By Adam Yaney-Keller
“Happy Holidays!” Most often, we focus on the later part of this well-worn salutation at this time of year. Our minds drift to images of candles, holiday lights, warm fires and presents to loved ones, or maybe a cookie-cutter film made just for T.V. that we dread (but secretly enjoy). But, let’s shift our attention the first word of that statement – that elusive and all-consuming feeling of happiness. We know what makes up the holidays. But what are the ingredients of happiness?
Some researchers look at people nearing the end of their lives, and asks them questions about their biggest regrets. Bronnie Ware, an Australian end-of-life care nurse and author, did exactly this with her patients for years. She found one of the most common themes among her patients’ answers was this: “I wish that I had let myself be happier”.
For many of us, this statement may be startling – perhaps because it rings so true. And how much truer is that statement now, in these times when we are asked (for good reason) to sacrifice the holiday get-togethers with friends and family that normally bring us such joy? In times such as these, how do we “let” ourselves be happy? An answer for these times, we hope, is through this month’s virtual “Holiday & Celebrations” tasting. Read on for the explanation…
It is interesting we have to allow ourselves be happy, the implication being that maybe when it comes to happiness, we are our own worst enemy. It is the little voice in our head that looks at the happiness ingredient and says, “Oh, better not try that…”. But what if we ignore that voice? Or better yet, create the space for it to say, “Oh, I have got to try that!” What if, in the true spirit of a “Happy Holiday”, we throw caution to the wind, and for an evening, let ourselves be not only happy, but positively indulgent? That is our goal with our virtual holiday celebration get together. If the current situation requires that we sacrifice our normal holiday gatherings, then let us to do it in style, and replace them with something wonderful – delicious food and drink, guided in its tasting by the loving hands who created it and shared with a community all gathered in the same (virtual) room. This is exactly the reason we are sampling four desserts in this tasting, instead of our usual single sweet. If we are asked to sacrifice, then we sacrifice we shall. But we will do it indulging on the likes of Crème Brûlée Tiramisu and Mousse au Chocolat with Chestnut Puree, and we shall never, ever look back.
When we reflect on holiday seasons come and gone, we hope that this will not be remembered as a season lost to a lockdown, as happiness that we did not let us ourselves attain. Although we cannot gather as we usually do, that does not mean we cannot gather virtually. With this tasting we aim to bring you all together in virtual hearth and home, around the delight of a meal shared in good company. So, join us in raising a glass and toasting to the “Happy” in “Happy Holidays”. Bon Appetit!
To purchase tickets for our upcoming tasting event on Dec. 11, 2020, please click here