Blog Posts by Sunset Magazine

  • Top 10 Ski Destinations

    Whether you're all about the hot toddies, mountain views, Wild West saloons, or après-ski eats, we've got the place for you.

    Steamboat Springs, CO
    Most Old West charm: Steamboat Springs, CO
    Spur-clad cowboys from the area's 400 cattle ranches mingle with fur-clad skiers on main hub Lincoln Avenue. Wanna look like a local? Stop by the 1905 F.M. Light & Sons for cowboy threads.
    > Get more details

    Telluride, CO
    Prettiest town: Telluride, CO
    Nestled in a box canyon, the perfectly preserved Western town is dwarfed by 13,000-foot peaks and Bridal Veil Falls, Colorado's tallest free-falling waterfall.
    > Get more details

    Sandpoint, ID
    Most under the radar: Sandpoint, ID
    When you hear that Sandpoint is in Idaho's Panhandle between the glacially formed Lake Pend Oreille (pon-duh-ray) and the Selkirk Mountains, a natural reaction would be, "Um ...where?" And that's the charm of this small town of folk artists, Olympic snowboarders, and railroad employees.
    > Get more details

    Bend, Oregon
    Most food-focused: Bend, Oregon
    A reinvented logging town

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  • 5 Flawless New Year's Eve Party Menus

    Choose from 5 winning menus that pair perfect party bites with just the right sips.

    Wine soiree
    WINE SOIREE
    At this swank affair, pair the right sips with the appetizers, ranging from caviar to steak-and-mushroom skewers. The menu includes:
    Chinese Scallops
    Chinese Scallops
    You can make these tasty scallops in a flash, leaving you plenty of time to hang out with your guests. Pair with: Brut sparkling wine, Riesling, or Pinot Noir.
    > Get the recipe

    GET ALL WINE SOIREE FOOD & WINE PAIRINGS

    Brew bash
    BREW BASH
    The latest craze? Pairing craft beer with food. Try our suggested styles for a very grown-up take on bar bites. The menu includes:
    Street-Snack Tacos Verdes
    Street-Snack Tacos Verdes
    These finger-food tacos are deceptively easy to make. Pair with: Lager, especially a Mexican one such as Negra Modelo.
    > Get the recipe

    GET ALL BREW BASH FOOD & WINE PAIRINGS

    Retro punch party
    RETRO PUNCH PARTY
    This party brings back the appetizers of the '50s with modern twists. If you want to offer more drink options besides punch, mix up some Manhattans and martinis for your

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  • 23 Delectable Holiday Desserts

    These festive favorites and elegant show-stoppers create holiday cheer with every bite.

    Cranberry Obsession Snow Cake
    Cranberry Obsession Snow Cake
    With its jewel-like filling, this cake is as festive as it gets.
    > Get the recipe

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  • 8 Creative Gift Wrap Ideas

    Get crafty this holiday season with original and beautifully ordinary packaging materials.

    Reusable fabric wrap
    Reusable fabric wrap
    Make the wrapping part of the present. Give Wraps by Chewing the Cud, in San Francisco, are printed with soy-based ink on organic cotton. Shown: Give Cheer in persimmon ($16/28-in. square; chewingthecud.com).

    Floral wrapping paper
    Floral wrapping paper
    Stock up on 100% recycled papers by British Columbia's Banquet Atelier & Workshop-these whim­sical prints won't feel stale come January. Shown: Bouquet, with bluebells, red-hot poker, and other blooms ($4/19- by 27-in. sheet; banquetworkshop.com).

    Accessorized scrap paper
    Accessorized scrap paper
    Recycle your own newspapers, magazine pages, or junk mail as gift wrap. Add a bit of greenery (here, rose hips and redwood sprigs) for color and a festive scent.

    Stamps on kraft paper
    Stamps on kraft paper
    Style your own gift wrap with stamps and colored ink. Kraft paper from Blick Art Materials ($37/roll 1,000 ft. long and 2 ft. wide; dickblick.com). Pinecone (after one found in Yosemite) and dove

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  • Favorite Hannukah Recipes

    Celebrate the Festival of Lights with this modernized rendition of the holiday's classic tastes.

    Latkes
    Latkes 4 Ways
    For many Jews, this traditional potato-and-onion mixture is the flavor of Hanukkah. Try any of our four variations, from cheese latkes to a sweet potato-parsnip rendition, at your holiday meal.
    > Get the recipes

    Pickled Salmon
    Pickled Salmon
    Traditional pickled fish takes a healthful turn with a sparing use of salt and assertive mix of spices. Serve with toasted rye bread or pocket bread, shredded cucumber, and reduced-fat sour cream.
    > Get the recipe

    Quick Brisket Puffs
    Quick Brisket Puffs
    For a quick Hanukkah appetizer, use leftover brisket to create these tasty puffs. If you're keeping kosher, use puff pastry made without butter.
    > Get the recipe

    Tunisian Potato Turnovers
    Tunisian Potato Turnovers
    Many Americans associate Jewish cooking with Eastern European flavors, but these turnovers offer a fresh take on the traditional latkes with seasonings from North Africa.
    > Get the recipe

    Twice-Baked Beef Brisket with Onions
    Twice-Baked Beef Brisket with Onions
    Double

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  • 21 Festive Holiday Arrangements

    'Tis the season to dress up your home and garden with fresh flowers, berries, and foliage.

