A Tasting Room Plus the How-To

Be Inspired Seasonally with Rita Calvert

Holiday celebrations are aren’t over yet with a swanky New Year’s celebration still to come. Spiff up your stemware be it champagne or wine goblets and get inspired with the glitzy ideas from Homestead Gardens.  The “Tasting Room” vignette was created for celebrations to dazzle…with you throwing a wine tasting at home. Dashing tabletop decor shown in the photos below will make the event an elegant but “simple for you” affair.

You don’t have to be a wine aficionado to have a tasting party. I’ve added tips and some recipe ideas below from Mirassou Vineyard’s chef, Jon Ashton and David Mirassou, which I found to be very helpful.

IMG_7005Greenery is still part of the program. Drape with glowing grapes, sparkles and festive accoutrements of the vine. Flowers tucked into the greens along with some graceful ribbon add the finishing touches.


 Chef Jon Ashton and David Mirassou’s Tips for Hosting a Memorable and Affordable Holiday Celebration

  • To stay within your budget, choose one or two of your favorite wine varietals. We like to offer guests both a red and a white – and then pair them with special holiday recipes that are both beautiful and delicious.
  • Be creative in how you display the food and wine. Try platters of varying heights, and accent food with fresh herbs. This extra effort takes only minutes – but really makes the difference between nice and spectacular.
  • Bring out your best dishes, cloth napkins, and wine glasses – you’ll help the environment by not using disposable products. If you don’t have enough, borrow some from a friend or family member. Mixing patterns keeps things interesting, plus your table will sparkle with the collection.
  • Try choose a warm color scheme, such as reds or maroons, deep greens and golds – it’s cold outside!
  • Download or create your own custom mix of holiday tunes. Music sets the tone, puts everyone in a good mood and doesn’t break the bank.







Grilled Shrimp with Orange-Chardonnay Mojo Glaze

 Recipe-Rosemary-GarlicBeefBouchetteRosemary-Garlic Beef Bouchette