can you believe how it snuck up on us? With the 25th right around the corner, I am sure that many of you have entertaining on the brain. What is everyone cooking and drinking come Christmas this year? Not sure yet? I may be able to help with at least the second part of that question...

Photo: Cary Hazlegrove for Andegavia

Photo: Cary Hazlegrove for Andegavia

In November I had the pleasure of meeting Kelly Macomber, of Andegavia Cask Wine at Wayfair and Boston Bloggers "Home For The Holidays" event in Boston. Andegavia is a collection of Napa and Sonoma blends which are packaged in sustainable casks instead of glass bottles, with each cask holding the equivalent  of four bottles of wine. If the words "Boxed wine" just popped into your head--think again. Andegavia is to boxed wine what fine belgian chocolate is to a Hershey bar. High-end, refined, and sophisticated.  In fact, the only similarity is the element of practicality.   Kelly and I chatted as I sipped their yummy Sauvignon Blanc (And I am not usually a big Sauv drinker), and I was fascinated by her and her husband Gavin's vision behind Andegavia, which she sweetly agreed to share more of here on the Gallivant, along with a couple great tips on choosing wine and pairings for Holiday entertaining.

Which came first--your passion for wine, or your passion for sustainability?

To be honest, for me it was my passion for the planet & our environment. Sure, I've always liked wine, but the idea that there had to be a better, greener way to drink everyday wines really was the inspiration behind Andegavia. The whole idea of being able to have a glass when you want it and not worry about opening glass bottles and having them go bad when not consumed within a few days. 

Why boxed wine and what do you feel sets Andegavia apart?

We like to call it Cask Wine, we think it's the best format for your everyday drinking wines.  All from a convenience, sustainability & preservation stand point. We're creating a new category of "luxury" class wines in sustainable packaging.

Which is your favorite one of your wines?

For me it's got to be our 2012 Special Edition Bartlett Merlot. Amazing wine, a Cab drinkers Merlot, but I especially love the design of this cask. The richness of the colors just say Holiday to me.

This summer it seemed like the rosé obsession really peaked (#yeswayrosé). Do you have any plans on doing a rosé in the future? I know quite a few people (including myself) who would be thrilled to be able to buy it in casks!

Yes, we're working on a Rose as I type. We've been tasting Provence varietals for a few months now and plan on having ours available in Early Spring…in time for Easter. #yeswayrose 

Do you have any tips on picking wine for holiday entertaining? What are you drinking this season and what are your favorite holiday pairings?

Pick what you & your significant other like to drink. If hosting a cocktail party go with one white & one red to keep it simple. We'd suggest choosing a Chardonnay and a Cab Sauv as those two varietals are the most popular in the States. 

I'm a big fan of Merlots - they are making a huge comeback! Especially a Merlot Blend like our Bartlett Merlot, which pairs excellently with everything from a Filet of Beef (which I served at Thanksgiving,) to a pasta dish & even a heavier fish. Very versatile! And of course, Pol Roger Champagne is my go to during the Holiday season…nothing quite like some bubbles to spice up the Holidays!

Photo: Erin Frigerio for Andegavia

Photo: Erin Frigerio for Andegavia

Where are you distributed right now? Do you have any plans to get into the South anytime soon? Fingers crossed…

Right now we're distributed in NJ, NY & MA. We do have big plans to get national distribution in early 2015, which most definately will include the South! However, currently we do ship all our wines direct to consumer to 35 states.

As the first high-end boxed (cask) wine on the market in the United States you are really at the forefront of the wine industry-where do you see Andegavia in 10 years and how would you like to grow?

At Andegavia we're hoping to change the way people drink wine on a daily basis. In France, cask wines are 1/3 of the overall wine market. Because the French understand the value and convenience this format offers. We hope to create the same level of success here at home in the US. 

Thank you so much for sharing Kelly! It was such a pleasure to meet you and hear more about Andegavia. If you are hosting Christmas or a New Years party this year head straight over to Andegavia's website--they still has casks available, and I can't think of a better way to spread the Holiday cheer this season. I think they would also make great hostess gifts, especially if you are staying somewhere for a few days. We are planning on bringing one up to Vermont next week for apres-ski! 

Cheers,

Emily

P.S. This is not a sponsored post, I am just excited to share a fun new discovery!

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O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree: A Glimpse at Our Christmas Decor

Homemade Pine Cone and Fir Garland // Christmas Decor // The Gallivant

With our one year anniversary looming, we are coming to the end of the landslide of newlywed "firsts" that have occurred over the past year but we saved one of my favorites for last.  This past weekend John and I went and got our very first Christmas tree! John is rolling his eyes reading this ( "Basic" has been the buzzword of the season) but it was so fun! It never quite feels like the Christmas season until the tree is trimmed. 

We found our perfect 6.5' Frasier Fir at Bailey's (where I also got my dwarf lemon tree earlier this year.) Their selection was amazing, with all sorts of tree varieties like frasier, noble (SO beautiful, but they didn't have one our size,) white pine, scotch pine, and more! As we walked through the aisles of cut trees the scent of pine and fir wafted over us in the most heavenly way, better than any holiday candle. (Although the Nest Holiday candle really is insane, and still available for purchase at Bluetique!)

Christmas Decor 4.jpg

Getting our tree was just the motivation I needed to finish our decorating our apartment for Christmas. I have been all about bringing the outside in this season and striving for a balance between rustic and glam. The more real and fresh greenery the better. Over Thanksgiving I went out into the woods and brought home all sort of boughs in lovely reds and browns, berries, and a bit of greenery in lieu of flowers for Fall decor. For Christmas I have been collecting the large and  beautiful pine cones that abound down here in the South, and am finally able to put them to good use. (Have you seen our wedding decor? What can I say--I like what I like.)

