{You Pick Six} An Interview with Drink Blogger: Claudiane Philippe

Serendipity is a favorite word and a most welcomed occurrence. It’s also how I learned about Claudiane Philippe.

While scrolling through posts in the Brandeis Alumni of Color Network Facebook Page, I saw a Boston Globe article about her.  She is not only a fellow Brandeis University graduate, but she is a much sought after blogger with 11,500 followers on Instagram. Well, “Cheers” to you Claudiane!

Because her nails always look beautiful and are front and center in photos of featured cocktails, her blog is called Nail The Cocktail. How cool is that?!

If you’re interested in finding the best cocktails in the Boston area and beyond, check out her blog where she goes into more detail about the drinks that she’s posted on Instagram.

So let’s stir things up and learn a bit more about Claudiane and resume this ongoing series with the 20th interview of You Pick Six.

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What is a favorite dessert?
My favorite dessert of all time is tiramisu. I’m not a great baker and I don’t attempt to bake often, however I found a “fool proof” recipe for tiramisu online once and it came out great! Any time I see it on the menu somewhere, I order it without second guessing.

What is some of the best advice you’ve ever received?
Some of the best advice I have ever received was the phrase: if you’re not willing to do something for free at first you don’t truly love it. This quote resonated with me because so many millennials won’t take an opportunity unless there is a paycheck attached to it. If something is a true passion of yours, starting off by taking good opportunities is a way to network and prove yourself until you land an opportunity to get paid for what you love. Life is about working towards goals and dreams. Having patience is key.

What is a favorite simple recipe to prepare at home?
When it comes to cocktails my favorite recipe to make at home is a Mule. I love trying new spirits with the tradition recipe. I use lime juice, ginger beer, and whatever liquor I’m in the mood for that day. Right now I’m feeling spicy tequilas so I’ve been adding that to my Mules regularly. However, can never go wrong with a traditional Moscow Mule which uses vodka. Usually I pair my Mule with some sort of fish like salmon for dinner.

What is a favorite childhood food memory?
My dad used to always get me a Quarter Pounder with cheese and no pickles at McDonald’s all the time. It was my favorite thing to eat as a kid. I haven’t had one in years now.

What are some things that you can’t leave the house without?
Nowadays, I can’t leave the house without my camera. I’m always on the go and as a cocktail and lifestyle blogger, you never know when you’ll get the opportunity to snap an awesome moment to keep forever or share with an audience online. I also am attached at the hip with my cell phone, but who isn’t these these days.

Tell me about what you’re working on now.
Right now I am working on expanding my cocktail blog to a wider audience. I’m primarily based in Boston but I would love to expand to NYC by the end of this year. If I could have my blog recognized nationally by by 2022 I would be elated! I’ve been hosting and curating events around Boston to give young people something to do in the city that’s both fun and responsible, all while getting my name out there.

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Thank you so much for participating Claudiane!

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Photos: Provided by Claudiane Philippe.

{You Pick Six} An Interview with Public Relations Consultant: Chris Haynes

Public Relations Consultant Chris HaynesLooking for a Boston PR guy? Well, that’s literally Chris Haynes’ handle on Twitter. He’s currently celebrating 17 years as the founder of his public relations firm, CBH Communications.

Chris shares fun events and stylish happenings around the city, along with pictures showing the beauty of New England. His pictures of places like Nantucket will make you swoon and feel nostalgic for somewhere that you’ve never been. And then there’s the food.

He works with some of my favorite places in Boston, probably yours too. Recognized as one of “Style Makers of Boston,” Chris helps us all up our game.

For the seventh part of the interview series, You Pick Six, let’s hand the wheel over to Chris!

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What is a favorite simple recipe to prepare at home?
My grandmother’s pie crust recipe. So simple, easy and the best! I still have the recipe that I hand copied (spelling mistakes and all) when I was a little kid onto a recipe card. My niece and nephew ask me to make it –but not for pie crusts, but for these little treats we called Lamby Tails. Basically you make the crust, roll it out, butter it and then top with a sugar and cinnamon mix. Then roll and chop! No one can resist. Even my vegan sister!

What is a favorite dessert?
Right now Blackbird Doughnuts in the South End.

birthday donutsWhat is some of the best advice you’ve ever received?
Professionally: Clients do not owe you thank you if they are paying you. Personally: Try not to push your life stresses onto friends or family –they won’t hang out long if you do.

What is a favorite childhood food memory?
My grandparents lake house and swimming!

What do you think that most people don’t understand about food?
That if it’s ‘unattractive’ or ‘unfamiliar’ they will not try it. Period. Duh, your pallet grows and changes with age — you have to taste and taste and taste.

You couldn’t get the ‘jaws of life’ that they use on cars to get an oyster down my throat — that is until I started doing PR for Legal Seafoods and had to eat one at a media dinner. Then it hit me like a truck — they were delicious! The best! Today I cannot get enough.

What is the best meal you ever had and where was it?
When I went to summer camp as a kid, I clear as day, remember the counselor going around the fire pit and asking us, “if we could eat at any restaurant in the world, where and what would it be?”  All the other kids answered McDonalds, Wendy’s, etc. I yelled out “the restaurant on top of the Eiffel Tower!”  Everyone just looked at me, but truth be told, my favorite movie at the time was Superman II and there was scene at the then restaurant in the Eiffel Tower.  Anyway, fast forward to three years ago and I finally achieved dining at my dream restaurant and a result the BEST MEAL I ever had!  My friend and I dined at Alain Ducasse, Le Jules Verne in the Eiffel Tower.  I’m not sure I have ever or will ever have a better meal!

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Thank you so much for participating Chris!

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Photos by Chris Haynes.

{You Pick Six} An Interview with Public Relations Consultant: Chris Lyons

PR Consultant Chris Lyons in front of an outside fire pit grilling food.If you’ve enjoyed learning about the latest restaurants, recent grocery store openings, and generally all things food related in the New England area, Chris Lyons Communications might have been behind the news.

She is a public relations consultant and entrepreneur who knows how to get things done and spread the word. She gets us bloggers involved and sometimes feeds us too!

I always enjoy learning more about the local food scene from Chris, so let’s learn a little more about her for the fourth part of the interview series, You Pick Six.

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What is a favorite simple recipe to prepare at home?
Make your favorite meatloaf recipe, but instead of just pushing it into a pan, flatten in into an oblong (on wax paper) and layer on whatever vegetables and cheese you have in the fridge. Last week I used whole leaf spinach, sauteed leeks and burrata. Using the wax paper, roll the meat into a thick cylinder, seal the edges, and bake for 40 minutes at 350 degrees. Slices prettily and is good cold too.

La Salamandra dulce de lecheWhat is a favorite dessert?
Anything made with cooked milk: dulce de leche, caramel, butterscotch.

What is a favorite snack?
I always crave sugar, never salt, and prefer things that are chewy. I love fruit leather, gummies and gumdrops, salt water taffy, DOTS.

What are some of your pet peeves in the kitchen?
I hate peeling things — apples, potatoes, cukes, etc.

What is a favorite cookbook?
Anything written by Cathy Walthers, a private chef and multi-cookbook author based on Martha’s Vineyard. Her “Raising the Salad Bar” is a minor classic.

Tell me about where you grew up.
I was born in Brooklyn and grew up mostly on Long Island, so the foods I feel most connected to emotionally are deli meats (I still adore olive loaf), full dill pickles, seeded rye bread, bagels, diner breakfasts and halvah. I’m the most Jewish WASP you’ll ever meet.

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Thank you so much for participating Chris!

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Photos provided by Public Relations Consultant Chris Lyons.