New Kitchen for a New Season

During Season 6 of The VeryVera Show, you might notice a new location being filmed: my brand new test kitchen! Back in April, the VeryVera Cottage underwent a total kitchen renovation. Starting with an outdated, family-sized kitchen, we were on a mission to make the best VeryVera test kitchen possible. We started by tearing down the wall to our craft room and to create one large kitchen space. We now have the room we need for recipe testing, camps, and our upcoming Chef Series (more on that coming out later)!

Before

The first hero on the project was Mitchell Florence and his guys at Madison’s Millwork and Coating Specialists, who custom-built all of the cabinetry and the prep tables. Madison’s Millwork gave us the structure of our beautiful new kitchen and provided us with enough storage for all of our kitchen necessities. To be able to film in the new space, we needed to update the lighting in the kitchen. After running into a few renovation hiccups (as is expected), we were able to add in recessed can lighting as well as great under-the-cabinet lighting to make a bright and energizing space in which to cook. With the biggest issues behind us, we continued. We decided to go with laminate hardwood floors throughout the entire kitchen. With so many children coming through the kitchen during Camp, we thought this would be the most practical and durable decision.

During

Cabinets, done. Electric, done. Floors, done. Now it was time for the fun stuff: counter tops and appliances! When filming the Easter-themed episode from the Southern Living-inspired home in Woodside, we took note of the gorgeous marble counter tops and asked who provided them. The answer was Cambria, and that they were actually quartz. Quartz is durable, cost effective, and, best of all, beautiful. Our friends at Star Granite put us in contact with Cambria to have their “Britannica” counter tops put into our new kitchen, and we were blown away at the result! Made to look like marble, you wish you could wear it as a dress! We chose to use the quartz as our back splash as well for a continuous, luxurious feel. We could not be happier with our counter top and back splash.

Finally, the other stars of the show could make their grand entrance. Our overall show sponsor, Sub-Zero and Wolf, outfitted our new test kitchen with M-Series built-in double ovens, a warming drawer, a built-in drawer microwave, an induction stovetop, an ice machine, an Asko dishwasher, and a French door refrigerator. We could not be more excited to share our new space on this season of the show!

After

Thank you to all of our test kitchen sponsors: Madison’s Millwork, Star Granite Interiors, Cambria Quartz, and Sub-Zero and Wolf! Be sure to tune in for Season 6!

–Rachel Schifter, Associate Producer of The VeryVera Show

August Advertiser of the Month

This month is all about our most stylish advertiser- Amelia Myers Interior Design! Amelia Myers is a fantastic interior designer who studied at the University of Georgia and now works out of Camden, SC. We are so proud to be able to work with her! She has been with the show since we began airing on WCBD in September of 2016, and she’s even joined me for a cooking demonstration in Charleston, where she expertly demonstrated setting a holiday table.

  Be sure to check out her new website. The photos of her work are swoon-worthy. We know you’ll love her rustic, clean style as much as we do!

 

 

July Advertiser of the Month

It’s time to announce my July Advertiser of the Month! I love a good farmers market, and it just so happens that Good Earth Produce and Garden Center in Augusta is better than good- it’s great! One of the things I love most about Good Earth is their commitment to staying local: they buy and sell locally, hire local people, and support local business. They’re even one of our sponsors for this year’s VeryVera Cooking Camp!

Big things are in the works for this partnership! This Christmas, look forward to a very special Good Earth episode during Season 6 of the VeryVera Show, and keep an eye out for their commercial. Remember to keep Good Earth in mind as the seasons change, as well. They carry seasonal plants, produce, and even Christmas trees!

I highly recommend a visit to my favorite farmers market, and I’m grateful to be able to work with them!

 

 

 

 

 

A Summer Well Spent

Hi! I’m Caroline McCully, and I’m the Summer Marketing Intern for VeryVera. I’m a Communications major at the College of Charleston, where I just finished my freshman year. There’s something about a college student home for the summer that just seems to say to people, “Ask me questions about my future!” Whether it’s my grandma, my neighbor, or an old family friend I haven’t seen in a while, everybody wants to know what my major is, what I want to be when I grow up, and of course the nebulous, “What are you doing this summer?”

I’ve repeated most of my answers so many times that they feel rehearsed. I have a major, and I know what I plan to do with it, but even the best laid plans are years away from happening. What really gives me confidence in my future, however far away, is explaining  what I’m doing this summer. I’m the Summer Marketing Intern for VeryVera! VeryVera is such a household name in Augusta that I rarely have to say any more. Not only is the company well known for its quality of food, and more recently, on-screen food, it’s well known for its quality of business. When I say that I’m working at VeryVera, the response is almost always the same- “You must be learning so much there!”

