#SCBDExclusive Last Minute Guide to #CincoDeMayo

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Don’t feel like celebrating #CincoDeMayo at home this year? Here are some great options if you plan on going out!

Galli (45 Mercer St, NY) will be having $5 Margherita, Lili’s Curves:

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Ingredients:

  • two ounces of Esplon Silver
  • one ounce fresh lime
  • one ounce black pepper infused simple syrup
  • spoonful of purated strawberries
  • two dashes of orange bitters

Combine, mix, serve, and enjoy!

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Celebrate Cinco de Mayo or better yet Cinco de Derby at Jacques 1534 and enjoy $10 select cocktails including Fishermans Julep, El Diablo Loco, or Uptown at The Pitch & Fork with $10 Mint Juleps and Margaritas!

Come sit, relax, and sip on the rooftop at Social Bar & Grill they will have $20 Corona buckets & $5 Margaritas to celebrate.

Upper West side restaurant Amigos (2888 Broadway) is the perfect place to celebrate Cinco de Mayo with  your amigos! And there are more than enough options for every taste and mood: the Bull Dog, a frozen margarita with a Corona; the Mexi-Cali Lunazul tequila, Cointreau, and fresh lime juice; a Hot Tamale with Corralejo Reposado tequila, fresh jalepeno, lime juice, mango, and a chili salt rim; Los Amigos with El Mayor Plata tequila, Barenjager honey liqueur, and cinnamon orange garnish; and the El Gallo Avion Plata tequila, passion fruit liqueur, and lime juice.

Crystal Springs Resort (1 Wild Turkey Way, Hamburg, NJ) is celebrating Cinco de Mayo on Sunday May 5 with a free tequila tasting, a special Mexican-inspired menu and signature cocktails at Crystal Tavern.

From 1pm – 4pm, representatives from Patron tequila will be pouring free samples of Patron Silver, Reposado, Anejo, XO Café and Citronge, and giving away free gifts

All day, Crystal Tavern will serve special cocktails and a menu of Mexican favorites in addition to the regular a la carte menu. Cocktails ($12) include  Cilantro Julep Patron Anejo, fresh lime juice, pineapple juice, amber agave nectar and cilantro leaves; Ginger Lemon Spice Patron Silver, Patron Citronge, simple syrup, fresh ginger, fresh lemon juice, pineapple juice; Mexican Espresso Martini Patron XO Café Dark, Patron XO Café, espresso; Sweet Orange Patron Reposado, Cointreau, fresh lime juice, simple syrup, bitters; Pina Coronado Patron Silver, fresh lemon juice, pineapple juice, elderflower liqueur, vanilla/cinnamon syrup.

Cheers! Feliz Cinco de Mayo!

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#SCBDExclusive: Spring Trends Luncheon with DailyFashionista.com CEO, Dana Prigge’

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I never thought I’d say this but I’m really getting into fashion lately! This past Saturday, Dana Prigge’, Editor in Chief of Dailyfashionista.com and popular
columnist at Joonbug shared her must-have Spring pieces at Neiman
Marcus in Garden State Plaza and I had the honor of attending.

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Dana at Neiman Marcus

Some of the trends that Dana highlighted were: Florals, Arm
Candy, Flirty Footwear, Colorful Clutches, Retro-sunglasses and
Bowties.

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Dana showing the spring trends

.I learned that pastels are a huge trend for this spring, which is something I am already on top of! Also, high top sneakers are making a come back. Some of my
favorite looks were the DVF wrap-dress, McQueen mirror sunglasses, Rachel Zoe lucite
jewelry, Pop of orange Zanotti cut-out heels, Lavendar Rebecca Minkoff
cross body bag with grommet details, Balenciaga purple purse,Alice and Olivia moto jacket, Ash wedge sneaker, and the AG distressed denim jeans. I definitely plan on purchasing wedges similar to the Ash wedges Dana showed us.

My favorite wedges

My favorite wedges

After eating our delicious salads provided by Neiman Marcus, the luncheon ended with a delicious dessert, banana pudding & cupcakes from Magnolia Bakery. We also received a beautiful Neiman Marcus bag filled with perfumes and chocolate by Bellina Chocolate for the event.

