Type to search

Tasteful Tailgating


Elizabeth Frame has won three tailgating awards at Radnor Hunt. For last year’s “Dinner with a President” theme, she and her friends focused on Christian Grey, the Fifty Shades of Grey protagonist who’s CEO of Grey Enterprises in the erotic romance novel. “Everything on the menu was an aphrodisiac, all tastefully done,” says Frame.

Here’s a nibble from the tailgating pro’s race-day spread.


Cognac-Drenched, Chocolate-Dipped Figs

  • 1 14-oz. package of figs
  • 2 dozen almonds, preferably Marcona
  • 4 cups pomegranate juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1 tbsp. orange zest
  • 1 cup honey
  • 4 cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup cognac or dark spiced rum
  • 1 lb. tempered dark chocolate for dipping

To create a pomegranate-orange syrup, simmer pomegranate juice, sugar, orange juice and orange zest. Stir frequently. Meanwhile, make a small slit in each fig, then insert an almond.

When the syrup has reduced by one quarter, remove from the stove. Let it cool for 15 minutes, then transfer it to a medium-sized mixing bowl. Stir in one cup of the pomegranate orange syrup and one teaspoon of vanilla with the cinnamon, cloves, honey and cognac. Add the figs, and stir to coat evenly. Place the mixture in a sealed container, then marinate overnight.

The next day, drain the figs, reserving the liquor in a small bowl. Place each fig on a small skewer or toothpick with the stem up, then dip them in dark chocolate tempered over a double boiler. Place the figs in paper candy cups or on parchment paper. Serve as soon as possible. The candies should hold for a few hours.

Whip the heavy cream with one teaspoon of vanilla until stiff, and add some of the leftover liquor to taste. Serve alongside figs and 1.5-inch-square pieces of pound cake or sponge cake.


To plan the menu for aWillowdaleSteeplechase tailgate inspired by James Bond, Shawn Roberts and his teammates watched 007 movies, noting the secret agent’s favorite foods and beverages, including martinis—shaken, not stirred. Here are two of their menu highlights.

Elizabeth Frame and tailgate cohort Christie Tomarchio.

Rare Roast Beef and Potato Salad

  • 1 6-pound beef tenderloin
  • 2 lb. russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch cubes
  • Table salt
  • 2tbsp. distilled white vinegar
  • 1 medium rib of celery, chopped fine
  • 2tbsp. minced red onion
  • 3tbsp. sweet pickle relish
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 3/4 tsp. powdered mustard
  • 3/4 tsp. celery seed
  • 2tbsp. minced fresh parsley leaves
  • 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 2 large hard-cooked eggs, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch cubes

Let the beef tenderloin come to room temperature. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Season the tenderloin with salt and pepper, then brown it on all sides in a skillet. Roast the tenderloin until it reads medium-rare on a meat thermometer.

For the salad, place the potatoes in a large saucepan, then cover them with water by one inch. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add salt, reduce the heat to medium, then simmer,
stirring until potatoes are tender, about eight minutes.

Drain the potatoes and transfer them to a large bowl. Add vinegar and toss gently with a rubber spatula to combine. Let stand until potatoes are just warm, about 20 minutes.

In a small bowl, stir together celery, onion, pickle relish, mayonnaise, mustard powder, celery seed, parsley, pepper and a 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold dressing and (if desired) eggs into the potatoes.


For Point-to-Point at Winterthur, BrianCawleyand his friends serve refreshing Pimm’s Cups, mixed by proportion. “Weused to make them individually, but every time we turned around, someone would be standing there with an empty glass, looking for another,” he says. “Now, we make a pitcher—and another.”

The Pimm’s Pitcher

  • 2 parts Pimm’s No. 1
  • 1 parts Tanqueray Gin
  • 7 parts Sprite
  • 1 whole lemon, sliced
  • 1 whole lime, sliced
  • 1 whole orange, sliced
  • 1 English cucumber, sliced on the bias
  • 1 fistful of fresh mint
  • 1 fistful of rosemary

Combine all ingredients in a large pitcher and stir. Let it sit while you set up the tailgate, then serve over ice. Garnish with cucumber slices and a sprig of mint.

Great Reads for the Long WeekendRelax with some reading this extended holiday weekend. 
Q&A: Molly Andrews Burke Owner of ChairloomThe founder of Chairloom shares how she's been able to evolve her business since 2006. 
This Wings for Success Nonprofit Leader Changes Lives on the Main LineDespite pandemic woes, Wings for Success board president Rehana Wolfe is aiming high.
How Chester County Food Bank is Helping Those in NeedMore than feeding the community, the Chester County Food Bank’s innovative model is bringing people together.
10 Local Independent Bookstores on the Main LinePhoto by Adobe Stock Give the gift of a book from one of these Main Line area booksellers.  Looking for great books for loved ones – or yourself? Chester, Delaware and Montgomery counties are filled with great indie bookstores. Shop online and get contactless pick-up, or head into the store to peruse the shelves following […]
Local Adult Education Centers Offer Classes for All AgesPhoto by Adobe Stock For lifelong learners, there’s no end date on educational pursuits. Local adult-oriented institutions are ensuring that residents have access to classes well into their golden years. Established in 1938, Main Line School Night offers about 1,000 programs each year, split over the course of two semesters, drawing around 4,500 students annually. […]
Two New Reasons to Visit Suburban SquareSuburban Collectiv and Pilot & Powell open pop-ups in Ardmore.
10 Ways to Enjoy the Holidays By the BeachExpert picks for seasonal fun in the Jersey Shore region.
7 Financial Lessons for Young AdultsPhoto by Adobe Stock Whether you are still in college or starting your first job, these tips are for you.  Including Gen Z and the youngest section of the Millennial demographic, today’s generation of young adults are faced with the challenge of navigating a complex financial landscape. This is true even for young adults who […]
Perfect Pies for the Holidays Need Thanksgiving desserts? Try these sweets from these 7 local bakeries.
11 Places in the Philadelphia Suburbs to Cut Your Own Christmas TreeA family holiday tradition for many, these farms provide a range of live trees perfect for decorating.
29 Local Places to Get Turkey And All the Trimmings To GoIf you don't want to spend the whole day in the kitchen, these local restaurants and gourmet grocers have you covered.