I really am! An internship for a rising college sophomore usually means fetching lunch or someone’s laundry, but this summer I’ve been in direct contact with advertisers, assisted with cooking camp,  helped out on the set of the television show, learned how to edit the website, and been given considerable responsibility with the social media pages. I’ve learned more about professionalism, organization, and communication in two and a half months here than I learned in my entire freshman year of college! This internship isn’t just a way to pass the summer, or something to pad my resume. Working here has given me confidence that I can achieve my plans for the future, and I’m one step closer to doing it for having this experience.

When I tell people my major and my goals, I’m telling them what I hope to do someday. But when I tell them I’m working for VeryVera, I have the satisfaction of knowing that I’ve spent this summer making those goals more and more of a reality.

 

You are the FAIRY best!

I have longed for the day when I would be able to host the ultimate “Queen Granny V Tea” for my granddaughter, Lucy. How thrilled I was when her Mom asked if I would participate in this grand event for her 4th birthday and my wheels started turning.

This is where the young ideas and the old-fashioned traditions joined together to create a memorable and sentimental occasion that both the children and the adults truly enjoyed. It started with the precious evite that Mallory outfitted with names befitting each little princess and queen.  All were encouraged to dress in their best, and certainly Granny V took advantage of any opportunity to wear an old dress from her closet. Mallory provided the tiara from her childhood.  

The table was so much fun! Paper plates were the new twist, but nothing would do but to bring in several other generations. My grandmother, Vera, provided the champagne glasses that held the strawberry and lemonade cotton candy. As nervous as we may have been about breakage, not a single one was damaged. Most of these little ones had never had cotton candy! My mother’s Spode tea cups hosted the lemonade and the little girls were so grown up with their pinkies in the air.

Lucy was flanked by her two sisters, Jane and Frances, as she enjoyed her princess cake, and all of her friends enjoyed making tiaras and playing in the fairy garden. They left with a bag of treats tied with a special message that read, “You are the Fairy Best.” 

We’ll have to TOP this for next year….  

Journey to VeryVera

It was Labor Day weekend of my sophomore year of high school. All my friends were heading up to the mountains for the weekend and I hopelessly begged my mom to let me join them. With too much homework, a few big tests in the near future, and soccer practice, I was quickly denied. Instead, she offered me an alternative fun weekend activity: baking. Over the course of that long weekend, my mom and I baked too many cupcakes, and she taught me how to pipe frosting using her Wilton Student Decorating Kit. This was when my love for food and baking began. 

 

Fast forward to my last year at the University of Georgia. I had no idea what I wanted to do after graduation. A degree in Consumer Foods offers so many opportunities, but I didn’t know where to begin. When I was told about an internship with a cooking show, I thought it was too good to be true. It sounded like the internship of my dreams.

 

I began my graduate internship with The VeryVera Show in August of 2016. As an intern, I wasn’t running meaningless errands and fetching coffee. I was brought into the company and given responsibilities that most interns never experience. I was taught management skills, practiced business etiquette, and learned even more about cooking. I was able to learn so much in a short timespan and build on the degree I earned at UGA. In December of 2016, I was brought on full-time as the Associate Producer of the show, which means I got to continue working a job that allows me to truly live out my love of food. From testing recipes, managing the production of a cooking show, and corresponding with both regional and national food celebrities, I have learned so much while working at VeryVera.

 

We have now started writing The VeryVera Cookbook. Two dreams fulfilled in one place?! I consider myself pretty lucky. So far throughout this process, I have been able to use everything I learned during my college career. Writing a cookbook means lots of recipe testing and lots of recipe writing. It has given me the opportunity to use my degree for something I am passionate about. Oh, and writing a cookbook also means eating lots of cake.

 

If you have a passion for food, then VeryVera is the place you need to be. And lucky for you, we are looking for fall interns. Apply today (here) and I’ll save you a slice of cake. 😉

 

Rachel Schifter

June Advertiser of the Month

My June Advertiser of the Month is so near and dear to my heart! Epic Restaurant is located in Columbus, GA and is owned and operated by my good friend Jamie Keating. Jamie has appeared on The VeryVera Show twice, has hosted my team at Epic’s fabulous Chef’s Table, and was my very first VeryVera Cooking Camp franchise owner!

