TGIF! What a whirlwind week. It’s no surprise that there is A LOT that goes into a new business, but Jill and I have been working feverishly to get ourselves off the ground this week and loving every minute! We’ve had some great opportunities to network and grow our knowledge base. You can read all about them on Pursuing Our Passion. Thanks to all of you for the positive response so far!
This week hasn’t been all work, however. Last night, after receiving a tweet from my good friend Kristin, I had an incredible opportunity to visit the Stephen Hamilton studio for a FREE wedding tasting and vendor event! If you haven’t heard of Stephen Hamilton, you must check out his site.
Foodie heaven, right?
Anyway, back to the event When Jill and I arrived — she was my date for the evening — we were in awe of the splendor that surrounded us. Wedding vendors all over the city of Chicago went all out for the attendees, dressing the entire studio in glitz, glamour and sparkle.
Apologies in advance for the slightly out of focus photos — I did the best I could in the mood lighting
Eventually, I decided to bite the bullet and use a flash in order to make sure these beautiful cakes came out. How gorgeous is the one in the center?! It’s bold, bright and delicious. Three amazing qualities!
Jill and I started by checking out the cocktails. We were so impressed by the setup: a whole range of fresh fruits that allowed us the chance to create our own ideal mix.
I chose blackberries, raspberries and strawberries with fresh mint, rum and lime. It was a delicious mixture! They also added club soda and simple syrup. It was very sweet, but overall a nice way to unwind on a Thursday evening.
Next up, we decided to visit the Indian and Korean BBQ stands. Crazy it sounds, I’m not too familiar with either type of food, so I was very intrigued!
Here was my Indian plate, which included Naan covered in a green and peanut sauce, samosas, a Tandoori chicken skewer and bhel puri — the mini ice cream cone!
I was a big fan of everything on this plate. The bhel puri was such a tiny taste that I didn’t get as good of a feel for it, but the flavors were so intense and unique that everything blended together quite well.
At the Korean BBQ table, we were given the opportunity to make tacos!
The sauce was slightly spicy but not overwhelming. This was the perfect mini size for doing a lot of tasting. I’d love to explore more of Korean BBQ and venture into other recipes.
After the main meal, it was time to check out the desserts!
This dessert table came courtesy of (cacao) sweets & treats in Chicago. Seriously — out of this world! The milk chocolate below was covered in sea salt and was the perfect combination of salty and sweet. After taking a bite, I realized that there was a fudge brownie center.
The white chocolate was just as mouthwatering. It melted into a creamy, coconutty treat.
I am definitely a fan and have made it a mission to find this bakery someday!
Next up — CUPCAKES!!
Our first stop was Sugar Bliss , which had the most adorable flower tops. I tried red velvet. The cream cheese frosting was very rich, but tasted wonderful.
Our next stop was More cupcakes. We were super impressed with this company because they brought pretty much any flavor you could imagine: salted caramel, red velvet, rich chocolate…and cocktails! They had piña colada, white Russian and more. I went with the margarita, which came with a real lime and salt on top! I felt like I was drinking eating the real thing.
Last but not least, we tried a Mexican chocolate cupcake — hot, hot, hot!
This cupcake had a hard outer shell with a creamy chocolate mousse inside. It was also a bit spicy! I was not quite as big of a fan of this one, but it was still an interesting take on your typical flavor.
By the end of the night, we were on a major sugar high — good thing the cupcakes were small enough so that we could try more of the flavors I’m all about the volume eating!
Here I am with my “fiance” for the evening!
It was a really great event and I look forward to checking into some of these businesses in the future. It helped generate a lot of ideas for my own wedding, too. Free food and great ideas? I’d call that a success!
What’s your take on the cupcake craze taking over weddings? Do you prefer cake?