The sun began to set on Grandvaux; the sky on fire with streaks of pinks and orange, and we sat on a bench overlooking the glassy lake and exhaled. Guests would be arriving in minutes to share a meal in one of the most beautiful places on earth and we couldn’t help but feel a pang in our chest–only this time it wasn’t the usual pangs of homesickness, it was a moment of frenzied elation and anticipation for what would turn out to be the best Thanksgiving we’ve ever had.
Guests meandered into the stunning courtyard of the Maison Buttins-de-Loïes (a stunning 18th century cave in the heart of Grandvaux) alit with lanterns and strings of white lights, and were welcomed with a special aperitif made by the one and only Rodolphe, an experienced mixologist, drinks blogger, and famous Swiss riviera barfly with 20 years under his belt. He concocted festive cocktails featuring prosecco and blends of liqueur, fresh fruit, and herbs. The bubbles and the ambiance warmed us up as we stood beneath the Grandvaux moon, and we made introductions as most faces were new ones.
Once the chill became too much to handle, we headed into the cave’s pressoir where in the light of hundreds of candles, tree branches and autumn leaves hung about the wooden beams. We wanted a cozy and seasonal ambiance for our dinner and found that nature offered the best decor.
We were so pleased to find that many guests had never celebrated Thanksgiving before–what an honor to be the first to introduce them to our favorite holiday! Once the introductions were made, the Aēsop goody bags discovered, and the wine poured, we began to indulge and enjoy the feast prepared by the super talented SK (Street Kitchen) team.
Many of the traditional ingredients were provided by our friends at Globus–guests were blown away by the quality and taste of the food. The figs, the turkey, the pumpkin pie–such a difference great ingredients make (and a chef who knows how to use them!).
Many guests arrived as strangers, but, as cliché as it sounds, it seems we all left as friends. It was so fun watching diners get up from their seats and share conversations with their neighbors–there was laughter, there were embraces, high-fives, and adolescent-like giggles. We drank too much and ate too much and smiled until our cheeks went numb. And when it came time to look at our watches, long after the last of the pie was eaten and digestif drunk, we couldn’t believe the hour and wished we could make it last just a little bit longer. And that, friends, is a sign that it was a damn good Thanksgiving.
If you’d like to see more photos from our evening check out the album below:
In the spirit of gratitude, we want to publicly thank everyone who made this gorgeous evening possible. Thank you to Globus for so generously opening up their delicatessa and providing some of the finest ingredients Lausanne has to offer. Thank you to Aēsop for giving all of our guests a variety of your exceptional products. Thank you to Rodolphe and Dettling & Marmot for mixing up some wicked cocktails–the rosemary citrus prosecco was such a refreshing and festive touch! Grazie to San Pellegrino for the magnums of bubbly (water). Thanks to the Maison Buttins-de-Loës for being such an exceptional and flexible venue. A humongous thank you to Emma, Toni, Mickey, and Jana from the SK (Street Kitchen) team for co-hosting this event with us, for creating the most delectable dishes; for setting up, tearing down, and all the blood, sweat, smiles, and tears it took to make this Thanksgiving happen. Thank you to our favorite photographer Gabriel, who not only took on the challenge of photographing a dim-lit cave with no natural light, but also served dishes alongside us, made sure we stayed hydrated, then bought us flowers the next day. And lastly, thank you to our amazing readers and guests for making this evening worth it. Your kind words, your smiles, your encouragement, your festive spirit made us feel so loved and so fortunate to live in this adopted city with you. We love you all and wish you the happiest Thanksgiving.