December 2011 Archives - Walker Zanger BlogWalker Zanger Blog

December 2011


Friday Fare…"I'll take Manhattan".

Everything is crossed off your holiday “To Do List” and it’s time to sit back, turn up the volume on those Christmas tunes and enjoy all that you have accomplished. This weeks Friday Fare is just what  Santa ordered, a holiday twist on the traditional Manhattan. Who can say no to cherries and chocolate. Cheers!


via Saveur




1 cup sour cherry juice, plus more for rim of glass
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup kirsch (cherry-flavored liqueur)

1 tsp. cocoa powder
1 tsp. superfine sugar
3 oz whiskey
4 dashes chocolate bitters
1 pitted sour cherry, to garnish


1. Make the cherry syrup: In a saucepan, bring cherry juice and granulated sugar to a boil; remove from heat. Allow to cool. Stir in kirsch. Chill.

2. Rim the glass: In a small bowl, mix the cocoa powder and superfine sugar. Pour the mixture onto a plate. Pour some cherry juice into a wide, shallow bowl. Dip the rim of a

martini glass into the juice, then dip it into the cocoa mixture to create a thin chocolate ring.

3. Make the cocktail: In a cocktail shaker 3/4 filled with ice, add whiskey, 3/4 ounces cherry syrup, and bitters. Shake vigorously until well-chilled. Pour into rimmed martini glass. Garnish with cherry.


Home for the Holidays.

As Santa wishes he said “No” to those last few cookies, tightens his belt, and gets ready to slide down chimney’s far and wide, we’re taking an easier approach and simply opening our front doors to welcome in friends and family this holiday season. Here we offer some of our favorites decorated for the holidays. Welcome in and enjoy!


via Traditional Home


via Pinterest


via Traditional Home


via Canadian House & Home


via Martha Stewart


via Pinterest


via Pinterest







Monday Mosaic – Happy Hanukkah.

L to R: Tempo Imperial White, Weave Water Blend, Studio Moderne Calacata Trousdale Hex, Chelsea Art Glass Winter Sea,Vintage Glass Denim Lustre, and Weave White


Friday Fare – Nighty Nights.

For our first “Friday Fare” we thought we’d share a super simple, yet elegant Christmas treat. These just couldn’t be easier to make and taste just as good as they look.

Nighty Nights

2 egg whites
2/3 c. white sugar
1/4 tsp. vanilla
1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
1 cup good quality chocolate bits

Set oven to 350 degrees. With wire whip or beater, whip egg whites until foamy. Then adding sugar, a little at a time, beat until stiff. Fold in vanilla, chocolate bits and nuts.
Line a large ungreased cookie sheet with aluminum foil. Place spoonfuls of cookie batter on foil fairly close together (they will not grow).
Place in oven on 2nd rack

from top and than shut oven off.
Leave in overnight (do not peek). In morning remove from oven. Store in air tight container.

Happy Holidays!


Design Crack – The Windy City.

Visiting a city rich in historical architecture is  like crack for a stone and tile geek like me.  Around every corner  is an amazing building with beautiful decorative details. I can’t wait to get out on the streets with camera in hand!

Chicago, one of my favorite US cities, is a great walking city to see the development of American architecture and design. One of the city’s jewels is the Cultural Center, a stunning celebration of marble, Tiffany glass, and mosaics.  It also happens to have the largest Tiffany Glass dome ever constructed! Across the street from Millennial Park, it holds a place of honor on Michigan Avenue, yet the building’s sober classical facade gives little hint to the beauty inside.
I stumbled into it one day when I was in the city for a trade show and had decided to walk back to my hotel from the convention center on a scavenger hunt for cool architectural details…

This very modern looking glass and steel honeycomb ceiling that greeted me  in the vestibule of the main entrance, was just the beginning of a unfolding designorama. Once inside I feasted my eyes on the interior,  completely clad in

White Marble from Carrara, Italy and  inlaid with Tiffany  glass and gold leaf mosaics.  Add to this the ornate carved plaster ceilings and brass light fixtures and you can see why it was called the “Palace of the People” when it opened as the city’s first public library in 1897.



The inlaid glass borders surrounding the beautiful cast iron grill recalls Romanesque Italian designs, and I love how the marbleized glass almost mimics the movement in stone.

Apropos of a library, the names of famous authors are highlighted in classically themed mosaics though out the building… Check out the amazing chandelier modeled after a classic brazier.

At this point, my brain was about to explode, but I kept ascending the stairs, holding tight to the baluster to prevent the dizziness brought on by the decorative onslaught from  bringing me to my knees.

Along the way,  other amazing details came to light, such as the sensually curved marble walls. A sublime detail now, but an incredible technical feat at the time the building was constructed.

As I reached the top of the final flight of stairs to the main hall, now used for musical performances, I could just  glimpse the magnificent  Tiffany Glass Dome. Simply breathtaking!

There is so much magnificent decorative and architectural beauty in our major US cities, and I find all of it very stimulating and inspiring to my work. What is your favorite US city for architectural treasures?


All photo images and text are the property of Walker Zanger. Please do not use for commercial purposes without permission. You are welcome to repost. copyright 2014.

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