Fancy Your Football Fare


After this weekend's epic Memphis Tigers victory over Ole Miss, I can't help but feel the spirit of football season...Even on a Monday morning! Enjoy my latest Health + Fitness Magazine article on guilt-free tailgate fare. With these recipes in mind, the weekend will arrive in no time. Screen Shot 2015-10-19 at 10.37.41 AMScreen Shot 2015-10-19 at 10.37.26 AM


Tennessee Whiskey Peach Smash


Happy Sunday! Social media most likely informed you of an exciting Caramelized feature on Camille Styles. I am so grateful of the opportunity to share my Memphis home and entertaining style on such a well-versed, well-done publication. I, of course, could not have pulled it off without Ashleigh Peak's photography, Brit McDaniel's handmade ceramics, Ashley York Binkley's interior design, and Jill Forrester's ingredients, among many others' assistance. Cara-47

Click here for my latest cocktail featured on the Camille Styles spread. The fresh peach and dark yet beautifully palatable Tennessee liquor complement a weekend brunch and a late summer barbecue. An outdoor meal al fresco is calling your name, so please whip this up, snap a picture, and share your #caramelizedblog tags on social media!


Pardon the Pamplemousse

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Pardon the frequency, but my affinity for pink citrus has expanded beyond my daily Pamplemousse Le Croix ritual at the office. I perused through my iPhone photo gallery the other evening, only to notice that grapefruit has appeared in more than a few snapshots from the past week.

Porcellino's bruléed grapefruit (below) is my favorite weekend bite--imagine a cold grapefruit half with a thick molasses crust torched to crispy perfection. A healthy créme brulée, if you will? Oh, and I highly recommend the yogurt and granola as a pairing. It's the best taste and presentation of yogurt & granola that Memphis, Tennessee has ever seen.


The paloma at Hog & Hominy (pictured below) temporarily subdued the 110-degree heat index earlier this week. I swooned over the refreshing square ice cubes and center-dunked slice of grapefruit. Utterly smooth and refreshing, the tequila cocktail pushed me to post on social media that every productive Monday should end with a paloma.

My recipe below is a summer Caramelized version of a pamplemousse cocktail. Roll out the bar cart and shake away this upcoming weekend! This pamplemousse fizz is ideal for kicking back on the front patio.

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

 Makes 1 serving

Grapefruit wedge Margarita salt Ice cubes 1/4 cup fresh grapefruit juice 3 tablespoons tequila 1 jalapeño pepper slice 1/2 lime Pamplemousse Le Croix

1. Rub the rim of a glass with a grapefruit wedge; dip in margarita salt to coat.

2. Fill glass with ice cubes. Fill a cocktail shaker half full with ice. Add grapefruit juice, tequila, lime juice, and 1 jalapeño pepper slice. Cover with lid, and shake vigorously until thoroughly chilled.

3. Strain into prepared glass. Top with Le Croix. Garnish, if desired.

Inspired by Southern Living

The Grapefruit French Gimlet

Spring has sprung. And so has the weekend. Continuing my sip-and-stroke watercolor cocktail series with my friend and fellow creative Thuyvi Vo, we've crafted our April drink of choice: the french gimlet. frenchgimlet

This dainty drink is the ultimate compliment to a new white dress or Spring gathering with girlfriends. Only three ingredients are required: dry gin, St. Germaine, and grapefruit juice. The classic gimlet uses lime juice, but the blush hue is unbeatable, in my opinion!

And isn't the watercolor gorgeous? We decided to stir up some cocktail recipes beyond the point-and-shoot perspective. Thuyvi’s work introduces a fresh, curated approach to some of our essential seasonal beverages. What do you think? Cheers.


Makes 1 serving

1 ounce dry gin 1 ounce St. Germaine 1/4 cup freshly squeeze grapefruit juice

1. Add all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice.

2. Serve up.

The Mojito

I was first introduced to the precious Thuyvi Vo through Madewell's co-hosted Caramelized holiday shopping night. She's the store director by day and the watercolor artist extraordinaire behind Dear Sir Paper Co. by night. I'm so drawn to Thuyvi's collection of prints, calendars and greeting cards, primarily because of her minimalist style and attention to detail. A "you're grate" card with painted cheese grater image is my favorite Dear Sir keepsake thus far. I believe it'll remain a greeting card to myself. After a coffee date at Cafe Keough, we conspired to stir up some cocktail recipes beyond the point-and-shoot perspective. Thuyvi's hand lettering and painted ingredient array introduce a fresh, curated approach to some of our essential seasonal beverages. What do you think?


The first? A mojito. Coincidentally, Thuyvi and I are boarding varying cruise ships this upcoming Saturday for quick trips to paradise. Despite chilling temps, I can already feel the exposed Caribbean spirit! So whether you'll sip yours beach-side on Spring break or fire-side at home, jot down these ingredients and mix away.

Oh, and if you're interested in a printed version of Thuyvi's cocktail cards (I'm envisioning bar cart art or kitchen art series!), comment on this post or send me a note! We'd love to share these with you in-person.


Makes 1 cocktail

1/2 ounce mint syrup (see recipe below) 2 ounces white rum 1 ounce fresh lime juice, plus spent lime half Crushed ice 2 ounces chilled soda water 1 bunch fresh spearmint, for garnish

1. Place mint syrup in a chilled pint glass. Add the rum, lime juice, and spent lime half.

2. Fill glass with crushed ice and finish with the soda water and spearmint. Serve with a straw.

Mint syrup:

12 ounces water 12 ounces sugar 5 large fresh mint sprigs

1. Gently heat the sugar and water while stirring to dissolve the sugar, and promptly remove from the heat once all the sugar is dissolved. Let the simple syrup cool to room temperature.

2. Blend the mint leaves and simple syrup in a blender for 1 minute. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer or cheesecloth, pour into a bottle, and refrigerate; it will keep for about 1 month. You'll have enough syrup for 12 drinks.

adapted from food52

Holiday Pamplemousse Punch


IMG_2124 Merry Christmas Eve, y'all! Since I do not celebrate the holiday at home, I was thrilled to help plan Monday night's company holiday party at doug carpenter & associates. To kick off the evening, we enjoyed a festive holiday punch (because what's a party without punch) named after our favorite flavor of Le Croix: Pamplemousse. The refreshing gin and grapefruit combo is quite heavenly, and the backdrop of our modern Christmas tree wall elevated the experience even more so. I highly recommend this drink -- adapt it for two, or serve to your entire New Years Eve guest list. Cheers!


 Makes 12 servings

16 ounces club soda, divided in half 16 sugar cubes (or 1/3 cup sugar) 16 ounces Tanqueray gin 8 ounces grapefruit juice 8 dashes Angostura bitters 2 lemons 1 grapefruit, sliced

1. In a large punch bowl or pitcher, muddle sugar and 8 ounces of club soda until sugar is dissolved. Add gin, grapefruit juice, and juice of 2 lemons. Add 6-8 slices of grapefruit.

2. Fill pitcher generously with ice. Top off with remaining ounces of club soda.

3. Serve over ice with a grapefruit slice.

These fresh and fabulous ingredients were made possible by The Fresh Market. Thank you for being supportive of my sponsors!