The florist we've chosen for our wedding has a storefront in my neighborhood that specializes in wine and flowers -- it seems like sort of an odd combination, but since I love wine and I love flowers, I was happy to let that slide.
While I was in the shop -- called Avision -- this past weekend for a preview of my wedding flowers (they're so pretty!), I picked up one of their gift brochures. They create custom baskets that pair a bottle of wine with a bouquet of gorgeous flowers -- both typically sharing similar design colors or scent/taste attributes.
This seems like such a "Duh!" idea for a hostess gift, special birthday, or thank you. The baskets created at Avision are absolutely gorgeous, but this also seems like a wonderful do-it-yourself project....pair a soft rose wine with pink peonies, champagne with poppies (get it?), etc. And I love that they snuggle them together in a large basket for a cohesive look. So cool.
If you're in the Chicago area, I highly encourage a visit to the shop. They offer a free wine tasting from 5-7pm every Friday -- and have a great selection of top-quality wines. While I was there, I asked the owner Clint for help picking out a bottle of red and the very first one he suggested happened to be JiTs absolute favorite wine -- I was sold! Plus, the bottles are pretty reasonably priced and the folks at the shop are extremely helpful. I tend to get really overwhelmed in wine shops, so that was a nice change!
Finally-- if you're planning a wedding or party -- you may want to check them out. They've come up with some really creative ideas for our wedding (I don't want to give away details, but I'm super excited) and have been great about explaining details and working within our budget.
As a point of full disclosure, the owner's mother is an acquantance of my parents' but I am not being paid or recieving a discount to talk them up. I'm just really impressed with their stuff. Besides, who can argue with hearing about a free wine-tasting, right?
Actually -- that gives me an idea -- for anyone local to the Chicago area it would be fun to meet at the shop for a wine tasting and grab dinner afterwards some Friday. Add a comment if you're interested and I'm happy to organize a meet up! Cheers!