Holiday Wines Part I – The Chardonnay Line Up

Holiday Wines Part I – The Chardonnay Line Up

Before you know it, Thanksgiving will be here! In addition to all I’m grateful for, this has me thinking about wine. And dinner. Our table usually numbers more than 30. We’ve been known to have three turkeys (roasted, grilled, and deep fried) and everyone contributes their favorite side dishes. Many wines pair nicely with turkey, but when it comes to Thanksgiving Dinner, there is so much more happening! A beautifully roasted bird may take center stage at the buffet table, but the meal itself is all about the sides. We tend to overload our plates with those beloved side dishes—crowding that sliced turkey into a hodge-podge patchwork of fabulous flavors, textures, and colors. That’s right where tradition slowly changes and grows for the better. I mean, before JoJo joined our Thanksgiving celebration, we didn’t have jalapeño-spiked cheesy corn at the table. Now her Texas influence is an integral part of our annual tradition. For me, pushing some spicy, creamy corn into the mashed potatoes and gravy was an obvious move, but when Uncle Fran’s bittersweet orange-cranberry chutney mingled in . . . a serendipitous flavor bomb! Chardonnay is definitely one of the go-to favorites for Thanksgiving Dinner. It’s versatile yet familiar. And Chardonnay is known to play well with others. Whether you’re serving dinner this year or you’d like a nice bottle to present to your hosts, here’s a guide to some of our favorite Chardonnay trios for 2020. Lighter Chardonnay Trios For milder fare, we suggest a lighter Chardonnay. Think classic turkey dinner with simply prepared vegetable dishes, ambrosia salad, and Parker House rolls. We think these Chardonnays...
Holiday Wines Part II – The Reds

Holiday Wines Part II – The Reds

Red is the color deeply entwined with some of our strongest feelings—passion, love, rage, danger. It even symbolizes good luck. What better wine to bring to you next family gathering? For many reasons, the holidays are a great time to stock up on wine—to enjoy, to gift, and to collect. Like the color itself, red wines offer a spectrum of bold and dazzling varieties to enjoy. The Cabs tend to work nicely with most red meats, lamb, and a flavorfully prepared ahi tuna. We love Pinot Noirs for their versatility—most are both smooth and bold enough to work well with lighter fare such as roasted salmon or game fowl and heavier, classic dinner fare like Beef Wellington. Speaking of Beef Wellington and family gatherings—this is one of my family’s traditions! Many years ago, I gave my husband The New Basics Cookbook by Silver Palate authors Julee Rosso and Sheila Lukins. We’ve had decades of fun exploring so many cuisines and cultures through the recipes and informative anecdotes. Once beyond the chicken-nugget rite of passage, our kids joined us on the journey. While we each have our distinct preferences, we all look forward to Beef Wellington as our Christmas Eve tradition. In fact, my oldest—now living on that other coast—has asked for the recipe so many times that she’s receiving her own copy of The New Basics as a gift this year. Based on how tattered that original paperback is, I’m even springing for the hardcover edition. You can find that hallowed Beef Wellington recipe below. And if you want to find some great red wines, here are a few...
Introducing Hand-Tied Rose Bouquets

Introducing Hand-Tied Rose Bouquets

Roses are red, violets are blue, Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, here’s something new! Introducing hand-tied rose bouquets for our “What’s New?” feature. Did you know that the best time to cut roses is after 3 PM in the afternoon when they are highest in food reserves? For instance, here at GiftTree, we have plenty of tips and tricks on how to trim and arrange your florals, especially roses. We also found some great resources on how to choose the perfect vase and more for your flowers. Whether you are a green thumb or prefer to pick your florals up at the local market, knowing how to treat roses can be tricky. Below are some useful tips we’ve found to help your blooms last even longer:   When choosing from your garden or market, pick rose buds that have visibly begun to open but that are no more than one-third to one-half fully open. For example, the best cut roses will have just begun to unfurl. Always use clean, sharp pruners to prevent damaging the rose canes and spreading disease. This won’t affect your cut flowers but you don’t want to harm the plant in the process of cutting. Leave at least 3 leaves on the stem to feed the plant. Get the roses into water as soon as possible. If pruning from your yard, bring a bucket of water with you when you cut. If you do cut the roses outside without water, make sure to re-cut the stems indoors either underwater or immersed. Use either the floral preservative they come with or you can add...
Easy Ways to Add More Movement to Your Workday

