suite soirees: a valentine’s day picnic complete with an epic heartcuterie board

Resources linked below

In quarantine, home really is where the heart is. Spending so much time indoors this year and still wanting to be safe during the pandemic, I decided to move things outside and set up a heart-themed picnic for my SuiteHearts (aka my pre-fiancé, Brian and bestie, Dan).

I first set the scene with a plush faux-fur rug and scattered a few blush and cream pillows around the center table so we could all sit comfortably. Then I created a focal point on the hedge with fabric flowers and a wooden “love” cut out in front of two chairs and a small table as a conversation space.

The drinks, or as I like to call them, “Suite Sips”, were perched on their own marble table for a drink station. I knew I had to have some variety for all of our different tastes so there were two rosé wines, beer for Brian, canned vodka spritz cocktails, and a fun pre-mixed strawberry margarita that fit in perfectly with the pink theme. Of course I turned to Dan and cheekily asked, “Will you accept this rosé?”

For nibbles, I always love to create pretty cheeseboards so I took the Valentine’s Day theme and created a “Heartcuterie” board complete with cheese, crackers, fruit, candies, and deli meats that I wrapped to look like roses. What better way to ask, “Will you brie mine?”

I fell in love with the idea of heart-shaped caprese salad (even though it was a bit cheesy) and was so happy with the way it turned out that I loved it from my head, all the way to-ma-toes. It was super easy to make and really delicious to eat.

For something suite, I hand dipped cherries in white chocolate and rolled them in black sprinkles for an updated twist on the classic chocolate-dipped strawberry. There was also heart-shaped watermelon and crispy vanilla meringue perched on marble pedestals.

I love the way the whole picnic turned out and it was a nice change to celebrate love outdoors. Tell me, do you beleaf in love?

Resources

Love Sign  I  Felt Hearts  I  Glitter Hearts
Faux Fur Rug  I  Pillows  I  Marble Table
Marble Cheeseboard  I  Marble Pedestals  I  Two-Tier Tray
Crackers  I  Heart-Shaped Crackers
Bubblegum Yogurt Pretzels  I  Cosmo Popcorn  I  Meringue
Candy Lips  I  Cosmo Bears  I  Cinnamon Hearts
Rose Wine  I  Rose Wine  I  Strawberry Margarita  I  Beer  I  Canned Cocktail

What snack would you fall for first on this snack board?  Let us know in the comments below.


the one place we always stop when visiting beaver, ut

Stick around for a special 15% off promo code at the end of this article.

This is a one stop light town.  There’s one supermarket, one bar, and one coffee shop.  There’s also only one place we HAVE to stop every time we visit: The Creamery, a huge, glorious church of cheese and dairy.

Opened in 2018 and easily visible from the 15 freeway, the building is new to this old town and looks like Joanna Gaines could’ve designed it with its board and batten black roof, wood shiplap siding, and cute cow logo painted on what could be mistaken for a silo.  It’s a hot spot for both locals looking for a cool treat on a sweltering day or people passing through town wanting a family-friendly place to stretch their legs and grab a bite to eat.

Walking through the double glass doors, you’re greeted with a large dilemma: do you go right towards the gift shop and casual restaurant or do you go left and load up on local Utah-made cheese and ice cream?  We opted to first shop all the quaint country-esque offerings like cheeseboards, blankets, décor, and mugs before heading over to drool in front of the refrigerated cheese case and local fare like crackers, jellies, and sweets.

While Brian went one way and grabbed a cute throw embroidered with his last initial, I went the other way and came back with a marble and wood cheeseboard also emblazoned with a matching E.  And when we saw what the other picked out, we smiled and kissed because we’re both that cheesy.  (OMG, I didn’t even mean for that to be a pun while shopping in a cheese store.)

With our personalized blanket and cheeseboard, we knew exactly what we wanted to do with them: an ATV ride to our favorite mountain meadow for a sunset picnic.

In front of the cheese case, I had the hardest time narrowing down which cheeses to get because they all looked so good (and we ended up with a few more than our cheeseboard could handle).  And I love the fact that all of the dairy products sold at The Creamery are made from milk sourced from dairy farms within a 25-mile radius of small town Beaver, Utah.  That truly lives up to their clever tagline of “Farm, meet table”.

