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Chef Mathew Macartney of Chateau Yering Shares an Intriguing Salad Plate

While exploring the Australian Yarra Valley wine region, I was able to experience the five star, heritage- listed Victorian mansion. Chateau Yering, sitting on 250 acres, is a member of Relais & Chateaux. In the parlor, while enjoying scones and tea, I discovered Head Chef Mathew Macartney. Mathew oversees the Sweetwater Café and Elenore’s, a One Chef’s Hat in The Age Good Food Guide. Elenore’s has won numerous awards since Mathew arrived. He has also been a celebrity chef on Silversea’s cruise line the past two years. Chef Macartney’s talent speaks for itself in the recipe he chose to...

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Four Ocean Vodka Holiday Cocktails

When we visited Maui, we were fortunate to visit and tour Ocean Vodka. In addition to being impressed with the delicious product, family, marketing and mission, we were thrilled the product  was as good as we heard it was. Since then, we’ve been getting many of  their recipes and these holiday recipes were perfect for the upcoming season. If you ever have the opportunity to visit the Ocean Vodka facility, we’d encourage you to do so. In addition to sampling the product, learning about this philanthropic company who is producing organic products, helping native Hawaiians, growing by innovative concepts,...

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Executive Chef Bryan Dame of the Tides Beach Club

   Chef Bryan Dame has been partial to New England for over fifteen years. A graduate of New England Culinary Institute, Dame’s cooking combines the freshest local ingredients, traditional family recipes and modern technique. Starting out as Sous Chef at Simon Pearce in Vermont, Dame worked in several different capacities through the years.From Simon Pearce, Bryan spent time cooking at different inns and restaurants including the Inn at Little Washington in Washington, VA; Opus 251 in Philadelphia; Traditions Restaurant at Lake Sunapee Country Club in New Hampshire; and the Lyme Inn in Lyme, NH.As Executive Chef at the Tides...

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Maui’s Unique Spa Adventures

Award-winning spas offer ancient rituals with indigenous products. Surrounded by breath-taking mountains, soothing ocean breezes and a relaxing calm that permeates the island culture, a visit to Maui is not complete without indulging in at least one rejuvenating spa treatment. The word maui actually means “life, alive, to live” in the Hawaiian language. To the early peoples of Hawaii, the earth, the sea, and the mountains were all intertwined with a person’s health and well-being. Embracing that same philosophy today, Maui’s spas offer many indigenous treatments that have been passed down from generation to generation. The Spa at Travaasa...

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Maui Magic at Lumeria

To interior designer and architectural conservator, Xorin Balbes, there was something magical about the derelict property on the foothills of Maui’s Mt Haleakala. The land was special – he had felt its energy, but he’d also seen the dry rot that now invaded the buckled timber buildings that, a decade earlier, had housed pineapple pickers. So Xorin knew the onerous task he faced, but believed it was important to restore the unique 1909 authentic Craftsman style property with its “neo-classical and vernacular Japanese details”. So today, when you first round the corner of the driveway and take in the...

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Penthouse Perch: Uncommon Luxury at Inn and Spa at Loretto, Santa Fe, NM

Named for the historic Loretto Chapel that shares the grounds with this luxe hotel property, Inn and Spa at Loretto offers Santa Fe’s only penthouse. The lavish rooftop penthouse in the heart of Santa Fe delivers spectacular panoramic views of the historic New Mexican city from five separate terraces. Your own private elevator whisks you like a rock star away from the groupies into the spacious two-story suite. You arrive at lush living and dining areas that are decorated in understated southwestern elegance and designed to enhance the natural and cultural setting of the distinctive space. The fully appointed...

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Premchit Aromatic Prawns With Mango and Avocado Salad

This recipe is from Premchit in Phuket, Thailand – a destination spa devoted to wellness through diet, detoxification and other focused therapies. Premchit Prateap Na Thalang says: “Connections, between people, animals, plants, the earth, the sun; are life, past, present, future.” Premchit blends her inherited ancestral wisdom and family secrets with her own formal education in aromatherapy from the International Federation of Aromatherapists in London, with her intuitive cuisine and perfumery skills, to create highly enjoyable and effective therapeutic Ambrosias, Elixirs, Scents and Treatments for her EXPERIENCE | PREMCHIT Natural Wellness Retreats. Premchit Aromatic Prawns With Mango and Avocado...

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Philanshopit: Where Fashion Meets Philanthropy

Aubrey Cox and Hanna Koch hope to revolutionize the way people shop through their online storefront, Philanshopit.  Launched this November, Philanshopit offers a beautifully curated collection of apparel, home decor, accessories and jewelry. What separates Philanshopit from traditional shopping websites is a commitment to selling products from partners who “have a clear social impact statement in their mission.” Born from an idea that came to Aubrey while still in college, Philanshopit’s mission is to “provide socially responsible items without asking consumers to sacrifice style.” As companies with powerful movements such as TOMS continue to thrive, the goal of Philanshopit...

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Tatanka or Szarlotka from The Piano Rogue in Krakow

After a day of touring around Krakow, Poland, with history, delicious food, and tired bodies, a few of us just wanted to relax before returning to our hotel. Our guide had been nice enough to search the square to find the perfect spot, The Piano Rouge. What a treat to walk into this supper club where time had stopped and hear a father and daughter team singing “Unforgettable.” In its relaxing environment, I enjoyed a well-known traditional Polish cocktail, both refreshing and tasty, called Tatanka or Szarlotka. It translates to apple pie. Tatanka or Szarlotka Cocktail (Apple Pie) Ingredients: 1...

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Fire-Roasted Pumpkin Filled with Wild Mushroom Risotto and Mascarpone

Early in 2011, I had the opportunity to meet Chef Andrew Schloss. He was the celebrity chef at Rancho La Puerta and I was a guest presenter. While attending his class, we all participated. Since pumpkin was not available, acorn squash from the ranch garden was substituted quite well. Andy has authored 15 published cookbooks and appeared on many national television shows. This recipe is the one Andy and his wife serve at their own Thanksgiving Dinner for those who are vegetarians. It is also a great side dish. Fire-Roasted Pumpkin Filled with Wild Mushroom Risotto and Mascarpone Recipe...

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Fresh Mozzarella with Lobster Boursin and Habanero Jam on Toasted Brioche

I just love this appetizer.  It has so many of my favorite flavors coming together to create magic. You have sweet lobster, creamy mozzarella, garlicky Boursin and a spicy kick  of the habanero jam all nestled atop a buttery toasted brioche.  I like to eat this while sipping a nice Zinfandel.  Bite, sip, bite, sip…  Soon all worries are gone and I’m in a happy place.  Make these and join me in that happy place. Fresh Mozzarella with Lobster Boursin and Habanero Jam on Toasted Brioche Makes 30 Pieces The Brioche Cut brioche into half inch thick pieces and...

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