Rolling vineyards surrounded by magnificent gardens modeled after Monet’s estate at Giverny provided the perfect backdrop for WIPA’s monthly networking mixer at the Church Estate Vineyards in Malibu.

Ellen enjoyed the Vineyard Cocktail made
by Good Gracious! Events' Mixologist Dan Smith. The vodka was donated by Stockholm Vodka, Stockholm Imports, Inc.

Artful flower arrangements were scattered on tables throughout the estate. It was the perfect touch by Bound, A Floral and Event Studio and Floral Sense LLC.

We were served festive beverages and a buffet of cheeses, artisanal breads, crackers and summer fruit.  The event was hosted by Good Gracious! Events who did an amazing job in the presentation, service, and taste!
Fresh water made special with ripe summer peaches and fragant thyme.

After the cocktail hour we strolled through the gardens down to the presentation area which was setup with exotic tents provided by Raj Tents and decadent white leather couches provided by Form Décor.

After an informative presentation, we were all anticipating a fabulous luncheon by the lake from Good Gracious! Events. 
The luncheon setup was luxurious and the food was sumptuous.  Wonderful, local, fresh ingredients beautifully presented and delicious to eat! 
Grand Soirees Event Design and Coordination produced the adorable menus in little gift boxes. They also created all the printing for the event. Everything was well thought out and skillfully executed.

The perfect touch was the cappuccino station by The Cappuccino Club, Inc., and the delectable mini doughnuts with assorted toppings offered by The Fry Girl Inc.

This fairyland venue made us feel that we had flown to Europe for a mini vacation somewhere in Italy or France.  It was the perfect afternoon getaway.  We could all imagine catering a magical wedding at Church Estate Vineyards.

To see the professional photos, you can view them by Imagery Immaculate Photography by clicking here.

Other generous sponsors for the event that were not mentioned were:

Lawry's Lavender Wedding

Leon and Seung contacted me in late January to coordinate their wedding.  They are long-time guests of Lawry’s and were excited to have their reception with us.  At first they thought of having an evening reception but, when they saw our wedding luncheon prices, they decided to have a daytime event. 
Leon wanted to create an evening atmosphere for the reception.  He had a sparkling drape as a backdrop for the dining room and added dramatic up-lighting for color and great special effects.

The wedding ceremony took place at a local church where the mothers of the couple lit the candles that would light Leon and Seung’s unity candle.

Once arriving at Lawry’s for the cocktail reception, the guests enjoyed a sparkling champagne punch and delicious hors d’eouvres

Once I directed the guests to the Main dining room, Leon and Seung made their grand entrance. They looked so happy together!

Fremaux Photography captured all the beautiful colors and lighting that created the evening feel to the room.  It most definitely had an “evening” ambiance.

The décor and flowers featured hues of lavender, light blues, and fuchsia.
The beautiful cake was provided by Fantasy Frostings

Spring colors highlighted all of the tables

The newlyweds enjoyed the party with some great music and friends

The best part of my job is seeing such a successful event and knowing that everyone enjoyed the celebration

Thanks to Leon and Seung for choosing Lawry’s for this special day!

Lawry's Why We 'Lique' Liqueurs Tasting

These are not your mother's liqueurs. Back in the day, they were an after dinner drink you politely sipped on its own. It has become extreemly versatile and modern.

A lot of people shy away from liqueurs because they think they can't enjoy them in their cocktails. However, this couldn't be farther from the truth. This is an exciting time for bartenders and drinkers alike. While our traditional Martinis and cocktails will always be there and never go out of style; liqueurs provide a new variety of mixable cocktails. There is something for everyone to enjoy!

Lawry's featured a "Liqueurs and Why We 'Lique' Them!" tasting, late April. Co-hosting the event was The Tasting Panel Magazine. We are fans of tastings and enjoy bringing the latest and the greatest spirits for our guests to sample. This event showcased a large assortment of liqueurs, too many to list in this blog.

We picked a few to give you a "taste!"
A special thanks to all the representatives that shared their wisdom on liqueurs with our guests. We thank our wonderful Chef Walter for creating tempting hors d'oeuvres and mini desserts. Lastly, to Jeremie Fremaux for the wonderful pictures.

Enjoy and let's begin!

Agavero Orange Tequila Liqueur
What makes it special? Agavero is a blend of 100 % agave silver tequila infused with agave nectar and natural essence of Mexican oranges. This liqueur is 64 proof and can be served alone or used in cocktails, such as Margaritas.
Roka Liqueur
Look for this on your next trip to BevMo. Roka liqueur launched in September of 2010 and promises to delight your cocktail hour.
Roka is a vodka based liqueur that offers you 3 fantastic flavors; Caramel, Apple, and Chocolate.
Why it's special? Roka is a brand new category of liquor, combining the neutral taste of vodka with some of today’s favorite flavors.
Serve Roka on the rocks, as a shot, a martini, or a snifter. Any way you pour it, you’ll love it!
It comes in a lightweight, contemporary aluminum bottle that prevents breakage.
Some of our favorite mixes include:
                                     Caramel Roka with champagne or
                                     Apple Roka, Jameson, and cranberry juice!

