It’s that time of year again, and I think this year more than ever, I’m relaxed and so ready to enjoy friends and family in holiday gatherings on every level. I’m not sure exactly why it is, but I finally feel settled up in these mountains and honestly don’t ever want to call any other place home. There is so much beauty and so much to be grateful for in every moment and it’s all the little things that sum up our lives and fill us with joy.
Maybe it’s because my mom recently bought a house up here too or because I have new friends to share some of this beauty with, but in any case, I’m really feeling like I’m finally home and exactly where I’m supposed to be in this world, and it’s a wonderful place to be mentally and physically… not to sound too cliche, of course 😉
Last year with Ecco Domani, I hosted a Friendsgiving on Thanksgiving with our great friends Josh and Rafi of FORM. They drove up for a Thanksgiving-Friendsgiving-weekend-staycation, and we had a blast. This year I’ll be spending the actual holiday with family so I thought I’d celebrate new friendships with an early impromptu Friendsgiving to kick off the holiday season and upgrade the everyday.
Raise a glass to new friends and old!
Anything goes at Friendsgiving!
What I love about Friendsgiving is that anything really goes and there’s no pressure to make everything perfect like there is on Thanksgiving. Maybe it’s just me, but I love that we don’t have to follow traditions on Friendsgiving, and that I don’t have to cook everything either. The mix of cooking, grabbing pre-made gourmet goodies, and potluck dishes and treats, makes this holiday fun and super easy.
Friendsgiving is just a dinner party!
We like to upgrade traditions around here, and who better to do that with than Ecco Domani Pinot Grigio and Merlot! Their Merlot has got to be my favorite! Though I like all of the Ecco Domani wines, their merlot has a fresh, but warm blackberry flavor that’s just divine. It also pairs well with most foods, so it’s nice to have on hand for those who prefer reds to white wines.
Along with my wintery rustic glam tablescape already set for the season, I created a mix of traditional Thanksgiving dishes like sweet potatoes, seasoned mashed potatoes and a small turkey, then and added chicken, butternut squash soup, and quinoa salad for color and flavor. What was lacking in convention and tradition was made up for in zest and originality and it was all delicious while still feeling celebratory.
We snacked on green grapes and olives and cheese as appetizers while we sipped our wine, so it was really nice to have a smaller dinner feast and not feel like we needed a nap after we ate. We’ll save that for Thanksgiving!
Sarah learned that if you leave your chair for even just a moment, Trevor will inevitably sneak up on it and try to finish your dinner for you! And if he wasn’t so cute, I’d reprimand him for it. Just LOOK at that face!
Dessert, Dessert, Dessert!
Generally Thanksgiving calls for pies, pies, pies… but because I really wanted to upgrade tradition on our Friendsgivng dinner, be a bit unconventional, and because I don’t actually like pie in any form at all, I said NO PIES, let’s try something different! Instead, I spent hours baking this lovely cinnamon buttermilk bunt cake… no, I totally bought it, because who has time for baking cakes? This moist yet crumbly little cake was especially delicious with Ecco Domani’s Pinot Grigio, which has a hint of citrus and delicate tropical fruit flavors.
Happy Holidays Lovecats!
* This post is brought to you by Ecco Domani… All opinions are my own.