    Bits & bits wreath
    Bits & bits wreath
    This wreath is made from "bits and bits" of items picked up while walking after a big storm. Pine, fir, rosemary, magnolia leaves, succulents, and berries are wrapped into the wreath.
    > Related: 24 beautiful DIY wreaths

    Driftwood arrangement
    Driftwood arrangement
    Use a piece of found driftwood as a rustic backdrop to moss, small evergreens, and succulents.

    Tabletop decorations
    Tabletop decorations
    In a season that's often predictable, mix it up with a rosemary-nest place setting and a centerpiece of forest finds (take care with wild mushrooms; many are poisonous).
    > Related: 8 more ways to refresh your holiday table

    Foraged
    Foraged "tree"
    Instead of decking the halls with boughs, use felled branches to make your own right-size tree. Buy a piece of cone-shaped floral foam and insert branches. Once the tree looks full enough, add succulents, berries, and leaves. Ornaments not needed.

    Planter
    Planter
    Recycle a wooden crate into a

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  • 64 Favorite Christmas Cookies

    For a sweet end-of-year treat, get inspired to bake these favorite bar and butter cookies, cut-outs, chewy drops, and crispy slices.

    White Christmas Dream Drops
    White Christmas Dream Drops
    Unlike traditional meringues, which are crisp all the way through, these are still chewy on the inside, like mini pavlovas-but with white chocolate chips and plenty of peppermint. For an elegant touch, dip the edges in melted dark chocolate.
    > Get the recipe

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  • 24 Beautiful Christmas Wreath Ideas

    Decorate your home and garden with winter colors and lovely natural materials.

    Crafty wreath
    Crafty
    Textile artist Jennifer June, whose former Seattle store, Hermitage, stocked under-the-radar wallpaper, adds punch to her wreath by crafting a mini mountainscape. Green is the base for silkscreened balsa-wood trees and snowcapped mountains.
    > Get the how-to

    Beachy wreath
    Beachy
    The creations that Heather Pando makes for her L.A. design studio, Little World Design, use botanicals in a whimsical fashion-a style translated to this wreath. One of Heather's favorite sights is springtime magnolia blossoms framed against the sky.
    > Get the how-to

    Woodsy wreath
    Woodsy
    People seek out Montana interior designer Kate Ledford for her uncanny ability to decorate using items they already own. "I always look for found items wherever I go, and I like to recultivate things in unexpected ways," she says-which explains her collection of deer antlers, accumulated while foraging in the forest (deer shed them naturally).
    > Get the how-to

    Foraged wreath

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  • 12 Favorite Cookbook Gifts

    To get gift ideas for the foodie in your life, check out these delicious culinary collections.
    The Omnivore's Recipe Keeper
    A personalized recipe book
    Now there's a stylish place to stash all those recipes you've clipped from magazines and newspapers: Celia Sack's The Omnivore's Recipe Keeper. Embellished with food images culled from Celia's personal collection of vintage cookbooks (she owns Omnivore Books, in San Francisco), it's as beautiful as it is handy.

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  • 9 Ultimate Holiday Destinations

    Ski, skate, sled, or just relax by the fire at these cozy winter retreats

    Emerald Lake Lodge
    Emerald Lake Lodge, Field, B.C.
    High in the Canadian Rockies, Emerald Lake Lodge gives you deep, soft snows on a 13-acre peninsula jutting out into Emerald Lake. In the main lodge-a hand-hewn timber structure that dates back to 1902-you'll play pool by the fireplace, drink at an oak bar salvaged from a 19th-century Yukon saloon, then sup on dishes like duck breast and hazelnut risotto.
    > Get more info

    The Ranch at Rock Creek
    The Ranch at Rock Creek, Philipsburg, MT
    The Wild West goes glam at the new Ranch at Rock Creek, about 1 1/4 hours southeast of Missoula. Feeling sporty? We won't rattle off the full list of winter activities but will note that they include Percheron-led sleigh rides. Lazy? There's no shame in whiling away the hours with a book and a hot toddy by the crackling fire in the Granite Lodge after a massage at the spa.
    > Get more info

    West Shore Café & Inn
    West Shore Café & Inn, Homewood, CA
    You won't find this anywhere else on Lake

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