Patron XO Cafe
Patron XO Café uses a blend of Arabica coffee and Patron Silver tequila, which results in just the right balance of sweetness and dryness for a unique taste. It blends ultra premium tequila and the natural essence of the finest coffee. Unlike most coffee liqueurs, the taste is more dry than sweet.

This liqueur is excellent for sipping with a dessert, such as a flan.

The Patron bottle is unique in that each beautifully designed glass bottle is hand made and individually numbered. Each bottle is a collectable!

Indulge in nutty taste sensations with PisaThis liqueur offers you the combination of hazelnut, almond, and pistachio. Alone these nuts are distinctive in taste, but once blended they form the true original essence of the liqueur Pisa.
When we tried it, we noted the great scent and flavor.
It tastes delightful straight at room temperature, or add rocks. I enjoyed it with a simple splash of coke.

Our recommendation is to create a cheese platter and enjoy Pisa with some nuts and charcuterie!

Solerno is 80% proof and  is made in Sicily from Sanguinello blood oranges. Each fruit is hand picked at the height of the season from sun-drenched groves.
We enjoyed tasting a delicious summer treat:
Sicilian Cooler with 2 parts Solerno, ¾ Campari, ¾ parts fresh squeezed lemon juice and 3 parts soda water.

Limoncello is an Italian lemon liqueur mainly produced in Southern Italy. It is  made from Sorrento lemon peels. Limoncello is served chilled as an after-dinner digestivo. It is an increasingly popular ingredient in cocktails, as it imparts a strong lemon flavor without the sourness or bitterness of lemon juice.
We love recipes passed down from generation to generation, and Limoncello is another example of this tradition. Limoncello’s recipe was handed down to Manuela Zaretti-Carling form her Nonna in Italy. Ventura County, California, is home to some of the most amazing round lemons in the world. Ventura Limoncello’s liqueurs are all natural and handcrafted.
One cocktail recipe to try is Luis' Kiss.
Frangoli has been on the market for 5 years, and it continues to expand the use of its liqueur by encouraging you to try it on ice cream, liven up a fruit salad, or serve it with a barbecue.

It’s a great liqueur for brunch, when served over rocks or with champagne (replacing the Mimosa).
In the bottle you will find a generous content of whole, wild strawberries. We love the look of the floating strawberries as a garnish for your cocktail.

Galliano Ritretto
Galliano Ritretto is a delicious coffee flavored liqueur sourced from the best Arabica and Robusta coffees to capture the essence of ‘un ristretto,’ the concentrated and short espresso adored by Italians.

Try Chocolate Martini cocktail with Galliano Ritretto, espresso, 1 tsp of sugar and toped with chocolate sprinkles.
Glayva is a blend of the finest Scotch malt whisky. The versatileness of Glayva could make it your liqueur of choice year round. They have come up with great recipes for you to enjoy while you are relaxing with your friends around the fire on a cold winter’s day or partying into the night on a warm summer’s evening.

Here are just a few examples of why we love Glayva:
Summer Recipe: Make a refreshing pitcher of Glayva and lemonade with lots of ice and cut up lemons and limes.
Or enjoy Glayva in the purest form on ice or in a hot toddy.

Botticelli- Gourmet Cappucino


Tequila Rose- Strawberry Cream

Thatcher's Organic Liqueur

Thatcher's Organic Artisan Liqueurs make their organic liqueurs the old fashioned way; by hand in small batches, using all-natural, sustainably farmed, organic ingredients.
It's all about Blood Orange cocktails this year! With every sip you'll enjoy the juicy flavor of an orange. Thatcher's blood orange liqueur recommends trying their Blood Orange Margarita! 

Chartreuse is strong in flavor due to the 130 or so herbs that are blended and distilled by Chartreuse monks. This historic spirit was developed in 1764 by monks in France. It has a pronounced anice flavor. To bring out its entire flavor, it should be consumed very cold, even on the rocks.
The inside story goes that Chartreuse was a coveted recipe by Napoleon, known only by two monks. He stole the recipe in 1605 but could not get it replicated. This is a great spirit for the expert mixologist or the bartender that wants to explore.
Cheers from our Beverage Manager, Jessica Hoffer, and our General Manager, Todd Johnson.
We received great feedback from guests who were excited to learn more about all the new possibilities with these fabulous spirits. We thank them for joining us and taking part of this fun and educational evening.


My first visit to the Craven’s Estate was when it was featured as the Showcase House in 2010.  I fell in love with this venue and decided to promote the site for future weddings. This beautiful estate is located in a residential neighborhood once known as the “Millionaire’s Row.” To read more about the estate, click here. Soon afterwards, I was contacted by Alice and Dennis, who wanted Lawry’s to cater their wedding and were also looking for a venue.  Coincidently, they were looking for locations in the Pasadena area. I immediately sent them to the Craven’s Estate and they loved it!

Their amazing photographer Sara from One-Love Photography did a fantastic job capturing their special moments.

The reception them was filled with spring colors and lots of buttons.

The reception was tented and decorated with graceful chandeliers…

 Alice and Dennis have a long history with Lawry’s and wanted to make sure their guests experienced our Lawry’s signature Spinning Bowl Salad.

Dennis’ dream came true to be a Lawry’s carver and wear the famous medallion.
The wedding was a huge success.  They brought in a photo booth for entertainment and Pinkberry for a late night treat for their guests.