Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic: Summer Style Inspiration from the Best Dressed

Daria Strokous at the Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic. Photos by David X Prutting/BFAnyc.com

Freida Pinto, Andreja Pejic, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Diane Kruger and more of film and fashion’s finest showed us how best dressed is done for summer.

It’s officially June, the month summer begins, and with the unofficial summer kick-off party weekend already behind us (see ya, Memorial Day) and the Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in the rear view, there’s nowhere to go but forward in terms of summer style. Fortunately, the Polo Classic provided all kinds of summer sartorial inspiration by way of gorgeous models and Hollywood stars flaunting their polo field finest — view the summer finery from Maggie Gyllenhaal in super chic all-white, Andreja Pejic in boho-chic epitomized, and Diane Kruger (who manages to be sophisticated in a cut-out jumpsuit) and get a look at the best dressed at the Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic.

Andreja Pejic working boho-chic:
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Orange Is the New Black star Dascha Polanco doing ’80s glam:
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Diane Kruger and Joshua Jackson looking utterly chic and cool (and lovey):
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Hannah Bronfman looking breezy:
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Maggie Gyllenhaal working an all white pantsuit better than we’ve seen in a while — so chic:maggiegyllenhaal_veuveclicquot

Mindy Kaling and Freida Pinto looking like summery perfection:
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Hello, Nacho:
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The Affair star Ruth Wilson looking comfortable and cool:ruthwilson_veuveclicquot veuveclicquot

 

11 Sweet Mother’s Day Gifts to Lavish on Mom

Just a few days until it’s time to celebrate mom — she’s done a lot for you (you know, birth, raising you, things like that,) so doting on her — whether she loves luxurious skincare or prefers to carry an ultra chic bag — is 100% required. These are the Mother’s Day gifts mom will adore.

If she’s into skincare, pick up an indulgent rose oil or freesia-infused skincare essence from Chantecaille or SK-II. Nothing’s quite as lovely as a few extra minutes of me-time for mom. For the mother who keeps a perfect home, Hammamas‘s woven towels will decorate the powder room or kitchen sink beautifully. The chic mom will love understated accessories, like a pair of cat eye frames from Linda Farrow, a military-cool bag from Valextra, or mother of pearl drop earrings from Ippolita. Veuve Clicquot‘s rose champagne fits perfectly into Mother’s Day brunch — the accompanying megaphone ice bucket lets her know you’re her biggest fan. For a daily reminder that you love her, toss one of Byredo‘s hand cream duos in her handbag, and keep one for yourself (like friendship bracelets, but Byredo). Nars‘s iconic lipstick in Dolce Vita is universally flattering. And for the mom who supports social causes, a thoughtful tee from Prink Shop supporting awareness of sex trafficking sends the right message.

Clockwise from left: Missoni crochet-knit cardigan; Chantecaille rose de mai face oil; Nars Dolce Vita sheer lipstick; Prink Shop tee; Valextra Lei cross body bag; Veuve Clicquot rose with megaphone ice bucket; Byredo hand cream duo; Ippolita mini lollipop 18 karat gold and mother of pearl earrings; Linda Farrow cat eye sunglasses; SK-II facial treatment essence; Hammamas striped woven cotton towels.

Bastille Day Celebrations with 3 of Our Fave Frenchies

We’ll celebrate anything that gives us a good reason to pop a bottle of champagne, and come Monday, that day’ll be here. July 14 is Bastille Day, the French National day, and if we can’t be in Paris, at least we can spend some QT with some French faves in NYC.

Really the only meal that could suit a day like Bastille Day is a healthy serving of macarons, and Ladurée has the most adorable pique-nique basket of tea sandwiches and French treats to share. Bon appétit, mon chéri.

cremieux
Shopping basically is celebrating, so why not hit up a French store? Cremieux’s New York store is the brand’s only U.S. outpost, stocking exclusive items like hand-knit ties, ultra fine wool suits, and bespoke shirting, tailoring brought to you by a specialty tailor flown in from Europe several times a year. We say oui. (65 Mercer Street, New York.)

