Recipe: Chicory & Persimmon Salad with Ambassador Olivia Muniak

Recipe: Chicory & Persimmon Salad with Ambassador Olivia Muniak


MEET OUR AMBASSADOR : OLIVIA MUNIAK

Even though she grew up in New York City, Olivia Muniak has always had an affinity for the breezy louche sensibility of Italian aperitivo hour. She considers a long leisurely meal as an antidote to the hustle of daily life, as a way to slow down and be present. 

Her entertaining philosophy is simple: tables should be candlelit, begin the evening with a cocktail, and savor every bite of thoughtfully prepared food in between sips of good wine and conversation (and lots of laughter). 

In August of 2019, fueled by the idea of meals as a form of meaningful connection, Olivia launched La Cura Supper Club (La Cura is Italian for “the cure”), a six-course family style dinner, hosted in a private home or at a unique spot in Los Angeles.

In addition to a regular supper club, La Cura offers full-service catering, event and party planning. The website serves as an evolving compendium of what she’s cooking and a shoppable edit of her favorite entertaining and kitchen essentials. Olivia lives and works in Los Angeles, California.



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Recipe: Black Manhattan with Ambassador Olivia Muniak

Recipe: Black Manhattan with Ambassador Olivia Muniak


MEET OUR AMBASSADOR : OLIVIA MUNIAK

Even though she grew up in New York City, Olivia Muniak has always had an affinity for the breezy louche sensibility of Italian aperitivo hour. She considers a long leisurely meal as an antidote to the hustle of daily life, as a way to slow down and be present. 

Her entertaining philosophy is simple: tables should be candlelit, begin the evening with a cocktail, and savor every bite of thoughtfully prepared food in between sips of good wine and conversation (and lots of laughter). 

In August of 2019, fueled by the idea of meals as a form of meaningful connection, Olivia launched La Cura Supper Club (La Cura is Italian for “the cure”), a six-course family style dinner, hosted in a private home or at a unique spot in Los Angeles.

In addition to a regular supper club, La Cura offers full-service catering, event and party planning. The website serves as an evolving compendium of what she’s cooking and a shoppable edit of her favorite entertaining and kitchen essentials. Olivia lives and works in Los Angeles, California.



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Thanksgiving Florals with Ambassador Bess Piergrossi

Thanksgiving Florals with Ambassador Bess Piergrossi


There’s no better way to set a festive table than bringing the outdoors in with seasonally-inspired centerpieces. And with Thanksgiving right around the corner, we thought it’d be the perfect time to sit down with the queen of foraging herself, Bess Piergossi. If you haven’t stumbled across Bess, it’s time to take a deep dive through her Instagram to re-energize your creative spirit. She’s one of our talented Shoppe Ambassadors who resides on a quaint farm in Southern Maine. You’ll find picturesque images of her New England property, abundant in flowers and birds, along with her incredibly charming 1740’s farmhouse. Everything she touches turns to gold, and that includes creating a perfectly imperfect foraged tablescape. Read on to gather inspiration and all the tips and tricks you’ll need to create your own unforgettable scene this holiday!

Meet Bess

I refer to myself as a “front yard florist”, gathering flowers and making arrangements from the gardens on our little farm, Hitchfoot Farm. My husband and I live in Southern Maine, in an old 1740’s farmhouse. We raise chickens, ducks, and two loving geese that transform our yard into a fairytale. Our property borders an old dairy farm, and nothing feels closer to heaven than picking flowers in the garden as I watch the cows graze. I have a passion for design and farming, and flower farming/floral design is the perfect blend of those two passions.

Bringing the Outdoors In

I like to fully embrace the seasons by bringing nature into my home, whether it’s an arrangement on the dining room table, or greenery on the counter. I find the seasons to be rejuvenating, and renewing. In the spring, tulips and flowering branches signal new growth and new beginnings. In the summer, wildflowers and roses represent freedom and vibrancy. In the fall, maple branches and dahlias warm the house with their rich color, and in the winter evergreens and winterberry celebrate the solstice and reflection. These floral reminders help ground me throughout the year, and bring beauty and happiness into home.

Let the foraging begin…

I’m most inspired by things that aren’t flowers–when I go outside and go for a walk. I love to observe my surroundings for shapes, colors and textures that I find interesting. I’ve made some of my favorite bouquets from foraged materials from grassy fields, the side of the highway, or the deep woods. I like to start all arrangements with greenery–it’s like the skeleton of an arrangement- it helps support the flowers, both physically and artistically.

Favorite Fall Foraged Greenery

Blackberry Vines

Ferns

Apple Branches

Dried Grass

Wild Rose Hips

Asparagus Fronds

*Tip/disclaimer: when using foraged materials–make sure what you’re harvesting isn’t an invasive species, and if it is, make sure you’re handling it/disposing of it properly.

HARVEST TIME

After foraging for greenery, it’s time to collect the flowers. Flowers can be foraged (even a dandelion looks incredible in an arrangement), picked from a garden, or purchased at a farmers market, or local grocer. There’s no right or wrong answers when choosing flowers for an arrangement. I like to choose flowers within a similar color palette and of various sizes (some small flowers and small larger blooms).

Favorite Fall Foraged Flowers

Wild Aster

Wild Carrot (Queen Anne’s Lace)

 

Favorite Fall Garden Flowers

Dahlias

Cosmos

English Roses

TIME TO SORT

This step isn’t necessary, but it is my favorite. Fill up several jars up with water and sort your greenery/flowers by variety–one type for each jar. This step reminds me of setting up a painter’s palette–I can clearly see what my palette for the arrangement looks like and how many of each flower I have. It’s a beautiful display.

BRING ON THE LAYERS

For a sturdy arrangement, place a flower frog or a ball of chicken wire in the bottom of your vase. Start with the greenery as your first layer. I use the thickest branches first, and then layer in the finer greens. Next, layer in your largest blooms, your focal points. Then add your smaller blossoms throughout as a supporting accent. With a solid base of greenery, it only takes a few blooms to make a statement arrangement.

THE RESULTS

shop Bess’ table

Cara Edged Table Runner

$80

Stonewashed Linen Napkin S/4

$46

Small Jago Vase

$65

Looking for more? Explore Shoppe’s Thanksgiving collection
to help prepare the perfect feast.


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