I truly cannot say enough good things about Epic Restaurant.  If you want a taste of what Epic has to offer, take a look at their commercial. Epic has been rated a Four Diamond restaurant by AAA, along with only 2 other restaurants in Georgia outside of Atlanta. No plans to visit Columbus soon? Make them. Believe me, this restaurant is worth it.

I’m so proud to have such an exemplary restaurant advertising on my show in Columbus!

Vera’s Summer Reading List

It’s true–the arrival of the VeryVera Cookbook is closer than you think!

While you wait, Vera has hand-picked a few of her all-time favorite cookbooks for you–call it your summer reading list. These five classic southern cookbooks are sure to satisfy your cravings for new recipes and whet your appetite for the arrival of the VeryVera Cookbook next May!

Around the Southern Table by Rebecca Lang

This beautifully written collection of recipes is everything one could hope for in a cookbook- made from scratch, comforting, and satisfying. In addition to Rebecca Lang’s homey prose, essays by Chick-fil-A founder Truett Cathy and novelist Cassandra King add an extra bit of Southern flair. A must-read for anyone looking for recipes for family dinners or entertaining.

Purchase here.

 

 

 

 

Bon Appetit, Y’all by Virginia Willis

Author Virginia Willis is not only a born-and-bred Southern cook, she’s a classically trained French chef who excels in this area of cuisine. The combination of the two results in a cookbook that is both hospitable and effective in teaching readers how to recreate their favorite classics. This well-organized cookbook is sure to become one of your favorites, whether you’re looking for delicious comfort food or a brand new recipe.

Purchase here.

 

 

 

Callie’s Biscuits and Southern Traditions by Carrie Morey

Carrie Morey founded Callie’s Charleston Biscuits in order to be able to share her mother Callie’s delicious biscuits with people everywhere. Years later, her simplistic Southern style is just as appealing as she shares her new takes on traditional dishes. This is a kitchen staple for any Southern cook.

Purchase here.

 

 

 

 

Foster’s Market Favorites by Sara Foster

Sara Foster’s market opened in 1990 in Durham, North Carolina, and has since become well-known for delicious, simple cooking. All of the restaurant favorites are included in this carefully curated Southern classic. Foster’s Market Favorites contains photography that will make you look twice and recipes that you’ll want to cook again and again.

Purchase here.

 

 

 

 

 

Mastering the Art of Southern Cooking by Nathalie Dupree and Cynthia Graubart

This truly authentic Southern cookbook covers all the bases of cooking, whether it’s basic skills like cleaning vegetables or the mastery of more complicated recipes. Everything is explained with refreshing clarity and entertaining anecdotes, making it easy to see why this cookbook was the recipient of the 2013 James Beard Award for American Cooking.

Purchase here.

May Advertiser of the Month: Daniel Appliance

It brings me great pleasure to announce Daniel Appliance as my May Advertiser of the Month! Daniel Appliance in Columbus, GA is a family-owned appliance store since 1954, spanning 3 generations. Ron Daniel, the company’s current president, was one of my first supporters when I was syndicated to WRBL in Columbus.

Talk to any customer of Daniel Appliance and their praise will tell you everything you need to know! From competitive prices to knowledgeable staff to excellent customer service to in-house servicing, Daniel Appliance can be your one-stop-shop for any home appliance you need.

With almost two years of partnership under our belts, we prepare for our second event at Daniel Appliance on Thursday, May 18th! The store makes for an excellent venue to host a cooking demonstration, especially thanks to the live Wolf Steam Oven on site. Thank you, Daniel Appliance, for the support and for believing in The VeryVera Show!

 

April Advertiser of the Month: Livingood’s Appliances and Bedding

I’m excited to highlight another of my wonderful advertisers as our April Advertiser of the Month. This month, I would like to introduce you to Livingood’s Appliances and Bedding in Savannah.

Livingood’s was one of my first advertisers to come on board after being syndicated to WSAV. The first time I met with Phyllis, the company’s President and Co-owner, there was an immediate kinship that tends to exist between fellow entrepreneurs. Phyllis and her husband, Dale, started the company in 1976. Now with two locations in Savannah, GA and Okatie, SC and over 20,000 showroom square footage, Livingood’s is certainly an entrepreneurial success story.

If you’re in the Savannah area (or not, thanks to online ordering!), I highly recommend this family-owned business that has thrived for 40 years due to its quality and impeccable customer service.

–Vera