If you haven’t heard of Dana, here’s a bit of information about her:

Dana Prigge’, Editor in Chief of Dailyfashionista.com  comes from a family of journalist. Dana is emerging as a resource for various respected media entities and has been quoted in The New York Post, many popular online fashion & media sites, along with being featured as the Style Editor of Swimspot.com, popular Lifestyle Columnist at JoonbugNY and can be found interviewing celebs on the red carpet.She attends some of the most exciting NYC events, sits at Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week, interviews celebrities & socialites, reports on the hottest trends and attends exclusive charity functions. Ever the enthusiast, Dana created Dailyfashionista.com as a positive web site that celebrates the inherent beauty that is within all of us. Looked to for her daily dose of fashion inspiration, Dana provides inner power and confidence to people everywhere.

Look out for more of my favorite fashion and beauty products!

Sara SCBD Logo Edited

 

#SCBDExclusive: Behind The Scenes & Lunch at DBGB Kitchen & Bar

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A saying I’ve learned to live by and well have always lived by is: when a good opportunity comes around, you should take it. Well almost two weeks ago, I was invited to go see the prep kitchen and get a behind the scenes look to the charcuterie and pastry program to Daniel Boulud‘s restaurants in New York City. I was invited to go with a guest so, SCBD team member Kelsey Jelling came with me. We could not put down this once in a lifetime opportunity and it was definitely a day to remember.

When we arrived to the prep kitchen in the East Village we were greeted by Lauren, who does the pr for all of the Daniel Boulud restaurants in the city. We were welcomed to enjoy some complimentary coffee & pastries before our tour began. I made sure I tried a croissant and some coffee and it did not disappoint. I was ready for the tour to begin.

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Our tour began by seeing where all the breads are made and packaged including making our own baguettes (which was the best baguette I ever tasted thus far). We also where the pastries are made and maintained before the charcuterie part of our class began. I was definitely starting to crave all the sweets I was seeing.

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Next, it was time to see the charcuterie department. We started off by seeing where some of the casing was done but then we went into the ‘cold’ room where all the important stuff goes down. We saw a how they make their famous rilette which we also got try and it was a delicious! A rilette is a mix of braised pork shank that was slow cooked for 48 hours, roasted vegetables, oil and seasonings.

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After we finished with the charcuterie part of the class, it was time for my favorite part, our lunch on the house at DBGB Kitchen and Bar. I’ve heard so many great things about Daniel Boulud‘s cooking and after attending the class I knew what I wanted to try. We started off with cocktails, since Kelsey and I both liked fruity cocktails, our waiter recommended The Dicken’s which was fruity with a bit of spice but was delicious and I’d definitely get it again.

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While we were looking over the menu and picking out our appetizers, we also got to meet Daniel Boulud, we were so in awe we didn’t take a picture with him but it was surely an honor. For my appetizer, I  tried the Fried Egg and Wild Mushroom Appetizer which was delicious and creamy, it was a perfect balance of egg and mushrooms. I decided to try the famous DBGD Dog, especially after learning about how all their hot dogs & sausages are made in-house, I was crazy not to! It certainly did not disappoint and was served with some delicious homemade fries. We also got a complimentary sausage de jamon sent from the kitchen, which was great!

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The Chocolate Only Cake

We were getting so full, but could not turn down dessert so I decided to get the ‘Chocolate Only’ Cake which is by far the lightest, most heavenly piece of chocolate cake I’ve ever had. It was a fun-filled, food day that I would never forget and I would love to come back and eat at DBGB Kitchen and Bar again!

Sara SCBD Logo Edited

#SCBDExclusive NYC Craft Beer Festival- Spring Seasonals

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The beer events just keep on coming and if you enjoyed the Big Brew Beer Festival you’ll love this! The NYC Craft Beer Festival Spring Seasonals Edition will be making its way to NYC on March 30th at Lexington Avenue Armory (68 Lexington Avenue between 25th and 26th streets). The festival has two sessions to choose from:

SESSION 1: General Admission 1:30 PM – 4:00 PM

 VIP & Connoisseur 12:30 PM – 4:00 PM

SESSION 2: General Admission 7:00 PM – 9:30 PM /

VIP & Connoisseur 6:00 PM – 9:30 PM

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How it works: Everyone will be given a tasting glass and have the opportunity to try unlimited 2 oz tastings of approximately 150 craft beers from all over the country.  Food will be available for purchase for all attendees and there will be a selection of retail vendors on-site.  VIP and Connoisseur will have the first hour to themselves to sample these great brews and Connoisseurs will have a private lounge with rare selections and passed hors d’oeuvres throughout the session.  They will also be offering expert seminars for all attendees (first-come first-serve) that highlight key aspects of the craft beer industry including pairings, business, and more!