We selected Fair Meadows cream cheese, Troyer black wax extra sharp cheddar, Gossner smoked swiss, Villa Frizzoni asiago, and jalapeno cheese curds.  If you’ve never tried cheese curds, stop what you’re doing and order some right now.  Then, thank us later.


Suite Tip: Cheese curds are a younger, spryer cheddar. They are what cheddar is before being formed into blocks and aged. Cheddar cheese is typically aged from 60 days to 4 years before being sold, whereas cheese curds are eaten straight away.

To round out our romantic sunset cheeseboard, I grabbed some Rustic Bakery rosemary and olive oil flatbread crackers and apricot, pistachio, and brandy artisan crisps for something a little sweeter.  I also picked out a peach amaretto jam and Brian found a mild Italian hard salami and a local-made spicy jalapeno and pineapple jelly to go over the cream cheese and crackers.

On our way to check out, I couldn’t resist a Creamery tote and throwing in some handmade Utah caramels for my parents and wood-carved slingshots for my niece and nephew back home.

And our ATV sunset picnic?  Well, let’s just say it was one of the highlights of this trip.  Brian totally made me melt as the sun slowly dipped behind the trees.  (Yep, still that cheesy.)


Get 15% Off: If you’d like to try The Creamery cheese and products yourself, they ship nationwide.  And now through July 30th, our followers can receive 15% off any purchase of $20 or more with promocode: thesuitelifela.


Shop here now.  (Your purchase helps to support local farm families.)

What’s your favorite type of cheese?  Let us know in the comments below.


suite eats: a green snack board for st. patrick’s day

I love a good cheeseboard.  Any time that I have friends over or entertain, I always like to offer a pretty cheese board or charcuterie plate since it’s easy (and delicious) snacking.  I also love any excuse to get creative and color coordinate.  So with St. Patrick’s Day coming up, I wanted to do a twist on my regular spread and do more of a “green day” inspired snack board full of gorgeous green veggies, fruits, guac, candy, and cheese (obvi).

I headed to one of my favorite stores, World Market, to stock up on all the green treats they had from all over the globe.   (Links to products below.)

I started with my go-to cheese board plate (similar here) that my spread quickly outgrew, so I decided to embrace the idea of making my kitchen island the center of attention and laid everything out there.

First, I placed small bowls that would hold the dips around so that they would anchor the snacks and then started layering in the good stuff.  I made sure to use an odd number of bowls to keep things visually appealing.

Then I grouped the veggies together like green peppers, celery, sugar snap peas, cucumber, and green cauliflower.  To the bowls I added green castelvetrano olives and pesto to dip.

Above the veggies, I added in fruits like green apple, pear, grapes, and kiwi.  I added hummus and a garlic & herb spreadable cheese in the middle so you could dip the veggies or fruit in either one.

Then I found these fun, green guacamole flavored tortilla chips and mounded those by the bowl of guac.  Together they were so good!

I layered in a few other crunchy snacks for texture like “Margarita Crunch” popcorn, wasabi peas, and wasabi almonds before finishing off the snack board with some suite treats.

For the dessert end, I added matcha green tea Pocky biscuit sticks, green tea Kit Kats, apple flavored candies, and green tea chocolate covered macadamia nuts.

And no get together is complete without a good wine to offer guests so I partnered with Winc who delivered four bottles straight to my door and tailored to my tastes.  I took a quick quiz online and my delivery included my favorite, a sauvignon blanc, along with a chenin blanc, sparkling chardonnay, and a red blend.  Having hand selected wine delivered definitely made this soirée easy to plan since I didn’t even have to leave the house or scour the wine aisle looking at labels.  And Winc got it right too – we loved every bottle.

If you’d like to try four bottles of wine for $39 plus complimentary shipping, just use my special code here from Winc.  Your friends may be green with envy with how easy it is.

Resources

Winc Wine
Wasabi Almonds  I  Wasabi Peas Popcorn
Pesto  Olives Hummus Spreadable Cheese
Guacamole  I  Chips
Kit Kats  I  Pocky Macadamia Nuts  I  Apple Candy

What snack would you dive into first on this snack board?  Let us know in the comments below.