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Great for celebrating the occasion and your new French wardrobe? A chilled bottle of Veuve. Points if you’re poolside.

Happy Halloween. Now Eat and Drink Up!

No matter if you are a zombie, a binder full of women, some Marvel superhero, or a sexy what-have-you, there is no excuse not to enjoy eating and partaking in a tipple or eight during this spirit-filled holiday. We have already told you were to party, and Steve Lewis has intel on how he will spend his Halloween; now, here are some special snacks and drinks full of gore(geous) boo(ze).

First up, Richard Sandoval celebrates the dead with an all-night Halloween happy hour at his restaurant Zengo, which includes $8 cocktails, $5 small plates, and on the 31st if you wear a costume, you get a complimentary Witch’s Eye Cocktail. His midtown restaurant Pampano also gets down with the spirits, and from October 26 until November 1, you can try his Day of the Dead specials like the Chicken Tamale, Croquetas de Camote, and raise your own demons with the Flor de Muertos Margarita. Plus, on Halloween, they have $6 margaritas, wine, and mojiotos from 5pm to close. 

There is no time like the present to attend Sleep No More, the eerie, spirit-filled, interactive-play by Punchdrunk. What makes this Sleep No More performance even more enticing is the Carnival des Corbeaux, where they have added a circus bent to the festivities. Plus, starting tonight until the 31st, they have a “Yelloween” after party featuring Veuve Clicquot, an ancient and honorable champagne to go with what one day may be a classic performance. 

Starting Saturday, if you howl like a wolf at Edi & the Wolf, they will reward you with the bright red Wolf’s Blood cocktail, which is made with rye whiskey, Italian vermouth, blood orange liqueur and bitters. You can also enjoy “Tequilaween,” at Barrio 47. Here, feast on blood sausage, cow heart skewers, and sip their special Bloody Punch. DJs spin this Friday, Saturday and on the 31st. On Halloween alone, you can head to Beaumarchais for their epic party celebrating their namesake, author Pierre Beaumarchais, who wrote The Barber of Seville. Hence, they have The Demon Barber of Meatpacking feast featuring Mrs. Lovett’s meat pies and bloody drinks. 

Scared? You should be. If you managed to do all of this you will surly be one of the zombies stumbling to work on November 1, the Day of the Dead. Not that that should stop you.

Summer Spirits to Beat the Heat

It’s summer up here in the Northern Hemisphere, and you’re probably looking for ways to keep cool. The best way, of course, is to sip a nice cold glass of beer, wine, or spirits. Here are a few of my favorites for afternoons under the sun and breezy evenings in shirt sleeves. 

Beer’s as casual as summer itself, and I’m always happy when someone puts an ice-cold bottle of Heineken or Amstel Light in my hand. I also enjoy Samuel Adams Summer Ale, a crisp wheat with a citrus bite, and Samuel Adams Belgian Session, an ale with a quaffability far beyond that of its Flemish cousins. 
 
When it comes to whiskey, the light and flavorful Gentleman Jack ($32) goes down well on sultry nights. The new Whistlepig Straight Rye ($70) boasts a complex spiciness that leaves you feeling cool. The Macallan Fine Oak 10-Year-Old ($41) is the closest there is to a summer Scotch, with a whiff of leather in the bouquet and a hint of caramel in the finish. 
 
Rum loves the sun, and the lively Bacardi Oakheart ($15) gives a great little kick to your Cuba Libra. 10 Cane ($30) is made from fresh sugar cane juice with a touch of extra old rum. Appleton 12-Year-Old Rum ($42) makes me feel close to Jamaica, with a playful bite up front and a banana and vanilla finish. It’s dear, but Ron Abuelo Centuria ($130) is amazing. A wave of buttery oak leaves behind a medley of spice notes. 
 