Check out some pictures from last year’s fest:

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General Admission Tickets purchased in advanced start at $55. To purchase tickets, click here, they will be selling out quickly!

Cheers!

Sara SCBD Logo Edited

#SCBDExclusive Interview with Christina Aurrichio, Owner of Chi Flo

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This month, Christina Aurrichio, an FDU graduate like myself, launched an amazing new, up and coming fashion line, Chi Flo. The line is creative and unlike anything out there because of Christina’s passion and love for drawing and fashion. When I saw that she was launching the company and her premiere line, Grimm Street I had to get the 411 and have my readers get a first look because I see Chi Flo going places and you’ll probably want to buy your first shirt after you read this.

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Christina Aurrichio, Owner of Chi-Fl0
Photo Credit: Rob Roselli

SCBD: Thanks Christina for letting me interview you and give my readers the first scoop on your new line, Chi Flo. It’s great to see another peer and fellow Jersey Girl make their mark. Who or what inspired you to come up with Chi Flo?

CA: No problem Sara! Thanks for all the support and promoting, I’m very impressed by all you’ve accomplished as well. What inspired me to create Chi Flo was a mixture of things. I am very passionate about my artwork and always wondered how to properly display it. I also am very passionate about fashion and the whole city scene. You know—the girls in the city with a sketchpad  in their backpack, a cup of coffee in hand, and a keen sense of style…just trying to make it big. Chi Flo is all about the balance of my artwork, the fashion sense, and actual occurrences life occurrences. It also showcases my love for making light of bad situations. For instance, the BAD GIRLFRIEND shirt should be worn by girls with a sense of humor who have been maybe labeled as a Bad Girlfriend before, or just know how to joke about themselves. It’s just so much bigger than a t-shirt line for me, and I hope someday it catches on.

SCBD: How long have you been drawing for? What’s the best drawing you’ve made?

CA: I’ve been drawing since I was a little kid, maybe about 7. My big brothers and mother were always extremely creative and seeing them creating music/crafts/drawings made me want to do the same. I can remember looking at my Flinstones storybooks, loving the character Dino and just taking a piece of paper and drawing him. It was always an exciting challenge to get better at drawing every time I picked up a pencil. It still is an exciting challenge. I’ve never been classically trained in drawing. I think that says a lot as well.

My favorite drawing I drew would be the “Not Your Savior”.

SCBD: Chi Flo focuses on using original artwork, why do you think that’s crucial to any successful fashion line?

CA: I  think nowadays, every time you turn a corner someone is creating a new t-shirt line from scratch or a website that re-sells already made t-shirts the buyer purchased wholesale. Granted, I am supportive of anyone doing so. However, most of those people aren’t coming up with the designs themselves. They are either Google-imaging “skull and crossbones” or “graffiti letters” and just placing them on a shirt. Again, those people are smart and I support them. They may also sell faster because they sell shirts that are trendy with the times. But myself personally, I just couldn’t come up with another carbon-copy t-shirt line. I thought “I have the ability to create designs, why not use that to my full potential?” Plus, what’s better than wearing a shirt that no one else has? If I had a dollar for every shirt I see with an inverted cross, or a typical sugar skull, I wouldn’t have to hustle a t-shirt line!

SCBD: Chi Flo is not just a fashion line but it is also a lifestyle, what does that mean to you and your customers?

CA: When I say that Chi Flo is a lifestyle, I truly believe it is. Chi Flo sells shirts with meaning. For example, the “Not Your Savior” shirt is my favorite design because I drew it when I was going through a bad break-up. It was purely from my heart. To me, Chi Flo shirts are like listening to a good song. If you can relate to the lyrics, or in this case what the shirt says, then the design will jump out at you and mean so much more. Chi Flo is self-expression, but in a cute way!