Easy Ways to Add More Movement to Your Workday

Ladies and gentleman, welcome to a new decade! 2020 is officially under way and you know what that means? Resolutions are in full swing! Whether your focus is on healthy living, reading more, or trying something new, the new year is always exciting to start fresh! For example, one of the many things we like to do here at GiftTree is take group walks to a local park. It is essential to get away for a few minutes, grab some fresh air, and when the sun is out, get some much needed Vitamin D. Here are some creative and easy ways to add more movement to your workday!   11 Creative Ways to Incorporate Exercise Into Your Workday   Take the stairs – Throughout the day you should try and find as many ways to move, get up from your desk, and/or take the stairs if you can; even if you work on the first floor! Go for a walk outside – Take 10 to 15 minutes to walk outside, breathe some fresh air every day (weather permitting) and get re-energized for the rest of your day. Take advantage of an onsite or local gym during your lunch break – Many offices and campuses now offer onsite gyms that are either free or discounted. If you do not have access to one, check out the area to see if there are any studios or gyms for a quick sweat session! Sit on an exercise ball – Good posture while you work is a form of exercise. It can increase blood flow, improve your balance, and strengthen your core. Walk around...
Top 10 Holiday Gift Baskets

Top 10 Holiday Gift Baskets

GiftTree is here to save the day for your Holiday gift ideas! For example, our Top 10 Holiday gift baskets are suitable for all ages and will satisfy all personalities.  Need a gift for the chocolate lover, gourmet foodie, coffee and tea enthusiast, and the indulger? Therefore, GiftTree has something special for everyone. Find something unique and better than your normal go-to gift cards that will be sure to surprise and delight this holiday season. With Black Friday around the corner, GiftTree will be featuring exclusive offers you can’t miss! Stay tuned and check out our top picks:   Top 10 Best Holiday Gift Baskets The Crowd Pleaser From savory delights to luxury chocolate, they’ll remember your generous gesture as there’s plenty for everyone.   Grand Indulgence Gourmet Whether the occasion is personal or professional, a grand indulgence such as this promises to leave a grand impression. Some foods featured are Manzanilla Olives, Lindt Sea Salt chocolate (Extra Dark), Sea Salt Caramels, Chocolate Drizzled Popcorn, and Everything Bagel Cashews Fit for Royalty Gourmet A curated collection of our favorite confections and gourmet fare comes together in this stately herringbone and leather-trimmed serving tray. This unique basket presents a generous gift that’s perfect for any occasion. Starbucks® Season’s Greetings Holiday wishes make a big entrance in this abundant crate, filled with goodies for every coffee, cocoa and chocolate lover. As Good As Gold Set the gold standard in generosity with this classic woven gift basket filled with impressive gourmet fare, creating a perfect holiday gift for the gourmand in your life. Fruit and Gourmet Treasure Presented in a keepsake trunk,...
One Gift, Three Sizes: Why Tiered Gifting is the Easiest Way to Shop

One Gift, Three Sizes: Why Tiered Gifting is the Easiest Way to Shop

Have you kicked off your holiday shopping yet? Have you made your list and checked it twice? The season of giving is upon us and it’s never too early to start gifting and showing your appreciation. Whether you are shopping for friends, family members, or clients, GiftTree recently introduced Tiered Gifting for ease of shopping. If you are a business like us, your clients and relationships are what matter most; without them your business would simply not be the same. No one client is the same, as each relationship is unique in its own way. Our tiered gifting collection delights in giving impressive gifts in three sizes and price points. Therefore providing a solution that flexes your budget and sends the right message to every recipient whether you chose Classic, Grand, or Supreme. Here are a few options that come in three sizes:   Tiered Gifting Made Easy   The 5th Avenue Extravagance: Three fantastic bottles of wine are joined by savory and sweet gourmet pairings, hand-selected for quality and taste.   As Good As Gold Excellence: Personal and professional relationships alike will adore the delicious items inside this woven keepsake basket. It’s the perfect way to show your appreciation and gratitude, send best wishes and more.   Warm Winter Greetings Tower: Your personal friends and family or your close business relationships will unpack the delicious treats inside this five-box tower and enjoy a snowy evening indoors, brimming with chocolate cheer.     Merry & Bright Chocolate Duo: Days and nights will be merry and bright when this festive duo arrives! Perfect for thanking, sending best wishes and so much more.     Five...