Tag Archives: hugh acheson

Mother’s Day Book Bundle Giveaway!

Mother’s Day is one of those holidays that I look forward to every year; not just because I’m a mom and my kids love to spoil me, but because it’s incredibly important to honor the women that have made the biggest impact in our lives, our Moms. You know by now I love giving gifts, so here’s my chance to give the ultimate book selection to one of you deserving Moms out there. I am honored to call all of these talented authors my friends; I am a lucky girl!


Here’s what you’ll win: 4 signed books from some of the most amazing tastemakers in the country. And here’s the winner’s tasty selection: my book Picture Perfect Parties Rizzoli NY. You will also win an advance copy of Hugh Acheson’s latest book, The Broad Fork Clarkson Potter (May 12, 2015), Eddie Ross’ yet-to-be-released book, Modern Mix Gibbs Smith (September 1, 2015) and Barbara Westbrook’s newly released book Gracious Rooms Rizzoli NY .This book bundle giveaway is the perfect Mother’s Day gift for you or that special Mom in your life. I hope you win!


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About the Authors:

HUGH ACHESON is the author of the James Beard Award Winning cookbook A NEW TURN IN THE SOUTH: Southern Flavors Reinvented for Your Kitchen and chef/owner of the Athens, Georgia, restaurants Five & Ten and The National, the Atlanta restaurant Empire State South, and the Savannah restaurant The Florence. Hugh’s cookbook titled A New Turn in the South: Southern Flavors Reinvented for Your Kitchen published by Clarkson Potter in 2011 won the award for Best Cookbook in the field of “American Cooking” by the James Beard Foundation in 2012. His second cookbook is Pick a Pickle: 50 Recipes for Pickles, Relishes, and Fermented Snacks. Food & Wine Magazine named him Best New Chef in 2002 and the James Beard Foundation awarded him Best Chef Southeast in 2012. Hugh competed in Bravo’s Top Chef Masters, Season 3 and starred as a judge on Top Chef, Seasons 9, 10, 11, and 12. He lives in Athens with his family.

EDDIE ROSS is the East Coast Editor of Better Homes & Gardens, producing home, decorating, DIY and entertaining stories for print, digital and video. He has been a design, decorating and food editor for House Beautiful, Martha Stewart Living and Food Network. A trained chef from the Culinary Institute of America, Eddie has styled parties and table settings featured in Southern Living,Lonny and InStyle. His design work has been published in Domino,Vanity FairCountry Living and the New York Times. He also appeared in Bravo’s interior design competition series Top Design and entertaining specials for HGTV. His first book Modern Mix:Curating Personal Style with Chic and Accessible Finds will be publishedon September 1, 2015 by Gibbs Smith.

BARBARA WESTBROOK launched Atlanta-based interiors design firm Westbrook Interiors in 1992 after designing under the tutelage of Southern greats Nancy Braithwaite and Gandy-Peace. her proejcts – homes, second homes, showhouses, large-scale renovations, spas, and her persona homes have been widely published in magazines such as Architectural Digest, Traditional Home, House Beautiful, Garden & Gun, Better Homes & Gardens, and Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles. Barbara also publishes a quarterly online mini-magazine, www.workbookbywestbrook.com.

*Note You will be getting Eddie Ross’s book in late July as it releases in Sept, but you will be getting your copy before anyone else.

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The day has finally arrived- POP that cork and Light that sparkler!

2013-09-30_12-11-29 As all of you know, I have been waiting for this day to come. If any of you have written a book, you know that this is a very BIG day. The day that your vision, blood sweat and tears, and all the long hours and work days come to fruition. It’s the moment that your literary baby is released to the world! TODAY, October 1st, 2013, is that day. Just know that all the support from my family and friends, clients and assistants, art directors and editors, offered along the way did not go unnoticed. Thank you.

