Mother's Day Gift Guide

With May 11th fast approaching, are you still unsure of what to get Mom for Mother's Day?  It's always been a challenge when my sister and I have to shop for this occasion, because our Mom likes many things therefore making it difficult for us to choose something extra special. She does enjoy gifts she can eat, so if your Mom is just like ours, and if you're stumped as what to get her, I've selected a few of my favorite finds and personal picks in this Mother's Day Gift Guide.

Pink Marc de Champagne Truffles
$25.00 at Dean & Deluca (online)

Photo: Dean & Deluca

Photo: Dean & Deluca

Does your Mom love chocolate? I discovered these handmade truffles while perusing the Dean & Deluca website earlier this week and thought that it would be great gift to include a basket of goodies! The brand, Charbonnel & Walker, has been around since 1875, and they make the finest chocolate truffles in Britain.  The description from the Dean & Deluca website says, "Each pink chocolate truffle has a milk chocolate, butter and Marc de Champagne centre, and is finished with a light dusting of icing sugar." How enticing! No wonder this is the brand's best-selling product.  GIft these to Mom with a bottle of fine Champagne (like the Billecart-Salmon Brut Reserve, from 67 Wines) and she'll be pleased! (Note: These truffles required 2nd-day shipping to ensure freshness).

Get them here: http://www.deandeluca.com/candy-and-confections/chocolates/chocolate-truffles/pink-marc-de-champagne-truffles.aspx

 

Floral Tea SetPalais des Thes,
$29.00

Photo from my Flickr

Photo from my Flickr

I'm glad Palais des Thes created the "Indulgence Tea Sets" for the spring like the Les Floraux, the Floral Tea Set (pictured above). There are two other sets, Les Fruités (the Fruity Teas), and Les Gourmands (the Sweet Teas), and each include five all-natural flavored teas to "indulge the senses." If you're unsure of what kind of teas your mother likes, then any of these sets makes a perfect introduction to tea tasting.  

The Floral Tea set contains five green teas of which the Grand Jasmine tea is favorite, followed by the Fleur de Geisha:

Thé des Moines, the unique blend of tea, plants and flowers, inspired by a Tibetan recipe. 
Fleur de Geisha, a refined combination of Japanese green tea flavoured with cherry blossom. 
Grand Jasmin Chun Feng, one of the best jasmine green teas with high proportion of tips.
Thé des Sables, green tea blend of Damas rose, mango, yellow peach and citrus fruits.
Thé des Sources, the blend of fine green Chinese tea, bergamot and mint leaves : delicious!

Another tea blend I like is the Pure Indulgence Lavender Oolong Tea ($19.50). This high-quality Oolong tea from China is paired with fresh lavender, and together they create an uplifting and ultra fragrant drink. It's a good tea that I personally like to drink in the evenings to relax. 

Photo: Palais des Thes

Photo: Palais des Thes

Photo: Cognac One

Photo: Cognac One

Why not get some wine for Mom too?  Is she a budding wine connoisseur? Well, this rosé wine from Xavier Flouret has been a long-lasting favorite of mine for the past couple years, and it's a fine choice for Mom. Xavier Flouret continues to produce various wines of the finest quality that are also affordable.  The Nationale 7 consists of the grape varieties Grenache, Cinsault, Mourvedre, Carignan, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Tibouren, and Rolle. It's light, refreshing, and pairs well with Provençale cuisine and roast chicken. I think the best rosé wines come from Provence, though there are other regions in France that produce excellent ones as well. 

Grab one, two, or a case of this and enjoy it with Mom (and Dad) on a boat,  a rooftop restaurant, or out on the patio. She'll appreciate the grand gesture!

Purchase herehttp://www.millesima-usa.com/xavier-flouret-domaine-de-rimauresq-nationale-7-2013.html

I hope this guide helps you find a nice present for dear Mom.  Time to start shopping...quickly! 

Wishing you and your mothers an early "Happy Mother's Day!" 

Teas to Tempt the Heart

Just for Valentine’s Day, my favorite premium French tea purveyor, Palais des Thés, has created a special gift to share with you and your loved ones. So I popped into the SoHo flagship store on Prince Street over the weekend to check out gift set and the festive display with some friends and had them taste the new teas. 

Palais des Thés for Valentine's Day

The “LOVERS - tea miniature set” (Thé des Amants) is an exclusive limited edition blend created by Palais des Thés that comes with miniature tins of black, green and rooibos tea, and a box of pink cane sugar hearts. Each tea has romantic hints of almond, apple, cinnamon, and vanilla, and warm notes of ginger.

Although I enjoyed all of the teas in this set, I love, love, love the Thé des Amants black tea.The strong taste of the black tea is beautifully complemented by notes of apple, almond, and cinnamon, the latter of which adds just the perfect amount of spice.  I’ve been having a great time quenching my thirst with these enchanting teas since they've been released late January. They’re optimal to drink throughout the day and they’ll seduce your taste buds too.  I suggest starting with the black for a caffeine boost in the mornings (or when you’re losing energy in the early afternoon), go with green for moderate energy for the rest of the day, and end with rooibos in the evening since it contains zero caffeine to disrupt your slumber.

With this winter’s snowy weather and chilling temperatures, these playful teas will definitely warm you up especially during the cold nights when you feel like staying in hanging out with your loved one over Netflix and Seamless or cuddling with your adorable pet.  

Palais des Thés for Valentine's Day

If you’re a tea lover like moi and want to try something new, I recommend you visit PalaisdesThés and pick up this limited edition set before Valentine’s Day for all the people you love who love tea. Very good tea.  You’ll enjoy this sensual and delicious surprise that brings new meaning to "love potion."

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"LOVERS - tea miniature set" (Thé des Amants), $27

Available now online at Palais des Thes, and in-stores:

Online at 
http://us.palaisdesthes.com/en_us/

SoHo: 156 Prince Street
(between West Broadway & Thompson Sts)
Mon-Sat. 10am-8pm, Sun. 10am-7pm
 (646) 513 4369

Upper West Side - Lincoln Square 
194 Columbus Avenue
(between 68th & 69th Sts).
Mon-Sat. 10am-8pm, Sun. 11am-7pm
(646) 664 1902