SCBD: Your first line, The Grimm Street Collection is unlike any line I’ve seen. You’ve mentioned that every collection tells a story. What is the story behind The Grimm Street collection?

CA:The story behind the Grim Street collection is a blend of things. As I had mentioned earlier, I designed the Not Your Savior after a bad break-up. Literally, I couldn’t ‘save’ the other person and had to focus on myself. Next came the Bad Girlfriend. That was an “insult” thrown at me in retaliation. Why not wear it on my shirt then? After graduation and difficult situations, I started to find myself. I drew the Chief Flo as a representation of discovering who I was and my artistic ability. The Street Pigeon represents the cool-side to fashion and just feeling like a boss. Finally, the Smiths Tribute reads the words “Honey Pie, You’re Not Safe Here” . That’s my favorite line from a Smiths song. It represents power and rising to the top. Whoever was going to get in my way wouldn’t be “safe there”. That kind of thing.

Take a peek into The Grimm Street Collection (photos by Rob Roselli):

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SCBD: What shirt is your best seller?

CA: My best seller is the Street Pigeon! I think it is amazing how girls and guys both love the design. I give myself props for that.

SCBD: What’s your favorite shirt and why?

CA: My favorite is the Chief Flo because I truly think the design is beautiful. When I was drawing it on paper, I looked in the mirror so I could outline a face and hair (I was alone so I used myself as the face model). From there, I just drew everything else and made her a sugar skull. I think it’s great that people probably don’t know they’re wearing my face on their shirt!

SCBD: I ordered the Street Pigeon shirt and received it really quickly last week which was awesome. I loved the packaging and sticker that came with it. What separates Chi Flo from other designers out there? 

CA: Great to hear! I think what separates Chi Flo is the whole ‘hometown’ feel. I designed the shirts and everything. A good friend of mine, Rob Roselli, photographed the pictures. Another friend of mine modeled the pictures and more friends of mine will continue to model for me. I created Chi Flo strictly from what I know and love. I’m just not trying to be anyone else. The packaging ties in with the hometown feel because I wrap it myself and put in a thank you note signed personally by me.

SCBD: Chi Flo seems to be really taking off, where do you see Chi Flo in 5 years? 

CA: I hope it continues to take off. I need to constantly keep on top of the advertising and promotion. I stay humble and noticeably hopeful through it all. I have so much stock left still, but I knew I would. I took a big chance. Plus, it has only been two weeks since it’s launch date. I must continue to advertise and be creative. If I continue to do that, I hope Chi Flo will be sold in stores in 5 years. I’d also love to open a boutique with Chi Flo brand clothing. Let’s hope for the best.

SCBD: What are some goals you want to achieve with Chi Flo this year?

I’m so excited to continue to create more designs. The more I sell the Grim Street line, the more profit I can make, and the quicker I can come up with more shirts. I just really want people to love the shirts and recognize that I am an independent business owner and need to sell, sell, sell! I can’t wait to create hoodies for fall and cover-ups for summer. Stay tuned!

SCBD:  What’s one quote that motivates you everyday?

“Don’t wish it was easier, wish you were better”

SCBD: Last, what’s one thing you’d like all the SCBD readers to know about Chi Flo?

CA: I’d like all the SCBD readers to know that anyone can rock Chi Flo and find the balance in their life. Chi Flo represents just that! Wear your heart on your sleeve and also wear art on your shirts. Self expression from deep within is SUPER important and don’t be afraid to be edgy. Stock is limited but there will be more as long as the sales go up! Chi Flo is a small business and needs YOU guys to help promote it! By people wearing Chi Flo, it sort of creates a little Chi Flo army. A bunch of people making a statement in favor of art, independent business, and staying Chi.

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I loved both of my purchases from Chi Flo, the Women’s Street Pigeon Crop Tee and neon pink beanie (pictured above) and I’m sure you will too!

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In honor of the launch of Chi Flo, Christina is offering Small Chick Big Deals readers an exclusive deal:

 Type SCBD into the code box at checkout to get 10% off entire purchase at Chi Flo from Monday the 18th-Wednesday the 20th! 🙂

Also be sure to sign up for the Chi Flo mailing list, here.