For tequila, I enjoy Milagro Select Barrel Reserve Silver ($53) with its pleasant grapefruit finish. Herradura Silver ($40) brings out the best in the agave, proof that quality tequila doesn’t have to be aged to drink neat. And Patron XO Dark Cocoa ($25) takes the nighttime chill out of your bones, even if it comes from sitting too close to the air conditioner. 
 
For oenophiles, summer is a time to grab a crisp white, like the Kim Crawford 2011 Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc ($19), a refined wine from New Zealand with cherry flavors. The elegant Robert Mondavi Reserve Fumé Blanc ($40) from California has an aroma of country air and flavors of apple and pear. And I love Veuve Clicquot Rosé ($70), with its tiny bubbles and dry, fruity notes. 
 
Summer doesn’t last long so drink it in while you can. 

A Supreme Stash of Winter Spirits

Who needs central heating when you can blow your bonus on premium spirits that will have you feeling toasty inside and out? Here’s a baker’s dozen that will keep you warm and happy until the first buds of spring appear.

I don’t normally love holiday beers – enough with the cloves already – but Samuel Adams Griffin’s Bow Ale ($7) hits all the right citrus and floral notes. To really get in the spirit, pop a bottle of Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin Vintage 2004 ($75). It’s crisp and balanced with hints of pear and that austere oaky note common to vintage champagnes.

Gentleman Jack Rare Tennessee Whiskey ($32) has complex notes of oak, vanilla, and caramel. It’s a tough southern boy dressed in his Sunday best. Basil Hayden’s Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey ($35) is earthy and warm, with a whisper of orange and a nice kick. Let the ice melt for five minutes and it’s heaven. I love the new Johnnie Walker Double Black Blended Scotch Whisky ($40), from its gorgeous amber color to its woody aroma to its vanilla and honey notes. A peppermint nip mellows its peaty undertones.

Winter’s a wonderful time for dark rum, and Bacardi Reserva Limitada ($110) is one of the best, with a smoky bouquet, vanilla and coconut flavors, and subtle sugars that tickle the tip of the tongue. The new Brugal 1888 ($50) is a delightfully smooth rum, with a flawless balance of oaky and sweet. The even newer DonQ Gran Añejo ($60) is a fun rum, sharp and spicy at first, then mellow and sweet.

Vodka knows no season, but Stoli Chocolat Razberi ($24) seems perfect for a snowy night. It smells like Cream Savers and tastes like a fancy box of chocolates. The interplay between flavors makes it quite sexy – put a glass on your nightstand. I wasn’t sure I’d like Patrón XO Cafe ($25), but I do, a lot. Its aroma alone perks you up, and the agave flavor of the tequila melds surprisingly well with the coffee. I’d want this in my rucksack during a cold night in the Sierra Madres.  

Moving up the sweet scale, the new Kahlúa Cinnamon Spice ($20) is everything it should be. The cinnamon knows its boundaries, and the sweet coffee flavor massages the palate. Baileys Irish Cream ($21) has always had a light touch. You can taste the whiskey, but the creaminess makes it the smoothest dram you’ll ever sip. Finally, when you’re really ready to indulge, open a bottle of Godiva Original Chocolate Liqueur ($30). It has a velvety texture and it’s as chocolatey as you’d ever want it to be, yet balanced enough to not be cloying. It’s delicious chilled, mixed in a cocktail, or even poured over ice cream. Feeling cozy yet?

Daytime Glamour Returns for the Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in LA

Hollywood’s top starlets and fashion notables fêted Los Angeles style at yesterday’s Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic. The 1920’s-themed event at Will Rogers State Historic Park was met with nonstop sunshine, bottomless bubbly, and a host of retro-dressed patrons, like co-host Rachel Zoe and her cherubic baby boy, Skyler. She was joined by fellow co-hosts Rodger Berman (her husband), polo star Nacho Figueras, Delfina Blaquier, and Veuve Clicquot U.S. president Vanessa Kay, along with stars like Camilla Belle, Zoe Saldana, Jeremy Piven, and Lauren Conrad. Take a peek at our snaps from the event.

image There were many adorably dressed kids there, but Zoe’s son Skyler earned highest marks for his matching hat and knickers combo.

image Camilla Belle in Ralph Lauren.

image Lauren Conrad in a look from her new line, Paper Crown.

image Jamie King was personally sent this gorgeous SS12 frock from Jason Wu.

image Co-host Nachos Figueras received the MVP award from Rachel Zoe after his team, Black Watch, defeated team Veuve Clicquot by a score of 7-5.