Picture Perfect Parties

A special thank you to my darling husband Frank, my chief advisor, cheerleader and hand holder through out this process. He is simply the best. A huge thank you to my kids for telling me along the way that I could do this. To my photographer Deborah Whitlaw Llewellyn … thank you. Deborah is brilliant and humble, the best combination. None of this would have been possible without my sweet and smart editor Chris at Rizzoli, their fantastic PR and Sales team and of course the leader of the whole circus… Janice Shay. She’s the best in the business and of course I can’t forget my right hand man Justin. Thank you. 76371df987e9fe269f800c24c7335b37 It’s been a labor of love. This is the part where I tell you to buy my book here. In the book I offer menus with detailed party planning notes and recipes for special holidays and gatherings. It is chock full of all of my secrets from styling for over 20+ years. Read more about the book here. Can’t wait to see you reap the rewards of your newfound expert party planning skills. Please let me know how it goes! I want to see your pics. Also, I would love for you to tweet me and send me messages… I want to hear from you! Your feedback and thoughts mean so much. POP that cork and come on everybody “Let’s Party”! xx

Here’s a little Champagne cocktail recipe from the book to make and toast along with me, cheers!

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*Special thanks to Hugh Acheson for writing a kick ass foreword and Gwyneth Paltrow for her ever so sweet support. She’s an amazing lady.

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Cookbook 4: A New Turn in the South

By now you all know I live in the south, I’m a transplant like the author of A New Turn in the South, Hugh Acheson. I had the pleasure of styling a feature for him in Better Homes and Gardens Magazine last year in the September Stylemaker issue. Hugh’s from Canada but has adopted the southern lifestyle as his own. In his first cookbook he shows you how he embraces and enhances southern style food. I have to mention that Rinne Allen did all the photography, I have known the talented Rinne for many years, in fact she shot my first entertaining cookbook prototype many many years ago, and we still hope to shoot that book someday. I digress. This book is wonderful, check it out, it’s become one of my go tos and one of the mainstays of my collection.

Hugh owns 3 of my favorite restaurants, Empire State South, here in Atlanta, and 5&10 and The National in Athens, Georgia. He is also a regular {my favorite} uni-browed Judge on Top Chef, check out his blog here. You’ll love this stuffed date recipe. This snackie takes the richness of the dates and counters it with the sharpness of Parmigiano-Reggiano and the crunch of celery. It’s a great match as the sweetness finds a nice savory foil to dance with.

Medjool Dates Stuffed With Parmigiano-Reggiano and Celery

Hands on: 20 minutes Total time: 20 minutes

Serves 4


  • 8 medjool dates, slit lengthwise and pitted
  • 1 stalk celery, peeled and cut on the bias 1/4-inch thick and 1-inch long
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 2-ounce piece of Parmigiano-Reggiano, finely grated
  • 1 teaspoon good balsamic vinegar


  • In a small bowl, combine the celery, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, lemon juice, parsley and salt. Toss well and add the Parmigiano-Reggiano.
  • Grab about 1 1/2 tablespoon of the stuffing between your thumb and forefinger and place a date in your other hand, with the open area facing out. Place the stuffing in the date and gently close your hand around the date to secure the filling.

    To serve: Place the stuffed dates on a small platter and drizzle with a touch of balsamic vinegar and the remaining olive oil.

    Buy this book here

    Photos by Rinne Allen

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  • “Empire State Shoot” with Top Chef Hugh Acheson

    I was introduced to Hugh Acheson, a couple years ago by a dear friend. I have always enjoyed dining at his various establishments, loved watching him on Top Chef on Bravo, so producing a story with him seemed a natural fit. One afternoon I was chatting with Hugh at Empire State South and mentioned he might make a great entertaining story. He was like “sure, we throw parties all the time”… So I pitched the story of one of his great parties to my editor, well of course they jumped on it.

    Hugh is a great guy, and a great chef. He’s warm and sweet and a stellar host {not at all like the hard ass judge you see on Top Chef}. Sorry Hugh to blow your cover, but to know the guy is to love him, am I right? His family is delightful, so working with them on this shoot was a dream { plus the food wasn’t bad either}.The location was in Athens ,GA, which is the most charming town. It has the just the right amount of artiness and southern hospitality to make it perfect. This was a shoot where we all felt like we were at a party and not actually working to capture the party.

  • Thanks to Hugh and his beautiful family for making us feel so welcome.
  • Thanks to Reed Davis for capturing the essence of how the Acheson Family throw a gathering. His photography is always so beautiful.
  • Thanks to Better Homes and Gardens for making this story so gorgeous on your pages.

    I hope you all pick up a copy of the Style Maker issue (September 2012) of Better Homes and Gardens.

    *Watch me on The Today Show September 6th, in the 9:00 a.m. hour, I will be showing you some of Hugh’s cool party ideas, you won’t want to miss it. I hope you try this fun party and let me know if you do, I want to here all about it.

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