05 June 2008

Homemade Party

So we finally had our housewarming party. After a week of cleaning & organizing, 2 trips to the farmer’s market, 2 stops at the Ralph’s, and 2 passes at the Whole Foods, we were ready. We had a mostly local/organic/homemade menu: 2 pitchers of Bloody Marys made with my own tomato juice, a pitcher of Mojitos, Mimosas, onion dip, a plate of fromage & charcuterie from Joan’s on Third (our favorite gourmet deli in Donny’s old hood – not local food, but a great local vendor), smoked salmon tea sandwiches, pretzel rolls, red velvet ice cream cone cupcakes with cream cheese frosting, brownies and a fruit tart.

I also purchased compostable cups & straws made out of corn, sugarcane plates and silverware made out of vegetables from BiodegradableStore.com, of Eco-Products. Please note**these products are not local. In fact, they are not even made in the US. After many hours of research I have found that almost every single option for biodegradable or compostable tableware come from Asia. Many companies will confuse you by saying they are distributed in the US, but do not be fooled. Those that are honest and upfront about where they manufacture are also forward that they have all fair trade workers. Greenfeet does sell Nat-ur Corn's silverware that is made out of corn from the US, but since I was making a last minute purchase, it was cheaper to buy everything from just one company. Now, there is still a question about where to dispose these products once they are used. Most of them call for commercial composting, but others say you can cut them up into small pieces and throw in your own outdoor composter. One company called, EATware, even boasts that you can eat their products. If you are not in the mood to snack on your plate – they claim to have a composting turnover of only 2 weeks if you leave it in water. Since local is not an option, here is a list of the other websites I compared products/prices: Branch, Treecycle, and Earth-Friendly Home. I can’t comment on any of these companies, but I can say that Biodegradablestore.com was very helpful and easy to order from. They also seem to have the largest selection of options and quantities.

All of our guests responded well to our request to consider the environment when gifting. We excitedly got some potted flowers/cactus, a fish named Milkshake and several bottles of California wine. Katie & Junio even recycled a book to us. Though it did travel 3000 miles from their home in Brooklyn, NY, we were its fifth recipient. And our favorite was a gift certificate to Whole Foods.

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