I had an early flight to Chicago and thankfully slept most of the way. Once I landed I caught a cab to Bob and Angel’s house to help prepare for the #NYEribroast. Apparently Bob plans a delightful feast each year and with the help of Matt and Christine, serves up a platter full of tasty food and wonderful memories. This year was even more exciting because Will and Laurin were going to host the event at their farmhouse and a mid-century modernist house on Lake Geneva.

We spent the day prepping vegetables and Bob made a delightful parsnip soup.


Parsnips I peeled.

Christine showed up to help and we shared a bottle of wine. Angel was providing the dessert and got busy making a decadent chocolate cake with coffee icing and chocolate ganache.


Hard work but totally worth it, the chocolate cake was peerless.

We ordered in a pizza and spent the evening prepping. The next day we gathered all of the supplies we would need for the big event. Angel was busy frosting his cake and Bob and I loaded up the car.


Sadly, when the car was loaded, we didn’t have room for Angel.

Angel was still working on his cake and decided to ride up with some other party guests. Bob and I set out and after a quick stop at Wolfys hit the road.


Chicago sure knows how to make a hot dog.

It was a lovely day to drive to Wisconsin. Bob turned on some excellent tunes and we made great time. We stopped in town for a few last minute supplies and then made out way to the lake house.


The exquisite mid century modernist lake house where we welcomed 2016.

Laurin and I worked on setting the table.


So beautiful and oddly shaped. We began referring to it as the penis table and finished setting the places just as the sun was setting on the lake.

Meanwhile, Bob, Matt, and Christine were finishing up the scalloped potatoes.


Chefs at work!

I was in charge of chilling the champagne as well.


My champagne chilling concept involved snow and lights. It was working really well until the temperature dropped below 20.

Fred and Susy arrived and brought Angel and his beautiful cake. Fred, who is an accomplished DJ, had brought his equipment but discovered that the speakers were not working and he and Susy left to try to find some in town.


Fred and Susy risking life and limb in the Wisconsin winter to ensure there would be dancing. Those are good people!

I put on my party dress, Angel put on his tux and we decided to walk to the farmhouse to enjoy the cocktail hour with the rest of the party guests.


Angel and I about to journey out into the winter weather for cocktails.

The farmhouse is only about a quarter of a mile away and it would have been a lovely walk except that it was late December in Wisconsin and the snow had frozen and we had no map and it was dark. Really, really dark! We made a few wrong turns down some ice roads and the howling winds kept blowing up my skirt. Believe me when I tell you a short skirt, tights and a crinoline are no match for Wisconsin winter weather!

It was a Christmas miracle we found the farmhouse, but when we did arrive there was a blazing fire and some lovely Wisconsin cheeses. We were lucky that Will is a terrific driver and very familiar with the treacherous winter weather conditions and was able to give us a ride back in a car when the cocktail hour had ended.


Here’s to good food and good friends!

We took our places at the table.


Starting our New Year’s Eve feast with a lovely toast from our gracious host

The meal was flawless. The parsnip soup was flavorful, the salad was simple but elegant, the potatoes were creamy and delicious, and the crown roast and horseradish sauce was utter perfection!



The only thing more wonderful than the meal was the company. Afterwards, Fred began spinning some tunes and we cleared some room to dance. Fred is an amazing DJ and the eclectic mix of music he played was just right for our festive crowd.

We took a break to have some cake and then somebody noticed that it was nearing midnight!


Welcome to the eleganza, 2016!

We danced and snacked for hours.

The evening began to wind down and we headed back to the farmhouse. We needed to rest up for brunch!


Happy New Year!

About isherri

I'm a family engagement expert who travels for work and for pleasure. In fact, I’m half hippy, half clown, latte sipping, brunch munching, MINI driving, rabid social media enthusiast.
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