Getting Ready To Entertain
By Jenn | Hazel & Hen
Paid for in partnership and featuring members of the Leamington Chamber of Commerce
There’s nothing more exciting than celebrating with friends and family for the holidays. For some of us, entertaining can feel a little overwhelming. I find the most stressful part is food preparation. I’m always nervous that I won’t have everything done on time. Today I’m taking you to my favourite stores that make my holiday entertaining easier.
My first stop is Bradt’s Butcher Block! One of my favourite things to put together when entertaining for the holidays is a charcuterie board. To prepare for my charcuterie board, Bradt’s has many quality ingredients such as Lakeside pickles, goat cheese, pretzels, artichokes. I also love going to Bradt’s to pick up things to barbeque or for those cold winter days when I want to put together a homemade stew.
My second stop was the Leamington Superstore to support local – searching for Bubi’s Awesome Eats Sauce and peppers and tomatoes from Mucci Farms. I also enjoy their beautiful holiday and home decor. I love how their beautiful home section can take regular everyday items to the next level.
I also needed some holiday desserts and since I am not a big baker I stopped in at Christine‘s Bake Shop. The minute I opened the door to the shop I was greeted by the amazing aroma of fresh gingerbread cookies! Christine has a fabulous selection of different cookies, tarts and other desserts to put out this holiday….nobody has to know that you didn’t make them yourself.
After a couple of stores we were starving and we stopped at Jose’s Bar & Grill for lunch. Our waitress made my daughter a virgin Miami Vice, and that’s half strawberry daiquiri and half piña colada with no alcohol and she was so excited to have such a grown-up-looking drink. The food tasted amazing and their welcoming staff went above and beyond to make sure our lunch was extra special.
Pelee Island Winery has a beautiful collection of wine in their gorgeous storefront. They have wine that will suit your entertaining needs this holiday! Their tiny Lola bottles make perfect stocking stuffers. I was pleasantly surprised by the variety of complementary entertaining appetizers they offer, such as the delicious collection of holiday crunchies.
For me, there’s nothing more nerve-wracking than not having enough food when entertaining. M&M Meats have freezers full of so many great things that you can keep to bring out last-minute if you the need. Their large variety of food items and delicious desserts makes for easy entertaining!
My favourite place to stop to pick up dinner for entertaining is Carmen’s Catering! Carmen also caters large events and catered my sister‘s wedding! It’s easy to see how she turned a business out of her basement 30 years ago into an amazing catering business and is still going strong three decades later! It is a great place to pick up food for your next gathering or for a busy working family to pick up an easy dinner that isn’t fast food. If you haven’t been there yet give her a try this holiday season and let her cook your dinner for you so you have more time to spend with your guests.
When entertaining I always love to have a selection of local craft brews for my guests and Banded Goose Brewing Co. never disappoints! They update their selections regularly, so stop by to see what they can offer your holiday table!
Enhance your holiday celebration with the local flavours the fares of Essex County!