Did you know that most places that sell Christmas trees (from Home Depot to small local stands) have a large pile of greenery scraps that they usually give away for free? I grabbed a bundle of fir branches when we picked up our tree, and then made a homemade garland yesterday just by wiring pieces together with floral wire. I paired it with a pinecone garland that I made and accented with tiny gold and red ornaments, and then draped them over the mirror and botanical prints in our living room. I love the sort of wild and whimsical touch it adds to the room. 

Homemade Pine Cone and Fir Garland // Christmas Decor // The Gallivant

Trimming the tree and decorating the house is one of my most favorite parts of the lead up to Christmas. It's such a cheery and welcome sight after a long day of work, or while sipping a drink on the couch at night with the twinkly lights on. Even right now, while it is pouring outside in Florida, it is so cozy and festive from where I am curled up with a blanket and a candle burning while I work. The best. 

Christmas decor 2.jpg

Have you decorated your tree yet? What are your favorite trimming traditions?

xoxo,

Emily 

P.S. Still not quite done with your holiday shopping? Check out the Gallivant gift guides here, here, here, and here

P.S. Like what you are reading? Go ahead and subscribe by entering your email address into the form on the left-hand side of this page so that you never miss a post! Or, you can follow me on Bloglovin. Also, follow along with The Gallivant on  pinterest, instagram,  and Twitter!

 

2014 Stocking Stuffers for Her

A gift guide full of great stocking stuffer ideas for the women in your life!

As promised, here is the ladies edition of stocking stuffer ideas! To me, a great stocking is both practical and thoughtful, with room for a funny gag gift here and there.  Here are my top picks for the ladies in your life!

1. A tablet stand to prop up her Ipad in the kitchen when she is reading recipes or watching TV on it. 

2. A new bottle of perfume in a lovely light floral scent to remind her of the impending Spring. 

3. Kitchen tools to feed her cooking and baking addiction.

4. Or these, for when she gets her Southern Belle on.

5. Reindeer Noses, because no stocking is complete without a sweet treat.

6. Beautiful measuring spoons. 

7. A new razor. 

8. A cute bottle stopper

9. New socks

10. Fun new makeup, just in time to help her get glam for New Years.

11. Cocktail Chit Chat Cards to spark great conversation at your next party. 

12. A pretty bauble for the tip of her stocking, like these lovely Kate Spade pearl earrings

This sums up The Gallivant's gift guides for this year! For inspiration on what to get your guy for don't miss this post and this post, and for more inspiration on gifts for gals be sure to check out this post

A few quick thoughts on gift giving....Gifting is a really fun part of Christmas time, especially for someone like me whose love language is totally giving gifts to the people they love. That being said, it is so easy to get sucked into the materialism vortex and forget the what this season is all about, as well as the spirit behind gifting in the first place. While I obviously had fun putting together our gift guides, I don't at all think that we need to spend loads of money at this time of year on gifts. To me, a meaningful gift simply says, "I love you so I thought of you, and this is something I hope will bring you joy." A gift like that doesn't need to be expensive at all--it could be a letter to someone you love about how much they mean to you, a stocking full of reasons why someone makes you laugh and brings joy to your life, an album filled with sweet memories that you share with the person you love. Get creative and have fun with it! Last year John painted the two bedrooms in the apartment that we were about to move into as my Christmas present and now whenever I sit at our desk, or wake up in our lovely Palladian Blue bedroom I think of that sweet and simple act and it means the world. At the end of the day, Christmas isn't about the gifts and Santa--it is about the birth of Jesus--and He is always enough

Merry merry,

Emily

P.S. Like what you are reading? Go ahead and subscribe by entering your email address into the form on the left-hand side of this page so that you never miss a post! Or, you can follow me on Bloglovin. Also, follow along with The Gallivant on  pinterest, instagram,  and Twitter!



2014 Stocking Stuffers for Him

Stockings are one of my very very  favorite parts of Christmas. My mom still puts together the most amazing stockings for our family, and opening them Christmas morning is always so special. Something I always appreciate is the thoughtfulness that she puts in, year after year, and the mix of whimsical and practical gifts in each of our stockings. It is really important to me to carry the stocking tradition into our marriage, so I have been giving stocking stuffers a lot of thought this year. Today I am sharing my top picks for the guys, and then later this week I will post the ladies edition! 

Stocking Stuffers for Him:

A gift guide full of great stocking stuffer ideas for the men in your life!

1.  A new travel mug.

2. A stack of pods for his expresso machine, to go with his new mug. (P.S. On the market for an expresso machine this Christmas? We love our Nespresso.)

3. A few mind games

4.  Some new flys for his kit.

5. Yellow snow

6.  Cashmere blend socks

7.  A potato gun, just for kicks. 

8.  A new razor

9.  A way to double his money (What man wouldn't want that?!)

10.  Leather bound National Park Atlases, including one specifically on the AT

11.  A lump of coal. (hehe)

What are some of your favorite Christmas traditions?

xoxo,

Emily

P.S. Like what you are reading? Go ahead and subscribe by entering your email address into the form on the left-hand side of this page so that you never miss a post! Or, you can follow me on Bloglovin. Also, follow along with The Gallivant on  pinterest, instagram,  and Twitter!