the bride and the blogger

Posted by susan on July 6th, 2010. Filed under: epicurious travel, girls' weekend.

Two weekends ago I was surprised with my bachelorette party, except it wasn’t just a party – it was a full, perfect and unforgettable weekend. Jenny had managed to keep everything a secret until it was about to unfold. On Friday night the only thing I knew was that I had to be at my parent’s house by 8:00 am for breakfast the next day, to dress cute, but comfortably because we’d be outside walking around, to bring a fun outfit for dancing at night, sleepover clothes and a bathing suit.

Bryce, one of my brides maids, couldn’t make it, but she made sure that I felt her presence throughout the weekend. Beforehand she texted soundbites of herself commenting on our planned activities to Lisa, which Lisa would play at relevant parts of the weekend. It was hilarious.

On Saturday morning, after breakfast, we headed to our first location: a hotel in Rhode Island. One by one my friends slowly arrived and then we made our way to the mystery location: Greenvale Vineyards in Portsmouth.

Close friends and wine, to me, are the only ingredients I need for a magical weekend.

While walking through the vineyard, with my camera in hand and ready to shoot, I was told that when planning my weekend, my friends wanted to be sure that whatever we did, it should be something I could blog about. They know me too well…

Greenvale is an historic farm that makes estate grown wines. The tasting room, cozy and filled with character, is a restored stable. And the vineyards overlook the water.

new england winery

While some wineries also sell imports, Greenvale only makes wine from the grapes that they are able grow to show off what the region can do, which I thought was very cool. The grapes were just babies still, but on our personal tour we learned about their future and how their current environment will eventually lead to a delicious wine.


For example, the vines grow on a slight hill that slowly reaches out into the water. While one would think that this angle, combined with our New England climate, would be an obstacle for the vines, it isn’t. They thrive on adversity – their roots are actually made to struggle and reach for the water flowing downward under the ground.

rhode island vineyards

When our tour ended the tasting began. My favorite was the 2007 Greenvale Vidal Blanc. And after the tasting, we decided that we needed to have just one more sample of a red and a white.

greenvale vineyard

As planned, they definitely gave me a lot to blog about. And I took tons of photos.

But now on to the most important ingredients to the weekend, my friends…

wine tasting

Jenny, my beautiful sister and Maid of Honor, and Me

wine tasting

Kerry and Pam pretending to sample before the pour

wine tasting in rhode island

Me, Maureen and Jill, probably reminiscing about our antics in grade school

wine tasting

Lisa and I hamming it up for one of many photo opps that weekend

After the tour we headed back to the hotel to get ready, drink some champagne which I enjoyed in my fun, personalized bride flute – and then headed out to dinner in Newport. My lovelies chose a tapas restaurant called Sambar. The food, the ambiance and of course, the sangria was amazing.

sambar in newport

Sue and Shannon up front, Kerry, me, Jenny, Jill, Maureen, Lisa and Pam enjoying dinner and Sangria at Sambar.

Aren’t my friends so pretty?

We ended the night with dancing, and the weekend with a relaxing day at Kerry’s family’s beach house in Narragansett.

I can’t stop thinking about how lucky I am to have such thoughtful, generous and amazing friends.

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