Happy Shopping and supporting Chi Flo! 😀

Sara SCBD Logo Edited

#SCBDExclusive: Potbelly to Open in Paramus this Tuesday!

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If you’ve been an avid SCBD reader from the beginning you know one of my favorite places to grab lunch while I interned at The Rachael Ray Show was Potbelly Sandwich Shop. It was an easy walk from the former studio in Midtown East, affordable, and delicious and I’m not normally a big sandwich person. Check out my original post featuring Potbelly, here.

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I loved eating Potbelly so much that I wanted them to open up in New Jersey. Now over a year later, they are opening their second New Jersey location (the first is in Jersey City) at Bergen Town Center in Paramus, NJ. The Potbelly official grand opening is this Tuesday, February 19th at 11am.

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In honor of the opening they are having an Oven Warming Party (which I found out via Twitter) tomorrow from 11am-1:30pm. The first 260 people to sign up (admits you and one guest) can enjoy a Potbelly Originals sandwich, a bag of chips, and a fountain drink, all for a $5 cash donation per person that will be going to Family to Family to raise funds for their projects.  Be sure to RSVP, here, tonight! I’m planning on attending, so maybe I’ll see you there?!

The MenuPhoto Credit: DNAinfo.com

The Menu
Photo Credit: DNAinfo.com

If you can’t make it out tomorrow, make sure you stop by for their official grand opening Tuesday or anytime the rest of the week.  I highly recommend the Roast Beef sandwich which is my personal favorite, I’ve even ordered it “Bigs” (30% more meat) because it’s that delicious!

Here’s to a successful grand opening and giving Potbelly a warm welcome to Bergen County!

Happy Eating! 😀

Sara SCBD Logo Edited

#DealAlert & #SCBDExclusive for the Big Brew Beer Fest on this Saturday!

Unsure what to get the beer lover in your life for Valentine’s Day?

Well I’ve got you covered! This Saturday, February 16th is the The Big Brew Beer Festival at the Morristown Armory.

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 Some of the best craft breweries from the area, around the nation and the world will be showcasing over 100 unique tastings. It will be the perfect opportunity for beer aficionados and beer lovers to speak to brewery representatives and discover new beers.

“I fell in love with craft beer when I went to an event four years ago” says Allison Kohler, President of JMK Events, which has created shows for antiques for 40 years. “Much like antiques, craft beer is an art form and we’re thrilled to pay homage to it with The Big Brew Beer Festival.”

One action-packed session will last from 4:30 to 8:30 pm, with featured entertainment from legendary Jersey band The Nerds. Event games include a Doubles Beer Pong Tournament with a $500 prize (free entry with ticket). The Morris Area Society of Homebrewers will be providing brewing demonstrations, make home brewing your new hobby!

Some of the featured VIP beers will include: Boulder Killer Penguin-Barleywine, Dominion Millennium (2 Year Old) Barleywine, Flying Dog Green Tea Imperial Stout, Stone Vertical Epic 12/12/12 Belgian Abbey Spiced Ale, Wyerbacher Riserva American Wild Ale, 21st Amendment Marooned on Hog Island American Stout, Duvel Tripel Hop, Ommegang Art Of Darkness.

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Advance ticket prices are: $80 VIP ticket, $50 General Admission, $10 Designated Driver
At-door prices are: $90 VIP ticket, $60 General Admission, $15 Designated Driver.Use my exclusive SCBD discount code SCBDBBF for $10 off General Admission & SCBDBBFVIP for $15 off the VIP tickets!

All tickets include unlimited tastings and a souvenir tasting glass.

There are a limited number of tickets available. Discounted advance tickets are available online, here

For VIP ticket holders, rare beers, complimentary hors d’oueuvres provided by Morris Tap & Grill, Morris Tap and Grill VIP lounge access (presented by Morris Tap and Grill of Randolph, NJ) and an extended hour of tasting will be made available.

Follow @BigBrewBeerFest on Twitter or on Facebook for updates, special promotions and giveaways. Join the conversation #BigBrewBeerFest.

I know I’ll be in attendance and am really looking forward to it!

See ya there! 😀 Cheers!

Sara SCBD Logo Edited