The night before her For Reals Meals, Alexis sent me her menu. There were three dishes – two with salmon, one with eggs, and another with bacon. Now, I don’t judge what people eat…but for this series, everything needs to be plant-based. I sent Alexis an email telling her that nothing on her menu would work and that she would have to do another one. I felt really bad sending the email, especially the night before the lunch.
On the way to her house, I was nervous that Alexis would be mad at me or the vibe would be totally weird. I had only met Alexis in passing at a few parties – enough time to compliment her on her hair or some awesome piece of jewelry she was wearing (she always has the best accessories). Part of the fun of these things is getting to meet new people…but was this going to be the most awkward For Reals Meals of all time?
NO. It was the best. As you’ll see in the photos, we had so much fun. As soon as I arrived, Alexis started making jokes about the menu debacle, and we immediately connected over the fact that she had a cat named Joakim Noah (I’m a huge NBA fan). Alexis was warm, hilarious, and made me feel right at home.
For her guests, Alexis invited a group of designers that sell products on her website, Local Eclectic. Designers that she wanted to get to know better or hadn’t met before: Christina Anton from Boo + Boo Factory, Lindsay Lewis from Lindsay Lewis, and Sarah Crump from Silk Shaman. These women ruled. A lot of times when you get a room full of people that have similar businesses, there can be a weird air of competition. Not this crew. Christina, Lindsay, and Sarah were all really open about their processes and kind to one another. Like they were part of a club, not competitors.
And the food! Alexis really pulled off the menu change. She even made homemade ice cream. She found her recipes from some of my favorite sites – Dolly & Oatmeal and Minimalist Baker. That’s the thing, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel when you’re trying to cook in a new way. Grab recipes online, copy something you saw on Instagram, or plantify something from your favorite food magazine.
Whipped Bean Dip with Veggies
Portobella Mushroom Pizzas (Alexis made homemade sauce for these!)
Sweet Potato Cakes with Avocado
Coconut Ice Cream with Raspberry Sauce
Lesson learned. Don’t make it weird before it’s actually weird. You don’t know what the situation will be until you get there. I create shit in my head all the time and then worry about it for nothing. Alexis was the best host and now a new friend. She’s the coolest. I’m excited to hang with her lots more…especially if she’s making more of her ice cream.
Also! One big note. I loved working with photographer Eva Deitch so much on this lunch that I asked her to become the official resident FRM photographer…and she said yes! That sounds like we got engaged or something. But I really am that excited and would totally marry her photos – she’s really talented. You’ll be seeing lots more of her work around here. Can’t wait!
Now head over to Local Eclectic to see all of the work from these awesome designers: Boo + Boo Factory, Lindsay Lewis, and Silk Shaman. Alexis has insane taste, and you’ll for sure find some new designers you’re obsessed with.
And another thank you to Eva Deitch. You can see her work right here.