A Little of the Bubbly for Me & a Little of the Bubbly for You

I’m sampling sparkling wines today – by which I mean there is champagne in my mouth right now – and I’m loving every minute of it. Perhaps it’s not the manliest of drinks, but I’ve always enjoyed a good glass of bubbly, even though it makes me swoon. Heck, I even enjoy bad bubbly, and I don’t think it gets much worse than Sovetskoye Shampanskoye, the post-Soviet plonk with the plastic cork that appears at every party east of Austria. But how can a drink be bad when every time I’ve had it I’ve had a good time? Anyway, tomorrow is New Year’s Eve, which is probably the biggest night of the year for champagne sparkling wine consumption, so it makes sense to rap about a few of our favorite bottles. Naturally, there are the über-expensive ones, like Dom Pérignon and Cristal. I’ve had Dom before, and it’s exquisite, and I’ll assume Cristal is as well. But with three-figure price tags, I won’t be brushing my teeth with them anytime soon. Better, then, to sample bubbly I can afford, like Moët & Chandon Imperial ($40), which I’m drinking out of a paper cup at the moment. Fancy wine writers might have a better description, but I call it yummers, with a mild sweetness, healthy bite, and delightfully smooth aftertaste. It’s “real” champagne, from Epernay, France, and it’s definitely good enough to impress friends and family. If someone looks down at you for bringing Moët, they’re not worth drinking with anyway. Plus, you get to say, “You’re drinking Moët and we got the champagne,” à la “Hold it Now, Hit It” by the Beastie Boys. A fine bottle.

Then, for the price conscious, there’s Barefoot Bubbly Brut Cuvée from California, which is a tremendous value at just $10 a bottle. A bit rounder and sweeter than the Moët, it nonetheless has a balanced taste, with delicate fruit notes, a pleasing smell bouquet, and notes of apple, pear, and grapefruit. This is a B+ booze if price isn’t factored in, bumping up to a solid A if it is.

I’m not drinking it right now, but I’ve always been a fan of Veuve Clicquot, which tastes rich, fun, and nuanced. Plus, you can show off your knowledge of French by informing your ever-loving that “veuve” means “widow.” This is the bottle I buy for people when the occasion calls for a bottle of champagne. At between $40 and $50 depending on the liquor store, it’s a good value, because if you don’t like Veuve, you don’t like champagne.

But you don’t need proper champagne, or even the American version, to have a celebration. Over the past couple of years, I’ve become fond of Prosecco, which is made in Italy, and the sweeter version, Muscato. They’re both cheaper than the French stuff, and, while not quite as refined, there’s the novelty value of being “Italian Champagne,” which is to say, less snobby and more fun.

One more thing before the bubbles penetrate my brain and I stop making sense: sure, New Year’s Eve is great for popping bottles, but champagne (I’m just going to use that word for all sparkling wines, sue me) has the magical power of making any event a special occasion. I just walked around the office with two bottles and a stack of cups. I stopped by everybody’s desk, said “I’m not asking,” and started pouring. I heard no complaints. Happy New Year.

Clink: Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Le Fridge

Who says you have to wait until New Year’s Eve? Crack open the bubbly early and pour yourself a glass of Veuve Clicquot. Every year Veuve commissions a designer to create a new presentation case, and this charming 2010 design by French designer Denis Boudard manages to incorporate Veuve’s trademark yellow with a simple 1950s fridge form. The design was developed to keep Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label cold for up to two hours, giving one the freedom to consume champagne anytime, anywhere.

Get clinking here.